More threads by David Baxter PhD

Daniel E.
Food sources of folate:

Table 2: Folate and Folic Acid Content of Selected Foods [12]
(mcg) DFE per
Beef liver, braised, 3 ounces
Spinach, boiled, ½ cup
Black-eyed peas (cowpeas), boiled, ½ cup
Breakfast cereals, fortified with 25% of the DV†
Rice, white, medium-grain, cooked, ½ cup†
Asparagus, boiled, 4 spears
Brussels sprouts, frozen, boiled, ½ cup
Spaghetti, cooked, enriched, ½ cup†
Lettuce, romaine, shredded, 1 cup
Avocado, raw, sliced, ½ cup
Spinach, raw, 1 cup
Broccoli, chopped, frozen, cooked, ½ cup
Mustard greens, chopped, frozen, boiled, ½ cup
Bread, white, 1 slice†
Green peas, frozen, boiled, ½ cup
Kidney beans, canned, ½ cup
Wheat germ, 2 tablespoons
Tomato juice, canned, ¾ cup
Crab, Dungeness, 3 ounces
Orange juice, ¾ cup
Turnip greens, frozen, boiled, ½ cup
Peanuts, dry roasted, 1 ounce
Orange, fresh, 1 small
Papaya, raw, cubed, ½ cup
Banana, 1 medium
Yeast, baker’s, ¼ teaspoon
Egg, whole, hard-boiled, 1 large
Cantaloupe, raw, cubed, ½ cup
Vegetarian baked beans, canned, ½ cup
Fish, halibut, cooked, 3 ounces
Milk, 1% fat, 1 cup
Ground beef, 85% lean, cooked, 3 ounces
Chicken breast, roasted, 3 ounces

Daniel E.

The BDA [British Dietetic Association] says it's advisable for people aged over 50 - or with a history of bowel cancer - not to take folic acid supplements containing more than 200 micrograms a day.

For other people, long-term intakes from fortified foods and supplements should be below 1 milligram a day for adults (lower amounts for children).

David Baxter PhD

Late Founder
The BDA [British Dietetic Association] says it's advisable for people aged over 50 - or with a history of bowel cancer - not to take folic acid supplements containing more than 200 micrograms a day.

Yikes! I've been taking One a Day vitamins for men over 50 and it contains 400 mcg folic acid per tablet.

I need to look into this further. :unsure:

Daniel E.

Whether or not folic acid supplementation can prevent or promote the development of cancer remains a highly controversial, complex, and unresolved issue at present. The portfolio of evidence from animal and human studies collectively suggests that folic acid supplementation may prevent neoplastic initiation but it may promote the progression of established precancerous lesions. Notwithstanding the lack of compelling supportive evidence, folic acid supplementation should be avoided in cancer patients and survivors and in highly predisposed and susceptible individuals at risk of developing cancer.

Furthermore, folic acid supplementation should not be routinely recommended to those ≥50 y of age, an age group with a high intake of folic acid (48) and with a high prevalence of precursor lesions (61). Given the inverse association between dietary folate intake and cancer risk as well as a more consistent protective effect associated with natural folates compared with synthetic folic acid observed in epidemiologic studies, folate should be obtained from natural dietary sources for optimal folate status and for a possible cancer-preventive effect.

The public health ramifications of the potential cancer-promoting effect of folic acid supplementation are quite serious. Although recent population-based epidemiologic studies have provided some reassurance that the drastically increased folate and folic acid intake postfortification have not resulted in an increased incidence of colorectal cancer in the United States and, in fact, that there has been a decreasing trend of colorectal cancer incidence postfortification, these studies are associated with significant limitations (62, 63). As such, safety and adverse effects, with a particular attention to cancer incidence and mortality, of the dramatically increased folate status in North America resulting from prevalent folic acid supplemental use require continued careful monitoring.

Daniel E.

"There are bioactive compounds of olive leaves—like flavonoids, oleuropein, and flavone luteolin-7-glucoside—that have attracted interest, and which show promise in possible antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, and neuroprotective properties," says Glenn. That's all the good stuff we need to protect our brain and other parts of our body.

Eating plans like the Mediterranean diet have often been touted as something to follow to protect against neurological diseases like Alzheimer's. "Test tube and animal studies show the anti-inflammatory properties in olive leaf extract could play a role in protecting the brain from Alzheimer's," says Wiesenthal, referring to this study, but adds that "more research needs to be done on humans." Similar impacts have been seen for Parkinson's disease as well.

Daniel E.

