Archive for the ‘diet and nutrition’ Category

Coconut Oil Poisonous?

https://wellnessjourneys.org/2018/08/29/is-coconut-oil-a-poison-by-dr-bruce-fife-coconut-research-center/

Coconut_Clipart_Cartoon-Custom

By Dr. Bruce Fife

Coconut oil is poisonous, so claims Karin Michels, PhD, a part-time professor at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health.

Her comments given in a talk at the University of Freiburg, Germany, sparked a media frenzy with headlines such as, “Coconut Oil is Pure Poison Harvard Professor Claims” appearing in newspapers and on the internet.

What makes Dr. Michels an authority on coconut oil? She is not a physician, or a nutritionist, or even a biologist. Her PhD is in biostatistics. Her specialty is statistics—manipulating numbers—not the study of diet or fats and oils. From her profile on the Harvard website, it appears she has never published any studies on saturated fat, let alone on coconut oil. Her comments were not based on any of her own published research, but were simply her opinion based on old, outdated theories about saturated fats.

Michels calls coconut oil “pure poison,” saying it was “one of the worst foods you can eat” because it is full of saturated fat, and “saturated fatty acids can clog your arteries.” She adds that “there is no study that proves significant health benefits of coconut oil.”

Dr. Michels makes three general claims:

  1. saturated fats cause heart disease
  2. coconut oil is a poison and one of the worst foods we could eat
  3. there are no studies that show any health benefits to coconut oil.

Let’s look at what the science actually says about each of these statements.

Saturated Fats Cause Heart Disease

There has never been a study published that has been able to show that saturated fats or coconut oil cause heart disease. The diet-heart disease hypothesis that has been popular for the past 6 decades basically states that heart disease is caused by high cholesterol. Many studies have shown that some saturated fats can raise blood cholesterol, and therefore it has be assumed that eating too much saturated fat can promote or even cause heart disease. Researchers have been trying to prove this hypothesis for over a half a century without success. In fact, many studies have seriously challenged this hypothesis and serious researchers have now moved on to studying new, more likely, causes for heart disease.

Cholesterol is no longer considered the evil villain as it was once portrayed. There are many types of cholesterol, some good and some potentially harmful. Saturated fats, and in particular coconut oil, have been shown to raise HDL, the good cholesterol, that has been shown to protect against heart disease. The ratio of total cholesterol to HDL cholesterol is considered one of the most accurate and reliable indicators of heart disease risk. Coconut oil raises HDL, which lowers the cholesterol ratio, thus lowering the risk of heart disease.1

It is apparent that Dr. Michels has not kept up with the current science on coconut oil or fats and oils in general. Earlier this year researchers at the University of Cambridge School of Clinical Medicine published a study on the relationship between coconut oil and heart disease risk. The researchers compared the effects of coconut oil with butter and olive oil. Butter was chosen to represent a commonly used highly saturated animal fat and extra virgin olive oil was chosen as it is generally regarded as one of, if not the healthiest of fats. The study involved 96 participants who were assigned to consume 50 mg (about 3 tablespoons) of one of each of the three oils daily for 4 weeks as a part of their ordinary diet. The researchers found that coconut oil dramatically raises the protective HDL cholesterol without affecting the LDL or so-called bad cholesterol. Coconut oil lowered the cholesterol ratio, and the risk of heart disease, more than either of the other two fats, indicating that it is even more heart-friendly than extra virgin olive oil.2

In recent years numerous studies have exonerated saturated fat as a cause of heart disease and put to rest the outdated diet-heart disease hypothesis. Last year the Lancet, one of the most prestigious medical journals in the world, published a study involving a team of 37 researchers from 18 countries. They gathered data on 135,000 subjects to evaluate heart disease risk in relation to fat intake. They discovered that fat consumption protected against heart disease and increased lifespan. Those people who cut back on fats, including saturated fat, had far shorter lives than those who ate coconut oil, butter, cheese, and meats. Consuming high levels of all fats, cut early death rates by up to 23 percent. The researchers stated that they found no correlation between saturated fat consumption and cardiovascular disease and that current dietary restrictions on saturated fat should be revised.3

This isn’t the only study in recent years that has called for a revision on the recommendation to restrict saturated fats. A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition a year earlier investigated whether dietary saturated fat was associated with ischemic heart disease. The study involved 35,597 participants. The researchers also concluded that high saturated fat intake was not associated with increased risk of ischemic heart disease.4

In 2010 a groundbreaking study was published clearly showing that saturated fats do not cause heart disease. The study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition analyzed all the previous studies with data for dietary saturated fat intakes and the risk of cardiovascular disease. This meta-analysis combined the data from 21 previously published studies, involving over 347,000 subjects. The study showed that there was no connection between saturated fat consumption and heart disease. Those people who ate the greatest amount of saturated fat where no more likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke than those who ate the least. No matter how much saturated fat one ate, the incidence of heart disease was not affected. This was the most complete review of the medical research on saturated fat ever done up to this time.5

Four years later, a different group of researchers from Cambridge University published another meta-analysis. This time the researchers combined the data from 72 previously published studies involving more than 600,000 participants from 18 countries. The researchers basically combined all the highest quality studies on fats and diet that had been done for the past several decades and analyzed them together. The results confirmed the previous meta-analysis—there is no connection between saturated fat intake and heart disease.6

The studies are clear, neither saturated fat nor coconut oil cause or even promote heart disease. Because they raise good HDL cholesterol and lower the cholesterol ratio, if anything, they help to protect against it.

Coconut Oil Is a Poison and One of the Worst Foods We Could Eat

Dr. Michels calls coconut oil a “pure poison.” She claims it is not just a poison, but a “pure” poison; the connotation is, that it is extremely dangerous at even the smallest dosage. What is a poison? According to the English Oxford Living Dictionary, poison is defined as, “A substance that is capable of causing the illness or death of a living organism when introduced or absorbed.” Does coconut oil fit this definition? Not hardly.

Coconut oil has been a major part of the diet of millions of people for thousands of years. In all that time it has never been known to cause any illness or kill anyone. On the contrary, there are many plants that are poisonous such as hemlock, belladonna (deadly nightshade), and death cap mushrooms. Consuming any of them, even in small amounts, will bring about sudden illness and quick death. Coconut oil, on the other hand, can be consumed daily in relatively large quantities without any ill effect. I know some people who consume as much as 12 tablespoons (180 ml) a day and are in excellent health.

According the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) coconut oil is perfectly harmless. It is included among the FDA’s exclusive GRAS (Generally Regarded as Safe) list of food substances. To be included on this list requires rigorous testing to confirm that the item is safe. Coconut oil is given a GRAS classification of “1,” which is the highest or safest category within the GRAS list. According to the FDA this means that all available studies and historical data have shown that there is “no evidence” that shows or even “suggests” that coconut oil is harmful in any way.7

It is ironic that Dr. Michels calls coconut oil a poison, because it has proven to be not only harmless, but highly effective in saving the lives of people who have ingested actual poisons. The medical literature has described numerous instances in which coconut oil has been used in hospital settings as an antidote to otherwise fatal poisonings. For instance, the use of coconut oil has become a routine practice in some hospitals in the treatment of aluminum phosphide poisoning.8 Aluminum phosphide is a common poison used for rodent control. There is no other known antidote and poisonings are almost always fatal unless treated with coconut oil.

