Archive for the ‘Supplements’ Category

What the FDA’s Actions Mean for Dietary Supplements

https://www.nytimes.com/aponline/2019/02/11/health/ap-us-med-dietary-supplements-qa.html?partner=IFTTT

What the FDA’s Actions Mean for Dietary Supplements

By The Associated Press

NEW YORK — The Food and Drug Administration announced plans Monday to step up its policing of dietary supplements, which it said has mushroomed into a $40 billion industry with more than 50,000 products. The agency warned 17 companies for illegally making claims about their products’ ability to treat diseases.

Here’s a look at what the FDA’s announcement means:

Q: How are dietary supplements regulated?

A: Dietary supplements, including vitamins, are regulated more like foods than drugs. They can make claims similar to what’s found on cereals or snack bars such as “calcium builds strong bones.” But they can’t contain drug ingredients or make claims about treating diseases like Alzheimer’s, cancer or diabetes.

Q: Does the FDA plan to change that rule?

A: No. FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said the agency isn’t questioning what’s permitted under the dietary supplements law of 1994. He said dietary supplements are regulated like foods because they pose less of a risk than drugs.

“Nothing in what we’re doing would try to attempt to re-contemplate” the existing standard, he said.

Instead, the agency is addressing criticism that it hasn’t enforced rules prohibiting supplements from containing drugs or being marketed like them. Gottlieb said the risk posed by such illegal products has grown with the industry.

The FDA’s dietary supplements review group has 23 employees, he said, and is planning more oversight on products that make illegal health claims.

Q: What about supplements that don’t make disease claims?

A: Qualified health claims on dietary supplements may lead people to think they’re more effective than they are, said Peter Lurie, a former FDA official who now heads the Center for Science in the Public Interest. Lurie noted the FDA doesn’t review such claims before they’re marketed.

“It’s very hard to take on this industry comprehensively when the law shackles the agency to the extent that it does,” he said.

Dr. Pieter Cohen, an associate professor at Harvard Medical School, said dietary supplements are unnecessary for most people unless a doctor recommends them for a specific reason. He noted there are exceptions, such as women who may be planning to become pregnant.

Q: Is the FDA considering any changes to the rules for supplements?

A: The FDA is still figuring out exactly how it might tighten oversight, but one possibility is a mandatory database for dietary supplements to improve transparency and make enforcement easier. It also said it’s developing a way to more quickly and consistently alert people about supplements that might have illegal ingredients.

The dietary supplements industry group, the Council for Responsible Nutrition, said it looked forward to working with the FDA, and praised Gottlieb for “rooting out bad actors.”

The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

__________________

**Comment**

I take issue with Dr. Cohen’s unsubstantiated statement that dietary supplements are unnecessary for most people.  How do you even prove that?  Patients with Lyme/MSIDS find through blood tests they are often low in magnesium, hormones, and other crucial things.  These important substances control thousands of chemical reactions in the human body.  Without them we suffer.  With them we improve.

The proof is in the pudding.

 

 

The Endocannabinoid System and the Important Role It Plays in Human Health

https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2019/02/10/endocannabinoid-system-role-in-human-health.aspx?

Published on Feb 5, 2019

Natural health expert and Mercola.com founder Dr. Joseph Mercola interviews Carl Germano, a board-certified nutritionist and phytocannabiniods expert, on how the endocannabinoid system influences human health.
February 10, 2019
By Dr. Mercola

STORY AT-A-GLANCE

  • Cannabinoid receptors in the human body were discovered in the 1990s, which in turn led to the realization that we make compounds in our body — endogenous cannabinoids — that influence these receptors
  • Endocannabinoid deficiency has been identified in people who have migraines, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory and neurological conditions and a variety of treatment-resistant conditions
  • While CBD has gained the most attention, CBD alone cannot fully support your body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). You need the other phytocannabinoids and terpenes as well
  • Hemp has been outlawed in the U.S. since 1938. The latest Farm Bill, signed into law at the end of 2018, makes it legal again; hemp oil with full-spectrum phytocannabinoids may benefit a wide range of health problems
  • There’s an intimate relationship between your ECS and your omega-3 status. Omega-3 fats make your cannabinoid receptors more active, and are used as backbone structures to produce cannabinoids in your body

Hemp has been outlawed in the U.S. since 1938. Thankfully, the latest Farm Bill signed into law at the end of 2018 makes it legal. In this interview, board-certified clinical nutritionist and expert on phytocannabinoids, Carl Germano, discusses the exciting implications of this change.

Now, there’s a difference between cannabidiol (CBD) products made from hemp and those made from marijuana. While many mistakenly believe hemp and marijuana are interchangeable, they’re actually two different plants.

“Both are considered Cannabis sativa by genus and species, but that’s where the similarity ends,” Germano explains. “Hemp has been cultivated for many reasons for the past few thousand years — food, clothing, fiber and fuel. The plant itself contains naturally occurring active compounds called phytocannabinoids, of which CBD is just one of them.

Marijuana, on the other hand, has been cultivated for its primary phytocannabinoid, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). While it has recreational value at small levels, it does have medicinal value.

Nevertheless, many decades ago, hemp got dumped into the definition of marijuana. Hemp was unjustly placed into the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), which kind of hampered its access, its ability to have U.S. farmers grow it, or to have even medical or academic institutions study it.

We’ve been in the Dark Ages for decades. Thanks to Israel and Europe, who’ve championed all the research, we’ve [discovered] the cannabinoid system in the body called the Endocannabinoid System (ECS).

Trump did sign a Farm Bill that finally deregulates hemp. It takes it out of the CSA … It gives the rights of farmers to grow it. It will open up the doors for academic and medical institutions to study it. It will give consumers access to [what is] probably the most important botanical we have on this planet.”

Why Whole Hemp May Be Better Than Isolated CBD

The hemp plant contains over 100 different phytocannabinoids, of which CBD is one. And while hemp has now been taken off the CSA, CBD is still under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which is responsible for the labeling of supplements and enforcing the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA).

“With the passage of the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA), you have several things against CBD. First, CBD was not in commerce prior to 1994, so it could not be grandfathered as a dietary supplement, yet hemp oil has been in commerce prior to 1994, so we’re OK there.

