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Showing posts from November, 2011

This is me without the B

I mentioned a few days ago I'd stopped taking my new multivitamins with megadoses of vitamin B. I haven't resumed taking the GNC Hair, Skin & Nails vitamins, which also have vitamin B but in a moderate amount. Based on a few incidents, I believe that added vitamin B was making me lethargic and depressed. I don't believe added vitamin B has those effects on most people, but I may be sensitive to it. I don't know if the change in my vitamin regimen had anything to do with it, but today I got up at 3:30 a.m. (couldn't sleep), washed the clothes, washed the curtains, cleaned the refrigerator, finished painting the living room and entry (a project I started in April and resumed yesterday), cleaned, repaired and painted the heat registers, dropped off a bunch of items at Goodwill, did the grocery shopping, skipped dinner, and watched a movie at my parents' house. (Except for the painting, that's typically what I might get done in a week, outside my job.) It

Unifying Theory of Holiday Dinners

You've probably attended a family holiday dinner like this: the dinner is served a few hours late, the adults are slumped in front of the TV, and the kids run around the house screaming. What can account for these different behaviors? It could be what I've heard called sugar hangover, and when I say sugar, I mean carbohydrates in general. Consider a typical Thanksgiving Day: breakfast is some combination of cereal, juice, toast, jam, fruit, waffles, granola bars, pastries, yogurt, smoothies, and so on. It's all high carb food. Four hours later, everyone's blood sugar has crashed. For most adults, this means feeling tired and hungry. They won't snack because they don't want to ruin their appetite for dinner. For kids, though, some research has shown that they get a big adrenaline rush when their blood sugar crashes. Adrenaline is the fight-or-flight hormone--the one that sends them screaming around the house while their parents are too tired to send them outsi

Vitamin B Run Amok; Vitamin D on Target

Although it's been some time since I got over my sinus infection (after three rounds of antibiotics, the last of which ended a month ago), I haven't felt quite right: lethargic, unmotivated, and painfully bored. As I took my new multi-vitamin pill Friday morning, I thought, " It's just like that time I had those drinks with the B vitamins ." (See Feb. 13 comment in linked post.) Indeed, the vitamin pill label showed B vitamins in amounts 25 to 33 times the recommended daily allowances. This was for three tablets, and was taking only one, but that's still way over the top. Even a 100-gram serving of liver has B vitamins in the low single milligrams, or less, not the 50-gram doses of B-1, B-2 and B-6 and the 200 microgram dose of B-12 per three tablets of the vitamin. The bottle recommends taking three to six pills daily. Of course, I stopped taking the vitamins, and today I felt peppy enough to try a new hairdo, buy some clothes and take my dog to the dog park

Fodmaps Diet: Why Not DIY?

The Wall Street Journal has, for once, run a useful health article: "When Everyday Foods are Hard to Digest" by Melinda Beck, November 8, 2011. The article says what some of us have known for awhile: certain carbohydrates can cause digestive problems for some people. Now, a small but growing contingent of specialists is focusing on food intolerances as a possible culprit—and a new dietary approach, called the low-Fodmaps diet, is gaining attention around the world. The theory is that many people with IBS have trouble absorbing certain carbohydrates in their small intestines. Large molecules of those foods travel to the colon, where they are attacked by bacteria and ferment, creating the telltale IBS symptoms of gas, bloating, constipation or diarrhea. A long list of foods—including dairy products, some fruits and vegetables, wheat, rye, corn syrup and artificial sweeteners—can potentially create such problems in susceptible people. Collectively, they're known as F

Sybil: Multiple Personality, Hoax, or Vitamin Deficiency?

After [Dr. Connie Wilbur's] presentation a Q & A followed, and someone asked how [recovered multiple personality disorder patient] Sybil was doing. Connie's answer was brief, almost throwaway. Sybil had lived for a long time without much energy, she said, because in addition to everything else that was wrong with her, she had suffered for years from a disease called pernicious anemia. Another audience member followed with an unrelated question, and that was the end of pernicious anemia and Sybil. No one stopped to think about the bombshell Connie had just revealed. -from the book  Sybil Exposed(1) My, how times have changed. In days of old, people who acted strangely enough were said to be possessed and put through bizarre and dangerous rituals to cure them. Wait, we're still living in that era. Change "possessed" to "multiple personality disorder" (or "dissociative identity disorder" as it's called now) and you have the story of