Friday, September 28, 2007

Cysteine may reduce alcohol cancer risk

Cysteine gum may reduce tobacco, alcohol cancer risk

So what's a person to do if they want a tipple? l-cysteine might be the answer.

"...The gum, called XyliCyst, is to be introduced by Finnish company Biohit Oyj, which holds the patents to the preparations to use I-cysteine to eliminate the carcinogen acetaldehyde after drinking or smoking...I-cysteine has been understood for many years to have the ability to bind to acetaldehyde, or ethanal, a toxic chemical compound that forms in saliva, especially with alcohol drinking and tobacco smoking...According to Finnish researchers Professors Mikko Salaspuro and Martti Marvola, epidemiological statistics indicating that 80 per cent of cancers of the mouth, pharynx and oesophagus are linked to smoking and drinking could be explained by increased exposure to acetaldehyde in the upper digestive tract..."

If you understand Finnish you can buy the gum here. Being the monoglot that I am, I have to wonder about l-cysteine supplements rather than gum.

Info on l-cysteine here, with this interesting nugget "Cysteine-supplemented mice and guinea pigs have enjoyed significantly extended life spans, and other animals, challenged with various toxins, have, when pre-supplemented with cysteine, survived considerably longer than non-supplemented controls. In one of these studies, 90% of control rats given large doses of acetaldehyde died. But other rats first given a combination of vitamins C and B, along with cysteine, and then exposed to the same dose of acetaldehyde, all survived. Cysteine's protective mechanisms could relate to its own antioxidant properties, its promotion of glutathione (a major antioxidant) or even, it has been hypothesized, to some ability to participate in DNA repair.""

What about dosage? "The usual supplemental dosage of L-cysteine is 500 milligrams to 1.5 grams daily. Those who supplement with L-cysteine should drink at least six to eight glasses of water daily in order to prevent cystine renal stones. Some studies indicate that an intake of 3 to 5 grams daily of vitamin C may prevent cystine stones. However, high-dose vitamin C itself may contribute to renal stones in some (see Vitamin C).""...Another delivery form of L-cysteine is N-acetylcysteine (see N-Acetylcysteine)."

LifeExtension lists their treatments for dealing with alcohol here. They actually sell an anti-alcohol antioxidant supplement. And cysteine is one of the ingredients.

One of the reasons you probably don't want to take this at high doses - might act as a neurotoxin.

"DogVitals dog supplement - helping dogs live a younger, healthier life

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