with the permission of LET'S LIVE Magazine
Is SOD The Solution To Arthritis, Heart Disease
A. Steenblock, M.S. , N.M.D., D.O.
we need a natural, safe and effective treatment if we are
sick. SOD (superoxide dismutase) is a natural, safe enzyme
that has helped treat a variety of health problems. Arthritis
and other auto immune conditions such as lupus, respond
well to this agent. These inflammatory diseases are due
in great degree to the reaction of white blood cells on
tissues. White blood cells generate harmful free radicals
such as superoxide anion (an oxygen molecule that has acquired
an extra electron). Free radicals are like sparks and smoke
from a bonfire that isn't getting enough air. Sod "soaks
up" these sparks and smoke, turning them into harmless substances.
SOD has been shown to be a unique, anti-inflammatory drug
by virtue of a combination of the following characteristics:
It is effective; it can be taken with other anti-inflammatory;
it's effects are long lasting; treatment can be adjusted
to the location of the disease (this applies only to the
injectable form); it is nontoxic and causes no adverse side
effects; it generally doesn't cause allergic reactions;
and it doesn't interact with other drugs to cause side effects.
In addition to it's effectiveness in the treatment of osteoarthritis,
rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and other autoimmune disorders,
SOD appears to be beneficial in treating other age related
Recent research indicates that when tissue undergoes a period
of lack of oxygen (hypoxia), followed by the reestablishment
of the oxygen supply, free radicals form in the blood vessel
wall's inner lining. These free radicals cause extensive
damage to the vessel wall, opening holes through which water,
calcium and other substances penetrate the tissues. This
accumulation of fluid and calcium causes further damage
and is what injures and/or kills the tissues when they temporarily
lose their oxygen supply.
Currently, surgeons are considering using SOD during the
postoperative phase of open-heart-surgery, since experimental
work has demonstrated that this enzyme protects the tissues
from surgical trauma. In addition, transplant surgeons are
beginning to administer SOD in order to keep organs alive
for long periods of time once they're taken out of the body.
The inner linings of blood vessels manufacture SOD, which
helps prevent the white blood cells known as PMNs (polymorphs)
and monocyte from sticking to the blood vessel wall. When
body tissue is without oxygen for extended periods of time,
the amount of SOD present in blood vessel linings may have
so many free radicals generated that the enzymes are not
able to remove them at all. This short supply of SOD causes
damage or death of the tissue from the excessive amounts
of free radicals. Some people naturally maintain higher
levels of SOD than others. The level of SOD and other antioxidants
in our blood vessels is controlled, in part, by our genes.
How our genetic mechanisms function in the production these
antioxidant enzymes may partly explain why some of us live
long, healthy lives while others die prematurely.
In addition to the health of our blood vessels, the overall
health of our tissues may depend on the amount of antioxidants
in them. In recent studies, high levels of SOD in relation
to metabolic rates were shown to correlate directly to longevity.
These results suggest that the SOD-to-superoxide-anion ratio
in our tissues relates to how long we live (the more SOD
and fewer free radicals your tissues produce, the longer
you will live).
SOD may play a role in treating Alzheimer's disease and
senile dementia. Recent studies indicate that the areas
in the brain affected by the diseases are the same areas
that suffer free-radical damage from hypoxia-reperfusion
injury. The identification and treatment of people at risk
for hypoxia-reperfusion injury is difficult because those
who are affected tell themselves that becoming forgetful
is "normal", when in fact it should never be considered
normal. I have used chelating therapy, along with SOD and
other antioxidants, in many cases of early dementia and
have seen excellent results. A paper describing my treatment
methods is available by sending a stamped, self-addressed,
large envelope to "Dementia" at the address at the end of
Alcohol has been shown to produce the superoxide anion,
and alcohol produces the scarring of the liver leading to
the condition known as cirrhosis of the liver. SOD should
be taken by anyone who drinks to help development of scar
tissue. The same holds for those of us with high cholesterol
and a family history of heart disease. We need to do everything
we can to prevent the development of atherosclerosis.
In the last year, health food companies have developed whole-food
antioxidant enzyme complexes containing high quantities
of SOD, aling with catalase and glutathione reductase. The
new products are unique in that they are vegetable concentrates
in in an enteric coating, which keeps them from being destroyed
by the stomach's acid. In the past, SOD was available in
the form of pills containing very little SOD. The new pills
each contain more than 1.5 million units. Consult your nutritionally
oriented physician to determine the proper dosage for you.
