Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Low Vitamin D Levels and Cognitive Decline in the Aging Process

Extra Vitamin D Pays Off Big Time During the Aging Process

It is well known that vitamin D is essential for maintaining healthy muscles and bone, and plays significant roles in the immune system and cardiovascular function. More and more research is showing that it plays a significant role in supporting healthy brain function.

A study published in The Journal of Gerontology included 1,202 Chinese adults over the age of 60. Baseline levels of vitamin D were measured at the beginning of the study, and cognitive tests were administered over 2 years.

Regardless of the age or gender of the subjects, individuals with lower vitamin D levels at the start of the study were approximately twice as likely to have significant cognitive decline over time. In addition, low vitamin D levels at baseline also increased the risk of future cognitive impairment by 2-3 times.

This was the first large-scale prospective study in Asia to study the association between vitamin D status and risk of cognitive decline and impairment in the Chinese elderly.

The results of this study give support to the idea that vitamin D is neuroprotective by supporting healthy brain aging, and improved vitamin D status may be beneficial in supporting healthy cognitive function in aging populations.

Matchar DB, Chei CL, Yin ZX, et al. Vitamin D Levels and the Risk of Cognitive Decline in Chinese Elderly People: the Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Survey. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2016;71(10):1363-8.

Note:  Article produced by USANA: 

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Five Tips for Healthy Hair and Nails


This is by no means a comprehensive overview of nails and health. And, there are numerous factors that affect hair and nails, including environment, genetics, medications, trauma, and diet. But, I hope you find this interesting and informative.

The average human with a full head of hair contains between 85,000 to 150,000 hairs.
It's normal to lose 50 to 100 hairs a day but anyone who notices thinning hair should see a dermatologist.

Hairstyles that pull the hair, like ponytails and braids, can cause hair loss.
Fingernails grow 0.1 millimeters each day and toenails grow 1 millimeter a month. Fingernails grow faster than toenails, and nails grow faster in a warmer climate than in a colder climate.

Omega-3s from salmon, mackerel, anchovies and sardines are beneficial for your overall health, but your body also needs them to grow hair and keep it shiny and full.

Protein, containing all the essential amino acids, provides the building block of your hair and nails. By the way, it is not true that gelatin (either eating it or soaking nails in it) are great for your nails. Gelatin is a protein, but is not of very good quality and is considered incomplete (missing one or more essential amino acids). Any other complete protein source would provide better nutrient support for your nails and hair than gelatin (despite the marketing on gelatin packaging).

Along with very low protein, a severely calorie-restricted diet can also cause temporary hair loss.
Cells that build hair rely on zinc to help them work their hardest.

Foods and activities that increase blood flow, or circulation, help bring oxygen and nutrients to your hair follicles.

Your body turns beta carotene into vitamin A. That helps protect against dry, dull hair. It also encourages the glands in your scalp to make an oily fluid called sebum.

When you don't get enough protein, hair growth "rests" and older hairs fall out, which can result in excessive hair loss.

Getting too little iron can lead to hair loss. You can find this important nutrient in fortified cereal, grains, and pastas, and in soybeans and lentils, and dark green leafy vegetables (note: spinach is not a good source of iron. Only about 1% of the iron in spinach is bioavailable because it is tied up by the high level of oxalates contained in spinach. It also binds most of the calcium).

Vitamin A (or beta-carotene), iron, folate, and vitamin C work together for a healthy scalp and hair. They help keep the scalp and hair moisturized so it doesn't break.

Two other B vitamins, pantothenic acid (B5) and biotin, play important roles in hair health, and deficiencies of either can affect hair health or cause hair loss.

Most vitamin deficiencies can lead to hair loss. All the vitamins and minerals are important, but that doesn't mean that you necessarily need to buy special supplements for your hair or nails. Of course there are exceptions, but eating a healthy mixed diet, taking a quality multivitamin/mineral supplement, getting adequate hydration, protein and calories will generally provide all the nutrients you need to support healthy nails and hair.

Visit our other pages:

From Deanna:  Personally, I am thankful for USANA's CellSentials and Health Pak, since both provide a wide variety of essential nutrients for healthy hair and nails.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Coenzyme Q10 Supplementation and Male Fertility

Previous research has shown that Coenzyme Q10 is present in measurable levels in human seminal fluid, where it most likely exerts important metabolic and antioxidant functions.

In a paper published in Fertility and Sterility, researchers evaluated the effectiveness of CoQ10 treatment in improving semen quality in men with idiopathic infertility. Idiopathic infertility is defined as infertility without a defined or known cause.

The placebo-controlled, double-blind randomized trial included 60 male infertility patients aged 27-39 years. The participants took either 200 mg/day of CoQ10 (ubiquinone) or a placebo for 6 months, with 3 months of follow-up.

Coenzyme Q10 and ubiquinol increased significantly in both seminal plasma and sperm cells after treatment, as well as increasing sperm motility. Patients with lower baseline values of sperm motility and CoQ10 levels had a greater likelihood of responding positively to the treatment.

Coenzyme Q10 supplementation increases the level of ubiquinone and ubiquinol in semen and is effective in improving sperm motility in patients affected by unexplained infertility.

Balercia G, Buldreghini E, Vignini A, et al. Coenzyme Q10 treatment in infertile men with idiopathic asthenozoospermia: a placebo-controlled, double-blind randomized trial. Fertil Steril. 2009;91(5):1785-92.