Using coconut oil to nullify the effects of poisons is not that unusual. Researchers have known for many years about the detoxifying properties of coconut oil. Numerous animal studies have shown that coconut oil blocks the deleterious effects of a number of different chemical toxins. Coconut oil has been shown to alleviate the effects of at least 36 known toxins ranging from industrial solvents to aflatoxin.9

Calling coconut oil a pure poison only illustrates Dr. Michels’ lack of knowledge about coconut oil, which makes anything she says about it totally unreliable.

There Are No Studies That Show Any Health Benefits to Coconut Oil

One of the most common arguments given in an attempt to discredit coconut oil is to claim that there is no evidence proving coconut oil has any health benefits. When a doctor or professor makes this statement, he or she is inferring that there are no studies to support the use of coconut oil as a healthy fat. They are counting on the listener to take their word on this simply because they are considered an expert. In reality, what they are doing is exposing their own ignorance and lack of knowledge on the subject.

When someone makes this type of statement it means they have not bothered to make even the slightest effort to find the facts. If they had, they would have found an abundance of information and research on coconut oil describing its many health benefits. Currently, there are over 10,000 studies on coconut oil listed in the medical literature. Most of these studies can be easily accessed on the internet.

If you go to my website,www.coconutresearchcenter.org and look under the heading “Medical Research,” you will find a listing of hundreds of studies. Here you will find references to an abundance of published studies showing the therapeutic or beneficial effects of coconut oil on cardiovascular health, immune function, cancer, diabetes, liver and kidney health, digestive function, weight management, and much more. To say that there is no evidence for the health benefits of coconut oil is totally wrong and indicates that the speaker is either woefully ignorant, too lazy to do any research, or lying.

If you want to know the truth about saturated fats and coconut oil you should not listen to professors who have no idea what they are talking about, instead listen to researchers who have actually researched the topic. One of the reasons why Dr. Michels’ comments received such notoriety is because of her association with Harvard. Being a Harvard professor gives a person some air of authority. However, there are other Harvard professors who are far more qualified than Dr. Michels on this subject, who have studied and published works on the health effects of coconut oil. One group of Harvard researchers that includes George L. Blackburn, MD, PhD, Edward Mascioli, MD, and Vigan K. Babyan, PhD state,

“Coconut oil has an important medical role to play in nutrition, metabolism, and health care. Indeed, properly formulated and utilized, coconut oil may be the preferred vegetable oil in our diet and the special hospital foods used promoting patient recovery.”

These researchers made this statement after having spent years studying the health effects of coconut oil and other fats. Their comments hold far more authority than a biostatistician who apparently has never even bothered to do even an internet search on the subject.

References

  1. Assuncao, ML, et al. Effects of dietary coconut oil on the biochemical and anthropometric profiles of women presenting abdominal obesity. Lipids 2009;44:593-601.
  2. Khaw, KT, et al. Randomised trial of coconut oil, olive oil or butter on blood lipids and other cardiovascular risk factors in healthy men and women. BMJ Open 2018;8:e020167.
  3. Dehghan, M, et al. Associations of fats and carbohydrate intake with cardiovascular disease and mortality in 18 countries from five continents (PURE): a prospective cohort study. Lancet 2017;390:2050-2062.
  4. Praagman, J, et al. The association between dietary saturated fatty acids and ischemic heart disease depends on the type and source of fatty acid in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition-Netherlands cohort. Am J Clin Nutr 2016;103:356-365.
  5. Siri-Tarino, PW, et al. Meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies evaluating the association of saturated fat with cardiovascular disease. Am J Clin Nutr 2010;91:535-546.
  6. Chowdhury, R, et al. Association of dietary, circulating, and supplement fatty acids with coronary risk: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Ann Intern Med 2014;160:398-406.
  7. https://www.fda.gov/Food/IngredientsPackagingLabeling/GRAS/SCOGS/default.htm.
  8. Singh Baiwa, SJ, et al. Management of celphos poisoning with a novel intervention: a ray of hope in the darkest of clouds. Anesth Essays Res 2010;4:20-24.
  9. Fife, B. Ketone Therapy: The Ketogenic Cleanse and Anti-Aging Diet. Piccadilly Books, Ltd.: Colorado Springs, CO; 2017.

_________________

Information on Dr. Fife here:  http://www.faim.org/dr-bruce-fife

Dr. Bruce Fife is a certified nutritionist and naturopathic physician. He is the author of more than 20 books including The Coconut Oil Miracle, The New Arthritis Cure, and Stop Alzheimer’s Now!: How to Prevent and Reverse Dementia, Parkinson’s, ALS, Multiple Sclerosis, and Other Neurodegenerative Disorders. He serves as the director of the Coconut Research Center in Colorado.

News story on Michels here:  https://www.businessinsider.com/harvard-speaker-busts-coconut-oil-health-myth-calling-it-pure-poison-2018-8

 

 

 

Toxic-Free Healthy Home Makeover

 Approx. 4 Min

Toxic-Free Healthy Home Makeover [Trailer]

Watch the trailer & reserve your spot for the full-length global premiere HERE: https://DrEricZ.com/HomeMakeover Get INSTANT ACCESS to a Video Tour of Our Home + Shopping List to Help You Give Your Bath, Garden, Kitchen, Laundry & Pantry a Total Health Makeover! SPECIAL BONUS: Register TODAY & get Mama Z’s Recipe Makeover Guide!

For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/09/14/diy-soaps-powders-cleaners-and-more-using-essential-oils/

What’s the Best Diet for Lyme Disease? Dr. Rawls

What’s the Best Diet for Lyme Disease?

Published on Aug 8, 2018
What are the best foods to eat and avoid to ease the fatigue, pain, brain fog and other symptoms of Lyme disease?
Dr. Bill Rawls shares his three key Lyme diet guidelines.
Written transcript:
Question: What’s the Best Diet for Lyme Disease?

Dr. Rawls here with some tips on diet.

When you look at any kind of chronic illness —Lyme disease or any other illness — gut dysfunction is always a component, and a lot of it stems from eating a poor diet. Just the process of digestion itself can cause gut dysfunction. So diet is really, really important.

We could go on for hours and hours about diet, but I’ve tried to boil it down to three basic guidelines. If you can adopt these three habits, then you will change your life from a diet point of view. You’ll feel better, and you’ll start getting well faster. Diet is really key.

Guideline #1: Eat more vegetables than anything else. Vegetables are just such an important component of diet. Vegetables supply the kind of fiber that keeps our gut and digestive process hydrated. It’s the kind of fiber that feeds the right bacteria. It’s the kind of fiber that helps pull toxins out of your body.

Vegetable fiber is very different than grain fiber, plus there are all the other antioxidants and wonderful things that come in vegetables. That’s my top rule for anything that is related to diet. No matter what diet you follow, the number one rule is, eat more vegetables than anything else.

Fruits? They’re also pretty darn good. They have a lot of the same antioxidants and good fiber and everything else, but also a lot more sugar. Temperate fruits like apples and blueberries are really good.