Dr Steenblock, a member of our Medical Advisory Board,
is president of the Anti-Aging Research Institute of America,
222821 Lake Forest Dr., Suite 114, El Toro, CA 92630, 714-770-9616.
He practices general, preventative and restorative medicine,
and has written a number of articles and books that may
be obtained by writing to the above address.
Fighting Free Radicals
by Michael Lemmon, DVM
are free radicals? They sound dangerous - and they are.
You may have read about them recently in connection with
the aging process and with degenerative diseases. How are
they formed? What kind of damage do they do? Most importantly,
how does the body protect itself against them?
the contributing causes of arthritis is the excess accumulation
of free radicals in the joint capsule - the fluid-filled
sac surrounding every joint in the body.
fluid, or "joint oil" is kept healthy with the help of enzymes
produced by the body. The enzymes act like soap - they clean
away the free radicals - keeping the joint properly lubricated
and allowing free movement. Otherwise, the free radicals
would slowly eat away the lining of the joint capsule, causing
pain and swelling.
with arthritic animals know the stiff, painful legacy of
the disease, as joints get seemingly "frozen" into position.
can be done about this? First, it helps to know where the
free radicals come from.
radicals are formed during normal cellular metabolism, when
cells take in nutrients, assimilate and utilize the nutrients,
and then excrete the waste products.
of these waste products are free radicals. Wherever you
find poor quality foods being eaten, you will also find
an excess of free radicals.
fats and moldy grains are two leading sources of free radical
production in both animals and humans. Where do they come
an essential ingredient in any diet. Rancidity is caused
by oxidation of fats during processing or storage of foods.
Mold often occurs from storage conditions. Often chemicals
which are sprayed or added to foods to help control other
problems increase free radical production in foods. Chemicals
and pollutants in our air, water, and food supply also significantly
increase free radical production in the body.
radicals, if they are not neutralized by antioxidants, will
cause damage to the body's tissue systems.
is, however, protection. Many cases of arthritis will respond
effectively and quickly to a selected diet of fresh foods
avoiding rancid fats, moldy grains and chemicals that are
present in processed, commercial foods. Since most owners
must rely on the convenience of commercial foods, it becomes
doubly important to supplement their animal's diets with
effective antioxidant is the enzyme combination of superoxide
dismutase (SOD) and catalase (CAT).
two enzymes are produced in the cells of both animals and
humans. We are each born with an enzyme "bank". Babies have
twice as much SOD - catalase as adults. These SOD - catalase
enzymes are the most free radical destroyers. They also
help remove other poisons and toxins.
ability to to produce SOD - catalase decreases with age.
There is good evidence that over time, the excessive use
of the body's enzyme systems also decreases this enzyme
production. Sparing the body's enzyme "bank", or reserve,
by consuming raw foods that are rich in enzymes helps solve
this free radical problem.
solution is to take SOD - catalase enzyme supplements. The
most effective are derived from specially grown wheat sprouts.
The wheat sprout tablet form of SOD - catalase is the most
beneficial source of antioxidant protection because they
are whole foods and contain both ' live' enzymes and all
the nutritional co-factors to complete utilization.
supplements have proven to be very helpful for arthritis
and other geriatric degenerative in my practice as well
as in the practice of other veterinarians throughout the
country. SOD - catalase supplements are harmless and do
not have any negative side-effects.
given depends on the size of the animal and also on the
severity of the condition. Sometimes amounts of six or more
tablets are given daily to more reduce the buildup of free
radicals and other toxins in the body. This reduces the
pain and inflammation of the condition, allowing the veterinarian
to prescribe lower doses as needed. Relief of free radical
toxins also promoted vitality and speeds healing when an
animal is injured or undergoes surgery.
than treating arthritis and other degenerative problems
in animals with heavy doses of steroids and other drugs
- which have harmful side effects - we can instead rely
on the use of simple, effective whole food antioxidants
that work in harmony with the body assisting in it's daily
routine, helping to alleviate pain, discomfort, and disease.
Lemmon, DVM is a holistic veterinarian based in Renton,
WA. At his Highlands Veterinary he practices both complimentary
(holistic) medicine and conventional (allopathic) medicine.
He has appeared on local TV and radio shows. He serves on
the boards of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association,
and Resort of the Mountains, a rustic retreat center specializing
in health care, cleansing and rejuvenation.
