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Glossary C-CZ



A normally harmless microscopic yeast that lives within the human gastrointestinal tract. It can overgrow and cause fatigue, depression, joint pain, headaches, and recurrent infections. It can infect the mouth or the skin or the intestines or the vagina.



CARBOHYDRATES are one of the three main nutrients in food. Carbohydrates (carbs) are the body's major source of energy. There are two main types of carbohydrates – sugars (like the kinds in milk, fruit, table sugar, and candy) and starches, which are found in grains, breads, crackers, and pasta. The body breaks down carbs into the sugar glucose which the body's cells need. Glucose is absorbed into the bloodstream, which makes the sugar level in the blood go up. As the sugar level rises in the body, the pancreas releases a hormone called insulin. Insulin is needed to move glucose from the blood into the cells, where it can be used as a source of energy.



The smallest structural unit of an organism that is capable of independent functioning, consisting of one or more nuclei, cytoplasm, and various organelles, all surrounded by a semipermeable cell membrane. The primary unit of physical life, whose integral structure and optimal status is crucial for the healthy functioning of the human body.



A B-complex vitamin that is a constituent of lecithin; essential in the metabolism of fat. It protects against damage to cells by oxidation. People taking niacin or nicotinic acid for treatment of high-serum cholesterol and triglyerides need lecithin or choline supplements because nicotinic acid and nicotinomide (vitamin B-3) can reduce normal amounts of choline and lecithin available for basic body needs.



Promotes glucose metabolism. Helps insulin regulate blood sugar. Decreases insulin requirements and improves glucose tolerance of some people with adult-onset diabetes.



Blood is made up of different parts, such as red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. Red blood cells  carry oxygen to the rest of your body. White blood cells are the warriors of the blood, defending your body against germs that try to make you sick. And platelets stick together to form a plug to stop bleeding. Doctors sometimes do blood tests to count how many of each type of blood cell you have.



Constipation refers to a change in bowel habits characterized by a decrease in frequency or hard, dry stools. Bowel emptying may be incomplete.



The principal steroid hormone produced by the adrenal cortex. It regulates carbohydrate metabolism and the immune system and maintains blood pressure. When natural or synthetic cortisol is used as a pharmaceutical, it is known as hydrocortisone. Imbalances are associated with fatigue, depression, obesity, and immune dysfunction.


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