Giving children allergies with pets

This 2021 human study investigated development and persistence of allergies:

“Allergic rhinitis (AR) is a common IgE-mediated disorder involving troublesome symptoms of nasal congestion, nasal itch, sneezing, and associated eye symptoms. Like many chronic health conditions, AR stems from complex gene–environment interactions.

130 subjects with AR were recruited. Control population included 154 healthy children who underwent a regular physical examination in the same ear, nose and throat clinic as AR patients. Individuals with history of asthma or atopic dermatitis were excluded.

AR analysis

Plenty of contradictory associations exist as whether furred pet exposure (cats and dogs) may be a risk or a protective factor for AR development. Discrepancies are likely due to the ubiquitous nature of pet allergens, while pet owners are more concerned about sanitation and many other hygiene-related reasons.

Interaction of early-life pet exposure with methylation level of ADAM33 increased the risk for AR onset 1.423 times more in children. This study provides evidence that:

  • Early-life pet exposure and low methylation level of ADAM33 increase AR risk in children; and
  • The interaction between pet exposure and methylation level of ADAM33 may play an important role in development of AR.” “Interaction between early-life pet exposure and methylation pattern of ADAM33 on allergic rhinitis among children aged 3–6 years in China”

There’s nothing children can do about who their parents were. Exposing them to pet allergens, though, may be another example of early-life experiences causing lifelong effects.

Happy Mothers Day

This 2021 rodent study investigated effects on offspring of maternal high-fat diet (HFD) during gestation and lactation, and offspring HFD during young adulthood:

“We found that gestation was the most sensitive period to induce obesity in late life, and there was no difference between sexes in chance of obesity. Furthermore, we found that lactation and administration of a HFD post‐weaning increased incidence of lipid metabolism disorders and obesity in offspring.

gestational hfd effects on offspring

There are different windows of opportunity for programming epigenetically labile genes. Some studies support the alteration of epigenetic status during development as an important cause induced adult obesity.

Gestation is considered as the most sensitive period because high DNA synthesis and DNA methylation patterns are established for normal tissue development during the embryonic period. These two programming events are the times when the epigenetic state changes most widely in the life cycle.” “Gestational high-fat diet impaired demethylation of Pparα and induced obesity of offspring”

Hey mothers! Do what you please. But don’t turn around and deny consequences of your behavior and choices on your descendants’ physiology and behavior, and possibly those of further descendants.

Gestation, birth, infancy, and early childhood are critical periods for humans. There’s no going back to correct errors and problems.

Does skin improvement cause overall effects?

This 2019 human skin study found:

“We demonstrated in aged mice that epidermal dysfunction largely accounted for age-associated elevations in circulating cytokine levels, and that improving epidermal function reduced circulating cytokine levels. We performed a pilot study to determine whether improving epidermal function reduces circulating proinflammatory cytokine levels in aged humans.

Both aged human and mouse skin display sustained abnormalities in epidermal permeability barrier homeostasis, stratum corneum (SC) hydration, and elevations in SC pH 4-6, each of which has been shown to independently provoke cutaneous inflammation. Disruption of the epidermal permeability barrier provoked an increase in:

  1. Cutaneous cytokine production; and
  2. Serum cytokine levels, independent of hepatic or T cell involvement.

We assessed whether improving epidermal function with an emollient, containing a mixture of lipids that mimics components of normal SC, lowered circulating levels of these same pro-inflammatory cytokines in aged humans.

skin treatment

After 30 days of twice-daily topical treatments, circulating levels of IL-1β and IL-6 decreased significantly in the treated aged cohort vs. untreated aged controls. Topical treatments reduced circulating levels of IL-1β and IL-6 to levels comparable to young controls. Though levels of TNF-α declined by over 40% in comparison to untreated aged humans, the difference did not attain statistical significance.

Results of this preliminary study suggest that a larger clinical trial should be performed to confirm whether improving epidermal function also can reduce circulating proinflammatory cytokine levels in aged humans, while also possibly attenuating downstream development of chronic inflammatory disorders.” “Topical applications of an emollient reduce circulating pro‐inflammatory cytokine levels in chronically aged humans: a pilot clinical study” (not freely available)

I discussed enrolling in a trial whose objective would be to test this study’s findings. No big deal, just have to take IL-6 and TNF-α measurements in an upcoming annual physical. Then apply that trial’s skin treatment for 30 days per this study’s twice-daily protocol.

