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A to Z Nutrients

A

Vitamin A
Acetyl l-Carnitine
Acidophilus
Alfalfa
Aloe Vera
Alpha-Ketoglutarate
Alpha-Lipoic Acid
American Ginseng See: Ginseng, American
Amla
Angelica Root
Anise Seed
Arginine
Arnica Flower
Ashwagandha

Vitamin A is an oil-soluble nutrient found preformed in fish liver oil and some other animal products, and as provitamin A (beta carotene) in carrots, broccoli, spinach, and other vegetables. It is necessary for growth and repair of body tissues, and is especially important for healthy eyes and skin. It aids in bone and teeth formation, fights bacterial infection, and is essential for a healthy mucous membrane lining, in the stomach, intestines, sinuses, etc. Signs of deficiency may include: night blindness; rough, dry, scaly skin; increased susceptibility to infections; fatigue, insomnia, depression; loss of smell and appetite; lusterless hair; brittle nails; and inflamed eyelids. Recommended amounts are:
Infants: 1400-2000 IU
Children: 2000--4000 IU
Adults: 4000-5000 IU
Long-term ingestion of 50,000 or more IU may be toxic.

Acetyl l-Carnitine plays a key role in maintaining normal brain and nerve function during aging. It has been shown to maintain cellular membrane activity, and to restore age related membrane changes. It also is an antioxidant- it scavenges super oxide anion radicals which can otherwise damage membrane lipids.
Acetyl l-carnitine increases cerebral blood flow. It has a major effect on short term memory and it effects major depression and changes in the circadian hormonal rhythms, similar to melatonin. (top)

Acidophilus and other lactic bacteria are one-celled micro-organisms that are essential in the digestive tract, performing many functions necessary to promote immunity and proper nutrition. I consider lactic bacterial products to be the most important products a person can purchase at Vitamin Express! Such bacteria help digestion, produce natural antibiotics, manufacture vital nutrients, regulate elimination and make everything else that one eats absorb better. Acidophilus is my favorite cure-all for balancing digestion, diarrhea, constipation, and I've had great luck with sucking on a capsule for a sore throat or canker sore from acidic food and rancid oils. We have many different products and forms to choose from: powder, tablets, capsules or liquid. (top)

Alfalfa (Medicago sativa) Nutritive herb with high mineral and vitamin content including Vit. K and iron; estrogen precursor for menopause; mild diuretic. (top)

Aloe vera. Applied fresh as a burn and wound remedy, astringent. Fresh peeled leaf inserted as a rectal suppository for hemorrhoids. For chronic constipation with atonic bowel. (top)

Alpha Ketoglutarate (AKG) is an amino acid with important functions in the Krebs Cycle (cell energy production). It increases stamina and recovery time, and reduces the buildup of lactic acid in the muscles. It is also a receptor for ammonia, a waste product of protein metabolism. The results are greater mental clarity, and better physical performance! (top)

Alpha-Lipoic Acid is a remarkable metabolic antioxidant readily transported through cellular membranes. It also helps recycle other antioxidants! What this means is that when vitamin E quenches lipid peroxidation a vitamin E radical is formed and that radical is reduced back to vitamin E by lipoic acid. It does a similar task with vitamin C, in turn Vitamin C can also reduce vitamin E. Not only does lipoic acid play a role in lipid (fat) environments, but also in aqueous (water) environments where it can inactivate hydroxyl and peroxyl radicals, singlet oxygen, hypochlorous acid, and nitric oxide. Lipoic acid acts as a catalyst and chelator. In Europe it has been used for detoxification of heavy metal poisoning, possible application in atherosclerosis, side effects of diabetes, oxidative stress, and it may exert a protective effect against the formation of cataracts.

Most recent research now indicates that Lipoic Acid prevents HIV replication. It has the ability to protect the genetic material, DNA, in the cell nucleus and protect NF kappa-B in the cytosol and most important it is able to bolster the cellular glutathione levels in the system and in lymphocytes! Presently there are several companies that sell lipoic acid. We have sold it for about five years from Cardiovascular Research; now it is also available from MRI, Jarrow, Twin Lab, and others. (top)

Amla is considered a rejuvenator in Ayurvedic medicine. It is perhaps the richest source of vitamin C found in nature. (top)

Angelica Root (Angelica archangelica) Antispasmodic, for strong menstrual cramps with scanty flow; intestinal colic and poor digestion; stimulating expectorant for coughs. (top)

Anise Seed (Pimpinella anisum) Eases indigestion, flatulence and colic. Antispasmodic and expectorant. (top)

Arginine, evidence suggests, may help turn body fat into muscle, improve immunity to disease, promote healing and combat arthritis. Now considered a nutritionally essential amino acid, L-arginine is used in the body in the construction of important structural proteins and enzymes. It also stimulates the release of insulin, growth hormone and helps produce creatine phosphate, which is a compound required for muscle contraction. The brain has a special need for L-arginine. It is also used by the body to make vasopressin, an antidiuretic hormone which decreases urine volume to maintain fluid. Vasopressin also can enhance memory. L-arginine is a component of the hormones insulin and glucagon, and of collagen, elastin, and hemoglobin. (top)

L-arginine improves T-cell production, and Pearson and Shaw suggest that L-arginine is effective against arthritis which is caused by an inadequate activity of T-suppressor white cells thereby causing the body to attack itself and produce inflammation. They also report L-arginine blocks formation of tumors in mice inoculated with MSV (a cancer-causing virus). Like L-ornithine, L-arginine is helpful in reducing plaque, stimulating wound healing, and helps in the regeneration of the liver. Large quantities of L-arginine may be tolerated differently by different people according to their biochemical individuality. L-Arginine may increase the severity of symptoms in some schizophrenics. In L-lysine-deficient diets, supplemental L-arginine could facilitate a Herpes Simplex flare-up in some individuals. L-arginine-rich foods like chocolate and brazil nuts should also be avoided. (top)

Arnica Flower Linament (Arnica spp.) Topical use for bruises, sprains. strains and other athletic injuries, including swelling. Use on unbroken skin. (top)

Ashwagandha, or Winter Cherry (Withnia somnifera), is a small branching hairy shrub found in the arid wastelands of Himalayan India. It has adaptogenic properties similar to Chinese ginseng, and it has traditionally been used as an aphrodisiac and a rasayana in Ayurveda. It is particularly rejuvenative to the muscle tissues and sexual fluids. It also may assist in calming those suffering from chronic exhaustion. The active constituents are called Withanolides. (top)