Trial name, country (reference)InterventionStudy subjectsResults
Linxian General Population Nutrition Intervention Trial, China (6, 7)15 milligrams (mg) beta-carotene, 30 mg alpha-tocopherol, and 50 micrograms (µg) selenium daily for 5 yearsHealthy men and women at increased risk of developing esophageal cancer and gastric cancer
Initial: no effect on risk of developing either cancer; decreased risk of dying from gastric cancer only Later: no effect on risk of dying from gastric cancer

Later: no effect on risk of dying from gastric cancer
Alpha-Tocopherol/Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention Study (ATBC), Finland (812)Alpha-tocopherol (50 mg per day) and/or beta-carotene (20 mg per day) supplements for 5 to 8 yearsMiddle-aged male smokers
Initial: increased incidence of lung cancer for those who took beta-carotene supplements
Later: no effect of either supplement on incidence of urothelial, pancreatic, colorectal, renal cell, or upper aerodigestive tract cancers
Carotene and Retinol Efficacy Trial (CARET), United States (1315)Daily supplementation with 15 mg beta-carotene and 25,000 International Units (IU) retinolPeople at high risk of lung cancer because of a history of smoking or exposure to asbestos
Initial: increased risk of lung cancer and increased death from all causes—trial ended early
Later: higher risks of lung cancer and all-cause mortality persisted; no effect on risk of prostate cancer
Physicians' Health Study I (PHS I), United States (16)Beta-carotene supplementation (50 mg every other day for 12 years)Male physiciansNo effect on cancer incidence, cancer mortality, or all-cause mortality in either smokers or non-smokers
Women’s Health Study (WHS), United States (17, 18)Beta-carotene supplementation (50 mg every other day), vitamin E supplementation (600 IU every other day), and aspirin (100 mg every other day)Women ages 45 and older
Initial: no benefit or harm associated with 2 years of beta-carotene supplementation
Later: no benefit or harm associated with 2 years of vitamin E supplementation
Supplémentation en Vitamines et Minéraux Antioxydants (SU.VI.MAX) Study, France (1922)Daily supplementation with vitamin C (120 mg), vitamin E (30 mg), beta-carotene (6 mg), and the minerals selenium (100 µg) and zinc (20 mg) for a median of 7.5 yearsMen and women
Initial: lower total cancer and prostate cancer incidence and all-cause mortality among men only; increased incidence of skin cancer among women only

Later: no evidence of protective effects in men or harmful effects in women within 5 years of ending supplementation
Heart Outcomes Prevention Evaluation–The Ongoing Outcomes (HOPE–TOO) Study, International (23)Daily supplementation with alpha-tocopherol (400 IU) for a median of 7 yearsPeople diagnosed with cardiovascular disease or diabetesNo effect on cancer incidence, death from cancer, or the incidence of major cardiovascular events
Selenium and Vitamin E Cancer Prevention Trial (SELECT), United States (24, 25)Daily supplementation with selenium (200 µg), vitamin E (400 IU), or bothMen ages 50 and older
Initial: no reduction in incidence of prostate or other cancers—trial stopped early
Later: more prostate cancer cases among those who took vitamin E alone
Physicians' Health Study II (PHS II), United States (26)400 IU vitamin E every other day, 500 mg vitamin C every day, or a combination of the twoMale physicians ages 50 years and olderNo reduction in incidence of prostate cancer or other cancers

Daniel E.

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Daniel E.

....Then there’s prediabetes/diabetes and cinnamon, which has blood sugar-lowering properties. With these compounds, I advise that people use the regular spice in normal culinary amounts, not a processed/concentrated packaged supplement.
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Daniel E.

Cheese can be part of a healthy diet when eaten in moderation; an ounce or two a day is reasonable, but watch out for the calories. Like all dairy foods, cheese provides calcium and protein, along with some vitamin A, vitamin B12, riboflavin, zinc, and other nutrients.

A downside is that most cheeses are high in sodium (100 to 300 milligrams or more per ounce). But compare nutrition labels, since products vary a lot in sodium, calories, and calcium, depending on the type and serving size. Low-sodium versions are available (though less tasty). Strong and savory cheeses have more flavor so you can use less. A cheese slicer will allow you to cut very fine slices to make a little go a longer way.

