PHYSICAL EXERCISE AND FITNESS: BODYBUILDING AND BODYBUILDERS : MEDICAL CONDITIONS: EATING DISORDERS : MEDICAL CONDITIONS: GENETIC DISORDERS : FOOD DRINK NUTRITION DIET: DIET: HIGH PROTEIN DIET : COUNTRIES: AUSTRALIA : FATALITIES: Australian Bodybuilder with Rare Disorder Dies Eating High-Protein Diet

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PHYSICAL EXERCISE AND FITNESS: BODYBUILDING AND BODYBUILDERS : MEDICAL CONDITIONS: EATING DISORDERS : MEDICAL CONDITIONS: GENETIC DISORDERS : FOOD DRINK NUTRITION DIET: DIET: HIGH PROTEIN DIET : COUNTRIES: AUSTRALIA : FATALITIES: Australian Bodybuilder with Rare Disorder Dies Eating High-Protein Diet

David P. Dillard
Administrator




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PHYSICAL EXERCISE AND FITNESS: BODYBUILDING AND BODYBUILDERS :

MEDICAL CONDITIONS: EATING DISORDERS :

MEDICAL CONDITIONS: GENETIC DISORDERS :

FOOD DRINK NUTRITION DIET: DIET: HIGH PROTEIN DIET :

COUNTRIES: AUSTRALIA :

FATALITIES:

Australian Bodybuilder with Rare Disorder Dies Eating High-Protein Diet

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Australian Bodybuilder with Rare Disorder Dies Eating High-Protein Diet

By Susan Scutti

CNN

Updated 3:26 PM ET, Tuesdat August 15, 2017

http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/15/health/ 
australian-body-builder-death-protein-shakes/index.html

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A shorter URL for the above link:

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http://tinyurl.com/y849qoy7

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Bodybuilder Meegan Hefford, 25, died in June from a rare genetic disorder
that prevented her body from properly metabolizing her high-protein diet.

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(CNN)Meegan Hefford, a 25-year-old bodybuilder, was found unconscious on
June 19 in her Mandurah, Western Australia, apartment, according to CNN
affiliate Australia News 7. Days later, Hefford was pronounced dead. Only
after her death did her family learn that Hefford, the mother of a
7-year-old girl and a 5-year-old boy, had a rare genetic disorder that
prevented her body from properly metabolizing her high-protein diet.
Urea cycle disorder, which causes a deficiency of one enzyme in the urea
cycle, stops the body from breaking down protein, according to the
nonprofit National Urea Cycle Disorders Foundation. Normally, the body can
remove nitrogen, a waste product of protein metabolism, from the blood.
However, a urea cycle disorder would prohibit this. Therefore, nitrogen,
in the form of toxic ammonia, would accumulate in the blood and eventually
reach the brain, where it can cause irreversible damage, coma and death.
"The enzyme deficiency can be mild enough so that the person is able to
detoxify ammonia adequately -- until there's a trigger," said Cynthia Le
Mons, executive director of the foundation. The trigger could be a viral
illness, stress or a high-protein diet, she added.

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"There was just no way of knowing she had it because they don't routinely
test for it," said Michelle White, Hefford's mother and a resident of
Perth. "She started to feel unwell, and she collapsed."
White blames protein shakes for her daughter's death.
'Nuanced symptoms'

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Since 2014, Hefford, who worked at Princess Margaret Hospital for Children
and studied paramedicine, had been competing as a bodybuilder.
It was only after Hefford's death that White discovered containers of
protein supplements in her daughter's kitchen, along with a strict food
plan. White understood then that her daughter, who had been preparing for
another bodybuilding competition, had also been consuming an unbalanced
diet.

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Hefford was eating "way too much protein," said White, which triggered her
daughter's unknown urea cycle condition. (For most healthy people, a
high-protein diet, when followed for a short time, generally isn't
harmful, according to the Mayo Clinic.) Hefford's diet included
protein-rich foods, such as lean meat and egg white, in addition to
protein shakes and supplements, her mother said.

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"There's medical advice on the back of all the supplements to seek out a
doctor, but how many young people actually do?" White asked.

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snip

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The Australian Medical Association says there's no real health benefit to
such supplements. And, while they may not be necessary for most people,
they're not dangerous to most, either.
Treatment

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The estimated incidence of urea cycle disorders is 1 in 8,500 births.
Since many cases remain undiagnosed, the exact incidence is unknown and
believed to be underestimated.





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