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Nucleotides - the forgotten base of the micronutrient pyramid

What are nucleotides, anyway? Why are they so fundamentally important to your cells and potentially to you in your therapy? Find out more in this article.

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Nucleotides - the forgotten base of the micronutrient pyramid

Nucleotides are still in the shadows behind micronutrients and even more so macronutrients - unfortunately. The established idea of micronutrient therapy starts exactly there: with the micronutrients. This type of therapy is based on the assumption that micronutrients form the lowest level and thus the basis for all other metabolic processes and physiological control circuits. We'll go out on a limb and say that's a misconception. Why?

The idea of micronutrient therapy sounds logical: the human body is not a machine, but a biological system with a desire for balance. The assumption is that the body can independently compensate for and correct imbalances, deficits and damage, and initiate growth. This would mean: If one provides such a system with everything it needs and at the same time keeps disturbing factors away as far as possible, it will independently assume a healthy, well-regulated and functional state.

From this theory can be deduced what would be necessary: In addition to macronutrients (proteins, carbohydrates, fats), micronutrients are necessary for the known nutrients to be produced, processed, used and broken down in the first place. There is one thing people tend to forget that gives us great cause for concern. If we want to use micronutrients properly and effectively, we need other substances. We come into contact here with a level of organization that goes even deeper - the information level.

Every process in the organism, every material component, cells, tissues, organs - everything is based on information. This level of information is held in your DNA. It contains our genetic information, what your body needs to produce proteins, enzymes and much more. Only when there is balance in the realization of information on this level, we can take the next step on all other levels of life.

The ability to successfully pass on, activate and regulate DNA is the cornerstone of our health. However, this is exactly what most micronutrient therapies do not take into account. In this article, we'll tell you about the basic functions of nucleotides, the building blocks of DNA, and why they belong at the base of every micronutrient pyramid.

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Table of Contents

• What are nucleotides?
• The functions of nucleotides in the body
• Are nucleotides essential?
• Nucleotides in food
• Nucleotides in capsules - why and when?
• The micronutrient pyramid - our suggestion

What are nucleotides?

Nucleotides are neither vitamins nor minerals nor proteins. They are composed of several from several components that form a unit.

Each nucleotide contains a kind of sugar to which a base is attached. This base is not to be confused with the word basic, which describes the pH value of a substance. Here, "base" is simply a term for a structure. The sugar still has one (or more) phosphate groups attached to it. Then the nucleotide is complete.

There are 5 different types of bases. They determine which nucleotide is involved. The names are adenine, thymine, guanine, cytosine and uracil. (Illustration of nucleotide structure with labeling of components).
Nucleotides have the great property that they can form a long chain by binding to each other. This happens, for example, in the cell nucleus, where nucleotides are particularly important as building blocks of DNA. DNA contains all the information for the formation of proteins, the functioning of the metabolism and much more. Each individual cell contains a copy of the information in the form of DNA.

With the structure explained, we can now delve deeper into the world of nucleotides. "Nucleotides as the building blocks of DNA" is by no means all there is to know about their function.

Welche Funktionen haben Nukleotide?

Hardly any substance is as diverse as this one. Nucleotides take part in almost all metabolic reactions, are involved in cell division and protein synthesis, and are relevant for the signal processing of a cell. Without nucleotides, practically nothing works.