Daniel E.
Recent studies on the antagonistic and synergistic effects of combinations of individual polyphenols or combinations containing polyphenol rich foods.
Synergistically cytotoxic to MDA-MB-231 estrogen receptor α (ERα) human breast cancer cells in vitro when compared to effects of the individual polyphenols.EGCG + curcumin also synergistically inhibited tumor growth within female athymic nude mice implanted with MDA-MB-231 estrogen receptor (ERα) human breast cancer cells compared to individual polyphenols. Proposed mechanism of action: Cell cycle arrest and decrease in the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor receptor in tumor may play a role.​
Somers-Edgar et al. [124]​
Curcumin and resveratrol​
Synergistic inhibition of growth of p53 positive and p53 negative human colorectal cancer HCT116 cells in vitro when compared to effects of the individual polyphenols.Curcumin and resveratrol combination also synergistically inhibited tumor growth within severe combined immunodeficient female mice implanted with HCT-116 cells. Proposed mechanism of action: Decrease in proliferation and induction of apoptosis, decreased NF-κB activity, inhibition of activation of epidermal growth factor receptor.​
Majumdar et al. [125]​
Carnosic acid and curcumin
Combinations (at levels shown to be non-cytotoxic to normal human fibroblasts or human peripheral blood mononuclear cells) inhibited the growth of, and induced apoptosis in, HL-60 and KG-1a human acute myeloid leukemia cells. Proposed mechanism of action: Apoptosis associated with activation of caspases 8, 9 and 3 and Bid (a proapoptotic protein) which is a member of the Bcl family. No other Bcl proteins shown to be affected. No evidence that oxidative stress was involved.​
Pesakhov et al. [126]​
Chicken +/−herb and spice based marinating sauces​
Marinating and cooking significantly decreased the antioxidant capacities of herb and spice marinating sauces.​
Thomas et al. [127]​
Antioxidant rich spice (black pepper, cloves, cinnamon, garlic powder, ginger, oregano, paprika and rosemary) added to hamburger meat​
Significant reduction in malondialdehyde concentration (a biomarker of oxidative stress) in the spiced burger compared to that in the unspiced (control) burger. There was also a significant increase in plasma malondialdehyde concentration following consumption of the control burger. Following consumption of the spiced burger there was a “trend to decrease” in plasma malondialdehyde concentration. Urinary malondialdehyde concentration decreased by almost 50% in subjects that consumed the spiced burgers compared to those who consumed the control burgers.
Li et al. [128]​
Combinations of Aspalathus linearis and Malus domestica, Aspalathus linearis and Vaccinium, Myrtillus, Punica granatum and Malus domestica
Combinations demonstrated additive or synergistic effects (based on antioxidant capacity) but these outcomes depended on the type of assay used.​
Blasa et al. [129]​
Polyphenol rich herbs oregano, ajowan (Trachyspermum ammi) and Indian borage (Plectranthus amboinicus)​
Addition of oregano extract increased the radical scavenging activity of ajowan and Indian borage extracts.​
Khanum et al. [130]​
Peppermint, rosemary, sage, spearmint, thyme.​
All herb extracts inhibited the growth of SW-480 human colorectal cancer cells. Combinations of these extracts herbs had additive, antagonistic and synergistic effects, which were based on the combinations and/or the concentrations of the herb extracts used in the combinations.​
Yi and Wetzstein [131]​
Blueberries, grapes, chocolate covered strawberries, and polyphenol rich fruit smoothies.
Significant synergy, based on antioxidant capacity, found in combinations of chocolate covered strawberries; reported either antagonism or synergy within the combinations of constituent polyphenols; the effect depended on the constituents, and their number, and also the antioxidant assay used.​
Epps et al. [132]​
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Daniel E.


Made from the dried flower buds of the evergreen clove tree, cloves are also native to Indonesia. The spice is loaded with antioxidant power. Research comparing clove with more than 1,100 other foods found that it had three times the antioxidants of the next highest source, dried oregano. Cloves are also a natural anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial agent, a local anesthetic, and have been found to have antifungal properties. A compound found in cloves has been shown to be 29 times more powerful than aspirin in helping to prevent blood clots. Serving ideas: Delicious added to baked goods, cooked grains, bean soups and chili, applesauce, smoothies, and cooked cereals.

Daniel E.

Though there is still debate among scientists about the benefits of the golden-coloured supplements, there is some evidence that omega-3 fatty acids, including EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid), and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), can aid in heart and brain function, lower the risk of cognitive function disorders, and may help to reduce inflammation...

In general, fish oil supplements are difficult to trust, says Albert. Though it should not just be left up to the consumer, his recommendation is to buy smaller amounts and store fish oils in darker, cooler places to avoid further oxidation.

Daniel E.

There's a powerful antioxidant known as ergothioneine contained in mushrooms that scientists have their eye on. Humans can only get it through diet, and mushrooms have it in the highest concentrations of any fresh foods we consume.

In recent animal models, this antioxidant has been found to cross the bloodstream barrier that separates the brain from the rest of the body, which suggests ergothioneine could have some effect on neurological health.

Other animal models suggest this antioxidant plays a role in gut health, too, where there are also neurons that can also impact a person's mood. Whether the same can be said of humans remains to be investigated.