Secondly, DSHEA states that if you want to submit a new dietary ingredient application, you can do so and petition the FDA for an ingredient to be classified as a dietary supplement.

Well, if you were to do that today, you would get rejected immediately because the other part of DSHEA states that if Big Pharma takes a natural ingredient and makes a drug that gets approved, it’s hands-off to the dietary supplement industry.

GW Pharmaceuticals has two drugs using isolated purified CBD in it. Therefore, we’ve got several strikes against putting CBD on the front panel, calling it a dietary supplement, and I say, why bother? Because the story is much bigger than CBD, both clinically, scientifically and legally.”

Hemp oil is a food that happens to have CBD in it. But while CBD may not be legally advertised on the label, CBD-containing hemp products can be labeled as having phytocannabinoids — the class of compounds to which CBD belongs. While CBD has gained the most attention, CBD alone cannot fully support your body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). You need the other phytocannabinoids and terpenes, which are very complementary to the phytocannabinoids, as well.

“Those of us in botanical medicine understand that the sum of all the parts of the plant is greater than any one single ingredient,”Germano says. “Let’s face it. There’s more than one ginsenoside in ginseng. There’s more than one curcuminoid in curcumin. There’s more than one isobutylamide in Echinacea. There’s more than one ginkgolide in ginkgo.

Well, there’s more than just one phytocannabinoid in hemp. Back in 2011, Dr. Ethan Russo in the British Journal of Pharmacology1 … wrote about the entourage effect of all the phytocannabinoids and terpenes needing to be present to give rise to full clinical, meaningful benefit …

While CBD may be the most dominant phytocannabinoid in hemp, the others are there in minor in number, but they are not minor in the body as they all participate in nourishing, supporting the ECS, which is the bigger story.”

Understanding Your ECS

While the discovery of the ECS is fairly recent, genetically it dates back over 600 million years.2Cannabinoid receptors in the human body were discovered in the 1990s, which in turn led to the realization that we make compounds in our body — endogenous cannabinoids — that influence these receptors.

It was also discovered that the ECS orchestrates communication between other bodily systems, such as your respiratory, digestive, immune and cardiovascular systems. The ECS does this via receptors found in every organ, including your skin.

“Your ECS is like the conductor of the orchestra. The orchestra are our organ systems. We cannot be healthy, we cannot be well if our ECS does not function well,” Germano says.

“Your body produces cannabinoids similar structurally to the cannabinoids found in cannabis. Your body feeds off of them. If you don’t produce enough to feed every single receptor, various conditions and various illnesses will ensue.”

Two Types of Endocannabinoid Receptors Have Been Identified

There are two primary ECS receptors: cannabinoid receptor type 1 (CB1) and cannabinoid receptor type 2 (CB2). While CB1 is typically thought of as being primarily in the brain and CB2 primarily in the immune system, both types of receptors are in fact found throughout your body.

One of the two cannabinoids your body produces is called anandamide — a nod to the word “ananda,” the Sanskrit word for “bliss,” as it attaches to the same CB1 receptors that THC attaches to. The other, 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG), is found throughout your body.

“The ECS has been the subject of many scholarly textbooks … Quite frankly, this is something that should be taught from high school to college to medical school. Unfortunately, because of the stigma attached to cannabinoids … less than 13 percent [of medical schools in the U.S.] are teaching the ECS.

I say, ‘Are you insane? This is like saying that for the next 70 years we will not teach the cardiovascular system, as if it never existed.’ We now have to dismantle this medical travesty … The whole thing is about education. This is critical and crucial to our health and well-being.

We have to dismantle the stigma, and we have to start educating ourselves to understand that the ECS is probably one of the most important medical discoveries in quite some time. Understanding the enormity of this system and what it does and what it influences throughout the entire human body.”

Low Endocannabinoid Levels Result in Ill Health

With age, our bodies tend to become less efficient in creating the compounds needed for optimal health, and this holds true for anandamide and 2-AG as well. According to Germano, these two cannabinoids can actually be used as biological markers for certain illnesses and conditions.

Endocannabinoid deficiency has been identified in people who have migraines, fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory and neurological conditions and a variety of treatment-resistant conditions. Germano also cites a paper3 in Translational Psychiatry, which found low anandamide levels are a statistically positive indicator for stress-induced anxiety.

They’ve also discovered there’s an intimate relationship between your ECS and your omega-3 status.4As it turns out, omega-3 fats make your cannabinoid receptors more active, and are used as backbone structures to produce cannabinoids in your body.

What do we see in people who have low omega-3 status? We see the same things we see in people who are endocannabinoid deficient: pain, inflammation, stress, anxiety, depression and so on. It is a perfect marriage between omega-3s and phytocannabinoids, which act like a multivitamin for the ECS.

But it doesn’t stop there. Look at bones … the reason we give post-menopausal women estrogen is because it influences the cells that build up bone, osteoblasts, and the cells that break down bone, osteoclasts. What does this have to do with the ECS?

We now know that if you stimulate the CB1 receptors, you start to stimulate the brain-to-bone communication by slowing down the brain from releasing bone-breaking compounds, like norepinephrine. Then when you stimulate the CB2 receptors, it increases osteoblasts, the bone makers, and decreases osteoclasts, the bone breakers.”

Top conditions associated with low cannabinoid levels include:
  • Pain, inflammation and inflammatory conditions
  • Stress, anxiety and insomnia
  • Ocular health
  • Bone health
  • Neurological conditions

“These are all conditions that can be suitably treated with phytocannabinoids,” Germano says. “These are conditions that we see in people who are endocannabinoid-deficient.”

Running Dramatically Boosts Anandamide Level

While runner’s high is typically attributed to the release of endorphins, running also dramatically increases anandamide in the body, and anandamide not only targets the CB1 receptor, but it also influences opioid and endorphin receptors. Not surprisingly then, the higher an individual’s anandamide level, the better they report feeling.

“That makes sense, because anandamide hits the receptors in the brain that are involved in reward and mood,” Germano says. “We also understand that the cannabinoids we produce are quite promiscuous.

