Sunday, September 27, 2020

How Strong Bones Rejuvenate the Mind and Body!

 

Scientists have discovered a hormone that helps your muscles stay stronger, your brain more alert and nimble, keeps your blood sugar under control, and makes your bones stronger.      

This hormone is called osteocalcin, and it is somewhat of a fountain of youth for your mind and body.  Bones create osteocalcin, and you can take steps to secrete more of it!

Osteocalcin tends to decrease as we age with the decline beginning in the thirties for woman and in the fifties for mean.   Scientists believe this decline is one of the main reasons older people lose mental and physical function.

Researchers at Columbia University Medical Center did animal tests and showed that injections of osteocalcin into older animals and showed that it resulted in dramatic improvements in muscle function to the level of younger animals.   The injections also improved animal brain functions like recall and learning to levels that rivaled younger animals.

Research from Europe and Australia showed that woman in their 70’s with the highest levels of osteocalcin had better mental skills that allow processing of information and decision making.

How to Increase Osteocalcin

The most important step to increasing osteocalcin in exercise!  Research from the Medical College of Georgia showed that running or walking twenty minutes per day increase osteocalcin.

But aerobic exercise is not the only way to increase osteocalcin levels – resistance training can also increase osteocalcin particularly if it is coupled with adequate intake of key minerals such as calcium.




Sunday, September 20, 2020

Choline - The Most Important Nutrient You Never Hear About!

 

Choline has recently been added to the list of essential nutrients for several reasons.  In a 2020 review, the Dietary Advisory Committee found that most Americans are deficient in Choline.

Studies show higher choline intake is linked to decreased heart disease risk and well as a 24% drop in breast cancer risk.  Choline supports optimal health at all stages of life and plays a critical role in healthy fetal development, helps maintain cognition and memory, boosts energy, and helps regulate muscle control.

Choline has several key functions:

Helps the body produce key cellular messaging compounds

Is critical for proper cell structure and cell membrane composition

Is necessary for fat transport and metabolism

Is required for DNA synthesis

Choline and Brain Function

Choline Is key for nervous system health because choline is required for the synthesis of acetylcholine (ACH) which is a neurotransmitter used throughout the brain and body.

ACH decreases with age and decreased ACH levels directly reduce cognitive function.   ACH supports alertness, attention, and learning.  ACH levels are critical for memory, and in Alzheimer's patients ACH levels are lowered.   

ACH levels are lowered by many common over the counter antihistamines taken for allergies and sleep such as Benadryl.  These drugs are directly linked to increased dementia risk for this reason.

 How Much Choline?

 Your body produces some choline, but you still require a substantial amount of dietary choline.

The newly established daily value for choline is 500 mg per day. You can get it from choline supplements or foods including eggs (113 mg of choline per egg), beef liver (290 mg of choline per 2.4 ounces), chicken liver (222 mg of choline per 2.4 ounces), cod (249 mg per 85 grams), and more.

Adequate dietary choline intake is particularly challenging for vegetarians and even more so vegans because the best dietary sources of choline are from animal products.   It is very difficult to get the 550 mg RDA of choline from purely plant sources.   For this reason, it is worth aging Vegetarians or Vegans consider taking a highly bioavailable choline supplement like Alpha GPC.

Too Much Choline

Although many people do not get enough choline – too much can cause a fishy body odor, vomiting, heavy sweating and salivation, low blood pressure, and liver damage

Groups at High Risk for Choline Deficiency

Pregnant woman - According to a study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, there is an increased risk of neural tube birth defects in babies of women who consume less than 300 mg of choline per day when compared to pregnant women who get at least 500 mg daily.

Because choline will be pulled from the mother's blood to supply adequate amounts to the fetus, pregnant and lactating women have higher choline needs, yet only 5% get enough, according to one study.

Endurance athletes — Endurance exercises, like marathons and triathlons, can deplete choline levels. Studies show that supplementing with choline before these types of stressful exercises can help keep the levels of choline in the blood from getting too low.

People who drink a lot of alcohol — Excess alcohol consumption can increase your need for more choline while simultaneously increasing your risk of deficiency.

Postmenopausal women — Postmenopausal women have lower estrogen concentrations, which can increase the risk of organ dysfunction in response to a low-choline diet.

Sunday, September 13, 2020

The Cable-Pull Through - the Best Exercise You are Not Doing!

