(KEYWORDS: what are phytosterols, cholesterol lowering plant phytosterols, phytosterol sitosterol, phytosterol complex, beta sitosterol )
PHYTOSTEROLS are very important plant fats, compounds with a structure similar to that of cholesterol. They control the movement of fluids in plant membranes and found in small quantities in every vegetable we eat.
Don't get put off by these two structures. This isn't a lesson in organic chemistry! But it may interesting to some. (I'm a Chem major hence odd references to molecular structures throughout this Chiropractic Help site. Chemistry is important!)
Their similarity to cholesterol means that this phytosterol complex of
substances compete with the intestinal absorption of ordinary animal
cholesterol. Eating larger quantities of plant phytosterols increases
the fecal excretion of animal-origin cholesterol that we have consumed
in say dairy products.
What's particularly interesting is that food scientists have repeatedly
confirmed that phytosterols reduce the UNfriendly LDL cholesterol whilst
not affect the friendly HDL cholesterol, blood levels of which should
be as high as possible. HDL helps keep blood vessels walls free of
atherosclerosis. Everyone with a cholesterol problem should know what are phytosterols.
American National Cholesterol Education Program
For this reason the above Expert Panel recommends phytosterol-enriched foods as part of their prevention of cardiovascular disease programme.
This is where Naturopathic and Medical doctors find themselves
poles apart. The former say we should be eating more foods that are rich
in phytosterols. Medicine says we should enrich food and take drugs
containing phytosterols. At great profit to the drug companies. If you know what are phytosterols you can save yourself a mint.
PHYTOSTEROLS AND CHOLESTEROL
There are many, many studies proving conclusively that the phytosterol complex of compounds will reduce serum LDL and total cholesterol, and in a short time. A study at McGill University found that after only 10 days, with no change of diet, addition of beta-sitosterol had a significant effect on LDL in the blood. They concluded: "These findings suggest that a significant lowering of plasma total and LDL cholesterol can be effected by a modest dietary intake of soybean phytosterols."
WHAT ARE PHYTOSTEROLS AND CANCER
Phytosterols are considered to be 'functional foods', meaning that they have health-promoting and disease-preventing properties.
They are not only improve the health of blood vessels but there are numerous studies indicating their anti-cancer (particularly breast, prostate and colon cancer) and anti-oxidant properties.
PHYTOSTEROL SITOSTEROL and THE PROSTATE GLAND
Conditions of the prostate gland like prostatitis (now recognised very frequently to be a non-infective condition), benign prostate hypertrophy (an non-cancerous enlarged prostate gland) and prostate cancer (the leading malignant and fatal cancer of men) are both common in older men, very common, and very nasty.
The maximum urinary flow rate (called Qmax) - the rate at which men can pee! - is reduced by prostate enlargement. Squaws wouldn't understand perhaps since they tend to have the exact opposite problem, a leaking bladder, but in brave talk, men have an "air-lock". It's difficult to initiate urination, and the stream is weak and slow. It takes for ever to have a sweet pee.
Perhaps worse, braves are unable to empty their bladders. The so-called PVR (post void residual) volume of urine is increased, meaning they have to pee more often, and often have to get up several times at night. Disturbed sleep leads to other problems, not least of which is short-term memory loss. Residual urine leads to bladder infections.
Non-bacterial prostatis, also called chronic pain pelvic syndrome, doesn't respond to antibiotics. It's a nasty condition causing men to urinate more frequently, with urgency as they are unable to empty the bladder. In short difficult, painful, frequent urination. It responds best perhaps to a prostate massage, a non-painful but awkward and embarrassing process by which your doctor (and some chiropractors) massage the prostate, via the anus, for about two minutes. For my money, that's I would do, rather than have a prostate operation which often leads to impotence. Two minute embarrassment once a month compared to permanent impotence?
preferably BEFORE THE SYMPTOMS START (TODAY!) is to begin making sure you are eating adequate quantities of phytosterols.