"Mushrooms are the highest dietary source of the amino acid ergothioneine – an anti-inflammatory which cannot be synthesized by humans," says epidemiologist Djibril Ba from Penn State.

"Having high levels of this may lower the risk of oxidative stress, which could also reduce the symptoms of depression."

Still, that's just a potential explanation. More research among larger cohorts will need to study what is different about specific mushrooms and how those differences ultimately impact human health...
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Daniel E.
Similarly, for cancer prevention:

Next time you make a salad, you might want to consider adding mushrooms to it. That's because higher mushroom consumption is associated with a lower risk of cancer...

Even though shiitake, oyster, maitake and king oyster mushrooms have higher amounts of the amino acid ergothioneine than white button, cremini and portabello mushrooms, the researchers found that people who incorporated any variety of mushrooms into their daily diets had a lower risk of cancer. According to the findings, individuals who ate 18 grams of mushrooms --or about 1/8 to 1/4 cup-- daily had a 45% lower risk of cancer compared to those who did not eat mushrooms.

Daniel E.

There has been a recent surge of interest in the unique low molecular weight dietary thiol/thione, ergothioneine. This compound can accumulate at high levels in the body from diet and may play important physiological roles in human health and development, and possibly in prevention and treatment of disease. Blood levels of ergothioneine decline with age and onset of various diseases...

Numerous animal studies have also demonstrated its benefits, whereas preventing uptake through silencing OCTN1 appears to worsen pathology in these disease models. It remains to be seen whether supplementation in humans, especially the elderly or the subset of individuals with lower blood levels of ET (due to polymorphic variants of the transporter or diet), could reduce the risk of age-related and other diseases, or act as a therapeutic by slowing or halting disease progression. The safety profile of ET and regulatory approvals facilitate such studies. With the rapid surge in interest (Fig. 1), it is undoubtedly exciting times for this unique low molecular weight compound.


Mushrooms varietiesErgothioneine (mg per 100 g dry weight)Fruits and vegetablesErgothioneine (mg per kg dry weight)
Boletus edulis (cepes)181.24Garlic34.60
King Oyster54.17Japanese Seaweed2.34
Buna Shimeji43.26Parsnip2.23
Shiitake35.35Kiwi fruit1.99
White Shimeji19.75Passion fruit1.22
White button15.44Broccoli0.38
Brown button10.41Kale0.22
Black fungus9.42Tomato0.20
Wood ear0.64RiceLOQ
White fungus0.58

Nuts, beans and spicesErgothioneine (mg per kg dry weight)Milk and soy productsErgothioneine (mg per kg dry weight)
Basil leaf4.92Tempeh201.13
Brazilian nut4.45Soy beancurd3.71
Gingko nut3.98Soy milk2.31
Cumin2.60Fresh milk (average of 4 varieties)0.25
Pepper2.57Greek yogurtLOQ
Kidney beans2.09
Pistachio nut1.90*Asparagus varieties
Almond1.87Asparagus (Malaysia)0.57
Oats1.84Asparagus (Thailand)10.24
Macadamia nut1.65Asparagus (Mexico)163.25
Sweet bean1.33White asparagus18.20
Ginseng root0.69

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Daniel E.
Dietary Supplementation of Selenoneine-Containing Tuna Dark Muscle Extract Effectively Reduces Pathology of Experimental Colorectal Cancers in Mice

Selenoneine is an ergothioneine analog with greater antioxidant activity and is the major form of organic selenium in the blood, muscles, and other tissues of tuna. The aim of this study was to determine whether a selenoneine-rich diet exerts antioxidant activities that can prevent carcinogenesis in two types of colorectal cancer model in mice. We administrated selenoneine-containing tuna dark muscle extract (STDME) to mice for one week and used azoxymethane (AOM) and dextran sodium sulfate (DSS) for inducing colorectal carcinogenesis...

These results suggest that dietary STDME may be an effective agent for reducing colorectal tumor progression.
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Daniel E.

In addition to being linked to lower blood pressure and risk of obesity, glycine supplements may help reduce the risk of a heart attack. In a study of over 4000 people with chest pains, higher levels of glycine in the blood were linked to a lower chance of heart attack.

Daniel E.
Amazon product

Did you know the synthetic B-vitamins found in supplements cannot be absorbed well or easily converted into the bioactive forms our cells use? Even other vitamins can’t work well if there is not enough of the naturally occurring B forms called vitamers. For example, without B vitamers, taking vitamin D won't prevent osteoporosis. Learn how the naturally occurring vitamers DO work and why, and start on your pathway to healthy living and longevity today!
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