Guideline #2: Try to minimize the processed food. This is one that I struggle with every day, too. When I go to the grocery store, my target is not reading the labels on food, but instead I shoot for a goal of trying to make 90% of my food come without a label. Instead I buy lots of fruits and vegetables and fresh foods that I take home and prepare myself. Being part of the food preparation process is a wonderful part of life, and of being part of the food environment.

If you can, shoot for a goal of looking at your cart and saying, “90% of this doesn’t have a label on it,” or, “It’s basically a single ingredient like a carton of milk or a tub of butter.” And then avoid foods where you’re looking at the label and thinking, “Wow, I don’t understand some of these ingredients on this label.” Those are better left on the shelf.

Now, it’s hard to do that with everything. I don’t make my own mayonnaise, I don’t make my own ketchup, so there are certain things I buy. If you can aim for that 90% goal, you’re going to cut out a lot of those high-carb processed food products that are harming people.

The high-carb processed food products derived from wheat, corn, and soybeans are a leading cause of illness in our country today. If you make that rule of making your own food from fresh ingredients, you’re going to cut all of that processed stuff out at the beginning.

Guideline #3: Eat healthy protein and fat sources. Top of my list for protein is predominantly fish and eggs. Right now, the most cost-effective and available source of good protein on the planet is fresh wild-caught salmon from Alaska. It’s remarkably inexpensive compared to other protein sources. So, I eat healthy fish and eggs.

I also eat some poultry. I occasionally eat red meat, but not very often because of the high fat content and the other things that come with it. So if you can, shoot for good, healthy protein and fat sources.

Another great fat source includes olive oil. That’s my main cooking oil, but I don’t cook it at a high temperature so I don’t burn the oil. I eat a lot of avocados. I use a little bit of ghee (clarified butter) in my cooking because it adds another dimension to the cooking that’s really special, and ghee doesn’t burn when you heat it on the stove. It doesn’t disrupt the fats like some of your refined vegetable oils.

Those are the top three things. If you can really focus on those things alone, you will do wonders for your diet and well-being.

_________________

More on Diet:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/05/15/overview-of-anti-inflammatory-diets/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/04/18/comparative-diets-to-address-chronic-inflammation/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/02/03/do-these-popular-diets-make-you-nutrient-deficient/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/01/03/the-invisible-universe-of-the-human-microbiome-msm/

 

 

The Facts About Candida Overgrowth & How to Overcome It

https://www.wakingtimes.com/2018/06/28/the-facts-about-candida-overgrowth-and-how-to-overcome-it/

The Facts About Candida Overgrowth and How to Overcome It

June 28, 2018
candida overgrowth

Anna Hunt, Staff Writer
Waking Times

Candida is an essential fungus, a form of yeast, that lives in the human body. You can find it in the mouth and the intestines. Although it is normal to have some of this fungus in the body, candida can also invade the body beyond what is acceptable. This is called candida overgrowth, and it can have some detrimental health effects.

Candida Overgrowth

Having too much candida in the body can result in several health problems. This includes all types of digestive issues because too much candida can break down the walls of the intestines. In addition, candida overgrowth may cause problems such as depression, lack of energy, and a whole lot of annoying ailments.

When the production of candida in the body is out of control, it can manifest the following problems:

  • Allergies, sensitivities and intolerance to anything or any place that’s damp or moldy.
  • Hay fever and asthma.
  • Higher sensitivity to typical allergens, such as perfumes, smoke, odors, pets, dust, molds, pollen, and other airborne substances.
  • Athletes’ foot or fungus growth on other parts of the body.
  • Low body temperature, resulting on cold hands and feet.
  • Cold-like symptoms, including excessive mucus, as well as flu-like symptoms.
  • Digestive problems, such as constipation, abdominal bloating or pain, acid reflux, and gas.
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus), ear infections, ear aches, and abnormal wax build-up.
  • Fatigue, chronic fatigue and general feeling of being drained of energy.
  • Swollen salivary glands, dryness in the mouth, and swollen lymph nodes.
  • Dry or itchy scalp, dandruff, scalp sores, and hair loss.
  • Headaches, migraines, brain fog, and dizziness.
  • Fungal infections of the skin or nails.
  • Joint stiffness, swelling or pain.
  • Lack of appetite.
  • Nasal congestion, postnasal drip, sinus inflammation or infections.
  • Muscle aches and pains, including numbness and tingling, as well as lack of strength and coordination.
  • Dry skin, acne, hives, itching skin, and rashes, including eczema and psoriasis.
  • Sleep problems, such as frequent waking up and restless sleep, as well as insomnia.

FREE ONLINE EVENT: The Candida Summit – register today

The sad part is that candida overgrowth may be easily mistaken for other illnesses. Therefore, medical professionals often treat the symptoms of candida overgrowth, and not the actual problem of candida.

Why Does Candida Get Out of Control?

One of the biggest culprits in candida overgrowth are antibiotics. These medications wipe out all bacteria, including beneficial bacteria in the digestive system. On the other hand, antibiotics do not affect candida, because it is a fungus. As a result, taking antibiotics can create an imbalance in the body.

Now, if the immune system is strong, it can usually handle the effects of candida overgrowth. Unfortunately, many people have a weakened immune system because the typical western diet lacks the nutrients necessary to maintain strong immune function.

The standard diet consists of lots of carbohydrates, hydrogenated oils, trans-fats, sugar, white flour products, and processed foods. In addition, food growers often treat live foods with pesticides and herbicides. As well, they grow these foods in nutrient-depleted soil and radiate them to extend shelf-live.

Consequently, mainstream food choices do not give us the nutrients and healthy probiotic properties necessary to maintain a healthy immune system. As a result, when candida overgrowth happens, the body frequently starts to break down.

Some other factors that may contribute to candida population growing beyond what is healthy are:

  • A diet high in sugar and refined carbohydrates,
  • Drinking too much alcohol, and
  • A stressful lifestyle.

Simple Home Test

The best way to know for sure if you have candida overgrowth is to see a holistic practitioner. However, you can try the following test at home:

  1. Make sure you conduct this test first thing in the morning, before you eat or drink anything.
  2. Fill a glass with room-temperature, filtered water.
  3. Work up some saliva and spit it into the glass of water.
  4. Wait 30 minutes (you may need to wait up to 60 minutes) and check the saliva. If you see string traveling down into the water from the saliva, or if cloudy saliva has sunk to the bottom of the glass, you may have a candida problem.
What You Should Do to Help with Candida Overgrowth

There is a process that you can follow to control candida overgrowth. The important thing is that you execute the following five steps simultaneously:

1. Eliminate sugary foods that feed candida.

These include foods with sweeteners such as honey and fructose. In addition, you may want to limit the intake of fruits because they are high in sugar.

When buying processed meats, always read the ingredients because many contain sugar. In fact, read the ingredients list for all processed foods. You’ll be surprised just how many contain sweeteners. Of course, don’t forget that alcohol and many drinks, like a chai latte and coffee drinks, also have lots of sugar.

2. Strengthen your immune system.

This requires a healthy diet, high in lean proteins, good fats and low carbohydrates. All the foods you eat should be fresh and as natural as possible. This means limit processed foods so you eat fewer additives, heavy metals, pesticides and other food industry chemicals.

