What are glyco-nutrients? The bio-tech companies which manufacture these products claim they are the sugars now “missing” from our highly processed modern diets, and that these sugars are essential for optimum health. They say that these glyco – “nutrients” are responsible for promoting cell communication – and that when they are re-introduced to our diets amazing things may happen with our health.
But sceptics believe that glyco-nutrients are just expensive sugar pills with no real benefit to health. Here is some of the information I discovered that you may find interesting, all gleaned from a simple internet trawl – (type glyco-nutrients+controversy” into your Google search bar for an idea of how many sites there are about this subject!):
Glyco-nutrients are big business – according to Wikipedia, billions of dollars are earned annually in the sale of these products. They are very expensive to buy – I was told by a friend that a regime of Mannatech’s glyco-nutrient supplements can easily set you back a good thousand (or more) rand per month. What I haven’t been able to discover is what percentage of that sum is paid to the salesperson(s) marketing the product, and whether the method used to market Mannatech’s glyco-nutrients (Multi Level Marketing / MLM) makes the product so expensive or whether it is just a pricey supplement, like so many of them on the market today. (Sometimes I think these types of products must have been hand-picked at a full moon by vestal virgins from Outer Mongolia to be so expensive – if you follow my drift…)
Research into efficacy of the glyco-nutrients which are currently on the market has not been published in a medical journal for peer review. (I would be very happy to publish any peer-reviewed research should anyone care to send it on – I didn’t find anything on the web) In defence of glyco-nutrients however, this is true for many health supplements widely available today.
One company in particular has regularly been in the spotlight worldwide for apparent false claims and allegedly fake information that it’s “associates” have previously used to sell its products. The company in question has been taken to task (in the USA) for not taking adequate steps to ensure that it’s agents/associates/salespeople (who are independent contractors) market it’s products responsibly. (www.mlmwatch.org/04C/Mannatech/Mannatech00.html)
A few independent researchers have stated that glyco-nutrients in their present form (as capsules, powders and pills) have no significant benefits. Click on the following link should you be interested to read the most non-judgemental and informative article I could find about glyco-nutrients so far, written by a medical doctor. Just scroll down to the glyco-nutrients header on the site and click on it to read the information: www.raysahelian.com
There are websites up and running which make claims regarding the efficacy of glyco-nutrients – citing glyco-nutrients as treatment for life-threatening ailments such as cancer, tumours, diseases such as diabetes, Chrohn’s disease, and as treatment for disorders such as autism, I quote: “There is enormous potential for restoring brain function in autistic children and adults through the use of glyco-nutrients” (see: www.glyconutrientsreference.com) – and even being able to assist in fertility problems. These claims are not backed by any scientific research and have been a source of false hope for many people. (www.mlmwatch.org/04C/Mannatech/sham.html) and also www.cdac.com (click on the Down’s Syndrome Treatment header.)
There have been reports of research by Nobel prize winning scientists into a field called “glyco-biology”. This research exists and is very interesting, however those Nobel winning scientists allegedly have orders against a particular glyco-nutrient company for using this research to promote their products – the research itself apparently has nothing to do with glyco-nutrients per se, and it would seem that those scientists mentioned have not given their permission for their research to be used in such a fashion. (http://wikipedia.org/wiki/Mannatech#cite_note-7)
I would be happy to be corrected, but as I understand it, according to the South African Medical Scope of Practice, no-one other than a registered medical practitioner, may prescribe / recommend any substance to treat another individual.
While the pro’s and con’s of this law are a separate issue, it would seem that, (for the time-being anyway), using multi-level marketing to sell health products may in fact be illegal in South Africa. (Time to lobby the health ministry? A future article about these laws coming up – keep an eye on this web-page!)
You may also find it interesting to note that I am still waiting for the answers to your questions posed (see previous post!) to Chris Simons of Mannatech SA…I wonder if we’ll get a reply any time soon?
Also check the following links for further information:
I thought I’d share something very special with you – a set of cards called The Bird Cards, which I was introduced to by my dear friend Jane Toerien, who helped create them. These cards with their inspiring and profound and very powerful messages have had an impact on my life and all those who have had the priviledge of being in contact with them. As Jane will tell you, everyone has a “Bird Story” – I learned a new way of looking at the World and it’s marvels with these messages from the bird kingdom.
Now Jane and Shelly Kibel, Chi-Gung teacher, will be presenting a workshop on the 24th of January at The Health Path in Hout Bay.
The workshop will focus on “Opening Your Potential – a Journey of Self Discovery with the Bird Cards”. Jane has just returned from Holland where she presented a similar workshop with great success. Go to: www.birdcards.net and contact her via her site.