They certainly touch the CB1 and CB2 receptors, but they [affect] other receptors as well, [such as] the 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT3) receptors, peroxisome proliferator-activated receptors (PPAR), gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) receptors, and receptors that control inflammation, pain, reward, anxiety and things of that nature.”

A paper5 published in PLOS ONE also details how various nutrients (such as omega-3 fats), drugs, exercise, chiropractic care, massage and acupuncture influence the function of your ECS.

Your Endocannabinoid System — A Key Player in Inflammation

Curcumin, boswellia, fish oil and quercetin are all well-recognized anti-inflammatory nutrients, but none can compare to what cannabinoids can do, Germano says, especially when the full spectrum is used.

As noted in a 2014 paper6 in Current Opinions in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care, the ECS is an emerging key player in inflammation, because it’s intertwined with all of the inflammatory pathways, including the eicosanoid ones that omega-3 fish oils influence.

Germano also cites other research showing that targeting the ECS can ease both inflammatory and neuropathic pain, and describe how cannabinoids act as analgesics. According to Germano:

“You cannot contend with any inflammatory condition unless you’re supporting the ECS. They can be used interchangeably; phytocannabinoids along with curcumin and boswellia and fish oils would be remarkable, as they are complementary to each other by doing different things.

Again, we must address the ECS in any inflammatory condition, whether it be irritable bowel syndrome or injuries — even inflammation in the brain, which is one of the hallmarks of all neurological diseases. In 2003, the United States government got issued a patent on the neuroprotective effects of cannabinoids.

At that time, while the government has been telling us that phytocannabinoids are like lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and heroin — [meaning they] have no medical value — they go out and get a patent on the medical value.

But that was followed up, and there are many papers that talk all about the anti-inflammatory effects in the brain and in the nervous system, of these cannabinoids … There is nothing else like supporting the ECS with phytocannabinoids.”

Your Endocannabinoid System Also Plays a Key Role in Your Gut Health

You’re probably familiar with the fact that there’s a strong connection between not only your brain and your gut, but also your immune system. The importance of this triad in health and disease prevention cannot be overstated. Your gut not only is your largest immune organ, it’s also your second brain, containing hundreds of millions of neurons.

“We now understand how the gut is involved with communicating with the brain and the immune system, because it has brain cells and immune cells in it,” Germano says. In the middle of this trio is your ECS. It is actually the orchestrator of this tri-directional communication. According to Germano, researchers have also discovered the ECS controls:

  • Motility in the gut
  • Intestinal inflammation
  • Abdominal pain
  • Gut permeability
  • Tolerance to antigens

The ECS also reduces the activity of the stress pathways, including the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) pathways. Anandamide, specifically, participates in the immunological response in the gut. What’s more, there’s also communication occurring between your endocannabinoid system and your gut microbiome (the bacteria in your gut).

Clinical Applications for Hemp Products

Again, a full-spectrum oil is actually far preferable to product in which CBD has been isolated. Germano cites a 2015 Israeli paper, which compared full-spectrum oil against isolated CBD, and found the full-spectrum oil was in fact clinically superior.

As for dosing, most of the literature demonstrates efficacy of CBD in the several hundred milligram range — but that is for “single magic bullet” isolated CBD. Preclinical studies and any clinicians are reporting that efficacy can be achieved with much lower doses when using a ful spectrum oil — some in the 10 to 25mg CBD range.

“Since CBD is the most dominant cannabinoid in hemp, when you extract oil from hemp, you do have much, much higher levels of CBD naturally in the oil as compared to the rest of the phytocannabinoid family. Providing 10 to 25 mg of CBD is the sweet spot for most conditions in the trade — especially when used with other synergistic ingredients …

People are responding quite remarkably, which [suggests] you don’t need a lot to jump-start the body’s ECS. Quite frankly, when we look at the bell-shaped curve with the isolates, the higher the dose, sometimes you decrease the effectiveness … When you use a full-spectrum oil and you’re getting the other important phytocannabinoid and terpene components, this is superior, and I’ll tell you why.

People have been focusing on CBD, which is the wrong message. It’s the myopic message. Think about it, CBD does not attach to the CB1 or CB2 receptors. If anything, CBD supports the CB1 receptors by preventing the breakdown of anandamide in our bodies and anandamide hits the CB1 receptor.

What about the CB2 receptor that controls inflammatory cycling, pain signaling, insulin sensitivity and bone building? CBD does nothing for that, so we need something of a CB2 agonist. A perfect partner to CBD would be another phytocannabinoid called beta caryophyllene. Luckily, the family of other phytocannabinoids in a full-spectrum oil contains other phytocannabinoids that complement to what CBD is not doing as well.

We must get off this single magic bullet bandwagon. We must appreciate the full gamut of all these phytocannabinoids as a whole, and that they complement each other, because CBD is not the answer to support the ECS as a whole.”

As with most things, too much can backfire. While CBD cannot kill you, using CBD isolate in too high amounts can reduce its effectiveness. Such problems are far less likely when using a full-spectrum oil.

“I don’t foresee anybody really overdosing on the standard dosages that we’re recommending,” Germano says. “Nor when we look at the data that’s been published, up to 1,500 mg of CBD chronically administered over time show that it was well-tolerated, minimal to no adverse reactions on physiological function, psychological functioning and other parameters in the body, including blood pressure. So, CBD is quite well-tolerated in humans.”

Hemp Oil for Sleep

Aside from inflammation and pain, another area where a full-spectrum hemp oil can be beneficial is to improve sleep and treat insomnia. Germano recommends using a full-spectrum oil in a dose that provides 25 mg of CBD.

“CBD at that range does a number of things. No. 1, it reduces excitability in the brain. It can reduce glutamate toxicity and any excitatory conditioning. Secondly, CBD is involved in various neurotransmitters that are involved with a normal sleep cycle.

While it has a calming effect and helps to establish a normal sleep cycle, it’s not necessarily a sedative. You can use it with melatonin. You can use it with lavender. You can use it with chamomile and passionflower, what have you. I would do that towards the latter part of the day, at least an hour or two before bedtime. Lower doses of CBD are more stimulating, so to speak, and more upregulating.”

