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Minimizing breast cancer risk

May 2010

Time to move beyond salt ?

Salt hypothesis vs. reality

Is sodium bad?

April 2010

Salt studies: the latest score

From Dahl to INTERSALT

Salt hypothesis' story

March 2010

Salt war

Do bone drugs work?

Diabetes vs. drugs, 3:0?

February 2010

The MMR vaccine war: Wakefield vs. ?

Wakefield proceedings: an exception?

Who's afraid of a littl' 1998 study?
 

January 2010

Antibiotic children

Physical activity benefits late-life health

Healthier life for New Year's resolution

 

December 2009

Autism epidemic worsening: CDC report

Rosuvastatin indication broadened

High-protein diet effects

 

November 2009

Folic acid cancer risk

Folic acid studies: message in a bottle?

Sweet, short life on a sugary diet

 

October 2009

Smoking health hazards: no dose-response

C. difficile warning

Asthma risk and waist size in women

 

September 2009

Antioxidants' melanoma risk: 4-fold or none?

Murky waters of vitamin D status

Is vitamin D deficiency hurting you?

 

August 2009

Pill-crushing children

New gut test for children and adults

Unhealthy habits - whistling past the graveyard?

 

July 2009

Asthma solution - between two opposites that don't attract

Light wave therapy - how does it actually work?

Hodgkin's lymphoma in children: better alternatives

 

June 2009

Hodgkin's, kids, and the abuse of power

Efficacy and safety of the conventional treatment for Hodgkin's:
behind the hype

Long-term mortality and morbidity after conventional treatments for pediatric Hodgkin's

 

May 2009

Late health effects of the toxicity of the conventional treatment for Hodgkin's

Daniel's true 5-year chances with the conventional treatment for Hodgkin's

Daniel Hauser Hodgkin's case: child protection or medical oppression?

April 2009

Protection from EMF: you're on your own

EMF pollution battle: same old...

EMF health threat and the politics of status quo
 

March 2009

Electromagnetic danger? No such thing, in our view...

EMF safety standards: are they safe?

Power-frequency field exposure
 

February 2009

Electricity and health

Electromagnetic spectrum: health connection

Is power pollution making you sick?

January 2009

Pneumococcal vaccine for adults useless?

DHA in brain development study - why not boys?

HRT shrinks brains

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YOUR BODY    HEALTH RECIPE    NUTRITION    TOXINS    SYMPTOMS
                                                                                          

Body metabolism

Body metabolism   Cellular metabolism > Sugars > Amino acids > Fatty acids 
Metabolic type

It appears very simple to define: body metabolism is the totality of physiological and biochemical processes supporting its function. More simply, it is the body chemistry that supports life. The two main branches of the metabolic cycle are catabolism - the breakdown of complex compounds or molecules, into simpler ones - and anabolism, the synthesis of needed more complex compounds and molecules from simpler ones.

Specific chains of reactions through various metabolic stages are called metabolic pathways

These chemical reactions are made possible by enzymes, most of which first have to be synthesized by the body. The entire process is regulated by the nervous system, mainly via catabolic and anabolic hormones. Also, metabolic processes are often self-regulating, that is, the regulating signal can also be the level of a specific key metabolite itself.

The entire body metabolism depends on only three "simple ingredients":

food, water and oxygen.

The former two supply raw material needed for body's structural and functional needs. The latter is needed for the

final step in energy production

at the cellular level. While the body always has "fuel molecules" available - if no other, it can use its own tissue - it cannot burn them for energy without oxygen. Since it cannot store it, we have to keep breathing.

   Fuel molecules, as well as raw materials for the myriad of molecules needed for body's function and regeneration, are supplied by the food we eat. In the first catabolic stage, large, complex molecules of proteins, fats and carbohydrates - so called polymers - are broken down into smaller molecules, or monomers,  by the digestive process.

   Protein molecules are broken down to peptides (shorter chains of amino acids), and then to amino acids.

   Fats (lipids) are broken down to fatty acids and glycerol, while carbohydrates are split into poly- and disaccharides, and then into simple sugars (monosaccharides)

   These initial catabolic reactions are carried out by digestive enzymes. Digested food molecules become available for absorption by the cells of the inner intestinal lining (epithelium), passing them to the bloodstream.

    Blood collected from the intestinal vessels streams into the portal vain, which takes it to the liver. There, it is filtered from impurities and detoxified, before it is taken via hepatic artery to the heart, which pumps it out to the lungs, to take in the oxygen. Oxygen-and nutrient-rich blood from the lungs returns to the heart, from which it now heads to nourish cells throughout the body.

    Digested food molecules and oxygen are forced out of capillaries by hydrostatic (blood) pressure into extracellular fluid, and assimilated by the cells. This is where the second catabolic stage - breakdown of monomers - is taking place.

 Inside the cell, the two basic metabolic processes are taking place simultaneously: catabolic pathways harvest energy from molecular bonds through complex chemical manipulation of fuel molecules (monosaccharides, fatty acids and carbon skeletons of deaminated - i.e. stripped off their amino group - amino acids) supplied by food, while anabolic pathways, using energy created by catabolic reactions, use or synthesize needed basic molecules like amino acids (by transfer of amino groups, so called transamination), fatty acids and sugars to build larger, complex molecules - proteins, glycoproteins, lipoproteins, and others - needed for maintaining structural and functional integrity of the cell.

In general, new polymers - protein, fat and sugar molecules needed by the cell - are synthesized from monomers obtained from food, either directly, or by re-arranging their molecular structure. Monomers burned for energy are, in effect, oxidized to water and carbon dioxide.

All these processes are catalyzed by many thousands of highly specialized cellular enzymes.

From this very basic level builds up the architecture of the human body, seemingly effortlessly uniting its five basic functions: acquiring, distributing, protective, regulatory and motor.

So let's take a closer look at the foundation of what we are - cellular metabolism.

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