What supplements do you take for nutrition to get through the day? - page 3

I feel so much better when I take my vitamins. Do you? What do you take? In a nutshell, I take: Mulitple vitamin and mineral QD 1200 mg Calcium with 500 mg of magnesium 120 to 600 mg (the... Read More

  1. by   nightingale
    Brian posted the NPR website (it is on page 1 of this BB) and an article was posted by another poster. Here is that contributors article and website:


    Light at night and working the graveyard shift linked to increased risk of breast cancer
    SEATTLE - Women who work the graveyard shift may face an up to 60 percent increased risk of breast cancer, according to a Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center study.

    Results of the study, the first population-based investigation of the relationship between breast-cancer risk and exposure to light at night as determined by sleep habits, bedroom lighting and graveyard-shift work, will be published tomorrow in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. The NCI funded the study.

    Led by Scott Davis, Ph.D., a member of the Hutchinson Center's Public Health Sciences Division, the study is one of two independent investigations to be published in tomorrow's JNCI that conclude sleep interruption, especially among women who work the night shift, is linked to a significant increase in breast-cancer risk.

    "Although there have been a number of studies looking at the health effects of night-shift work, from heart disease to stomach ailments, this is the first that has looked comprehensively at both graveyard-shift work and light at night as independent risk factors for breast cancer," Davis said.

    The study involved in-person interviews with more than 800 Seattle-area women who had been diagnosed with breast cancer, as well as a similar number of age-matched control subjects. The study assessed exposure to light at night and history of shift work, among other factors, during the 10 years prior to breast-cancer diagnosis.

    Davis and colleagues found that women who worked the graveyard shift at least once during the decade before breast-cancer diagnosis were at approximately 60 percent increased risk for breast cancer compared with those who did not work the graveyard shift. In addition, the risk of breast cancer significantly increased with each additional hour per week of graveyard-shift work.

    The link between sleep, light at night and breast cancer may involve melatonin, a hormone produced by the brain's pineal gland. Production of melatonin peaks at night during sleep. One theory is that nighttime sleep deprivation or exposure to light at night somehow interrupts melatonin production, which in turn stimulates the ovaries to kick out extra estrogen - a known hormonal promoter of breast cancer.

    Indirect support of the melatonin/breast cancer connection comes from an earlier study of blind women, who were found to have a 20 percent to 50 percent reduced risk of breast cancer as compared to a comparison group of women diagnosed with stroke and cardiovascular disease. The theory behind this reduced risk: Because blind women are immune to fluctuations in light, their melatonin levels remain constant, which also keeps their circulating estrogen levels in check.

    Davis and colleagues found that breast-cancer risk was associated with the number of years of shift work and the number of hours per week of working the graveyard shift. For example, women who logged at least four and a half years of frequent night-shift work - during which they were awake at least three nights per week between 1 and 2 a.m., when nocturnal melatonin levels are typically at their peak - experienced a twofold increased risk of breast cancer. Similarly, cancer risk increased by 14 percent for each night per week of wakefulness during this crucial time period.

    There was also some indication - although not statistically significant - of increased breast-cancer risk among the women who had the brightest bedrooms. The degree of ambient bedroom light was based on self-reported recall, such as whether the room was so dark a woman could not see her hand in front of her face or whether she could see to the end of her bed. There was, however, no increased cancer risk associated with getting up at night and turning on a light, such as when using the bathroom.

    So what's the upshot of these findings regarding light at night, graveyard-shift work and breast cancer?

    "We'd be premature to make recommendations about specific interventions or behavior modifications for people with average light-at-night exposure," said Davis, also professor and chairman of the Department of Epidemiology at the University of Washington School of Public Health and Community Medicine in Seattle. "More important from a research point of view is to focus on the general notion that anything that disrupts the normal circadian biology of the body might affect hormones that influence cancer risk."

    Take stress, for example. Could the inherent stress of shift work - independent of nocturnal light exposure - also cause the fluctuation of certain key hormones?

    "Among shift workers, quite a number of factors could affect the mechanisms that control the body's circadian rhythms," Davis said. "One is stress, considering the kinds of jobs that require shift work, from police, fire and rescue work to nuclear-power-plant monitoring to factory work, medicine and nursing."

    To better gauge the impact of shift work on the body's hormones, Davis and colleagues are planning a study to look at the effects of circadian disruption on the production of melatonin and estrogen.

    "Our next step will be to compare these hormone levels among night-shift nurses and day-shift nurses. We need to measure the specific biological effects of shift work, because right now, the connection between working nights and decreased melatonin/increased estrogen has yet to be shown in humans."

    Editor's note: To arrange an interview with Davis, the study's lead author, or to obtain a copy of the paper "Night Shift Work, Light at Night, and Risk of Breast Cancer" (JNCI, Vol. 93, No. 20, Oct. 17, pp. 1557-1562) call Kristen Woodward in Hutchinson Center Media Relations, (206) 667-5095 or e-mail kwoodwar@fhcrc.org.