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Tuesday, November 15, 2016

5 Health Benefits of Practicing Gratitude (And How to Start Today!)

Written by November 4, 2016 in Health & Fitness 

5 Health Benefits of Practicing Gratitude (And How to Start Today!) // What's Up, USANA?

Since November is the month of giving thanks in the United States, I thought this subject of gratitude and well-being would be a great idea for the blog.  Little did I know just how much information on gratitude and health was out there.  Gratitude not only has the power to change our day, but research also shows it has some amazing benefits for our health.
“Showing gratitude is one of the simplest yet most powerful things humans can do for each other,” Randy Paul said in his memoir, The Last Lecture.
Over the last few years, I have seen a challenge pop up during November on social media.  In this challenge, you write every day in November about one thing you’re grateful for. Many people write about family, friends, traditions, and health.  By the time you’re done reading this post, you might just convince yourself to give it a try—and not only for this month but for the rest of the year!

How does gratitude affect our health?

  1. Gratitude can improve physical health. People who are grateful are more likely to take care of their physical health.  They exercise more, are more likely to attend regular check-ups, and they experience fewer aches and pains.
  2. Gratitude can improve relationships. A study of couples found that individuals who took the time to express gratitude for their partner not only felt more positive toward the other person but also felt more comfortable expressing concerns about their relationship. [1]
  3. Gratitude can reduce stress. If you experience high levels of stress, combat it with gratitude.  This WebMD article states “Gratitude, it turns out, can help us better manage stress.” Gratitude research is beginning to suggest that feelings of thankfulness have tremendous positive value in helping people cope with daily problems, especially stress,” Emmons says.
  4. Gratitude helps with sleep. A study found that individuals who kept a daily gratitude journal at night reported half an hour more sleep than the control group. Focusing on things we’re grateful for before we go to bed instead of focusing on our worries will lead to an easier time falling and staying asleep. [2]
  5. Gratitude will make you happier. When you acknowledge the good things you have in your life, it helps you connect to something larger than yourself. In positive psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships. [3]
With all the benefits that gratitude can have in our lives, it’s important that we try to foster an attitude of gratitude every day.

How do we cultivate gratitude?

  • Keeping a journal.  One study found subjects who wrote down one item that they were grateful for every day reported being 25 percent happier for a full six months after following this practice for just three weeks!
  • Show people you appreciate them.  Be sincere and specific when you say “thank you” to someone.  Recognize the work others do and let them know how it has helped you.  Thank you notes can be a fun way to communicate this, and you’ll find the more you write, the more detailed your thank-you notes will become.
  • Talk with friends or family. When talking with your family, ask them what the best part of their day was.  What made them happy?  Making gratitude a discussion can help promote positive connections and community.
  • Meditate. Meditation is a great way to help calm your mind and think on things you are grateful for.  Even if it’s just for five minutes, try to focus on your day and what you’re thankful to have.
  • Make a gratitude board.  What’s a gratitude board, you ask?  It’s similar to a vision board, but the purpose is to use images that depict what you’re grateful for.  Find sayings that reflect gratitude and include pictures of family members and activities you love.
That was a lot of information, so just to recap:

 Gratitude can influence how well we take care of our physical health, improve our relationships, reduce stress levels, help us sleep better, and make us happier.

After researching these benefits of gratitude I will be challenging myself to appreciate others more and show gratitude.  For starters, I’m grateful for this USANA family and the amazing community everyone has built together.
Now, how about that 30-day challenge?

What are you grateful for?

Thursday, November 3, 2016

Do You Know Which Substances and Foods are Toxic to Your Health?

How Do I Know Which Substances are Toxic?

How Do I Know Which Substances are Toxic? // What's Up, USANA?
Editor’s Note: Check out the Ask The Scientists blog for more articles like this!

Toxic or Not?

The plant in the picture is natural, beautiful, and yet its seeds contain ricin, one of the world’s most lethal toxins.
Toxicity is one of the least understood concepts in popular health information, and you are constantly bombarded by sensational and inaccurate information. I know, because I consistently get questions stemming from this messy topic. So, let’s start with a quiz. Of these 10 items, how many are toxic?
  1. Water
  2. Oxygen
  3. The sun
  4. Titanium dioxide
  5. Iron
  6. Cyanide
  7. Alcohol
  8. Vitamin A
  9. Formaldehyde
  10. Chocolate
The answer to all of them is: it depends.
Whether something is toxic or not depends on the dosage, the route of exposure, and sometimes, the length of exposure.
Be aware that just because two chemicals sound the same, does not mean they have similar safety characteristics (propylene glycol and ethylene glycol as an example). And just because something is “almost” the same structure, does not make it similar. Water is H2O, and adding a single oxygen makes is H2O2, or hydrogen peroxide.


We all know we’re supposed to drink plenty of clean water. Without adequate hydration you will die. But, if you inhale it, it can be deadly. There are also cases of death related to intake of too much water too fast.


We need a certain level of oxygen in the air we breathe to survive. The mixture in the atmosphere is about 20%, along with nitrogen and other gases. But, breathing pure oxygen too long can cause cell damage and death, especially in the central nervous system, lungs and eyes.


Obviously we need the sun to survive, for many reasons. And an adequate level of exposure to sunlight is the primary source of vitamin D for most people on earth. On the other hand, solar radiation is a class 1 carcinogen, meaning it is known to cause cancer.