How the New Law Can Improve Quality of Hemp Products

In the past, prior to the signing of the new Farm Bill, the leaf, flower and bud of the hemp plant could not be used in the production of CBD-rich hemp oil. The oil had to be pulled from the stalk and stem of the plant only — the less concentrated part. With the new law, all parts of the plant can be used, which will make processing easier and more economical, as the cannabinoids are more concentrated in the leaves, flowers and buds.

The law also makes it legal to grow hemp in in every state, so if you wanted to, you could grow it in your backyard. This is something I’m definitely considering, as you can easily juice the whole plant or add it to smoothies.

“Growing it for yourself would be wonderful,” Germano says. “It is a weed. It has a short period of harvest. It grows very rapidly — July, August and September. Yes, the whole plant can be used rather than just extracting the oils from it. All the phytocannabinoids and lipids are found in the oils, but the leaf can be juiced and put into smoothies as well …

In terms of growing and processing it, it’s a rather easy plant to grow, because it is a weed. When we talk about the raw plant, a lot of these cannabinoids are in their acidic form. CBD is in CBDA, cannabidiol acid, form. To convert it to its useable form, the acid has to be decarboxylated.

So, while you may benefit from a lot of the phytocannabinoids [in the raw plant], it’s going to be reliant on your body’s ability to process it from the acidic forms that are in there. Exposure to heat, light, moisture and air will decarboxylate a lot of them as well. The more you process it yourself, the more useable some of those phytocannabinoids will be.

[To process it], you can take the leaf, flower and bud. You can blend it and store it in the refrigerator. Over a day or two of exposure to heat, air, light and moisture, it’ll decarboxylate to some extent and you’ll benefit more from that. How much do you get? Appreciable amounts of CBD may be difficult with just juicing alone …

I don’t want to misquote myself and say the wrong thing, but probably an ounce or two [of raw plant] would do the trick as a healthy plant beverage. Again, you don’t need a lot to jump-start your body’s ECS. It’s not a numbers game. Small doses, you would definitely respond to.”

How to Identify a High-Quality Hemp Product

If you’re not growing your own, attributes to look for when shopping for a hemp product include:

Organic Kosher-certified
Non-GMO Verified pesticide and herbicide free
Full-spectrum phytocannabinoids Grown from certified seeds and not hybrids with marijuana

“I look for companies that are doing the right thing also. That is, they don’t mention CBD on the front panel or quantify it in the Supplement Fact box. Responsible companies talk about phytocannabinoids,” Germano says.

They talk about hemp oil. They talk about nourishing the endocannabinoid system. This is a superior story to just CBD. Those are the more reputable companies that are telling the right story, [and not just talking about] isolated CBD.”

More Information About Endocannabinoid System

Germano has written a book about the endocannabinoid system called, “Road to Ananda: The Simple Guide to the Endocannabinoid System, Phytocannabinoids and Hemp,” (www.roadtoananda.com) which is due out shortly. I am very proud to have written the forward to this book as it is a great resource. Definitely pick up a copy if you want to learn more about this fascinating topic.

“I’m ecstatic to announce that the person who wrote the introduction to the book is Raphael Mechoulam, the father of cannabinoid research and who was involved in the discovery of the endocannabinoid system.

He is well-known in the scholarly circles. There are certainly plenty of scholarly work out there, but we need to get this message, this story, which is enormous, out to the layman and practitioner out there who is really unaware still,” Germano says.

“I’ve been in this industry for over 35 years. I’m a clinical nutritionist by trade. I have not seen any natural compounds this clinically relevant since the inception of this industry. I can tell you that targeting the endocannabinoid system, supporting it, will dominate medicine and nutrition of the next couple of decades.

There are also topical applications for phytocannabinoids, because, again, our skin is one of our largest organs. It also has five to 10 times more cannabinoids in it than we have in our brain. The CB1 and CB2 receptors are there as well.

There are three targeted areas for topical applications. One, obviously, is pain and inflammation, because the CB2 receptors are there that control that. That is something that will blow away any of these compounds in the marketplace today for topical pain relief.

Then we know that certain cannabinoids strangle the sebaceous gland for acne. Certain cannabinoids also influence age spot development and antiaging. [There are] some very interesting things going on in the topical application area.

When we look at the global picture of what is the subcutaneous endocannabinoid system doing, it’s helping to maintain normal cell proliferation, differentiation and immune competence. Oncologists are going to be interested in that aspect.”

_________________

**Comment**

If you are a Lyme/MSIDS patient you should see yourself ALL over this article.  We struggle with pain, inflammation, gut issues (motility, permeability, antigen tolerance, pain/inflammation), neurological issues, & insomnia.  Many experience ocular & bone issues as well.  It will be interesting to observe the topical applications of this since so many have pain.

It’s quite amazing that our government has gotten away with pigeon-holing this wonderful plant into the same category as heroin and marijuana for decades.  Hopefully, we will see pricing begin to fall as currently, cost is high.

The article, and indeed everything I’ve read, stresses that full-spectrum CBD is crucial.

For more:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/02/09/webinar-cbd-craze-health-or-hype/

My entire family has found CBD oil to help with both sleep and pain.  I give the brand we’ve had success with here:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/01/16/ldn-cbd/  (I am not affiliated with ANY companies).  It is potent.  The company has other strengths as well.

Which Herbs For Inflammation?

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/324368.php?

Which herbs help reduce inflammation?

Many herbal remedies could have anti-inflammatory properties. However, the evidence to support the majority of these claims is lacking. Inflammation is the body’s primary defense mechanism against infections, wounds, and other forms of harm.

However, inflammation itself can be harmful in some cases. For example, many conditions can cause inflammation to remain elevated, resulting in tissue damage.

A range of anti-inflammatory drugs exist to help control inflammation in the body. However, they often have side effects and may not always be effective.

Natural compounds that are present in certain herbal remedies also have the potential to be anti-inflammatory. However, there is much less research in this area.

This article will list herbal remedies with the most evidence for their anti-inflammatory properties.