Cell division
Cell division is probably the best-known process in which nucleotides are relevant. If a cell wants to divide, the entire genome, i.e. the entire DNA, must first be duplicated. Since DNA is made up of nucleotides, we need a whole lot of nucleotides for this process, about 6 billion nucleotides to be exact. Every day, about 220 billion cells are exchanged, which is 2.5 million cells per second! We say exchanged, by the way, because new cells are usually created and old ones are broken down. This is how the balance of the cells is maintained.
Protein synthesis
Nucleotides are relevant not only for cell division, but also for growth and protein synthesis. All information about the structure of proteins and enzymes is encoded on the DNA. However, DNA cannot easily leave the cell nucleus, only to serve as a blueprint in the cell during protein biosynthesis. This would not really be possible due to its size and would also be too dangerous as the DNA could be attacked. To protect the DNA and regulate protein synthesis, a copy is made of part of the DNA - this is the RNA. This small copy can then move out of the nucleus and to the site of protein synthesis. Just like DNA, RNA is made up of nucleotides. This is also true for the site of protein synthesis, the ribosome.
Nucleotides are therefore essential for functioning protein formation and the associated good cell growth. Major deficiencies may well result in slower protein synthesis. Nucleotides are important in the cell cycle, but this is by no means the only relevant aspect.

A connection with the metabolism sounds exaggerated at first. However, let's take a closer look: Almost all metabolic reactions require energy to be carried out. This energy is largely produced in the mitochondria, our energy power plants. In this process, nutrients are broken down in such a way that the resulting energy is transferred to a molecule you've probably heard of. ATP, the universal energy carrier of our cells is formed, whereby the energy of the nutrient degradation is stored in this energy carrier. When we now need energy, for example in metabolism, ATP is split and energy is released so that the reaction can take place.
ATP stands for adenosine triphosphate and is? Exactly, a nucleotide. Adenosine stands for the sugar together with the base adenine and triphosphate means that 3 phosphate groups are attached. (Structure of ATP, with breakdown) Nucleotides are also needed for signal transmission to a cell.

So you see: nucleotides are in high demand. What is the situation regarding availability?

Are nucleotides essential?

This question can be answered quickly: No. Nucleotides are not essential, which means that the body can theoretically produce them itself. As always, synthesis requires nutrients, energy and electrons. More precisely:
• Some essential nutrients, especially the bioactive form of vitamins B9 and B12
• Energy in the form of 8-12 molecules of ATP (the energy carrier).
• Some electrons (these are also involved in reactions to protect against oxidation).

To produce a nucleotide, the cell must invest substances, substances that may not be available at the moment. During times of greater physical exertion, such as growth, muscle building, fighting disease, and more, the need for nucleotides may increase - but the availability of raw materials decreases due to the need elsewhere. In short, we have a problem.

A lack of substances for nucleotide production results in reduced nucleotide supply, which in turn leads to problems in cell growth and division and - almost worse - to reduced ATP production and thus a lack of energy. Less ATP leads to less synthesis of products, including nucleotides. Here the circle closes and we recognize the problem of the classical micronutrient therapy. If the nucleotides are missing, it is of no use to have enough vitamins in stock.

If the production of nucleotides proves to be costly and the body is increasingly in need of nucleotides in times of greater exertion - but at the same time there is less energy and vitamins available - there is really only one thing we can do: Supply nucleotides.

Nucleotides in food

Nucleotides are in short supply. The logical next step would be a sufficient supply through food - as far as this is possible. The fact is, foods have a certain proportion of nucleotides, which unfortunately varies greatly.

A glance at the list[1] shows: With our current diet, the majority of nucleotides will be poorly or not at all covered by food. Internal organs have not been a typical food for a long time and as a vegetarian or vegan, the supply of nucleotides is equally difficult.
In addition, some of the nutrients are lost when meat and vegetables are cooked, and nucleotides ingested through food must first be obtained through complicated processes - not exactly quick and easy.

We believe that it is possible to cover nucleotide requirements with food, especially in demanding phases of life, but we do not think it makes sense to do so. This is primarily due to the poor intake of food-bound nucleotides and the associated extremely high consumption of meat to reach the necessary quantities. So why not make it easier for yourself and skip a few steps?

Nucleotides in capsules - why and how?

A relatively simple method of supplying nucleotides is via food supplements, i.e. in capsule or powder form. Here, barriers to normal nucleotide uptake are bypassed. The complicated cleavage process to obtain nucleotides is skipped. Instead, free nucleotides are used to increase uptake. In addition, the diet can be based on other factors besides nucleotide content. The focus can be on a healthy, balanced diet rich in micronutrients - instead of focusing on nucleotides.