 

Cable Pull-Throughs may be the best exercise you aren’t doing!   They share a lot in common with the Kettlebell Swing, but they are much easier to learn and can really help to groove the hip hinge pattern.   The pull-through is fantastic for building posterior chain strength and directly carries over to the field of play by teaching you how to use your glutes and hamstrings to produce hip extension for running and jumping.   Specifically, it teaches you to separate your low back from your hips during the hip hinge pattern.    

Many people use their low back to produce movement which sets them up for injury!   The pull-through also provides full-range loading with no dead spots in the movement which teaches you to maintain full-body tension throughout the entire range of motion for hip extension and flexion.

The pull-through is also an excellent choice for people with low back issues because it places much less load on the spine yet provides the benefits of a deadlift or other hip hinge movements like the kettlebell swing.  Last but not least the pull-through can help as a corrective exercise for people who consistently fall into the pattern of being hamstring dominant in classic glute exercise like supine bridges. 
When doing bridges aka hip lifts many people will have hamstring cramps because they are not effectively activating their glutes so consequently compensate by overusing their hamstrings.    For these folks cable pull throughs can often completely fix the problem by teaching them to use their glutes more and hamstrings less for hip extension!
How to do a Cable Pull-Through
 Set an adjustable cable in a low position – not necessarily the lowest position because you want the line of pull to be more horizontal than vertical which is one of the big advantages of using a cable over a free weight! Keep in mind standing hip extension is more of a horizontal movement than a vertical one.
  1. Attached a tricep rope to the end of the cable so you can grasp both ends of the rope.
  2. For this movement you will face away from the cable with a slightly wide stance and think about pushing the knees out from the center. You are going to reach down and back through your legs and grasp both ends of the rope.
  3. This is NOT a squat movement – so sit back like you are trying to touch a wall behind you with your butt. Keep pushing back until your hands are past your knees.
  4. Keep your spine straight the whole time! This means maintaining the natural arch of the low back and not allowing your upper back to round – you will really feel the stretch in the hamstrings if you are doing it correctly!
  5. Your head should follow the hip hinge with chin-tucked slightly throughout – you do NOT want to hyper-extend the neck!
  6. At the top of the movement concentrate on squeezing the glutes at the top without locking the knees.
  7. A good starting point is 3 – 4 sets of 8 – 15 reps and this is NOT about moving as much weight as you can or trying to rack the stack! Be mindful during the movement and make sure the back stays flat, neck does not hyper-extend, and you feel those glutes firing!
For a great visual watch this video teaching the movement by Tony Gentilcore:  


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZFRe50WzpM
 

Saturday, September 5, 2020

New Vitamin D/Covid Study

 



IMPORTANT NEW VITAMIN D FOR COVID STUDY. There have been several studies showing a relationship between Vitamin D intake and Covid - long story short - having your levels correct makes an ENORMOUS difference in risk and outcome should you contract Covid-19. This body of evidence has been strengthened even more but a full randomized controlled clinical trial - the gold standard in research and WOW.

The first randomized controlled trial (RCT) of vitamin D in COVID-19 has just been published (https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960076020302764?via%3Dihub) The results are astounding: vitamin D nearly abolished the odds of requiring treatment in ICU. Although the number of deaths was too small to say for sure, vitamin D may actually abolish the risk of death from COVID-19..

You should ALWAYS take Vitamin D with vitamin K2 which is the fat-soluble version of K. K works synergistically with D to make sure calcium goes where it is supposed to - into your bones - not your tissues or arteries.

Ideally get your levels checked and then supplement - you can get a blood test or a finger stick test and neither require a prescription. You want your blood levels between 40 - 80 ideally. The only way to KNOW this is testing. For most Caucasians who do not get much sunlight you will need to take 5,000iu per day of Vitamin D3 to get into this range, but it can vary considerably based on genetics. I require 10,000iu per day in winter months to stay there. People of color require even more. Sunlight can and does create D in most people very well, but you have to be careful of getting burned.

