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Larry Newman is the Chief Operating Officer, Technical and Regulatory Affairs of Kirkman Group, Inc. (Kirkman). Contact Kirkman at 1-800-245-8282; 6400 Rosewood St., Lake Oswego, OR.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Super Nu-Thera® is Still #1

By Larry Newman

For more than 40 years, Super Nu-Thera® has been the number one choice of supplementation for individuals with certain sensitivities and dietary requirements.
It’s unique formulation has offered thousands of individuals the nutritional support required to meet their special health concerns.

The History of Super Nu-Thera®
Super Nu-Thera®, a multiple vitamin/mineral supplement containing high levels of B-6 and also magnesium, has been Kirkman’s most popular dietary supplement since its formulation in 1967. The original product was formulated by Kirkman® at the urgent request of a renowned researcher, the late Dr. Bernard Rimland who was investigating a special formulation of a nutritional supplement for use in supporting certain childhood health concerns of special needs and sensitive individuals. It was Dr. Rimland’s belief that a poor nutritional profile could have been a contributing factor to the poor health issues of these individuals.

These issues included:
  • vision abnormality
  • unhealthy skin conditions
  • extreme tiredness or lack of energy
  • lethargy
  • behavioral disturbances
  • failure to thrive
  • frequent illness due to poor immune support
  • learning issues
  • social inadequacies
Dr. Rimland found that Super Nu-Thera® supplementation did in fact help many of the individuals that were given the supplement. Its popularity flourished as a result of his reports, many of which are published on the website which he founded.

Dr. Rimland continued to upgrade and request new versions of Super Nu-Thera® as the science emerged. In fact, twenty-two clinical studies on vitamin B-6 (including many with magnesium), have been done, including thirteen double-blind placebo-controlled trials. Twenty-one of the twenty-two studies yielded positive results. In a recent summary of various drugs and dietary supplements used to support special needs and sensitive individuals, vitamin B-6/magnesium supplements scored well, with improvements reported in 49% of those surveyed. (Contact Kirkman’s customer service department for information regarding obtaining the aforementioned clinical study reports and to the survey on supporting products.)

Why Are B-6/Magnesium Supplements Effective
Vitamin B-6 is involved in more bodily functions than any other single vitamin. It affects both physical and mental health and is required for normal brain function, and many important enzyme activations. Vitamin B-6 plays a role in immunity and also controls the formation of homocysteine, a toxic chemical that attacks heart muscle and allows the deposition of cholesterol in arteries around the heart. Deficiencies can manifest themselves with anemia, convulsions, headaches, fatigue, nausea or vomiting. B-6 is also a dominating factor in the biochemical process of methylation.

Magnesium is involved in more biochemical functions than any other mineral in the body. Over 300 metabolic reactions involve this important nutrient so it is prudent to ensure your daily intake is sufficient. Magnesium is also extremely important in regulating heart rhythms. The recommended daily value for magnesium is 400 mg. daily and most dietary surveys indicate that most individuals only get 220-320 mg. per day, a sub-optimal level. It is important, however, not to over consume magnesium, since excess amounts of this mineral can exhibit a laxative effect.

Magnesium is also a key player in the methylation process. It is involved in the following steps:
  • activates phosphates and energy transfer enzymes
  • activates the conversion of methionine to SAM (S-adenosylmethionine)
  • assembles glutathione from its three component amino acids: cysteine, glycine and glutamic acid
Considering these combined functions of vitamin B-6 and magnesium, their importance can not be underestimated. The significance of Dr. Rimland’s work with positive outcomes certainly support this.

The P-5-P (Pyridoxal-5-phosphate) Factor
The standard form of vitamin B-6 found in nutritional supplements and the form used in Dr. Rimland’s original forms of Super Nu-Thera® is pyridoxine hydrochloride. When ingested, pyridoxine hydrochloride must be metabolized into pyridoxal-5-phosphate (P-5-P) to be active for coenzyme use as vitamin B-6 in the body. As science progressed after the original introduction of Super Nu-Thera®, it was found that some sensitive individuals had a pathway deficiency and could not properly convert pyridoxine hydrochloride to P-5-P. Dr. Rimland recognized that these individuals would benefit from a form of Super Nu-Thera® that contained either all or part of the vitamin B-6 in the form of P-5-P. Kirkman® formulated several forms of Super Nu-Thera® which do incorporate P-5-P into the formulation.

P-5-P is a more potent form of vitamin B-6. It is generally considered to be equivalent to about 5 times the amount of pyridoxine hydrochloride. For that reason, potencies of P-5-P in Super Nu-Thera® formulations are lower than those utilizing pyridoxine hydrochloride.

Which form of vitamin B-6 works best in an individual has to be determined by trial and error. Kirkman® recommends starting out with a form of Super Nu-Thera® that contains pyridoxine hydrochloride, and if desired results are not obtained, then switch to a P-5-P form. Many physicians believe the P-5-P form is superior so they reverse that trial and error process. The biochemistry of some individuals will not tolerate a high dose or for that matter, any P-5-P, which may cause extreme hyperactivity for them. Those individuals experiencing that phenomenon must stay with the pyridoxine hydrochloride form or a Super Nu-Thera® product containing a combination of the two. Kirkman® has a form of Super Nu-Thera® for just about any individual’s needs. Your physician or our customer service personnel can help select the form that fits your requirements best.

Why Are There So Many Different Forms of Super Nu-Thera®?
There are many reasons which have evolved over the years. First, some individuals prefer caplets, liquids, powders or capsules, so Kirkman® carries all four dosage forms. Some children need flavored versions for compliance reasons, while others require hypoallergenic versions because of extreme sensitivities to flavors or sweeteners. Kirkman® provides both. Furthermore, the liquid form of Super Nu-Thera® comes in several different flavors. The P-5-P factor (described in the section above) contributed to other versions.

Some individuals take cod liver oil as their main source of vitamins A and D. Many of those individuals do not want additional vitamins A and D in their Super Nu-Thera® and as a result, Kirkman® offers several formulations without vitamins A or D.

One Size Does Not Fit All
Dr. Rimland’s surveys indicate that nearly ½ of individuals respond positively to Super Nu-Thera®. Those individuals who do not respond to high vitamin B-6 and magnesium support may want to try high dose multi-vitamin/mineral combinations which have moderate or lower amounts of nutrients including lower, more moderate vitamin B-6 and magnesium levels. For those individuals, Kirkman® offers Spectrum Complete™ and Thera Response. Thera Response was formulated by Dr. Jon Pangborn in conjunction with a large group of physicians specializing in special needs of sensitive patients. It is the science based formulation of choice when moderate levels of B-6, magnesium and other nutrients are desired.

Try the Proven Supplement
There are many fine nutritional supplement products available to special needs and sensitive individuals. Super Nu-Thera® is the proven leader with success and positive results.

Kirkman® suggests you try the Super Nu-Thera® challenge. As Dr. Rimland suggested, take the product for 30 days and observe the results. You could be very surprised and impressed with the positive outcomes. Thousands of loyal and happy customers of Kirkman® can attest to that.