Dr. Alex Jimenez Discusses What to Eat to Improve DNA Methylation
Methylation is a fundamental process which occurs in every cell of the human body. It is utilized to promote a variety of bodily processes, such as producing and regulating hormones and neurotransmitters, developing immune cells, and managing the detoxification of exogenous substances, as well as clearing histamine, among other essential processes. Methylation is also important for cellular renewal to help modify genetic expression.
By changing your diet and lifestyle you can optimize your DNA methylation to improve your overall health and wellness. If you have a methylation deficit, such as an altered MTHFR gene or increased homocysteine levels, you can improve your DNA methylation by eating a variety of healthy foods.
Methylation support can benefit many health issues, including; aging, pregnancy preparation, pregnancy lactation, prolonged strenuous physical activity, ADD/ADHD, addiction, allergies, Alzheimer’s disease, anxiety, asthma, atherosclerosis, autism, behavioral changes, bipolar disorder, cancer, chemical sensitivities, chronic fatigue, cleft palate, diabetes, dementia, depression, Down syndrome, hypertension, fertility problems, fibromyalgia, insomnia, multiple sclerosis, neural tube defects, neuropathy, ocular disease, Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia, and thyroid disease.
What to Eat for Methylation Support
The following articles will focus on what you can eat to promote methylation support. The utilization of supplements as well as drugs and/or medications to improve DNA methylation can cause a variety of undesirable side-effects if these are not monitored accordingly by healthcare professionals and patients alike. In part 1, we will demonstrate what you can eat to improve DNA methylation from the category of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, legumes, and grains, as well as herbs and spices. Our ultimate goal is to help you achieve optimal methylation support.
Fruits are an excellent source of nutrients which can provide a variety of methylation adaptogens. Fruits with a low-glycemic index, such as wild berries, have less sugar than their larger, commercially-produced counterparts.
The following list of fruits can promote methylation support while those in bold are especially high in methylation adaptogens, including; apples, apricots, avocado, bananas, blackberries, blackcurrant, blueberries, cantaloupe, cherries, clementines, coconut, cranberries, elderberries, figs, gooseberries, grapefruit, grapes, guava, honeydew melon, kiwi, kumquat, lemons, limes, lychees, mandarins, mango, mulberries, nectarines, olives, oranges, papaya, passion fruit, peaches, pears, persimmon, pineapple, plums, pomegranate, quince, raspberries, rhubarb, strawberries, tamarind, tangerines, and watermelon.
Vegetables are a key component for methylation support because they provide many nutrients and flavonoids which are methylation adaptogens. Methylation adaptogens help regulate methylation status in the human body, particularly at our DNA level. These adaptogens have been demonstrated to prevent or reverse over-methylation as well as support healthy methylation activity. Moreover, dietary fiber is essential to promote a balanced microbiome as well as the efficient removal of toxins. The healthy microbes in our gut actually produce considerable amounts of methylation nutrients. But only when consuming a proper diet that includes fiber. Low-glycemic vegetables are an excellent source of fiber. Color variation will provide the most diverse amount of flavonoid methylation adaptogens.
The following list of vegetables can promote methylation support while those in bold are especially supportive of methylation activity, including; alfalfa sprouts, artichokes, arugula, asparagus, bamboo shoots, basil, beet leaves, beets, bok choy, broccoflower, broccoli, broccoli leaves, broccoli raab, rapini, broccoli sprouts, brussels sprouts, cabbage, capers, carrots, cauliflower, celeriac, celery, chicory, collard greens, daikon radish, dandelion greens, eggplant, endive, escarole, fennel, garlic, grape leaves, green beans, heart of palm, horseradish, jerusalem artichokes, jicama, kale, kohlrabi, lambsquarters, leeks, lettuces, mushrooms (all other), mustard greens, okra, olives, onions, parsnips, peppers, pumpkin, pumpkin Flower, purslane, radicchio, radish sprouts, radishes, rutabaga, scallion, sea vegetables (e.g. kelp, kombu, nori, bladderwrack, wakame), shallots, shiitake mushrooms, snap peas, snow peas, spinach, summer squash, sun-dried tomatoes, swiss chard, tomatillos, tomatoes, turnip greens, turnips, water chestnut, watercress, winter squash, yam, and zucchini.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are an important factor to improve DNA methylation. They are high in Omega-3 fatty acids, minerals, and B vitamins as well as fiber and antioxidants. Raw, unprocessed nuts and seeds, with skins where appropriate (e.g. almonds), are more densely concentrated with antioxidants.
