Did you know that keeping your gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT) level below 51 U/L in men or 34 U/L in women, reduces risk of premature death by up to 50%?
GGT is called an acute phase protein. It is made in the liver, and is a sensitive marker of inflammation throughout the body.
What causes a chronically high GGT or inflammation? Common causes include:
- Too much alcohol intake. Consuming more than 7 servings of alcohol weekly is the single largest contributor to elevated GGT.
- low fiber, low omega-3’s, low intake of antioxidants in the diet, and a high intake of pro-oxidants. Pro-oxidants come from red meat, processed meat, and other processed foods. Pro-oxidants generate free radicals in the body which leads to cell damage and activation of the immune response leading to inflammation.
- abdominal fat which activates the immune response.
- Insufficient sleep, chronic stress, anxiety, depression, and loneliness, all trigger the sympathetic nervous system. An activated sympathetic nervous system – the “fight or flight response” – elevates cortisol levels, which in turn leads to inflammation throughout the body.
The result of chronic inflammation is referred to as “inflammaging.” Inflammation and aging go hand in hand. One example of the specific harm from inflammation is heart disease. Inflammation results in dysfunction of the endothelium (the artery wall). Endothelial dysfunction results in migration of cholesterol and inflammatory cells into the arterial wall, leading to plaque build-up, aka atherosclerosis and subsequent heart attack and stroke.
Despite the serious health risk of a high GGT, nearly 1 in 5 adults (18.6% of men; 19.2% of women) have an elevated GGT level.
But keeping GGT level in the optimal range, minimizing inflammation, sounds like a lot to ask. Inflammation is caused by many aspects of the Western Lifestyle, including lack of sleep, chronic stress, loneliness, sedentary lifestyle and unhealthy diet.
Is there a way to keep GGT in the optimal range in the modern world?
There most certainly is! in this course, Dr. Cohen, a primary care doctor in San Francisco, shares with you effective strategies for keeping your GGT at goal.
The course begins with an introduction to Biometrics. Dr. Cohen explains how our food and living environment has made it increasingly difficult to maintain psychological health, eat healthfully and be physically active. He proposes a shift back to connecting with others, establishing balance between work and personal life, preparing our own food, from fresh ingredients we buy, and a shift toward a more active lifestyle including less sitting, more aerobic and resistance exercise. Next, he’ll share with you the medical research that shows the benefits of keeping your GGT in the optimal range. You’ll learn about choice architecture for avoiding bad choices. Finally, you’ll hear the answers to frequently asked questions, followed by a summary of the information presented.