November 17th, 2015

Promoting Satiety is Your Key to Weight Loss

Satiety The Key To Weight LossIntroduction:

The research is quite clear that safe and effective weight loss is not about will power, deprivation, or counting calories. Ultimately, weight loss success is most often attributed to strategies and tools that impact appetite and portion control. In particular, the ability to experience satiety is big factor for success.

Satiety is defined as the state of being full or gratified to the point of satisfaction. Research has shown that humans eat to achieve satiety and those who are overweight have a disordered appetite regulation typified by an increased frequency of food cravings, and a resistance to satiety after eating adequate amounts of food.

New research on promoting satiety with the revolutionary dietary fiber matrix PGX®, once again, establishes it as an extremely effective weight loss tool. In fact, I believe that PGX® is the Holy Grail of weight loss based upon the impressive results it has shown in detailed clinical and experimental studies, including a new study published in the medical journal Physiology & Behaviour on its ability to promote satiety.

Background Data:

PolyGlycoPlex (PGX®) is the most viscous and soluble fiber known. It is produced in a patented process that allows three natural fibers to coalesce and form a matrix that has a higher level of viscosity, gel-forming properties, and has more expansion with water, than any other fiber. In essence, it is a “super” fiber with all of the beneficial effects of fiber, but are magnified and more easily attained with PGX®.

Clinical studies published in major medical journals and presented at the world’s major medical conferences have shown PGX® to exert the following benefits:

  • Increases the level of compounds that block the appetite and promote satiety.
  • Decreases the level of compounds that stimulate overeating.
  • When taken prior to a meal can increase the feeling in fullness, very hungry to very full.
  • It reduces the glycemic index of any food, beverage, or meal by as much as 70%.
  • Increases insulin sensitivity and promotes improved blood sugar control.
  • Helps stabilize blood sugar levels to reduce food cravings.

New Data:

Previous studies have shown that PGX® granules and PGX®-based meal replacement formulas are very effective at promoting satiety leading to a reduction in calories consumed. To test the effects of PGX® capsules, 14 healthy adult women participated in a controlled study. The effects on the level of satiety for 2 hours after eating a standardized evening meal when the PGX® capsules were given was compared to the same meal without PGX®. Also, on the following morning, after an overnight fast, the four hour satiety response to a standardized breakfast with no PGX® supplementation was assessed. This second assessment was designed to measure the “second meal effect” of PGX. The second-meal effect measures the effect the first meal has on the blood sugar level after eating the second meal.

Results showed a statistically significant higher satiety response to the standard dinner for the PGX-supplemented dinner compared with the control dinner (p = 0.001) was found. In addition, the fullness scores of the breakfast following the PGX®-supplemented dinner at 15, 30, 90, 120, 150, 180, 210 and 240 minutes were significantly higher than those for the breakfast following the control dinner. These results show that PGX® supplementation at dinner increased the satiety effects of both the dinner itself and the subsequent un-supplemented breakfast. Hence, PGX® demonstrated a significant second meal effect indicating PGX® has the ability to induce extended satiety far beyond the just the meal it is taken before.


First, if you did not catch it previously, watch my webinar on Preventing Holiday Weight Gain. PGX® can be very helpful in this goal.

In my opinion, PGX® is the most important natural product in North America today because of its ability to address the core underlying reasons why weight loss and blood sugar control are often so difficult to achieve. Yes, I played a role in the development of PGX®, so some may say that I am severely biased. My response is that I am biased, but it is not because of any financial benefit. My bias is a reflection of the powerful effect that I have seen this safe and effective natural product have on changing people’s lives. I want everyone who has struggled with weight loss to give PGX a try. My hope is that it will change your life, as it has changed the lives of so many others. It works!!

For more information on PGX and practical guidelines to insure weight loss success, please go to


Yong MK, Solah VA, Johnson SK, et al. Effects of a viscous-fibre supplemented evening meal and the following un- supplemented breakfast on post-prandial satiety responses in healthy women, Physiology & Behavior 2015:doi 10.1016/j.physbeh.2015.11.006 [Epub ahead of print]

Dr. Michael Murray

November 10th, 2015

Resveratrol Shows Beneficial Effects in Ulcerative Colitis

Ulcerative Colitis TreatmentIntroduction:
Resveratrol is a plant compound similar to flavonoids. It is found in the low levels of the skin of red grapes, red wine, cocoa powder, baking chocolate, dark chocolate, peanuts and mulberry skin. Red wine is perhaps the most recognized source of resveratrol, however, red wine contains only one milligram per glass. Most resveratrol supplements use Japanese knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum) as the source.

