Vitamin D and the Infant Microbiome/The Many Benefits of Pomegranate Juice/A New Approach to Fibromyalgia


The objective of a recent study was to “investigate the potential of vitamin D to influence the presence and or abundance of several key bacterial taxa (populations) within the infant intestinal microbiota.” Operating on the assumption that one of the main roles of vitamin D in the body is to regulate the immune response, in order to maintain immune homeostasis, they theorized that vitamin D could impact intestinal colonization due to its immunomodulatory effects (preventing excessive immune responses in either direction).

There are only a few studies that have previously examined the effects of vitamin D status on the composition of intestinal microflora. One study was performed on vitamin D deficient mice, and two were done on humans (though in those human studies, the role of vitamin D on intestinal flora was not the primary objective of the studies). Nonetheless, those three studies all suggested, ”vitamin D may play a role in shaping the intestinal microbiota.”

Thus this study was done to follow up on the previous link between vitamin D and intestinal bacteria. And, it is the first report of a large scale observational study indicating that pre- or postnatal vitamin D exposure, influences several important bacterial colonies within the infant gut, supporting the postulation that vitamin D can influence the composition of the intestinal microbiota.

CONCLUSION: “Given that intestinal microbiotic homeostasis may be an important factor in the prevention of immune mediated diseases and that vitamin D status is a modifiable factor, further investigation of the impact of postnatal vitamin D supplementation should be conducted in older infants.”    (Study)


Pomegranate juice has been proven to have powerful antioxidant, anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties. But it doesn’t stop there.

Memory: Thirty-two subjects with memory problems were randomly assigned to drink 8 ounces of either pomegranate juice or a flavor-matched placebo drink for 4 weeks. They received memory-testing, functional MRI scans, and blood tests for biomarkers before and after the intervention. The conclusion was: “While preliminary, these results suggest a role for pomegranate juice in augmenting memory function through task-related increases in functional brain activity.”  Article Published Date : Dec 31, 2012  (Study)

 Atherosclerosis: A study on mice was done to determine the effect of pomegranate extract on coronary artery atherosclerosis (arterial plaque build-up). The conclusion was: “Pomegranate extract reduced aortic sinus and coronary artery atherosclerosis in SR-BI/apoE dKO mice. The atheroprotective effects of pomegranate extract appear to involve reduced oxidative stress and inflammation in the vessel wall despite unaltered systemic markers of inflammation and increased lipoprotein cholesterol in these mice.”   (Study)

Other clinically proven benefits of pomegranate juice include:

Anti-inflammatory: Aside from pain issues, chronic inflammation is also linked to many diseases.

Reducing High Blood Pressure: Pomegranate juice has natural angiotensin converting enzyme inhibiting properties, and elevates nitric oxide levels, both being pathways for reducing blood pressure.

Improved pregnancy and birth safety: Pomegranate juice has been found to protect the unborn fetus by reducing oxidative stress in the placenta.

Reducing symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis: Pomegranate juice reduces disease activity and oxidative stress in people with rheumatoid arthritis.

Protects the prostate: Pomegranate juice has been found to decrease PSA levels, as well as to inhibit the proliferation of cancer cells, and increase programmed cell death, in the prostates of men who have prostate cancer.

Aids in weight control: Pomegranate juice, though technically high in “sugar”, was found to contribute to a reduction in weight, without decreasing insulin sensitivity.




Recently  I wrote a detailed blog on the benefits of wine, and the excessive use of pesticides on grapes, but it was recently brought to my attention that I missed one pesticide that is particularly noxious. This pesticide is known as Cryolite.

Due to high toxicity and an inability of pests to build a tolerance to it, fluoride has been used as a pesticide for decades. There are two fluoride-based pesticides that are allowed to be sprayed on food in North America: Cryolite and sulfuryl fluoride. Even worse than just the dangers that synthetic fluoride can cause in the body, is the fact that cryolite contains “aluminofluoride ions that shed fluoride ions, which then pass through the blood-brain barrier and contaminate brain tissue.”

Cryolite is the more commonly used fluoride-based pesticide, and it is widely used on grapes, particularly white grapes, especially those grown in California. It is primarily used in California because of specific pests that reside there, which means that buying wine and grapes from other states, or from outside the U.S., will reduce your exposure to toxic fluorides. For example neither Oregon nor Washington State uses cryolite, because they do not have to deal with the same pests as California does. (Source) (I could find no information on its use in Canada.)

Many California wines, in fact, have levels of fluoride so high that they cannot be exported to Europe and other places where allowable levels for fluoride are lower than they are in the U.S. Wines made in other countries, including France, Germany, Italy, and Spain will also have lower levels of fluoride overall since the grapes used to make them are not treated with cryolite.  (Source)

And, of course it is not only wine and grapes that can contain this toxin, but also grape juice and other juice drinks, jams, and desserts that contain grape juice concentrate as a sweetener.

Cryolite is also allowed to be sprayed on other crops, though the data on who uses it and what the residual fluoride levels is on such produce, proves much more difficult to find than that of grapes and grape products. But, since we know that it is primarily used on grapes grown in California, we can probably assume that other non-organic produce from California would be likewise contaminated. Other crops which can use cryolite include: Apricot, Broccoli, Brussels Sprout, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Citrus fruit, Collards, Eggplant, Kale, Kiwifruit, Lettuce, Melon, Nectarine, Peach, Pepper, Plum, Pumpkin, Squash, Tomato, and Berries (Blackberry, Blueberry, Boysenberry, Cranberry, Raspberry, and Strawberry).  (Source)



Fibromyalgia is a progressive disease which affects millions of people, primarily women. Fibromyalgia commonly affects the muscles and soft tissue, with symptoms that include chronic muscle pain, fatigue, sleep problems, and painful tender spots that can vary in location. As well, fibromyalgia can also affect the central nervous system.

This is a poorly understood disease with no easy treatment, but there is a doctor who has a unique, highly effective approach, especially valuable for those whose lives are severely impacted by this disease. Dr. R. Paul St. Amand, M.D, is the author of “What Your Doctor May NOT Tell You About Fibromyalgia”, which is based on what he calls the “Guaifenesin Protocol.”

He believes that “a defective metabolism, possibly a kidney enzyme, forces a minuscule retention of phosphate, which gradually accumulates to detrimental levels in many tissues. The excess results in inadequate energy formation (ATP), cellular fatigue and other malfunctions that explain all the symptoms of fibromyalgia.”

He recommends the use of guaifenesin, a pharmaceutical drug marketed for respiratory mucus problems, and commonly added to decongestants and cough medicines. This is a very safe compound, even when used on children and the elderly, has no side effects, and is available without a prescription. However, for the purposes of treating fibromyalgia, one cannot use the versions that are mixed with decongestant and cough medicines. Those interested in this approach should visit Dr. St. Amand’s website to find effective guaifenesin products, and the protocol recommended for treatment.

The tricky part of his protocol, and why it will mostly be undertaken by those whose lives are severely disrupted by fibromyalgia, is the required avoidance of all medicines, supplements, foods, and topical skin products, that include salicylates. While aspirin is the most obvious source of salicylates (acetylsalicylic acid), they are found everywhere and will “completely block the benefits of guaifenesin for fibromyalgia. Using it with salicylates causes no ill-effects, it simply negates the drug’s effectiveness for fibromyalgia.” His website does provide a list of all substances containing salicylates which must be avoided.    (Source)

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

* indicates required
  • Contact

  • NutriStart Vitamin Company

  • 14-755 Vanalman Avenue

  • Victoria, BC

  • 1-800-813-4233

Scroll to Top