Now is the time to be getting your levels optimized as we head into fall and winter - do not let those levels drop! There are many other benefits to optimizing D levels including cardiovascular health, bone health, muscle mass in aging adults, etc. This list is long and impressive - single most important supplement to get right! 
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Sunday, August 30, 2020

How to Avoid the Nine Biggest Beginner Gym Mistakes

 


Watch this short video to learn how to avoid the 9 most common beginner mistakes at the gym.     This will give you a simple guide to achieving the results you want in the shortest time possible at a gym: https://youtu.be/-NL1_upNzQU  

Sunday, August 23, 2020

Psychological Stress and Exercise Recovery

 


We all know that stress impacts our lives, but what may surprise you is that stress directly impacts how you recover from workouts.     Chronic psychological stress literally increases muscle soreness after a workout and slows down recovery.     This study above proves it:    https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24343323

At the same time workouts can help reduce psychological stress so not working out is NOT the answer.      Balance intense workouts with low intensity activity and activities which bring your focus into the moment such as meditation, yoga, playing games, etc. to get the benefits of exercise while enhancing recovery!



Sunday, August 16, 2020

How Much Time Should You Rest Between Resistance Training Sets?

 

One of the most common questions about weight training aka resistance training is how long should you rest between each exercise set?     If you take a look at the relevant research concerning this topic there are some good answers.

For a long time, researchers believed that shorter rest periods were better for increasing muscle size which was thought to occur because of increased levels of metabolic stress by not allowing complete recovery.    However, research done in 2015 shows that using longer rest periods actually results in better results for both increased muscle size and increased muscle strength.     It is thought that this occurs because longer rest periods allow a higher training volume (more repetitions of each exercise).

Another aspect to consider is whether most of your workout uses compound exercises (compound exercises use multi-joint exercises using more muscle mass such as a chest press vs a pec dec or pull-up vs an Lat Pullover).      In a 2012 study researchers found that with shorter rest periods workout volume decreased for both single-joint and multi-joint compound exercises.       However, the decrease in volume in workouts with short rest periods tended to be significantly greater with multi-joint compound exercises vs single-joint exercise (29% reduction in volume with multi-joint as compared to 15% with single- joint exercise). So for strength routines focused on compound, multi-joint movements increased rest time is probably a good idea.

Another study which looked at the effects of rest interval length on training volume discovered another important item:    reduction in training volume occurs mainly between 1 and 2-minute rest periods.    The percentage difference between 2 and 3-minute rest periods is much smaller, except when doing 5 or more sets of an exercise.     So, for people doing 3 – 4 sets per exercise, 2 minutes is a good rest interval, but if doing 5 or more sets you should probably extend the rest interval to 3 minutes.

Another important piece of information is that recreational lifters who self-determine rest periods tend to rest just under 2 minutes between sets meaning that for most lifters doing 3 to 4 sets of several exercises whose goal is increased muscle size and strength you probably do not need to time your rest intervals and can go just go by feel.

Timing rest intervals becomes more important for advanced resistance training such as Power Lifting and Bodybuilding, but for most of us we can just go by how we feel!

Saturday, August 8, 2020

How Sugar can Sabotage Your Weight Loss Program

 

Many people notice that eating breakfast makes them hungrier throughout the day, and this is probably NOT their imagination!   In this case the culprit is likely what they eat.  Specifically, refined carbohydrates, including sugar, can drive hunger particularly if they are consumed with little fat or protein.

A recent study tested this hypothesis with 16 healthy young women between the ages of 18 and 30 who had a stable body weight for the last 3 months.  Anyone with diabetes or on medications that affect appetite was excluded along with people who were allergic to any part of the meals given as part of the study.

Participants fasted for a minimum of 8 hours prior to the study.  In the morning participants came to the laboratory and were given a standardized test meal consisting of passion fruit juice, one cup of coffee, French bread and 5 grams of margarine.   The two drinks had no sugar added and the participants were instructed to sweeten to their preferred taste.

The sugar container given to the participants was weighed both before and after its use by each person to know the amount of sugar each person added to their drinks.   After completing the entire meal participants did not eat or drink anything (except water) until lunchtime.

Lunch was served 3 hours after breakfast and consisted of pasta with tomato sauce, and participants were instructed to eat until they felt satisfied. 

Study Results

The participants were divided into two groups based on the amount of sugar they elected to add to their breakfast.   The high sugar group added about 25 grams of sugar to breakfast while the low sugar group only added 14 grams of sugar. 
  
Both groups were evaluated for their perception of hunger and satiety.     The high sugar group had significantly higher levels of hunger during the three hours after breakfast AND consumed significantly more pasta at lunch!

Take Home Message

Avoid high sugar breakfasts such as standard breakfast cereal, fruit juices (eat fruit don’t drink it!) and consume 15 – 20 grams of protein and a small amount of fat.   Also try to add higher fiber carb choices like berries instead of banana, adding spinach to an omelet, etc.      Examples include an omelet with spinach with berries or a shake with protein, greens, and small amount of MCT oil for fat.

