1. Candidiasis and other chronic infections
2. Hypoglycemia/insulin resistance
3. Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
4. Strong cravings for salty foods, sweets or alcohol
5. Autoimmune disorders
6. Feeling like taking a nap during the day or mid afternoon.
7. Asthma or a tendency toward asthma (wheezing)
8. Fatigue that comes on easily after physical or mental exertion.
9. Excessive food allergies and sensitivities (lactose/gluten intolerance)
10. Aching joints
13. Low IgA
14. Fluid retention
15. Weight gain/obesity for both men and women
16. In men, growth of tits on the upper chest
17. Weak sex drive (low DHEA and Testosterone)
18. Digestive disorders
19. Low Natural Killer cell function
20. Elevated Il-6 and Anergy/loss of DTH
1. Liver toxicity and sluggishness (from toxins in the food, water, air)
2. Heavy metal toxins, especially mercury, in the air and food supply.
3. Stress - significant fluctuations in blood sugar caused by eating refined sugar and sweets, toxins in the liver. Other - excess noise, worry, fear, anxiety etc. Anti-stress treatment - talk a long walk every day - listen to soft classical music, sing a song, play a musical instrument, meditate or pray.
4. Excess estrogen from processed food and beverages and from the adrenals
5. Pesticides in food that have an estrogenic effect that are toxic inside the cells.
6. Hormones (estrogen) given to beef, pork and poultry for weight gain prior to marketing them. Milk from cows fed bovine growth hormone.
7. Nutritional factors -
a. Excess consumption of sugar, candy, soda, sweets, bakery and refined carbohydrates including alcohol.
b. Excess salt intake and lack of high potassium foods; foods with MSG added, foods deep fried or cooked at high temperatures, foods containing hydrogenated fats, trans-fatty acids or cooked with polyunsaturated fatty acids.
c. Deficiency of vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid) and natural vitamin A, C, E, chromium and B vitamins.
d. Lack of fresh organic fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and seafood in diet.
8. Environmental factors a. Microwave ovens, exposure to computers without screen filters to block ELF and VLF radiation, living near TV and radio stations, high power lines, within 1000 ft of cellular phone towers.
9. Chronic infections - HIV, HHV-6, Hepatitis viral
10. Protease inhibitors used to treat HIV can inhibit thyroid function. Check the Physicians Desk Reference.
11. Intestinal dysbiosis - unfriendly flora predominate.
1. Diet - Hypoallergenic - Give up any food to which you are allergic or sensitive such as corn, wheat and other grains with gluten, lactose found milk, or ice cream. (yogurt or naturally cultured cottage cheese or whey protein are usually well tolerated). Consider the immune enhancement diet in this book. Eliminate commercial beef, pork and poultry that are contaminated with antibiotics and steroids. Avoid all soy products including soymilk as it will depress thyroid hormones and body temperature. The exception to this caveat is Miso a fermented soy product that does not seem to cause any problems.
a. Manganese - eat 1/2 cup oat bran daily and 2 cups of pineapple (juice or fruit). Both foods are very high in manganese. (Avoid amino acid chelates - if the oxide form is not available use the carbonate form) Serve Oat Bran cereal or whole oatmeal with diluted coconut milk. Coconut oil and milk are thermogenic and increase body temperature and promote weight loss is persons who are obese.
b .Chromium - wheat germ and whole grains.
c. Watercress, parsley, slippery elm, yucca, hydrangea, kelp and bayberry all help improve adrenal output and function.
d. Coconut oil and milk - increases metabolic rate, burns fat in helps normalize body temperature. Use 3 tablespoons of coconut oil daily. Use coconut milk on breakfast cereal.
e. Except for supplemental freshly ground flaxseed, eliminate soybean, corn, canola and other oils high in poly-unsaturated fatty acids (suppresses thyroid function) and of course margarine (except for Smart Balance) and all partially hydrogenated vegetable oils/ shortening. Use olive oil mainly - high in monounsaturated fats. It is OK to use some sesame or peanut oil in moderation as these also contains substantial amounts of monounsaturated fats also (40% to 47%).
2. Supplements: Niacin and Pantothenic acid. Consider "Coenzymated B Vitamins" by Source Naturals. This product is taken sublingually and contains a full range of B vitamins in their most bioavailable form. Dissolve one tablet in mouth twice daily. B vitamins not coenzymated may not be bioavailable. Natural B vitamin sources - liver, brewers yeast and royal jelly.
a. Royal Jelly - 500 mg freeze dried once or twice a day. (Do not use if you are allergic to it) High in Pantothenic acid and contains a full spectrum of all vitamins, minerals, amino acids and some special compounds found nowhere else.
b. D'Glucarate - 400 mg 2X - binds estrogen receptors - major detox pathway. (Found in health food stores)
c. Homeopathic Adrenal by Natra Bio - comes in liquid or tablets. (Found in health food stores) Start off with a small amount and gradually increase while monitoring body temperature.
d. Siberian Ginseng - 500 mg once or twice daily.
e. Vitamin A - 2 or 3 teaspoons of Cod Liver oil daily.
f. Vitamin C - Beet derived (Nutricology) or from Amla (gooseberries), Rose hips or Acerola cherries.
g. Magnesium - 500 mg daily of magnesium oxide. (Avoid the amino acid chelates)
3. Herbs; Red clover (estrogen blocker - increases T3), Yucca, Tumeric (Curcumin) and Hops - High in phytonutrients that act as estrogen blockers to stop their entry into the cells.
4. Stress Reduction - avoid loud noises - listen to soft classical music.
5. Avoid Soy products (except Miso)
6. Use Resveratrol (an antioxidant and phytoestrogen from the skin of red grapes - antioxidant (binds estrogen receptors - inhibits breast cancer).
7. Use white button mushrooms raw - species Agaricus bisporus (reduces estrogen production, inhibits breast cancer cell .proliferation) *J. Nutr. 2001 Dec;131(12):3288-
8. Over the Counter remedy: Hydrocortisone Cream 1% - 1/4 teaspoon massaged into the skin daily contains about 10 mg of hydrocortisone cortisone and twice daily would be 20 mg. Based on an article by David Brownstein MD, it is best not to exceed 30 mg of cortisone daily. Cortisone is available as a prescription and hydrocortisone topical creams are available without a prescription. The topical application of a cream will result in absorption into the blood the same as if it were taken orally. Do not exceed 1/2 teaspoon of a 1% hydrocortisone cream daily without checking with a health care professional.
1. Low Body Temperature (LBT) (not always conclusive as LBT can coexist with normal T4 and T3 values for thyroxin.) www.wilsonssyndrome.com
2. Susceptible to all kinds of infections
3. Low white blood cell counts
4. Anergy - lack of DCH response to a skin test to challenge immune system
6. unrefreshing sleep - can't completely wake up
8. Chronic sinusitis
9. Dry scaly skin (eczema, psoriasis, acne etc)
10. Rheumatic pain in joints
12. Menstrual problems for women
Dr. Regan Golob has an article on "How's Your Thyroid" on his website at http://www.docgolob.com/thryoid.htm. He states: "the thyroid a lot of times reaches burnout due to over-stimulation of the adrenals, which become exhausted. This over-stimulation can be from coffee or pop, excess protein, stress etc. The thyroid picks things up for a while, until it becomes exhausted and then a persons experiences fatigue, intolerance to cold, weight gain, muscle weakness, depression, dry and scaly skin."
Dr. Golob recommends a skin test for iodine deficiency, as iodine is the most important mineral for thyroid function. He suggests getting a bottle of tincture of iodine, the kind that stains your skin yellowish brown (not the colorless kind). You paint a 1-inch square area on your arm. The stain should stay present for 24 hours. If it goes away in a few hours or before the 24-hour period has elapsed, it means your thyroid gland is looking for and needs more iodine. Keep up the daily skin treatments until the stain is present after 24 hours, then try the test every other day or until it is not needed.
The basal temperature test under the armpit needs to be taken in the morning. As your iodine levels increase, there should be a corresponding increase in body temperature. Seaweed, kelp and cayenne will help by spiking an immediate increase in body temperature.
1. Armour Natural Thyroid - derived from pigs - prescription required - use as directed by a health care professional. OTC - desiccated thyroid sold in some health food stores. Start off with 16 mg (1/4 grain) and gradually increase under the direction of a health care professional. . 32mg is (1/2 grain) and 64 mg (1 grain). Reduce dosage if blood pressure increases or too much stimulation occurs. Not recommended for persons with congestive heart failure. Homeopathic Thyroid and Adrenal preparations (tablets are preferred for slower absorption) are available from Natra Bio in health food stores and may be sufficient for some persons, if not, go for the Armour Thyroid or desiccated thyroid. Use as directed.
2. Iodine - Tincture of iodine used as a daily or every other day skin test for a few weeks then monitor weekly. Kelp - 2 capsules 1 to 3 times daily or as directed. Seafood - fish, Seaweed - Dulse, Wakame, Kombu, Nori, Arame, Dulse, Hijiki, Purple Laver, Agar-agar, Sea-cabbage, Mekabu and Sea palm. Miso soup made with Wakame is a good choice for a daily meal. Note: Seaweed sources - Gold Mine - 800-475-3663 or Mountain Ark - 800-643-8909
3. Whey protein (or soluble Rice Protein) or cottage cheese or Ricotta (10 grams of proteins per 100 pounds of body weight) before bedtime or as a late evening snack will raise basal temperature in the morning. One scoop of Designer Protein, Optimum, ImmunePro or Immunocal or any other cold ion exchanged membrane processed whey protein in the evening with a glass of pineapple juice is a good choice. Lack of certain amino acids, particularly tyrosine and taurine impairs thyroid function and immune function. Whey is a good source of tyrosine, taurine and glutamine (increases HGH levels while you sleep). If for any reason you are intolerant to whey protein, take a predigested rice protein powder - 15 grams once a day in the evening. Natural calcium and trace mineral supplements like ground marine Coral may be used at the same time.
4. D'Glucarate (Solaray or another brand) - binds estrogen - major detox pathway. Therapeutic dose: One 400 mg capsule every 4 hours each day or eat a raw apple or an orange every 4 hours.
5. Manganese - Best sources: pineapple and oat bran. Suggestion - 1/2 cup of oat bran daily along with 2 glasses or servings of pineapple. Other sources are barley, brown rice, buckwheat and blackberries, beans and other legumes.
6. Cayenne, African Bird Pepper, Chili and other hot peppers. Hot Salsa. Cayenne capsules - 2 or 3 with each meal. Ginger root, curry powder.
7. Selenium - 600 mcg to 1200 daily of Bio-Active Selenium (high-selenium mustard greens) or SelenoMax (high-selenium yeast) - helps convert T4 to T3. Selenium in found in Brazil nuts, fish, seaweed and brewers yeast.
8. Coconut Oil, Coconut milk and fresh coconuts - richest natural source of medium chain triglycerides (MCTs). 3 Tablespoons of coconut oil daily or 1/2 cup of coconut milk or 1/2 a fresh coconut will enhance metabolic function and increase body temperature. Highly recommended to help burn off fat calories in persons who are overweight. If you are not using coconut milk or fresh coconuts, I highly recommend Virgin Coconut Oil imported form rural villages in the Philippines from Tropical Traditions 1-866-311-2626. They have the freshest and most aromatic coconut oil on the planet.
9. DHEA - have blood levels tested and supplement if needed. Men: 25 to 50 yrs old - 25 mg every other day in the AM. Over 50 years old, 25 mg every day. (DHEA helps convert T4 to T3) Women: get tested - General 5 to 10 mg every other day in the AM
10. Royal Jelly - 500 mg freeze dried twice daily; A rich source of pantothenic acid needed for adrenal function and RNA/DNA to support the mitochrondia. (Eat grapefruit only in the morning as it interferes with P450 liver detox enzyme system)
11. Chlorella or Spirulina - 5 grams daily to support Mitochrondia function inside the cells that convert T4 to T3.
12. Transfer Factor and TF+ - Case reports on the Internet indicate improved thyroid function using transfer factor products.
13. Low sodium and high potassium diet
14. Ojibwa Tea - readers report normalization of body temperature after several months of use.
15. Venus Fly Trap extract - 20 drops 2 times daily. Readers report normal body temperature in 2 to 4 months. (domestic sources: Herb Pharm www.herb-pharm.com
16. DETOXIFICATION - Critical to recovery.
a. Whole lemon/olive oil drink has increased body temperature in many persons.
b. Red clover tea- Drink 1 to 3 cups daily with the last one before bedtime - one tea bag per cup. In animal experiments, increased total and free T3, the most active form of thyroxine. Stimulates the P450 liver enzyme detoxification system. Other herbs: Tumeric and/or Hops.
c. Exercise directly increases ATP production and moves toxins out of the body
d. Water - clean - oxygen or ozone added with ionic `trace minerals or coral - drink one large glass every hour. Water is just as critical to move toxins out of the body and clean your inner self as water is needed to wash your hands and outer self.
17. Raw Foods - raw vegetables, fruits and sprouts, Chlorella, Spirulina all enhance the production of energy in the cells whereas foods, especially those cooked at high temperatures stress the white blood cells and can contribute to fatigue. Always include some raw foods with any meal of cooked foods to avoid a stress response. Unless recently harvested, avoid buying room temperature rancid seeds or nuts that are not frozen or refrigerated. GAIA Herbs reports that the herb "Sage" helps normalize body temperature.
Dec 5, 2002. To Michelle at Ojibwa Tea of Life. It's time to let you know what has happened to me since I started taking Ojibwa Tea a little over two months ago. My annual physical was about a week after I started using the tea. Three days after my appointment the doctor called to say my thyroid medication had to be reduced (I've been taking medication for hypothyroidism for over 30 years). He decreased it and I went back 30 days later for another test. Three days later I got another call saying it had to be reduced even more. The third test was a week ago. Yep! It has been dropped again. I figure it will take him about 6 months to get me off the medication altogether.
I am not sure you wanted all this info but I really wanted to let you know what good results I'm getting in areas that I didn't even think about. Had my one year after surgery mammogram last week and everything is clear. I think what I'm trying to say is a great big THANKS for providing the means of getting myself healthier than I've ever been. Happy, Healthy Gale
Note: Michelle Kalevik (Denver, CO) who sent me a copy of Gale's letter can be reached at 303-322-7930 or www.ojibwatea.com for more information. Ojibwa tea is premixed for home brewing and contains sheep sorrel, turkey rhubarb, burdock and slippery elm. The formula is based on a recipe discovered by the Ojibwa Indians in Canada early in the last century. The tea has been used to enhance immunity against Cancer, helps reduce symptoms of Autism in children and is used to heal the intestines.
A newsletter published by Biotics Research Corp, Ogden, UT, March, 1994 indicates the following vegetables may depress Thyroid function: Bok Choy, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Rutabagas and Turnips. No more than two servings per week are recommended for persons with low body temperature. In animal experiments, Brussels sprouts and cabbage were associated with reduced thyroid function. Excessive use of soy products has also been associated in some cases with low thyroid function. Adults who are hypothyroid should limit soy use to Miso or Tempeh only and growing children should avoid soy products altogether. A severe allergy to peanuts in adults is now thought to be associated with their having been feed soymilk as babies.
Both grapefruit and licorice interfere with an enzyme (11-beta-OHSD) that oxidizes cortisol into cortisone, thus elevating cortisol levels. Because of this both grapefruit and licorice can elevate blood pressure. Grapefruit can also interfere with the P450 liver enzyme detoxification pathway. When low thyroid function or toxemia is present, grapefruit should be used only occasionally in the morning and not on a daily basis. On the other hand, if blood pressure is low or normal-low, small amounts of licorice in the form of tea given two or three times each day can strengthen the adrenals. There is no information indicating any problems with using oranges or tangerines and there are ample case reports of benefits from the use of lemons or limes in detoxifying the liver that helps normalize body temperature. . Seafood, grass-fed beef and free-range organic poultry, whey protein and plants from the sea are highly recommended along with spicy foods (cayenne, African bird pepper and chili) to enhance thyroid function and increase metabolism. Recommended article on Thyroid on the Internet from Australia - 24 pages with 102 scientific references.
Found at http://www.holistichealthtopics.com/HMG/thyroid.html.
Note: If the basal temperature is more than 1 degree below normal, then the homeopathic thyroid solution may not be sufficient to bring it back into normal range 97.6 to 98°F and stronger medicines may be required like Armour Thyroid or desiccated thyroid. Persons who have had success in restoring thyroid and adrenal function as well as normal body temperature are encouraged to post their experiences on our Message Board. Take the time to provide all the necessary details like dosage, time of dosage, results and sources - prescribed or OTC. Now read the October and November messages for the rest of this series on thyroid/adrenal metabolism effects on immune function.
It is increasingly apparent that millions of people who suffer from low body temperature and immune dysfunction have exhausted adrenals and impaired detoxification pathways and that these are events that are not isolated but are all interconnected in some way. Plechner has found that low dose cortisol turns off the feedback back loop through the Hypothalamus and Pituitary that results in lower ACTH levels. Lower ACTH reduces demands on the adrenals resulting in reduced adrenal estrogen output. Plechner maintains that the excess adrenal estrogen binds to the thyroid hormones and depresses the immune response. Thyroid hormone is also given and this increases the energy output and ATP production in the cells and so improves the detoxification pathways, antigen production and cellular immune responses. Thyroid hormone helps the liver process toxins and binded hormones.
The theories of Alfred J Plechner D.V.M. that low amounts of free adrenal cortisone combined with too much adrenal estrogen and the subsequent binding of thyroid hormones by estrogen from the adrenals can contribute to a wide range of health related problems has support from other experts. The Great Smokies Diagnostic Laboratory (www.gsdl.com) states in their Adrenal Cortex Stress Profile that "Researchers have proposed that CFS is actually a disease of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis. Unlike ordinary fatigue, however, CFS is typically characterized by low free cortisol levels and adrenal insufficiency. Raising cortisol levels by even small amounts has been found to improve unexplained fatigue symptoms in many CFS patients."
In Depression and Schizophrenia, researchers have found an abnormal circadian rhythm in cortisol levels. Normally, the highest level of cortisol is at 8am in the morning. In Depression, high levels are also found at midnight. The Great Smokies Report states that Cortisol is a major steroid produced by the adrenal gland. High or low levels, along with disrupted amounts in the circadian rhythm, can play a role in many conditions including depression, insomnia, AIDS, aneroxia nervosa, stress, obesity and chronic fatigue. To this may I add food allergies.
Cortisol is not the only hormone produced by the adrenals that also produce DHEA. DHEA is produced from cholesterol and is used in the productions of androgens and estrogens in the adrenal glands, ovaries and testes. A decrease in DHEA has been found in persons with hypothyroidism. Low DHEA levels have been associated with aging, cancer, Alzheimer's, insulin resistance, obesity, high blood pressure and lower sex drive.
If you are lying down and quickly stand up and feel disoriented or a little dizzy, it indicates a possible drop in blood pressure and weak adrenals. Test blood pressure while lying down and again immediately after standing up. If it drops, it indicates weak adrenals.
Signs of overactive adrenals - high blood pressure, anxiety, mood swings, mental instability.
When darkness comes to the eyes at night, the body begins to produce melatonin. Melatonin promotes deeper and more restful sleep. When light strikes the optic nerve in the morning, melatonin production stops. Sometimes, people have a hard time waking up in the morning because of melatonin spillover - that is, a small amount of melatonin continues to be produced after a person wakes up. This lowers the metabolic rate and the person goes through the day feeling half awake. To solve this problem, expose the eyes to a bright light for a few minutes or go outside and take off the sunglasses and take brisk walk for about 15 minutes. This will stop melatonin spillover. More information on melatonin spillover can be found at www.drdebe.com/barriers.htm in an article written by Dr Joseph Debe on "Metabolic Barriers to Weight Loss."
Melatonin is also important as it stimulates the adrenal glands to produce DHEA. DHEA is itself a precursor of other hormones. Melatonin supplements are available OTC. Start off with a small amount like 1 mg and gradually increase its use until sleep is optimal. Exposing part of persons body to the north seeking pole side of a magnet for 30 to 60 minutes before bedtime increases melatonin production. However, I would advise against exposing the person to a magnet or a magnetic pad all night long as this may interrupt sleep.
Cherries have been used to lower uric acid crystals in the body to prevent and treat gout. Cherries have also been found to have other anti-inflammatory properties including Cox 1 and Cox 2 inhibitors for relieving arthritis pain. Recently, sour cherries have been found to contain Melatonin, a hormone thought only to be produced by the pineal gland. (1) "Consuming cherries could be an important source of melatonin," according to Texas scientists. Drinking a glass of sour cherry juice or eating about 20 red tart cherries before retiring at night may assist in inducing a deeper state of sleep and supporting adrenal glandular function. Without actually measuring melatonin levels, I found that the tart red cherries, the kind used to make pie, were more effective than the red sweet eating cherries in promoting a deeper and more restful sleep.
