Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Have You Had Mono?

Did you have Mononucleosis?

 

mono

Millions of young Americans have lived through the fatigue and discomfort of mononucleosis.

Now, new research suggests, but doesn’t prove, that the virus that causes the illness may be linked to an increased risk for seven other serious immune-system diseases.

Those diseases include lupus; multiple sclerosis; rheumatoid arthritis; juvenile idiopathic arthritis; inflammatory bowel disease; celiac disease, crohns disease and type 1 diabetes.

“Mono” is a contagious illness that occurs most often in teens and young adults. It’s caused by the Epstein-Barr virus, one of the most common human viruses.

“Epstein-Barr virus infects over 90 percent of adults, and the infection lasts for a lifetime,” said study lead author Dr. John Harley.

“The new results are building a strong case that this virus is also involved in causing a number of autoimmune diseases for at least some patients,” added Harley. He is director of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Center for Autoimmune Genomics and Etiology.

“It is the kind of circumstantial evidence that is comparable to a smoking gun,” he added.

And those seven diseases affect roughly 8 million Americans, Harley and his colleagues said.

However, one expert said people who have had mono shouldn’t panic.

The findings “should not be a cause for alarm,” said Dr. David Pisetsky, a professor of medicine at the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, N.C.

“In modern life everyone has been exposed and infected with Epstein-Barr,” he noted. “And if 99 percent of people have been exposed to Epstein-Barr, and only 0.1 percent have lupus, it means there really must be other factors at play that affect risk,” Pisetsky explained.

“I really don’t think it’s a reason for undue concern,” he added. Pisetsky is also on the scientific advisory board for the Lupus Research Alliance.

Harley’s in-depth genetic analysis revealed that at the cellular level, the Epstein-Barr virus shares a number of abnormal viral on-off switches (“transcription factors”) in common with those seven other illnesses.

Those transcription factors are meant to move along the human genome (DNA roadmap), jumpstarting cells into performing necessary tasks.

But the abnormal switches found in Epstein-Barr hijack this process. First, they bind to a specific protein — known as EBNA2. Then they move about the genome in search of disease trigger points. Once docked at a respective trigger point, the risk for that particular disease goes up, the new research suggests.

Harley said he and other scientists will continue to examine additional factors that likely also contribute to autoimmune risk. Autoimmune diseases occur when your immune system mistakenly attacks your body.

 

 

As the cause of mononucleosis, Epstein-Barr is typically transmitted via saliva, giving rise to its nickname as the “kissing disease.”

Kids and teens with mono may have a fever, muscle aches and sore throat. They often feel exhausted. However, many people — especially young children — experience no symptoms. And in most cases, mono resolves within a couple of weeks.

The new findings stem from an extensive genetic review of potential links between the Epstein-Barr virus and roughly 200 illnesses. However, the study could not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.

The review actually uncovered preliminary links to 94 additional diseases, including breast cancer. But Harley’s team said further investigation is needed to confirm those associations.

Tim Coetzee is chief advocate for services and research with the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. He characterizes the new findings as “an important contribution.”

“We need these kinds of studies to help us unravel how this virus could trigger disease,” he said. “The paper is also a powerful demonstration about how detailed genetic studies can help us understand human diseases.”

Careful research like this, Coetzee added, “will give us the knowledge we need to better understand the complexity of autoimmune diseases, and importantly point the way to potential prevention of these.”

 

Ask yourself if you have had a lot of strep throats, asthma, bronchitis or mono in your life.  Are you one who has allergies, If so, make an appointment with us, and we can work together to prevent any of these diseases from attacking you.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

P Carrothers

Director of Personalized Health Care

Preventative and Restorative Medicine

312-972-9355 (WELL)

 

HealthWellnessAssociates@gmail.com

 

https://www.facebook.com/HealthAndWellnessAssociates/

Health and Disease, Uncategorized

Healing Bells Palsy

bellspalsey

Healing Bell’s Palsy

Bell’s palsy is a relatively common condition that can show up in a myriad of ways. The face may droop in the eye, nose, or mouth area. It may droop on one side or on both sides. It can last only temporarily or for many years. At times it is very painful; other times there is no feeling at all. Sometimes Bell’s palsy affects more than just the face leaving doctors baffled. Oftentimes, when this happens, the person with the condition will be misdiagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS). Unfortunately, these labels are just names that have been given to a set of symptoms that are still a mystery to medical communities.