Sunday, August 2, 2020

How Many Repetitions and Sets are Required to Get Results from Weight Training?



Many hours are spent in heated debate on this topic, but the truth is that the number of reps per set and number of sets per workout are secondary measures.       A close review of the scientific research shows that the weight of evidence does NOT support the idea that different numbers of repetitions have differential effects on muscular strength and endurance.       Furthermore, a review on this subject concluded that “all these studies strongly suggest that within a reasonable range of repetitions, approximately 3 to 20, there does not appear to be a specific number of repetitions that will elicit more favorable gains in muscular strength, power or hypertrophy.”

What does matter then?   It is ALL about reaching momentary muscular failure (meaning that you cannot complete another repetition of an exercise in good form.     If you do not reach muscular failure or come very close the reps and sets will not produce results.     Perfect form is part of this equation because perfect form means keeping tension in the targeted muscle/s throughout the entire repetition and not using momentum.     For example, allowing the weights being lifted to settle on the top of the weight stack means you are unloading the muscle – NOT what we want to do!     Throwing weight using momentum is another way you can deload the muscle.   The key is performing smooth, steady repetitions throughout the range of motion for an exercise with no deloading until you reach momentary muscular failure.   

For beginners one set to failure between 8 – 15 repetitions is plenty for each muscle group.   Over the longer haul repetitive sets may become necessary to make progress – but never sacrifice reaching muscular failure and perfect form to do extra sets!

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Coronavirus Supplement Guide


Although there are no cures or guaranteed ways to prevent a person from becoming infected with Coronavirus other than preventing exposure through social distancing, hand-washing, and mask wearing there are nutritional supplements that can potentially help minimize symptoms.      As always it is critical to discuss any and all nutritional supplements you take with your physician and always contact your physician if you feel you are experiencing symptoms of Covid 19!

So what are these supplements?


Quercetin – is a plant chemical with strong anti-viral activity that is proven to prevent and mitigate all sorts of viral infections as well as being outstanding for allergies.    In the case of Covid it is particularly well-suited because it is a zinc “ionophore” which means it drives zinc into the cells which is what the infamous drug hydroxychloroquine does, but quercetin achieves with no side effects and no prescription.    

The best forms of quercetin include it being mixed with bromelain – a digestive enzyme that increases absorption.    Inexpensive and easy to find on Amazon or at Vitamin shoppe – suggested dosage is 1,000mg per day EVERY day until this thing is over – works way better if it is in your system PRIOR to exposure.   To understand more about Quercetin/Zinc and covid read here:  https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2020/06/01/quercetin-lowers-your-viral-infections-risk.aspx?cid_source=dnl&cid_medium=email&cid_content=art2HL&cid=20200601Z1&et_cid=DM554057&et_rid=884631632

Do NOT take Quercetin if you are on blood thinners of any kind!!!

Zinc – if you are routinely eat meat, oysters or pumpkin seeds you probably get enough zinc.   It also makes sense to take a supplement with 15 – 30 mg of a high quality chelated form of zinc like zinc picolinate or zinc gluconate or “Optizinc” which is another chelated form of zinc.   Keep total zinc intake no higher than 50mg per day – too much causes its own set of issues and take with a meal!

Zinc lozenges – zinc lozenges are particularly effective in dealing with all respiratory viruses including Covid and you want to have them on hand and begin taking IMMEDIATELY when you have any symptoms but NOT before then.    Zinc lozenges are NOT something to take all the time - only when you have symptoms!  Best type are zinc acetate lozenges from Life Extension.     You want to ALWAYS have these lozenges available because they are ONLY effective when you start them at symptom onset!     Follow label directions.

Vitamin C – if you take a decent multi and regularly eat fruit and vegetables you get plenty of C for day to day.    However it may be smart to purchase several bottles of liposomal Vitamin C to have available to begin big doses at onset of any symptoms.  This form of C is the most bioavailable form you can get orally.    Start taking 2,000mg immediately and every two hours until you hit bowel tolerance.  Bowel Tolerance refers to the fact that when you take more than you can absorb in your gut your bowels get loose – nothing horrible.   It is KEY to keep taking it more and more till you hit this level and you will find if you are sick you will need to take a lot of it before hitting this point whereas if you are not sick you will hit bowel tolerance much earlier.   C is VERY powerful but ONLY if you get enough in you!