Red tart cherries can be found in many areas year round in the frozen food section. Just thaw out about 1/2 a cup of frozen cherries and eat 20 or 25 as a late evening snack. You can also help yourself by eating 1/2 cup of cottage cheese or Ricotta cheese on rye bread as a source of Glutamine and calcium lactate and this will help you sleep deeper also. I believe these food choices that are all natural are gentle and may be a better choice than a sleeping pill or a melatonin pill both of which have "manufactured" ingredients. When it comes to synthesizing pharmaceutical compounds, I have found that plants usually "get it right" more often than laboratory technicians. If cherries and cottage cheese doesn't help you fall into a deep restful sleep there is always "Ambien" a pharmaceutical sleep aid with a reasonably good reputation.
1. Ralph Moss newsletter No. 13 www.cancerdecisions.com
Synthetic estrogens like Premarin have been prescribed to women for decades to alleviate symptoms of menopause. There is a substantial body of research that estrogens may be linked to some forms of cancer, particularly breast cancer. In fact, one treatment for breast cancer is Tamoxifin, a drug derived from a tree that blocks estrogen receptors in the breast and ovaries but not in other parts of the body where estrogen is needed for important functions like calcium absorption into the bones.
Some natural compounds are proestrogenic in some areas of the body and anti-estrogenic in other areas. There are thousands of natural phytoestrogens in plants and their functions vary. There are good estrogens and bad estrogens. The bad estrogens are mainly synthetic compounds like pesticides and derivatives form plastics that act like estrogens and get in side cells and then do havoc, paralyzing their metabolic activity. Plant phytoestrogens actually block the bad estrogens from getting inside cells.
Lignans: The Life Extension foundation (www.lef.org) in an article by Terri Mitchell (Dec., 2002) writes that lignans nullify strong estrogens and get them out of the body. They do this by increasing a protein called "sex hormone binding protein" or (SHBG). Lignans are found in berries and in flaxseed. Flaxseed is very high in lignans and is well known for its anti-cancer properties. Extra virgin Olive oil also contains lignans and has well known anti-cancer properties as a component of the Mediterranean diet. Resveratrol from the skin of red grapes is a very good phytoestrogen and antioxidant.
Guiroy PJ et al report that in a study of 13,460 animals (steers and heifers) values in weight gain after body fat weight were 564 kg in steer implanted with Revalor-S hormones to promote weight gain versus controls in unimplanted steers whose weight averaged 520 kg. (1) In this experiment it can be seen that in the animals implanted with the hormones (Revalor-S) the weight gain was an average 44 kg per animal or about 100 pounds. At current prices, implanting hormones in steers could add a monetary value of about $50 per steer at on-the-hoof market prices. For a farmer selling 100 steers, that is an extra $5000 in his pocket.
This past fall (Oct, 2002) I invited some friends over for a Stir-Fry. At the time, I was unable to locate any organic beefsteak so I decided to purchase some round steak up at a local grocery store. I was amazed as I began to fry the 2.5 pound steak and noticed water getting into the frying pan in an unusually large quantity. I estimate at least a cup of water ended up in the frying pan. I knew the ceiling wasn't leaking and I surmised that I would end up with a boiled steak stir-fry. I could see it wasn't actually blood but water and lots of it and it was coming out of the beef. I wondered how it got there. A few weeks later, I again bought some beef steak for another stir-fry and noticed the pan fill up with water again. I started to wonder if the grocery store was injecting water into the beef or if hormones given to cattle for weight gain before being sent to the slaughterhouse was responsible for all this water. After all, it is known that estrogen causes sodium and water retention and weight gain in women. Meanwhile for the second time I observed the incredible shrinking steak surrounded by all this water.
To resolve the question that hormonal estrogen might have been given to the cow to increase its weight (water weight) before slaughter, and therefore its dollar value, I searched for and found some organic beef steak in a local health food store. In this 3rd stir fry, I was amazed as I fried the steak that no water at all came out of it and there was far less shrinkage, in fact, very little shrinkage compared to what I now believed was the estrogen-enhanced store steak. Not only was there no water, the meat tasted one heck of lot better. Those cheap sales on beef and steak that come to your door with coupons may look more attractive than the higher cost organic meats but they are not as good a buy as once thought. You have to subtract the water from the steak to see what you really bought. If you find water coming out of your turkey or chicken, then you know the marketers have probably added estrogen to your bird.
Terri Mitchell writing in "Life Extension" Dec 2002, states that "eating hormone treated meat may increase estrogen levels hundreds of times over what a body normally produces. It's disputed at this point just how much synthetic estrogen ends up on the dinner plate. Beef cows in the U.S. are implanted with multiple synthetic hormones, including estradiol, to make them put on weight. There is no withdrawal period for these implants, which are in the cows at the time of slaughter."
Aug 2002: I talked to Mark, a local Wisconsin farmer who told me about his neighbor who recently sold 24 of 25 steers he had. He bragged that he had injected hormones and increased the weight of 24 steers that he sold by over 75 lbs each.. The farmer, his neighbor, had no qualms about injecting the hormones into the steers as long as the government allows it and it puts money in his pocket, but he did not want to eat the hormone injected beef himself. The 25th steer that he kept was not injected with the estradiol hormones.
Mark, who owns a dairy herd for milk production, told me he has never used any hormones including Monsanto's bovine growth hormone to increase milk production because he believes this is plain wrong and unhealthy for the cows. I would not want to drink milk with added hormones myself so why would I want to sell it to others. Mark is a farmer with a conscience. Yet, what about the farmers desperate to make their next mortgage payment?
These farmers may not even realize how they are harming the cows and the people who eat this meat when they inject these hormones into the animals for more rapid weight gain. The public buys steak and milk and does not know from whose farm it came, Marks or his neighbor. As I mentioned earlier, when you cook a steak or hamburger you can tell if the cow from where the meat was derived was given hormones by the water given off in the cooking process. When you fry a pound of organic beef, it fries and the meat browns as the fats are dissolved.
In contrast, the beef with injected hormones literally boils with water in your frying pan. This is because the estrogen causes sodium and water retention. My last and final involvement with hormone-laden meats was a turkey I bought on sale for less that 30 cents a pound. I should have smelled a rat when the price was this low. When I roasted it in my Nesco, I was shocked 2 hours later when I lifted the cover and saw the turkey half covered with water. There was no water in the roasting pan when I started and I knew it came out of the turkey. I ate some of the turkey that night and kept thinking about the hormones they had added to it and it made me more and more angry.
A commercial hormone, estradiol, is being fed to the unknowing public. This is a drug that is being given to the public in the meats they buy at their local stores and at the fast food restaurants like McDonalds and Burger King. Meanwhile, our government has its head buried in the sand over the link between meats fed the public that are loaded with estrogen (estradiol) and the national obesity epidemic. It is an outrage. Where are the lawyers?
Finally, when you consume excess estrogen in your food from commercial beef, pork and poultry injected with growth hormones, the estrogen binds with thyroxine and lowers your metabolic rate. This lowers your body temperature. The estrogen also causes sodium and water retention. This can raise your blood pressure and lower energy production in the mitochondria of the cells. Collectively the effects of excess estrogen from meats in your local grocery store and fast food restaurants are contributing to low body temperature, lowered immune responses to all infectious disease and this includes cancer. Besides all this, excess estrogen in meats is contributing to obesity, high blood pressure, insulin resistance, heart disease and diabetes.
The use of hormone injections in cattle and poultry is banned by the European Union and in many foreign countries. Young girls are having puberty at younger and younger ages. Many children, along with over half the adult population of the United States, are now seriously overweight or obese and about the same number are hypothyroid with low body temperature and suffer from the accompanying health-related adverse effects. For anyone serious about regaining or maintaining their health, it is time to same goodbye not only to junk food but meat contaminated with growth hormones. It is time to get back to basics and buy Organic meats or the equivalent.
1. The effects of implant strategy on finished body weight of beef cattle, by Guiroy PJ et al., J. Anim Sci. 2002 Jul;80(7):1791-800
A book on the health benefits of grass-fed beef called "Why Grass-fed Beef is Best" by Joe Robinson is available at www.eatwild.com or at www.acresusa.com. Essentially, grass-fed beef is high in Omega 3 fatty acids and low in omega 6 which make the fat profile similar to cold water ocean fish. Grass-fed beef is good for energy and a heart-healthy lipid profile. In contrast, the fat in corn-fed or soybean-fed beef is deficient in omega 3 and is lacking in these heart protective ingredients. If the cows or steers ate some corn and soybeans, I wouldn't be overly concerned as long as the bulk of what they ate was grass or in the winter hay. You won't get the same marbled fats with grass as you do with corn fed steers but the meat will be leaner and healthier and when you cook it in a Crock Pot at low temperatures, it will be just as tender as the corn fed beef.
A good source for direct links to many areas of the country is www.organictrader.net. National Organic Directory - 1-800-852-3832 or www.caff.org. 346 pages. Lists farmers and wholesalers nationally. Check with your local library to see if they have or will purchase a copy.
Local resources: Check with several local health food stores and co-ops. Prices for organic meats, dairy products and vegetables vary widely. Go to www.google.com and search for "organic beef" and your state. Examples of search terms: Organic beef NY Organic poultry WI free range chickens TX Beef no hormones FL. I think you have the idea. If you get too many leads, insert the name of a local county in your search terms and this will limit the number of search results.
My experiences: I found that in websites where the meats are "Certified Organic" the prices are $1 to $2 per pound higher than transitional sites or from farmers who have grass-fed beef, have never used hormones or antibiotics but have not gone through the Organic Certification process. I found a local farmer who states he does not use hormones or antibiotics and 1/4 side of beef (about 180 pounds costs) $2.00 per pound cut to your specifications. Although not certified, that is just as good as organic to me and it costs less than the estrogen and antibiotic contaminated stuff in the local grocery store that I refuse to purchase or eat any longer. They can offer it free and I would refuse it. The uninformed public actually pays real hard earned dollars to ruin their health eating this stuff.
If you have access to a freezer and buy from local farmers who don't use hormones, you get the best of both worlds - organic quality and better prices than the big grocery chains stores can give you pound for pound. If you do find some organic products that cost a little more than the contaminated cheaper ones, be thankful that they are even available and know the little extra cost is well worth it as the end result is your improved health, well being and peace of mind.
Notice: the October, November and December monthly reports are posted today, Dec 18, 2002 and are excerpts taken from the new book I expect to have completed and in the printers by Jan 1, 2003 "Immune Restoration Handbook." This series focuses on immune regulating hormones of the thyroid and adrenal glands. I apologize for the delay in posting these articles and wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy and Healthy New Year. Mark Konlee
The adrenals are a pair of ductless glands that sit atop the kidneys in the lower part of the back. New insights on metabolism and hormonal balance indicate that the adrenals and thyroid have a direct role in energy production, well-being, allergies, immune function and many other areas of human health.
An article by Alfred J Plechner DVM and M. Zucker "Unrecognized endocrine-Immune Defects in Multiple Diseases: An Effective Veterinary model may offer Therapeutic promise for human conditions. A mutual friend, Martin Zucker, sparked my interest in Plechners theories and treatment approach. Zucker stated that Alfred Plechner has developed a simple protocol for treating cats, dogs and other pets that have chronic infections and multiple health problems that do not resolve on their own. The protocol involves diagnostic testing for certain thyroid and adrenal hormones followed by low-dose adrenal and thyroid replacement hormones that are used together rather than separately. The result of the treatment is that Adrenal estrogen production declines and stops binding to thyroid hormones. The end result is that thyroxin is freed-up to increase ATP production in the cells. This normalizes body temperature and cell-mediated immune functions improve.
According to Zucker, Plechner treated dozens of cats with FIV infection. Zucker stated that the treatment restored normal immune function. FIV stands for Feline Immunodeficiency Virus. The equivalent in humans is HIV. I asked Zucker if this treatment approach has ever been used in humans to treat HIV? He said that to his knowledge it has not. One wonders what Plechner's protocol would do for HIV and other immune deficiency diseases including CFIDS, candidiasis, cancer, hepatitis, Lyme disease, lupus, MS, allergies and autoimmune diseases. Will it bring us closer to a cure for AIDS or a control that has little or no side effects?
How and why do deficits and imbalances in endocrine hormones affect the immune system? We know that hypothyroidism (low thyroid function) leaves a person vulnerable to one chronic infection after another. In Wisconsin, Dennis, a local PWA, HIV+ since 1983 has had above normal body temperature all his life and after all these years, still no HIV progression. Never on drugs his viral load is still under 1000.
In a separate phone call to Alfred Plechner, I asked him what exactly is his treatment protocol? Here was his reply.
Alfred: The treatment consists of giving low dose thyroid hormones along with low-dose cortisone.
Mark: You mean low-dose thyroid hormones like Armour Thyroid that provide the thyroid hormone "thyroxin" and Cortone that provide one of the adrenal hormones cortisone or its most active form - hydrocortisone?
Alfred: Yes, the equivalent of these drugs for use in humans is available by prescription for household pets and other animals. The amount given varies according to the weight of the animal and the results of diagnostic tests. If I were treating an adult human, I would start off with 1/2 grain of thyroid (about 60 mg) and 5 mg of cortisone twice a day. You need to monitor blood pressure when giving thyroid as too much could cause it to rise as well as increase the pulse rate. The process of increasing thyroid use has to be gradual. Usually the amount of cortisone used is maintained at a low level.
Mark: I can understand the role of the thyroid hormone as it controls cellular metabolism throughout the body, the production of ATP and will help in normalizing body temperature that is critical for restoring cell-mediated immune responses, but cortisone, is it not immunosuppressive?
Alfred: Absolutely, if you take too much of it. The same is true for zinc. Research has shown that too little zinc or too much is immunosuppressive and this has been shown for other nutrients as well. You absolutely need zinc for your thymus gland to function properly and mature T cells but you don't want too much or too little. Experience has shown that 15 to 30 mg daily is a safe and effective dosage range. Now for cortisone, it is a natural anti-inflammatory hormone and the normal healthy human body produces about 40 mg daily. It is well established that too much cortisone is immunosuppressive, in fact, for this reason alone, cortisone has a bad reputation. What is not known is that too little free cortisol is immunosuppressive. There are many people treated with thyroid hormones that get their body temperature back to normal and many who do not. One reason is that part of the Adrenal glands are exhausted and are not producing enough cortisol and another part of the Adrenal glands are producing too much estrogen that binds to thyroxin. The production of cortisol is controlled through a feedback loop. Note: When cortisone is administered, it is converted to the active form called cortisol that is also known as hydrocortisone.
Mark: What is a feedback loop?
Alfred: Cortisol levels are controlled by a classical feedback loop that involves the hypothalamus-pituitary and adrenal glands. Cortisol, the primary glucocorticoid, is produced in the middle Adrenal cortex layer. We have found a problem in cortisol production that comes from two of three layers of the adrenal cortex. The defect can be genetic or due to other causes (nutritional deficiencies or toxins). Cortisol stimulates several processes that serve to increase and maintain normal glucose levels in the blood, exert a potent anti-inflammatory effect and act as a regulating factor for normal immune function.
Mark: Tell me more about this "loop" and how does normalizing cortisol and estrogen levels affect the functioning of the Thyroid gland and help restore normal body temperature and cell-mediated immune function?
Alfred: "The loop is called the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis. Cortisol is secreted in response to a single stimulator: AdrenoCorticoTropic Hormone (ACTH) that is produced by the Pituitary gland. ACTH is itself secreted under control of the Hypothalamus and a hormone it secretes called Corticotropic-Releasing Factor (CRF). Cortisol secretion is suppressed or stimulated by classical feedback loops. When blood concentrations rise above a certain threshold, cortisol inhibits CRF secretion. This, in turn, inhibits ACTH and less ACTH reduces adrenal secretion of cortisol.
"However, when the adrenal gland is unable to produce enough cortisol, or for some reason the cortisol is bound, or otherwise inactive, and thus not recognized by the system, the pituitary continues to produce ACTH in order to extract more cortisol from the adrenals.
"The inner cortical layer, where adrenal estrogen is produced, also responds to ACTH. The result of constant ACTH stimulation in a situation where cortisol is bound or deficient produces a release of adrenal estrogen into the system. As cortisol levels fail to reach the threshold to stop the Hypothalamus from secreting CRF, the CRF stimulates the Pituitary to continue to secrete ACTH. The ACTH tries to get the Adrenal gland to produce cortisol but the same ACTH also stimulates the adrenals to secrete estrogen. As a result of an inability of the adrenals to keep up with demand for cortisol, adrenal estrogen levels build up and cause the following:
1. A histamine-like effect on capillaries, leading to inflammation from blood components spilling into adjacent tissues
2. Binding thyroid hormone
3. Further deregulation of lymphocytes and antibodies. "
Mark: Elevated histamine levels have been linked to elevated interluken 6 levels in many studies. If the histamine like effects are due to actual elevated histamine levels then should not we also expect IL-6 levels to increase also; and if that were the case, would we not also expect a shift in cytokine profiles from TH1 to the less effective TH2?
Alfred: That is a good question. I have not investigated whether or not IL-6 levels are elevated in these conditions but I have found out that IgA levels are low and these low levels in the digestive tract lead to food allergies and sensitivities as well as malabsorption.
Mark: IgA is a TH1 cytokine needed for mucosal immunity. Bifidobacteria Longum has been found to increase the levels of IgA as does vitamin A. What are some of the benefits of supplementing with low-dose thyroid and cortisone you have observed in your clinical practice?
Alfred: After a trial and error period, I have developed a testing and treatment strategy that has proved to safe and highly effective. The central modality is replacement with physiological doses of cortisone preparations to address the root issue of cortisol deficiency. The low-dose cortisone preparations normalize ACTH levels, stop the overproduction of adrenal estrogen and the accompanying estrogen blockade of the thyroid hormones and reregulates the immune system. The use of low dose cortisone long term has also been reported by Jefferies for treating allergies, autoimmune disorders and chronic fatigue syndrome (1).
The second important modality is the simultaneous use of thyroid hormone. The thyroid hormone is needed because the excess adrenal estrogen has bound some of the thyroid hormone. The low dose thyroid hormone helps increase the metabolic rate and the liver to detoxify as well as process the cortisol. By giving cortisol and thyroid replacement simultaneously, the body is able to effectively utilize and process the former (cortisol) without developing side effects.
Once the testing and low-dose hormone therapy is underway, it is very important to follow a hypoallergenic diet and remove foods to which the animal or person is sensitive. After a few weeks, the sensitive foods may be reintroduced one at a time.
Mark: Have you written and published other articles on this subject?
Alfred: In the late 1970's, I wrote 4 articles (2, 3, 4 and 5) on my experiences and theories but found no germane research in veterinary journals to provide guidance.
Mark: As a general guide for someone who has low body temperature, low cortisol and high estrogen, what would be a safe dose with which to start?
Alfred: For cortisol, 5 mg twice a day. Take at 8am and 2pm. Do not take cortisone supplements in the evening or before bedtime, as it will interfere with the REM state of sleep. We want cortisol levels higher when we are awake and low when we are asleep. In normal subjects, cortisol levels are highest at 8am in the morning. Also, melatonin levels that help promote restful sleep should be lowest during the day and increase after dark and before bedtime. A melatonin spillover in the AM can depress the basal metabolic rate all day. This can be turned off by exposing the eyes to bright natural lights for a few minutes or taking a walk outside without wearing sunglasses.
For thyroid, 1/4 grain (about 15 mg) daily to start and after a few weeks if blood pressure and pulse are not elevated to gradually increase the thyroid amount. The cortisol levels are left the same. The hormonal and immune benefits will accrue and be maintained as long as the person stays on the protocol. A physician's prescription is required for both the cortisol and thyroid hormones. The key here is low-dose for successful long-term use as adverse effects may develop from higher doses. Note: Thyroxine is a strong inducer of IgA, a TH1 cytokine needed for intestinal and mucosal health.
Ref: 1. Jefferies, w. McK.Mild adrencortical deficiency, chronic allergies, autoimmune disorders and the chronic fatigue syndrome: a continuation of the cortisone story. Medical Hypothesis, 1994; 42;183-189
2. Plechner A. J., Shannon M., Canine Immune Complex diseases. Modern Veterinary Practice, November 1976; 917
3. Plechner A. J., Shannon M., Epstein A, Goldstein E., Howard E. B., Endocrine-immune surveillance. Pulse. June-July, 1978
4. Plechner A.J., Theory of endocrine-immune surveillance. California Veterinarian, Jan 1979; 12.
5. Plechner A.J. Preliminary observations on endocrine-associated immunodeficiencies in dogs? A clinician explores the relationship of immunodeficiencies to endocrinopathy. Modern Veterinary Practice, 1979; 811
Alfred Plechner states he has treated over 35000 pets in the past 20 years with this protocol. Plechner reports that low cortisol and thyroid hormone lowers T cell panels in the tests. Estrogen can exert a dramatic blocking effect on cortisol and thyroid hormones, and just a slight variation out of normal is enough to cause hormonal and immune complications. In this case, the relationship is usually low cortisol, high estrogen and deregulated immune cells.
