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dean and one of the World's largest NIH funded investigators for cancer and HIV/ AIDS. Though relatively less impressive, the


manner by which I reversed my osteopo- rosis (spine) and osteopenia (hip) diagno- ses to normal range within in a three year period should be noted from an endocrine standpoint. While the supplement cocktail is simple: Vitamin D3, K2, calcium and magnesium, the overarching lifestyle com- ponent that includes this supplementation is more involved. Well-placed nutraceuticals continue


to play a key role in managing my degen- erative disk disease. Fifteen years after undergoing a lower-lumbar laminectomy (disk surgery without fusion), I've discov- ered fish oil, curcumin and green tea ex- tract combined with a low inflammatory diet and routine Pilates enables me to "prevent" painful flair-ups. I rarely find it necessary to resort to my well-stocked medicine cabinet filled with symptom- fixing standbys like oxycodone, diazepam, steroid dose packs and NSAID and Cox 2 anti-inflammatories in "reaction" to flair- ups. Do I use these drugs when abso- lutely necessary? You bet. Regarding my personal use of dietary supplements and documented outcomes, I'm an anecdotal case. There is no one- size-fits-all formulaic approach for those with similar conditions. I am an "N-of-1". A staunch proponent of well-placed


high quality nutritional supplementation, I'm greatly disturbed by the irresponsible material sourcing, shoddy manufacturing standards and unethical marketing and sales tactics of fringe cavalier manufactur- ers, influencers, patients and, yes, even medical practitioners. It's shameful how these bad actors are unnecessarily tarnish- ing the reputation of an incredibly impor- tant industry. From my vantage point, I offer the following facts and commentary:


Fact #: Nutrients are Best Derived from Food


Pesticide and antibiotic-free organic


whole foods are the best source of vita- mins, minerals and most nutrients. For large parts of the population, however, finding these quality food sources remains difficult. Unfortunately, for most people, aggressively advertised high calorie, high glycemic, inflammation- and oxidative stress-causing unhealthy foodstuffs are cheap, plentiful and readily accessible (think government subsidized GMO corn


Natural Triad Magazine


and soy). Regrettably, this is what com- prises our nation's Standard American Diet (SAD)! You may do okay without supplement-


ing ... if you're among the minority who's sufficiently affluent and educated to iden- tify, purchase and ingest copious amounts of


the good stuff thus possibly getting


enough quality nutrition to prevent or even reverse disease. But as we continue to engineer more and more nutrition out of our food, it becomes ever-more doubtful.


Fact #2: Studies Have Shown Dietary Supplements to be Effective, Ineffective, and Sometimes Harmful Evolutionary biology proves that vita-


mins have been essential to life forms for billions of years; and early life forms in- cluding primitive humans could manufac- ture their own vitamins but, curiously, lost this ability over time. By the early 20th century scientists discovered that the hu- man body requires minute amounts of 13 organic molecules to ward off certain maladies and diseases such as blindness (vitamin A), severe anemia (vitamin B12) and rickets (vitamin/hormone D) and scurvy (vitamin C). There have been numerous studies,


ever since, looking at the safety and ef- fectiveness of dietary supplementation for disease prevention and treatment. While many have shown no positive effects, oth- ers have shown statistically relevant posi- tive effects. Clearly, some studies have shown negative effects and contraindica- tions when certain supplements are com- bined with specific drugs, or when they're


Elizabeth Bozeman, MD W elcome


Dr. Elizabeth Bozeman is a Board Certified Family Physician. She is also board Certified in Preventive, Holistic and Integrative Health. She trained at the Mayo Clinic and has been practicing for 15 years. She has a passion for helping people get better using a more natural and holistic approach. She helps patients with balancing hormones, thyroid function, fatigue and offers prolotherapy for musculoskeletal injuries.


336.768.3335


www.RobinhoodIntegrativeHealth.com MARCH 2014


25 Elizabeth Bozeman, MD


consumed by those with certain conditions or diseases. The science continues to be all over


the place. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent (I believe largely wasted) on large and small studies with thousands of subjects. In the U.S. (mostly through NIH, OCCAM and NCCAM) we tend to take synthetically-derived nutrients (think Centrum® Silver in lieu of quality, whole foods-based, highly bioavailable prod- ucts), administered in low potencies (again, think Centrum® Silver or One-A- Day®) and test them in isolation—focusing on one outcome. Originally designed for pharma re-


search, this reductionist model has unfor- tunately been highly ineffective for dietary supplement research. (Click to Tweet) Typically these designs offer no con- trols for lifestyle and behavior and do not adequately assess baseline nutritional status or individual physiology. Further- more, many of these studies use an infe- rior product and may not study a dose sufficient to change physiology. Nutrition expert Dr. Alan Gaby did a good job here examining the designs for the recent studies published in the "Annals of Internal Medicine". In a new meta- analysis in the Journal "Nutrients", Balz Frei, professor and director of the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State Univer- sity concludes that most clinical studies on vitamins are flawed by poor methodol- ogy. And, to top it off, despite all of these issues, there is actually a large—and grow- ing body of evidence demonstrating the safe and effective use of supplemented


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