In response to my last quarterly report (Vol 2, No 2) that low-dose Cortisol and other supplements normalize IL-6, thus balancing the Th1/Th2 arms of the immune system and significantly improving immune function (NK cell, CTL's etc) in HIV/AIDS, CFIDS, Candidiasis, Cancer and many other conditions, Alfred Plechner faxed me a l4 page report previously published titled "An Innovative Cancer Therapy that saves Animals. Can it help humans as well?
Plechner makes no mention of IL-6 being lowered by low-dose cortisol and continues to express the belief that excess estrogen is the primary culprit in immune dysfunction. Barnes reports that impaired thyroid function increases ovarian estrogen in women and offers a broad range of other possible theories why estrogen levels in men may be higher.
Plechner reports that cancer not only kills humans but dogs as well and states that it "accounts for almost half of canine deaths over the age of ten years."
Plechner states that "Cortisol is an essential adrenal hormone with a paramount regulatory influence over immune and inflammatory activity in the bodyŠthat a defect triggers a domino effect of problems, among them a profound destabilization of the immune system." He goes on to list several forms of cancer that are a result of cortisol deficiency including skin cancer, mammary cancer, lymphoma, fibrous sarcoma and leukemia and states: "I have successfully treated many cases by addressing this cortisol defect, in my opinion, a major causal factor."
by Alfred Plechner:
In June, 2003, I treated a dying Siberian Husky. The dog had been diagnosed two months before by another veterinarian with multiple metastasis tumors of the lungs. The site of the primary cancer had not been identified. The patient was eating poorly, breathing with difficulty, and coughing persistently. The animal had lost 12 pounds since the original diagnosis.
I suggested doing an endocrine-immune test and proceeding directly with steroid injections before the results came back. The owners agreed.
I injected the dog with 5 mg Vetalog (long acting hydrocortisone) and 60 mg of Depomedrol (methylprednisilone). Test results showed the animal had endocrine-immune imbalances including 52 mg/dl IgA suggesting probable malabsorption.
Two weeks later, the owners returned with a healthier dog. He had regained four pounds and was breathing easier. I rechecked the blood levels. The key estrogen and antibody levels had improved significantly. I now switched the dog to 6 mg of oral Medrol daily.
After another two weeks, I retested. The levels had normalized even further. Thoracic X-rays revealed that the lung lesions had disappeared. There was no evidence of tumors. The dog now weighed 78 pounds and had regained his appetite. Breathing was normal.
Although the dog has been on the therapy program for only a short period of time, the initial response has been excellent and not unusual. The potential exists for normal health as long as the dog is maintained on the program.
For humans, Plechner writes: "The testing and therapy program I have described here has produced outstanding results for many years in the treatment of many different types of cancer. Can cortisol deficiency increase the risk of cancer? Do my findings in animals with cancer apply to humans?" Editor's note: The successful Gerson Treatment for cancer, developed over 50 years ago includes thyroid supplementation and adrenal support. Coincidence?
The above case with a dog is one of several reported by Plechner who states he has successfully treated over 30,000 pets with these methods since 1978 including cats with FIV (Feline immunodeficiency virus), the cat equivalent to HIV.
For a thyroid medication for dogs, he has used Soloxine. Interestingly, he finds that cats often do not need thyroid supplementation although they still respond to the steroid (cortisol) treatments the same as the dogs do.
Plechner reports that researchers have found that soy and soy-based products decrease cortisol levels and impair thyroid function. Soy products are also listed as depressing thyroid function in David Brownstein MD book "Overcoming Thyroid Disorders." The exceptions listed are two soy-based products Miso and Tempeh. According to Brownstein, soy milk, tofu, soy ice cream, soy cheese and numerous other soy products should be avoided. Brownstein listed several factors that impair the conversions of thyroid hormones T4 to the active form T3. I list them here as it is increasingly apparent that the health of the thyroid is linked to the function of the adrenal glands and in particular cortisol production.