Another step in supporting a healthy immune system is to supplement with essential vitamins and minerals. The best way to understand what supplements you need is to ask your healthcare practitioner to administer a blood test. Some typical supplements that typically help fortify the immune system are:

  • Chlorella, a whole food that has many vitamins and minerals. It helps the body purge heavy metals and pesticides.
  • Vitamin C, one of the biggest immune system boosters. Since we get lots of Vitamin C from fruit, you are more likely to be Vitamin C deficient when limiting fruit intake to eliminate sugar from your diet. Vegetables rich in Vitamin C include kale, spinach, and broccoli.
  • Vitamin E, a powerful antioxidant that helps the body fight off infection. Foods rich in vitamin E include nuts, seeds and spinach.

3. Kill off candida overgrowth.

The most effective way to start getting rid of excess candida is to fortify your diet with anti-fungal foods. These include the following:

  • Raw garlic, which contains Sulfur compounds with anti-fungal properties. Fresh garlic is most potent, especially if you first crush it and wait about 10 minutes before consuming it. Of course, you can eat the garlic with a meal to conceal the taste. Just keep it raw.
  • Raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar, preferably Bragg brand. It is best to dilute 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar in a glass of room temperature water. Then, drink 30-60 minutes before a meal.
  • Olive leaf extract, which contains a phenolic compound with antiviral and anti-fungal properties.
  • Pau d’arco, which is sold as a tea or as a capsule supplement.

Remember that taking too many supplements can be a strain on the liver, so always check with your healthcare provider if you plan to take several supplements at one time. The ideal way to supplement is to eat a large variety of organic raw vegetables.

4. Introduce more good bacteria into the digestive system.

It is essential that you re-establish the balance of candida and good bacteria in your body. The best way to do this is by eating foods rich in probiotics, or “friendly” bacteria. These are also called probiotics.

Probiotics are present in foods such as yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha. The best way to get high quality probiotics into your system is to make fermented vegetables at home. Probiotic drinks are also very easy to make at home.

As well, you can buy probiotic supplements with a minimum of 50 billion CFUs (colony forming units). If possible, purchase probiotic supplements that require refrigeration.

5. Stay calm and expect the best results from your healing process.

When your body is already compromised, the last thing you need is stress. Stress on its own can make all the other previous four steps ineffective. In fact, it may have been a culprit in candida overgrowth in the first place.

It is important to utilize several stress relieving techniques during your healing process to help you stay calm. These include exercise, meditation and yoga. Also, don’t forget to have some fun!

Another important aspect of staying stress-free is to take it easy on yourself. Do your best following the steps above, and always be patient and kind to yourself.

Finally, having the right mindset is just as important as following a healthy diet. If you believe that your self-care efforts will pay off in improved health, then that will be your end result. There is a reason why the placebo effect works! The mind is one of the most powerful healing tools, so don’t forget to use it.

About the Author
Anna Hunt is writer, yoga instructor, mother of three, and lover of healthy food. She’s the founder of Awareness Junkie, an online community paving the way for better health and personal transformation. She’s also the co-editor at Waking Times, where she writes about optimal health and wellness. Anna spent 6 years in Costa Rica as a teacher of Hatha and therapeutic yoga. She now teaches at Asheville Yoga Center and is pursuing her Yoga Therapy certification. During her free time, you’ll find her on the mat or in the kitchen, creating new kid-friendly superfood recipes.

Sources: 

mindbodygreen.com
nourishedmagazine.com
thecandidadiet.com
preventdisease.com

This article (The Facts About Candida Overgrowth and How to Overcome It) was originally created and published by Waking Times and is published here under a Creative Commonslicense with attribution to Anna Hunt and WakingTimes.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this copyright statement.

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of Waking Times or its staff.

Jen Springer, 2016

3 Reasons You Can’t Get Rid Of Candida Yeast : HCL, estrogen, thyroid.
  1. The first thing most people miss is restoring the pH to the proper level in the stomach. pH of 2-4. If you don’t get to that level your stomach doesn’t catalyze the pancreas to make enzymes, the gallbladder to make bile, and the proper growth of acid loving good bacteria: acidophilus. Betaine HCL is what you need before any other supplements. SIBO is caused by low stomach HCL. Low good bacteria is from low stomach HCL. The right pH needs to be first before anything else.
  2. Estrogen dominance / imbalance. Many people have estrogen higher than testosterone and progesterone. Even excess environmental estrogenic toxins. This causes high insulin and blood sugar levels. High blood sugar is YEAST FOOD!!! Yeast loves sugar. You be come a puffy loaf of bread.
  3. The thyroid!!! The candida likes to grow when the body is not operating at 98.6. When the body is low, like 97.5, the body can’t cook off the pathogens and keep them in check.
________________________________________
In my search for answers I found this:
This chiropractor resolved her candida with this treatment:
  • 1 drop clove essential oil mixed with olive or coconut oil in a capsule in the am and pm (so twice a day)  
  • Increase to a maximum dose of 6 drops of clove in oil per capsule twice a day
  • Use for 14 days then take a break for a week or two
  • It might take a few cycles to resolve
  • She noticed a “yeast dump” on day 8 of the first cycle
  • Clove oil is supposedly 75% more effective than Nystatin
  • Make sure you use reputable sources for all ingredients
Please work with your medical practitioner on all treatment suggestions.

For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/08/02/can-these-essential-oils-help-lyme-patients-overcome-chronic-candida/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/07/16/understanding-candida-overgrowth-natural-solutions-for-yeast-infection/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/07/05/candid-signs-you-have-it-what-to-do-the-candida-summit-online-free-july-9-15-2018/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2014/10/17/candida-the-chameleon/

 

 

The Cocktail Effect

The following article is a reminder that we must be ever diligent about what we put into and onto our bodies and I would add into our minds.  It’s also a reminder that we need to consider everything we are taking and understand the possible synergistic effects of those substances.  It’s common for patients to not be completely honest with their medical professionals about everything they are taking.  They will be open about all the pharmaceutical agents but they often are reticent to mention the so-called “natural” substances as they fear the potential negative reactions; however, this is a mistake from numerous standpoints – 1) trained professionals can only truly help if they know everything the patient is taking 2) “natural” substances have effects as well 3) the combination or synergy of everything we are taking might interact into what Dr. Brogan calls “The Cocktail Effect.”

Be honest with yourself and your practitioners.

Also, remember that people have vested interests and it’s often about sales not you.  Only you truly care about you.  Take the time to learn.  Ask your pharmacist questions.  Learn.  Never quit learning.  It won’t be wasted.

And lastly, if you’ve read anything I’ve ever written, it’s become clear that scientists and researchers have vested interests as well.  And these interests do not concern primarily you.  Their heads have been turned by the bombshells in the corner:  money & power.

https://kellybroganmd.com/the-cocktail-effect/?

The Cocktail Effect

Be skeptical.

Be very skeptical when you are delivered platitudes of reassurance about the safety of chemicals and pharmaceutical products from those who stand to profit from their sales. It can take more than a decade for signals of harm to trickle into consciousness.  We have an even more complex problem at play here: scientists are not doing the right types of studies.

I specialized, in residency and fellowship, in the “safety” of psychiatric medications during pregnancy and breastfeeding. After memorizing every study on the subject, I furrowed my brow and said, “Hold on a minute…these studies aren’t asking the right questions!” They ask – are babies born on time, are they big or small, and are they born with ten fingers and ten toes.