There has been a great deal of hype regarding resveratrol as a dietary supplement and recent human clinical studies are showing tremendous promise in a variety of applications. A study published in the May issue of the Archives of Medical Research indicates that it can help patients with ulcerative colitis.

Background Data:
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a general term for a group of chronic inflammatory disorders of the intestines. It is divided into two major categories: Crohn’s disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). Clinically, IBD is characterized by recurrent inflammation of specific intestinal segments resulting in diverse symptoms. In the United States, about 1.4 million people have IBD with the number equally split between CD and UC. IBD may occur at any age, but it most often occurs between the ages of 15 and 35 years. Females are affected slightly more frequently than males. Caucasians have the disease two to five times more often than African or Asian Americans, and those with a Jewish heritage have a three-fold to six-fold higher incidence than non Jewish people.

One of the thoughts is that UC develops by a defect in the regulation of the immune response to intestinal flora in genetically susceptible individuals. Of course, the gut flora and intestinal environment is greatly influenced by dietary factors including low-fiber intake, reduced intake of dietary anti-inflammatory compounds such as flavonoids and omega-3 fatty acids, and increased intake of refined carbohydrates. Several studies that analyzed the pre-illness diet of patients with IBD have found that they habitually ate more refined sugar, chemically modified fats, processed and fast foods, and meat, while consuming less raw fruit, vegetables, omega-3 fatty acids and dietary fiber than healthy people.

The main drug approach in UC is the use of anti-inflammatory agents, corticosteroids like Prednisone, immune system modulators and antibiotics. These drugs are only palliative and offer no real path to complete resolution.

Resveratrol exerts a wide range of anti-inflammatory effects indicating a possible benefit in UC. In animal models of UC, resveratrol improved the disease activity index and decreased oxidative stress and inflammatory biomarkers.

New Data:
In a study sponsored by the National Nutrition and Food Technology of Iran, researchers sought to evaluate the effects of supplementation with resveratrol on inflammation and quality of life in patients with active UC in a double-blind, placebo-controlled format. The 50 eligible patients with active mild to moderate UC were given either 500 mg of resveratrol or a placebo capsule for 6 weeks. Serum inflammatory markers and quality of life assessments were conducted at baseline and at the end of the study.

Results showed that resveratrol supplementation led to a significant reduction in plasma levels of key inflammatory markers. Specifically, in the resveratrol group, the level of tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α), highly sensitive C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) and nuclear factor kappa-B (NF-κB) all showed statistically significant reductions. In contrast, no change was seen in the placebo group. Clinical evaluation also indicated a significant drop in the Clinical Colitis Activity Index Score decreased significantly in the resveratrol group, when compared with the placebo group.

The researchers concluded, “6 weeks supplementation with 500 mg resveratrol can improve quality of life and disease clinical colitis activity at least partially through inflammation reduction in patients with UC.”

Based upon the use of resveratrol for other applications, I question if a higher dosage (e.g., 500 mg two to three times daily) might have brought about even better results.

In addition to general measures to improve inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), I think the first step is an allergy elimination diet to address possible food allergies. In regards to nutritional supplementation, a broad-based nutritional supplementation plan is necessary for all patients with IBD. Particularly important are the nutrients zinc, folic acid, vitamin B12, magnesium, vitamin A, and vitamin D. Nutritional supplements are used as appropriate to correct deficiencies, normalize the inflammatory process, and promote healing of the damaged mucosa. Botanical medicines, including flavonoid-rich extracts or resveratrol, can be used to promote healing and normalize the intestinal flora.

Here are the key supplements that I recommend for IBD:
• High potency multivitamin and mineral supplement.
• Zinc picolinate: 15 mg/day in addition to the 15 to 30 mg in a high potency multiple
• Vitamin C: 500 to 1,000 mg daily
• Vitamin D: 2,000 to 5,000 IU daily
• Fish oil: 3,000 mg EPA+DHA daily
• Choose one of the following:
o Grape seed extract (>95% procyanidolic oligomers): 150 to 300 mg daily (or 1-2 mg per kg [2.2 pounds] body weight)
o Pine bark extract (>90% procyanidolic oligomers): 150 to 300 mg daily (or 1-2 mg per kg [2.2 pounds] body weight)
o Green tea extract (>90 polyphenol content): 300 to 450 mg daily
o Resveratrol: 500 mg two to three times daily.
• Probiotic supplement (providing various Lactobacillus and Bifidobacter sp.): minimum of 5 to 12 billion colony forming units daily
• Prebiotics (PGX®, inulin, fructose oligosaccharides, etc.): 5 g per day

Samsami-Kor M, Daryani NE, Asl PR, Hekmatdoost A. Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Resveratrol in Patients with Ulcerative Colitis: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-controlled Pilot Study. Arch Med Res. 2015 May;46(4):280-5.