1. Aging linked to a gradual decline of both thyroid and adrenal hormones.
2. Alpha Lipoic Acid (does not affect everyone)
4. Chronic illness
5. Cigarette smoking
6. Diet factors. Soy products and cruciferous vegetables dose dependent (avoid large quantities). Studies in animals show soy impairs T4 to T3 conversion.
7. Drugs (Birth control pills, Lithium, Estrogens, Propranolol, Beta blockers, Dexamethasone, Methimazole and Propylthiouracil)
9. Growth hormone deficiency
10. Heavy metal toxicity including mercury and lead, pesticides, sodium chloride as well as sodium fluoride in city water.
12. High Stress
13. Low adrenal states
14. Malnutrition (mineral deficiencies) consumption of trans fats and hydrogenated fats and a lack of good fats monounsaturated avocados, olive oil, palm, omega 3.
15. Mineral and vitamin deficiencies (selenium, Vitamin A, B6 and B12)
16. Postoperative state
17. Physical trauma.
Besides the above list, Brownstein cites research that in a state of hypothyroidism, hydrocortisone production and metabolism is usually low. Hypothyroidism can be established by chronic low basal body temperature as measured by the Barnes method upon rising. Thus a direct link has been established between subnormal thyroid and inadequate adrenal production of hormones.
Toxemia or the buildup of toxins in the body and an impairment of the detoxification pathways can be a major cause of impaired thyroid function. Link by link, the health of one organ affects the health of another. The liver, the organ through which most detoxification occurs, has the greatest burden of all.
Today, I reasonably estimate that due to toxins in the diet, air pollution and contaminants in the water we drink and electromagnetic pollution, that the combined effect contributes to overworked adrenal and subnormal thyroid activity in at least a third or more of the population in the United States.
Pregnenolone, the mother of all the hormones produced by the adrenal glands is made from cholesterol. Adequate cholesterol levels are needed to insure a supply of raw material to produce adrenal hormones. Adrenal and thyroid function may be impaired when cholesterol levels fall below 125. Some drugs to lower cholesterol could cause a whole range of illnesses from cancer to heart disease if they cause cholesterol levels to drop below 125. Recently, some pharmaceutical companies are bordering on quackery in their health claims in mass markets such as cable television that everyone should take cholesterol lowering drugs and reduce their cholesterol to 70! Bad advice. Oh! will there be the lawsuits when millions of people get sick from this ill conceived marketing propaganda.
The demonization of cholesterol on TV for many years heavily promoted margarine that is made from hydrogenated vegetable oils. Margarine with its transfatty acids has caused more heart disease than had the public eaten butter all those years. For a very long time, eggs were also demonized for their cholesterol but have recently been vindicated.
Today the demonization of cortisone by marketers of Cortislim and Relacore also misleads the public. If these products really lower cortisol levels as their promoters claim, they will lead to more than weight loss around the belly . They will cause immune system failure, hypothyroidism, fatigue, depression, cancer, arthritis and other illnesses associated with a failure of cell-mediated immunity and natural kill cell function.
Brownstein states that the adrenal hormones are Pregnenolone (a precursor hormone). Various adrenal hormones can be made from Pregnenolone. Other Adrenal hormones include Adrenaline, Epinephrine, Progesterone, Cortisol, Androgen, DHEA, Estrogen and Testosterone.
The Pituitary gland produces human growth hormone (HGH) and HGH levels improve when other adrenal hormones are normalized. Chronic illness affects hormone production and balance and the process of aging results in steadily lower levels of cortisol, DHEA, testosterone and HGH.
Brownstein cites research that low thyroid hormone levels is linked to low pregnenolone levels in hypothyroid patients. He recommends 10 to 20 mg daily of pregnenolone along with thyroid hormones and reports patients recover their energy and regain their memory.
Straub RH et al report from Germany that "In chronic inflammatory diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, an alteration of the HPA stress response results in inappropriately low cortisol secretion in relation to adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) secretion. Furthermore, it has recently been shown that the levels of another adrenal hormone, DHEA, were significantly lower after ACTH stimulation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis without prior corticosteroids than in healthy controlsŠWe recently confirmed that DHEA is a potent inhibitor of IL-6, which confirmed an earlier study in mice."