In today’s modern day toxic soup, these questions miss the mark of establishing the risk of chronic disease and neurodevelopmental delay and dysfunction. These studies tend not to control for important variables of biochemical individuality such as inflammatory markers, the gut microbiome, and obesity. And they definitely don’t ask questions about synergy.

What’s Synergy?

It’s the dynamic effects of toxicants in combination. It’s the new toxicology. One that acknowledges that even low doses of chemicals, particularly when combined, can sabotage cellular processes. It also acknowledges the role of hormones in this reaction, from cortisol to estrogen.

A powerful new study published in Nature Communications meets the science head on, exploring the Cocktail Effect. It looks at the effect of a synthetic estrogen in the birth control pill  on the toxicity of a pesticide. The endocrine disrupting potential of the more than 150,000 chemicals in our environment may have the capacity to disrupt our metabolism when combined with pharmaceutical exposures as common as oral contraceptives.

Delfosse et al are the first to identify how this can happen by showing that independent chemical molecules can help each other plug into the same hormonal receptor and activate it in a supercharged way. The amazing fact is that these chemicals have this hormonal effect at doses at which they are inactive when separate. In their non-user-friendly jargon, they state:

Our results suggest that the formation of ‘supramolecular ligands’ within the ligand-binding pocket of nuclear receptors contributes to the synergistic toxic effect of chemical mixtures, which may have broad implications for the fields of endocrine disruption, toxicology and chemical risk assessment.

What this means is that one chemical/toxicant can make you more vulnerable to another, as we have seen with glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, and that multiple chemicals can wreak more havoc than individual chemicals alone.

Here’s one more reason to ditch birth control, go organic, and clean up your products!

_________________

**Comment**

Great, great reminder.  If you haven’t begun this life “clean up” process, take a deep breath and realize it took you decades to develop your habits.  It’s going to take some time to change them.  Please, don’t beat up on yourself now, just start.  Take one thing and then when you are able, take another thing.

I remember feeling so overwhelmed when I first found out both my husband and I were infected with numerous tick borne illnesses.  I knew we were at the precipice of something monumental and my mind went crazy with the implications – from how we were going to pay the monumental out-of-pocket medical bills, to the implications of homeschooling 3 teenagers (something we were already doing but now were ill & broke to boot), to the timing of the plethora of medications, to considering dietary, and other changes that needed to be made.  It seriously made me want to scream in frustration as I was having trouble remembering why I walked into a room!  The insomnia was maddening and I couldn’t handle stress at all.  The pain sent me to the fetal position in bed, and trying to unravel my husband’s hallucinations made me feel as if I stepped into a Sci-Fy novel of the worst kind – the kind where reality and fantasy are inseparable.

So just begin by putting one foot in front of the other.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Methylation – What You Need to Know

https://vitalplan.com/blog/methylation-what-you-need-to-know?

Methylation: What You Need to Know

by Dr. Bill Rawls | Posted June 9, 2018

Methylation-What-you-need-to-know
If you haven’t yet heard the term methylation, there’s a good chance you’ll soon start hearing it a lot more. Many people are beginning to clue into the importance of this biochemical process, which is a key component of overall wellness, and yet myths and misconceptions are more common than facts. Understanding methylation, and knowing how to optimize it, can give you an edge on staying healthy as you age.
So what is methylation? In biochemical terms, methylation is when a “methyl group” consisting of three hydrogen atoms and one carbon atom are linked to another molecule. Attaching a methyl group to an organic molecule (a chemical compound that contains carbon) makes it less reactive.
In more laymen terms, methylation is a process of making molecules more stable, which is important for a wide range of metabolic functions in the body. For starters, it balances hormone and neurotransmitter activity, and regulates protein synthesis and cellular energy. It processes DNA/RNA, the molecules that are responsible for storing and reading our genetic information, and repairs DNA. And it optimizes the functions of T-cells, white blood cells that play a key role in immune response.
Methylation also helps neutralize toxic substances: When methyl groups attach to organic toxins such as heavy metals, it reduces their toxicity and allows for easier removal from the body. When you consider that the modern world is loaded with higher concentrations of artificial toxins than ever before in history, maintaining optimal methylation is increasingly vital.
One of the most important roles of methylation is regulating the expression of genes. At any given time, you are using only about 1% of your genetic material; the rest of it is in “off” mode. But there are certain factors notorious for turning on “bad” genes that are associated with chronic illness, many of which are unique to the modern world. These include eating a poor diet high in processed food products, exposure to environmental toxicants, dealing with chronic stress, and having a sedentary lifestyle.
This is where methylation comes in — the way the body turns off “bad” genes is by attaching methyl groups to genetic material. Of course, if you don’t change your diet and lifestyle, the bad genes will turn on and/or stay on. Keep stressing your genes, and all the methyl groups in the world aren’t going to help you stay well.

The role of poor methylation in chronic illness

This is a huge misconception: People with symptoms of chronic illness — typical ones being fatigue, neurological symptoms, mood disorders like anxiety, and insomnia, to name a few — are being told that poor methylation is the cause of their illness. But in fact, it’s those same stressors that activate bad genes that increase susceptibility to illness; poor methylation just compounds the problem.

The Western diet is the biggest culprit. The body relies on a steady stream of methyl donors from certain foods to support the metabolic functions that are dependent on methylation. (Methyl donors are any substance that can transfer a methyl group — three hydrogen atoms and one carbon atom — to another substance.) It can use a variety of methyl donors, but the four most important components are methionine (an amino acid) and the B vitamins: methylfolate (B-9), B-12, and B-6.

Unfortunately, modern grain- and meat-based diets are very poor sources of methylfolate and other B vitamins. Food companies often try to compensate for the loss of natural folate by adding folic acid to their products, but it’s not an adequate substitute. What’s more, people who over-consume processed foods tend to develop gastrointestinal problems and lose the ability to produce a substance called intrinsic factor, which is essential for absorption of vitamin B-12.

Genetics also play a role in methylation proficiency. About 50% of the population carries a mutated gene (MTHFR) for an enzyme called 5-MTHF reductase. This gene is necessary to convert homocysteine (an amino acid most abundant in meat) into methionine, an amino acid that’s essential for the methylation process. About 40% of the population carries one MTHFR mutation, and 12% of the population carries a double mutation.

Having MTHFR mutations, however, may be less of a factor in chronic illness than some experts suggest. The evidence linking concerns such as myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and Parkinson’s disease to the presence of a mutated 5-MTHF reductase gene is mild at best. Scientific investigations have shown only a very slight increased incidence of chronic illnesses in affected individuals.

That’s because this genetic pathway is only one of a variety methylation pathways. The human body would never rely on a single option for a function like methylation which is so essential for life. In addition, for most of history, humans consumed large amounts of plant matter that provided all the components necessary for methylation (methionine, B-9, B-12, and B-6). It’s only in recent history, as our diet has become more plant- and nutrient-deficient, that this particular genetic methylation pathway has become “essential.”

How to know when it’s time to test

People often ask which symptoms indicate they should get tested for poor methylation, but there are no pure telltale signs. My answer is, if you have classic symptoms of chronic illness such as fibromyalgia or ME/CFS, and you eat a lot of processed foods and very few vegetables, it’s pretty safe to assume have poor methylation.