Titanium dioxide

Too much lung exposure to nanoparticles can cause cancer. This is typically associated with inhalation due to industrial chronic exposure. It is not absorbed orally or dermally, and is basically inert through those routes of exposure.


Iron is an essential mineral absolutely necessary for survival. It is also one of the top causes of poisoning deaths among children.


We all know cyanide can be deadly. But small amounts are easily complexed and excreted through the urine, and it does not accumulate. And that is good, because many healthy foods contain cyanide: spinach, bamboo shoots, flax seeds, cassava, and others.

Alcohol (ethanol)

Moderate intakes may be beneficial for health, yet it is also classified as a class 1 carcinogen.

Vitamin A

Excessive amounts can be toxic to the liver, yet vitamin A deficiency is the leading cause of childhood blindness in the world. By the way, toxic effects of vitamin A are not known to occur in adults with intakes below about 25,000-30,000 IU. The upper limit of 10,000 IU, especially during pregnancy, takes into consideration a huge margin of safety. Vitamin A is not nearly as toxic as it is often implied.


Also a class 1 carcinogen, but you may not be aware that formaldehyde is found in significant dosages in many fruits, berries, seafood and mushrooms. In addition, formaldehyde is involved with methylation reactions and biosynthesis of some proteins and nucleic acids in the body and is a normal constituent in our blood.


With the exception of gaining weight, too much chocolate won’t do you any harm. However, it can be highly toxic to dogs and some other animals. The point is, that just because a specific poison works to kill a plant or an insect, does not automatically mean it is poisonous to humans.

Propylene glycol and ethylene glycol

Propylene glycol is absorbed and metabolized rapidly in the liver to lactic acid and pyruvic acid (normal components of the citric acid cycle) and then further to carbon dioxide and water. On the other hand, ethylene glycol is acutely toxic and can severely damage the kidneys.

Don’t judge a substance by its name

A statement I’ve heard consistently over the past 35 years. “If you can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it.” The length or complexity of a name has no relation whatsoever to its safety, function or benefit. Nor does the fact that it is natural or synthetic. Simple to pronounce Polonium 210 is deadly at dosages of less than 1 billionth of a gram. While the scary sounding chemical 2-methyl-3-[(2E)-3,7,11,15-tetramethylhexadec-2-en-1-yl]naphthoquinone is also known as Vitamin K.

What do we do now?

I hope this helps illustrate that “toxic” is a relative term. Most healthy substances are potentially toxic, and most “toxic” substances are potentially harmless. It’s the dose, route of exposure, and length of time exposed and other factors that is the difference between harmless and harmful.
Yes, we are exposed to a lot of various toxic and unhealthy compounds as a part of normal life, which is part of the reason it is important to exercise and get sufficient nutrients through diet and supplement to support the function of our lungs, liver and kidneys (our normal routes of detoxification).
We’re proud to bring you the freshest content on the web! Follow USANA on Twitter, like our USANA Facebook page and enjoy the latest videos on the official USANA YouTube channel.
USANA True Health FoundationLearn what USANA is doing to make the world a better place.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Tips to Support Your Immune System

With winter coming and students back at school, flues and colds begin to spread throughout halls and families.  The following article gives great tips to build your immune system and avoid time suffering away from work and school.  Deanna Waters

Written by October 26, 2016 in Health & Fitness 
Tips to Support Your Immune System // What's Up, USANA?

Support Your Immune System

It’s that time of year when we all start feeling a little worn down and stressed. Why not find an immune support supplement that is designed to help you stay at your best even during times of occasional stress?

Effective Ingredients

Below are a few active ingredients you should look for when looking for an immune support supplement with great overall health benefits:
  • Reishi (ganoderma lucidum) and shiitake (lentinula edodes) mushrooms have been used in traditional Chinese medicines to support vitality. They are rich in polysaccharides with immunomodulation properties to help promote cellular protection.
  • Beta-glucans (often found in baker’s yeast) are a specific type of complex carbohydrate that help prime our immune cells to work faster and more efficiently.
  • Zinc is an essential trace element that supports proper functioning of immune cells and serves as an intracellular signaling molecule, enhancing the effectiveness of the beta-glucans. It also acts as an antioxidant to help defend against oxidative stress.
Our lives can be incredibly demanding, which is why we have to be aware of how our bodies respond to the stresses of daily life. That’s what makes these specific nutrients great—and why we’re proud to combine them effectively in our newest supplement.

Together, they can prime your immune cells’ natural protective responses, so they can support your health effectively. USANA’s Proglucamune™ helps protect your health and well-being every day by using our Patent-Pending USANA InCelligence Technology™ to bind to receptors on immune cells, putting them on high alert and helping them adapt to your unique needs.
Support Your Immune System with Proglucamune // What's Up, USANA?

Healthy Actions to Take

Below are other simple things you can do to help your immune system this busy holiday season:
  1. Get plenty of quality sleep
  2. Wash your hands regularly
  3. Keep a healthy weight
  4. Exercise daily
  5. Take your vitamins
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
We’re proud to bring you the freshest content on the web! Follow USANA on Twitter, like our USANA Facebook page and enjoy the latest videos on the official USANA YouTube channel.
USANA True Health FoundationLearn what USANA is doing to make the world a better place.
The future of personalized health and nutrition is now available with USANA’s True Health Assessment.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Do You Have A Healthy Gut? Here's How to Achieve That!