Straub also reports that DHEA inhibits NF-Kappa B and that DHEA deficiency is linked to osteoporosis. Thus the authors concluded that a combined therapy of hydrocortisone or other corticosteroids be used along with DHEA in chronic inflammatory diseases.
Brownstein in his book recommends the natural hydrocortisone over Prednisone and other synthetic steroids and he suggests a maximum of 30 mg daily of hydrocortisone (but more preferably 10 to 20 mg daily). For DHEA, he suggests 10 to 15 mg daily.
One of our readers from Miami who has HIV/ AIDS and osteoporosis is trying 20 mg hydrocortisone daily along with 25mg of DHEA every other day plus two Red clover capsules twice a day and 1/2 to 1 grain of natural thyroid daily. So far, he has tolerated this 4 part combination well and reports feeling much better even though he has taken a vacation from his anti-HIV meds. Since he has just started he has no lab results to share with us at this time. He also takes coral calcium and a number of other nutritional supplements.
He also uses hydrocortisone cream on his leg and the bone pain is nearly gone. This is just after a few days. He has added red clover capsules and low dose DHEA to help increase his bone density. He also plans on adding 1/2 grain of thyroid daily to his regime. He is currently on his new regimen while taking a drug holiday from his HIV meds.
Oct, 2004: One person with chronic fatigue and symptoms of Lupus told me that he took 20 mg of hydrocortisone last year for several months and all his symptoms disappeared. When he stopped using the hydrocortisone, his symptoms have re-emerged.
Synthetic corticosteroids are usually 4 to 6 times stronger than their natural counterpart - hydrocortisone. While Plechner DVM has had success using either hydrocortisone or their synthetic counterparts in treating pets, there are several reasons to prefer the natural hormone. One is that the natural form of cortisol (hydrocortisone) has the identical molecular structure of cortisol produced by the adrenal glands and there is no known toxicity problems when used long term at low doses.
High doses and long-term use of synthetic steroids like Prednisone or Prednisolone (both synthetic adrenocorticosteroids) have been linked to loss of bone mass density (BMD) or osteoporosis. Other side effects from these steroids include dizziness, loss of potassium that may contribute to increased appetite, fluid retention and weight gain. More side effects that can be found in the Physicians Desk Reference.
Hydrocortisone is a natural hormone produced by the adrenal glands. Studies have found that low doses of hydrocortisone (30 mg or less daily) have little or no effect on bone mineral density and a few studies indicate it may actually improve bone mineral density (BMD). According to David Brownstein MD(1) low dose hydrocortisone usually 10 to 20 mg daily does not produce the negative side effects (loss of bone density and other side effects) that are caused by the synthetic steroids.
Brownstein reports that low dose hydrocortisone also improves thyroid function by helping to convert T4 the inactive thyroid hormone into T3, the active form. This is why people with chronic fatigue syndrome report more energy and well being from using low-dose hydrocortisone daily.
Low-dose hydrocortisone may be associated with a slight weight gain (about 5 lbs) due to excreted potassium leaving excess sodium that causes water retention. This small weight problem should not be necessarily blamed on low-dose hydrocortisone but on a diet that is too high in salt (sodium). In fact sodium intake in the diet of most people is 5 to 10 times higher than what is needed and potassium and magnesium intake are about 50% lower than what is needed. The problem is the consumption of processed foods (soups, pizza, lunchmeats etc) that are loaded with toxic amounts of salt. By eliminating foods high in salt and consuming whole natural foods like bananas that are high in potassium, any weight gain while using low-dose hydrocortisone can be prevented.
1. The Miracle of Natural Hormones, by David Brownstein MD (This book cites 40 actual cases and is supported by 82 published scientific references).
