- DHA/EPA: The reason is simple. Most people start off their lifestyle change with excessive omega 6/3 ratio’s in their diet and tissues. I strongly recommend everyone getting a O6/3 blood assay done prior to making the shift. I did and mine back in 2006 was 37:1. Today its 4:1. I do not believe this would have been possible without the use of supplements in the beginning of my transformation, because of how badly our food supply is loaded down with O6 and stripped of O3. The biggest change I made was altering my version of the paleo diet I ate based upon my labs. I based this also on the outstanding work of Dr. Stephen Cunnane as well. We must consider that the 06 content may not just be from dietary sources. It could be caused by a modern mismatch in mammalian cell membrane biology that most are unaware of. When you read about his work you begin to realize there is a lot more to the story of what is best for modern human. I cover his work in the Brain Gut series.
Even the food sources naturally high in O3′s, like fish and meat, have been stripped by feeding farmed fish and cows corn and soy pellets loaded with O6′s. The levels one should shoot for is based upon your current O6/3 level and your highly sensitive CRP. Most people will fall between 1-4 grams. The more inflammation one has, the higher dose I should consider. If you want to increase your seafood intake that would be a fine move as well. I think the ideal 06/3 ratio is below 6 to 1, and I think we should be careful before we bash 06 to the ground. I think that maybe unwise. I have a theory that may explain why modern humans concentrate 06′s as a by product of all neolithic disease. One caveat, I am a much bigger fan of eating seafood in its evolutionary biologic package than I am in using Fish oil or Krill Oil. Moreover, when one begins to understand what DHA is used for in humans (brain function) we begin to understand how this PUFA is protected best in its evolutionary package (seafood) by Iodine in synapses and in many critical areas like the adrenal gland. Other chemicals that protect the double bonds of this PUFA are made from DHA called resolvins, lipoxins, and protectins. I cover these extensively in the Brain Gut Series. The paleo solution may not be Homo’s solution. A paleo template is a great option to regain your health from a western diet but there is a level above it when you have a large brain that may be riddled with inflammation. A paleo diet may not go far enough for some of us. We need to be mindful of that.
2.Minerals Selenium, Iodine, and Iron: This threesome are critical for thyroid function. The most important mineral for a human with a large brain is Iodine. I cover this later in the blog in the massively important Brain Gut series. The most common clinical scenario I see is thyroid disfunction. This is unusual to me now because back in my pathology book from the 1980′s it said thyroid disorders were quite rare. Now they have become ridiculously common. The reason is simple. Our epigenetics have been altered dramatically because most food is now man made and processed, our light is artificial light, and environmental toxins of all sorts have gone through the roof over the last 100 years. When we eat man made foods we get illnesses like neolithic diseases. This is critical because if the thyroid is not working well free T3 levels will be low and likely not going to be available to convert LDL cholesterol to the hormones the brain uses to control our 20 trillion cells in our body. Remember that T3 and Vitamin A is co factors in the conversion of LDL cholesterol to the steroid cascade. We covered this in the Hormone 101 blog. Thyroid dysfunction is epidemic in the world where a western diet is entrenched. One in ten adult American women have been diagnosed with thyroid disorders and some endocrinologists suggest that as many as 25% of adult American women are afflicted with clinically detectable thyroid dysfunction. I think this number is conservative and gets worse with every subsequent generation to the effect of epigenetics. Severe iodine deficiency can cause hypothyroidism. But many physicians believe iodine deficiency is rare in the United States and other developed countries since the addition of iodine to salt. I am not so sure about this. Again, just because its in salt does not mean we absorb it. The WHO estimate between 1.5 to billion humans are iodine deficient. The more red meat one eats the more iodine deficient you can expect to become. Iodine is bountiful in seafood in its primordial evolutionary package. It is also found in sea vegetables and seaweeds. Considering the work or Drs, Remko Kuipers, Cunnane, and Crawford about the importance of seawater in human evolution it would make sense this is where our best supplies come from. (Kuipers is due to speak at AHS 2012 @ Harvard)
I have found women are most at risk for poor absorption of iodine. After the thyroid gland needs, the distal portions of the human mammary glands are the heaviest metabolic concentrators of iodine in the body. Iodine is readily incorporated into the tissues surrounding the mammary nipples and is essential for the maintenance of healthy functioning breast tissue. This plays a huge role in fibrocystic disease and the the development of breast cancers in my opinion.