 

Bell’s Palsy is a viral issue; in particular, Bell’s palsy is caused by a specific undiscovered strain of the shingles virus. Some medical communities are not yet aware of this truth. If you or a loved one have suffered with or are currently suffering with Bell’s palsy, you now have the answer to what causes this condition and the information I am sharing with you here  can help you take steps toward recovery or preventing further health problems caused by the same virus.

 

The Shingles Virus

In medical research and science, only one variety of the shingles virus is known. If someone contracts a rash that is red and painful and it’s considered a textbook shingles rash, this is very easily diagnosed. However, there are 31 undiscovered varieties of shingles  and sometimes the virus does not manifest itself as a rash at all. Or someone may have a variety that develops a rash but they may also have other mystery symptoms that medical communities aren’t aware are caused by the shingles virus also. In some cases, the virus won’t result in a rash, but will show itself as Bell’s palsy. It’s also possible in a small amount of cases that someone with Bell’s Palsy will also experience a shingles rash, but in the majority of cases no rash will be present.

 

The variety of the shingles virus that causes Bell’s palsy probably will not be discovered for another 30 to 40 years. And if the current trend of medicine and research focusing only on genes continues, then the cause of Bell’s Palsy may never be discovered—ever. This, plus the fact that shingles is still only identified by it’s signature rash to most of the medical communities, is why patients do not hear about shingles when they visit their doctor or health practitioner with Bell’s palsy and many other symptoms. This particular variety of the virus tends to attack the trigeminal nerve or facial nerves, which are the nerves responsible for sensation in the face and motor functions such as biting and chewing, and the droopiness known as Bell’s palsy is not the only thing that the virus may cause.

 

Because the virus doesn’t always hit its mark, it can also affect the gums, teeth, and mouth, and even cause pain in the ear. The virus often hits different parts of nerves or misses the nerves to the face altogether. Many people go to the dentist to find a solution to their mouth pain, which resulted in pulling out teeth, only to find the pain did not improve and the teeth did not need to be removed at all. This is a classic example of how the shingles virus could be to blame. These days, dentists are being a bit more cautious when patients come in with gum, teeth, and mouth pain because they have learned from their past mistakes of disrupting the teeth when it was unnecessary.

 

When this variety of the shingles virus hits the nerves just right, it causes Bell’s palsy. These nerves are connected to the brain and there are so many of them that are very close together. When one nerve is affected, it can affect the ones neighboring it causing additional symptoms that can even resemble a stroke.

 

Healing from Bell’s Palsy

Below are some steps you can take not only to recover from Bell’s palsy, but also to prevent it from happening in the first place. Sometimes if you have Bell’s palsy once, it may come again because the virus in still active in a person’s system. It’s helpful to take these steps even if you aren’t experiencing Bell’s Palsy right now for this reason.

 

In addition, the shingles virus that causes Bell’s Palsy can cause many other symptoms and conditions if the virus is left unaddressed so if you are a loved one have had Bell’s Palsy or any of the symptoms and conditions listed below, it would be helpful to make the adjustments to your diet and supplements that I share in this article. Other symptoms shingles can cause include different kinds of rashes, neurological symptoms like twitching, tingling, burning, spasms, chronic migraines, and headaches, frozen shoulder, diabetic nerve pain, colitis, vaginal burning, TMJ, joint pain, muscle pain, neck pain, sciatic pain, sharp nerve pain, burning nerve pain, heart palpitations, and more. Some medical communities are completely unaware that these symptoms are a result of one or more of the many varieties of the shingles virus.

 

To heal from shingles, there are certain foods that need to be avoided along with certain foods and supplements that help to inhibit and destroy the virus. Let’s look at some of these now.