In female animals that are not neutered, testing is done when the animals are not in estrus and are not producing high levels of ovarian estrogen.
A. Blood tests:
Testosterone (total and free)
IgA, IgM, IgG
B. Urine Tests:
24 hour urine collection
1. Active cortisol
2. Free T3
3. Free T4
C. Basal Metabolic Temperature Test
Take upon waking (Only accurate in a menstruating women from 2nd to 4th day.) See note below on how to take the basal temperature test in the morning.
A. Blood tests:
Testosterone (total and free)
IgA, IgM, IgG
B. Urine Tests:
24 hour urine collection
4. Active cortisol
5. Free T3
6. Free T4
C. Basal Metabolic Temperature (using a digital thermometer)
Traditional method: Shake down thermometer and place on bed stand the night before. Upon awakening in the morning, while still in bed, place thermometer in armpit for 10 minutes before getting up. Normal basal temperature should be between 97.8 and 98.2°F.
Note: Mercury thermometers are no longer being sold due to the hazards of mercury should a thermometer break. A convenient digital thermometer called a "Talking Thermometer" is available from Walgreens for about $10. Just click the button and wait for 3 beeps then it is ready to use. The thermometer will talk to you and tell you your temperature when it stabilizes. Upon awakening, the basal temperature may be taken under the tongue. Manufacturers of thermometers state that the basal temperature taken under the tongue can be done faster and with the same accuracy as under the armpit.
Because of its fast readout, the Talking Thermometer and other digital thermometers will not give you an accurate reading under the armpit and should be taken under the tongue instead. The normal basal temperature range under the tongue upon awakening in the morning is from 97.6 to 98°F or .2 degrees less than the armpit reference range. A basal temperature of 1/2 degree below normal indicates mild hypothyroidism whereas 2 degrees or more below normal is quite serious hypothyroidism.
Testing: National Veterinary Diagnostic Services, Lake Forest, CA 949-859-3648) Check with them to find out about testing of human blood and urine specimens for hormonal levels. Other private labs also offer these types of tests.
1. The presence of high estrogen and low immunoglobulins especially IgA will indicate to the clinician that the cortisol is at least partially inactive.
2. Binding of thyroid hormone by estrogen can be indicated when both T3 and T4 test normal and the patient has these symptoms - excessive sleeping, sluggishness, hyperkeratosis of the nose and pads of the feet; excess pigmentation in skin of ventral abdomen; high cholesterol; high triglycerides, underweight or overweight.
3. Suppression of IgA, IgM and IgG but especially IgA. Plechner states that the role of cortisol as an immune regulatory agent has been grossly neglected. An unknown, but probably very large percentage of cats and dogs produce inadequate or bound cortisol as a result of contemporary breeding practices primarily, and, to a lesser degree, stress, aging, poor diet, and other environmental inputs. The cortisol defect triggers a trail of biochemical events that produces elevated estrogen, bound thyroid hormone, and deregulation of major immune system cells. The experience with animals and the work of Jefferies and Plechner and his followers strongly argues for testing these hypotheses in humans that may produce major diagnostic and treatment breakthroughs. Plechner uses plant derived cortisone in low doses and can provide a source for health care professionals if they prefer to use plant derived cortisone. I would recommend that health care professionals write for complete copy of his 9 page treatise.
Alfred J Plechner, D.V.M.
California Animal Hospital
1736 S Sepulveda Blvd Suite C
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Ph No 310-473-0969 Fax 310-473-6344 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Note: There are several reports on the internet that natural thyroid works better and with fewer side effects than their manufactured alternatives like Synthroid. If you decide to try a natural formula, avoid any with "pituitary" gland extract, as this is the gland that can spread mad cow disease from infected cows. Pituitary of bovine origin is one glandular to avoid in all supplements. Pituitary of porcine origin (pigs) is not known to contain any risk factors.
Among prescription drugs for the thyroid, there are several choices of brand names but actual two groups - natural or synthetic. Laboratory made synthetic brands like Synthroid or Levothroid only contain the T4 hormone whereas natural Armour Thyroid that is derived from pigs (porcine) contains all 4 types of thyroid hormone, T1, T2, T3 and T4. The problem with the synthetic brands of thyroid is that many patients cannot convert T4 to the active form T3. This is often due to deficiencies of selenium that is required to convert T4 to T3 but could be due to deficiencies of other nutrients like L-tyrosine, iodine, manganese, glutathione levels, Vitamin A, certain B vitamins, C and E.
Most doctors will prescribe a synthetic pharmaceutical thyroid like Synthroid instead of the natural Armour Thyroid that is actually desiccated thyroid glandular of porcine origin. Several case reports on the Internet indicate that hypothyroid persons do better on Natural Thyroid than Synthroid. For those of you who surf the Internet, the source on Thyroid under Holistic Health Topics has a 24 page article on hypothyroidism with 102 scientific references located at http://www.holistichealthtopics.com/HMG/thyroid.html.
The Broda Barnes Foundation continues to educate doctors on the proper use of hormones and can provide references to physicians in your area.Broda Barnes MD Res. Fdn PO Box 98 Trumbull, CT 06611
ph No. 203-261-2101 Web Site: http://www.brodabarnes.org
Another list of local physicians trained in using natural hormones can be founds at http://www.wilsonssyndrome.com.
1. Hypothyroidism by Broda Barnes and Lawrence Galton, Harper and Row, NY
2. The Miracle of Natural Hormones, by David Brownstein MD Medical Alternatives Press 888-647-5616 www.drbrownstein.com. In his book, Dr. Brownstein has found that when the adrenal output of hydrocortisone is very low, thyroid supplementation may make symptoms worse unless small amounts of cortisone (10 to 20 mg daily) are first administered. Brownstein states that normal cortisol levels are needed to help T4 convert to the active form T3.
In an article on the Adrenalcortex Stress profile at Great Smokey Diagnostic Laboratory website www.gsdl.com, they state that chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is actually a disease of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and add "Unlike ordinary fatigue, however, CFS is typically characterized by low free cortisol levels and adrenal insufficiency. Raising cortisol levels by even small amounts has been found to improve unexplained fatigue in many CFS patients." Plechner is not alone in his view and experience that small physiological doses of cortisone relieves numerous symptoms including fatigue and promotes the ability of the immune system to control infectious disease. (1)
Researchers have found that melatonin increases cortisol levels in aged but not young women (2). Taking melatonin before bedtime may help resolve fatigue related to cortisol deficiency in some persons. As tart cherries are high in natural melatonin, drinking a glass of sour cherry juice before bedtime may increase melatonin levels and enhance deeper sleep and adrenal function. To maintain harmony with the circadian cycle, tart cherries or cherry juice should be consumed only in the evening.
1. Jeffries WM, Mild adrenocorticol deficiency, chronic allergies, autoimmune disorders and the chronic fatigue syndrome: a continuation of the cortisone story. Med Hypotheses 1994;42(3):183-9
2. Cagnacci A et al, Melatonin enhances cortisol levels in aged but not young women. Eur J Endocrinol 1995;133:691-5
Greece: S.G., a reader with HIV who states he has taken 400 mcg daily of L-selenomethionine plus 200 mcg daily of selenium aspartate (600 mcg total) in a multiple vitamin/mineral supplements for the past 12 months, reports that a recent blood serum test for selenium finds it at 77 mcg/l which is very low. This patient, who uses a drug cocktail for HIV, is asymptomatic.
This is the first person that used L-selenomethionine and selenium aspartate, both inorganic forms made in a laboratory, to report the results of a blood serum test for selenium. Based on this poor performance, it is possible that either a lack of absorbability of these amino acid chelates or rejection of the defective compounds by the immune system is the reason why no one has reported any benefits to date from the man-made selenium compounds.
Manufacturers of amino acid chelates that are widely used in dietary supplements claim that these chelated minerals absorb better and are more bioavailable. However, in spite of these claims, not one of 14 persons using selenomethionine even in very high doses has reported any anecdotal or laboratory benefits and the only person to actually test for selenium levels after using the selenium amino acid chelates has a dismal level of only 77 mcg/l.
Where is the scientific proof that these man-made amino acid chelates are effective dietary supplements? Someone needs to investigate why there has been such a catastrophic failure in the manufacturing process of the selenium amino acid chelates. So far, only organic selenium compounds produced by nature and found only in whole food sources (high-selenium mustard greens, high-selenium yeast, Brazil Nuts, seafood etc) have demonstrated efficacy and safety.
Writing on our Message Board, a 14th person who thought they were using an organic selenium developed side effects (numbness) from using L-seleno methionine at just 900 mcg daily. The product he used was made by Solaray a company that also sells a brand I endorse called Bio-Active Selenium that is made from greenhouse mustard greens grown in a selenium enriched broth. Solaray sells all 3 types of selenium, high-selenium mustard greens, high-selenium yeast and the synthetic compound "called L-Selenomethionine" that Dr Bert Ensley of Nucycle Therapy Products told me is made in a laboratory by combining water with elemental selenium and L-methionine and then spray drying it.
The methodology used in making this so-called "amino acid chelate" is so simple that it would be laughable if it were not for the fact that this product passes for an amino acid chelate and is likely doing more harm than good. The reality is that what is called an amino acid chelate is not what the label claims it to be. It is really just a mixture of L-methionine and elemental selenium. When it is spray dried, the applied heat also denatures the amino acid. What is sold as a dietary supplement even with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) on the label is, in my opinion, nothing more than garbage - a mixture of a heat damaged amino acid with some form of elemental selenium mixed in. The companies who manufacture and peddle these products have no research on them to demonstrate bio-availability, efficacy or safety. Readers should be aware that there is no law against manufacturing and marketing dietary supplements that don't work.
CA: 8/13/02: Jack called to tell about his experiences with the Miraculous Water that had arrived Aug 9th. He used two capfuls daily with the accompanying prayers. Placed some of the water on the tumor on his right leg that was painful and the size of a silver dollar. In 4 days, it shrunk to a half-dollar size and the pain is now mostly gone. Before Aug 9th, he would wake up several times each night to urinate. Now, he sleeps through the night without waking up. August 23rd: Jack calls to tell me that the tumor on his leg has now shrunk to the size of a quarter. He says his overall health continues to improve. August 30th update: Jack called to tell me the tumor is down to the size of a dime. He said: "The water is miraculous .I feel more energy than I have in a long time . my colon health has improved too."
In her visitations to the poor uneducated peasant, Rosa Quattrini, in the 1960's, the Virgin Mary stated that the Eternal Father has made the water available for everyone for all generations. A golden ray of light was seen to pierce the ground and marked the spot where the well was to be dug.
The water is not only available to help Catholics, but all Christians of all denominations, anyone of any race, ethnic group or religion including atheists and all non-believers. Jack Fristoe is not a Catholic. He belongs to a non-denominational church. He is 73 years old. He told me when he first used the water it caused a detox effect and gave him diarrhea for a few days. He said he uses only about 3 drops a day along with the 2 sets of prayers in the instructions. Early in August, Jack offered to send a small bottle of the water to me and I agreed. He had just ordered 2 large bottles of the water and they had arrived quickly. The small bottle arrived around August 12th, ten days after my sister-in-law, Edith, had passed away from bone cancer (August 2nd).
Yes, Edith had used the last remaining drops from a bottle half full in the first two weeks of April and her condition seemed to improve even though her physician told he could do nothing. About the time she ran out of the water, she was spiking fevers, a sign of immune activation. In May, I asked Lisa to send the water and she said she did around the middle of the month. Yet from that point on to sometime in August, I could not reach her by mail or phone and I left several messages. The water did not arrive. In August, when I finally spoke to Lisa, she said she was shocked to find out that the shipment had been returned to her after two months. All along, she thought I had received it. She also said that her daughter had accidentally erased my message on her answering machine.
Note: A few persons have written to us saying they had not received the miraculous healing water they had ordered earlier this spring. If you haven't received your order by now, call the San Damiano Center at 508-651-2645. We recently learned that a new employee at the Natick, MA, post office was recently fired from his job for misplacing large amounts of mail some of which was supposed to be delivered to the San Damiano Center in the past 3 months. As reported to us, the employee threw much of the mail away and went home early while getting paid. Some of the mail was found floating in a nearby river. (Is this the work of the Devil or what?)
Also we have located the Internet site for the San Damiano apparitions where the well is located. The site is called City of the Roses, the name of a future spiritual healing center to be built. It is http://www.cittadellrose.it/. If you are going to Italy this site has a series of maps that give the exact location of San Damiano di Piacenza. On the home page, click the arrow to the right of the word "home" at the bottom of the page to bring up the 4 maps. If you are planning a trip there, please contact me at email@example.com I would appreciate hearing from you before you go. I have some requests to ask of whoever is planning a trip there.
Early in August, I had called the City of the Roses in San Damiano, Italy, to see if anyone there would ship some water to us. I also had written to them a week earlier. A member of the clergy answered the phone and spoke Italian. I talked to him in English and neither of us could understand a word of what the other was saying.
A few days later, a reader in England who speaks both English and Italian called the City of the Roses center for me. She found out that they do not ship water out to anyone, because if they did this for one person, they would have to do it for everyone. The water is free at the well and can be drawn freely any day of the week. You would think that someone in the area would draw the water and offer to ship it out for a fee. A search on Google finds no such place exists, at least not on the Internet. Our contact says she plans to move to Rome next year and has offered to drive the 600 mile round trip to San Damiano and draw several gallons of water from the well and send it to us by boat.
September 16th - The Miraculous Water finally arrives! After two separate shipments were returned to sender by the Post Office, Lisa Custodio finally sent several bottles of the water by Federal Express. About one quart and a half dozen small bottles arrived along with 2 books containing the messages of the apparitions to Rosa Quattrini from 1966 forward.
A Special Thanks to St Michael whom I asked to guard the shipment and to Federal Express for their reliable service. We will be sending out the water in 2 oz bottles to persons with dire needs or emergencies until we run out or more water becomes available. We have designed labels for a 2 oz bottle that has a dropper dispenser. The label on front is a colored painting of the Madonna that is laminated. One bottle should last a person about 2 months. Instructions are included on how to use the water sublingually or topically. If it is not an emergency, contact the San Daminao Ctr (508-651-2645) and ask for an Order Form that lists the water and other articles.
The irony of it all if that while it has been a real struggle to get any of this water since April, for 4 years previous, I had a several bottles of it here and just ignored it. It wasn't until Lisa called and told me of some of the most incredible cures I have ever heard of that my interest in this water took a significant turn - like the awakening of a winter bear from hibernation. I am on a mission to help distribute this water to whoever needs it, but first I have to get it here.
I am now convinced that the water from this well in San Damiano has the power to cure hundreds of millions of people from almost every illness of civilization. Presently, there is only one place on the planet that will ship out the water for a donation and that is the San Damiano Ctr in Natick, MA. For starters, there should be a distribution center on each of the 7 continents and eventually in each country with local language translations of the prayers and messages.
I am using the water daily, just 3 drops and say the prayers. I find the water has a very powerful detox effect. The water itself acts like it has a high viscosity and behaves differently than regular water when attempting to fill a jar making it somewhat more difficult with the water sometimes suspended in a funnel over an empty bottle and refusing to flow into it - sort of defying gravity. I never dealt with water before that acted like it had a mind of its own. Meanwhile, I am interested in hearing from anyone who has used the water and their experiences with it.
A phone call to me from a reader about a common herb called Sutherlandia, that in gaining in popularity in Africa, as a low-cost treatment for HIV, cancer and other conditions, sparked my interest as there is substantial information about this herb on the world-wide-web. A "Google" search recently found 817 links to "Sutherlandia.". Pharmacology: contains L-Canavanine, Pinitol, GABA, SU1 and asparagines. The following are excerpts taken from www.sutherlandia.org.
"Improvements in appetite, weight-gain, sleep, exercise tolerance, anxiety and overall sense of well-being can be expected. Researchers anticipate that there will be a delayed progression of HIV into AIDS, and actual remission of the disease is hoped for. This will require compliance of appropriate does of Sutherlandia to take on an ongoing basis, in addition to meticulous attention to diet. Alcohol and recreational drugs should be avoided.
"Most wasted patients show an increase in weight within six weeks of starting treatment. Weight gains of 10-15 kg (20 to 40 lbs) have been documented in wasted cancer and AIDS patients. Interestingly, weight-gain is typically not seen in people without underlying wasting conditions.
"Improvements in CD4 counts and decreases in the viral load in AIDS patients taking Sutherlandia have been reported by clinicians in South Africa and Australia. These promising clinical anecdotes need to be validated by an independent controlled clinical trial, and cooperation in this regard is under discussion with the Medical Research Council of South Africa.
"CD4 and Viral Load changes reported by clinicians in HIV+ patients treated with Sutherlandia tablets were produced by the South African company Phyto Nova.
"These preliminary reports are not a substitute for results from a controlled clinical trial, but support the hypothesis that Sutherlandia is a profound immune stimulant and anti-viral plant."
23 May 2001. Patient not on anti-retroviral drugs. Starting CD4 was 340. After two months of Phyto Nova Sutherlandia at a dose of 300mg twice a day, CD4 increased to 533.
18 June 2001 Patient not on anti-retroviral drugs. Patient's viral load decreased from 25000 to 5000 after on two months Phyto-Nova Sutherlandia at a dose of 600mg 12 hours apart.
18 June 2001 In March 2001 the patient had been off antiretroviral drugs for 2 months, and his viral load was 57000 and CD4 was 480. In May Sutherlandia was added to other naturopathic remedies. In June, after almost 6 weeks on 300mg Phyto Nova Sutherlandia twice a day, his viral load had fallen to 9,200 and his CD4's had risen to 647.
4 July 2001. Patient not on anti-retroviral drugs. Viral load at start 28000, after 2 months of Phyto Nova Sutherlandia at a dose of 600 mg twice a day, the viral load was 13000.
8 August 2001. Patient not on anti-retroviral drugs. Starting CD4 407, after six weeks Phyto Nova Sutherlandia : CD4 was 478. Starting viral load 246,600, after six weeks Phyto Nova Sutherlandia : viral load was 88,153
13 September 2001. Patient not on anti-retroviral drugs. CD4 of 90 in October 2000 when patient began Phyto Nova Sutherlandia. In January 2001 the CD4 was 213. The patient used Sutherlandia from November 2000 to end of May 2001, and then re-started Phyto Nova Sutherlandia in August 2001. In August 2001 the CD4 was 240, and viral load was 7700.
Cancer, reported especially useful in treating wasting syndrome in cancer patients - weight gain reported of 2 to 3 pounds per week until weight normalizes. Reported to decrease anxiety and elevate mood. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome - reduces fatigue and improves feelings of well-being. Sutherlandia has been used to treat all kinds of herpes infections and shingles. Reported to help treat rheumatoid arthritis and reduce blood sugar in diabetics, lowers blood pressure.
Side effects from the herb: All I could find is a report of mild diarrhea in a few cases - probably a detox effect. A toxicity study shows the herb to be safe. Where to learn more: Search for "Sutherlandia" at www.google.com. Two readers recently have started using Sutherlandia - one tablet twice daily after meals. They ordered it from www.biogenesis.com.
The current 8th edition of How to Reverse Immune Dysfunction is now out of print and will not be republished. A paperback edition of a new book that will be perfect bound and updated through September 2002 will be published for the first time. The book will contain about 400 pages and have an index and it will have a name change and be called "Immune Restoration Handbook." Because it will be a major revision, work on the fall issue of Positive Health News will be delayed until mid-October. By the way, Positive Health News is also history and will be replaced by the first issue of the Journal of Immunity late in October.
The new Immune Restoration Handbook will cost $19.95, which is $5 less than the current book. Book-rate postage is $3.00 per order. If ordering 6 or more copies for resale or for gifts, there is a 40% discount. Advanced orders for the first edition of this new book are now being accepted. Note: The first issue of the Journal of Immunity should be out in February, 2003.
by Jerry Deutsch
Quercetin is a flavinoid found in fruits and vegetables such as grapes, grapefruit, and onions. It is responsible for the yellow pigment in such foods and is one of many flavonoids that offer medicinal benefit both dietarily and supplementally in pill form. Quercetin is uniquely more potent, however, than other flavonoids in the mitigation of allergic reactions of both a chronic and acute nature. Its ability to enzymatically regulate allergic mechanisms in humans is well documented and understood.
The side effect profile and carcinogenicity of quercetin have been studied with excellent outcome. Some of the areas of allergy for which quercetin has important therapeutic value include: perennial rhinitis (pollen, dust mite and other inhalants), asthma (both extrinsic and intrinsic), atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, and food sensitivities.
The biochemical activity of quercetin upon tissues affected by antigens (pollen, foods, mites etc.) lies in its ability to stabilize mast cells in the nasopharangeal, bronchial and gastrointestinal regions. Several mechanisms are at play whereby quercetin is able to intervene in the mediation of immunoglobulin E sensitivities (IgE). Under allergic conditions mast cells degranulize, releasing histamine (1); also debris from cell apoptosis causes the migration of phagocytic leukocytes to the effected areas. The end result is one of escalating inflammation, and in asthma specifically, the constriction of airways. In rhinitis, exudate of nasal epithelium is the by-product of mast cell degranulation and the accompanying symptoms of runny nose, congestion and sneezing.