In the context of supplementation, there is the question of the form of administration, i.e., which nucleotides should be taken and how is absorption best ensured, so are other factors useful?

There are 4 different DNA nucleotides with the four different bases. Furthermore, there are nucleotides of protein synthesis (RNA nucleotides), which differ from DNA nucleotides in the sugar used, as well as in two bases. There are five of them - with the bases adenine, uracil, guanine, cytosine and inosine. It makes more sense to focus on RNA nucleotides, because they can be easily converted into DNA nucleotides and also bring the fifth base inosine, which occurs in protein synthesis.

So we conclude: if supplementation, then RNA nucleotides. Another advantage: they are available vegan, for example as an extract from yeast.

Let's turn to the second question: are there other factors that make sense in the context of free nucleotide uptake and utilization?
We already have extensive knowledge regarding micronutrients in cell division and growth. Zinc in particular is crucial here.

Zinc has been found to be an important component of various metabolic enzymes. For example, an enzyme for the synthesis of nucleotides is zinc-dependent. Studies suggest a direct influence of zinc on DNA synthesis. Furthermore, growth signaling pathways are also dependent on zinc concentration[2].

Other factors in cell division and nucleotide metabolism are B vitamins such as biotin, vitamins B6 and B12, riboflavin and niacin. This is mainly due to their involvement in cell growth processes. Biotin, for example, is an important co-factor and regulator of many metabolic enzymes and thus essential for energy production and anabolic reactions. Furthermore, it is evident that biotin is also relevant in the gene regulation of enzymes[3]. Cell division and growth are closely linked. In the regulation of the cell cycle, functioning growth is a prerequisite for cell division. If growth is already disturbed, division does not occur.

Supplying nucleotides while ensuring co-factors for growth and nucleotide metabolism are critical for healthy cells - and thus for proper micronutrient therapy.

The micronutrient pyramid - our suggestion

Integrative physicians and alternative practitioners often rely on micronutrient therapy for prevention. However, the right basis is crucial for successful implementation. Unfortunately, the classical micronutrient therapy pays little attention to this.

MITO trains therapists in micronutrient therapy based on the Causa Logica principle to facilitate successful implementation. In addition, our micronutrient pyramid provides an easy-to-use plan - from the most basic building blocks to more complex levels of organization.

Benefits for you and your therapist include:
• Adaptation to individual needs • A common thread, structure and security • A plan based on current research

It is always started with the most elementary, simplest building blocks. These clearly include vitamins, minerals, amino acids and fats. The next step is to look at the organization, i.e. the DNA and how it is controlled. Here, among other things, nucleotides come into play - if they are not already part of it. The third level is somewhat more complex: individual cell organelles and cells are considered. Mitochondria are one example. One level further, we focus on organs, i.e. everything to do with the liver, kidneys, heart and so on. The highest level is the regulation of all these processes so that the body can act harmoniously. So we don't rely on a classic pyramid, but rather on a step model, where you start at the step where you have problems (for example, according to lab values).

For us, nucleotides are to be classified on one of the lowest two levels, since nucleotides are incredibly important, especially when considering DNA. Such a level model beats the pyramid for us, because through different categories within the levels we can react more individually to the person and cover many more health aspects.

Together with our therapists, doctors and partner laboratories, you can tackle your health and work your way from the basics to the higher organization - even before an illness, i.e. on a preventive level.


[1]: (Grafik)

[2]: Ruth S. MacDonald, The Role of Zinc in Growth and Cell Proliferation, The Journal of Nutrition, Volume 130, Issue 5, May 2000, Pages 1500S–1508S,

[3]: Dakshinamurti K. (2005). Biotin--a regulator of gene expression. The Journal of nutritional biochemistry, 16(7), 419–423.