 

FOODS TO AVOID

Eggs are one of the most important foods to avoid because they are fuel for viruses. When you eat eggs, you are giving the shingles virus fuel to continue proliferating. Medical research is not yet aware that viruses eat, so you might hear health practitioners claim that viruses do not eat anything at all. This is a misconception and another classic medical blunder. Many trendy doctor diets of today tell you to avoid a potato, which is actually helpful for killing a shingles virus. Meanwhile they will recommend eating lots of eggs, which will actually feed the virus along with many other viruses responsible for so many different illnesses and symptoms. The truth is that eggs are the number one food that viruses feed on. If you want to heal Bell’s palsy, it would be helpful to stay away from eggs altogether.

 

Dairy and pork are other foods to stay away from, mainly because of their high fat content. I know high fat diets are popular these days, but this is detrimental to anyone with Bell’s palsy. When your diet is too fatty, the blood thickens and does not allow oxygen to get to the nerves. A fatty diet also inhibits the immune system from doing its job to fight the virus that’s attacking the nerves. It’s helpful to lower your fat intake whether you eat a plant based diet or you include animal foods daily. If you eat a vegan diet, reducing the amount of oils, nuts, seeds, coconut and avocado you eat is important. And if you eat animal protein, try to limit it to once a day or a few times a week and choose the highest quality lean protein sources you can. I know chicken is generally considered to be a lean meat, however chicken is best limited because it’s too high in fat for someone who is trying to fight Bell’s palsy. If you live in a place where eating animal foods is your only option, try to decrease the size of your meat portions and increase your vegetable intake along with bringing in any fruits you can throughout the day. Since fruit is unfairly feared more than ever before today, hearing this may go against a trendy diet belief system that you have adopted. If this is the case, please understand that it’s what will kill off the virus—the cause of Bell’s palsy—and help you to recover your health that matters. When you know the true cause of your symptoms and conditions, your diet should then be adjusted to address it, regardless of what kind of diet belief system you subscribe to.

 

FOODS TO INCLUDE

The good news is you have a lot of secret antiviral weapons in foods that will help you heal from and prevent Bell’s palsy. Fruit is the first food to focus on. Any fruit you eat will help fight the shingles virus because the phytochemicals in fruit are antiviral. Potatoes are another secret weapon to include in your diet. Potatoes are loaded with an extremely potent bioactive L-lysine that inhibits and reduces viral activity. It’s also helpful to include plenty of leafy greens like red leaf lettuce and romaine daily. Eat a cucumber and tomato salad with cilantro, parsley, sage, and rosemary. Yes, tomato. You should not be afraid of a fresh tomato no matter what you hear out there. If you believe that tomatoes are not healthy for you, you’re being misled. Garlic and onion are perfect antivirals to defend you against the shingles virus, as are cumin and turmeric. Drinking fresh pure celery juice is a great way to send healthy mineral salts to your nerve endings. Red clover blossom tea is a great tea to include because of its potent antiviral properties

It’s also important to remove the heavy metals from your body and brain when you have Bell’s palsy. The shingles virus, and all viruses, feed on heavy metals like copper, mercury, aluminum, lead, nickel, steel, and more. By reducing the amount of heavy metals in your body, the shingles virus will have less fuel to proliferate and cause symptoms like Bell’s palsy and others. . These foods are Hawaiian Spirulina, Barley Grass Juice Extract, Atlantic dulse, wild blueberries, and cilantro.

Include these five foods within a 24 hour period of each other to safely and properly remove heavy metals from your body. This is the most effective heavy metal detox protocol that exists. You can contact us for more ways to detox from heavy metals.

While we are discussing heavy metals, I want to share an important truth about mercury fillings. Many people want to get their mercury amalgams removed, but you should know that if you get all your mercury fillings removed at once this could be dangerous because it will release mercury into your bloodstream that wasn’t causing a problem before. The shingles virus will then have a feeding frenzy on mercury and cause more issues. This could result in Bell’s palsy developing. If you are determined to take out your mercury fillings because one is broken or falling apart, be careful to take them out one at a time with many months or more between each removal.

SUPPLEMENTS FOR BELL’S PALSY

There are many supplements that need to be taken to build up your system again Bells palsy and MS.  Contact us so we can go over which ones you should and possibly should not take, based on other medications and conditions you may have.