ACIDS, ANTIOXIDANTS AND ENZYMES
THE FUNCTION OF AMINO ACIDS
acids are the chemical units or the "building blocks ' as
they are popularly called, that make up proteins. Protein
could not exist without the proper combination of amino
acids. To understand how vital amino acids are, you must
understand how essential proteins are to life. It is protein
that provides the structure for all living things. Each
organism from the largest animal to the tiniest microbe
is composed of protein. And in its various forms, it is
protein that participates in the vital chemical processes
that enable us to sustain life.
In the human body, protein substances make up the muscles,
ligaments, tendons, organs, glands, nails, hair, and body
fluids (except for bile and urine). Proteins are essential
for the growth of bones. Enzymes, hormones, and genes are
also comprised of various proteins. Next to water, protein
makes up the greatest portion of our body weight. Consequently,
it is easy to see why meeting our body's protein requirements
is so important to good health.
In order for a protein to be complete, it must contain all
of its particular amino acids. Amino acids may be linked
together almost indefinitely to form more than 50,000 different
proteins and 20,000 known enzymes. Because each type of
protein is composed of different amino acids, each being
tailored for a specific need, they are not interchangeable.
Amino acids contain about 16 percent nitrogen. This distinguishes
them from carbohydrates and fats in the body.
The central nervous system cannot function without amino
acids, which act as neurotransmitters or as precursors to
the neurotransmitters. They are necessary in order for the
brain to receive and send messages. Unless all of the amino
acids are present together, almost anything can go wrong
with the transmission of the message. A meal high in protein
will temporarily increase alertness.
There are approximately twenty-nine commonly known amino
acids that account for the hundreds of different types of
proteins present in all living things. In the human body,
the liver produces about 80 percent of the amino acids we
need. The remaining 20 percent must be obtained from outside
sources. The amino acids that must be obtained from the
diet are called essential amino acids. The essential amino
acids that enter the body through diet are arginine, Histidine,
Isoleucine, Leucine, Lysine, methionine, phenylalanine,
Threonine, Tryptophan, and Valine. Other amino acids that
the body seems to be able to manufacture from other sources
are ala nine, arginine, aspartic acid, asparagine, glutamic
acid, glut amine, glycine, praline, and serine.
Most of the amino acids (excluding glycine) can appear in
two forms, one being the mirror image of the other. These
are called the D- and L-series. Because amino acids in the
L-series are in the same natural form as amino acids found
in living plant or animal tissue, they are considered to
be more compatible to human biochemistry. The ones that
make up a protein are all of the L-configuration, except
phenylalanine, which can also appear as DL-phenylalanine.
The process of assembling amino acids to make proteins or
breaking down proteins into individual amino acids for the
body's use is continuous. When we need more enzyme proteins,
the body produces more enzyme proteins; when we need more
cells, the body produces more proteins for cells. These
different types of proteins are produced as the need arises.
Should the body deplete itself of its reserves of any of
the essential amino acids, it would not be able to produce
those proteins requiring such amino acids. The resulting
protein shortage could easily lead to any number of disorders.
How could such a deficiency occur? Easier than you might
think. If the diet is improperly balanced, that is, contains
inadequate amounts of the essential amino acids, physical
disorders will arise. Other symptoms will appear if an individual
suffers from a protein deficiency stemming from his inability
to digest food properly. In order to avoid such problems,
we can make sure we eat a properly balanced diet, or we
can take supplements containing essential amino acids.
In addition to their other vital functions, amino acids
enable vitamins and minerals to perform their jobs properly.
Even if the vitamins and minerals are absorbed and assimilated
rapidly, they will not be effective unless amino acids are
ON THE SHELVES
acids are available in combination with various multivitamin
formulas, as protein mixtures, in a wide variety of food
supplements, and in a number of amino acid formulas. They
can be purchased as capsules, tablets, and powders. Most
amino acid supplements are derived from egg protein, yeast
protein, or animal protein. The crystalline free form amino
acids are generally extracted from a variety of grain products.
Brown rice bran is a prime source, although cold-pressed
yeast and milk proteins are also used. Amino acids in the
free form are the purest. Free form amino acids can be taken
for rapid absorption. These white crystalline amino acids
are stable at room temperature and decompose when heated
to temperatures between 350 F and 660 F (180 C and 350 C).
is a group of vitamins, minerals, and enzymes called antioxidants
that help protect our body from the formation of free radicals.