Turmeric

Anti inflammatory herbs

 

Turmeric typically comes in the form of a yellow powder from the root of the turmeric plant.

It contains a chemical called curcumin, which may have anti-inflammatory properties.

Several studies have shown that turmeric can help reduce inflammation and discomfort in people with arthritis.

It works by limiting the production of molecules called cytokines, which cause inflammation.

Researchers continue to investigate how curcumin affects inflammation in a range of other conditions, such as inflammatory bowel disease. Curcumin has the most substantial evidence base for its anti-inflammatory effects compared with other herbal remedies.

Turmeric is available in the form of capsules, tablets, teas, pastes, and extracts. Methods of taking turmeric will vary, depending on the intended use.

Ginger

Ginger, or Zingiber officinale, is a tropical plant that has long had a place in traditional medicines.

Ginger may have anti-inflammatory properties. There is evidence showing that many of ginger’s constituents can limit the production of cytokines and the activity of cyclooxygenase enzymes, which promote inflammation.

Research has found that the anti-inflammatory properties of ginger could be useful in treating several conditions, including arthritis and pain.

Ginger can be fresh or a dried root. It can also come in the form of tablets, capsules, and teas.

Green tea

Anti inflammatory herbs green tea

Green tea comes from Camellia sinensis leaves. Research has linked it to a variety of health benefits, such as aiding weight loss.

Green tea has anti-inflammatory properties that could underlie some of these specific health benefits.

For example, there is evidence to suggest that a component of green tea could disrupt processes that cause inflammation in the arthritis.

Other studies have found that green tea can have a positive effect on inflammation in people with metabolic disorders. Researchers suggest that it may drive these anti-inflammatory effects.

Green tea typically comes as a hot or cold drink. It is also possible to buy capsules, tablets, and creams that contain green tea.

Many other herbal remedies may also have anti-inflammatory properties. Examples include:

  • thyme
  • white willow bark
  • frankincense
  • resveratrol

However, there is not much research available on these remedies. Without this research, it is not possible to say with certainty whether these anti-inflammatory effects exist, or if they are effective treatment options for people with inflammatory conditions.

While a greater evidence base exists for the remedies in this article, the research in this area is still in the early stages.

For example, scientists have conducted many studies into the anti-inflammatory benefits of turmeric. However, the quality of these studies is not high enough to support the claim that turmeric can effectively reduce inflammation in humans.

It is also important to remember that studies in this area tend to use highly concentrated forms of these herbal remedies.

In some cases, certain compounds are isolated. One example of this is curcumin from turmeric. This means that the effects may differ when taking different forms of the remedy.

Risks

Anti inflammatory herbs doctor

  • gastrointestinal problems
  • liver problems
  • abdominal discomfort
  • heartburn
  • diarrhea
  • gas
  • sleep problems

It is also possible for these herbal remedies to interact with certain medications. For example, green tea can interact with certain beta-blockers such as nadolol.

It is important to discuss any herbal remedies with a doctor, who can advise further on drug interactions that may occur.

Summary

There is some evidence to support the claim that turmeric, green tea, and ginger have anti-inflammatory properties.

For people with inflammatory health conditions, consuming these herbal remedies could be useful for reducing inflammation.

However, more high-quality research will be necessary to confirm these effects. These herbal remedies are generally safe, but it is important to consult a doctor before taking them in conjunction with other types of medication.

_________________
Both DMSO & MSM are anti-inflammatory.  This in depth article explains their many uses – with recipes as well.
Both LDN and CBD are anti-inflammatory.

Lyme & Herxheimer Reactions – Dr. Rawls

https://rawlsmd.com/health-articles/lyme-herxheimer-reactions-your-guide-to-feeling-good-again?

lyme-disease-and-herxiemer-reactions

Lyme + Herxheimer Reactions: Your Guide To Feeling Good Again

by Carin Gorrell & Dr. Bill Rawls
Updated 1/21/19

It’s one of life’s cruel jokes: You discover a new therapy for Lyme disease and are really optimistic about your odds of finally feeling better. Then, within a day or two of starting the regimen, your symptoms take a turn for the worse—intense fatigue washes over you, and you feel like you did during your last fight with the flu. Could it be the dreaded Herxheimer Reaction you keep hearing about from fellow Lyme sufferers?

Unfortunately, answering that question is no easy feat. So we asked Dr. Bill Rawls, author of the bestselling book Unlocking Lyme, to help explain Herx Reactions and the best ways to differentiate them from other possible issues. Keep reading for his advice, plus steps you can take now to feel better—without derailing your recovery.

Herxheimer Reactions, Defined

Herxing was first observed in syphilis patients by dermatologists Adolf Jarisch and Karl Herxheimer in the late 1800s and early 1900s, who noticed that sufferers receiving treatment often got worse before they got better. The phenomenon was dubbed the Jarisch-Herxheimer Reaction, and has since been shortened to Herxheimer Reaction or simply, herxing.

“The classic explanation of a Herxheimer Reaction in Lyme sufferers is that when Borrelia bacteria are killed off by an antibiotic or herbal therapy, parts of dead bacteria called endotoxins are shed,” explains Dr. Rawls. “These endotoxins then circulate throughout the body and cause an intense whole-body inflammatory reaction. And that makes the war against microbes that’s already going on inside your body worse.”

In general, Herx Reactions are more common and more intense with conventional antibiotic use than with use of herbs, says Dr. Rawls. “With herbs, the bacterial die‐off is more gradual and the immune response is less intense.”

Either way, the intensification of your symptoms can be disconcerting, and if you’re treating Lyme, the odds are good you’ll experience herxing: While there’s no clinical research on the prevalence of herxing, anecdotally it seems the majority of Lyme sufferers experience it at some point. And that’s actually good news: “It’s often a sign that the therapy is working,” says Dr. Rawls.

How To Tell If It’s Herxing—Or Something Else

Herx Reactions can feel like a red herring, for a few reasons.

For starters, symptoms vary from person to person, says Dr. Rawls, and they’re easy to confuse with other health concerns that are also highly likely in chronic Lyme sufferers, including a disease flare-up, adverse reaction to a new Lyme treatment, or food sensitivity (digestive issues are highly common in Lyme sufferers). What’s more, the timing of any of these issues can also overlap, making it difficult to track your symptoms to their source.