    Brad.. thank you for your offer... I will take you up on that sometime soon..... I will look for that Herbal Book on Amazon.com...


  2. by   nightingale
    I knew I would come up with a question for you Brad. Here tis the question; I have read that those insulin burning foods that raise and lower cholesterol like rice will make you crave sweets, what supplements can you recommend to counter-act that?

    Also wanted to add to those who like to read a book recommendation that is so wonderful for healthy style eating habits. The book is called, "Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy" by Walter Willett, M.D. It was written in development with the Harvard School of Public Health. It contains information that is based on studies! It is so wonderful. I consider myself up on some of the latest info on nutrition and this book taught me plenty of new documented studies.

    Last edit by nightingale on Jan 3, '02
  3. by   RNKitty
    Originally posted by Slowone
    Anybody tried Metabolife356 for "energy" or weight loss? Just wondering, I have a friend taking it and swears by it. HMMM?
    My husband, bless him, is always looking for the quick and easy way to lose weight. He bought some Metabolife, and I looked at what it contained. If I remember right, it had caffeine and ephedra. Now if ephedra is anything similar to ephedrine (sympathomimetic), I would be VERY cautious about using it. I threw away his bottle of pills.
  4. by   Whisper
    Wow, you guys seem very health concerned. I only take vitamins, if I have missed more than one meal in a day, or if I am ill, and then they are only the multi-vitamins from the supermarket!

    But the things I swear by are Coffee and Nutri grain bars. I couldn't get through the day without them
  5. by   Mkue
    My husband bought me some GNC Women's ultra mega vitamins before Christmas.

    Thought he was trying to kill me..lol.. They must contain alot of caffeine or something !

    Anyway it was a nice thought.

  6. by   Toad
    I follow Dr. Andrew Weil's recommendations for suppliments and lifestyle. (Well, at least I try!!)

    Anyone else?
  7. by   RNKitty
    I enjoy Dr. Weil and have read many of his books. Yes, he does have good recommendations. I used to like his web site, but he changed it and now I find it hard to get the info I need.
  8. by   Peeps Mcarthur
    The study cited about a possible link between the interruption of Melatonin production and breast cancer is interesting.
    I suggest to all the night-shifters to reset their circadian rhythms with a Melatonin replacement when they come to me with complaints of interrupted sleep patterns. You can get it at any healthfood store as far as I'm aware. Just take it about an hour before you hit the sack and you will not only sleep like a baby(a well behaved baby) but you'll be refreshed instead of those "ragged edges". I wish I had known about it when I was doing nights.
    As a person ages, Melatonin production decreases. That should be taken into account if you are planning to use it on a regular basis. I'm 40 and still only use it ocassionaly. For persons in their twenties I never recomend it unless they are on a consistant night-shift schedule. I don't think it's prudent, for example, that someone younger that would be on a rotating or infrequent shift schedule would take it at all.

    Anyhoooo, I think the next logical study would be one about the effects of Melatonin replacement possibly lowering the incidence of breast cancer in night shift workers. From what I'm getting out of the study it seems where they are leaning with the findings anyway.
  9. by   Peeps Mcarthur
    There is a combination of nutrients you can get to combat PMS at General Nutrition Centers.
    I don't usually have a very long conversation with this type of customer "It's over there lady.....please don't hurt me"..LOL
    Consequently I don't get much feedback from them either so I haven't had reports of its efficacy. Black Cohosh is approved by German Comission E (a regulatory agency in europe where herbs are more widely used and accepted) for premenstral discomfort and dysmenorrhea. There are other herbs cited but not approved by comission E but it's best not to "go chasing your tail" as it's put, with hormones involved. My advice is to try Black Cohosh by itself and then try a combination supplement if the effect is just not acceptable.
    I've seen St. Jhons wort treat mild depression but reports of difficulties in getting the effective dosage consistantly make me feel that its metabolism varies from one individual to the next and that worries me. If your depression is affecting day to day activities the hell with the supplements, go see someone. There's no shame in admitting you have a possible psychological imbalance. Heck, if your a nurse at the bedside these days it's quite possible.
    As for energy and weight loss(maybe related to depression?) I always recommend to my customers to examine their sleep patterns and diet before we go off into B vitamins and stimulants. After that angle has been examined I need to know if you're a coffee drinker and if not, do you avoid it because it makes you heart flutter or race. If you avoid coffee, tea or softdrinks for that reason then I recomend you use a meal replacement only. If caffeine doesn't affect you that way and you don't have high blood pressure I don't see a thing wrong with Metabolife or any other "metabolism enhancer" IN MODERATION. More is not better. Read the lable and find out if it contains L-Tyrosine. That amino acid is a precursor to neurotransmitters and would be contraindicated(I just love that word) in persons taking MAO inhibitors(old school antidepressants). It's not a matter to be taken lightly but in conjunction with DIET AND EXCERCISE it can help you reach your goals, otherwise it's just a stimulant so why bother? The meal replacement from Scan-Diet has a soy based protien and fiber. I recomend it for replacement between sensible whole food meals but not entirely in lieu of them.