However, in the event that you have already started with chronic prostate problems, there is very interesting research that β Beta-Sitosterol, a common phytosterol, has a very significant effect on the prostate gland. "A typical California avocado weighing 173 grams would contain 132 mg beta-sitosterol." (K. Duester: J Am Dietetic Assoc, vol 101(4)) In a powerful randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled research project (the gold standard of research), men gained dramatic relief within six weeks from taking 130 mg of beta-sitosterol daily. Not only did their symptoms decrease, but the residual urine in the bladder (determined by ultrasound scans) and the flow rate improved dramatically.
Eating natural phytosterols as in avocados has no side-effects, however there are concerns about in pill form there is also inhibition of the absorption of the fat soluble vitamins such as vitamin E. It's a completely natural substance that you should be eating every day. They are God's gift to the prostate!
A vegetarian might eat nearly 1000 mg of phytosterols (of which a large portion is beta-sitosterol) per day, but the meat-and-potatoes man might have almost none.
Research concluding that BETA SITOSTEROL is an effective treatment for BPH:
"There were significant improvements over placebo in those treated with &beta sitosterol; the mean difference in the IPSS between placebo and &beta sitosterol was 5.4 and in the quality-of-life index was 0.9. There were also significant improvements in Qmax (4.5 mL/s) and decrease in PVR (33.5 mL) in favour of &beta sitosterol."
"These results show that beta sitosterol is an effective option in the treatment of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia."
PHYTOSTEROLS AND VARICOSE ULCERS AND HAEMORRHOIDS
A proprietary gel called MELLADERM, which contains beta-sitosterol and honey has dramatic effects on varicose ulcers.
VARICOSE VEINS IN LEGS ...
PHYTOSTEROLS AND SESAME SEEDS
The Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry reports the amounts of phytosterols present in nuts and seeds.
Sesame seeds had the highest total phytosterol content (400-413 mg per 100 grams), sunflower (270-289 mg/100 g), pumpkin seeds (265 mg/100 g).
The main problem with sesame seeds is that you have to "fletcherise" to get the get the nutritional value from them. Chew each mouthful 32 times! The best alternative is to dehull them making them into Tahini, a sort of sesame "peanut butter", only nicer, less spoiled with the addition of sugar and hydrogenated oils.
Tahini is widely used in the Middle East in various foods such as Hummus.
What is SESAME TAHINI ...?
Various seed oils such as sunflower, rapeseed (Canola) and corn oil are rich in phytosterols, and are in fact one of the best sources. Phytosterol sitosterol (beta) is one of the most abundant of these cholesterol-lowering plant phytosterols.
This phytosterol complex is particularly heat labile - destructable.
Extraction of these seed oils involves multiple chemical extractions, heating, refining, degumming and bleaching which results in a loss of 10-70% (Kochhar, 1983; Phillips et al., 2002) of the phytosterol in comparison with their crude oils.
Furthermore, Piironenen et al., 2000 found that the refining regime causes significant oxidation and other intermolecular transformations of phytosterols.
Try and find cold pressed oils.
PHYTOSTEROLS AS A FOOD ADDITIVE
Farquhar et al. found that adding beta-sitosterol made food products
unpalatable and unmarketable. Its chemical properties make it "difficult
and inefficient" as a food ingredient. For more details about Biocatalysis and biomolecular engineering ...
http://books.google.co.za/books?id=I_fpl_9de9IC&pg=PA144&dq= B-sitosterol&hl=en&ei=Kcp9TYnwJoSHhQeGw7j5Bg&sa=X&oi=book_re sult&ct=result&resnum=5&ved=0CEEQ6AEwBA#v=onepage&q=B-sitost
CONCLUSION @ WHAT ARE PHYTOSTEROLS
It really shouldn't be necessary for us to take extra phytosterols. If we eat them every day, we are far less likely to get raised cholesterol, prostate hyperplasia, haemorrhoids, varicose ulcers and many cancers.
They are found in all vegetables, salads and seed oils. Fruit oils, from the olive and avocado too are rich in beta-sitosterol - up to 2%.
IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS @ WHAT ARE PHYTOSTEROLS
Here's the deal. Why wait until you get cancer or prostate problems? PROSTATE GLAND HEALTH is a vital subject for every male, for every woman too if loss of her male's libido is important to her!