A few months ago, I talked with a 31 year-old man from the Midwest who had recently had hip replacement surgery. I said: "31 years old you are too young for hip replacement surgery." He said he was HIV+ and mentioned a long list of HIV meds he was taking. He blamed his hip bone deterioration on the HIV. I told him I disagreed as there is no proof that HIV alone can cause this especially in someone this young. Most of the reported cases of osteoporosis now widespread in the HIV community in the US have occurred since 1996 when the use of protease inhibitors and drug cocktails became a treatment standard. I don't recall hearing of any cases of osteoporosis in HIV+ people before 1996. Today the problem of bone deterioration in HIV+ persons on anti-HIV drugs is an epidemic and may be a serious side effect of some HIV medications.
by Heath KV, Montaner JS, Bondy G, Singer J, O'Shaughnessy MV, Hogg RS.Curr Drug Targets. 2003 Jan;4(1):13-22. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.
To provide an overview of the epidemiologic parameters of emerging adverse effects associated with antiretroviral therapy for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) disease. All available antiretroviral agents are associated with significant adverse drug effects. Of particular interest are newly emerging suspected adverse drug effects which were not generally noted in pre-marketing trials nor captured under current standard clinical care practices. Suspected antiretroviral toxicities meeting these criteria include: HIV-associated lipodystrophy which can include peripheral lipoatrophy, lipohypertrophy and metabolic abnormalities; hyperlactatemia and lactic acidosis; and metabolic bone abnormalities such as decreased bone mineral density, osteoporosis and osteonecrosis.
Results of prospective and observational studies reported to date suggest that these abnormalities, while aetiologically complex, are likely attributable to treatment factors and may be intricately interrelated. The medical management of these symptoms remains unsatisfactory given the unexplored efficacy of traditional approaches in the HIV positive population. While the pathogenic mechanism of these disorders remains obscure, a theory of tissue-specific mitochondrial toxicity has been proposed.
With the continued introduction of novel therapies and standard treatment with combination therapy, new adverse events will continue to emerge among persons being treated for HIV disease. Beyond their immediate clinical implications, these events may contribute to changing patterns of antiretroviral utilization including therapy initiation, adherence and cessation.
Editor's Note: There is disagreement among the experts whether or not HAART for HIV is causing loss of bone density with some studies saying it is and others saying it is not with a few studies finding that the length of time a person is infected is a more predictable factor for osteoporosis. There is a case to be made for both arguments, but suspicions that the protease inhibitors are contributing factors is gaining some traction.
The aging population, women with PMS, and millions of people addicted to soda pop especially Coke, Pepsi, Tab and all the other sodas high in phosphoric acid, are developing weaker bone structures by the day. A lack of quality sources of calcium, dark green vegetables, almonds, etc and lack of sunshine that produces Vitamin D all contribute to the national osteoporosis epidemic.
The end result is that more people are getting surgery for damaged spinal vertebrae, knee and hip replacements. Those not getting these drastic measures have lower and upper back pain and/or bone pain in the legs and arms. When you walk into a grocery store and look at the long isles of soda pop, cookies and sweet rolls, you can see why America's health is going to hell in a shopping cart.
1. Exercise Walk 3 to 5 miles a day or find an active hobby like dancing or roller skating. Throw away the remote control for the TV.
2. Diet AVOID Coca Cola, Pepsi Cola, Tab etc and other sodas that contain phosphoric acid. Phosphoric acid leeches calcium out of your bones and directly destroys vertebrae in the spinal column. I know two people who were one case a day drinkers of Coke for over a decade that have since had back surgery for ruptured discs and are now limited to a wheel chair. Unable to walk normally, they live with constant back pain.
AVOID SALT Sodium Chloride increases bone mineral loss among many other adverse effects. Try to keep sodium intake to 500 mg daily or less, not the 2500 to 5000 mg currently consumed.
Eat whole foods - fruit, vegetables, nuts (almonds) and cultured foods yogurt, cottage cheese, and no sweets with added corn syrup or white sugar added.
3. Calcium lactate 4 to 6 capsules once daily in the evening. Note: People with very acid stomachs may do better using Coral Calcium which also neutralizes the stomach acid..
4. Cod liver oil (1 tsp daily) or other natural sources of vitamin D (indoor tanning)
5. Magnesium Citrate or magnesium oxide about 500 mg daily
6. Boron and trace minerals Marine Liquid Ionic Minerals from the Great Salt Lake Utah 20 to 40 drops daily. Zinc deficiency has been associated with loss of BMD in men. (Suggestion: eat pumpkin seeds daily for zinc and the prostate).