Moving Forward

Taking these steps that I have described above can be helpful to heal from Bell’s palsy that first occurred years ago, Bell’s palsy that is current or recent, and even to prevent it from happening altogether. It will also help to minimize, prevent or recover from other symptoms caused by shingles. If you feel overwhelmed by making changes to your diet and supplementation, take it one step at a time and keep moving forward. Over time, try to incorporate as many of these antiviral foods as you can. I stand behind you on this healing journey and I am with you every step of the way. Remember that understanding the root cause of Bell’s palsy is half the battle, so you are now that much closer to true healing. We are here to be with you through all these steps.

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

P Carrothers

Dir of Personal Healthcare Plans

Preventative and Restorative Medicine

312-972-9355 (WELL)

 

Healthwellnessassociates@gmail.com

https://www.facebook.com/HealthAndWellnessAssociates/

 

Lifestyle, Uncategorized

Please Do Not Use Lysol Products

lysol

Please Don’t Use Lysol!

You may find that a strange thing for a healthcare professional to say, but at this time of the year I need to remind people that if you have babies, small children, animals, that lysol products will do a lot of harm to babies, children, animals, elderly, people with inflammation/ auto-immune, chemotherapy patients, diseases, lupes, RA, MS, and cancer patients. Even if your cancer is in remission it is advisable not to use Lysol products.

Easiest way to explain it; Lysol is meant to kill live cells. Well a live cell or organism on the floor, or in the air, is the same live cells that we are made up of.

It has become the cause of many chronic respiratory problems in your children, cancer patients, puppies, small dogs, and so on.

So, Lysol kills live cells and anything living!

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived

312-972-WELL

 

Health and Disease, Uncategorized

A Tiny Does of This Can Protect Against Cancer, MS, and Depression

melatonin

A Tiny Dose of This Can Help Protect Against Cancer, MS, and Depression

 

How Melatonin May Benefit Depression, Autoimmune Disorders, and Cancer

 

The hormone melatonin plays many important roles in your health, from helping you sleep better to strengthening your immune system, slowing down brain aging, reducing migraine attacks, protecting bone mass, and preventing cancer.

 

Lack of sun exposure during the day combined with artificial lighting late into the night disrupts your biological clock and hence, your melatonin production, and this disruption can provoke a number of adverse health effects.

 

In fact, melatonin has been the subject of preclinical research on over 100 different disease applications, many of which go hand in hand with your need for sleep.

 

Melatonin for Sleep and Beyond

 

Your master biological clock resides in the suprachiasmatic nucleus of your brain (SCN), which is part of your hypothalamus. Based on signals of light and darkness, your SCN tells your pineal gland when it’s time to secrete melatonin, and when to turn it off.

 

In scientific studies, melatonin supplementation has been shown to help people fall asleep faster and stay asleep, experience less restlessness, and prevent daytime fatigue.

 

Keep in mind that you may only need a very minimal dose. I recommend taking only 0.25 mg or 0.5 mg to start, and adjusting upward from there. Taking higher doses, such as 3 mg, can sometimes make you more wakeful instead of sleepier, so start low and adjust your dose as needed.

 

Melatonin has also been found to reduce the effects of jet lag when traveling across multiple time zones.1 And children suffering with eczema, a condition that oftentimes prevents good sleep, may also get more shut-eye with melatonin supplementation,2 according to recent research.

 

Interestingly, melatonin also helped dampen the severity of the eczema, hinting at its anti-inflammatory effects. However, the benefits of melatonin go far beyond sleep. Three specific areas I’ll address in this article are its role in depression, multiple sclerosis, and cancer.

 

Normalizing Your Circadian System Helps Alleviate Depressive Symptoms

 

Your melatonin level inversely rises and falls with light and darkness, and both your physical and mental health is intricately tied to this rhythm of light and dark. When it’s dark, your melatonin levels increase, which is why you may feel tired when the sun starts to set.

 

Conversely, when you’re exposed to bright artificial lighting at night, including blue light emitted from TVs and electronic screens, you may have trouble falling asleep due to suppressed melatonin levels.