This article is a MUST to read, concerning a healthy gut.  Otherwise, many problems can occur when we take digestion for granted and problems occur.

Tips for a Healthy Gut

Written by November 23, 2015 in Dr. Oz, Health & Fitness with 1 Comment

Last Updated 10/21/16
This time of year we tend to focus more attention on holiday entertaining and indulging in calorie-dense foods and beverages and less on healthy eating and exercise.

Have you ever given much thought to how your body digests food? Do you have a well-functioning digestive system?

With the holidays fast approaching, this may be a good time to assess your digestive health so you can maintain a healthy gut.

Here are the basics—the food you eat is a diverse mixture of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats as well as vitamins, minerals, and other phytonutrients. The function of your digestive system is to break down this diverse combination so the nutrients can provide nourishment and energy throughout your body.

Since you need a variety of nutrients, your digestive system takes these whole foods and breaks them down into small molecules, using a variety of mechanical methods and enzyme-containing digestive juices. You absorb these molecules through the walls of your small intestine and into the bloodstream where they are transported throughout your body to be used for energy, growth, and tissue repair.
StomachUnfortunately, as we age, the digestive process may become less efficient, leading to potential nutrient deficiencies. Maintaining health depends in part on a well-functioning digestive system.

5 Tips to Help Support Healthy Digestion

1: Chew your food thoroughly. Saliva moistens food particles and provides enzymes to start the process of starch and fat digestion. Chewing also signals the production of stomach acid and sets the pancreas and other support organs in motion to prepare to secrete enzymes into the small intestine.

2: An adequate amount of stomach acid is required to break down proteins. A decrease in stomach acid production can become more common as we age, and a variety of diseases and certain medications may also inhibit sufficient stomach acid production, including the overuse of antacids. Use antacids as directed and only when needed.

3: Some studies have shown that the production of pancreatic enzymes may decrease as you get older. Fortunately there are comprehensive enzyme supplements available to help with an age-related decline. However, do not kid yourself—supplementing with digestive enzymes will not make up for overindulging in unhealthy foods. Try starting your meal with fresh fruit or a salad, as fiber is also important for digestive health.
Food Allergies4: Eliminate foods you are allergic or sensitive to. Allergens can cause an immune response that triggers inflammation in the intestinal tract, which may interrupt the digestive process. Getting rid of these foods will help maintain a healthy environment in your GI tract.

5: And finally, especially during this time of year, commit to managing stress effectively. Research has shown that the intestines respond negatively to stress, which may impact the digestive process. Participating in regular exercise and eating meals at regular times in a relaxed environment may help decrease stress levels.
Understanding causes of digestive issues, how to reduce symptoms, and supplementing with a comprehensive digestive enzyme product as appropriate, will help most people enjoy this wonderful holiday season.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
We’re proud to bring you the freshest content on the web! Follow USANA on Twitter, like our USANA Facebook page and enjoy the latest videos on the official USANA YouTube channel.
USANA True Health FoundationLearn what USANA is doing to make the world a better place.
The future of personalized health and nutrition is now available with USANA’s True Health Assessment.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

What You Should Know About the Science of Cell Signaling

Infographic: The Science of Cell Signaling

Written by September 21, 2016

Have you heard about cell signaling? It sounds kind of complicated—in fact, if you Google it, you’ll get some confusing results.

But the basic concept is simple. All you really need to remember is that everything you put in your body is basically information for your cells. Intrigued? Check out the infographic below. It explains how nutrition affects cell signaling, and why that’s important.

This infographic was designed by Parrin Habibpour and inspired by a magazine story written by Matt Jaggi and Dr. Kevin Spelman.

(From Deanna Waters - This is about the new breakthrough science at USANA, called InCelligence Technology.  What a powerful gift to your trillions of cells!)

Cell Signaling Infographic

Saturday, September 17, 2016

5 Reasons Why You Need More Fiber in Your Diet

 Written by Austin Catmull June 23, 2016

Fiber. Maybe you’ve heard it in conversations lately, or maybe you haven’t. (Believe me, it’s a pretty hot topic in the nutrition space.)

Whether you talk about Fiber or not, the bottom line is that most people need to increase their fiber intake to hit the recommended levels. Adequate dietary fiber levels for adults is 25 to 38 grams per day. Are your dietary habits within that range?

Higher amounts of fiber can be found in plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, and seeds. With the busy lives we lead, it can sometimes be challenging to get enough fiber from our food choices alone. Fortunately, USANA has an excellent fiber product called MySmart™Shake Fibergy Plus to help boost your fiber intake.

Let’s discuss some reasons why adequate fiber is an important diet goal and what some of the main benefits are.

Keeping it Regular

Alright. First thing’s first. Bowel regularity. There, I said it. Now let’s talk about it.
Fiber aids in normal bowel regularity, which helps move wastes and toxins out of the colon quickly and efficiently. If you don’t eat enough fiber or drink enough fluids, you could experience bowel irregularity (constipation). Not good.*

Growing up, my mother always referred to this concept as eating enough “roughage.” I won’t go into all of the details of those conversations, but the idea stuck with me. We need to eat foods high in fiber that will help clear us out and keep us healthy.*

This is probably the main concept that comes to mind when you think about fiber, but there are many other benefits too.

