Archive for the ‘Gastrointestinal’ Category

VITAMINS AND MINERALS: VITAMIN B3 (NIACIN) & VITAMIN B4 (CHOLINE)

Sunday, May 22nd, 2011
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
Functions:   Health of all cells, essential for digestion (works with enzymes); needed for healthy skin; nerves and sex hormones; cleans out toxins; helps circulation; helpful in allergies and sugar and alcohol cravings
Sources:
Causes of Deficiency:
Deficiency Signs and Symptoms:
Wholegrains, lean meat, liver, poultry, fish, nuts, pulses
Dirty colon, disorders of liver and colon, alcoholism, stress, lack of
Dry lips, fissured tongue, wind, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, anxiety, depression, high blood cholesterol, hardening of the arteries, skin sensitive to sunlight or friction. Severe deficiency: pellagra (rough skin)
Note: This is a very useful supplement for people who are always cold, for chilblains, and as a tranquillizer. There is often a harmless skin prickling or flush after taking it. This does not last long and is good for the circulation. The synthetic vitamin B3 (nicotinamide) does not have this effect; it is also less sedating, and because of this might be more helpful if you are depressed.
Vitamin B4 (Choline)
Functions
Sources:
Causes of Deficiency:
Health of nerves is the main effect; one of the most important messengers in the brain; also necessary for vitamin B4 to work; helps in the breakdown of fat
Egg yolk, liver, brewer’s yeast, wholegrains, lethicin (which has no tranquillizing effect because it contains phosphorus which is a stimulant)
Poor diet
Deficiency Signs and Symptoms: Dizziness, visual problems, nervousness.
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TUMMY TROUBLES: CROHN’S DISEASE

Wednesday, April 29th, 2009

Q. What is this?

A. It is a disorder of the bowel, commonly of the small intestine but often including the colon. It is named after a New York physician, Dr. Burrill Crohn, of the late 1800s, who first described it, calling it regional ileitis. It is common in western countries and is much like ulcerative colitis, producing similar symptoms and also greatly increasing the patient’s risk of bowel cancer, especially if it starts before the age of 21 years.

Q. What are the symptoms?

A. Recurring bouts of pain in the lower abdomen, often worse after meals, loss of weight, diarrhoea, recurring fevers, probably the passage of blood.

Q. How is it diagnosed and treated?

A. The methods for diagnosis include x-rays, the use of the endoscope for the upper small bowel or the colonoscope for the large bowel and taking a biopsy for laboratory confirmation. The bowel is often rigid and thickened and the canal narrowed. Treatment is unsatisfactory and although various drugs such as the corticosteroids, sulfasalazine, azothioprine and others have been used, they are not curative. Surgical treatment may be resorted to if symptoms become intolerable.

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