 

Light exposure when you wake up at night can also be problematic as I explain in my video above. However you don’t have to stumble around as red and orange wavelengths will not suppress melatonin production.

 

You can use a red light to guide you to the bathroom. If you have a clock in your bedroom make sure it has a red LED display. Blue would be the worst as it is the one that shuts down melatonin most effectively.

 

Winter Blues SAD

 

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD, also called “the winter blues”) is associated with lack of sun exposure, and scientists generally recommend full-spectrum light therapy over SSRIs like Prozac or Zoloft for this condition.

 

Interestingly, recent research suggests light therapy may be preferable even for major depression, outperforming Prozac in those with moderate to severe depression. One of the reasons it works so well likely has to do with the fact that bright light helps reset your biological clock, or circadian rhythm.

 

Melatonin supplementation can help do this to a certain extent as well, but not as effectively as exposure to bright light during daytime. Light may also work in a way similar to antidepressants by regulating neurotransmitter function.

 

Light Therapy — More Effective Than Prozac

 

The study3,4,5,6,7 in question set out to compare the effectiveness of light therapy alone and in conjunction with the antidepressant fluoxetine (Prozac).

 

The eight-week long trial included 122 adults between the ages of 19 and 60, who were diagnosed with moderate to severe depression. The participants were divided into four groups, receiving:

 

Light therapy (30 minutes per day upon waking using a 10,000 lux Carex brand day-light device, classic model) plus a placebo pill

Prozac (20 mg/day) plus a deactivated ion generator serving as a placebo light device

Light therapy plus Prozac

Placebo light device plus placebo pill (control group)

In conclusion, the study found that the combination of light therapy and Prozac was the most effective — but light therapy-only came in close second, followed by placebo.

 

That’s right, the drug treatment was the least effective of all, and LESS effective than placebo! At the end of the study, remission was achieved by:

 

Just over 19 percent in the Prozac only group

30 percent in the placebo group

Nearly 44 percent in the light therapy only group

Nearly 59 percent in the active combination group

How Melatonin May Aid in the Treatment of Multiple Sclerosis

 

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disorder that, like SAD, has been linked to vitamin D deficiency from lack of sun exposure. Interestingly, recent research suggests that a drop in autumn and winter relapses may be linked to peak melatonin levels, which occurs during these darker months.

 

Conversely, spikes in relapses occurring during spring and summer — which tend to be less common but do occur — may be related to decreased melatonin levels. The research,8 led by neuroscientist Mauricio Farez at the Dr. Raúl Carrea Institute for Neurological Research, looked at 139 MS patients living in Buenos Aires.

 

Thirty-two percent of them experienced a reduction in relapses during fall and winter, compared to spring and summer. As reported by Scientific American:9

 

“Past research has shown that melatonin can have a protective effect against MS and that shift work, which disturbs melatonin production, can increase the risk of developing the disease. According to the authors, this research is one of the first to bring together epidemiological evidence with results from both human cells and animal models …

 

[And it] may help to resolve a ‘seasonal paradox’ — MS flare-ups should decrease during warmer, brighter months when people receive more exposure to sunlight and thus produce more vitamin D, which also has anti-inflammatory properties. But some studies, including this one, show that relapses increase in the spring and summer pointing to the possibility that other environmental factors, such as melatonin levels, are involved.”

 

To test their hypothesis, mice with autoimmune encephalomyelitis (the animal model of MS) received daily injections of melatonin. As a result, clinical symptoms were reduced, and harmful T cells, which are pro-inflammatory, were reduced, whereas regulatory T cells were increased. Similar effects were shown in petri dish experiments. As noted in the featured article:

 

“Melatonin regulates pathways central to the immune response, so these results may pertain to other autoimmune diseases, particularly where seasonal flare-ups occur, such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis …”

 

Melatonin’s Role in Fighting Cancer

 

Cancer is another area where melatonin plays a major role. The evidence suggests it may be an important adjunct to cancer treatment,10 as it also helps protect against the toxic effects of radiation therapy. Cells throughout your body — even cancer cells — have melatonin receptors, and melatonin is in and of itself cytotoxic, meaning can induce tumor cell death (apoptosis). It also:11

 