The following list of nuts and seeds can promote methylation support while those in bold are considered methylation superfoods, including; almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, chestnuts, chia seeds, flaxseeds, hazelnuts, hemp seeds, macadamia nuts, pecans, pine nuts, poppy seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, and walnuts.
Legumes can be valuable sources of a variety of methylation-associated nutrients, such as magnesium, potassium, folate, choline, and sulfur. They are also an excellent source of fiber to support a healthy microbiome.
Healthcare professionals recommend that you soak and sprout your legumes before cooking to improve their digestibility and nutrient bioavailability. This also reduces leptin levels, which can be helpful for people with gut symptoms and/or worsened autoimmune symptoms. You can do this by soaking the legumes overnight in plenty of water, then drain, rinse, and return them to their container. Leave loosely covered with a clean tea towel between 6 to 24 hours until you see tiny sprout ends starting to appear. They are now ready to cook.
The following list of vegetables can promote methylation support while those in bold are especially supportive of methylation activity, including; adzuki beans, black beans, black lentils, black-eyed peas, brown lentils, cannellini beans, fava beans, garbanzo beans, great northern beans, green lentils, kidney beans, lima beans, mung beans, navy beans, pinto beans, red beans, red lentils, soy/soybeans (especially fermented varieties such as tempeh, miso, tamari, natto, pickled tofu), split peas, and turtle beans.
Grains can also be an excellent source of magnesium, B vitamins and chromium, which helps regulate blood sugar levels. Some grains, such as oats, provide sulfur which can help decrease the depletion of methylation nutrients to support sulfur detoxification. Whole grains are also an excellent source of fiber. However, many individuals do not tolerate grains. Gluten-sensitivity or Celiac Disease, by way of instance, requires avoiding the consumption of grains with gluten, such as barley, bulgur, Kamut, regular oats, rye, spelt, and wheat. Grains, especially whole grains, also contain leptin, which some individuals may not tolerate. Moreover, the consumption of grains can make it difficult to control blood sugar levels.
If you are going to eat grains, always make sure to choose whole grains. Furthermore, decrease or completely avoid grains which have been ground into flour because the human body can absorb their glucose too rapidly when they have been milled. You can also soak your grains before cooking them to improve their digestibility and nutrient bioavailability. Some soaked grains, such as quinoa, can also be sprouted before cooking, to further improve their nutrient levels and help reduce their leptin content.
The following list of grains can promote methylation support while those in bold are especially good choices for methylation support, including; amaranth, barley, buckwheat, bulgur, corn, Kamut, millet, quinoa, oats, rice (basmati, bran, brown, wild), rye (dark rye), sorghum, spelt, tapioca, teff, and wheat.
Herbs and Spices
Herbs and spices are ultimately an important additional category of methylation adaptogens. As a matter of fact, they are extremely important and effective even in seemingly-small quantities. There are a variety of ways in which people can incorporate herbs and spices into their cooking, such as in marinades, rubs, dressings, drinks, and even sprinkled into and/or onto dishes.
The following list of herbs and spices can promote methylation support while those in bold are especially rich in methylation adaptogens, including; allspice, anise, basil, bay leaves, black pepper, caraway, cardamom, cayenne pepper, chamomile, chili, chives, cilantro (coriander leaves), cinnamon, cloves, coriander seeds, cumin, curry leaves, dill, fennel seeds, fenugreek, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, marjoram, methi, mint, mustard seeds, nigella seeds (black cumin), nutmeg, oregano, paprika, parsley, rosemary, sage, sumac, tarragon, thyme, turmeric, and vanilla bean.
DNA methylation is a fundamental process in charge of a variety of essential bodily functions. Many individuals, however, can develop methylation activity deficits which can tremendously affect their overall health and wellness. Supplements and medicines can be utilized to help improve DNA methylations but these may often cause several undesirable side-effects, A balanced nutrition can help safely and effectively treat these deficits and improve methylation support. The purpose of the following articles is to easily demonstrate what you can eat to improve DNA methylation from a variety of different food groups. Dr. Alex Jimenez D.C., C.C.S.T. Insight
Smoothies and Juices for Methylation Support
While many healthcare professionals can recommend nutritional guidelines and lifestyle modifications to improve methylation support, there are several options you can try yourself at home. As described above, methylation support supplementation should be determined by a healthcare professional. Smoothies and juices are a fast and easy way to include all the necessary nutrients you need for methylation support without any side-effects. The smoothies and juices below are part of the Methylation Diet Food Plan.