Day 70 results from Changing to a youthful phenotype with broccoli sprouts provided some of last year’s measurements. IL-6 was already at a negligible 1.0 pg / ml, one-fifth of the above Baseline Young group’s 5.1 ± 0.9.

IL-6 2020

Probably won’t want my data, since their treatment wouldn’t be expected to lower an already very low inflammation marker.

Weight loss for the lazy

At the risk of becoming Dr. Paul Clayton’s echo chamber, another great blog post, Falling Down:

“When lab rats or mice are weighted down with lead pellets they lose substantial amounts of weight, almost exclusively adipose tissue. Unlike dieting, there is little if any loss of muscle mass, making lead an ideal weight loss strategy for the lazy.

A clinical trial generated the same result. Their paper concludes, ‘Increased weight loading reduces body weight and fat mass in obese subjects in a similar way as previously shown in obese rodents. These findings demonstrate that there is a loading-dependent homeostatic regulation of body weight, the gravitostat, also in humans.’

Polyphenol resveratrol protects against damaging effects of de-loading by acting as an exercise mimetic, and does so by activating AMP-K directly. Other nutrients which do the same thing include polyphenol quercetin, sapogenin dammaranes, and omega 3 fatty acid EPA.”

The doctor still doesn’t mention sulforaphane, although it activates the AMPK pathway on the way to its primary effect of Nrf2 activation. First time I’d seen the term covidiots.

“You can fool some people sometimes
But you can’t fool all the people all the time
And now you’ve seen the light
Stand up for your rights”

Part 2 of Broccoli sprouts activate the AMPK pathway

This 2021 review subject was metformin’s role in autophagy:

“Metformin had been used as the first choice for treating diabetes for almost a century. Autophagy is responsible for recycling and degrading cellular components, which significantly affects cell functions in physiology and pathology.

Effects of metformin on autophagy mainly depend on corresponding signaling pathways in specific organs or tissues. Metformin can induce autophagy in cells of many organs and tissues via affirmed signaling pathways, such as AMPK-related signaling pathways.


Different signaling pathways (alone or in combination) mediated the process of metformin affecting autophagy in different organs or tissues. It is necessary to combine effects of metformin on autophagy with pharmacological effects on pathologies in different organs or tissues, which would provide indications for future metformin applications.” “The effects of metformin on autophagy”

I characterized this review as Part 2 of Broccoli sprouts activate the AMPK pathway because that study’s experimental evidence showed sulforaphane activation of the AMPK pathway was a predecessor to sulforaphane’s main effects of Nrf2 pathway activation. This review didn’t even mention Nrf2 activation.

Do all of metformin’s cited effects apply to daily intake of broccoli sprouts? Probably not, but most people who take metformin every day aren’t healthy.

Grow your 3-day-old sprouts in darkness

This 2021 study examined light frequency effects on Chinese kale sprouts’ development of glucosinolates:

“We investigated sprout growth and secondary metabolite glucosinolates (GSs) accumulation under white or combined red-and-blue (RB) light sources. Most GSs in sprouts are stored in seeds, which is gradually degraded to provide nutrients for other metabolic functions.

Phenotype of 3-day-old Chinese kale sprouts grown with different photoperiods condition under white or RB light:

capital A was grown in darkness

Sprouts grown under dark conditions showed only elongation of hypocotyls [shoots]. Sprouts grew with shorter hypocotyls and wider cotyledons [first leaves] irrespective of whether a white or combined RB light source was used.

Growth indicators (including plant height, cotyledon length, fresh weight, and dry weight) under different photoperiodic treatments were measured on days 2, 3, 6, and 9. Consistent with the phenotype presented, plant height and cotyledon length responded rhythmically to illumination time.” “Effect of Photoperiod on Chinese Kale (Brassica alboglabra) Sprouts Under White or Combined Red and Blue Light”

Circadian rhythms rule. Accept and adjust.

Week 56 of Changing to a youthful phenotype with sprouts

1. Per Improving healthy compounds of broccoli sprouts and Broccoli sprouts’ immune effects, this week I added mustard sprouts and red cabbage sprouts to my twice-daily routine of eating 3-day-old microwaved broccoli sprouts.

At first, I started mustard and red cabbage seeds with the same 10.7 gram weight (one tablespoon) of seeds. They grew well such that after three days, mustard sprouts weighed an average 61.2 g, and red cabbage sprouts weighed 60.3 g average. Both of these were slightly less than broccoli sprouts’ 65.5 g average.