Get Both Types

Diets high in soluble and insoluble fiber are important for digestive health. But what does that mean? What is “soluble” and “insoluble” fiber?

SOLUBLE FIBER can be found in foods like oatmeal, nuts, beans, and fruit. It absorbs water and turns into gel in the digestive tract. This helps soften stool, making it easier to pass. Soluble fiber also has great benefits for heart health.

INSOLUBLE FIBER can be found in foods like whole-grains and vegetables. This type of fiber helps promote regularity. It also helps control hunger pangs, which we’ll discuss in more detail below.
Fibergy Plus contains a blend of both soluble and insoluble fiber, so we’ve got you covered.
MySmart Fibergy Plus

Protect Your Most Important Muscle

Nope. I’m not talking about your biceps. Not your pectorals. Not even your glutes. Your HEART is the aim here.

Fiber not only promotes good digestive health but it is also important for the maintenance of heart health. Specifically, soluble fiber binds to cholesterol and helps remove it from the body.*

The FDA states that low-fat diets, rich in fiber-containing grain products, fruits, and vegetables, may reduce the risk of some types of cancer, a disease associated with many factors.*

The heart is one of the hardest working muscles in your body, so boost that fiber intake so you can take care of it better, and it will take care of you.

Feed Your Microbiome

Feed my what?! Don’t get freaked out. You may have heard about this. You have trillions of bacteria in your body at all times called the “microbiome.” In fact, many types of microbes are good for your body and even essential for basic functions like digestion.

You need to eat foods high in fiber to support these tiny, helpful organisms living within your body if you want to maximize the benefits they provide. Dr. Rhonda Patrick is a huge proponent to getting plenty of fiber in your diet to support these microbes:

“You also need to consume enough fiber on a regular basis so that the microbiome in your system is fed regularly. Most foods we eat (fats, proteins) are digested and absorbed fairly early on in the digestive tract. The microbiome is near the end of the digestive cycle, and they need food high in fiber that will make it to them.”

Feel Fuller Longer

Aside from these important benefits listed above, did you know that eating foods high in fiber actually helps you feel fuller, longer?

Do you find yourself snacking a lot throughout the day? If those are healthy snacks, like fruits and vegetables, then that probably isn’t a bad thing. But those healthy choices aren’t always within reach, so you might find yourself grabbing a sugar-filled option instead.

Try eating foods high in fiber during your main meals, and see if that impacts your snacking habits. Also, consider adding MySmart Fibergy Plus to drinks or even incorporating it in the food you eat. The high fiber content will leave you feeling satisfied, making it easier to skip unhealthy snacks throughout the day.MySmart Fibergy Plus
Eating a diet high in fiber should be a priority on your Nutrition To-Do List. To ensure you’re hitting those fiber goals, MySmart Fibergy Plus is a great addition to keep on-hand. You can easily add it to juice, drinks, and MySmartShakes to get the benefits of having sufficient fiber in your daily diet.

How do you make sure that you’re getting enough fiber? What are some tasty ways that you add Fibergy to your recipes for a fiber boost?

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
We’re proud to bring you the freshest content on the web! Follow USANA on Twitter, like our USANA Facebook page and enjoy the latest videos on the official USANA YouTube channel.
USANA True Health FoundationLearn what USANA is doing to make the world a better place.

Friday, September 9, 2016

New Era in Nutritional Science Adapts to Your Specific Needs

A New Era of Nutritional Science

Since the introduction of the USANA® Essentials in 1992, USANA has set the standard for excellence in science-based nutrition and wellness products. InCelligence is the next revolution in creating optimal health through products that help your body adapt to your unique needs.*

Led by the visionary Dr. Myron Wentz, our in-house research and development team has integrated advances in the sciences of molecular biology and cell signaling with our expert knowledge of cellular nutrition to develop InCelligence Technology.

Research Resources

These downloadable resources provide additional information about InCelligence Technology and products. Check back here for updates as more studies and information are added.

InCelligence White Paper
InCelligence References
Sanoviv CellSentials Biochemical Marker Evaluation
CellSentials Safety and Quality of Life Survey
Hepasil DTX™ Increases Antioxidant and Detoxification Capacity by Boosting Glutathione and Vitamin C (2)

Research Partners

In addition to ongoing in-house studies, USANA continues to partner with respected research institutions to discover new frontiers of this exciting new science.

Ben A. Bahr, Ph.D., University of North Carolina – Pembroke
Sanoviv Medical Institute

Patents (pending or provisional)

  • Compositions for Upregulating Endogenous Antioxidant Systems
  • Methods and Compositions for Reducing Damage Associated with Oxidative Phosphorylation

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Source: USANA Health Sciences

For further information:  Deanna Waters 

Tuesday, August 30, 2016


USANA Health and Science Education
July 26 ·

I have a couple of thoughts before moving on with this. First of all, if you are on warfarin, talk to your doctor before starting a supplement with vitamin K or drastically changing your diet. And, the only blood thinner that has any relation to vitamin K is warfarin (Coumadin). Other blood thinners work by different mechanisms and are unaffected by vitamin K intake.

Recent evidence clearly indicates that vitamin K is crucial not only for proper regulation of blood clotting, but also for optimal bone and cardiovascular health.