Sea Green Smoothie Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes • 1/2 cup cantaloupe, cubed • 1/2 banana • 1 handful of kale or spinach • 1 handful of Swiss chard • 1/4 avocado • 2 teaspoons spirulina powder • 1 cup water • 3 or more ice cubes Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until completely smooth and enjoy!
Berry Bliss Smoothie Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes • 1/2 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen, preferably wild) • 1 medium carrot, roughly chopped • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed or chia seed • 1 tablespoons almonds • Water (to desired consistency) • Ice cubes (optional, may omit if using frozen blueberries) Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth and creamy. Best served immediately!
Sweet and Spicy Juice Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes • 1 cup honeydew melons • 3 cups spinach, rinsed • 3 cups Swiss chard, rinsed • 1 bunch cilantro (leaves and stems), rinsed • 1-inch knob of ginger, rinsed, peeled and chopped • 2-3 knobs whole turmeric root (optional), rinsed, peeled and chopped Juice all ingredients in a high-quality juicer. Best served immediately!
Ginger Greens Juice Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes • 1 cup pineapple cubes • 1 apple, sliced • 1-inch knob of ginger, rinsed, peeled and chopped • 3 cups kale, rinsed and roughly chopped or ripped • 5 cups Swiss chard, rinsed and roughly chopped or ripped Juice all ingredients in a high-quality juicer. Best served immediately!
Zesty Beet Juice Servings: 1 Cook time: 5-10 minutes • 1 grapefruit, peeled and sliced • 1 apple, washed and sliced • 1 whole beet, and leaves if you have them, washed and sliced • 1-inch knob of ginger, rinsed, peeled and chopped Juice all ingredients in a high-quality juicer. Best served immediately!
Protein Power Smoothie Serving: 1 Cook time: 5 minutes • 1 scoop protein powder • 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed • 1/2 banana • 1 kiwi, peeled • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon • Pinch of cardamom • Non-dairy milk or water, enough to achieve desired consistency Blend all ingredients in a high-powered blender until completely smooth. Best served immediately!
ProLon® Fasting Mimicking Diet
Balanced methylation support can be achieved through proper nutrition. The ProLon® fasting mimicking diet offers a 5-day meal program which has been individually packed and labeled to serve the foods you need for the FMD in precise quantities and combinations. The meal program is made up of ready-to-eat or easy-to-prepare, plant-based foods, including bars, soups, snacks, supplements, a drink concentrate, and teas. The products are scientifically formulated and great tasting. Before starting the ProLon® fasting mimicking diet, 5-day meal program, please make sure to talk to a healthcare professional to find out if the FMD is right for you. The ProLon® fasting mimicking diet can help promote methylation support, among a variety of other healthy benefits.
Many doctors and functional medicine practitioners can recommend nutritional advice and/or guidelines to help improve DNA methylation. Proper nutrition and lifestyle habits can ultimately help improve DNA methylation. In part 2 of this article, we will continue to discuss what you can eat to improve DNA methylation. The scope of our information is limited to chiropractic, musculoskeletal and nervous health issues as well as functional medicine articles, topics, and discussions. To further discuss the subject matter above, please feel free to ask Dr. Alex Jimenez or contact us at 915-850-0900 .
Curated by Dr. Alex Jimenez
Additional Topic Discussion: Acute Back Pain
Back pain is one of the most prevalent causes of disability and missed days at work worldwide. Back pain attributes to the second most common reason for doctor office visits, outnumbered only by upper-respiratory infections. Approximately 80 percent of the population will experience back pain at least once throughout their life. Your spine is a complex structure made up of bones, joints, ligaments, and muscles, among other soft tissues. Injuries and/or aggravated conditions, such as herniated discs, can eventually lead to symptoms of back pain. Sports injuries or automobile accident injuries are often the most frequent cause of back pain, however, sometimes the simplest of movements can have painful results. Fortunately, alternative treatment options, such as chiropractic care, can help ease back pain through the use of spinal adjustments and manual manipulations, ultimately improving pain relief.
Formulas for Methylation Support
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