Free radicals are atoms or groups of atoms that can cause
damage to our cells, impairing our immune system and leading
to infections and various degenerative diseases. There are
three known free radicals--the super oxide, the hydroxyl,
and peroxide. They may be formed by exposure to radiation
and toxic chemicals, overexposure to the sun's rays, or
through the action of various metabolic processes, such
as the use of stored fat molecules for energy. The way in
which free radicals are normally kept in check is by the
action of free radical scavengers that occur naturally in
the body. These scavengers neutralize the free radicals.
Certain enzymes serve this vital function. Four important
enzymes that neutralize free radicals naturally are super
oxide dismutase (SOD), methione reductase, catalase, and
glutathione peroxidase. I he body makes these as a matter
of course. In addition, the work of these scavenger enzymes
can be supplemented by a diet rich in antioxidants such
as vitamins A, E, and C, the mineral selenium, and other
nutrients. These antioxidants are also scavengers, gobbling
up the free radical particles.
diet is inadequate or lacing the appropriate antioxidants,
or if the system is overwhelmed by free radicals, you can
take the following supplements to aid the body in destroying
A is necessary for healthy mucous cells and promotes germ-killing
enzymes. Beta-carotene and vitamin A destroy carcinogens
(cancer-producing substances) .
to increasing interferon production, vitamin C is a potent
stimulator of T-effector cell activity and is also a very
powerful antioxidant. Vitamin C reduces lipid production
in the brain and spinal cord, which frequently incur free
radical damage. These sites can be protected by significant
amounts of vitamin C, which is needed to cross the blood-brain
barrier. Vitamin C acts as a more potent free radical scavenger
in the presence of a bioflavonoid called hesperidin.
E is a powerful antioxidant that prevents fat and cell membrane
rancidity and protects the coating around each cell. Vitamin
E improves oxygen utilization and enhances immune response.
New evidence suggests that zinc is needed to maintain normal
blood concentrations of vitamin E.
a key regulator of T-lymphocyte function in the body. GLA
can be made from linoleic acid, which i found in vegetable
oils, but if zinc, magnesium, an vitamins C, Be (pyridoxine),
B, (niacin), and A are deft cient, the conversion may be
blocked. Hydrogenate vegetable oils, margarine, or a high-fat
diet can als inhibit this important conversion to GLA. Evenin
primrose oil, black currant seed oil, and borage oil ar
the main sources of preformed GLA.
sulphur-containing amino acid is needed to produces glutathione.
It is used by the liver and the lymphocytes to detoxify
chemicals and germ poisons. Cystein Is a powerful detoxifier
of alcohol, tobacco smoke, ant environmental pollutants,
all of which are immune suppressors.
powerful antioxidant rids the body of free radicals, protecting
it from the harmful effects of metals, drugs, cigarette
smoke, and alcohol.
with vitamin E, selenium is essential for the key enzyme,
glutathione peroxidase (each enzyme molecule contains four
selenium atoms). It stimulates increased antibody response
to germ infection.
an enzyme. A health body produces nearly 5 million units
of SOD and its partner catalase daily. SOD revitalizes the
cells and reduces the rate of cell destruction. It removes
the most common free radical, super oxide. SOD also aids
in the body's utilization of zinc, copper, and manganese.
free radical production increases with aging, while SOD
levels are reduced. The potential of SOD to slow the aging
process is currently being explored. The SOD supplement
in pill form mus* be enteric coated, that is, coated with
a protective substance that allows the SOD pill to pass
intact through the stomach acid into the small intestines
to be absorbed. A supplement should be able to provide a
daily amount of about 5 million units or higher. SOD naturally
occurs in barley grass, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage,
wheat grass, and most green plants.
Agrigenic Food Corporation Food Corporation
product contains large amounts of antioxidants to aid the
body in destroying free radicals.
WHAT ARE ENZYMES?
in all living plant and animal matter, enzymes are essential
for maintaining proper function of the body, digesting food,
and aiding in the repair of tissue. Made up of protein,
the thousands of known enzymes play a role in virtually
all body activities. In fact, life could not be sustained
without enzymes, despite the presence of sufficient amounts
of vitamins, minerals, water, and proteins. Scientists are
unable to manufacture enzymes synthetically.
Each enzyme has a specific function in the body that no
other enzyme can fulfill. The shape of a particular enzyme
is so specialized that it will initiate a reaction in only
certain substances. The substance that is altered in the
presence of the enzyme is called the substrate. The enzyme
grasps, holds, and binds the substrate with other molecules,
increasing its rate of reaction with these substances. Most
reactions in cells are catalyzed (initiated) by these essential
proteins, whose mineral component allows the reaction to
take place. Because enzymes are needed for numerous body
functions, it is important that they not be overloaded.