For help clearing up the confusion and determining what’s to blame for your symptoms, check out these helpful identifying characteristics from Dr. Rawls:

HERX REACTION

Symptoms: Intensified fatigue, muscle pain, and flu‐like symptoms such as headache, nausea, GI distress. You may also experience symptoms not listed here; Herx Reactions are highly variable between individuals.

Onset: Symptoms intensify in tandem with starting a new therapy.

Telltale signs: Symptoms may gradually improve with continuation of therapy, and worsen again when you increase the dosage or add a new therapy.

LYME FLARE-UP

Symptoms: Intensification of fatigue, arthritis (joint pain, swelling, and stiffness), flu-like feelings, GI distress, recurrence of your usual Lyme symptoms

Onset: Symptoms are often precipitated by any type of extra stress to your system (including emotional stress, poor diet, toxin exposure, physical stress, lack of sleep, or a new tick bite). Symptoms are not related to starting a new therapy, though the two may coincide if you experienced stress just before starting the therapy.

Telltale signs: Your best clue is timing: A Lyme relapse typically occurs while taking a stable dose of treatment and in reaction to some type of stress, so look for recent lifestyle changes (i.e., diet changes, travel, sleep deprivation, relationships trouble).

ADVERSE TREATMENT REACTION

Symptoms: An allergic-like reaction (hives, itching, skin rash, runny nose, watery eyes, wheezing). This is common in people with chronic Lyme disease, whose entire immune system is in disarray and more easily activated.

Onset: Symptoms develop within about an hour of taking a new medication or herb

Telltale signs: Your symptoms get better when you take an allergy remedy such as an antihistamine. *See your doctor as soon as possible if you experience signs or symptoms of a drug allergy. Call 911 if you experience signs of a severe reaction or suspect an anaphylaxis after taking a medication.

FOOD SENSITIVITY

Symptoms: Fatigue, joint pain, muscle pain, general achiness, brain fog, irritability

Onset: Symptoms occur within hours to a couple of days after an offending food is consumed.

Telltale signs: Your symptoms get better when you eliminate the food(s) from your diet. Doctors can order testing for food sensitivity and heavy metal toxicity, however the best determinant of food sensitivities is an elimination diet.

If these guidelines don’t describe your experience with herxing exactly, take heart. In the beginning, you may go back and forth between knowing whether what you’re experiencing is Herx Reaction or something else, but with time, you will become better at distinguishing herxing and riding it out.

It’s Herxing. When Will It End?

If you’ve determined (or strongly suspect) that you’re herxing, your next question is likely: How long will it last?

Unfortunately, there’s no cut-and-dry answer — everyone’s experience is individual, says Dr. Rawls. Some may feel better after a few days or a few weeks; others may experience herxing for as long as two to three months (though symptoms tend to wax and wane throughout that time).

The good news is, there’s a lot you can do to help ease a Herx Reaction and move beyond the symptoms more quickly. The quickest solution would be to discontinue your Lyme treatment. But that’s not necessarily the best solution, says Dr. Rawls.

“Fundamental advice with herx is to continue therapy at whatever dose you can tolerate. Sometimes you will have to reduce the dose to stay comfortable, but you can increase again later” says Dr. Rawls. “If your symptoms improve over days to a couple of weeks, that suggests confirmation that it’s a herx.And as your symptoms improve, you can gradually increase the dose until the desired therapeutic dose is reached.”

If your symptoms do not improve, it may be an indication that the therapy is not working. In this case, Dr. Rawls suggests either increasing the dose or adding other herbs or other therapy. If symptoms gradually start getting better, then you know you’re on the right track.

That said, if your symptoms are debilitating, back off on your treatment dosage or even stop altogether, advises Dr. Rawls. Then, once your symptoms are tolerable, you can gradually increase your dosage again.

Smart Ways to Ease Herxing

The number one way to find relief from herxing is to address the underlying cause for needing Lyme treatment in the first place: chronic immune dysfunction.

“An impaired immune system is what makes people vulnerable to chronic Lyme,” explains Dr. Rawls. “Restore your immune function, and not only will your body be better at battling Lyme microbes, it’ll be stronger at withstanding the side effects of treatment and overcoming herxing as well.”

To begin, work your way through what Dr. Rawls calls System Disruptors, factors that can contribute to inflammation and intensify either a Herx reaction or a Lyme relapse. These include poor nutrition, emotional stress, environmental toxins like air pollutants and mold, physical stress, and excessive exposure to radiation from modern sources like computers, cell phones, and microwave towers.

Once you’ve begun to take the pressure off of your immune system by decreasing your exposure to these disruptors, your body will be better equipped to handle both microbes and the endotoxins they create as they begin to die off. The result: You start to feel better.

From here, there are a number of additional lifestyle habits you can adopt to help alleviate a Herxheimer Reaction—all of which also contribute to restoring immune function and thus contribute to Lyme recovery, says Dr. Rawls. Here, his recommendations:

1. Hydrate with fresh ginger tea.

A lot of liquids in general is a good idea, but fresh ginger tea in particular has potent systemic anti-inflammatory properties for reducing Herxheimer symptoms.

2. Add some natural therapies to your regimen.

Some good ones to try:

  • Turmeric and Boswellia They’re excellent for reducing systemic inflammation associated with Herxheimer reactions, and it’s hard to take too much of either. Dr. Rawls recommends 175 mg of turmeric and 75 mg of Boswellia, twice a day for each.
  • Marine source omega-3 fatty acids They offer anti-inflammatory support, especially for high-fat tissues such as the brain. Both fish oil and krill oil reduce inflammation, but krill is better absorbed and also contains the antioxidant astaxanthin, which provides extra anti-inflammatory support. The suggested dose for krill oil is 500 mg, 1-3 times daily.
  • Red Root This herb is very good for stimulating clearing dead cellular debris from the lymphatic system. It also supports a healthy liver and spleen, optimal immune function, and swollen lymph nodes.
  • Chlorella Consistently taking this freshwater algae does wonders for healing an irritated stomach and restoring digestive function. It’s also great for detoxing and healing in general. The typical maintenance dose is 5 to 7.5g total a day. For additional support, we suggest 10g total a day. Chlorella can be taken any time of day. For best results, take with food. (Avoid products that also contain spirulina, a blue-green algae that potentially contains toxins.)
  • Adaptogenic herbs. These help reduce herxing and moderate the effects of stress. Some to try: Chinese skullcap (450 mg, twice a day), Cordyceps(450 mg, twice a day), Reishi mushroom (175 mg, twice a day), and Rehmannia (50 mg, twice a day).