One of the most common (and lifesaving, I must add) medications in use is the blood thinner warfarin (Coumadin). Unfortunately, because warfarin works by inhibiting the actions of vitamin K in normal clotting, most physicians and patients automatically assume that vitamin K should be avoided and that supplements containing vitamin K at any level should be discouraged. This is so common that we even provide a version of our multivitamin without vitamin K.

However, not only is vitamin K important for other reasons, such as bone and cardiovascular health, but there has been a good amount of research showing that moderate and consistent intake (including moderate levels from supplements) is not only safe but beneficial. 

 Interestingly, it is low and erratic intake of dietary vitamin K is at least partly responsible for the variable response to warfarin in patients with unstable control of anticoagulation.

Researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston looked at the effect of varying dietary vitamin K intake on the INR (a way of measuring how fast blood clots) in patients receiving anticoagulation therapy with warfarin.

During the study, adults taking warfarin recorded the amounts of all food items and medications consumed, while the researchers recorded week-to-week changes in vitamin K intake, warfarin dose, and INR. Interestingly, as vitamin K intake increased, INR became more consistent and stable. In contrast, as vitamin K intake decreased, INR fluctuated to a greater extent and became more variable.
Why would a diet low in vitamin K make the INR more difficult to manage?

The article link at the bottom provides one of the best explanations of vitamin K and warfarin I have seen, and it gives this explanation:

“Suppose you have a diet that is extremely low in vitamin K. Now suppose you eat a spinach salad at dinner one night. Spinach salad is high in vitamin K, so you have just increased your vitamin K intake for the week. Because your diet is so low in vitamin K, this increase in vitamin K intake represents a huge change in your vitamin K intake for the week.

For example, maybe eating the spinach salad increased your vitamin K intake by 50%. The result of this significant increase in vitamin K will be a significant drop in your INR. On the other hand, say you have a diet that has a moderate intake of vitamin K. In eating the spinach salad, you may have increased your vitamin K intake for the week, but rather than increasing your intake by 50%, you increased it by only 5%.

The bottom line is that if your diet is extremely low in vitamin K, then any changes to your vitamin K intake represent large fluctuations in your vitamin K intake, which may translate to large fluctuations in your INR.”

The take home message is that it is consistency that matters, and if you have a higher, but moderate, intake of vitamin K the fluctuations are likely to be less pronounced and variability in clotting may actually be reduced.

So, rather than automatically avoiding all vitamin K and losing the benefits of this important vitamin, talk to the doctor about a happy medium that allows you to eat healthy, take sensible supplements, and better manage your blood clotting. 

 In addition to the article I referenced, I’ve included a few studies to aid in discussion with your health professional or personal knowledge.

For further information:  Deanna Waters 

Saturday, July 30, 2016

How to Lower the Risk of Stroke for Women

 Here is an important study that shows how the risks for strokes in women can be reduced according to their levels of potassium, magnesium and calcium.  However, in fact, most women would not even be aware of what their levels of these minerals would be.  Doctors don't measure them, and even if they did, where is the data to help them know what to eat and what reliable supplements to take?   Read this study and then my comments below.

The results of a large prospective study show that women with a higher intake of magnesium, potassium and calcium have a lower risk of stroke.

Calcium, potassium and magnesium are the 3 most abundant minerals in the body. Each play roles in the health of the cardiovascular system. Although studies have shown these minerals to have benefits related to cardiovascular health, information on the relation of magnesium, potassium and calcium with stroke risk have been inconsistent. These minerals are often found together in foods, and their intakes are strongly correlated.

In a new recent published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers examined the associations between intakes of magnesium, potassium and calcium with stroke risk in a large population of women.

The participants included 180,864 women that were participants in two studies, the Nurses Health Study and Nurses Health Study 2 (NHS and NHS 2). Follow-up in the NHS was 30 years, and 22 years for the NHS 2. Food frequency questionnaires were used to document intake of each mineral and a combination of the 3 from both dietary and supplemental sources.

During the follow-up period, a total of 3,780 stroke cases were documented. Compared to the women in the lowest 20% of magnesium intake the women with the highest 20% of intake had a 13% lower risk of stroke. Women with the highest potassium intake had an 11% lower risk of stroke. Women with the highest combined mineral score had a 28% reduced risk of stroke.

Based on an updated meta-analysis of all prospective studies to date, the risk of stroke was reduced 13% for each 100 mg/day increase in magnesium intake. For each 1,000mg/day increase in potassium intake there was a 9% reduction in stroke risk. Calcium intake was not independently associated with stroke risk.

The results of this study show that both magnesium and potassium intakes are inversely associated with stroke risk, and that women with a higher intake of the combination of magnesium, potassium and calcium have a significantly lower risk of total stroke.

Thank you to the USANA Health and Education Department for revealing this study.

Note from Deanna:  It would be interesting to see whether studies have been done to see how these minerals affect men as well, and their reduction in the risk of having a stroke.  In the meantime, it would seem reasonable to have your levels of potasium, calcium and magnesium checked.  I have put my faith in the USANA nutritional supplements to boost my health. 
Please contact me for further information.

Deanna Waters


Friday, July 15, 2016


The benefits of most supplemental nutrients are more obvious after chronic long-term use (except correction of deficiencies, of course). Here is a paper showing fish oil having benefits even with short-term intake (6 months).