7. Nutrients: Vitamin B 12 deficiency has been associated with loss of bone density in vegetarians. Daily B12 should be considered.
8. Herbs to help preserve mineral bone density -
a. Black Cohosh 2 capsules twice daily and/or
b. Red Clover 2 capsules twice daily.
9. Natural Hormones to help preserve BMD
a. Progesterone cream or consider Wild Yam capsules or extract.
b. DHEA low dose for men or women over 40 years of age. Dr Brownstein's recommendations: For men over 40 25 mg 3 days a week (Mon, Weds, Fri). For women 10 mg daily for 5 days per week or 25 mg twice a week (e.g. Mon and Fri). Have your physician monitor DHEA levels after 4 to 8 weeks. Brownstein advises against high doses of DHEA (over 25 mg daily) as this can reduce adrenal production of other hormones
Other hormone herbs: For women Dong Quai, Damiana. For men Ginseng, Sarsaparilla.
Sakurai N et al reports that Actein, a tetracyclic triterpenoid from black cohosh showed potent activity against the HIV virus. (1) Einbond LS et al researchers at Columbia Univ College in NY found growth inhibitory activity of alcohol based extracts of black cohosh on human breast cancer cells. Research continues as to why Actein and other compounds in black cohosh would inhibit breast cancer. (2)
Powles T writing in Breast cancer Research, states: "Plant extracts such as Red Clover, which contain high levels of isoflavanoids, have been used to reduce menopausal symptoms and have been shown to reduce bone loss in healthy women." (3)
In her book on "Today's Herbal Health," Louise Tenny M.H. states that Red Clover has been used for bronchitis, as a blood purifier, in treating cancer and for the nerves.
Black Cohosh: In a study published in the Journal of Bone Mineral Metabolism (4), Nisselein T et al reported on the results of an extract of Black Cohosh given to rats who were ovariectomized and placed on a soy-free diet. They were given a Black cohosh product called "Remifemin" that has been marketed in Europe for the treatment of hot flashes in women with PMS. The researchers checked for markers of bone loss in the urine including pyridinoline (PYR) and deoxypyridinoline (DPY) and baseline and weekly intervals. The results indicated that the extract of black cohosh significantly diminished the urinary content of PYR and DPY indicating that bone loss was decreasing.
Nisslein stated: "Because extracts of black cohosh are already recognized as safe and effective in the treatment of certain gynecological disorders, a longer-term clinical trial of this herbal remedy for the treatment of osteoporosis is warranted." (4)
Folk medicine uses: Louise Tenny reports Black Cohosh has been used as a tonic for the central nervous system, for hot flashes, for asthma, bronchitis, epilepsy, high blood pressure, hormone balance, menstrual problems, menopause, TB and whooping cough.
Black Cohosh and Red Clover may help prevent and even strengthen bone density as well as be an adjunct treatment for cancer. This is in comparison to low dose estrogen (hormone replacement therapy) that helps prevent bone loss but is also known to be carcinogenic. A search of the literature indicates that black cohosh and red clover are safe choices for both men and women.
Licorice is a herb that taken in small amounts can benefit the adrenal glands of men and women. However, too much may cause high blood pressure.
Holy Basil (Ocimum Sanctum) is used in India as a Cox-2 inhibitor and reduces inflammation in the body. In animal studies, the "Control rats" under noise stress had a decline in cortisol levels while the rats taking Holy Basil and exposed to the same noise stress had cortisol levels that remained the same. This indicates that Holy Basil has anti-stress effects (5).