3. Take enzymes.

There are a variety that will work to help break down immune complexes and reduce inflammation. Bromelain (from pineapple) is a good choice; the dose is 500-1000 mg, one to two times daily. It’s sometimes found in combination supplements for joint health. In general, it’s best to take enzymes on an empty stomach so they are absorbed directly.

4. Apply heat.

Heat can be very soothing during Herx reactions. A far infrared (FIR) sauna and/or a hot bath are excellent for removing toxins from the body. Adding Epsom salts to your bath can also help soothe muscles and joints.

5. Get outside and breathe fresh air.

Forests and beaches or shores alongside open water are especially beneficial. Take your shoes off and walk barefoot: called “grounding,” it’s a good practice for reducing inflammation in the body.

6. Relax.

Decreasing stress is key to normalizing the body’s adrenaline/cortisol response. Some ideas:

  • Meditate
  • Get a massage, or try abhyanga (the Ayurvedic practice of self-massage)
  • Practice Qigong or yoga
  • Try acupuncture or energy healing

7. Sleep.

Make 7-8 hours of shuteye a nightly goal.

8. Say “no” more often.

Only agree to doing what’s necessary, and let the rest go until you are back on your feet.

9. Avoid coffee and green and black tea.

They tend to dry and irritate the stomach lining.

10. Eat steamed cabbage.

It’s great for soothing an inflamed stomach.

11. Use lavender essential oil.

Research suggests it may be beneficial for easing insomnia, anxiety, stress, and postoperative pain. Apply it to the bottom of your feet before bed to help with sleep.

12. Laugh lots.

It raises your immune system and just makes you feel good.

Thoughts on Herx Prevention

There’s a decent chance that if you increase the dosage of your current treatment or introduce a new one to your Lyme regimen, the herxing may return. It’s not entirely avoidable, says Dr. Rawls, but there are steps you can take to help fend off and reduce symptoms.

A few days before you change up your therapy, Dr. Rawls recommends adding some turmeric and krill or fish oil to your daily routine; these help support a healthy immune response. He also suggests using calming essential oils such as lavender and frankincense to reduce your stress response.

And in general, the most successful approach to feeling your best is to focus on restoring healthy immune function. Do that, and you’ll rebound faster from herxing and most other maladies that may come your way.

Dr. Rawls is a physician who overcame Lyme disease through natural herbal therapy. You can learn more about Lyme disease and recovery in Dr. Rawls’ best-selling book, Unlocking Lyme. You can also learn about Dr. Rawls’ personal journey in overcoming Lyme disease and fibromyalgia in his popular blog post, My Chronic Lyme Journey.

_________________

**Comment**

For those of you just starting treatment:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2015/12/06/tips-for-newbies/

More on Herxing:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2015/08/15/herxheimer-die-off-reaction-explained/

https://www.lymedisease.org/lymesci-herxing/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2017/06/28/jarisch-herxheimer-a-review/

Enzymes:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2016/04/22/systemic-enzymes/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/03/05/how-proteolytic-enzymes-may-help-lyme-msids/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/10/24/herbs-habits-to-revive-your-gut/

MSM – another detoxifier, gut support, & inflammation & pain reducer:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/03/02/dmso-msm-for-lyme-msids/

One of the hardest things to understand about this complex disease(es) is that you feel a whole lot worse before you feel better and this can take considerable time.  Managing the herx is a challenging job.  Many find sauna’s to be of great help.

 

 

LDN & CBD

 Approx. 1 Min

LDN Plus CBD

In this video Dr. Liptan explains the additive effects of CBD (cannabidiol) when taken with LDN (low dose naltrexone) in reducing neuroinflammation and fibromyalgia pain. CBD can also ease some of the side effects caused by LDN.

 

 Approx. 20 Min

CBD for Fibro Pt 1

Dr. Liptan explains the science of CBD, and its uses in the treatment of fibromyalgia. This video also covers:
  • The difference between THC and CBD
  • The effects of CBD on the body based on human and animal studies
  • CBD’s benefits for pain, muscle tension, arthritis, anxiety, insomnia, and adrenal fatigue

To purchase Dr. Liptan’s medical grade, lab tested CBD products visit https://www.fridabotanicals.com Dr. Liptan is also an author of:  “The FibroManual: A Complete Treatment Guide For You And Your Doctor” http://amzn.to/1XP7ZMV “The Fibro Food Formula” https://amzn.to/2rggeZt

**Comment**
I am not affiliated with any products nor do I make a red cent on anything related to this website or the support group; therefore, I can recommend the following product strictly from personal experience and use:  Lidtke CBD Gold:  https://lidtkecbd.com
We use the 2500mg plain.  While it’s $189.00, I only take 2-6 drops at night.  Definitely helps with sleep and pain.
cbd-gold-plain-2500mg
Their CBD Gold line of tinctures blends the full-spectrum CBD extract with supplements such as iodine, GABA, 5-HTP, L-tryptophan, and a whole-food complex of the vitamin C component. Besides, the Lidtke brand indicates that their manufacturing process is from non-GMO, herbicide and pesticide-free hemp for those seeking assurance on the possibility of additives.
We also take LDN.  You titrate up from 1.5mg.  Our ending dose is 4.5mg but some patients need higher dosages.  We found LDN helps our immune systems generally but specifically with better sleep and pain reduction.
Very informative documentary put out by the LDN Research Trust on Lyme/MSIDS.  Dr. Horowitz, Dr. Toups, Dr. Schweig, Dr. Windham, Dr. Holtorf, & Dr. Schwarzback, speak on everything from testing, to diet, to inflammation, and how LDN can help patients.