Vitamin D and K2 – if you are not checking your vitamin d level PLEASE start – you can get a test from your doc or order an at home one with finger stick or order your own lab test without a doctor.   Optimizing vitamin d levels is the MOST important thing you can do to prevent yourself from ending up in a hospital in the event you catch Covid and you need to do this NOW!  Taking mega-doses when sick does NOT work nearly as well as getting tested and supplementing up to optimal levels.     

For most people this will require a minimum of 5,000iu per day of Vitamin D3 (only form to take).     ALWAYS take Vitamin D WITH Vitamin K2 – a fat soluble form of K that is critical for optimal absorption and effectiveness of D and is important part of preventing Covid Issues!      20 minutes of direct sunlight during peak sun hours is all it takes for most Caucasians to optimize D levels in most of the US during the summer but do not get burned!    

D with K2 is very inexpensive and you start taking this immediately if you are not sure you have good D levels – particularly if you avoid the sun which is understandable because sun can cause damage if you get too much!   Read this article to give you a sense of how important D is for Covid and how high levels are directly correlated with good outcomes and how low levels with bad outcomes:  


Melatonin – melatonin is an extremely potent anti-inflammatory supplement that may help inhibit the cytokine storm that is what causes many of the serious complications in people that end up having big problems with Covid.   Children typically have very high melatonin levels (10 times higher than adults and 20 times higher than adults over 60) which may be one of the reasons they have way less issues with Covid.  Do NOT take melatonin anytime but directly before bed on a day to day basis – the strategy for using it during an active Covid infection is entirely different!!!  It is good to have it on hand in the event you have Covid symptoms: 

Dosage Upon COVID-19 Infection
 If you are self-quarantined at home, the following dosage applies. 
 
Melatonin COVID-19 Infection Dosage:  5 milligrams to 50 milligrams
 
The lower range is for individuals with mild or no symptoms.  The higher range is for older individuals or those with more severe symptoms. 
 
Those taking ACE inhibitors, or have cardiac conditions or hypertension need to consult your doctor before taking high doses of melatonin.  Note that melatonin may lower blood pressure and cause hypotension at higher dosages.  
 
The correct infection dose should ideally be divided into daytime and nighttime doses.

Daytime – 40% of total daily dose, divided into small equal portions to be taken every TWO HOURS.  As stated previously do not take melatonin during the day routinely.
 
Nighttime –  60% of total daily dose, divided into two portions taken 2-3 hours after dinner.  The final dose at night should be completed by 10 pm the latest.

If one is diabetic, or have insulin resistance, DO NOT TAKE MELATONIN before 3 pm.  Melatonin is able to suppress insulin. 
 
Please note that these higher dosages are only applicable during infections only.  

To learn more about melatonin and Covid check this out:  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7102583/

Aleve/Naproxen Sodium – if you need to take something for pain/inflammation and you think you may have Covid the safest choice is probably Aleve.    Aleve is a anti-inflammatory like ibuprofen/Motrin.    Aleve is a MUCH better choice if you have Covid and probably better than Tylenol which is a pain killer and NOT an anti-inflammatory.   There is evidence that Aleve (and not ibuprofen or Tylenol) can inhibit issues with clotting that clinicians are seeing with Covid and that it may have direct anti-viral effects against Covid.  So like Vitamin C and Zinc Lozenges would recommend you have a bottle on hand in case you need it!   Do NOT take this for prevention – no evidence it will help and this can cause issues if you take it all the time.   Also do NOT take it at all if on any kind of blood thinning medication!

To learn more about Aleve/Naproxen and Covid 19 see this: 

So in summary:

Quercetin and take all the time

Vitamin D and K – ideally get D levels checked and take necessary amount to get you into optimal range – see article link on D and K above.

Zinc – make sure you get enough on day to day basis – take 15 – 40mg per day in supplement form either from multiple or zinc supplement

Zinc lozenges – only to use when you have symptoms but begin IMMEDIATELY

Lipsomal Vitamin C – have several bottles on hand if you start feeling symptoms immediately ramp up dosage as described in Vitamin C section above.

Aleve – have on hand for pain or fever from Covid

Melatonin – to take in higher doses ONLY if you have symptoms

While these supplements may help and there is sound logic behind using them - they do not replace social distancing, mask wearing, proper nutrition, exercise and sleep – no supplement can replace these!   As always contact your physician immediately if you feel you have symptoms of Covid 19.