For example, if the body must produce sufficient amounts
of enzymes or digestive function, then production of enzymes
for proper metabolic function may be lacking.
While the body manufactures a supply of enzymes, it can
also obtain enzymes from food. Unfortunately, enzymes are
extremely sensitive to heat. Low degrees of heat will destroy
enzymes in food, so in order to obtain enzymes from the
diet, the food must be eaten raw. Cooked foods will be depleted
of all enzymes. Those who do not eat raw foods or supplement
their diets with enzymes put undue strain on the supply
of enzymes in their bodies. Because enzymes are the only
nutrients that can supply the body with energy needed for
its activities, overuse can impair the functioning capacity
of the body, making it susceptible to cancer, obesity, cardiovascular
disease, and a host of other illnesses.
To ease the burden of the enzymes manufactured in the body,
it is helpful to eat raw foods. Not only will they supply
enzymes for use by the body, but they will also inhibit
the release of enzymes by the body that occurs with the
consumption of cooked foods. This enables the body's supply
of enzymes to work at a higher capacity when needed. Avocados,
bananas, and mangos an rich in enzymes, but sprouts are
its highest source. I cooked and raw foods are eaten at
the same meal, take one to three enzyme supplements during
the meal-- not afterward. Enzyme capsules can be opened
and sprinkled on the food.
THE FUNCTION OF ENZYMES
assist in practically all body functions. In hydrolysis,
digestive enzymes break down food particles for storage
in the leer or muscles. This stored energy is later converted
by other enzymes for use by the body when necessary. Enzymes
also utilize food ingested by the body to construct new
muscle tissue, nerve cells, bone, skin, or glandular tissue.
For example, one enzyme can take dietary phosphorus and
convert it to bone.
These important nutrients also aid in elimination of toxins
by the colon, honeys, lungs, and skin. One enzyme, for instance,
initiates the formation of urea, which is excreted in the
urine, while another enables the elimination of carbon dioxide
from the lungs.
In addition to its other functions, enzymes decompose poisonous
hydrogen peroxide and liberate healthful oxygen from it.
Iron is concentrated in the blood due to the action of enzymes,
which also help the blood to coagulate in order to stop
bleeding. These vital proteins promote oxidation, a process
in which oxygen is united with other substances. Energy
is created in the oxidation process. They also protect the
blood from dangerous waste materials by converting these
substances to forms that are easily eliminated by the body.
healthy body produces nearly 5 million units of the enzymes
super oxide dismutase (SOD) and its partner, catalase, daily
SOD revitalizes the cells and reduces the rate of cell destruction.
It removes the most common free radical, super oxide. This
antioxidant also aids in the body's utilization of zinc,
copper, and manganese. With aging, free radical production
increases, while SOD levels are reduced.
If the SOD supplement is in pill arm, it must be enteric
coated--that is, coated with a protective substance that
allows the SOD pill to pass intact through the stomach acid
into the small intestines to be absorbed. A supplement should
be able to provide a daily amount of about 5 million units
or higher. SOD naturally occurs in the following food sources:
barley grass, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, wheat
grass, and most green plants.
Plant enzymes differ substantially from animal enzymes.
Pancreatic, derived from secretions of an animal pancreas,
functions best in the alkaline media of the small intestine.
This enzyme is important in cancer research.
Unripe papaya, pineapples, and the aspergillus plant are
excellent sources of enzymes. The enzymes extracted from
papaya and pineapple, pepsin and bromelain respectively,
are proteolytic enzymes. These work on proteins exclusively,
breaking them down into smaller pep tones by hydrolysis.
Other examples of proteolytic enzymes include pepsin, trypsin,
rennin, pancreatic, and chymotrypsin. The enzyme pepsin
is found in the gastric juice, and is responsible for the
breakdown of protein into smaller peptizes.
Beneficial results have been obtained by utilizing proteolytic
enzymes as anti-inflammatory agents. These enzymes are used
for sports injuries, diseases of the respiratory tract,
laryngitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, emphysema, viral diseases,
cancer, and most types of degenerative diseases. Proteolytic
enzymes are available through Nature's Plus and Miller Pharmacal
Aspergillus plants have different strains that allow
protease, amylase, and lipase to be extracted from them,
assuring proper digestion. The enzyme supplement you choose
should contain all the enzyme groups to ensure maximum benefit
for digestion of any cooked food.