It is well-known that omega-3 fatty acids can improve long-term heart health

A study published in the medical journal Chest indicates that omega-3 fatty acids contained in fish oil may improve heart function even after short-term supplementation.

Researchers followed 58 people aged 60 or older who were randomly assigned to take either marine-derived omega-3s (fish oil) or plant-derived omega-3s (alpha-linolenic acid) from soy oil. 

The oils were taken as 1-gram capsules, twice daily for six months.
A measure of heart-healthiness called heart rate variability (HRV) was assessed every other day. 

Supplementation with 2 grams a day of fish oil was associated with a significant increase in HRV. The supplementation with 2 grams a day of soy oil also significantly improved HRV, but to a lesser degree than the fish oil.

In addition to other factors known to improve heart health, such as exercise, weight loss, and stress reduction, taking a daily omega-3 oil supplement may therefore reduce the risk of developing irregular heart rhythm or succumbing to sudden cardiac death.

Information provided by the USANA Health and Education Department.

Note from Deanna Waters:  My husband and I appreciate the science behind the USANA BiOmega fish oil supplements, which contain a concentrated dose of two important Omega-3 fatty acids - EPA and DHA - to support healthy cellular function throughout the body.

Sunday, July 3, 2016


Twelve weeks of supplementation with vitamins and minerals was found to boost the attention scores of children, according to results published in the British Journal of Nutrition.


It is well known that adequate levels of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients are essential for optimal neural functioning. A significant percentage of individuals, including children, suffer from deficiencies in one or more vitamins or minerals.

This study investigated whether daily supplementation with multivitamins could alter cognitive performance and mood in healthy children.

The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study included 81 healthy children aged 8-14. The children were reportedly all healthy and free from food allergies. None of the children used other dietary supplements during the three months prior to the study. Participants were randomly assigned to daily multivitamin and mineral supplements or placebo for 12 weeks.

The children underwent laboratory assessments of their cognitive performance and mood pre-dose and at 1 and 3 h post-dose on the first and last days of the trial. Assessments were also completed at home after 4 and 8 weeks at 3 hours post-dose.

Cognitive performance was measured using a battery of laboratory assessments, which included tasks assessing mood and the speed and accuracy of attention and aspects of memory.

The children in the vitamin/mineral group performed more accurately on two tests of attention. No effects were observed on measures of the children’s mood.

Although the results of this study require further investigation, it suggests that vitamin/mineral supplementation has the potential to improve brain function in healthy children.

Information provided by USANA Health and Science Education Department.

Note from Deanna Waters:  I recommend the USANA Health Sciences multi vitamins and minerals for children called USANIMALS, which is uniquely pharmaceutical grade, guaranteed for potency, purity, dissolution and bioavailability.  A wonderful choice for children.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Osteoarthritis Symptoms Improve with Regular Walking & Glucosamine Supplements

 moderate hip or knee osteoarthritis, walking a minimum of 3,000 steps ( 30 )   The results of a clinical trial published in Arthritis Research and Therapy suggest that supplementing with glucosamine and taking regular walks (about 3000 steps or 30 minutes, at least 3 days per week) can improve pain, physical function, and overall activity levels in adults with mild to moderate knee or hip osteoarthritis.

Subjects included 36 inactive middle-aged adults that were treated with 1500 mg of glucosamine per day for 6 weeks, followed by a walking program of either 3 or 5 days per week (glucosamine supplementation continued). Physical activity levels, physical function, and pain assessment scores improved during the first 6 weeks of the study. Between the start of the walking program (week 6) and the final follow-up (week 24), further improvements were seen, though most improvements happened between weeks 6 and 12. No significant differences were observed between participants who participated in the 3 and 5 day per week programs.

Note:  Information courtesy of USANA Health Sciences, June 15, 2016

From Deanna Waters:  I have found this study to be true in my own case.  The combination of regular walking at least 3 days a week, and daily intake of glucosamine has made a great difference for me, ongoing over the past two years.  I also do a variety of other exercises at the gym.

Friday, June 3, 2016

One of the biggest concerns with aging, is the fear of cognitive decline or dementia.  This study affirms my determination to take my daily dose of USANA's BiOmega fish oil capsules for optimal Omega 3's.

Fish oil is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) that we know are beneficial for the heart and brain. But, research now shows that higher blood levels of EPA/DHA may be correlated with the actual size of the hippocampus, the area of the brain related to learning and cognition. Very interesting stuff.


Normal aging results in overall brain atrophy, or shrinkage. In a study published in the journal Neurology, scientists looked at the possible association between higher levels omega-3 fatty acids and greater brain volume in aging adults.

The study included 1,111 women aged 65 to 80 enrolled in the Women’s Health Initiative Memory Study. At the beginning of the study, blood samples were taken to analyze omega-3 fatty acid (EPA and DHA) levels. On an average of 8 years later, magnetic resonance imagining (MRI) was conducted to measure brain volumes. In addition to total brain volume, several specific regions of the brain were also measured. Adjustments were made for factors such as hormone therapy, time since randomization, demographics, and cerebral and cardiovascular disease risk.

In fully adjusted models, a greater blood volume of EPA and DHA was correlated with a larger brain volume, and even more specifically with greater hippocampal volume in these postmenopausal women. The hippocampus is an area of the brain involved with cognition and learning. This effect on brain volume is thought to be the equivalent of delaying the normal age-related loss of brain cells by one to two years.