The biggest reason to have the test is to determine whether you have a double mutation, in which case supplementation with natural folates may be valuable. Determining whether you have a MTHFR mutation requires a simple blood test that costs about $150.

Checking for elevations of homocysteine in your blood can tell you the degree of the problem: The higher your homocysteine levels, the lower the formation of methylfolate for making methionine, if methylation mutations are present. More than anything else, elevations of homocysteine indicate over-reliance on grains and meat as a food source.

6 ways to support proper methylation

Maintaining proper levels of methylation is important for health, but it must be part of a more comprehensive strategy. Again, nothing can balance the damage that comes from eating a nutrient-poor diet, living in a toxic environment, allowing stress to get the best of you, and sitting all day. Follow the simple steps below to help ensure optimal methylation, and whether or not you carry a MTHFR mutation will become a non-issue:

1. Eat your veggies.


Focus especially on dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale, as well as asparagus, broccoli, cauliflower, and peas and beans (preferably sprouted). A healthy, plant-based diet containing these foods is the number one way to ensure you take in plenty of methylfolate, one of the primary methyl donors.

2. Get plenty of B vitamins.


Folate is a B vitamin, but vitamins B6 and B12 can be important methyl donors, too. You’ll find them in salmon, eggs, nuts and seeds, plus bananas, avocados, and soy.

3. Look for active forms of B-vitamin methyl donors.


If you take daily vitamin and mineral supplements to support your health, check ingredient lists to be sure they contain bioactive forms of the B vitamin methyl donors, which means they’re in a form your body can actually use. Here’s what they’ll look like on the label:

  • Folate (active forms: 5-Methyltetrahydrofolate or l-Methylfolate) Note that folic acid found in most multivitamin products is not satisfactory. It is not absorbed and utilized in the body properly, especially if you have a MTHFR mutation. This is particularly true if you are pregnant, in which case supplement with methylfolate, instead of folic acid, and consume plenty of leafy greens.
  • B6 (active form: Pyridoxal 5-Phosphate)
  • B12 (active forms: Methylcobalamin or Hydroxocobalamin)

4. Supplement with glutathione, if needed.


Glutathione is an essential antioxidant and another methyl donor, and it’s important for a myriad of processes in the body. Supplementing isn’t as necessary for young, healthy people, but chronic illness and aging put extra pressure on the body, so extra glutathione can be beneficial. Taking SAMe is another way to support the methylation process, but again, it’s unnecessary for young, healthy people, or if you’re getting adequate bioavailable B vitamins.

5. Consider restorative herbs.


Opt for herbs that support your immune system, microbiome and other functions such as andrographis, Japanese knotweed, milk thistle and sarsaparilla. “Any of the restorative herbs will help counteract a wide spectrum of stress factors in the body, and therefore help take pressure off of detoxification and healing systems,” Dr. Rawls says. “Cordyceps and reishi are also good examples, because they support immune system functions.”

6. Stay active, manage stress, and cut back on alcohol.


It’s common sense that living a healthy lifestyle helps keep everything in your body running smoothly. But research has started connecting the dots between lifestyle factors such as sedentary behavior, stress, and toxins such as alcohol with changes in DNA methylation.

Proper methylation impacts so many health systems of the body, and the simple steps outlined above can help support and enhance the process — MTHFR gene mutation or not. Enjoy your favorite produce, take steps to stay active and keep stress in check, and supplement with the right nutrients and herbs, and you’ll be paving a path toward a long, healthy, vibrant life.

References
1. Richardson, B. “DNA methylation and autoimmune disease.” Clinical Immunology 2003 Oct;109(1):72-9
2. de Vega, WC et. al. “DNA Methylation Modifications Associated with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.” PLoS One 2014; 9(8): e104757.
3. Sokratous, M. et. al. “Deciphering the role of DNA methylation in multiple sclerosis: emerging issues.” Autoimmunity Highlights. December 2016, 7:12
4. Varela-Rey, M. et. al. “Alcohol, DNA methylation, and cancer.” Alcohol Research. 2013;35(1):25-35.
5. Phillips, T. “The Role of Methylation in Gene Expression.” Nature Education 1(1):116
6. Jones, MJ et. al. “DNA methylation and healthy human aging.” Aging Cell. (2015) 14, pp 924-932
7. Jones, Meaghan J. et. al. “DNA methylation and healthy human aging.” Aging Cell (2015) 14, pp 924-932
8. De Vocht, F. et al. “DNA methylation from birth to late adolescence and development of multiple-risk behaviours.” Journal of Affective Disorders. 2018 Feb; 227: 588–594.

________________

For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/03/23/altered-dna-methylation-mental-illness-lyme-msids/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/04/09/3-part-series-on-genetic-mutations/

 

 

MCAS, Vaccination, & Lyme/MSIDS

I repost the following article because Lyme/MSIDS patients have chronically high inflammation within the body and many struggle with MCAS as well.  Please read the following article and consider your own symptoms.  Discuss these with your doctor.

For more on MCAShttps://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/04/17/mast-cell-activation-syndrome-lymemsids/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/03/13/mcas-lyme-msids/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/03/26/the-agony-of-mcas/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/04/04/more-about-healing-from-mcas/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/04/19/what-to-eat-when-youre-allergic-to-everything/

Mast Cell Disease and Vaccination: Is There Increased Risk?

https://thevaccinereaction.org/2018/07/mast-cell-disease-and-vaccination-is-there-increased-risk/

Mast Cell Disease and Vaccination: Is There Increased Risk?

 

Do you or does someone you know have severe symptoms of itching, rashes, flushing, stomach or other body pain, frequent diarrhea, nausea, fatigue, brain fog, headache and severe allergies to certain foods, medications or insect stings that may include fainting episodes or anaphylaxis? Although it has been classified as a rare immune system disorder, there are indications that Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) may be more prevalent than previously thought and people can suffer for years without being correctly diagnosed.1 With severe allergies and chronic inflammatory diseases increasing in populations around the world, scientists are investigating the association between mast cell dysregulation and various brain and immune system disorders ranging from asthma, inflammatory bowel disease and chronic fatigue syndrome to ADHD, depression, autism and cancer.2 3 4 5

What are Mast Cells?

Mast cells are often described as the body’s sentinels because they modulate and orchestrate the immune response and play a critical role in innate and adaptive immunity, as well as maintaining homeostasis in the body.6 7 Mast cells and basophils are types of white blood cells (granulocytes) that are made in the bone marrow. While basophils circulate in the blood, mast cells reside in tissues, primarily connective and mucosal tissues near blood vessels and nerves of the skin, gastrointestinal, respiratory and genitourinary tracts, and the brain. 9

Mast cells and basophils are part of the body’s first line of defense when responding to injury or foreign antigens, such as pathogenic bacteria, viruses, parasites, protozoa, fungi and toxins.10 During the immune system’s normal protective response to a perceived threat, mast cells can release over 200 potent pro-inflammatory mediators within seconds of activation, including histamine (amino acid product), heparin (anti-coagulant), tryptase (enzyme) and cytokines (cell signaling protein molecules).11 12

The activation of this normal protective inflammatory response to internal or external stress increases blood flow to the site of the infection or wound to aid in healing. Acute inflammatory responses are often accompanied by the four classic signs of redness, heat, swelling and pain, which eventually disappear as cells regenerate and inflammation resolves during the healing process.13 However, allergic inflammatory responses are also provoked by mast cell activation.14

What is Mast Cell Disease and MCAS?

