medical practitioners have yet to recognize the value of vitamin
and dietary supplements. Talking with a cardiologist friend
of mine recently at the bar of Tauraso's Ristorante, when
I brought up the value of Coenzyme CoQ10 in patients with
heart disease, he told me that studies have shown that CoQ10
had no beneficial effect.
swear that CoQ10 is so beneficial that they would not think
about not giving their patients both CoQ10 and L-carnitine,
two of along list of anti-oxidants found to positively influence
cardiac patients. (Stephen T. Sinatra, M.D., “The Coenzyme
Q10 Phenomenon,” Keats Publishing, 1998; Emile G. Bliznakov,
M.D., “The Miracle Nutrient Coenzyme Q10,” Bantam Books, 1987)
Table I describes the
“Symptoms of Early Vitamin Deficiencies.” We can easily appreciate
that vitamin deficiencies, especially the water-soluble B-complex
group, cause symptoms similar to those experienced in cerebral
SYMPTOMS OF EARLY VITAMIN DEFICIENCY
Loss of appetite, depression,
irritability, confusion, loss of memory, inability to concentrate,
sensitivity to noise.
fatigue, hyperactivity, headache, insomnia, hyperesthesia
(increased sensitivity to touch). Later symptoms include:
failing vision, hypersensitivity to light and odors, dizziness,
dulled sense of taste and hallucinations.
No specific symptoms.
This vitamin is a precursor for at least 50 enzymes necessary
for normal body function. It is also required for zinc utilization.
agitation and hallucinations.
tension, numbness, dizziness, and a sullen disposition. This
vitamin is needed to respond to stress.
Listlessness and blood
vessel problems. Rats need three times as mich vitamin C when
stressed. Humans apparently also require additional vitamin
C for mental and physical stress.
We should appreciate
that prolonged consumption of the “empty calories” of refined
carbohydrates (e.g., sugar, white flour and rice, and alcohol)
lead to vitamin deficiencies, especially the water-soluble
The subtleness of the
consequences is one of the problems. Dr. Lansdale and Shamberger
found that many juvenile offenders were deficient in thiamine
(vitamin B1), referring to this condition as “sub-clinical
beri-beri.” (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, February,
To correct this problem,
the doctors gave each youth between 150 to 200 mg of thiamine
a day for three weeks, while carefully monotering when the
blood levels returned to normal. This dose of thiamine was
100 to 200 the Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of B1 which
is 1.5 mg. It took three weeks before the thiamine blood level
reached the desired normal.
This emphasizes the
fact that symptoms may not disappear as immediately as one
would expect from symptoms related to simple uncomplicated
allergy, sensitivity, or deficiency. The personality traits
(e.g., poor impulse control; easily angered; sensitive to
criticism; easily irritated; and usually hostile and aggressive)
exhibited by the juvenile offendeers disappeared over the
When the RDA's were
established medical researches were determining what levels
of thiamine were needed to prevent clinical beri-beri. Little
was known at the time about subclinical beri-beri.
When an individual
is deficient in a vitamin, it may take weeks, if not months,
of high supplementation before blood levels return to normal.
Several prominent allergists
are establishing the relationship of zinc deficiency with
sensitivity/allergic manifestations and with symptoms similar
to those experienced in cerebral allergies.
Zinc is not only critical
to the prevention of rare diseases like acrodermatitis enteropathica
and Crohn's disease (regional enteritis), but essential for
normal growth, would healing, resistance to infections, healthy
prostate function, keen night vision, and sharp senses of
taste and smell. Zinc also seems to reduce inflammation, reduce
body odor, and clear up acne.
It has now been established
that zinc is also required for learning, memory, and concentration,
and for establishing integrity of the immunological system
dealing with allergies. Additionally, zinc spurs growth and
Zinc deficiency can
be signaled by loss of weight and appetite, listlessness,
rough and scaly skin, poor night vision, dull sense of taste
and smell, white spots on fingernails, and eczema.
Acquired immune dysfunctions
in humans occur with deficiencies of iron, zinc, vitamin A,
B-6 (pyridoxine), B-12, and folic acid, and with excesses
of essential fatty acids and vitamin E. (J. American Medical
Association, 245:53-58, 1981.)
and allergies have been associated with zinc deficiency. Once
corrected with zinc supplementation, the clinical manifestation
of allergy disappears.
immune dysfunction is generally reversible, it is important
to recognize and identify clinical illnesses in which immunological
malfunctions are of nutritional origin. Correction of the
malnutrition should lead to prompt reversal of acquired immune
with zinc, it is always important to remember that it must
be given with pyridoxine (B-6). Zinc requires B-6 for proper
utilization in the body.
nicola michael c. Tauraso,