Dr. Michael Murray

November 3rd, 2015

Unexpected Benefit from Furry Pets

When most people think of the benefits of having a dog, cat, or other furry animal they would likely associate feelings of the unconditional love these animals extend to their owners. Pets are often able to boost our mood and fight off feelings of loneliness. They are also able to produce a number of other proven health benefits enhancing social skills, decreasing a person’s risk of heart attack, and reducing the likelihood of allergies.

Historically, the popular medical thought was that furry pet ownership might lead to the development of allergies, but new data from population-based studies disputes this line of thinking. In fact, some studies show that furry pets actually reduce the development of allergies. A new study from the University of Turko in Finland indicates that the responsible factor maybe that exposure to furry animals leads to changes in the human gut flora and resultant changes in the human system to block allergies.

Background Data:
The rate of allergic diseases among urban populations worldwide has increased dramatically over recent years. It is thought that a reduction in the exposure to natural environmental factors may be responsible. One of the important environmental factors may be exposure to animals as several studies have shown that exposure to furry animals, including early-life contacts with livestock, has been reported to be protective against asthma and allergies. While most researchers have focused on the direct immune response to this exposure, there may be another factor – increased exposure to microbial diversity and its influence on the human microbiome.

New Data:
To explore the relationship to furry pet exposure and the development of allergic diseases like asthma, researchers in Finland examined the gut flora of children enrolled in an ongoing randomized placebo-controlled study in children with a family history of asthma, eczema, hayfever, or food allergy.

The researchers identified infants (n = 51) of families having at least 1 furry indoor pet during pregnancy and the first year of life. Infants (n = 64) from families with no pet were selected as controls in consecutive order of recruitment. To determine the development of allergies, skin prick tests (SPTs) were carried out at age 6 months. The antigens tested by SPT included cow’s milk, egg white, wheat and rice flour, cod, soy bean, birch, 6 grasses, cat, dog, dust mite, latex, potato, carrot, and banana. Infants with at least 1 positive SPT reaction were designated as atopic. At six months of age, 19 infants had reactions to at least one of the allergens tested.

The study team also collected fecal samples from diapers when the babies were one month of age. One of the tests performed was DNA analysis for two types of Bifidobacteria that are found specifically in furry animals gastrointestinal tracts and not humans: B. thermophilum and B. pseudolongum. The presence of these bacteria was associated with exposure to a dog, cat, or rabbit as a pet. One third of infants from the pet-exposed group had animal-specific bifidobacteria in their fecal samples, compared to 14 percent of the comparison group. So, even some infants without furry pets at home can acquire these bacteria and have them grow in their own microbiome. It is not difficult to be exposed to these bacteria in a manner that leads to growth in the human intestine. For example, when a dog licks an infant´s face or hand, the pet-derived bacteria can be transferred to the infant’s mouth and ultimately into the intestine.

The results from the analysis indicated that of the 19 children with positive SPTs, none had B. thermophilum bacteria in their fecal samples. This association was beyond coincidence and indicates that pet exposure early in life can have an impact on the composition of the human microbiome in a way that may reduce the risk of allergic diseases.

Here is the bottom line from this analysis, the gut flora (microbiome) plays a huge role in the proper development of the immune system and can prevent the development of allergies. In addition, as I highlighted in a previous newsletter featuring another analysis from this same clinical trial, probiotic supplementation during the first six months of life not only reduced the likelihood of allergies and infections, but also attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism spectrum disorders including Asperger’s syndrome. It appears that in addition to probiotic supplementation, exposure to furry pets can also help improve the human microbiome. Maybe, just perhaps, some of the benefits being attributed to therapy dogs (and horses) in kids on the autism spectrum as well as in other situations may be partly due to influencing the microbiome in a positive way.

Nermes M, Endo A, Aarnio J, Salminen S, Isolauri E. Furry pets modulate gut microbiota composition in infants at risk for allergic disease. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2015 Sep 3. pii: S0091-6749(15)01036-2.