Have you ever heard about homocysteine or homocysteine levels? If not, it’s worth to get to know more.

Homocysteine by the medical definition “is a common amino acid in your blood.”[1] It influences the body in more ways than it might seem at first. It gets produced from the amino acid methionine. The problem in most cases arises when “you don’t have optimal amounts of B vitamins in your diet, the enzymes that turn homocysteine into either glutathione (an important antioxidant), or SAMe (s-adenosyl methionine) (an important biological agent in the human body, participating in over 40 essential biochemical reactions), don’t work efficiently.”[2] As a result, there is an increase in homocysteine levels. Board certified nutrition specialist Chen Ben Asher says that it is even more important to follow homocysteine levels than cholesterol, blood pressure, and weight. This particular level that we are looking influences way more than just weight gain.

Why lower your homocysteine levels: to avoid

  • heart disease
  • cancers
  • depression
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Stroke
  • diseases (now scientifically proved – over 50)
  • damage to brain, arteries and even DNA

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The good part is that a person can find treatment, and solve his or her homocysteine levels.

The most efficient way: suitable diet and supplements

This approach can especially help to avoid or reduce the risk of diabetes. Even lowering a bit of homocysteine level will be a big step forward. Excluding different chemicals in your daily life such as found in various foods is a stable way to go.

How to measure my homocysteine levels?

Interestingly is that you can do it even at home. There are special kits that one can buy and get results even from a small amount of blood. The level is in mmol/l, where 15 mmol/l or more is high. Even seven units linked with increased risk of different health problems, so it is worth to check that out with the right specialist in time. Only he or she can understand if the current eating habits or even supplements are working and don’t give the opposite result. You should also think about other your habits.

Factors that promote high homocysteine levels

  1. Oestrogen deficiency
  2. Family history of diseases (diabetes, heart disease, stroke, cancer, Alzheimer’s)
  3. Harmful drinking habits (including excessive coffee and tea)
  4. Smoking
  5. Pregnancy
  6. Hostility and repressed anger

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As far as the diet goes, it depends individually. But vegetarian or vegan diet (because it might lead to a decreased level of vitamin B12). But on the other side, excessive red meat and dairy product intake is also not good. Same goes for salt and high fats. Fish and vegetables are good if you are not intolerant. There are also many other options that a nutrition specialist can suggest.

Reference:

[1] Heart Disease and Homocysteine. Accessed from: http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/guide/homocysteine-riskrel=”nofollow”

[2] Homocysteine. Accessed from: http://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/guide/homocysteine-riskrel=”nofollow”