Quercetin appears to have a dose dependent protective effect upon tissue. One study examined the adhesion of platelets to micro vascular endothelial cells at various concentrations of quercetin. In this study inhibition was linearly correlated to the concentration levels of quercetin applied (10, 20 and 40 mol/L yielded inhibition rates of 10.5%, 20.0% and 42.2% respectively) Even more impressive perhaps was the fact that pretreated cells had even less affinity to adhere, suggesting that Quercetin has strong prophylactic value. (2)
Though this study may have important implication for atherogenic disease process it also points to the therapeutic value Quercetin has as an anti-inflammatory agent in allergy. For those who suffer from perennial hay fever problems or any circumstance where exposure to a potentially irritating antigen can be foreseen (e.g. dust, mould, food), the implementation of Quercetin ahead of time may lend tremendous protection in such events.
The case for utilization of Quercetin in the treatment of asthmatic conditions is quite strong. In guinea pig models Quercetin has strongly shown the capacity to reduce bronchial reactions by more than 70% (3). 3-0 Methyl Quercetin (3-MQ) has been isolated as the active component of the Chinese botanical Rhamnus nakaharai (also known as Hayata). At Taipei Medical University, 3-MQ has been studied for its relaxant effect upon histamine-induced precontractions of guinea pig trachea. The pathway through which this relaxant effect is achieved is by its reduction of cumulative Ca2+ of the tracheal tissue. (4)
Quercetin has a strong sparing effect upon vitamin C. In one study conducted by J B Park, Quercetin specifically prevented the intracellular uptake of dehydroascorbate, allowing extra cellular homocysteine to reduce it back to ascorbic acid (5). It is this relationship that probably extends its therapeutic effect on several allergic conditions since the oxidative cascade of events that lead or contribute to inflammation can be reversed by the adequate presence of vitamin C as a reducing agent in all tissues (6).
Another study challenges the work of J B Park somewhat. At the Instituto di Chimica Biologica in Urbino, Italy, researchers contend that reduced glutathione (GSH) production is directly enhanced by the presence of Quercetin (7). This model used rabbit red blood cells and dehydroascorbate (DHA), and it specifically denies the ability of Quercetin to reduce the uptake of dehydroascorbate intracellularly. If this is the case then it is the increased GSH which spares vitamin C, and thus Quercetin's role is indirect upon vitamin C but equally of significance.
Increased GSH is very important as an immunomodulator and detoxifier in many diseases and specifically acts as a mucolytic agent (8) which can reduce mucous plugs in the patient with bronchial allergy or asthma, thereby improving breathing. So again, Quercetin has another important relationship that impacts allergy directly if it does indeed enhance GSH production as Italian researchers have demonstrated in the red blood cells of rabbits.
Quercetin has been studied with ultraviolet A as well for its ability to reduce oxidative stress and reactive oxygen species (ROS). At Osmangazi University in Turkey, Quercetin was administered intraperitoneally in rats prior to irradiation. Controls not injected with Quercetin had significantly lower levels of glutathione peroxidase, glutathione reductase, catalase and superoxide dismutase (9). This study lends great weight to the importance of protective enzyme activity in the allergic patient and the benefit that Quercetin can give. If the individual with predisposed allergy has optimally functional anti-oxidant enzyme activity, they will be less likely to have allergic reactions due to the protection afforded the phospholipid portion of cell membranes by such upregulated enzymes (10).
In addition free radical pathology will generally be reduced, protecting the individual from infection and chronic diseases as well as allergy and inflammation. In diseases of the skin that have at least a partial allergic etiology, Quercetin is a valuable adjuvant to control chronic and acute flare ups.
Eczema is a condition that includes varying degrees of itching (pruritis), dry thickened skin, with accompanying inflammation. As in many forms of asthma and rhinitis, eczema appears to have an IgE mediated pathogenesis, and histamine is clearly involved with the presence of sensitized mast cells (11).
Researchers at Mukogawa Women's University in Japan studied mice models of atopic dermatitis using extracts of Impatiens Balsamina, containing Quercetin-3-0-rutinoside. Both mice with established dermatitis and mice pretreated with the Impatiens Balsamina had significant reduction in pruritic symptoms and scratching behavior response (12). This study concurs with the endothelial adhesion study cited previously in that Quercetin provides both a therapeutic effect in established disease but also is a promising prophylactic agent in individuals with chronic atopic dermatitis.
Because Quercetin clearly reduces histamine release, it should also be considered essential to the treatment of hives as well since this is perhaps the most clearly histamine induced reaction to skin sensitization. Though I was unable to uncover any studies that used quercetin in the treatment of hives specifically, I did find one study at the University College of London that clearly parallels the activity of sodium cromoglycate to that of Quercetin.
The common biochemical pathway that they share in stabilizing mast cells is through inhibition of Ca2+ exocytosis (13). Sodium cromoglycate is used as a pharmacological agent to treat hives, and therefore it would seem that Quercetin is a potentially better alternative since it offers a lower incidence of side effects for the sensitive patient.
Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that is associated with decreased levels of cyclic AMP (cAMP) in cells of effected regions. This may in part be due to oxidative mechanisms since there appears to be a correlation between increased superoxide dismutase (SOD) and the rehabilitation of cAMP levels in psoriatic cells (14). In the previously cited Turkish study on ultraviolet A and Quercetin it was demonstrated that Quercetin has a protective effect upon the anti-oxidant enzymes including SOD. In addition, Quercetin has been demonstrated to relax KCl induced contractile rat uterine muscle tissue by upregulating intracellular cAMP levels (15). These two pathways, that of anti-oxidant enzyme regulation and cAMP modulation make Quercetin a logical choice for the treatment of psoriasis. The improved levels of SOD can reduce inflammation and the modulation of cAMP can control the tendency toward hyperplasia of skin cells in psoriasis.
The last area of consideration for Quercetin, that of the gut, is perhaps the most significant and relates to the effect it has upon the other peripheral tissue. Orally administered Quercetin is known to be readily absorbed in significant quantities in the gut; some appreciable amount remains in the lumen and is likely responsible for protective effect upon enterocytes and mast cells (16, 17). It is this protective effect that is so vital to intestinal permeability and for allergy control. By keeping the gut integrity intact, antigens from foods are less likely to pass into the blood undigested. This prevents both the infiltration locally of histamine mediated reactions at the site of the gastrointestinal tract (18) as well as the production of circulating immune complexes (CICs) which are often related to chronic systemic allergy (e.g. eczema, rhinitis etc).
Because Quercetin protects enterocytes and stabilizes mast cells in the GI tract, it can be expected that GI disturbance from potentially allergenic foods might be minimized.. Therefore patients who complain of multiple food sensitivities might expect to receive benefit from Quercetin taken before meals. Also healing of previously injured gut mucosa along with improvement in assimilation should be another benefit of therapy with Quercetin.
Many of the models that I found in studies on Quercetin involved animals; moreover these studies often utilized Quercetin in parenteral forms. Therefore it could be argued that Quercetin still needs to be examined in humans more extensively and via oral administration. However, the biological pathways that were delineated are similar or identical to that of human physiology. I found absolutely no incidence or record of side effects in my search on MedLine for Quercetin; nor could I find an LD50 level in animal models for Quercetin. In Nutritional Influences on Illness, Werbach cites a study of possible carcinogenicity in rats with bladder cancer. He points out though that this study failed to be replicated and that the strain of rats used have a very high spontaneous rate of bladder cancer.
Though it would be difficult to make equivalencies for dosaging of Quercetin based on the studies I found in my search, general dosage for Quercetin is suggested at 250-500 mg. 2-4 times per day depending upon severity of symptoms as well as the condition being treated. I have personally used Quercetin for over a decade with predictably excellent results in many of the conditions I have discussed. My clinical experience with Quercetin concurs with the work of the Italian team in Urbino. I believe it significantly augments the therapeutic nature of N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC) by increasing levels of reduced glutathione (GSH).
Though I have no objective laboratory data to espouse this, I believe that Quercetin's vitamin C sparing capability alone would not have the broad reaching effect I have observed in patients with serious immune dysfunction. When used alone with vitamin C it is not as deep acting as when it is combined with the GSH precursor, NAC.
I have only observed one person to be intolerant of Quercetin in my work through the years. It is rare to find a nutrient this broad acting and well tolerated in my opinion. I work with some of the most sensitive individuals with various auto-immune diseases and chemical sensitivities. In the desert southwest (New Mexico) we have serious pollen problems in the winter months due to Juniper tree; Quercetin is the mainstay of treatment for many people who are seriously afflicted with rhinitis, asthma and allergic pharyngitis during this season. If it used in advance of the onset of pollination, results are typically better.
I have also employed Quercetin in protocols for Seborrhoeic Dermatitis with very good effect. Typically it is used with essential fatty acids (omega-3), vitamin B6, magnesium, zinc and others nutrients, depending upon the patients overall presenting symptoms. Additionally I use Quercetin for food allergies and in dysbiosis as discussed above with excellent results.
More and more persons are becoming seriously afflicted with varying degrees of food and inhalant sensitivities as the petrochemical industry is extending into every arena of life from work and living environment to our food and water sources. Other factors such as stress and the over use of antibiotics and other prescription drugs, as well as vaccinations may contribute to the dysregulation of individuals immune systems. Therefore, in clinical nutrition we should look to dietary modulation to optimize the persons immune system as well as to supplements from botanical sources such as Quercetin for intervention and protection against an array of allergic conditions
Correspondence: Jerry Deutsch CNC, 147 Calle Ojo Feliz, Sante Fe, NM 87505 Phone no. 505-955-0922
Case Report: Ron M is 69 yrs old and has been using Synthroid for the past 20 years due to an under-active thyroid (hypothyroidism). When increasing his selenium intake from 200 mcg daily to 1000 mcg, he developed fever, severe headaches diarrhea and lost weight.
As selenium is well known to increase the conversion of thyroid hormone T4 to the active form T3, Ron apparently developed a short bout of hyperthyroidism caused by an excess of active Thyroid hormones. He stopped both the Synthroid and the selenium and his symptoms have disappeared. He now has a choice - to either reduce the amount of selenium he takes or reduce the amount of Synthroid he uses.
Persons using thyroid hormones are advised to increase selenium use each week in small increments of 100 mcg daily and have their physician monitor blood levels of thyroid hormones with each incremental change to determine if and how much the use of the Thyroid hormones should be reduced. It is possible that in some persons the use of higher doses of selenium will eliminate the need for Thyroid medication.
Detroit, MI. A 15 yr old girl born with HIV recently had a platelet count of 50, had failed to tolerate any of the existing drug combinations and was near death. Her mother gave her three packets a day of Bio Pro Thymic Protein A that is dissolved under the tongue. Within 10 days, the platelet count increased to 150 and then after 30 days to over 300. This form of thymic protein is laboratory cultured and came from a single healthy calf in the early 1990's. There is no risk of contacting mad cow disease using Thymic Protein A. The girl is now on VIREAD and 3TC for treating the HIV and tolerates it well.
There will be an update in the September monthly report. Presently the latest information in found in the July report of this newsletter (last month). The best choices in selenium supplements are natural and organic compounds that are coming from whole food sources and not synthesized in a lab (sodium selenite or selenomethionine as an amino acid chelate). L-selenomethioine has a been a complete failure in 12 case reports (no benefits reported) and with 6 of the 12 also reporting side effects.
Readers to this website report significant benefits from high-selenium mustard greens (Bio-Active Selenium by Solaray or Selenium Cruciferate by Ecological Formulas). Also SelenoMax, a high seleniun yeast made by a reputable company. Consider "SelenoMax" by Source Naturals. Two persons have also reported a reduction in yeast related problems using "Activated Selenium" from Jarrow Formulas. Check out the Message Board for more information.
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Keep Hope Alive, PO Box 270041, West Allis, WI 53227 www.keephope.net firstname.lastname@example.org
The issue of what kind of selenium compound is safe and effective in helping to restore immune function has been an open question for several years. In this issue, I believe we are making some real progress toward resolving this outstanding question.
Since beginning this series of articles on selenium in September of 2001, I have consistently recommended food sources of selenium, especially Brazil Nuts, along with selenium bound to either Methionine or Cysteine and to avoid sodium selenite because of toxicity issues. With this month's report, we are no longer recommending L seleno-methionine (laboratory made) as a source of selenium because of reported side effects and the absence of any noticeable benefits. Yes, we have changed our mind about this manufactured source of selenium.
L-selenomethionine (SeM) as an amino acid chelate is the most widely sold source of selenium available in health food stores, the other being sodium selenite. SeM is made in a laboratory under proprietary methods that bond selenium to the amino acid L-methionine. Albion is a manufacturer of L-selenomethionine and other amino acid chelates and wholesales its products to dietary supplement manufacturers.
With daily usage of L-selenomethionine as high as 1800 mcg over a period of several weeks and months, there is no evidence that fungal and staph infections are decreasing, no evidence that white blood cell counts or CD4 counts are increasing and no evidence of other tangible benefits except for a few published studies that indicate a small decline in mercury levels for a dose as low as 100 mcg daily.
In contrast, the use of Brazil Nuts, the world's richest natural source of selenium or supplements made from high selenium mustard greens (Ecological Formulas or Solaray) or broccoli as in "Activated Selenium" by Jarrow Formulas, we are getting reports of increasing WBC and CD4 counts, the disappearance of fungal and staph infections, greater energy and well being and in one case reported in this issue - an end to chronic fatigue syndrome. Most of these results are occurring very rapidly - often within the first week of use.
In five cases where the Albion source of seleno-methionine was consumed in high daily doses ranging from 1200 to 1600 mcg, there are no beneficial results to report. Two of the cases were CFIDS related and 3 HIV related with two of the three HIV+ persons also using drug cocktails. Nothing in the lab results of any of these three cases indicates any increase in WBC counts or CD4 or CD8 counts or even a decrease in the viral load. In all five cases, none of the participants used any other form of selenium other than the synthetic L-selenomethionine that is made in a laboratory.
Only one of the five persons using the Albion source of L-selenomethionine reported using foods rich in selenium like Brazil nuts, ocean fish or seaweed nor did any of the five persons have blood serum levels of selenium tested after using the methionine bound selenium for several weeks.
Granted that the usual dosage range of methionine bound selenium is 100 to 400 mcg daily and side effects are quite unlikely to show up at these low levels; yet if this compound is not what the body wants, it should not be used in any amount. So far, the problem is not with organic based whole food sources of selenomethionine such as high yeast selenium, but with the laboratory made counterpart called an amino acid chelate of L-selenomethionine. Our present opinion is that there is some defect in the manufacturing process of this amino acid chelate.
One reader with CFIDS took 1600 mcg daily of L-selenomethionine for several weeks and then had a numbing sensation on the right side of his body one day. He stopped using the selenium and fully recovered in a few days. After contacting me with this report, I initially was not convinced that the methionine bound selenium had anything to do with his symptoms but suggested he switch to a food source of selenium and start with a low dose and gradually increase it. I also suggested he have his blood serum levels tested for selenium before starting on any new supplement. A second person using just 800 mcg daily of L selenomethionine noticed pain in the kidney area and stopped using it.
Note: Alternatives to L selenomethionine are high selenium yeast (Selenomax - available from Source Naturals), high selenium broccoli (Activated Selenium by Jarrow Formulas), high selenium mustard greens (Bio-Active Selenium by Solarary or Selenium Cruciferate by Ecological Formulas). Solaray also sells other forms of selenium, so read labels carefully to avoid buying the wrong stuff.
At this juncture, I am of the opinion that the Brazil nuts, high selenium mustard greens and broccoli are good choices as is probably SelenoMax, a brand name of high-selenium yeast sold by Source Naturals. No adverse effects have been reported from using high-selenium yeast at doses up to 1600 mcg daily. More followup and feedback is needed here as we continue to fine tune the selenium supplement choices.
With high doses of selenomethionine, persons have also reported lung congestion, dermatitis and other skin conditions. Simon and Vale both reported adverse side effects from high doses of sodium selenite and selenomethionine. In an email from Simon in the UK, he said that at 1000 mcg daily of sodium selenite, his hair started falling out but this stopped when he reduced the dose to 500 mcg daily. With equally high doses of selenomethionine, he reported big flare-ups of dermatitis. Both Vale and Simon reported the symptoms going away in a few days after stopping these selenium supplements. Another person named Del also reported problems with high doses of selenomethionine. No one has reported any benefits.
All the reports of adverse effects are coming from the synthetic or laboratory made L-selenomethionine (amino acid chelates) and not from any known natural plant source of seleno methionine. The problem may be defects in the product resulting from flaws in the manufacturing process.
Several reports on experiences both good and bad using various types of selenium can be read on the Message Board at our website (www.keephope.net).
Here is one of them. Posted June 21, 2002.
Mark, I just picked up my new supply of Selenium from Solaray. It is called Bio-Active Selenium. It is from the Indian mustard plant that is grown in a greenhouse and no soil. They call it hyper-accumulation. Their label does not list the type of Selenium, however it must be a mix like the one you mentioned. This product is actually manufactured by Nutraceutical Corp. I'll let you know if this product causes the same side effects as the others. Vale
Regarding the Bio-Active Selenium from Solaray made from greenhouse grown mustard greens, Vale reports no side effects after using 1800 mcg daily for several days now. He reports that so far this is the only selenium supplement that he can take in high doses without side effects although he has not reported trying high selenium yeast.
July 5th, 2002.
"Within the past few weeks I have reached a conclusion that there is a problem with L selenomethionine especially in high doses. Two HIV + and two persons with immune problems not HIV related used high doses of selenomethionine with no apparent good results. They used the amino acid chelate, Albion brand. No resolution of symptoms was reported by any of these 4 cases and no increases in T cell counts or white blood cells.
On the contrary, concerning Jarrow Formulas "Activated Selenium" that has both selenocysteine plus methionine plus Vit. E, Riboflavin, broccoli and garlic - I have had two good reports from persons with long standing candidiasis (not HIV related). Both reported significant improvements in resolving candida infections after a week or two. The dose was around 900 mcg daily or 9 capsules a day.
I was aware that Ecological Formulas had a mustard green source of selenium that had 200 mcg per capsule, although pricey at 30 caps for $14.95. Your source with Solaray sounds like the same thing at half the cost. Right now, I am taking 2 Activated Selenium by Jarrow Formulas with one Selenium Cruciferate by Ecological Formulas but will probably go with the Solaray brand in place of Ecological Formulas later on. I do this once or twice a day. I personally like this combination very much.
Thanks for sharing your results with me. It is time to send L selenomethionine down the pike after the disappointing results of these 4 cases and now the side effects that several of you have reported on this message board. Take Care." Mark Konlee
Kansas City, KS.
Al who has Gulf War Syndrome reports very good results with eating about 10 Brazil nuts daily as his main source of selenium for the past 6 months although he also eats ocean fish 5 times a week. He reports his selenium blood serum levels are 240 mcg/l in a reference range that goes form 60 to 160.
Note: Our goal is to increase the blood serum selenium levels to 300 to 600 mcg/l. Our normal reference range for selenium in blood serum is from 150 to 300 mcg/l. For now we are disregarding the various low reference ranges given by different testing labs. Al reports that after consuming about 10 Brazil nuts daily for the past several months his white blood count has increased from 3.1 to 4.3. Significantly, a chronic staph infection that he has had in his thumb for the past several years has completely healed. Previously, there was a flare-up of the infection with pus every 2 or 3 months. Several prescriptions of antibiotics failed to permanently eradicate the infection during the past 5 years. Al reports his thumb is now totally healed and he has no fungal or yeast infections and feels basically normal.
June, 2002. Phil Whanger Ph D writing from the Dept of Environmental and Molecular Toxicology from Oregon State University (1) states:
"There are several selenocompounds in tissues of plants and animals. Selenate is a major inorganic compound found in both animal and plant tissues. Selenocysteine is the predominant selenoamino acid in tissues when inorganic selenium is given to animals. Selenomethionine is the major selenocompound found initially in animals given this selenoamino acid, but is converted with time afterwards to selenocysteine. Selenomethionine is the major compound in cereal grains, grassland legumes and soybeans. Selenomethionine can also be the major selenocompound in selenium enriched yeast, but the amount can vary markedly depending upon the growth conditions.
Se-methylselenocysteine is the major selenocompound in selenium enriched plants such as garlic, onions, broccoli florets and sprouts and wild leeks."
Ref: 1. Selenocompounds in plants and animals and their biological significance by Whanger PhD; J. Am coll Nutr. 2002 Jun;21(3):223-32
To: "mark konlee" email@example.com
Subject: Plant based Selenium
Date: Mon, 8 Jul 2002
"Mark, I wanted to let you know how I was progressing with the plant based Selenium (from Mustard Greens), but I also added two other items which might be affecting my condition as well. I also felt there is too much information and it could be confusing to post on the message board.