Your Liver is Your Detox Organ. Here’s Why & How to Support it

https://www.mindbodygreen.com/articles/support-liver-detox-with-supplements-and-herbs?

Your Liver Is Your Detox Organ. Here’s Why & How To Support It

Image by Marc Tran / Stocksy

We humans are alive because of brilliant biochemistry, and while each system of our body has its own unique function, they are all inextricably linked and work together to keep us alive and thriving. When one system goes awry, it often affects other seemingly unrelated aspects of our health. This is especially true when it comes to detox, which is one of the biggest factors of poor health that I see in my patients.

With research starting to show the link between our increased toxin exposure and autoimmune conditions, it’s more important than ever for your body’s detoxification systems to be working properly. As your body’s largest organ, your liver is also the main detoxifier.

Why your liver is your detox organ.

Working in constant communication with your stomach, pancreas, gallbladder, and the rest of your digestive system, your liver is responsible for storing and converting nutrients from the foods we eat for our bodies to utilize. Through its role in the metabolism of fat, protein, and carbohydrates, your liver works to ensure that blood glucose levels are stabilized to prevent blood sugar imbalances and other metabolic problems. It works to filter out toxins from the foods you eat and environmental exposures as well as acting as a blood purifier, clearing out your blood of these impurities and only utilizing the necessary nutrients. Needless to say, if your liver isn’t working well, your ability to detox is going to be greatly affected.

When your liver is overloaded with toxins, it creates a cascade of systemic chronic inflammation, which further affects your liver’s ability to rid itself of these toxins. It becomes a vicious cycle between toxin buildup and inflammation that can only be broken through limiting your toxin exposure and supporting your liver’s natural ability to detox.

Detox rituals that support your liver.

I’ve written in the past about various ways to make your life a cleanse. But to really boost your detox pathways and liver function, these targeted natural tools are my go-to for next-level liver and detox support:

Article continues below

1. Dandelion tea

Methylation is your body’s biochemical superhighway that controls your body’s ability to detox. B vitamins act as fuel for methylation and are found abundantly in dandelions. Brew up a cup of dandelion tea to support methylation and help support optimal liver function.

2. Milk thistle

This plant is one of the most well-researched natural remedies for treating liver problems and has been used for years to treat a number of different liver conditions, including hepatitis and alcoholic liver disease. Milk thistle aids in eliminating toxins that have built up in the liver in addition to helping restore liver cells that have been damaged from increased toxin exposure. You can take it in a supplement capsule or as a tea.

Image by Yoyochow23 / iStock

3. Garlic

Garlic helps to activate liver detox enzymes that work to break down the toxins that enter your body in order to effectively eliminate them. Thankfully, garlic makes a delicious addition to almost any recipe, so don’t be afraid to load up while cooking your next meal!

4. Sulfuric vegetables

Vegetables such as broccoli, broccoli sprouts, mushrooms, Brussels sprouts, and cauliflower are considered sulfuric and contain the powerful antioxidant glutathione. This antioxidant is essential for activating phase 1 and phase 2 liver detoxification.

5. Beets

Beets are great for helping break down toxins through increasing enzyme activity so that your body can eliminate them quicker. I love roasting them as a side or adding them to a salad seasoned with garlic!

Article continues below

6. Red clover

This is one of my favorites for its ability to rid toxins from not only your liver but your spleen and lymphatic system as well. You can take it in capsule form or as an herbal tincture.

7. Burdock root

As a tea or supplement, this root does wonders for removing toxins, specifically heavy metals. With its natural diuretic properties, it works to flush out toxins by increasing fluid excretion as well as boosting your lymphatic system.

You don’t have to adopt all these rituals to support your liver, but by making yourself a cup of dandelion tea, adding garlic and beets to your next meal, or taking a red clover supplement, you can support your detox pathways going into 2019.

________________

More on Detoxification:  https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/02/24/top-3-lyme-detox-myths-busted-dr-rawls/

https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/03/02/dmso-msm-for-lyme-msids/

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

Briefly, MSM stands for Methylsulfonylmethane and is 34% sulfur by weight. Sulfur plays a crucial role in detoxification and is an important antioxidant for producing glutathione. If you aren’t getting enough sulfur, glutathione can not work. Even if you have a diet rich in sulfur (think cabbage, onions, garlic, broccoli, etc – essentially the stinky veggies – and many other food items as well) your body still could use supplementation.

 

 

 

Live Webinar – The Pain Solution With Dr. Bill Rawls

https://rawlsmd.com/webinars/pain-solution/

52d2052a-webianr-title-desktop_0ig08z0ig08y000000

The Pain Solution with Dr. Bill Rawls

The sensation of pain serves the vital purpose of signaling the brain that something is wrong and requires attention and healing. But when pain is chronic and seems to have no identifiable cause, the brain doesn’t know how to restore health — and neither do most medical experts.

Join a live webinar with best-selling author Dr. Bill Rawls, who has studied the causes and symptoms of fibromyalgia, chronic Lyme disease, and chronic fatigue syndrome extensively.

He’ll explore the underlying forces that drive chronic pain and natural ways to resolve them, so you’re not just managing pain, but overcoming it.

PLUS: Have your questions ready for a LIVE Q&A on chronic pain and related illnesses including fibromyalgia, Lyme disease, and chronic fatigue syndrome with Dr. Rawls.

  • Presented by Dr. Bill Rawls and Carin Gorrell
  • Tuesday, December 11
  • 8pm EST
  • Webinar can be viewed on any device

RESERVE MY SEAT »

In this webinar, Dr. Rawls will also discuss:

  • The causes, characteristics, and biology of different types of pain
  • How your microbial burden impacts levels of pain-causing neurotransmitters and hormones
  • How CBD (cannabidiol) moderates the endocannabinoid system to reduce pain
  • Additional natural remedies for addressing underlying causes of pain and delivering both immediate and long-term relief
  • The four primary lifestyle factors that amplify pain
  • Numerous insights and answers during the LIVE Q&A with Dr. Rawls