The results of this study suggest that higher omega-3 fatty acid levels achieved through diet or supplementation may reduce normal brain atrophy and help delay cognitive aging and dementia.

Full paper:
For more information on this topic and to purchase USANA's BiOmega fish oil capsules,
please contact:  Deanna Waters 

Monday, May 30, 2016


Are you getting enough magnesium?
May 30,2016
If you’ve ever heard the objection “supplements just make expensive urine,” here is a study illustrating the concept that if you aren’t excreting some through the urine, you may not be getting enough. 

Adults with the lowest urinary excretion of magnesium had a higher risk of heart disease.


In a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, adult participants with the lowest magnesium urinary excretion, an indicator of magnesium uptake, had a significantly increased risk of ischemic heart disease. 

The research participants included 7,664 adults that were part of a population-based cohort study known as the Prevention of Renal and Vascular End-Stage Disease (PREVEND) study. All participants were free of known cardiovascular disease at the beginning of the trial. Urinary magnesium excretion was measured in 2 baseline 24-hour urine collections.

During an average follow-up of 10.5 years, 462 fatal and nonfatal IHD events occurred. Research indicated a relationship between urinary magnesium excretion and IHD risk. 

The participants with the lowest 20% of magnesium excretion were 60% more likely to experience a fatal or nonfatal IHD event than those with higher magnesium urinary excretion. 

Similarly, the group with the lowest magnesium excretion experienced a 70% increased risk of mortality resulting from IHD. There was no significant association between circulating plasma magnesium and risk of IHD. 

The results of this study suggest that low magnesium urinary excretion, an indicator of magnesium status, may be associated with an increased risk of IHD incidence. Therefore, the risk of ischemic heart disease may be reduced by increasing dietary intake of magnesium, especially in those with the lowest urinary magnesium excretion.
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From Deanna Waters:  Magnesium is just one of the necessary nutrients that we need every day.  That's why including optimal nutritional supplementation twice a day is so important.  For magnesium, I trust the USANA Essentials and the Calcium Plus (with magnesium)
Please take the free health assessment at my site and allow me to help you personalize your nutrition.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Exercise might slow rate of mental decline by 10 years for older people

By Morgan Manella, Special to CNN  Updated 3:03 PM ET, Thu March 24, 2016

(CNN)Mentally, we all slow down a little bit as we age. It gets harder to recall names, or we forget where we put our keys, or the car for that matter. Physically, an older brain doesn't work as fast as it used to. But scientists think there might be one thing that could help slow down this natural aging process.

A study published online this week in Neurology found that older people who exercised regularly experienced a slower rate of mental decline.
In this study, 876 people at an average age of 71 who were a part of the Northern Manhattan Study, a group of people studied for stroke and for the potential to have a stroke, were asked how long and how often they exercised in the two weeks before their in-person interview. 
Among the participants, 90% reported light exercise, such as walking and gardening, or no exercise at all. Those people were placed in the low activity group. The remaining 10% reported moderate to high-intensity exercise, such as running and aerobics, and were placed in the high activity group.
About seven years later, each person was given an MRI and a battery of tests that examined memory and thinking skills. Five years after that, participants took the memory and thinking tests again. 
Researchers from the University of Miami and Columbia University found that people with no signs of cognitive impairment at the start of the research who reported low activity levels showed a greater decline in processing speed and episodic memory over five years. Their brains aged about 10 years more than the group that exercised. 
"These results were not surprising because I think there is more and more evidence that more physical activity is good," said Dr. Clinton Wright, an associate professor of neurology, public health sciences and neuroscience at University of Miami School of Medicine. "This is really building on evidence." 
Earlier studies have shown that exercise increases your gray matter in the areas that count for complex thought and decision-making.
Exercise is also a great stress reliever, which can protect the brain from damage caused by stress, which can cloud memory and slow thinking. Even something as simple as taking brisk walks can increase creative thinking, earlier studies have shown.
This study adds evidence that the opposite of an energetic lifestyle -- essentially, being a couch potato -- makes your brain sluggish, too.
"The effects that show low physical activity predicts cognitive decline over five years of follow-up are very strong and very robust and survived the adjustment for a large number of things that could influence results," said Dr. Richard Lipton, a professor of neurology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, who was not affiliated with this study. 
Processing speed -- how long it takes a person to complete tasks -- deteriorates during the normal aging process. Declines in episodic memory -- the ability to retain items in everyday life, such as a grocery shopping list --are one of the hallmarks of early Alzheimer's disease, Lipton explained.
The study shows the effects on tests of very specific cognitive abilities, processing speed and episodic memory, which are important for everyday function, Lipton said.
What this study shows is that we need to keep active even long into old age if we want to keep our brains active.
Another strength of the research is the ethnic and racial diversity of the people it studied, Wright said.
"It's probably one of the first that includes Latinos and African-Americans and whites in the same community," Wright said.
Researchers are consistently pinpointing exercise as a significant factor related to cognitive health in older age. 
Another recent study showed that poor physical fitness in middle age might be associated with a smaller brain size later on, which could lead to dementia and mental decline. 
"This (current) study is really exciting," Lipton said. "It makes me feel really good about being on my elliptical right now. It contains the promise, the hint, the hope, that if people are more active that will protect their brains from aging and cognitive decline."
For further information on aging and how to protect your brain,
please contact Deanna Waters