"I've been taking the Solaray product now for just over two weeks. 1800 mcg. I've also been taking Effexor for the same time period. I started with 37.5 mg, then switched to 75 mg after several days, then went back to 37.5 mg. My doctor said it might give me a boost of energy. The only thing I know for sure is it makes the brain fog much worse at 75 mg.
"The other product is from either your May or June posting on I believe you called it Hydroxygen. You said it was good for skin problems and might provide an energy boost. "I tried it on my skin with no results and then switched to another brand that was recommended. I didn't try it on the skin, but have been drinking it at a rate of 20 drops in about six ounces of orange juice twice a day. I also started this at about the same time.
"Now for the results. My capacity to keep going and not run out of gas is off the chart right now!!! As you know with CFIDS, we can only push ourselves just so far and then we hit a wall. For the past ten years or so and including this year, I could only play one round of golf (riding a cart) without becoming exhausted. Unfortunately, I would always have to play two days in a row and at some point in the second round I crash and burn. This also happened over Memorial Day weekend.
"Last week I attended a family reunion and golfed four out of five days, which included three rounds in a row the last three days. Not only did I not run out of gas, but also I went to a driving range each day after golfing and hit another 80 to 120 balls. Not that I'm into golf that much, but I wanted to see if I could keep going. I could have hit even more balls each day except my hands hurt from the friction, and my arms and shoulders hurt from lack of exercise over so many years.
"These golf outings are family affairs and usually only once a year, two rounds. This year was different and the timing was just right. If it had not been for the golf outings, I really would not have known about this change. I'm continuing daily trips to the driving range as kind of a measure to see if this keeps up, so far it has. Keep in mind that I really don't feel like I have much energy, but something GOOD is going on right now.
"Unfortunately I'll have to try and find out if it's a combination of all three items, just two items or just one. I'll start that process this Monday by eliminating the Effexor first and then eliminating the Hydroxygen drops. I'm hoping Selenium is doing the trick, it has so much promise. If Selenium and or Hydroxygen drops are the answer, I'll post it on the message board. If not, I'll let you know. This might take awhile." Vale
Vale dropped the Effexor one week ago and is still getting incredible sustained energy while golfing. He plans to drop "Cell Food" which is similar to Hydroxygen Plus and see if the high selenium mustard greens is what has brought him back to what appears to be normal health. He continues to use the "Bio-Active Selenium" from Solaray that is greenhouse grown mustard greens using 9 caps daily - each has 200 mcg of natural selenium compounds. A nutritionist from Ecological Formulas that makes an almost identical product called selenium cruciferate says the high selenium mustard greens contains predominantly L-methylselenocysteine.
Published research from Whanger and others suggest that selenium bound to methionine is the predominant form in high selenium yeast. However, the research indicates both the D and L form of selenomethionine are available in the yeast. I would hypothecate that because Cysteine is also present in yeast that some of the selenium is also bound to Cysteine. If one is to compare laboratory made L-selenomethionine to high selenium yeast, the high selenium yeast is the preferred choice as the selenium compounds are organically and naturally bound.
One reader, HIV+, who had used the amino acid chelate L selenomethionine has now switched to high selenium yeast and is using 1600 mcg daily with no side effects. However, since the switch, there are no new lab results to measure its effects on T cell counts and other blood parameters.
One person who is on a drug cocktail and whose CD4 counts had been holding steady for several months reports a gain of 75 more CD4 cells after eating about 6 Brazil Nuts daily for 2 months. Another reader who uses only Combivir reports a gain of 40 CD4 cells in about 10 weeks. He says he has consumed 6 to 8 of the nuts daily. Each Brazil Nut contains about 100 mcg of organic selenium bound to either Cysteine or Methionine.
Finley, Davis and Feng of the Agricultural Research Service in Grand Forks, ND, writing in the J. Nutr, 2000 September (1) reported that in experiments to induce colon cancer in rats that high selenium broccoli provided substantial protective benefits but not sodium selenite or selenate. Here is what they stated:
"Supranutritional amounts of Selenium supplied as high Selenium broccoli significantly decreased (P:<0.05) the incidence of aberrant crypts (AC) and aberrant crypt foci (ACF); preneoplastic lesions indicative of colon cancer compared with other dietary treatments. Diets were controlled for the presence or absence of broccoli and for the total amount of selenium. The reduction is AC and ACF was a function of Selenium in high selenium broccoli and not a result of broccoli alone or selenium alone."
They concluded that Se from high Selenium broccoli provided protection against colon cancer. In reading this research, it is significant that protection against colon cancer from sodium selenite or selenate did not occur. It strengthens our view on the importance of L selenocysteine as an immune modulator and especially when derived from whole food sourceslike broccoli or mustard greens.
Ref: 1. J. Nutr, 2000 Sep;130(9):2384-9
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Dan posted on our Message Board sometime ago an important finding that links Candidiasis to Neutrophil and macrophage inactivity (Anergy) caused by a deficiency of selenium. He writes that The following studies show that selenium is a key nutrient in the control of candida albicans and cited these excerpts:
The effects of selenium deficiency on the responses to Candida albicans infection were examined in mice. When selenium-deficient mice and selenium-supplemented mice were given i.v. injections of 0.1 ml suspensions of 1X10(5) or 5X10(4) C. albicans in 0.9% sterile saline, deaths in the selenium-deficient animals started after 2.5 to 3.5 days compared with 7 to 8.5 days in the selenium-supplemented animals. Further studies demonstrated that 3 days after an i.v. injection of 1X10(5) C. albicans, significantly more of the microorganisms were found in the kidneys (P less than 0.001) livers (P less than 0.025) and spleens (P less than 0.01) of the selenium-deficient mice compared with the same organs of the selenium-supplemented animals. Selenium deficiency was also demonstrated to impair the ability of mouse neutrophils to kill C. albicans in in-vitro tests. (1) This excerpt was from the Journal of Nutrition.
In an experiment in rats, Boyne, Arthur and Wilson found that Selenium deficiency in rats impairs the ability of neutrophils and peritoneal macrophages to kill Candida albicans organisms in vitro. (2)
In India, Kukreja and Khan reported that The role of selenium in the diet of rats has been examined with respect to the Neutrophil functions. Feeding of Se-deficient diet for 75 days resulted in reduction in candidacidal activity, superoxide production, oxygen consumption, glucose utilization and glutathione peroxidase activity. Supplementing the diet with Selenium for 30 days resulted in partial restoration of all the activities. (3)
Consider the millions of people who have been and are today suffering from the overgrowth of candida albicans and other yeast and fungal infections. Very few of these people know or have been told that selenium supplementation is absolutely crucial for their recovery. Last week a reader who started taking selenium supplementation reported on our Message Board that it has cleared up the coating on his tongue. The coating may be due to yeast overgrowth and lymphatic congestion.
Several other people who have started on higher doses of selenium have reported that the whites of their eyes are now a bright white instead of being a gray or yellow tinge. A gray tinge is often seen in elderly people due to overall buildup of toxins in the blood and the yellow tinge in the whites of the eyes is often due to elevated liver enzymes. Eyes where the white part is a very bright white is seen in young healthy growing children. Is it not great to see tangible results when using selenium - tongue clearer, eyes that sparkle and the whites that are bright?
Additional research I found linked Candidiasis to Cysteine and Methionine deficiency. Cysteine binds with selenium to help produce gluthionine peroxidase which increases the functional activity of both neutrophils and macrophages. Here is what Tancho found from testing various groups of amino acids for their effect in promoting the anti-candida activity of neutrophils.
In all groups tested, amino acids containing cysteine and methionine clearly neutralized the suppression, especially cysteine at the concentration of more than 20 mcg/ml significantly recovered the anti-Candida activity of neutrophils which were suppressed in the presence of 1% glucose. Correspondingly, cysteine augmented production of lactoferrin by stimulated neutrophils; which functions as a major effector molecule in growth inhibition of Candida by neutrophils. These results suggest that cysteine in alimentation solution augments anti-Candida defense mechanisms through recovery of Neutrophil function. (4).
As we can see the beneficial effects of methionine, cysteine and selenium in promoting the anti-Candida activity of neutrophils, it makes sense to obtain selenium from whole food sources and not man-made versions of these products.
1. The Response of selenium-deficient mice to Candida albicans infection - by Boyne and Arthur. J Nutr 1986 May;116(5):816-22
2. An in vivo and in vitro study of selnium deficiency and infection in rats - by Boyne, Arthur and Wilson. J Comp Pathol 1986 Jul;96(4):379-86
3. Effect of experimental selenium deficiency and its supplementation on the candidacidal activity of neutrophils in albino rats, by Kukreja and Khan. Indian J Biochem Biophys 1994 Oct; 31(5):427-9
4. Reverting effect of cysteine on the suppression by glucose...of anti-Candida activity of human neutrophils, by Tansho. Kansenshogaku Zasshi. 1998 Jul;72(7):727-37
A few readers have attempted to eat 10 or more Brazil nuts daily as their only source of selenium for the past several months. In one case labs results yielded a lower than expected white blood cell count. Since selenium is known to increase WBC counts, this raises the question as to how much of the selenium in the Brazil nuts was actually absorbed. The only way to find an exact answer to this question is to get a blood serum test for selenium levels. Specialty Labs offers this test. There is more information in Positive Health News Report No 24, the latest issue. Anyone who has any of the 27 illnesses listed on page 6 of this issue or any of the following not listed including candidiasis, hepatitis, CFIDS, Fibromyalgia, Autism or mulitple chemical sensitivity urgently needs to be tested for selenium levels.
Our reference range for disease free persons is 150 to 300 mcg/l. The farther below 150 you are means you are in danger of life threatening illness, the lower the number the greater the danger. For medium therapeutic dose, 300 to 600 mcg/l and for intense therapeutic dose, 600 to 1000 mcg/l. Above 1005 mcg/l in blood serum and you risk some reversible side effects like soft finger nails, hair falling out, garlic breath and nausea. All you need to do is stop using the selenium for a few days and then resume its use.
Our current dosage guidelines are 50 to 100 mcg per 20 lbs of body weight for the disease free person (For example. 400 mcg to 800 mcg daily for a 160 lb. person) -and 100 to 200 mcg per 20 lbs of body weight for the immune challenged or anyone with anyone of the 30 illnesses listed thus far - a list that continues to grow. For a 160 lb. person, that would be 800 to 1600 mcg of selenium daily. (Sodium selenite will cause side effects at these levels and should be avoided.) Update: See July, 2002, report on selenium compounds supplement choices for breaking news.
Writing in the December issue, 2000, of The Townsend Letter for Doctors, Harold Foster Ph.D. an article called AIDS and the Selenium-CD4 Cell Tailspin - the Geography of a Pandemic, Fosters article is discussed in the June, 2002, issue of The Townsend Letter by Wayne Martin BS, ChE. Martin states:
Foster says that in a viral infection, we develop a deficiency of selenium. Selenium, he tells us, is important in generating our immune white blood cells, lymphocytes, that fight both bacterial and viral infections.
Foster reports on AIDS in Africa. Zimbabwe has 26% of its population infected with AIDS; Senegal has only 1.77% of its population infected with AIDS. Senegal has a very high content of selenium in the soil and hence in food. Foster thinks that it is the selenium content of diet in Senegal that is preventing AIDS in the population there.
Martin also reported that selenium may prevent the West Nile Virus now being spread across the United States by Mosquitoes and cited research in China that selenium deficiency can cause Keshans disease that causes death from myocardial infraction due to the Coxsackie B virus. The Chinese have found that where the selenium levels in the diet is sufficient, death from myocardial infraction caused by the Coxsackie virus is prevented. Martin also cited reports that deaths from myocardial infraction caused by the Coxsackie virus that continue to happen to this day in both the United States and England. These heart attacks, research finds, are preventable with selenium supplementation.
Mycoplasmas have been implicated in AIDS, CFIDS, Lyme disease, Gulf War Syndrome and Mad Cow Disease (See Pos. Health News No 22). Selenium has already demonstrated effectiveness against viral, fungal and bacterial infections. Mycoplasmas are half way between a virus and a bacteria which is why antibiotics are often effective against them. However, there is no reason why the use of selenium at therapeutic dosage levels should not be tried in these conditions.
by Bernard Bihari MD
Dr. Bihari has more than 70 people with MS in his practice and all are stable over an average of three years. The original patient on LDN for MS, now on it for 17 years, has not had an attack or disease progression for 12 years since the one missed month that led to an attack. In addition, 2,000 or more people with MS have been prescribed LDN by their family Md. or their neurologists based on what they have read on the LDN website or heard about in internet chat rooms focused on MS. Many such patients with MS not under Dr. Bihari's care, use the e-mail link on the LDN website to ask questions.
Clinically the results are strongly suggestive of efficacy. Ninety-eight to 99% of people treated with LDN experience no more disease progression, whether the disease category is relapsing-remitting or chronic progressive.
Many prescribing physicians do not generally know about LDN. Only once has a patient reported disease progression while on LDN. In this case, it showed itself five days after he had started the drug. The onset of the episode had apparently preceded the start of LDN.
In addition to the apparent ability of LDN to stop disease progression, approximately two-thirds of MS patients starting LDN have some symptomatic improvement generally apparent within the first few days. There are two types of such improvement:
One is reduction in spasticity when this is present, sometimes allowing easier ambulation when spasticity in the legs has been a prominent element of a patient's difficulty in walking or standing. This is unlikely to represent a direct effect of LDN on the disease process, but rather reduction in the irritability in nervous tissue surrounding plaques. Endorphins have been shown to reduce irritability of nervous tissue, e.g., by reducing seizures in patients with epilepsy.
The other area of symptomatic improvement in some patients is a reduction in MS-related fatigue. This is, also, not likely due to a direct effect on the MS disease process, but rather an indirect one caused by restoration of normal endorphin levels improving energy. It appears that at least one-third of patients starting LDN have some reduction in chronic symptomatology. For the most part, this involves a diminution in muscle spasm and tightness and in MS-associated chronic fatigue.
In two patients, chronic visual impairment due to old episodes of optic neuritis has shown fluctuating improvement. Patients who are in the midst of an acute exacerbation when they start LDN have generally shown rapid resolution of the attack.
It should be emphasized that in spite of the plenitude of clinical experience described above, in the absence of a formal clinical trial of LDN in MS, these results cannot be considered scientific, but rather anecdotal. A clinical trial, preferably by a pharmaceutical company with some experience with MS, is clearly needed to determine whether these results can be replicated. If they can be, they are likely to lead to widespread use of this extremely non-toxic drug in the treatment of MS.
In May 2000, Bernard Bihari, MD reported four occurrences of surprisingly rapid clinical improvement in people with multiple sclerosis, presumably related to LDN use. Three were female patients for whom Dr. Bihari had prescribed nightly LDN.
As of March 2002, all four have sustained the improvement originally seen. Since those four cases were first reported, there have been several dozen more patients who have had similar relief of spasticity allowing better ambulation and relief of MS-related fatigue.
The occurrences Dr. Bihari originally reported in May 2000 were as follows:
1. A 31-year-old patient has a history of relapsing-remitting MS, and recently had developed not only slurred speech and trouble finding the right word (dysphasia) but also had noted weakness in one hand and one leg. She started LDN and reported that within one week her problems with speech had substantially cleared, and there was a marked improvement in her gait and in the use of her hand.
2. The patient who is 44 years old has chronic progressive MS (as do the other two women to be discussed below). She had reached the point some time ago where she needed to use a walker in the home in order to get around. On the third night after starting LDN, she got up and went to the bathroom without using the walker for the first time in two years. She reports having experienced a prompt 20%-30% improvement in her balance, apparently due to decreased spasticity.
3. The third patient, a woman in her early 50's, reported prompt improvement in walking within four days after starting LDN, apparently due to decreased spasticity.
4. The fourth case came to Dr. Biharis attention in late April 2000 when a woman telephoned his office to leave a message of thanks for him. She has the diagnosis of MS and for the past ten years has had variable visual impairment in one eye, to the extent that she has had to wear eyeglasses to mask that eye. She said her neurologist had begun to prescribe LDN three months earlier. Within two days after starting LDN she regained unimpaired binocular vision. She said that she had recently forgotten to take her LDN at bedtime for two nights in a row, and the eye problem returned only to subside within a day or two after restarting the medication.
Dr. Bernard Bihari MD (New York)
The typical dose given to persons with MS is 3 to 4.5 mg of Naltrexone once a day just before bedtime. Naltrexone has been used also in the treatment of cancer, as an immune modulator in treating HIV/AIDS More information can be found on the website at www.lowdosenaltrexone.org.
Infection Protection by Klatz and Goldman is a new book about all the infections that bug humanity and what people can do to prevent them and help get rid of them. Most of the major infectious diseases of civilization are covered in exacting detail. Detail and organization of a vast amount of information in this book will help the health care professional and the do it yourselfer.
Topics covered include over 100 types of viruses and bacteria and many common spices and herbs that inactivate them. The symptoms of a wide range of common illnesses are described in detail. I was donated a copy of the book and I intend to keep it as a reference book.
There are many books on health and related issues that contain many pages and words but not a lot of substance. This 400 page book had a lot of down-to-earth practical information in it. There are excerpts from my writings in the book as well as those of over 100 other professionals and writers. You can find out more by visiting www.worldhealth.net or call the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine at 773-528-4333.
Dr Klatz has asked me to write an article on supplements that support the immune system of aging persons. That will be a challenge and one I will undertake in the coming months.
Seattle, WA - Case report. Bob, a reader, called and said that after eating two handfuls of raw pumpkin seeds daily for 7 days, his blood pressure dropped from 155 over 95 to 120 over 83. He credited the pumpkin seeds with reducing his blood pressure. He also said the pumpkin seeds made him feel stronger. He stated that in the week he ate the pumpkin seeds, he had stopped using his blood pressure medication. The amount of pumpkin seeds he consumed was about 3 tablespoons daily.
Note: To date, the two most effective OTC products to lower blood pressure are olive leaf extract or garlic. Olive leaf extract, if a brand with high oleuropein content can be found, is very effective. It would be helpful if others with high blood pressure would report their results after using pumpkin seeds to see if a pattern of similar results occurs.
Note: Persons with low blood pressure are advised not to use olive leaf extract as it will lower their blood pressure even further.
Recently, we secured the rights to the domain name keephopealive.org. Rather than substitute the new domain name for the existing keephope.net, we have decided to set up the new domain name in Spanish with links to the English site and vice versa. This will make the vast amount of information from our English website available to millions of Spanish descendants in Mexico, Central and South America as well as Spain, Portugal and Spanish speaking residents in the US
Eventually we would also like to set up or have someone volunteer to set up with our help a French version of the website. Anyone who wants to help with the additional expenses involved in this website expansion program can send a donation to us and mark it for the new website. Without the generous support of our readers we would not be able to continue our present level of research, writings and publications or expand our present level of services.
Keep Hope Alive, PO Box 270041, West Allis, WI 53227 www.keephope.net firstname.lastname@example.org
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Recently, the mother of a 16 year old girl from Detroit, MI, whose daughter is living with AIDS, says her daughter has consumed 500 mcg daily of selenium daily of "Activated Selenium" by Jarrow Formulas for the past 6 weeks. The mother says her daughter, who weighs 100 pounds, had a blood serum level of selenium at 181 mcg/l after using the selenium for several weeks.
This is the first test result of blood serum levels tested for selenium. We are looking for test results initially that raise the blood serum levels of selenium to 300 to 600 mcg/l to measure the therapeutic effects on the immune system. Eventually we would like to push the selenium envelope to the limit up to 1000 mcg/l in the blood serum and at the point reversible side effects like thinning hair and changes like the appearance of soft toe and finger nails starts to occur. This is the only way we will ever determine the maximum benefits from taking high doses of selenium.
Research in China finds that in diets that are unusually high in selenium, the first changes that occur are in the finger and toe nails indicating excess levels of selenium. The studies were done in Enshi county because of the high selenium content of the food. They found it took a consumption of 910 mcg daily of selenium that corresponded to a blood level of 1005 mcg/l of selenium for the first signs of selenosis to appear and this was in a population of healthy individuals. They report the first signs of excess selenium start at about 1005 mcg/l of selenium in the blood. Even at 1005 mcg/l of selenium in the blood, they found NO ABNORMALITIES OF LIVER OR HEART WERE SEEN BY SUPERSONIC B OR ELECTROCARDIOGRAPHIC EXAMINATIONS. (1)
The researchers also found that at high daily intakes of selenium that The white blood cell counts also increased significantly. (1)
As the white blood cells are the foundation of our immune system, this could explain in part why selenium has such a protective effect against infectious disease especially when used at high doses. From our present analysis of published research, a safe and effective range of selenium intake for normal disease-free persons is based on a formula of 50 to 100 mcg per 20 pounds of body weight. In a 160 pound persons, that would be 400 to 800 mcg daily. Of course you can always take less or none at all, but why minimize your benefits on the most important trace mineral ever discovered to enhance immune function.