    For the immune system I think it's a matter of sleep patterns, proper diet, mild excercise, and a quality multivitamin. There are supplements such as Echinachea which MAY (I dislike that word) increase the number of circulating leukocytes, enhance phagocytosis and stimulate cytokine production. Those with autoimmune diseases, of course, should avoid use.
    That being said, unless you happen to have a blood lab in your basement how would you know if you were recieving benefit from it? What the hey, can't hurt I suppose.

    Now let me know if you use my recomendations. I rely on feedback more than what I find in the claims of the plethora of herbal remedy books.

    Last edit by Peeps Mcarthur on Jan 4, '02
  10. by   teeituptom
    Howdy yall again
    Ive always worked night shift and always will till I die,more than likely.And if there is something you can say about night shifters,that is for the most part they have terrible eating habits.More pizza is consumed by night shifters than anything else. However for myself years ago, got into better eating.
    I believe in a good multivitamin, lots of coffee,the stronger the better.I hate it when day shift gets there and puts on their colored water version of coffee. I also bring trail mix type combinations, I have my own dehydrator, to save money. and for protein I dearly love venison or ostrich burgers, good protein but very low in fat. Best served with my home made pickles and or jalapenos. So I eat very well. And I no longer eat the junk all those younger people do. But you always need good strong coffee to wash it down at night.
  11. by   semstr
    Hi Brad,

    You asked for a feedback, here we go.

    I use Echinacea drops 2x 30 every day for 2 weeks and then I pause for 1 and start again. I was told to take these drops this way by a homopatic MD (as you stated, here in Austria and Germany we use a lot of "old fashioned" herbs and stuff in the hospital too)
    But Echinacea won't do you any good against the real bad bugs, it works perfect against viral infections though.

    As for the st. John (that is what I meant in my post,could have guessed the name in English, LOL) I tried the 450 mg and that was too much for me (I am petit, as you call it, I weigh 90 (european) pounds at a length of 1.54 (5.1?)) I couldn't sleep and got heartsensations, now I am on 300 mg. and that is perfect for me.
    i only use it in winter, when the days are dark and wet and cold and brgggghhhhhhh.................
    I also bought myself a special lamp, which should do the trick too, but my eyes got inflamed, so the lamp is gone.

    I am not really depressed though, I would go and see a doctor then, it's just I hate winter and my mood is down to or below my shoes.
    Accept when we go skiing on a beautiful sunny day!!!
    But since we've got some work to do, that not so often.

    As for the PMS and postmenopausal treatment, we use something called "Motherherbs". No idea of the real latin name, I'll try to find out.
    Any way that works fine and a lot of my friends use this and are happy with it.

    Take care, Renee
  12. by   ZAROZINIA
    Hi everyone,
    Icant believe how many tablets everyone takes. I hate taking tablets. I take multivitamins and iron some of the time and yes I do feel better for it and suffer less minor illnesses.
    I try to eat healthy, but I love food. Im not overweight. I balance a pizza/ chocolate binge with a lowfat/ veggie/ fruit binge.
    I try to fit in exercise, but with working rotating 12 hour shifts and looking after my 2 year old daughter this is not as regular as in the past.
    I couldnt face doing a drug round in my own home aswell as at work, LOL.
    I suffer from supra ventricular tachycardia, which occurs more frequently if I dont eat well( dieting), dont get enough sleep, overdo things, get dehydrated due to no time to drink at work( Im sure youve all experienced this), drink too much alcohol, take caffiene. So I try to do everything in moderation. Unfortunately I rotate onto nights, sometimes days and nights every week, as at present and it occurs frequently. Its happenned twice this week. Im not keen on the surgery- catheter ablation of the offending cells, but will consider it if it affects me frequently. I was put on Atenolol but it dropped my blood pressure too much and as Ive said I dont like taking tablets. I started to get into aromatherapy a few years ago and read about essential oil of roman chamomile. When ever I get SVT I smell roman chamomile oil and it stops within 10 seconds, unless I have a cold then it doesnt work. I started drinking camomile tea and it happenned even less. I cant drink caffiene as this can start it off within minutes, I must be hypersensitive to it. Anyway I do believe in helping people with natural remedies and generally looking after yourself.
  13. by   semstr
    o yes, camomile is great!
    We use it a lot here, especially in homecare and in peds and geriatrics.
    We use it for mildly inflamed wounds, after surgery, especially after analsurgery and after gyn. operations.

    As for aromatherapy, a lot of ICU's work with it to influence breathing paterns and to relax the patients (and the families!)
    they use spike-oil in combination with mint-oil.

    Something good for your tummy? Use mallow-tea (my dictionary translated this for me, it is absolutely different from the German name: Ksepappel )

    Another desinfectant we use a lot, even instead of iodine or something like that, is Teatree-oil. Even on ortho. they use this!

    Take care, Renee