Dr. Ron’s Research Review – August 3, 2011

This week’s research review focuses on reverse T3 and insulin resistance, elderly survival, and earthing.

T3/rT3-ratio is associated with insulin resistance independent of TSH (Ruhla, Arafat et al. 2011)

Increased reverse triiodothyronine is associated with shorter survival in independently-living elderly: the Alsanut study. (Forestier, Vinzio et al. 2009)

Earthing during night rest decreases free tri-iodothyronine and increases free thyroxine and thyroid-stimulating hormone. The continuous earthing of the human body decreases blood glucose in patients with diabetes. Earthing decreases sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, total protein, and albumin concentrations while the levels of transferrin, ferritin, and globulins alpha1, alpha2, beta, and gamma increase. (Sokal and Sokal 2011)

Dr. Ron


Articles

T3/rT3-ratio is associated with insulin resistance independent of TSH

            (Ruhla, Arafat et al. 2011) Download

Thyroid dysfunction has been shown to be associated with insulin resistance (IR). This may involve peripheral thyroid hormone metabolism, which is assumed to be reflected by the ratio triiodothyronine/reverse triiodothyronine (T3/rT3-ratio). To explore a potential association between the T3/rT3-ratio and IR we investigated pairs which differed in IR, but were matched by sex, age, body mass index (BMI), and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH). For this purpose, matched pair analyses were embedded into a cross sectional study group. 22 pairs were matched from either the first or the third tertile of HOMA%S of a cohort of 353 euthyroid subjects with normal glucose metabolism who did not take any medication. The T3/rT3-ratio was compared in the matched pairs. The T3/rT3-ratio was significantly increased in the insulin resistant subjects compared to their insulin sensitive partners (8.78 +/- 0.47 vs. 7.33 +/- 0.33, p=0.019). Furthermore the T3/rT3-ratio was lower in men compared to women (p for the within-subject effect=0.046) both in the insulin sensitive and the insulin resistant subjects. Here we show that the T3/rT3-ratio, which is supposed to reflect the tissue thyroid hormone metabolism, is significantly increased in insulin resistant subjects. This further supports a link between thyroid function and IR.

Increased reverse triiodothyronine is associated with shorter survival in independently-living elderly: the Alsanut study

            (Forestier, Vinzio et al. 2009) Download

OBJECTIVE: Increased reverse tritiodothyronine (T(3)) used to be described as a part of euthyroid sick syndrome (ESS). It was demonstrated to be associated with increased mortality in acutely ill patients. It can also be found with low or normal T(3) in non-severely ill subjects but its significance remains unclear. PATIENTS AND DESIGN: The Alsanut study included a representative sample of 440 independently-living subjects aged 65 or over constituted between January 1988 and September 1989. Past and current medical history and nutritional data were collected at inclusion. Baseline thyroid hormone (TSH, FT(4), FT(3) and rT(3)) serum levels were measured. Life status was determined on 1 December 2005. RESULTS: Of the 374 elderly subjects included in the final analysis, 52 had abnormal TSH (43 with hyperthyroidism, nine with hypothyroidism) and 80.7% had died by 1 December 2005. There was no statistical difference in survival between subjects according to thyroid function (P=0.54). Of the 322 elderly subjects with normal TSH, mortality rate was 81.1%. ESS was found in 3.4%, whereas 8.1% of the participants displayed elevated rT(3) with normal FT(3). Time to death was strongly related to rT(3) (P<0.0001) and FT(3) (P<0.0001) in a univariate analysis. After adjusting for other confounding variables, rT(3) was the only thyroid hormone associated with shorter survival (P=0.014). CONCLUSIONS: RT(3) was the only thyroid hormone associated with shorter survival in a representative population of independently-living elderly. In these subjects, isolated elevated rT(3) might be an equivalent of ESS, reflecting declining health.

Earthing the human body influences physiologic processes

            (Sokal and Sokal 2011) Download

OBJECTIVES: This study was designed to answer the question: Does the contact of the human organism with the Earth via a copper conductor affect physiologic processes? Subjects and experiments: Five (5) experiments are presented: experiment 1-effect of earthing on calcium-phosphate homeostasis and serum concentrations of iron (N = 84 participants); experiment 2-effect of earthing on serum concentrations of electrolytes (N = 28); experiment 3-effect of earthing on thyroid function (N = 12); experiment 4-effect of earthing on glucose concentration (N = 12); experiment 5-effect of earthing on immune response to vaccine (N = 32). Subjects were divided into two groups. One (1) group of people was earthed, while the second group remained without contact with the Earth. Blood and urine samples were examined. RESULTS: Earthing of an electrically insulated human organism during night rest causes lowering of serum concentrations of iron, ionized calcium, inorganic phosphorus, and reduction of renal excretion of calcium and phosphorus. Earthing during night rest decreases free tri-iodothyronine and increases free thyroxine and thyroid-stimulating hormone. The continuous earthing of the human body decreases blood glucose in patients with diabetes. Earthing decreases sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, total protein, and albumin concentrations while the levels of transferrin, ferritin, and globulins alpha1, alpha2, beta, and gamma increase. These results are statistically significant. CONCLUSIONS: Earthing the human body influences human physiologic processes. This influence is observed during night relaxation and during physical activity. Effect of the earthing on calcium-phosphate homeostasis is the opposite of that which occurs in states of weightlessness. It also increases the activity of catabolic processes. It may be the primary factor regulating endocrine and nervous systems.


References

Forestier, E., S. Vinzio, et al. (2009). "Increased reverse triiodothyronine is associated with shorter survival in independently-living elderly: the Alsanut study." Eur J Endocrinol 160(2): 207-14.

Ruhla, S., A. M. Arafat, et al. (2011). "T3/rT3-ratio is associated with insulin resistance independent of TSH." Horm Metab Res 43(2): 130-4.

Sokal, K. and P. Sokal (2011). "Earthing the human body influences physiologic processes." J Altern Complement Med 17(4): 301-8.