1. Anti-AIDS agents Actein from black cohosh, Sakurai et al; Bioorg Med Chem Lett. 2004 Mar 8;14(5):1329-32
2. Black Cohosh on human breast cancer cells, Einbond ES et al; Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2004 Feb;83(3):221-31
3. Isoflavones and women's health, Powles T Breast Cancer Res 2004;6(3):140-2
4. "rat model of osteoporosis" Nisselein T et al, J Bone Miner Metab 2003;21(6):370-6
5. Indian J Physiol Pharma. 1997 Oct;41(4):429-30
Freda PU (*) et al report that "Abnormalities of the endocrine system, and of the hypothalamus-pituitary adrenal (HPA) axis in particular, are associated with HIV infection. Opportunistic pathogens, neoplasms, and drugs used to treat infections may all contribute to the reported abnormalities, which range from subtle subclinical disturbances of HPA axis regulation to frank adrenal insufficiency. Patients with AIDS should be considered to be at high risk for primary or secondary adrenal insufficiency, and those with symptoms should be evaluated. Subclinical abnormalities may progress to clinically significant adrenal insufficiency as therapies improve and patients with AIDS live longer."
* The hypothalamus pituitary adrenal axis in HIV, Freda PU et al, AIDS READ 1999 Jan-Feb;9(1):43-50
Eledrise MS (1) et al in 2001 report from the Univ. of Texas, Galveston that "Adrenal insufficiency is known to be a complication of HIV infection, although estimates of its prevalence and severity vary. Adrenal insufficiency is the most serious complication that occurs in persons with HIV infection. Patients with AIDS are considered to be at high risk for primary and secondary adrenal insufficiency. We describe 3 patients with AIDS who had clinical features suggestive of adrenal insufficiency, but their Corticotrophin (ACTH) stimulation tests were normal. Repeat testing confirmed the diagnosis in one patient, and further testing with the overnight Metyrapone test revealed evidence of secondary adrenal insufficiency in the other patients. Persistent clinical improvement was evident on subsequent glucocorticoid therapy. A normal response to the ACTH stimulation test can be dangerously misleading. Patients with AIDS and suspected adrenal insufficiency who have normal screening by the (high dose) ACTH stimulation test should undergo further testing for secondary adrenal disease."
Researchers have found that Metyrapone and low dose (LD-ACTH) test are far more accurate than the standard high dose ACTH test.
The second problem with lab test results whether it is selenium, DHEA, cortisol or something else is that lab reference numbers are based on what is average for normal healthy people. Unfortunately, many people who get these tests are not normal healthy people but suffer from various conditions from HIV/AIDS to CFIDS to MS to cancer to candidiasis to intestinal dysbiosis and much more. People with these conditions most likely will have a need for higher plasma levels of cortisol and many other nutrients including selenium. What would be high levels in a normal person would be low levels in someone with chronic inflammation and immune dysfunction.
It is my opinion that the need for cortisol in someone with cancer or AIDS may be up to twice as high as what is found in healthy persons. It is my opinion that it is more important to get interleuken-6 (IL-6) levels back to its normal reference range than to worry about getting cortisol down to its normal reference range. Research published in the last issue of this journal indicates that as free cortisol levels go up IL-6 goes down.
The most important test is the TH2 Cytokine Profile which measures IL-6 levels. By tracking the effects of various doses of hydrocortisone from 10 mg to 20 mg to 30 mg daily and adjusting the dose up or down until IL-6 reaches the normal reference ranges, you can determine the effectiveness of the treatment. In HIV, I am expecting the CD4 counts to rise and viral load to fall as IL-6 returns to a normal level. In CFIDS, fatigue should go away and energy should return to normal. In cancer, tumors should stop growing and start receding. The IL-6 test can also measure the effects of other IL-6 inhibitors and normalizers like fish oil, royal jelly, turmeric, holy basil and others.
James Balch MD states in his book "Prescription for Nutritional Healing" that in Adrenal disorders to avoid alcohol, caffeine and tobacco, Avoid foods that weaken the adrenals including pork, fats, fried foods, ham, highly processed foods, red meats, salt, sodas, sugar and white flour. He states: "These foods put unnecessary stress on the adrenal glands."
For nutrients, Balch recommends Pantothenic acid 100 mg ea 3 times a day. Vitamin B complex and Vitamin C and 500 mg daily of the amino acid L-tyrosine. In herbs, he recommends Astragalus, Milk Thistle and Siberian Ginseng. A low sodium diet is critical as is eating whole foods including lots of dark green vegetables that are naturally rich in potassium. Royal Jelly, Chlorella, Spirulina, raw pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds also support the Adrenals.