Why wait for varicose veins ulcers? Now is time to increase your cancer and cholesterol lowering plant phytosterols, and to think about a natural cure for varicose veins. Now is the time, TODAY, to start, for example by looking through our HEALTHY LIVING TIPS ...
Prevention is better than a cure, eh! If you enjoy cooking, even if you don't, then you might dip into these EASY SOUP RECIPES ... They are loaded with phytosterol sitosterol and its 250 first cousins, all there waiting for you, in the prevention of cancer and other diseases. They are also full of soluble fibre, the good stuff that prevents constipation, surely one of the greatest evils that besets the large bowel. A friend confided in me: having an operation for piles is like having a roll of barbed-wire stuck up your rear-end.
So, now you know what are phytosterols ...
HUMMUS AND HUMUS!
The key to healthy vegetables and fruit from the garden is humus, the
break down product of your garden cuttings and clippings, plus all the
vegetable waste like apple cores, eggs shells and potato peels from your
kitchen. It's really not difficult, though turning the compost pile
takes a bit of muscle work. Beats going to the gym.
STARTING A COMPOST PILE ...
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Interesting challenges of the day
1. Mr B has the trophy for the most acute neck in February. He has quite advanced lower neck arthritis for a forty year old, thanks to a severe fall on the head from a trampoline. But this is upper cervical pain. Right rotation is simply impossible. Luckily he is improving rapidly, eighty percent better he says after three treatments. See cervical facet syndrome.
2. Mrs C is a new patient with a long history of lower back pain, hip pain and pain in both feet. We'll see how we get on, Rome wasn't built in a day.
3. Miss U sprained her ankle two months ago, wearing high heels. She still has severe mid foot pain. Xrays and perhaps a CT scan.
4. Mr V is 86 years old and hurt his back helping his wife into the car. Just one treatment of the sacroiliac joint and he's eighty percent better. It's not always like that.
5. Mr W lay on his back knocking down a pillar. Turning his head causes severe vertigo. He needs the Epley exercises, not pills, research shows. Update, he's fine.
6. Mrs X, a young mother has severe lower back pain, with numbness down the posterior thigh, calf and side of foot. It started after a long drive in the car. Update, she's forty percent less painful after four treatments, but the leg is still numb. Update two; she 60% better, but it's slow and is going to take the full 6 weeks to heal. Further update; a setback, after lifting her child she now has leg pain. It's going to the be difficult.
7. Mrs Y, a 70 year old woman is on maintenance care fo a nasty lumbar stenosis despite having to do everything at home. Her husband has a hospital acquired infection in the shoulder. After 4 operations he is incapacitated and going rapidly down hill.
8. Mrs Z, an 78 year old woman is doing remarkably well with a bad sciatica. But at over 200 lbs she is not losing weight, in fact gaining despite my suggestions. She's high risk for a stroke. Referral to a dietician to crack the whip.
9. Mr A, a 73 year old engineer, still working, is doing fine after a long episode of lower back pain. Some pain on the side of the hip remains after five treatments. Reassured him it's not hip arthritis.
10. Mrs B, a 64 year old woman has had Scheuermanns disease; it's left with a spinal kyphosis and chronic middorsal pain. She responds well to chiropractic treatment, provides she come every six weeks or so for treatment.
11. Mr C, a young engineer fell off his mountain bike injuring his cervical spine and pelvis. Luckily both responded very quickly to a few chiropractic adjustments. Update: his neck is sore again. It all goes back to a whiplash injury ten years ago when he was rammed by a fully laden truck carrying a load of stone. Time for Xrays.
12. Mrs D, a middle aged woman with hip pain of one year duration, despite other treatment. Xrays reveal an impingement syndrome and early hip arthritis. There's much to be done.
13. Both Mrs E and I can't believe how much better her lower back and leg pain are. Surgery for a scoliosis and spondylolysthesis three years ago helped greatly for one year. But then her leg went lame and weak. He was responded extremely well despite all expectations.
And so the day goes. Chiropractors shouldn't be treating the elderly? Bunkum.
Have a problem that's not getting better? Looking for a different slant on your pain? Want to pose a question?
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You helped me quite some time back with a soothing and professional
response which turned out to be exactly correct. I now consult a local chiropractor.
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