For persons under disease challenge from HIV to candidiasis to hepatitis to cancer to about 25 more conditions listed in Pos. Health News (No 24), the latest issue, we believe the needs for selenium may double due to malabsorption or to conditions that deplete selenium reserves more rapidly leading us to a therapeutic range of 100 to 200 mcg per 20 lbs of body weight. For a person weighing 160 lbs, that would be from 800 to 1600 mcg daily of selenium in supplemental form or as is naturally found in fish, sea vegetables, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds and whole grains. It is advised to avoid sodium selenite, liquid selenium or elemental selenium as the threshold of side effects is much lower than with the amino acid chelates. Note See July,2002, report for breaking news on selenium supplements.
Sources I have read on the internet state that HIV has a receptor for selenium and that the Ebola virus has 13 receptors for selenium. Ebola and HIV may be stealing selenium from the host in order to weaken a cell-mediated immune response against the invading virus. One wonders how a virus like Ebola could have the smarts to have 13 receptors for selenium. This virus may be the result of some governments biowarfare lab research. It seems it would be convenient to test biowarfare agents in the jungles of Africa where the culprits can hide behind and blame the disease on some creatures from the deep lagoons. Releasing biowarfare agents for testing on primitive people or third world countries is no less an act of international terrorism than releasing it in the United States or Europe. One day, God will judge these people very harshly.
1. Studies of safe maximal daily dietary Selenium intake in seleniferous area in China; Yang G, Yin S, Zhou R, Gu L, Yan B and Liu Y. J Trace Elem electrolytes Health Dis 1989 Sep;3(3):123-30
Miami, FL. Bob M who had 135 CD4 cells and a non-detectable viral load for HIV went off his drug cocktail (against our recommendations) in October, 2001, and used several dietary supplements including consuming about 600 mcg of selenium (amino acid chelate) daily for the past 8 months. While not using any natural antivirals, his white blood cell count stayed well within the normal range at 5.8. Platelets were at 201 and RBCs at 4.6. Triglycerides were at 110 and most other blood parameters were within the normal range. The CD8s were at 910 while the viral load was 171,000 and the CD4s a mere 12. What is surprising is with these low CD4s that there were no outbreaks of PCP, MAC or CMV. Did the selenium offer a protective effect?
The doctor recommended Kaletra and Epivir and another one with the initials TAR. It is clear that selenium alone at 600 mcg daily will not replace a drug cocktail but the protective effects of selenium show through when compared to other labs in our file over 2 years old from this same reader. Perhaps selenium plus 2 drugs are all that will be needed for an effective treatment protocol. Dr. Bihari has found that with Naltrexone and selenium supplementation, only two drug are needed to effectively treat HIV, not the usual 3 or 4. See the current issue of Positive Health News (No 24).
Talked to Bob today. He says for the past two weeks he has increased his intake of selenium to 1600 mcg daily. Along with this he has added Kyolic Formula 100 (Aged Garlic extract) in capsules. He takes ten capsules twice a day. This give him a total of 6 grams of aged garlic extract daily. He says his appetite has come back very strong and he now eats 3 square meals a day and has gained about 10 pounds in the past two weeks. He says his weight today is at 155. (The most he has ever weighed was 165.) He has the 3 drugs the doctor prescribed for him but has not yet started on them.
While Bobs lab results earlier this month indicate he has only 12 CD4 cells, he has high CD8s and better than average total white blood cell counts. He said he may wait until his next lab test to see if his latest protocol is working before deciding whether or not to use the drugs.
Long before PCR and protease inhibitors, a study published in the German Medical Journal "Deutsche Zeitshrift" in Oct, 1989, by T.H. Abdullad, D.V. Kirkpatrick and J. Carter, reports on the results of 7 AIDS patients taking 5 grams of garlic daily as an aged extract. They said that 6 of the 7 patients had normal NK cell activity after 6 weeks and that all had normal NK activity after 12 weeks. Five of the 7 had significant improvements in their T4/T8 ratios after 12 weeks with 3 returning to normal reference ranges of 1.0 or higher. An important question is if garlic could alone restore the CD4/CD8 ratio to normal, what effect was this quantity of aged garlic having on the viral load and T cell counts?
Another question: Are many persons using protease inhibitors today as part of a drug cocktail of 3 or more obtaining CD4/CD8 ratios of 1 or higher in 12 weeks along with non-detectable viral loads? Note: Kyolic Formula 100 may have been the product used in this study. Kyolic garlic is undenatured, meaning the protein structures are not damaged by heat and have high biological activity. High doses of selenium along with a garlic rich in cysteine like Kyolic could potentially have significant benefits in increasing glutathione levels in the cells and thus help restore the ability of the immune system to control infections like HIV, herpes, HPV and many others.
Other than Bob M from Miami, no one, to my knowledge, with T cells so low (just 12) has ever attempted such an approach either alone or with high levels of selenium (1600 mcg daily). The 10 lb. weight gain in the first two weeks is not bad for starters, but will this good news continue? Will the T cells rise and the viral load drop in the next lab test which wont happen until sometime in July? Time will tell as we await the answers. Since aged garlic extract is being used without the addition of either prescription or over-the-counter antivirals, I see Bobs therapy as being strictly an immune-based protocol.
Beginning with the fall issue, 2002, our twice annual publication called Positive Health News will be changed to a new name possibly the Journal of Immunity. The name change is not a pressing issue but the new suggested name will more accurately reflect the content of the articles published by us. In publications that target an HIV audience, there has been some degree of burnout with the word positive that has acquired a negative aura at the subconscious level. After all, friends of people HIV+ (positive) prefer to be negative. As we experience life, both the good and the bad, our feelings about certain words and even numbers like 911 can change at a deeper level in our psyche without our conscious involvement.
The Journal of Immunity will continue to target a wide audience that includes all chronic conditions where immune dysfunction is implicated and will report on basic immunity and new research as we seek more knowledge on how to jump start an inactive immune system. The name change will be more than window dressing; it will give us a fresh start, a literary experience in optimism restrained by realism and yet hopefully attract new readers along with more donations and advertising to help with the cost of printing a higher quality magazine and need I mention increasing distribution expenses. The name of the monthly report Progressive Health News will remain unchanged for now.
Frequently, I am asked by readers who want to save money about low cost brands of dietary supplements from internet or mail order sources. I usually dont know the answer to their question as the proliferation of new companies that market dietary supplements grows daily. When prices sound just so temptingly low that they are irresistible, ask for a Certificate of Analysis. The Certificate of Analysis can tell you the quantity of materials in the product although the quality of the materials is not always discernible.
There are some small Ma and Pa operations that make high quality products and may not be able to afford the cost of purchasing Certificate of Analysis so the quality of the products may have to judged by the results they provide.
When it comes to herbal extracts, the taste test is a honest way of evaluating the strength of the Herbs in a formula. The taste test does not lie, whether it is food or herb and often can be applied to the contents of tablets and capsules as well. Each vitamin, mineral and herb has its own distinct flavor. By placing a small amount of the product under your tongue, you can sense the flavor of the main ingredients, the intensity of the flavors as well as other flavors like maltodextrin and other additives. To do a fair evaluation with the taste test, you need a sample of the higher priced product from a well known reputable firm along with a sample of the cheaper competing product. You then taste both products, one at a time, to distinguish their similarities or differences.
An example of misrepresentation or fraud occurred recently in Florida to Bob M when a local discount vitamin shop told him they were marketing the Kyolic Aged Garlic Formula 100 under their own label and that it was made by Kyolic. When Bob told me what a bargain it was I suggested he read the label to see if it was made by the manufacturer of Kyolic. Nothing on the label indicated this. Second, did the taste test comparing the flavor of the contents of a Kyolic Garlic capsule to the contents of the cheaper product. He told me that the garlic in the Kyolic brand had a older garlic flavor and the cheaper brand had a taste closer to fresh garlic plus some other flavor. It became readily apparent that the cheaper brand was not made by Wakunuga, manufacturers of Kyolic and that the sales person may themselves have been mislead by the manufacturer of the competing product.
Low cost dietary supplement manufacturers often add cheap fillers like maltodextrin that costs less than 50 cents a pound that dilute the effectiveness of the products they market but increase their sales from a cost conscious public. Several years ago, I was in a Walmart and bought a gallon of what I thought was pure aloe vera juice at a bargain price of just $5.00. When I got home and tasted it I realized it had a weak flavor. I thought, this tastes like water. I looked at the fine print on the label and it listed water as the first ingredient followed by aloe vera and a preservatives. I estimated from the flavor that this aloe vera juice was about 75% water and 25% aloe. I felt quite foolish about this experience and never bought any more aloe vera juice from Walmart.
I am reporting this here, not just because it is a true personal experience I had, but because of the reliability and honesty of the taste test. The public can be fooled by slick marketers because they rarely taste the contents of a capsule or a tablet, almost never ask for a Certificate of Analysis and often judge the value of the product by the appearance of the label, the accompanying literature and make a purchasing decision based on the best price.
I have long believed that the best sources of nutrients are whole foods, organically grown. Organic costs usually more and the choices are more limited.
Klatz and Goldman report that 20 million pounds of antibiotics are used each year in the cattle and poultry industry. The antibiotics help prevent infections and promote weight gain in animals. Could people who eat meats and poultry contaminated with these antibiotics also gain extra weight, just like the farm animals? Over half the population of the US is now obese. There may be a long range price to pay for buying meats contaminated with antibiotics and it could be obesity.
Muscle testing, also called Kineosology, is widely used by persons and many alternative health care professionals to try to determine whether a particular product will benefit a patient or not. It is usually done by holding a bottle containing the product in one hand while a second person tries to press down on the other hand of the patient to see if the resistance is stronger or weaker. If the arm gets stronger the product is thought to be beneficial; if the arm gets weaker, then the item is thought to be harmful to the person.
I have a real problem with these kinds of tests. First, actual contact of the product to the hand does not occur. A bottle, glass or plastic, is held in the persons hand. The energy field that most likely comes in contact with the persons hand is the bottle itself, not its contents. Any strengthening or weakening of the other arm is most likely psychosomatic, based on the persons knowledge of what is in the bottle and their perception of whether or not it will be beneficial or harmful.
To do a Muscle test that is logical and possibly scientific, the actual product, not the bottle or even the capsule but only the contents of the capsule should come in contact with the persons hand. Then the energy reaction in the other arm may have some validity based on a transfer of the energy to the hand, then through the nervous system to the brain and finally a reaction (stronger or weaker) in the other arm. The same effect should occur if one drop of a substance is placed under the tongue and the arm is tested for a strength or weakness reaction or a neutral effect - no difference. The way muscle testing is widely done today is not logical and is, in my opinion, Voodoo diagnostics. To those who believe in these methods, may I suggest this little experiment.
Take 4 bottles of products, two of which you believe are beneficial (vitamin E, selenium, garlic, coral calcium etc.) and two items that you know are harmful like white sugar and cigarettes. Place some of the white sugar and cigarettes in two separate plastic bottles and label them. Then bring the person to be tested into the room and blindfold them so that with each test they will not know which bottle and which substance is in their hand. Write down the results of all 4 items tested but do not disclose them to the person being tested.
Next, unblind the person and do the test again with their knowledge of what each of the 4 items are that is placed in their hand. Write down the results for each item tested on a separate sheet of paper. Now compare the two test results. If muscle testing by this method is valid, then the patient should have reacted the same to each product in both tests. If it is Voodoo diagnostics, the results will be different. Now, you believers in muscle testing, you tell me the results of this experiment.
Note: to make the test results even more believable, have one kineosologist test the person blindfolded and another kineosologist test the same items with the person unblinded and with their full knowledge of each item being tested. If muscle testing by this method is valid, the results of both tests should still be the same.
Earlier this month, state lawmakers in Madison, Wisconsin, approved spending 4 million to help stop the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease in a 287 square mile area that is just west of the capitol, Madison. The plan is to kill off nearly 15000 deer that the Department of Natural Resources believes is in the target area. So far, of 500 deer tested in the area, 15 or 3% have been found to be infected. The disease, called CWD for chronic wasting disease is a brain disease like Mad Cow Disease and involves misfolded prions that affect the function of the brain.
The Governor, Scott McCallum, has asked for federal funding to help stop the spread of the disease. A Congressional committee in Washington has invited 8 states with the problem of deer infected with CWD to sit in on the committee hearings and hear testimony from the Interior department and Dept. of Agriculture. The eight states where deer are infected with CWD are Colorado, Wisconsin, Nebraska, So Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, Oklahoma and Kansas.
One year ago, in Positive Health News, No 22, I reported on Mad Cow Disease and the danger of getting the human version called CJD from eating venison from deer infected with chronic wasting syndrome. A recent article printed in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported on a 39 yr. old man here in Wisconsin who got CJD and has since died. He is reported to have eaten a lot of venison over the past several years.
For more information on how to protect yourself from getting Mad Deer or Mad Cow disease, see Positive Health News, No 22 (Spring issue, 2001). Copyright 2002 Keep Hope Alive, PO Box 270041, West Allis, WI 53227 www.keephope.net email@example.com
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If you are keeping notes, this is the 7 month that I have been writing about selenium. Eventually, I will start discussing other topics. Right now, this one is too important to let go. I sense that the cure for a number of incurable illnesses will involve therapeutic (not wimpy) doses of organic selenium.
Almost everyone has heard about the dangers of too much selenium. What has been and is lacking from all this loose talk is a corpus delecti - evidence of just one single case of selenium poisoning that killed someone, anywhere, on this entire planet. At the NIH web site (http://www.cc.nih.gov/ccc/supplements/selen.html), they report on cases of industrial accidents but no fatalities even here have been reported. Even when a pharmaceutical company in the 1980s put 1000 times more selenium into a tablet than they stated on the label, there were no reported deaths or irreversible injury.
They say that in wartime, loose lips sink ships. In times of peace, loose talk that misinforms people on the benefits of selenium and its extremely low toxicity, kills people and not just a handful either - Im talking about millions. In my estimate, more people die from selenium deficiency each year than were killed in all of World War II. Im estimating 50 to 100 million premature deaths each year worldwide due to illnesses promoted by selenium deficiency.
Several years ago, a local holistic dentist told me that the Chinese used to commit suicide by eating large amounts of salt (sodium chloride). Now, when we researched the subject of sodium, we found it was involved in obesity, insulin resistance, high blood pressure and heart disease. Now, we dont see a warning label on a box of salt, but we should because salt and excess sodium consumption is a real destroyer of health and it kills people. One example of salt toxicity is a place in the Middle East called the Dead Sea. This is because there is so much salt in the Dead Sea that nothing can live in it (no fish, not even algae). When sailors are lost at sea, they are warned not to drink sea water as it will kill them, but rather to drink their own urine if there is no fresh water available. Sea water kills because the sodium in it causes kidney and heart failure.
Some people swell (gain water weight) when they eat ham because it is so high in salt. Excess sodium consumption contributes to many cases of kidney failure each year and an unknown number of deaths. There is clear evidence that excess sodium consumption kills people. Where are the responsible scientists warning the public to stop consuming excess amounts of salt and warning of its toxic and deadly side effects?
Why does the NIH recommend such a trivial amount of selenium - 70 mcg daily for adult men and just 50 mcg for women? The very research they cite does not support these numbers. The NIH does not explain why the Japanese that consume an average of 600 mcg daily of selenium from food sources (fish and seaweed) and have just 1/8th the prostate cancer the US has, have not reported a single case of selenium toxicity. Also why is there no selenium toxicity reported in Northern Greenland where selenium consumption from fish and natural sources exceeds 1200 mcg daily?
Monitoring selenium levels. A blood serum test for selenium measured in ug/L is the same as micrograms per liter and is available from Specialty Labs, 2211 Michigan Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90404 Phone 310-828-6543 or 800-421-4449. www.specialtylabs.com The code number for the test is 4875. This is the preferred test as it is a blood serum test. They also can test selenium levels in whole blood or in just the RBC's. However, the reference ranges are different for all three types of tests. I suggest you request the Selenium Serum trace metal test only (Code 4875). The Serum test for selenium is the most common test used. Retail cost is $121. Some physicians may discount the price. The reference ranges for the serum test are 100 to 170. Those are Specialty labs reference ranges and they are very low.
Our "normal" reference range starts at 150 and goes to 300. Our suggested therapeutic reference range starts at 300 mcg/l and goes up to 600 mcg/l Note mcg/l is the same as ug/L Possible mild side effects might occur if the selenium levels go over 600 ug/l. The J. AIDS this past month published that persons HIV+ whose selenium levels are less than 135 ug/l are 13 times more likely to get a mycobacteria infection than those with more than 135 ug/l. Lab results expressed as ng/ml (nanograms per milliter)is the same proportion of selenium as mcg/l (micrograms per liter).
Periodic monitoring of blood serum selenium levels will allow persons to measure not only the amount in their blood but the effectiveness of the selenium supplements they are taking. Seleniun in tablets where di-calcium phosphate is used as a binder are difficult to absorb and should be avoided. In fact, because di-calcium phosphate as a binder acts like cement, all dietary supplements in tablet form containing di-calcium phosphate should be avoided.
Based on data I recently received, I estimate that taking 800 to 1000 mcg daily of selenium should increase blood serum levels to around 500 mcg/l or ng/ml, however it is expressed. It is extremely unlikely any side effects would occur until the selenium levels go over 600 mcg/l. Published reports indicate some persons have had as much as 3000 mcg/l and had no side effects from the selenium derived from natural sources. It is important to avoid the synthetic sodium bound forms of seleniun - sodium selenite or selenate. There are known side effects from using these forms. L selenomethione or L-selenocysteine are the naturally occuring forms we want to use. Brazil nuts and seafood remain the most abundant sources of natural selenium. High selenium yeast if you can find it is excellent, except for the strong taste of yeast, it is easier to take in capsule form.
The highest amount of selenium taken by a reader with CFIDS so far is 1800 mcg daily as reported on the Message Board. No side effects have been reported/ although one person said the selenium gave him garlic breath. He did not indicate what kind of seleniun he was using or how much he was taking. The highest amount considered safe in the natural forms is in a range from 100 to 300 mcg per 20 pounds of body weight daily. For a 160 pound person, that would be from 800 to 2400 mcg of selenium daily. Persons doing more than 1000 mcg of selenium daily should have their physician monitor blood serum levels of selenium. This information is helpful in correlating blood serum levels of selenium to both the benefits derived and any side effects that might develop after prolonged use of selenium at high doses.
8-12-97 By Joe Marks, 541-737-3380 SOURCES: Philip Whanger 541-737-1803 Judy Butler, 541-737-1803
CORVALLIS - Oregon State University scientists, who just developed a better method for assessing selenium metabolism, say concerns about the trace mineral's toxicity are usually unwarranted.
"You'd have to consume more than 60 of the usual-strength (50 micrograms each) pharmaceutical selenium tablets a day for years before you'd even get sick," said Philip Whanger, an OSU professor of agricultural chemistry. (Editor's Note: that is 3000 mcg daily!)
Still, the improved toxicity test Whanger and colleagues developed is important because there are incidences where humans and animals get overdosed. In the 1980s, for example, a now-defunct pharmaceutical company produced tablets that contained 1,000 times more selenium than advertised. There have also been cases where injections into farm animals exceeded recommended doses tenfold. Research is also being done on the reverse side of the problem - selenium deficiency.
Whanger's selenium toxicity assay method uses albumin, a blood protein, as a marker. A ratio of selenium to albumin exceeding nine nanograms per milligram in the blood plasma is toxic.
The assay's accuracy and precision makes finding a needle in a haystack seem like child's play. There area 28 billion nanograms, or 28 thousand milligrams, in an ounce. In humans, there are less than three drops of selenium in an individual's 10 liters of blood. "It's like measuring a shot-glass of vermouth in a railroad tank car of gin," Whanger joked.
Soil in parts of the Pacific Northwest, the upper Midwest and the northeastern United States, New Zealand and China are known to be deficient in selenium. Prior to the 1970s, selenium deficiencies caused thousands of deaths in China, particularly to children and young adults. Selenium-related deaths seldom occurred after scientists there identified the problem and started putting selenium in table salt.
Whanger said some soils in the Pacific Northwest are among the lowest in selenium of any areas in the United States. In some years early in the century, a disorder called white muscle disease," which is caused by selenium deficiency, killed as many as half of the lambs and calves born to ewes and cows raised on crops grown in Oregon.
OSU researchers started working with farmers and ranchers on the cause and treatment of white muscle disease in the 1920s. By 1960, white muscle disease was eliminated and researchers estimated that the Oregon livestock industry saved $10 million a year by giving selenium supplements to their animals.
There is strong evidence that selenium supplements are good for humans as well, according to Whanger. A recent study by Cornell University scientists showed several selenium compounds reduce the incidence of prostrate, colorectal and lung cancer.
"Selenium is only needed in very small amounts, but it is essential for animal life," she said. Butler's studies of pregnant women in Oregon and New Zealand showed selenium levels decline during pregnancy until birth, when they rise again to normal levels. Selenium supplements maintained normal levels throughout pregnancy until just prior to delivery.