IT IS AS IMPORTANT A MATTER AS LIFE OR DEATH! When Il-6 levels are elevated above normal, HIV and AIDS will progress and cancer will continue to metastasize and grow. People with chronic fatigue and/or candidiasis will continue to be plagued with these health problems.
Just 20 mg daily of hydrocortisone may arrest HIV progression and stop and reverse many forms of cancer. Why isn't it being used more? The answer is that it is all about M - the big M that is "MONEY." Hydrocortisone is a generic drug and it is a low-cost treatment - about $10 a month. This is too small a sum of money to feed the pharmaceutical monster on Wall St. What we have instead is a song and dance routine from "Big Pharma" to promote expensive treatments for cancer, AIDS and many other conditions including arthritis costing from several hundred to several thousand dollars a month. What gets the publicity are the drugs that feed the bottom line of the stockholders, not the treatments that save the patients lives and well as money.
When you go to your doctor, make sure you get a prescription for Hydrocortisone, not Prednisone or Prednisolone or some other synthetic steroid.
For the third time in the past 2 years, our supplies of the Miraculous Water from San Damiano were exhausted and yet another long frustrating dry spell ensued. In June, 2004, while requests for the water piled up on my desk, we ran out of the Miraculous Water and sent for two five-liter jugs that were being held for us in Rome. We thought that the water, although shipped by boat, would arrive around the middle of July. We expected the shipment would take 4 to 6 weeks and began to lose hope when it did not arrive by the end of July.
Ten weeks went by before the shipment reach us. We found it was delayed due to leakage from one battle that had damaged the box. The US Postal Service repackaged the bottles and this had delayed its arrival by about a month. Ever since the very first shipment from Italy, the containers that are used to fill the water in San Damiano have leaked in shipment and this has been very frustrating.
In August, after spending over 100 hours searching the internet, I finally located a contact in San Damiano and now have obtained an additional five liter jug of the water along with 60 handkerchiefs and blessed rose petals. According to a Catholic Sister who obtained the water for us, many people have been healed from the water and also from using the handkerchiefs and the blessed rose petals. This last shipment did not leak and arrived in a few weeks after being sent by airmail direct from San Damiano.
In August, before the water from San Damiano arrived, I imported water from Lourdes, France, where in 1858 the Virgin Mary appeared to St Bernadette and directed a well to be dug. The water from this well at Lourdes has healed many thousands of people since 1858.
As a result of importing water from Lourdes and San Damiano, we now have an ample supply of both and expect to be able to replenish supplies when they get low. However, when it comes to the water from San Damiano and the extreme difficulties it has taken to get it here, I take nothing for granted. I would agree with comments people have made about this water that "it has a mind of its own." Persons who use either of these healing waters are asked to write to us and share their experiences.
In May, I had given a bottle of the Miraculous Water of San Damiano to two friends. One friend, Ron B, had the bottle on a table in his living room. When his mother came to visit, she complained to Ron about her knee hurting. She previously had knee replacement surgery due to osteoporosis and arthritis. While she does not believe in the Marion apparitions at Lourdes and San Damiano, seeing the bottle of water with the Madonna's image on it, she asked for the water and placed some of it on her knee. About 10 minutes later, she said, "my knee does not hurt anymore."
The other bottle was given to Patrick R whose mother has diabetes. Earlier this year she had both her legs amputated due to gangrene caused by the diabetes. After the surgery, her wounds would not heal and several weeks had gone by. Patrick brought her the water and she was most grateful. She applied the water to her wounds and said the prayers. Within a few weeks all the wounds had healed.
These are comments from friends who told me the benefits their mothers had received from using the Miraculous Water of San Damiano..