Mast cell activation is common and helps combat threats to our health. However, when a dysregulated immune system overproduces mast cells or when mast cell activation is out of proportion to the perceived internal or external threat, it can compromise our health.

The most serious of mast cell activation diseases (MCAD) is systemic mastocytosis, which can develop when genetically altered mast cells infiltrate and accumulate in large numbers in major organ systems, such as the skin, liver and intestines.15 16 A rare form of MCAD is aggressive systemic mastocytosis, usually caused by somatic mutations in the KIT gene, which progresses rapidly and causes organ damage and failure.17 An even rarer form of mast cell disease is mast cell leukemia and mast cell sarcoma.18

Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) is a common variation of mast cell disease and can be more or less severe depending upon epigenetic, environmental, lifestyle and other host factors. MCAS occurs when a normal amount of mast cells inappropriately and chronically release histamine and other pro-inflammatory mediators that can lead to persistent inflammation in one or more parts of the body. Over time, chronic inflammation can damage cells if inflammation cannot be resolved and every organ in the body can be affected.19

Systemic mastocytosis is estimated to affect 1 in 10,000 people. However, the prevalence of MCAS is not known and some researchers estimate the less serious forms of mast cell dysregulation could affect between 10 and 30 percent of populations.20 21

Symptoms of MCAS

Symptoms of MCAS can wax and wane and often various symptoms start in early childhood, although people generally do not get diagnosed for decades after symptoms appear. The effects of mast cell dysregulation can cause a plethora of diverse symptoms, depending on where the mast cells are activated in the body.

Common symptoms of MCAS can include fatigue; pruritus (severe itching); migraine; frequent nausea and diarrhea; allergic reactions to certain foods, medications, chemicals, insect bites and environmental antigens; chronic sinus congestion or dry cough; gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD); urinary tract infections; muscle cramping; feeling cold; sweating, especially at night; hair loss; dry eyes; conjunctivitis (pink eye); mouth ulcers (canker sores); dental decay; heart palpitations; inability to concentrate and brain fog; anxiety, depression and insomnia.22 23

When mast cells overeact to a benign substance as if it were a foreign antigen posing a serious threat, symptoms can be life threatening like when a person has an anaphylactic reaction to peanuts.24 Mast cell over-activation and release of large amounts of histamine in the body can be unpredictable, so people with MCAS are at risk of reacting to different foods, alcohol or medications at any time, leaving them uncertain as to when they might have another reaction to something they previously were not aware was a trigger for mast cell activation.25 Many people with MCAS carry an epi-pen with them in case of anaphylaxis.

Diagnosing mast cell disease is difficult and involves blood and urine testing and, less frequently, skin or bone marrow biopsy.26 Most medical doctors in general practice are not well informed about MCAS, while doctors specializing in functional medicine tend to be more familiar with symptoms. Functional medicine focuses on a personalized, integrative approach to investigating root causes of health problems by analyzing the unique genetic, epigenetic, biochemical, environmental and lifestyle factors that affect an individual’s immune function and influence the development of complex chronic diseases.

Because MCAS can present differently in different people, the goal is to identify individual triggers for mast cell activation, including food (such as gluten, dairy, baker’s yeast, shellfish, nuts, wheat, corn); or chemicals (alcohol, certain prescription medications, MSG, aspartame, artificial dyes, cleaning products); mold and spores; extreme heat or cold; vigorous exercise; stress or other potential triggers and avoid them.27 There are many unanswered questions about mast cell disease and few prescription drug treatments.28 There is evidence that certain flavonoids (such as Quercetin and Rutin) inhibit histamine release and expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines in mast cells. 29

MCAS and Chronic Disease

Because overactive mast cells release pro-inflammatory mediators causing widespread inflammation in the body, MCAS has been implicated in a number of diseases that involve chronic inflammation and immune dysfunction. There is evidence that MCAS is related to allergic/inflammatory diseases, autoimmune disorders, and autism spectrum disorder.30 31

Health problems that have been associated with MCAS include eczema, psoriasis, and other skin disorders; irritable bowel syndrome; small intestine bowel overgrowth (SIBO); interstitial cystitis (bladder pain syndrome); asthma; migraines; depression; anxiety; ADHD; Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD); autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and Hashimoto’s; cancer; peripheral neuropathy, multiple sclerosis; diabetes; obesity; endometriosis; infertility; fibromyalgia and postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), among others.32 33 34

Symptoms of Histamine Intolerance

Histamine is a neurotransmitter that facilitates communications between neurons throughout the nervous system. Histamine levels in the body help control the sleep and wake cycle and influence metabolism, thyroid function, reproduction and management of stress, as well as regulate body temperature, maintain fluid balance in the body and other important functions. Histamine can also increase permeability of the blood brain barrier.35

People with histamine intolerance lack sufficient levels of Diame oxidase (DAO), a gut enxyme, and histamine N-methyltransferase (HNMT), a liver enzyme, which break down and detoxify histamine in foods, medications or alcohol. When these enzymes fail to do their job, high levels of histamine circulate in the blood and cause histamine intoxication.36 Eating histamine-rich foods, drinking alcohol or taking prescription drugs that release histamine and or inhibit DAO or HNMT enzyme activity can cause high histamine levels and symptoms like diarrhea, headache, sinus congestion, heart palpitations, itching and flushing, low blood pressure and many other symptoms.

The symptoms of histamine intolerance and MCAS are similar and a person can have either histamine intolerance of MCAS or both. The main difference between the two is that histamine intolerance involves the triggering of high levels of histamine in the blood that cannot be efficiently detoxified, while MCAS involves dysregulated mast cells releasing not only histamine but multiple inflammatory and other types of mediators in tissues of the body.37

There is some evidence for genetic predisposition to histamine intolerance.  Like MCAS, histamine intolerance can be hard to diagnose even with blood and urine tests. Treatment for histamine intolerance focuses on avoiding histamine rich foods and alcohol or medications that block DAO or HNMT enzyme activity. Some people with histamine intolerance take DAO supplements to help the body break down histamine or take anti-histamines to control levels of histamine in the blood.38

MCAS and Autism Spectrum Disorder

Over the past decade, a number of reports and studies have linked Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) with immune dysregulation and chronic inflammation in the body, including in the brain.39 40 41  There is evidence that mast cell dysregulation is associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).42 43

Some researchers have suggested that the relationship between immune response and brain function may be negatively affected when toxins cross the blood brain barrier during a critical point in neural development, causing neurotoxicity and immune dysregulation that disrupts the natural neuron pruning process and contributes to the development of autism spectrum disorders. 44 If the immune system is dysregulated, it can affect the formation and necessary removal of physical connections between neurons that is critical to maintaining healthy brain cell function.45

ASD children have a higher rate of allergies (30%) compared to neurotypical children (2.5%). Tufts University Professor Theodore Theoharides, PhD, MD, who has conducted extensive research into mast cell disorders, has published a series of studies on the association between MCAS and autism. The evidence he has provided suggests that overactive mast cells in the brain and gut triggered by non-allergic stimulus can lead to brain inflammation and chronic brain dysfunction with symptoms diagnosed as autism. Evidence that mast cells play a role in ASD is also supported by the fact that the hypothalamus, which regulates behavior and language, houses the majority of mast cells in the brain and people with ASD often have problems associated with language and behavior.46

What Are Co-Factors for Developing MCAS?