Sunday, July 19, 2020

The Many Benefits of Berberine

Berberine is a powerful plant chemical with proven antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, anti-cancer, and immune enhancing properties.    Herbs containing berberine have a long history of effective use and there is considerable science backing these uses.


It is also extremely helpful for treatment of seasonal allergies traveler’s diarrhea, food poisoning, and as an oral hypoglycemic for Type 2 diabetes.

As Per Dr. Michael Murray Berberine has been show to:

  • Produce results in clinical trials in improving Type 2 diabetes on par or better than conventional drugs including metformin.
  • Improve blood lipid levels better than statins.
  • Lower blood pressure in many subjects as well as any class of anti-hypertensive medication.
  • Improve liver function and promote anti-obesity effects.
  • Exert significant beneficial effects on digestive health and the microbiome.
  • Produce very encouraging experimental data in a wide range of modern health issues including cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and others.
  • Reduce Prostate Inflammation and potentially prevent/slow prostate cancer
How does Berberine work?
Berberine activates adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase (AMPK).  AMPK is sometimes referred to as a "metabolic master switch" because it plays an important role in regulating metabolism.

AMPK causes a cascade of effects within cells involved with maintaining energy homeostasis.  AMPK helps shift energy towards cellular repair and maintenance.   It has many of the same effects as increasing exercise while at the same time restricting caloric intake.   It is often referred to as an exercise and fasting mimic in that through activation of AMPK berberine causes similar effects and benefits to exercise!    When combined with exercise and intermittent fasting these effects are magnified!

Other benefits of berberine include:
  • Promoting insulin, leptin, and adiponectin function for a healthy metabolism*
  • Supporting healthy blood sugar levels already in the normal range*
  • Promoting healthy insulin sensitivity*
  • Promoting healthy gut microflora*
  • Supporting healthy lipid metabolism*
  • Stimulating the release of nitric oxide for healthy blood flow*

Berberine Helps Ease Anxiety and Depression
Another benefit of AMPK is that it protects neurons and increases key neurotransmitters which improves brain function and psychological well-being.  So, it should not be surprising that several studies have shown that berberine is very useful for anxiety and depression.

Berberine and Cancer Prevention
Berberine slows cancer growth and causes cancer cell death through a variety of mechanisms: tumor cell apoptosis and cell cycle arrest, inhibits blood vessel growth to tumors, inhibition of tumor cellular invasion and metastases (spread), etc.
One of the main anti-cancer targets that is inhibited by berberine is NF-kappa B. NF-kappa B is one of the most important proteins in our cells, acting as a key switch in the development and progression of inflammation and cancer.
·       Cancer (and precancerous cells) often have a permanently activated NF-kappa B, which keeps the cells proliferating and prevents them from dying (apoptosis.)
·       Chronic inflammation can also be a result of activated NF-kappa B, and we know that chronic inflammation can lead to cancer growth
·       Additionally, berberine sensitizes cancer cells to the effects of radiation but NOT of normal cells. So berberine may make radiation therapy more effective. 

Berberine also inhibits the tendency of cancer cells to become drug resistant over time by inhibiting the cellular membrane proteins that pump drugs out of the cell. When berberine is taken with numerous chemotherapy drugs, studies have shown that they work synergistically to fight cancer.
Contraindications for Berberine
May cause a prolonged QT (a variable in cardiac electrical conduction) in patients with underlying heart disease

Drug Interactions
While berberine is quite safe and well-tolerated, it may be contraindicated if you’re taking medications.  For example, berberine may hinder absorption of tetracycline and other similar antibiotics, rendering them ineffective. Also, because berberine significantly inhibits CYP3A enzymes — enzymes needed to metabolize most drugs — it can lower the clearance of medications, which in turn can augment their effect. This can lead to overdose, the risks of which will vary depending on the drug in question.

Berberine increases the effects of drugs that lower blood sugar so it is critical that you not mix berberine with these drugs unless under the supervision of a physician.
IT is important to note that berberine produces all the benefits of metformin with much lower risks!

Sources of Berberine
Berberine is available as an isolated supplement OR through certain herbs such as goldenseal or Phellodendron.    Nexrutine is a patented Phellodendron Extract with high levels of berberine that is particularly effective at reducing joint pain, improving mood, and reducing prostate inflammation and likely prostate cancer risk.   Phellodendron has a long history of being used to reduce prostate inflammation.