One clinical finding I always ask about is the presence of fibrocystic breast disease.When it is present I immediately think the woman is likely suffering from an undiagnosed iodine deficiency. I distinctly remember in medical school seeing a woman’s fibrocystic disease cured in less than an hour by an ancient physician who taught us how to examine a women’s breasts. She had volunteered to be a guinea pig for us during our medical education, and on this day we could not examine her without making her scream and cry because her breasts were so tender to palpation. Our MD proctor was about 80 years old and he too was a volunteer helping us learn our craft. He stopped me from examining her breasts and asked her a few questions and then he asked us to leave the room. He applied Lugol’s solution to her vulva and her nipples and we were able to examine her without any pain a half hour later. It made a huge impression on me. He asked her if she was on any thyroid meds and if she had bad energy or weight gain. A lack of iodine was the source of her painful breasts! Her labs did not reveal any major issues when we saw her either because we are taught to just screen for a TSH and not a free T3 or free T4 level. I never forgot this lesson on the thyroid.
When one begins eating a paleo diet your nutrient density and food substrate improve so your iodine needs go up as your mitochondria are being asked to do more. So with a paleo diet you get a relative iodine deficiency for the first 3-6 months of the adaptation of the diet. I always as my patients to eat shrimp twice a week for the first 6 months or to supplement with a kelp pill every third day. That seems to do the trick for most people. Iodine 200-300 mcgs every other day if you eat seafood once a week. If you eat it more frequently you likely don’t need any supplementation.
The next one we will discuss is iron. Clinically, Iron is not important to supplement because the paleo diet is extremely robust in iron. But many of us forget our diet is only as good as what we absorb. If gut dysbiosis is present (usually is to some degree) or there is a lot of fructose in the diet iron absorption is a real problem. When one eats a lot of fructose in juices or in fruit (or HFCS products) you will increase your absorption of iron in the gut while also increasing your serum albumin. High iron levels are not good. High albumin levels can cause our free testosterone or estrogen levels to dramatically fall because the increased albumin binds them much like SHBG does in obesity or in hypothyroidism. None of this is good for optimal.
For the thyroid gland to produce the most active form of the thyroid hormone T3, selenium is essential but also helps regulate the amount of hormone that is produced. Remember T3 is a co factor in steroid cascades and also in reversing muscle leptin resistance at UCP3. We need 200 mcgs a day. Most don’t eat it. One brazil nut a day can do the trick. If you don’t eat them then I recommend a supplement every other day of 200 mcgs. Its dirt cheap and easy to find. Selenium is also critical in many stress related processes. Selenium is active in prevention of oxidative stress. Selenium works with a group of nutrients that include vitamin E, vitamin C, glutathione, and vitamin B3, to prevent oxidative stress. I wrote about selenium here in more detail. Se is one brazil nut a day or 200 mcgs a day. Fe is 325 mgs a day and take it with a vitamin C to increase its absorption and make you less nauseous.
The last supplement is Vitamin D3: Vitamin D3 is a pro hormone, and is vital to immunity and to other physiologic functions. Vitamin D3 is an important neuro-steroid hormone responsible for many elements in brain development and behavior as well. Vitamin D3 increases brain levels of glutathione, a powerful natural antioxidant that is the body’s most important tool for detoxifying and excreting heavy metals, and one that is rapidly consumed during oxidant stress from toxins and other sources. Vitamin D3 is made from LDL cholesterol in the steroid chain. Most vitamin D3 in the American food chain is added and is D2, not D3. This is especially true in dairy products. The active form of vitamin Dis D3 ,and is made in our skin by sunlight. The best dietary source is from fatty fish or other animal products. Few people have good dietary sources of vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 can also be made from sun exposure, but the dermatologists have done a masterful job of convincing many they will succumb from skin cancer if this is their major source. So most Americans do not get vitamin D3 this way either. This is why we have an epidemic in patients with low vitamin D levels. Most Americans fail to even get the low RDA of 400 IU from all sources. I would suggest you read my Vitamin D post here. For this vitamin, I suggest a basal dose of 5000IU for most patients. For those who are suboptimal, I will push this big time. And I am no fan of 50K of Vitamin D2 a week….its suboptimal dosing with a suboptimal form of Vitamin D for humans.
This came from here:http://jackkruse.com/what-are-the-top-ten-paleo-supplements/