By Dr. Roger Kendall
If you’ve spent any time in front of the TV lately, you’ve probably noticed a significant increase in the number of infomercials.
Do you want a better night’s sleep? There’s a miracle mattress just for you. Do you want to cook food faster? Get one of the countless pressure cookers being sold on television. Has life zapped the energy out of you? Try one of the many nutrient supplements highlighted in infomercials.
A large segment of the American population says the inability to perform at their mental and physical peak is their number one health concern. This is especially true for older Americans that lament a substantial decline in energy. Tens of millions of Americans take at least one or more nutritional supplements to address a health issue. For optimizing mental and physical performance, a dietary supplement called Dimethylglycine (DMG) is gaining popularity among Americans seeking an increase in mental and physical performance.
The question is whether DMG can support or increase the production of energy levels in the body. As a vital nutrient supporting metabolic reactions, research demonstrates DMG can aid in the reduction of fatigue and improve endurance.
What is DMG?
As a substance naturally found in plant and animal cells, DMG is a derivative of the amino acid glycine. Your body uses it to produce essential proteins, and it can mimic the health impact of antioxidants. Considered a health supplement, DMG can provide its users with benefits such as improving the behavior of children within the autism spectrum. Many parents have reported that by taking DMG as a dietary supplement, their children have enjoyed more focused attention spans. Dr. Bernard Rimland at the Autism Research Institute, based on favorable reports from parents, linked DMG to better communication skills, as well as improved social skills.
Professional athletes and recreational enthusiasts have also been supplementing with DMG for years to optimize performance. As the founder of FoodScience Corporation, Dom Orlandi discovered DMG could improve physical endurance in 1968. Orlandi and his team of researchers fed DMG to a group of thoroughbred horses that typically ran out of steam heading down the home stretch of races. Orlandi found that the DMG gave his horse the extra boost it needed to finish the end of the strong. A later study, done by Dr. Stephen Levine, DVM showed that DMG could reduce lactic acid build up in equine.
The dietary supplement became mainstream in and a center of focus during the 1970s. Dr. Jerry Meduski at UCLA concluded DMG supports the metabolism during periods of acute stress. Dr. Meduski conducted the study on a group of rats, and the rats given DMG handled lower oxygen levels much better than the control group.
Potential Health Benefits of DMG
The scientific focus on the health benefits of DMG has centered on the supplement’s ability to ramp up individual energy levels. Enhanced endurance derived from better utilization of limited oxygen supplies and its ability to reduce lactic acid build-up sits at the heart of the DMG debate. However, practitioners have discovered additional health benefits since Dr. Meduski linked DMG to an increase of metabolic intermediates, which are key physiological building blocks for producing important hormones, vitamins and nucleic acids such as DNA.
Lately, DMG has received more scrutiny because of the number of stressors that affect our mental and physical well-being. Studies conducted by Dr. Meduski and other notable scientists have presented evidence that DMG helps the mind and body adapt to large-scale changes in mental, physical, emotional and environmental stressors. Without the replenishment of stress hormones, the body can become fatigued. This is particularly true for athletes competing in high-stakes events.
In a study done by Dr. Mitchell Pries, MD, he reported that DMG helps the body’s cardiovascular system and reduces the number of risks factors, including normalizing cholesterol and triglyceride levels. His study, linking DMG to improved heart health involved studying the hearts of older test subjects that suffered from heart conditions.
Being an intermediate that supports mitochondrial function, DMG also encourages the production of creatine and phosphocreatine, both of which are essential in generating energy for the brain, which slows the mental fatigue process.
Although scientists want to perform more research on DMG’s impact on the immune system, early tests indicate the nutrient boosts resistance to the onset of viral, fungal and bacterial diseases. One of the reasons is DMG supports methylation, which is a metabolic process that transfers methyl groups from one substance to another. Methyl groups consist of one carbon atom and three hydrogen atoms that are integral in ensuring optimal cellular function.
The Body’s Delicate Balancing Act
Our bodies constantly adapt and adjust to walking the ultimate physical high wire act. DMG, an adaptogen, is produced naturally by the body to deliver maximum physiological balance and helps the body respond favorably to the myriad stressors facing it every day. More tests need to be conducted to firmly establish a link between DMG and the body’s balancing act, but early results indicate the link is real.