3-day-old mustard sprouts substantially mellowed out from mustard seeds’ effects. After microwaving mustard sprouts to ≤ 60°C (140°F) and letting them sit for five minutes, I still felt constant nose burn while eating them. 3-day-old red cabbage sprouts were milder than broccoli sprouts, so no difficulties.

The main problem with doing one tablespoon seed weights of all three Brassicaceae species consistently was that 61.2 + 60.3 + 65.5 = 187 g (6.6 ounces) twice a day was too much for me. I eat a lot of low-calorie fibrous food everyday to make my gut microbiota happy. An extra 4+ oz increase at the same time as twice-daily broccoli sprouts put my stomach over the top.

I changed to make equal contents of these three Brassicaceae species be the 10.7 g (one tablespoon) that I started sprouting twice a day.

2. I haven’t seen relevant mustard and red cabbage 3-day-old sprout studies, only 7+ day microgreen and mature plant studies. Evidence is limited in determining effects of cutting my estimated 52 mg of daily sulforaphane intake from broccoli sprouts by two-thirds starting this week.

A. I’ve eaten a clinically-relevant amount of sulforaphane every day for 4+ times longer than any clinical trial. I’ve experienced many positive effects described in studies, and look forward to further improvements.

Reducing sulforaphane intake from broccoli sprouts to 17 mg is still within boundaries of measurable effects. As an example, Upgrade your brain’s switchboard with broccoli sprouts found effects from a daily sulforaphane 17.3 mg (100 µmol) intake.

B. Mustard’s main glucosinolate, sinigrin, hydrolyzes to allyl isothiocyanate, and is in the same aliphatic group as broccoli’s glucoraphanin, which hydrolyzes to sulforaphane. An example of their similar effects was in a citation of Eat broccoli sprouts for DIM:

“Isothiocyanates are both inducers and substrates for Phase II enzymes as glutathione-S-transferases, and polymorphisms of these enzymes have a significant impact.”

Mustard’s myrosinase enzyme activities over and above broccoli myrosinase were highlighted in cited studies of Does sulforaphane reach the colon? Pretty sure that mustard sprouts’ myrosinase ≤ 60°C increases broccoli sprouts’ sulforaphane.

C. Red cabbage’s main glucosinolate is also glucoraphanin. Here’s a graphic from a 2010 study RED CABBAGE, A VEGETABLE RICH IN HEALTH-RELATED GLUCOSINOLATES which compared its glucoraphanin content with white cabbage:

red cabbage glucoraphanin vs white cabbage

The seeds I received were an “Agnostic” variety. In clarification correspondence with my supplier, I received a response “It means in this use ‘Generic’ or Variety not stated. Meaning it is just whatever variety of Red cabbage we bought and we don’t know the exact specifics.” 🙄

Red cabbage anthocyanins have a larger extent than broccoli anthocyanins, which was highlighted in Colorize your diet, Red cabbage pigments and the brain, and Measuring bioavailability. Figure 5 of Lab analyses of broccoli sprout compounds had analysis of three red cabbage cultivars’ 9-day-old sprouts. Glucosinolates are on top, hydrolysis products on the bottom. Glucoraphanin is red 4MSOB in A, and sulforaphane is red 4MSOB-ITC in C:

red cabbage 9-day-old sprouts

D. In summary, I don’t think I’ve significantly reduced broccoli sprouts’ effects by substituting two-thirds weight with two other Brassicaceae species. I haven’t noticed that growth characteristics / compounds interfered with each other.

Still looking for mustard and red cabbage 3-day-old sprout studies. My current Brassicaceae species composite is tasty, and doesn’t cause mustard nose burn.

3. This Brassicaceae species composite isn’t photogenic:


Red cabbage sprouts by themselves are pretty.


4. I still eat 3-day-old oat sprouts twice a day per Sprouting hulled oats. I don’t eat them with Brassicaceae species, but wait at least an hour later with Avena nuda oats in the morning, and AGE-less chicken vegetable soup in the evening.

Measuring bioavailability

This 2017 review challenged snapshot measurements of biological availability:

“There is a general belief that anthocyanins, flavanones, and other polyphenols are poorly bioavailable with only relatively small amounts of ingested dose entering systemic circulation in the form of metabolites. When lower molecular weight phenolic and aromatic ring-fission catabolites produced primarily by colonic microbiota are taken into account, it is evident that anthocyanins and flavanones are much more bioavailable than previously envisaged.

