Scientific literature describes with great detail an involvement of B12, B9 and Vitamin D deficiencies, as well as, an impact of sugar consumption on our body's healing mechanism.
All these deficiencies are prevalent on a diet deprived of animal protein & fat, also known as a vegan diet. B12, B9 and vitamin D are found in adequate amounts in a human being's evolutionary diet of an omnivore origin. Due to probiotic bacteria's abilities to synthesis B12 and B9, as well as, synthesis of vitamin D on the skin following exposure to UVB light, a meatless diet is debatable. Yet, there are other factors in meat, that make it necessary for DNA repair and other healing processes.
The goal of this article is to describe what is known, via presentation of references to clinical studies as well as references to sources of literature, that can expand the investigators confidence in the knowledge presented.
Links in the body of the article will send you to Wikipedia articles, or other sources.
Study references can be found throughout the article, and the list is found at the end of the article.
Sugar Disease: Atherosclerosis
Hardening of the arteries is accomplished by a few contributing factors.
These factors include;
The Homocysteine Connection
B12** and B9*** are essential in converting Homocysteine into a stable compound*.
Homocysteine irritates the blood vessels walls, causing injury to the cell membrane.
Cell membrane injury accompanies an inflammatory response.
This response sends signals to brain.
The brain, in turn, tells Liver to create cholesterol and ship it to injured site.
The molecular machine that ships cholesterol from Liver to injured site is LDL.
On a high sugar diet, glucose is toxic.
It has been observed to accelerate oxidation of LDL particles.
Insulin innate role
Insulin defends the whole system by accomplishing a few tasks;
- Shutdown of Liver's mechanism of converting amino acids into glucose,
- Shuttling all glucose present in the bloodstream into cells,
- Shuttling remaining glucose into fat cells (glucose converted into fatty acids for storage).
Clearly, the mechanism of shutting down glucose production by insulin is an innate mechanism in place for taking care of existing high glucose levels from the diet.
Glucose toxicity has been linked to pancreas beta-cell degradation.
Clearly, sugar is harming insulin creating cells, leading to development of Diabetes type 1.
Type 1 Diabetics MUST inject insulin when they eat sugar, otherwise heavy damage occurs.
When cells can't accept anymore glucose, insulin shuttles them into fat cells, where they are converted into fatty acids. Also, Insulin reduces the break down of fats into fatty acids, thus preventing the usage of stored energy for energy usage.
Consequently, fat cells become fatter, because of sugar.
LDL particles and their cholesterol are oxidized due to the unstable nature of the bloodstream; promoted by Homocysteine levels and sugar levels.
Note: LDL particles have an armor; antioxidants like CoQ10 and Vitamin E. Both are fat soluble, so they require fat to embed themselves in the LDL outer layer.
As a defense mechanism accompanying the inflammatory response, white blood cells are sent to the area of inflammation in order to deal with any potential microbial/viral/fungal threat, neutralize it and clean the area up.
Monocytes, that come to the area, turn into Macrophages.
Macrophages are like garbage trucks, they can grab the oxidized cholesterol and collect it.
The mechanism of transporting cholesterol back to the liver, for recycling, is accomplished by HDL.
This particle has developed a mechanism with Macrophages called "Reverse Cholesterol Transport".
This mechanism describes a transfer from macrophages to HDL particles.
Essentially, this is how the Macrophages get rid of the accumulating cholesterol they grab and store.
Impairment of this mechanism causes Macrophages to self-destruct (Apoptosis),
and the accumulated cholesterol hardens and forms Foam cells.
Vitamin D Connection
Macrophages require Vitamin D to function properly.
This includes cholesterol metabolism by preventing cholesterol uptake by macrophages.
Vitamin D's role has to do with relieving stress on the Macrophage. When stress increases the macrophage changes expression and over eats oxidized cholesterol LDL's, which leads to foam cell formation. Supplementation with vitamin D2 (1,25(OH)(2)D) has clinically been observed to improve suppression of foam cell formation by increasing cholesterol efflux from stressed Macrophages.
Vitamin D has an important role in managing the cholesterol uptake and egress in Macrophages.
This vitamin suppresses foam cell formation, thus suppressing plaque formation.
Cause and Effect Chart
Deficiency in B9 and B12 >>> Increase in Homocysteine
Homocysteine >>> Inflammatory response
Inflammation >>> Cholesterol transport to site
High sugar in diet >>> Cholesterol oxidation
Deficiency in Vitmain D >>> Impaired Immune cell clean up of cholesterol
Macrophages accumulate cholesterol >>> Formation of Foam cells
**B12 deficiency can be a result of imbalance in the microbial population in the gastrointestinal tract. Pathogenic bacteria destroy specialized cells, that produce Intrinsic Factor - an enzyme that carries B12 across the gut lining into the bloodstream. Probiotic supplementation resolves this issue.
***Infection by Helicobactor Pelori not only inhibits B12 absorption but also B9. This also found an increase in Homocysteine.
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 Insulin | Wikipedia
 Glucogenic amino acid | Wikipedia
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