Boston MA. The Marist Fathers distribute a monthly newsletter called "Echoes from Lourdes." The newsletter reports on the experiences of persons whose association with Lourdes has changed their life beginning with the very first written account by St Bernadette who was visited by the Virgin Mary several times beginning on February 11th, 1858. The Marist Fathers distribute Lourdes Water to their readers and publish reports of their experiences using the water. Here are a few of what is half a dozen or more letters received monthly and published in Echoes from Lourdes (Volume 50, No 2 and No 7)
KY. "My eye doctor was watching me for glaucoma in my eyes for a year and a half. I started using Lourdes Water in each eye every night at bed time six months ago, and now the pressure is down in both eyes and there is no sign of glaucoma. The doctor says my eyes look great. I am so grateful to Jesus and His Mother for this healing!" AC.
NJ " "I just want to say thank you to Our Lady of Lourdes and her intercession for me to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I had a small cyst on my eye lid that grew and became itchy, so my eye doctor worked on it and said I would need minor surgery. He gave me antibiotics and asked my to come back in a month for the surgery. I went home and started applying Lourdes Water on my eye lid everyday. Within one week, the cyst fell off! The doctor said most of the time something is left there but it looks so good that I do not need surgery. I am very grateful to the lady of Lourdes and her intercessionŠ." C.W.
July 2004., a resident of California writes:
"This is a gift for a special favor received. I have been using Our Lady's Lourdes Water since 1958 when I had cancer, and thank Our Lord and Our Blessed Mother for so many blessings and thank you so much for the Lourdes Center." M.D.
The monthly newsletter that I have been receiving contains many reports from readers of cancer remission and help from the water and from prayers for all kinds of health-related problems, even in situations where hope for recovery was almost nil. For a sample copy of the newsletter, write to Lourdes Center, Marist Fathers, 698 Beacon St, Boston MA 02215.
October 6, 2004 Conrad LeBeau.
Since I began filling small 2 ounce bottles with water from the well at San Damiano a few years ago, I have found that the water will pour normally one second and then a few seconds later will stop flowing into the jar. It sometimes is difficult to fill the bottles because of the water's unusual behavior. Many times when the bottle is upright and perpendicular to the surface and I try to fill the bottle too quickly, the water just abruptly stops flowing. This can happen even when the bottle is less than one-quarter full. The water just sits there in the funnel and does not move until I tilt the bottle sideways. The tip of the funnel is open and measures at 3/8ths of an inch in diameter. The water acts as though it is lighter than the air in the bottle.
In contrast I have filled the same bottle with the same funnel with tap water, distilled or spring water and it fills up easily and without any difficulty. If I fill the funnel too rapidly, air bubbles move up through the center of the funnel and the water flows into the bottle easily. The water from San Damiano behaves very differently from ordinary water. When the water is poured too quickly and the funnel begins to fill up, the water stops flowing into the partially empty bottle.
Now comes another surprise. When the five liter jug of water arrived from Lourdes, France, in August and I began filling up the same two ounce plastic bottles with the same funnel, the same phenomena happened - the water, if poured too fast, would completely stop flowing and just sit there suspended in midair. Again the bottle had to be tilted sideways to create an air opening inside the funnel for the water to flow into the bottle.
My current observations are that the water from Lourdes, France, where the Virgin Mary appeared to St. Bernadette in 1858 has the same paranormal properties as the water from the well at San Damiano where the Virgin Mary appeared to Rosa Quattrini in the 1960s. The pH of the water from Lourdes and San Damiano is also identical at 6.4.
The water from both of these wells is anything but ordinary. What I have described here is a simple experiment that can be duplicated anywhere by any researcher or scientist. It proves beyond a reasonable doubt that the water from Lourdes and San Damiano, both brought to us in different centuries after visits from the heavenly Madonna, have identical properties that are not found in regular water. These properties defy known laws of physics and gravity.
Water with different physical properties than those we usually encounter may have other effects on the human body that could be studied by researchers in a controlled experiment. The many who have come to drink the water from Lourdes and San Damiano and have left behind their wheelchairs and crutches have also left us with a silent testimony of the benefits they have received.
Note: Recently, I have found a funnel that has small ridges on the outside that allows air to escape while the water fills the bottle. A funnel that fits snug against the inside rim of the bottle will produce the antigravity effects I have described here.
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