Although plasma pharmacokinetic measurements provide a snapshot of absorbed circulating metabolites, 0–24-h urinary excretion of both metabolites absorbed in the small intestine and catabolites of distal gastrointestinal (GI) origin that are products of bacterial processing provide a more quantitative reflection of polyphenol absorption. Overall 0–48-h urinary recovery of phenolic compounds – after baseline subtraction – was 43.9 ± 8.0 μmol, which is equivalent to 15% of ingested anthocyanins.


With orders of magnitude higher plasma/serum Cmax levels and significantly longer half-lives, evidence points toward lower molecular weight phenolic and aromatic catabolites being the primary bioavailable products of anthocyanin consumption. Gut-derived catabolites can often exert higher bioactivity than their precursor flavonoid structures.” “Anthocyanins and Flavanones Are More Bioavailable than Previously Perceived: A Review of Recent Evidence” (not freely available)

Much of this review’s anthocyanin section was dedicated to a coauthor’s 9-person study where they ate a huge amount of raspberries. Its flavanone section was similarly influenced by another coauthor’s human orange juice studies.

I’d like to see stronger evidence before reviewer statements become faits accomplis, elevated through citations to become indisputable facts. Its underlying point that studies could take more and varied measurements over extended periods seems amenable to evidence.

I arrived at this review through its citations in Colorize your diet and Red cabbage pigments and the brain.

Red cabbage pigments and the brain

This 2020 sheep study measured red cabbage anthocyanin concentrations:

“Study aim was to determine whether strongly bioactive hydrophilic red cabbage anthocyanins cross the blood-cerebrospinal fluid barrier (blood-CSF barrier) and whether there is a selectivity of this barrier towards these compounds.

The blood-CSF barrier, apart from the vascular blood-brain barrier, is the second important barrier. Despite very tight connections between endothelial cells of blood vessels of the choroid plexus, blood-CSF barrier allows selective passing of substances from blood to CSF, which is considered as a medium actively involved in transport of information to nerve cells.

Uncharged, lipophilic, and small-sized substances (≤ 600 Da) can cross the brain barriers without major obstacles thanks to diffusion. The rate of these substances’ penetration into brain tissue is directly proportional to their lipid solubility, and inversely proportional to particle size. Hydrophilic substances require special carriers.

The average percentage level of native anthocyanins over the whole experiment was almost 39.5%, while their metabolites constituted just over 60.5%. However, the proportion of native forms vs. metabolites did not develop identically:

  1. Early term (0.5-4 hrs) was distinguished by native derivatives (> 76%).
  2. Second period (4.5 h) had a similar contribution of native anthocyanins (49.85%) and their metabolites (50.15%).
  3. Third interval (5.0-10 h) more than 87% of anthocyanins were metabolites.

For comparison, a human experiment showed only one period with maximum blood plasma anthocyanins concentration (2 h) after red cabbage consumption.

Only one of 17 native anthocyanins found in blood plasma was detected in CSF. Eleven of 17 metabolites found in blood were identified in CSF.

sheep csf cyanins

Due to their hydrophilic nature and considerable size (≥ 611 Da), there seems to be no possibility to use diffusion for permeation of red cabbage anthocyanins through the blood-CSF barrier. These pigments may pass through this barrier only by the use of special carriers. Other mechanisms of anthocyanins permeation through blood-CSF barrier cannot be eliminated.

Two maximal values of total anthocyanins concentration appeared in both blood and CSF. When the pool of cyanidin compounds available in blood became depleted, the decline of total anthocyanin concentration in CSF was also noted.

Nonacylated cyanidin derivatives penetrated the blood-CSF barrier, but acylated cyanidin derivatives did not. A significantly higher proportion of cyanidin sulfate forms in CSF (31%) compared to blood plasma (9%).

Further targeted studies are needed to determine which paths of permeation via blood-CSF barrier are actually responsible for anthocyanins passing, as well as what mechanisms are present during these processes. In addition, it is worth remembering that low molecular weight compounds formed mainly by colonic microbiota are very important metabolites of anthocyanins, and could be relevant in the context of permeation through brain barriers.” “The Blood–Cerebrospinal Fluid Barrier Is Selective for Red Cabbage Anthocyanins and Their Metabolites” (not freely available)

Don’t understand why this study hasn’t been cited even once. These researchers’ methods could be performed with broccoli and other red cabbage compounds.