Why take this quiz?

Put briefly and simply- oxidative stress and inflammation are the two major reasons we get disease and age more rapidly. One worsens the other and they both are treatable. Oxidative stress is poorly understood by many doctors, but studies showing that, for example, only small, dense “oxidized” LDL particles stick to coronary arteries to cause potentially lethal plaques have existed for many years. Treating your oxidative stress starts with knowing whether or not you have it. The best way to check this issue is to find a doctor with a raman spectroscopy scanner; but you can get a decent idea of how you’ll “scan” by taking the quiz below. And yes, we deal with inflammation help elsewhere. Let’s start with explaining what oxidative stress is.

What is Oxidative Stress?

what is oxidative stressOxidative stress is an imbalance between ”reactive oxygen species” and our body’s ability to detoxify the reactive intermediates or to repair the resulting damage. ROS (free radicals) are basically unpaired electrons and are ubiquitous and even made when we exercise! Here is another great explanation.

Disturbances in the normal redox state of cells can cause toxic effects through the production of peroxides and free radicals that damage all components of the cell, including proteins, lipids, and DNA. Translation, please? Oxidative stress is the opposite of your blood and tissue level of antioxidant vitamins.

Here’s exactly why you want to fix this issue:

In humans, oxidative stress is thought to be involved in the development of cancer, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, atherosclerosis, heart disease and more! You will even look older the more oxidative stress you have. Of course, the opposite is also thankfully true. Meaning that if you fix your oxidative stress, you’ll make more collagen and elastin so you’ll look younger, too.

Can we really measure this? Why doesn’t MY doctor do it?

Yes, indeed we can measure oxidative stress. I always measure this on private practice patients. In fact, even during phone consultations, I send a questionnaire which closely correlates to scan scores. I’ll get to that in a moment.

I measure oxidative stress with a unique non-invasive scanner scanner which is quite accurate. If your doctor wants one, she can contact me for information. Another way to measure is with urinary isoprostanes which is a lot more expensive and rare other than in research centers. Your doctor might not be trained in Functional Medicine or have run into a doctor like me who explains the “scanner program” to them, so they just plain might not know that such a thing exists. You might want to tell them that it does!

I have devised a questionnaire which has correlated over the last 15 years with patient scanner measurements. It is so correlative, you can just take this quiz if you can’t find a healthcare professional with a scanner.

Quiz for oxidative stress:

Please assess your degree(s) of the following: (If you are a smoker you have high Oxidative Stress by definition): test to see if you have serious skin issues
Fruits/vegetables: (Organic, non-GMO):
0-5 servings/day: LOW AMOUNT___
6-7 servings/day: MODERATE AMOUNT___
8-12+ servings per day: (HIGH AMOUNT)___

Sun/pollution/air travel/second-hand smoke: LOW EXPOSURE___

MEDIUM EXPOSURE___ HIGH EXPOSURE___

Physical/mental stress: LOW ___ MEDIUM ___ HIGH ___

Weight: NORMAL (LOW) ___ OVERWEIGHT (MEDIUM) ___ OBESE(HIGH) ___

If you eat a LOW quantity of Fruits/Veggies, you very  likely have high Oxidative Stress:

This describes me: ___

If you eat a MODERATE quantity of Fruits/Veggies with 2 or more other MODERATE-HIGH parameters, you very likely have high Oxidative Stress.

This describes me: ___

If you eat a MODERATE quantity of Fruits/Veggies with no other MODERATE-HIGH parameters you very likely have moderate Oxidative Stress.

This describes me: ___

If you eat a HIGH amount of Fruits/Veggies, with 2 or more MODERATE-HIGH parameters you very likely have moderate Oxidative Stress.

If you eat a HIGH amount of Fruits/Veggies with less than 2 other MODERATE parameters you likely are one of those rare Americans with low Oxidative Stress.

This describes me: ___

You can play with amounts of fruits and veggies and other factors like I do but these categories are basic. Can you see yourself fitting in somewhere? Remember that being overweight and stressed (high cortisol) causes silent internal inflammation which worsens oxidative stress, so when in doubt, just take care of your situation.

How did you do?

If you are like 98% of all Americans, you are high or medium for oxidative stress. Here are the options:

  1. You can increase the fruits/veggies servings to 15. To account for the horribly demineralized soil in the U.S. throw in about 5 more. Just know  that everything we grow in the U.S. has less nutritional value than it did 50 years ago due to soil demineralization, even if you are eating organically.
  2. You can “juice” which will require a purchase of a juicer and daily trips for expensive organic fruits and veggies to juice. You’ll have to do a lot of research on what are the best things to juice too. This is indeed great but you spend a lot more time and money than you’d probably like to.
  3. Here is the easiest and most cost effective “fix”:
High

You need to increase your fruits/veggies consumption by 4 servings or do a beets/apple/carrots “juice” daily. You also need to add a twice daily MVI packet to your breakfast and dinner meals. I would also recommend an epigenetic supplement to suppress inflammation and oxidative stress to you. Make sure you are sleeping well, normalize your weight, and control your stress.

Medium

You need to increase veggies and fruit consumption by 2-3 servings per day and/or do the “juice concoction” I recommend above. I would suggest that you add a twice daily MVI packet to your morning and evening meals as well. Get to a normal weight if you’re not quite there yet, sleep well, and control your stress levels.

Low 

First of all congratulations on having a healthy lifestyle. Just make sure that you continue “doing the things you do” and that you check this parameter on yourself annually; much as you do any important biomarker which is currently normal.

References: 
  1. Shardell MD et al. Low serum carotenoid concentrations and carotenoid interactions predict mortality in US adults: The
    Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III) Nutritional Research 2011 Mar;31(3):178-189.
  2. Donaldson, MS A carotenoid health index based on plasma carotenoids and health outcomes Nutrient. 2011 Dec;
    3(12): 1003 – 1022
  3. Parinandi NL et al. Antioxidants in Longevity and Medicine 2014. Oxid Med Cell Longev. 2015; 2015:739417
  4.  2019 Feb 28. doi: 10.2174/1389557519666190228160242. [Epub ahead of print]
  5. New strategies for the delivery of some natural anti-oxidants with therapeutic properties.
    Esposito E, Drechsler M, Puglia C, Cortesi R.
  6. Molecules 201924(5), 917; https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules24050917
  7. Naturally Lignan-Rich Foods: A Dietary Tool for Health Promotion?Carmen Rodríguez-GarcíaCristina Sánchez-Quesada, Estefanía ToledoMiguel Delgado-Rodríguez  and José J. Gaforio 
  8.  2019 Mar 1;102(2):395-411. doi: 10.5740/jaoacint.18-0418. Epub 2019 Jan 16.
  9. Health Benefits of Culinary Herbs and Spices.
    Jiang TA
  10.  2019 Feb;234(2):1147-1164. doi: 10.1002/jcp.27075. Epub 2018 Aug 1.
  11. Anticancer properties of tocotrienols: A review of cellular mechanisms and molecular targets.
    Montagnani Marelli M, Marzagalli M, Fontana F, Raimondi M, Moretti RM, Limonta P
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