She and Whanger said similar patterns were found in Chinese women suffering from selenium deficiency. Their children suffer from Keshan disease, a cardiomyopathy heart ailment. "The problem is greatest after the children have been weaned," Butler said. "Until then the mother's milk, which contains a beneficial enzyme, offers some protection to the child. But the mother's selenium level goes dangerously low. In effect, the mother sacrifices her own body reserves to put the enzyme in the milk for her child." The enzyme is glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px). It converts peroxides to other compounds that are not harmful. Peroxides are breakdown products of fatty acids that damage cell membranes, causing rapid aging and damage to the skin. Selenium supplements reduce these problems, Whanger said. Last Update:Tuesday, 12-Aug-1997 17:23:20 PDT firstname.lastname@example.org
Brazil nuts, like peanuts, can become contaminated on the surface with molds and mildew. This can happen, when the nuts stay on the ground for too long before being harvested. Here is how you can remove most of the mold and toxins that may be present.
Place one or two pounds of Brazil nuts into a large sieve or strainer. Pour either of the following solutions over the nuts.
a. Two quarts of ozonated water or
b. add 1/4 cup of 3% hydrogen peroxide to 2 quarts of warm water.
Pour either solution over the nuts, stir and mix. Let stand one minute.
Then, pour two quarts of hot tap or boiling water over the nuts to rinse them. After letting them drain for a few minutes. Then, quickly dry them with any of the following methods:
1. Spread nuts single layer in a pan and sun dry or preheat oven to 300 degrees F and place in oven for 4 minutes. Remove and let air dry for 30 minutes. A hair dryer should also work to dry them quickly.
2. Store in a glass jar in the freezer until ready to use.
Once you sterilize, rinse and dry the Brazil nuts, you will find that the flavor of the nuts improves. You are less likely to bite into an occasional bitter nut. You can now use the Brazil nuts alone or with almonds to make fresh nut milk. An easy recipe is 1/4th cup of sterilized Brazil nuts and 1/4 cup of almonds. Add to blender with 2 cups of filtered water, one teaspoon of lecithin granules and 1/2 tsp. of vanilla. Blend at high speed for 2 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh strainer for a fine milk. Refrigerate until used. Enjoy.
Paul M, who lives in West Allis, walked into my office last week with a book by John Boik titled Natural Compounds in Cancer Therapy. This book is, in my opinion, one of the most carefully researched books on natural cancer treatments ever written. Published by Oregon Medical Press LLC., 315 10th Ave N, Princeton, MN 55371 763-389-0768. www.ompress.com.
The book has the endorsement of 6 medical doctors, 5 of whom are oncologists that specialize in cancer therapy. This book likely has more scientific analysis of natural therapies for cancer than any other that has been published to date. The 500 plus pages covers a wide range of topics supported by good clinical and scientific data. What a great treasurehouse of information. I highly recommend it for the health care professional and the informed public and certainly friends of cancer victims. In a nutshell, here is what Boik states about the action of selenium in preventing or treating cancer.
Selenium induces apoptosis at the cellular level, inhibits PKC, inhibits NF-KB/AP-1 activity, improves cell to cell communication, inhibits angiogenisis, inhibits histamine, inhibits tumor necrosis factor, inhibits VEGF effects, inhibits insulin resistance, inhibits invasion and metastasis, inhibits collagenase effects and supports the immune system.
At the average equivalent of 3700 mcg daily, Boik cites scientific studies that in animals selenium inhibited metastasis of melanoma cells, Ehlrich ascites cells in mice, several different cancer cell lines, brain cancer, some types of leukemia, breast cancer and lung cancer. Other researchers have found selenium inhibits prostate cancer.
In support of the position that sodium selenite, the inorganic form, should not be used as a dietary supplement, Boik states that the sodium selenite has been reported to cause DNA strand breaks in cancer cells in vitro, probably via free radicals and/or SAM deficiency, and to induce p53 dependent apoptosis. In contrast, methylselenocysteine and organic related forms act through a different means: they appear to induce apoptosis independent of DNA damage and p53 activity. Boik also states: Of the organic forms, methylselenocysteine, and.........selenomethionine, are among those causing the least adverse effects at high doses, since they can be converted directly to methylselenol without methyl donors......Methylselenol is of prime importance to us, since this form seems to be responsible for seleniums anticancer effects in vivo.
It should be noted that both the cysteine and methionine forms bound of selenium are found naturally in Brazil nuts and also garlic, onions and seafood.
References for the fact sheet on selenium provided by the National Institute of Health
1. National Research Council. Food and Nutrition Board. Recommended Dietary Allowances. 10th ed. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1989
2. Combs GF, Jr and Gray WP. Chemopreventive agents: Selenium. Pharmacol Ther 1998;79:179-92.
3.Levander OA. Nutrition and newly emerging viral diseases: An overview. J Nutr 1997;127:948S-950S.
4. Arthur JR. The role of selenium in thyroid hormone metabolism. Can J Physiol Pharmacol 1991;69:1648-52.
5. Corvilain B, Contempre B, Longombe AO, Goyens P, Gervy-Decoster C, Lamy F, Vanderpas JB, Dumont JE. Selenium and the thyroid: How the relationship was established. Am J Clin Nutr 1993;57 (2 Suppl):244S-248S.
6. Longnecker MP, Taylor PR, Levander OA, Howe M, Weillon C, McAdam PA, Patterson KY, Holden JM, Stampfer MJ, Morris JS, Willett WC. Selenium in diet, blood, and toenails in relation to human health in a seleniferous area. Am J Clin Nutr 1991;53;1288-94.
7. Pennington JA and Schoen SA. Contributions of food groups to estimated intakes of nutritional elements: Results from the FDA total diet studies, 1982-91. Int J Vitam Nutr Res 1996;66:342-9.
8.Pennington JA and Young BE. Total diet study nutritional elements. J Am Diet Assoc 1991;91:179-83.
9.Institute of Medicine, Food and Nutrition Board. Dietary Reference Intakes: Vitamin C, vitamin E, Selenium, and Carotenoids. National Academy Press, Washington, DC, 2000.
10.Pennington JA. Intakes of minerals from diets and foods: Is there a need for concern? J Nutrition 1996;126:2304S-2308S.
11.Levander OA and Beck MA. Interacting nutritional and infectious etiologies of Keshan disease. Insights from coxsackie virus B-induced myocarditis in mice deficient in selenium or vitamin E. Biol Trace Elem Res 1997;56:5-21.
12.Levander OA. Scientific rationale for the 1989 recommended dietary allowance for selenium. J Am Diet Assoc 1991;91:1572-1576.
13.Itokawa Y. Trace elements in long-term total parenteral nutrition. Nippon Rinsho 1996;54:172-8.
14.Abrams CK, Siram SM, Galsim C, Johnson-Hamilton H, Munford FL, Mezghebe H. Selenium deficiency in long-term total parenteral nutrition. Nutr Clin Pract 1992;7:175-8.
15.Gramm HJ, Kopf A, Bratter P. The necessity of selenium substitution in total parenteral nutrition and artificial alimentation. J Trace Elem Med Biol 1995;9:1-12.
16.Rannem T, Ladefoged K, Hylander E, Hegnhoj J, Staun M. Selenium depletion in patients with gastrointestinal diseases: Are there any predictive factors? Scand J Gastroenterol 1998;33:1057-61.
17.Rannem T, Ladefoged K, Hylander E, Hegnhoj J, Jarnum S. Selenium status in patients with Crohn's disease. Am J Clin Nutr 1992;56:933-7.
18.Bjerre B, von Schenck H, Sorbo B. Hyposelaemia: Patients with gastrointestinal diseases are at risk. J Intern Med 1989;225:85-8.
19.Russo MW, Murray SC, Wurzelmann JI, Woosley JT, Sandler RS. Plasma selenium levels and the risk of colorectal adenomas. Nutr Cancer 1997;28:125-9.
20.Patterson BH and Levander OA. Naturally occurring selenium compounds in cancer chemoprevention trials: A workshop summary. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 1997;6:63-9.
21.Knekt P, Marniemi J, Teppo L, Heliovaara M, Aromaa A. Is low selenium status a risk factor for lung cancer? Am J Epidemiol 1998;148:975-82.
22.Fleet JC. Dietary selenium repletion may reduce cancer incidence in people at high risk who live in areas with low soil selenium. Nutr Rev 1997;55:277-9.
23.Shamberger RJ. The genotoxicity of selenium. Mutat Res 1985;154:29-48.
24.Young KL and Lee PN. Intervention studies on cancer. Eur J Cancer Prev 1999;8:91-103.
25.Burguera JL, Burguera M, Gallignani M, Alarcon OM, Burgueera JA. Blood serum selenium in the province of Merida, Venezuela, related to sex, cancer incidence and soil selenium content. J Trace Elem Electrolytes Health Dis 1990;4:73-77.
26.Combs GF, Jr., Clark LC, Turnbull BW. Reduction of cancer risk with an oral supplement of selenium. Biomed Environ Sci 1997;10:227-34.
27.Garland M, Morris JS, Stampfer MJ, Colditz GA, Spate VL, Baskett CK, Rosner B, Speier FE, Willett WC, Hunter DJ. Prospective study of toenail selenium levels and cancer among women. J Natl Cancer Inst 1995;87:497-505.
28.Hercberg S, Galan P, Preziosi P, Roussel AM, Arnaud J, Richard MJ, Malvy D, Paul-Dauphin A, Briancon S, Favier A. Background and rationale behind the SU.VI.MAX Study, a prevention trial using nutritional doses of a combination of antioxidant vitamins and minerals to reduce cardiovascular diseases and cancers. Supplementation en VItamines et Mineraux AntiXydants Study. Int J Vitam Nutr Res 1998;68:3-20.
29.Gey KF. Vitamins E plus C and interacting conutrients required for optimal health. A critical and constructive review of epidemiology and supplementation data regarding cardiovascular disease and cancer. Biofactors 1998;7:113-74.
30.Ozer NK, Boscoboinik D, Azzi A. New roles of low density lipoproteins and vitamin E in the pathogenesis of atherosclerosis. Biochem Mol Biol Int 1995;35:117-24.
31.Lapenna D, de Gioia S, Ciofani G, Mezzetti A, Ucchino S, Calafiore AM, Napolitano AM, Di Ilio C, Cuccurulo F. Glutathione-related antioxidant defenses in human atherosclerotic plaques. Circulation 1998;97:1930-4.
32.Neve J. Selenium as a risk factor for cardiovascular diseases. J Cardiovasc Risk 1996;3:42-7.
33.Kose K, Dogan P, Kardas Y, Saraymen R. Plasma selenium levels in rheumatoid arthritis. Biol Trace Elem Res 1996;53:51-6.
34.Heliovaara M, Knekt P, Aho K, Aaran RK, Alfthan G, Aromaa A. Serum antioxidants and risk of rheumatoid arthritis. Ann Rheum Dis 1994;53:51-53.
35.Stone J, Doube A, Dudson D, Wallace J. Inadequate calcium, folic acid, vitamin E, zinc, and selenium intake in rheumatoid arthritis patients: Results of a dietary survey. Semin Arthritis Rheum 1997;27:180-5.
36.Grimble RF. Nutritional antioxidants and the modulation of inflammation: Theory and practice. New Horizons 1994;2:175-185.
37.AasethJ, Haugen M, Forre O. Rheumatoid arthritis and metal compounds-perspectives on the role of oxygen radical detoxification. Analyst 1998;123:3-6.
38.Patrick L. Nutrients and HIV; Part One--Beta carotene and selenium. Altern Med Rev 1999;4:403-13.
39.Baum MK, Shor-Posner G, Lai S, Zhang G, Lai H, Fletcher MA, Sauberlich H, Page JB. High risk of HIV-related mortality is associated with selenium deficiency. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr Hum Retrovirol 1997;15:370-4.
40.Campa A, Shor-Posner G, Indacoche F, Zhang G, Lai H, Asthana D, Scott GB, Baum MK. Mortality risk in selenium-deficient HIV-positive children. J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr Hum Retrovirol 1999;15:508-13.
41. Baum MK and Shor-Posner G. Micronutrient status in relationship to mortality in HIV-1 disease. Nutr Rev 1998;56:S135-9.
42. Koller LD and Exon JH. The two faces of selenium-deficiency and toxicity-are similar in animals and man. Can J Vet Res 1986;50:297-306.
43. Hathcock J. Vitamins and minerals: Efficacy and safety. Am J Clin Nutr 1997;66:427-37.
44. Raisbeck MF, Dahl ER, Sanchez DA, Belden EL, O'Toole D. Naturally occurring selenosis in Wyoming. J Vet Diagn Invest 1993;5:84-87.
45. Pennington JA, Young BE, Wilson DB, Johnson RD, Vanderveen JE. Mineral content of foods and total diets: The Selected Minerals in Foods Survey, 1982-1984. J Am Diet Assoc 1986;86:876-91.
46. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 12. : Nutrient Data Lab Home Page. URL http:://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp 1998.
Note: There will be no monthly report of Progessive Health News in April as I will be working on the next issue of Positive Health News (Report No 24).
Keep Hope Alive, PO Box 270041, West Allis, WI 53227 email@example.com
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Utah, Gerry K reports that he has been using 8 capsules of Jarrow Formulas Selenium Synergy daily since early October, 2001, along with about 7 Immax tablets (Natural Immune Intelligence). He reports his viral load has declined in increments from 19,000 in August to 13,000 in October to 7000 in November and now the latest results of 400 taken just before Christmas. He also reports his CD4 counts have increased from 367 to 436. He has not used any prescription drugs to treat HIV since 1999 when the use of protease inhibitors decreased his viral load from 775,000 to non-detectable levels. After reaching non-detectable levels he stopped using the drugs after developing side effects.
He states that in the past 2 years his viral load never went over 19000. He has tried many alternative therapies in an attempt to control the virus without going back to the drug cocktails. His latest lab results indicates he is making progress toward this goal.
Gerry reports he uses the lemon/olive oil drink twice a week and also does an enema with garlic and vinegar added about once a week. He also uses a Rife technology unit that emits light frequencies called a Plasma Jr. The device is suppose to kill infections in the person with light waves. He had earlier used an expensive device called the Bio-Ray that he now says was not effective. Occasionally he also uses ozone. His diet is average. He takes B-12, Beta carotene, a multiple vitamin/mineral formula and once a day Bio Pro Thymic Protein A. He says he drinks dark imported beer in moderation. For more information, Gerry can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Gerry reported that before adding the selenium, high doses of IMMAX had brought down his viral load, but the decline in viral titers picked up speed when Jarrow Formulas Selenium synergy was added (8 capsules daily).
It should be noted here that Gerry did not eat Brazil nuts, something I have recommended for several months. The next article analyzes and suggests that the Riboflavin and vitamin E in the Selenium formula used by Gerry may have contributed to his extraordinary results.
Several published sources report that Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) and Vitamin E enhance the effectiveness of selenium and may decrease the need for the amount of selenium in the diet. Riboflavin has been reported to help recycle oxidized glutathione back to its reduced form where it can again function as an antioxidant.
Research in India found that vitamin A, Riboflavin, selenium and zinc supplementation in 150 persons reduced pre-cancerous lesions in the palate as compared to controls.
(1) In Israel, rats exposed to oxidative stress (hyperbaric oxygen) and supplemented with vitamin E, Selenium and Riboflavin showed higher levels of glutathione reductase, glutathione peroxidase, SOD and glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G-6-PD) than controls. Increases in G-6-PD were only observed in rats supplemented with Riboflavin. (2)
Rafal P et al report that in growing pigs fed selenium, Vitamin E and riboflavin, cell mediated immunity improved and stated:
Feed supplementation exerted a beneficial ....influence on the indices of cell-mediated immunity. The proportion of rosette-forming cells and blastogenic transformation induced by specific (horse globulin) and nonspecific (PHA) mitogens underwent the most expressed and most significant increase in pigs fed 5 mg selenium, 100 mg vitamin E and 5 mg riboflavin per KG of feed. (3)
Note: The feed contained 5 mg selenium per 2.2 pounds (Kilogram). 5 mg is the same as 5000 mcg. I am pointing this out because of the trivial amounts of selenium recommended in many mainstream or alternative and nutritional publications. Unfortunately, too many writers copy each others ideas, even if erroneous and dont do their own homework. There are probably a million cases of cancer in the US alone that could be prevented each year if the amount of vitamin A and selenium that people consumed daily were tripled over their present levels.
Keeping the public misinformed on the subject of using more vitamin A and selenium will only benefit the multi-billion dollar cancer industry (chemotherapy, radiation and surgery) while driving up the cost of national health care.
Researchers found that in young pigs, riboflavin caused a decrease in urinary secretion of selenium thus increasing the retention of the trace mineral. (4) This suggests that when vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) is taken with selenium, that it will increase its effectiveness and decrease the amount needed to be used for therapeutic results. The Jarrow Formula called Selenium Synergy contains 2 mg Riboflavin and 30 i.u. vitamin E per capsule along with 100 mcg of yeast-derived selenium per capsule. Jarrow Formulas Selenium Synergy will likely be more effective than taking selenium alone because of the added riboflavin and vitamin E. If a supplement contains only selenium, then riboflavin and vitamin E should also be taken at the same time to increase the effectiveness and create a synergistic result.
Considering that Riboflavin increases ATP production in the cells and ATP helps transports viral antigen to the cell surface, the use of Riboflavin alone would improve cell-mediated immune responses and vitamin E has been reported to help preserve glutathione levels in the cells. It makes sense to combine all three and maximize the benefits.
1. Krishnaswamy K et al; Eur J Cancer Oral Oncol. 1995 Jan;31 B(1):41-8
2. Effects of dietary factors on antioxidant enzymes in rats exposed to hyperbaric oxygen Boadi WY et al; Vet Hum Toxicol. 1991 Apr; 33(2):105-
3. Effect of selenium, vitamin E and riboflavin supplementation of the feed on the humoral and cell-mediated immune responses of growing pigs, by Rafai P et al.; Acta Vet Hung. 1989;37(3):201-17
4. Effects of riboflavin supplementation and selenium source on selenium metabolism in the young pig Parsons MJ et al; J Anim Sci. 1985 Feb;60(2):451-61
A web site referred to by Jose Garcia of Sao Paulo claims that taking 2000 mcg of selenium daily along with vitamin E and C cured him of hepatitis C. The author of the report, Paul Kangas, also reports he used urine therapy in which he places a lot of credit.
However, in the two cases I reported on in Pos. Health News No 23, where 1000 to 1200 mcg daily of selenium was used and reduced hepatitis C viral load up to 94%, urine therapy was not used. While he claims he was cured, I didnt see any published lab results to verify those claims. He is selling an audio cassette tape for $9.00 that describes his experiences. His web site is http://members.tripod.com/paulkangas/hepatitis.html
Because he used very large type size on his web site, I was unable to print it out and review it more closely. You can also write to Paul Kongas ND, PO Box 422644, San Fran, CA 94142. Include a SASE for reply and free audio tape.
Don W., now 72 years of age, is a resident of Franklin, WI. For several years I had known that he had avoided bypass surgery for a partially blocked artery by taking an oral chelation product called Formula No 1 that is high in an amino acid abbreviated as EDTA. For the past half century, EDTA has been used to chelate lead out of the body of persons who have been over exposed to this heavy metal. Many progressive physicians have also used I.V. EDTA to remove calcium plaque from the arterial walls to improve blood flow and circulation and as an alternative to bypass surgery.
In a recent visit, however, Don shared another part of his experiences with Formula 1 (EDTA chelation) that I had previously been unaware of. He stated that in 1993, he had developed a cataract in his left eye and that over a period of a few months, had lost all his sight in the left eye. He had heard that Formula 1 with EDTA could heal Cataracts, so he obtained a bottle and took 4 teaspoons daily. Within 3 weeks, his eyesight was completely restored. Now 9 years later at age 72, his physician recently examined him and found he had 20/20 vision and no change in his eyes.
Don reports that his wife who began to develop a cataract successfully treated it by taking the EDTA oral chelation formula as well. In fact, he said that her vision that was 20/40 four years ago has improved and is now 20/25. Eyesight improving with age!?
Now to tell you about my personal experience with Formula 1; I have used it off and on for the past 6 years. Around 1995, I got a prescription for glasses to use when I drive at night. During this period of time, Formula 1 with EDTA is a supplement that I have taken off and on and not on a regular basis. However, I now believe that my eyesight has actually improved slightly since 1995 as I rarely need my glasses when I drive at night and never wear them during the day. Could the EDTA have been a factor in helping to keep my eyes from deteriorating in the past 6 years?
When the doctor recently examined Don, he told him that his eyes had not changed in 9 years and should have gotten worse. He said I dont understand what is happening here......this is an exception. EDTA is also reported to be an antioxidant. Formula 1 with EDTA is made by Golden Pride/Raleigh. For more inf., call Don at 414-529-1787.
