Nutrition and Biochemistry
Did you know that and estimated 50% of Americans are magnesium deficient? And yet, when was the last time your doctor told you to take more magnesium?
Magnesium is required in over 800 chemical pathways in the body. Likewise, over 600 enzymes require magnesium as a cofactor in order to function. Proper absorption of both vitamin D and calcium, for example, is dependent on sufficient magnesium stores. Without magnesium, excess calcium becomes an inflammatory mediator in the body, increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease, calcification of the arteries and kidney stones. Given the emphasis placed on consuming calcium in our culture, coupled by the fact that 50% of us are unable to absorb this critical nutrient, how many of us are unknowingly adding to our inflammatory burden?
The study of nutrition is really the study of biochemistry. The foods we eat are life-sustaining because they play a part as nutritional cofactors in our bodies. Food is fuel, but it is also the basis for every action and reaction in the body. We cannot talk about the hamburger you ate for dinner without referencing the nutrient density of the meat – what vitamins, minerals, proteins and fats does this meal provide as fuel to our cells? Conversely, what chemicals, pesticides, artificial hormones, colorings, antibiotics, etc. is this hamburger bringing with it, adding to our overall toxic burden? How much additional energy, and what specific nutrients will we need in order to break even, or better yet, to arrive on the other side of our meal with less toxic burden rather than more?
In my practice, I focus on nutritional biochemistry- on how the body uses nutrients to function optimally: to create, protect and repair DNA, to build proteins and manufacture cellular energy, to facilitate cell signaling and the creation of hormones, neurotransmitters, and so much more. Proper nutrition is also essential in healing from any and all chronic illness. This includes a focus on dietary changes, but also supplementing with specific nutrients depending on the individual needs of the person.
Food is medicine, and nutrients are the building blocks of health and wellness.