Currently, MCAS is not considered to be a genetically inherited disease but there is evidence for epigenetic predisposition to development of MCAS as it tends to run in families, albeit with varying degrees of severity and presentations in individuals within the same family.47 Perinatal stress, environmental exposures, DNA methylation, somatic genetic mutations and interactions between microbiota and mast cells have been proposed as contributing co-factors.48 49 50

According to University of Minnesota Professor Lawrence Afrin, MD, an oncologist and leading mast cell authority, mast cell disease can present with different manifestations and outcomes for each person because every person is unique:

“Conveying a new understanding that all mast cell disease features inappropriate mast cell activation, the new top level mast cell activation disease (MCAD) encompasses various types of rare mastocytosis and likely prevalent mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS). The apparent uniqueness in each patient with MCAD of constitutively activating mutational patterns in KIT and other mast cell regulatory elements likely is the principal driver of not only the specific clinical presentation, and therapeutic response profile, in each patient but also the great heterogeneity across this population.”51  

Inflammation and Vaccination

When the immune system repeatedly mounts an inappropriate acute inflammatory response to antigens or non-allergic substances, it can lead to unwanted chronic inflammation in the body that is common to a number of immune and neuroimmune system disorders.52 53 Vaccination stimulates an inflammatory immune response that promotes production of antibodies and the acquisition of artificial active immunity.54 However, unlike naturally acquired immunity that involves a normal inflammatory response producing both innate (cellular) and humoral (adaptive) immunity, most vaccines manipulate the immune system in way that only stimulates production of vaccine strain antibodies and humoral immunity.55

Because vaccine acquired artificial immunity is temporary, many vaccines contain adjuvants, such as aluminum or squalene, to stimulate a strong inflammatory response in the body, which involves mast cell activation.56 There is mounting scientific evidence that when individuals cannot tolerate hyper-stimulation of the immune system, the atypical inflammatory response to vaccination can remain unresolved, become chronic, and lead to allergy and autoimmunity.57

Vaccines contain many ingredients, including chemicals, virus like protein particles and heavy metals, such as aluminum adjuvants and mercury (Thimerosal) preservatives, as well as other substances that can cause inflammation.58 59 Mercury can activate and destabilize mast cells,60 61 which disrupts the blood brain barrier and makes it easier for mercury to enter the brain where it can remain for long periods of time.62 Even a low concentration of mercury has been shown to activate mast cell mediators in the brain. Scientists have demonstrated that Thimerosal-derived ethylmercury is a mitochondrial toxin and may damage mitochondrial DNA.63

Polysorbate 80 is a chemical emulsifier added to some vaccines. Polysorbate 80 has the ability to help deliver substances across the protective blood brain barrier and into the brain.64 When toxins enter the brain, mast cells are activated and cause inflammation.65 Polysorbate 80 has also been shown to increase histamine levels in animal studies.66

The first vaccine found to cause acute and chronic brain inflammation (acute and chronic encephalopathy) and permanent brain dysfunction was smallpox vaccine created by Edward Jenner in 1796.67 The first vaccine found to cause acute and chronic encephalopathy with permanent brain dysfunction that ranged from learning disabilities and behavior disorders to profound mental retardation was whole cell pertussis vaccine licensed in 1915 and combined in 1949 with diphtheria and tetanus vaccine to create DPT vaccine.68 69 Whole cell pertussis vaccine ingredients include pertussis toxin, endotoxin, aluminum and mercury.70

Cases of pertussis vaccine-related brain inflammation followed by development of autism were first described in the book DPT: A Shot in the Dark published in 1985.71 72

Is Mast Cell Disease a Risk Factor for Vaccine Reactions?

Mast cells play an important part in keeping the body healthy, but when they malfunction, can cause system wide chronic inflammation in the body that interferes with quality of life or can even cause death.

Dr. Afrin recently related the story of a patient,

“who in the first year of his life had been perfectly normal and then, within hours of his first DTP vaccine at age one, developed into just a terrible multi-system inflammatory mess, including essentially acute onset autism.” When he was 20 years old, biopsies tested positive for mast cells. He was subsequently treated for MCAS with remarkable improvement.73

Most babies in the U.S. are being given 25 doses of nine different vaccines (or more) by their first birthday and can receive eight or more vaccines simultaneously.74 As mentioned previously, there are ingredients in vaccines that provoke inflammatory responses in the body that involve mast cell activation.75

Although for the past several decades, most pediatricians and public health officials have rejected the possibility of a relationship between vaccination and the development of allergic and autoimmune disorders,76 the apparent increase in mast cell dysregulation in highly vaccinated populations deserves more in-depth investigation.

The two outstanding questions are:

  • Does repeated atypical manipulation of the immune system with multiple vaccines in early life trigger MCAS or development of histamine intolerance in genetically or epigenetically predisposed individuals?
  • Are individuals with undiagnosed MCAS or histamine intolerance at greater risk for suffering vaccine reactions, particularly if they have a personal or family history of allergy or autoimmunity?
There is urgent need for more basic science research into how and why MCAS and histamine intolerance occurs and whether vaccination is a co-factor in increasing individual risks for mast cell dysregulation.

References:

1 Cáceres M. Should We Be Concerned About Vaccines Made in China? The Vaccine Reaction Apr. 3, 2016.
2 Buckley C. China’s Vaccine Scandal Threatens Public Faith in Immunizations? The  New York Times Apr.  18, 2016.
3 Qiu J, Hu H, Zhou S, Liu Q.  Vaccine scandal and crisis in public confidence in China. The Lancet 387(10036); 2382 June 11, 2016.
4 Xinhua China sentences man for illegal vaccine trade. Xinhuanet Feb. 20, 2018.
5 TVR Staff. DPT Vaccines Recalled in China. The Vaccine Reaction Nov. 30, 2017.
6 Yiwen C. China’s FDA Says 650,000 Vaccines Failed National Standards. Sixth Tone Nov. 6, 2017.
7 Hernández JC. In China, Vaccine Scandal Infuriates Parents and Tests Government. The New York Times July 23, 2018.
8 Bloomberg New and Associated Press. Bio-tech execs taken away by Chinese police after 250,000 doses of defective vaccine sold. National Post July 24, 2018.
9 Lo K. Changsheng Bio-tech, the vaccine maker behind China’s latest public health scare. South China Morning Post July 24, 2018.
10 Liu A. Chinese rabies vaccine maker ordered to stop production over forged data. Fierce Pharma July 17, 2018.
11 Meixler E. Outrage in China Over Latest Vaccine Safety Scandal. TIME July 23, 2018.
12 Jourdan A, Ruwitch J. China police probe vaccine maker after scandal sparks fury. Reuters July 22, 2018.
13 Strong treatment needed to remedy vaccine system: China Daily editorial. China Daily July 23, 2018.
14 Palmer E. China drug exports to U.S. rise but companies struggle with quality. Fierce Pharma Aug. 30, 2016.
15 Marsteller D. As drug making goes global, oversight found lackingUSA Today Oct. 21, 2012.