Selenium is an essential trace mineral in the human body (1). This nutrient is an important part of antioxidant enzymes that protect cells against the effects of free radicals that are produced during normal oxygen metabolism. The body has developed defenses such as antioxidants to control levels of free radicals because they can damage cells and contribute to the development of some chronic diseases(2). Selenium is also essential for normal functioning of the immune system and thyroid gland (3-5).
Plant foods are the major dietary sources of selenium in most countries throughout the world. The amount of selenium in soil, which varies by region, determines the amount of selenium in the plant foods that are grown in that soil. Researchers know that soils in the high plains of northern Nebraska and the Dakotas have very high levels of selenium. People living in those regions generally have the highest selenium intakes in the United States (6). Soils in some parts of China and Russia have very low amounts of selenium and dietary selenium deficiency is often reported in those regions. Selenium also can be found in some meats and seafood. Animals that eat grains or plants that were grown in selenium-rich soil have higher levels of selenium in their muscle. In the United States, meats and bread are common sources of dietary selenium (7, 8). Some nuts, in particular Brazil nuts and walnuts, are also very good sources of selenium. The table of food sources of selenium suggests many dietary sources of selenium.
Selenium deficiency is most commonly seen in parts of China where the selenium content in the soil, and therefore selenium intake, is very low. Selenium deficiency is linked to Keshan Disease. The most common signs of selenium deficiency seen in Keshan Disease are an enlarged heart and poor heart function (11). Keshan disease has been observed in low-selenium areas of China, where dietary intake is less than 19 mcg per day for men and less than 13 mcg per day for women (12). This intake is significantly lower than the current RDA for selenium.
Selenium deficiency also may affect thyroid function because selenium is essential for the synthesis of active thyroid hormone (4). Researchers also believe selenium deficiency may worsen the effects of iodine deficiency on thyroid function, and that adequate selenium nutritional status may help protect against some of the neurologic effects of iodine deficiency (5).
Selenium deficiency has been seen in people who rely on total parenteral nutrition (TPN) as their sole source of nutrition (13, 14). TPN is a method of feeding nutrients through an intravenous (IV) line to people whose digestive systems do not function. Forms of nutrients that do not require digestion are dissolved in liquid and infused through the IV line. It is important for TPN solutions to provide selenium in order to prevent a deficiency (15). Physicians can monitor the selenium status of individuals receiving TPN to make sure they are receiving adequate amounts. Severe gastrointestinal disorders may decrease the absorption of selenium, resulting in selenium depletion or deficiency (16). Gastrointestinal problems that impair selenium absorption usually affect absorption of other nutrients as well, and require routine monitoring of nutritional status so that physicians can recommend appropriate treatment (16).
Selenium supplementation is essential for anyone relying on TPN as the sole source of nutrition, and selenium supplementation has become routine during TPN administration since the relationship between selenium deficiency and TPN was discovered (15). Gastrointestinal disorders such as Crohn's disease can impair selenium absorption. Most cases of selenium depletion or deficiency are associated with severe gastrointestinal problems, such as in individuals who have had over half of their small intestines surgically removed (17). A physician, who will determine the need for selenium supplementation, should evaluate individuals who have gastrointestinal disease and depleted blood levels of selenium (18).
Some studies indicate that mortality (death) from cancer, including lung, colorectal, and prostate cancers, is lower among people with higher selenium blood levels or intake (19-25). Also, the incidence of nonmelanoma skin cancer is significantly higher in areas of the United States with low soil selenium levels (22). The effect of selenium supplementation on the recurrence of these types of skin cancers was studied in seven dermatology clinics in the US from 1983 through the early 1990s. Supplementation with 200 mcg selenium daily did not affect recurrence of skin cancer, but significantly reduced total mortality and mortality from cancers. In addition, incidence of prostate cancer, colorectal cancer, and lung cancer was lower in the group given selenium supplements (26).
However, not all studies have shown a relationship between selenium status and cancer. In 1982, over 60,000 participants of the Nurses Health Study with no history of cancer submitted toenail clippings for selenium analysis. Toenail analysis is thought to reflect selenium status over the previous year. After three and one-half years, researchers compared the toenail selenium levels of nurses with and without cancer. They did not find any apparent benefit of higher selenium levels (27).
These conflicting results emphasize the need for additional research on the relationship between selenium and chronic diseases such as cancer. A study that may help answer some of the questions about the effect of selenium supplementation on cancer risk has started in France. The Supplementation en Vitamines et Mineraux AntiXydants, or SU.VI.MAX Study, is a prevention trial that is providing doses of antioxidant vitamins and minerals that are one to three times higher than recommended intakes, including a daily supplement of 100 mcg selenium. More than 12,000 men and women are being followed for eight years to determine the effect of supplementation on the incidence of chronic disease, such as cancers and cardiovascular disease (28).
Some population surveys have indicated an association between a lower antioxidant intake with a greater incidence of heart disease (29). Additional lines of evidence suggest that oxidative stress from free radicals may promote heart disease (30). For example, it is the oxidized form of low-density lipoproteins (LDL, often called "bad" cholesterol) that promotes plaque build-up in coronary arteries (31). Selenium is one of a group of antioxidants that may help limit the oxidation of LDL cholesterol and thereby help to prevent coronary artery disease (30, 32). Currently there is insufficient evidence available to recommend selenium supplements for the prevention of coronary heart disease.
Surveys of patients with rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic disease that causes pain, stiffness, swelling, and loss of function in joints, have indicated that they have reduced selenium levels in their blood (33, 34). In addition, some individuals with arthritis have a low selenium intake (35). The body's immune system naturally makes free radicals that can help destroy invading organisms and damaged tissue, but that can also harm healthy tissue (36). Selenium, as an antioxidant, may help control levels of free radicals and help to relieve symptoms of arthritis (37). Current findings are considered preliminary, and further research is needed before selenium supplements can be recommended for individuals with arthritis.
HIV / AIDS related malabsorption can deplete levels of many nutrients. Selenium deficiency is commonly associated with HIV / AIDS, and has been associated with a high risk of death from this disease (38, 39). Of 24 children with HIV who were observed for five years, those with low selenium levels died at a younger age, which may indicate faster disease progression (40). An examination of 125 HIV positive men and women also associated selenium deficiency with mortality (39). Researchers believe that selenium may be important in HIV disease because of its role in the immune system and as an antioxidant. Selenium also may be needed for the replication of the HIV virus, which could deplete host levels of selenium (38).
Researchers are actively investigating the role of selenium in HIV / AIDS, and see a need for clinical trials that evaluate the effect of selenium supplementation on HIV disease progression (41). END OF EXCERPTS FROM THE NIH REPORT ON SELENIUM
Editor's Note: The NIH reports that at 400 mcg daily or less of selenium, there is absolutely no risk of ever overdosing on selenium and having side effects (i.e. hair loose falling out) . I couldnt agree more, except that not all selenium supplements are created equal and that the great curative potentials of using natural selenium compounds for treating cancer, AIDS, hepatitis and arthritis is in the range of 1000 to 2000 mcg daily. That issue is not addressed by the NIH.
HEALTH CARE PROFESSIONALS ARE URGED TO VISIT THE MESSAGE BOARD LINKED TO OUR WEB SITE AND TO HELP ANSWERS MANY OF THE QUESTIONS THAT ARE NOW POSTED. THANKS.
Copyright 2002 Keep Hope Alive, PO Box 270041, West Allis, WI 53227 www.keephope.net email@example.com
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The articles on selenium that started with the September, 2001, issue of this newsletter and subsequently in Positive Health News (#23) have brought us mail about the work of the late Emanuel Revici, MD, whose used extremely high doses of selenium attached to lipids (fats) in the treatment of cancer, AIDS and Alzheimers. Revici, born in 1896 in Romania, developed more than 100 treatments for various illnesses and conditions during his career.
Revici fled from Paris, France, in 1941 and escaped the Nazi occupied area. He and hundreds of other refugees later took a boat that landed in Havana, Cuba. He first settled in Mexico and later moved to New York. Revici was fascinated with research all his life. It has been said that in his 74 years as a physician, he never turned away a patient because they were too ill or had no money. In 1937, Revici submitted 5 scientific papers to the Pasteur Institute in Paris on lipids and cancer. All 5 papers were accepted for publication. Revicis growing fame and unconventional ideas brought him critics.
In the late 1940s, the AMA in its official publication, JAMA, criticized Revici for his unconventional lipid theories. Revici may have fallen into disfavor with the establishment as he manufactured most of the medicines he used on his patients in his own lab. His career lasted until 1997 when he celebrated his 100th birthday. Among persons sending him congratulatory letters were Rep. Charles Rangel, Gov. Petaki and then President Bill Clinton. Revici passed away at 101 years of age in 1998.
As I read this 350 page book (The Doctor who Cures Cancer by William Kelley Eidem), I marvel at Revicis ingenuity and what he accomplished and yearn to learn more. I admire the convictions of this man who swam against the tide of current opinion and developed new and promising treatments and did not buckle before critics.
The book The Doctor Who Cures Cancer, by William Kelley Eidem, has a forward by a retired Oncologist, Seymour Brenner MD. Brenner who acknowledged earning a 7 figure salary for several years before he retired says this about Revici:
Dr. Revici has cured many people who were otherwise considered incurable. It is my professional opinion that his medicines have worked for many of the patients whose records I have examined.
Eidem writes about Revici that he has given patients doses of selenium thousands of times above the level considered safe without any signs of a toxic reaction. Revici would bind selenium to the middle of a lipid molecule to make his treatment non-toxic when used at extremely high doses. Precisely how he did this or made his more than 100 other discoveries is not disclosed except in bits and pieces. What is reported is that high doses of selenium were used in the treatment of cancer, AIDS and even Alzheimers. Eidem reported that Revici cured many people of brain, pancreatic and breast cancer. Many of Revicis lipid compounds were injected while others were taken orally.
Revici had a theory that the lipid layers in the membranes of cells had a protective role to play in the function of the cell and that the structure of the lipids or fats could either impair or support that function. Revici considered the health of the individual cell as the foundation of the persons health and of the cells inherit immunity.
Eidem reports in his book about Revici that in 1987, Revici wrote a 5000 word article in the Townsend Letter for Doctors on his method of treating AIDS patients and included several case histories. According to the author of the book, Revici done tests to show that while sterols promoted viruses, certain fatty acids inhibited them.
Revicis methods reportedly involved injections of fatty acids bound with other substances like selenium. According to Eidem, Revici used fatty acids that had either a double negative or double positive bond. He compared the bonds to two magnets with the same polarity. You have to exert considerable force to keep them together. Thus, such fatty acids were considered a source of extra energy. Eidem identified one such fatty acid as glycerol and reported that it had triplet formation and that according to Revici had effective value in countering problems caused by abnormal fatty acids. Glycerol is also known as glycerin. Did Revici bond selenium to glycerin? Glycerin has been used for years by various pharmaceutical companies in the manufacture of different medicines. Some vegetable oils and notably olive oil contain glycerol. Revici also used phospholipids without specifying the type such as lecithin.
While I havent had the time to locate the Revici article on AIDS, I will be searching for it to review and report on in the future. I am fascinated by Revicis research because his treatments hold the promise of not only safety, effectiveness and low cost but have the markings of components of a future AIDS cure.
In Eidems book, he discusses a case of an AIDS patient treated by Revici whose CD4/CD8 ratio increased to 1.6 (normal is 1.8) after several months with restoration of normal CD4 cell counts going from 188 to over 900. In Zimbabwe at the James Mobb clinic, Revicis treatments are reported by Eidem in 1997 to be more effective even than the protease inhibitors. Today Revicis therapies are being carried on by Joseph Carozza MD at The Revici Center, 200 W. 57th St, #1201, NY, NY 212-246-5122.
The book The Doctor Who Cures Cancer by Eidem can be obtained from the Book Clearinghouse - 914-835-0015 or www.bookch.com.
Options, The Alternative Cancer Therapy Book, by Richard Walters (Avery Publishing, 1993) discusses Revicis use of selenium in treating cancer. He states:
Revicis use of selenium in the treatment of cancer predates mainstream interest in this mineral by more than twenty years. Selenium is one of the major trace elements always found deficient in cancer-prone populations. Research has shown that it is of value not only in preventing cancer but in treating it. Revici used a special molecular form of selenium (bivalent-negative selenium) incorporated in a molecule of fatty acids. In this form, he can administer up to 1 gram of selenium per day, which corresponds to one million micrograms per day, reportedly with no toxic side effects.....In a 140-patient study of cancer victims treated with selenium, Dr. R Donaldson of the St. Louis Veterans Adm Hospital reported in 1983 that some patients deemed terminal with only weeks to live were completely free of all signs of cancer.
Could the Revici method of binding selenium to lipids already exist naturally in fish, seafood and Brazil nuts? Could this be why no recorded cases of selenium toxicity have ever been reported by persons eating these selenium rich foods? For example, in Japan, consumption of selenium from food sources averages 600 mcg daily while in Northern Greenland, it is over 1300 mcg daily. There is nothing in the published literature to suggest any adverse effects even after decades of consuming these amounts. To date, selenium toxicity has been relegated to inorganic sodium selenite and other sources that are not bound to lipids.
Case report: Last month, one of our readers called to learn of suggestions for treating HPV. This is not an area that we have had much success with in recent years. Considering the dramatic reduction in hepatitis C viral loads with therapeutic doses of selenium and the subsequent apparent success with HIV, I thought, why not test it out on HPV and even other persistent intracellular viral infections (HHV-6 A and B, CMV, EBV etc.). I suggested that the reader, a married women, who weighed only 120 lbs try 600 mcg daily of selenium, taking 400 mcg daily in the capsule form of high-selenium yeast plus 3 Brazil nuts that would have an average of 75 mcg of selenium per nut including some in the form of L seleno-cysteine, thought to be a highly effective form.
Calculating TDA: The estimated amount is based on our present working formula of taking 100 mcg of selenium per 20 pounds of body weight. 120 ¸20 = 6. Six times 100 = 600 mcg of selenium for a Therapeutic Daily Amount or (TDA).
Her husband wanted to do even more and asked about adding BHT (Butylated Hydroxy Toluene), a powerful antioxidant. I told him it was used mainly for herpes types infections and thought it would not hurt to give it a try since the alternative to uncontrolled HPV eventually is cervical cancer or surgery. Early in December, his wife began using the 600 mcg daily of selenium and took one 250 mg BHT capsule once a day with a meal that contained fat. The fat is to help with the absorption of the BHT. Some people pre-dissolve BHT in olive oil before using it.
After two weeks, she returned to the physician who expressed surprise that the HPV warts had reduced in size. He said: this is rare; usually they stay the same or get worse. Note: This is the first reported case of reducing HPV using selenium and BHT together. Hopefully, the good results will continue.
Robert W. who has never used a prescription drug cocktail for HIV sent me his lab results over the past 4 years. Over this 4 year period, he had been taking 200 mcg of selenium daily but the dose was not sufficient to stop a gradual decline in his CD4 counts or the slow increase in the viral load that fluctuated from 400 to 32,000. In November, when his CD4 count dropped to 220 and his viral load was 18,624. He told me he planned to go on a 3 part drug cocktail (Viramune, Zerit and Epivir) after Jan 1, 2002. Meanwhile, he decided to increase his selenium to 1200 mcg daily starting after this last result. On December 13th, after using the selenium at this higher dose for 5 weeks and making no other changes to his protocol, he had labs done and these are the results.
Nov 8th- CD4-220 CD8-492 bDNA-18,624
After using 1200 mcg selenium for 5 weeks
Dec 13th CD4- 221 CD8-618 bDNA-12,703
While increasing the selenium from 200 mcg to 1200 mcg daily only increased the CD4s by 1 (220 to 221), he added 126 to his CD8s (492 to 618) and decreased his viral load by 5,921 (from 18624 to 12703).
While the results were nowhere as dramatic as Karen M as reported in December, 2001, Robert W has never used any prescription drugs to treat HIV since his diagnosis in February, 1996. What we see today are the results of a 5 week span of time using 1200 mcg daily of selenium. We also have to consider that the mere 200 mcg of selenium he used daily over the past 5 years may have contributed to his being a slow progresser and delaying the need to use prescription drugs to treat his HIV until now.
While Robert has apparently made up his mind to start on a drug cocktail after 1/1/02, he said he will also continue to use the 1200 mcg of selenium daily. It would have been interesting if he had tried the higher dose of selenium earlier and we would have had a longer period of time to observe the results of this higher dosage level to determine if a higher dosage level could completely stop HIV progression to AIDS when the CD4 counts are 300 or higher. Robert W can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: At this juncture I doubt that high doses of selenium alone will reverse AIDS when the CD4 count has dropped below 200, but I could be wrong. If the results of Karen M (December, 2001, monthly report) can be duplicated, then the possibility that therapeutic doses of selenium could be used in place of a drug cocktail allowing for a very extended treatment interruption from the use of drug cocktails becomes a tantalizing possibility.
June Wiles who teaches the Carey Reams method of diagnosis writes in a December newsletter that
Selenium will remove ferritin from white blood cells (ferritin helps gobble up asbestos). With ferritin gone asbestos can be gone too - but more importantly, with ferritin gone, phenol and ascaris parasites will be disabled and discarded as well as flushing bacteria and toxins. It may require up to 3000 mcg of selenium daily to unload the enemy. Fresh coconut meat for four days will help with removal of all ascaris. Using 1000 mcg of selenium per day for 3 to 6 months may also assist removal of tumors.
June Wiles - ph no. 813-977-1000
Note: What is interesting is that independent of Keep Hope Alive, June Wiles, who has been a nutritional consultant for over 20 years, claims 1000 mcg of selenium daily may help get rid of tumors and 3000 mcg daily to help unload parasites and asbestos. Wow! I am also waiting to hear from Jose from Brazil about an email message he received in the Spring of 2001 that 2000 to 3000 mcg of selenium daily can cure Hepatitis C. So far, Jose has been unable to find the original email with that message.
As long as the blood levels of selenium do not exceed 600 mcg per liter of blood, there should be no side effects, even from higher doses of 2000 to 3000 mcg of selenium daily as long as natural selenium is used and not sodium selenite. Selenium that is derived from yeast or garlic is bound to the amino acids methionine or cysteine or both as in Brazil Nuts and fish. Liquid Selenium usually has sodium selenite in it and should be avoided in high doses (more than 1000 mcg daily). A physician can monitor the blood levels of selenium.
Several readers in December began using the new Message Board that is linked to Keep Hope Alivess web site at www.keephope.net. To date, about 50 original or reply messages have been posted but the number grows daily. I read all the messages and add my comments when they are appropriate. Some new information or discoveries derived from the Message Board or Chat rooms of our readers may be used in this and future publications of Positive Health News.
In addition to the Message Board, five Chat rooms are expected to go on-line (linked to our web site) on January 10th, 2002. The 5 chat rooms include CFIDS/FM, Hepatitis, Cancer, HIV and one All Health Topics room for all other health related issues.
There are no user names or passwords as of now for either the Message Board or the Chat rooms. The most valuable use of the Message Board is for readers to write about and share their personal testimonial experiences. Those who have had success in solving health-related problems will have the most to offer and share and are encouraged to do so and everyone is asked to share either their email address or personal phone number so readers may contact them for more information. Detailed specific information that covers a full range of treatment modalities is especially welcome. These not only include prescription drugs and over the counter dietary supplements, but acupuncture, diet, detox programs, exercise, prayer, music , Reiki, attitude and other treatments, even aromatherapy. Persons are encouraged to take as much time and space as is needed to get all the information into their own personal story before posting it.
The Message Board will not be allowed to be used as a marketing forum. 800 numbers, other website addresses, are not allowed to be posted within a message. The policies on how to use the Message Board are explained on our website. Everyone should read the policy statement so their message does not get removed after posting.
Messages posted in the Chat room are either Live Chat or archived (previously saved messages). All messages written in the Chat rooms will remain on-line for 30 days before being automatically deleted. A message I posted earlier today that Chat room messages would be deleted after 14 days is incorrect. The webmaster told me he has set the time for 30 days, the maximum allowed with the software being used.
Persons planning to use the Chat rooms initially should tune in around 9 p.m. Central Standard Time wherever you happen to be on the planet. In Asia or Western Australia, that will probably be about 9 am in the morning. When entering each Chat room, you must first pre-select to enter as either Live Chat or to read the previously saved messages. After reading previously saved messages, you can leave the Chat room and then re-enter for Live Chat.
One more thing. When reading the posted messages on the Message Board, if you point the arrow from the mouse to the persons name, their email address should show up on the bottom of the screen. That is, if they wrote down their email address when posting a message or reply. Then, you can use any private email program to contact them directly if you desire.
I hope this answers most questions. The Message Board and the Chat Room setup is a new experience for me as it will be for viewers of the web site. It is a learning experience for all of us. It allows people of like mind and goals to share experiences and ends our individual isolation. For this new inter-active experience, we can all be grateful. Health care professionals are encouraged to visit the Message Board and Chat rooms and offer helpful commentary where it is needed.
Copyright 2002 Keep Hope Alive, PO Box 270041, West Allis, WI 53227 www.keephopealive.org
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