Boosts production of immune-optimizing substances such as interleukin-2, which helps identify and attack mutated cells that lead to malignant cancer

Inhibits development of new tumor blood vessels (tumor angiogenesis), which slows the spread of the cancer

Retards cancer progression by activating the cytokine system, which helps inhibit tumor growth, and by stimulating the cytotoxic activity of macrophages and monocytes

By its antioxidant action it also limits oxidative damage to DNA

Inhibits tumor growth by counteracting estrogen. (At night, when melatonin production peaks, cell division slows. And when melatonin latches onto a breast cancer cell, it has been found to counteract estrogen’s tendency to stimulate cell growth)

Melatonin has a calming effect on other reproductive hormones besides estrogen as well, which may explain why it seems to protect most effectively against sex hormone-driven cancers, including ovarian, endometrial, prostate, testicular and breast cancers12 — the latter of which has received the greatest amount of scientific attention. Some of the studies on melatonin for breast cancer include the following:

 

The journal Epidemiology13 reported increased breast cancer risk among women who work predominantly night shifts

Women who live in neighborhoods with large amounts of nighttime illumination are more likely to get breast cancer than those who live in areas where nocturnal darkness prevails, according to an Israeli study14

From participants in the Nurses’ Health Study,15 it was found that nurses who work nights had 36 percent higher rates of breast cancer

Blind women, whose eyes cannot detect light and therefore have robust production of melatonin, have lower-than-average breast cancer rates16

When the body of epidemiological studies are considered in their totality, women who work night shift are found to have breast cancer rates 60 percent above normal, even when other factors, such as differences in diet, are accounted for17

Melatonin May Improve Outcomes for Lung Cancer Patients

 

Other cancers may also benefit. In 2004, the Life Extension Foundation collaborated with Cancer Treatment Centers of America on the first clinical trial evaluating melatonin’s effect in patients with lung cancer.

 

The results,18 which were published in conjunction with the 2014 American Society of Clinical Oncology Meeting, found a tumor response in just over 29 percent of those receiving melatonin at night, compared to just under 8 percent of those receiving it in the morning, and 10.5 percent of placebo recipients. As reported by Life Extension Magazine:19

 

“European clinical studies indicate that in patients with metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer, five-year survival and overall tumor regression rates were higher in patients concomitantly treated with melatonin than in those treated with chemotherapy alone. While no patient treated with chemotherapy survived after two years, five-year survival was achieved in 3 of 49 patients treated with chemotherapy and melatonin.

 

The researchers hope that similarly promising results could eventually convince mainstream medical practitioners to administer melatonin in combination with standard cancer treatment regimens to patients in earlier stages of cancer treatment.”

 

The Importance of Light and Dark for the Synchronization of Your Body Clocks

 

Melatonin production is stimulated by darkness and suppressed by light, which is why your levels should be highest just prior to bedtime. This perfectly orchestrated system allows you to fall asleep when the sun sets and awaken refreshed with the sunrise, while also providing potential anti-aging and disease-fighting benefits.

 

If you’re having trouble sleeping, which is a signal that your melatonin production is off, I suggest making sure you’re sleeping in total darkness and to turn lights down at least an hour or so before bedtime. Also, avoid watching TV and using computers and other electronic gadgets at least an hour prior to bed.

 

All of these devices emit blue light, which will decrease your melatonin if you work past dark, so ideally you’d want to turn these items off once the sun goes down. If you have to use these devices you can wear yellow glasses that filter the blue wavelengths out and/or use free software like f.lux.

 

To light rooms at night, use “low blue” light bulbs that emit an amber light instead of the blue that suppresses melatonin production. An equally important factor is the quality of light you’re exposed to during the day. Without sufficient sunlight during the day, your circadian clock may fall out of sync.

 

Most incandescent and fluorescent lights emit very poor-quality light. What your body needs for optimal functioning is the full-spectrum light you get outdoors, but most of us do not spend much time outside to take advantage of this healthy light.

 

Using full-spectrum light bulbs in your home and office can help ameliorate this lack of high-quality sunlight during the day, but cannot fully replace it. So do make an effort to go outside for at least 30 to 60 minutes each day during the brightest portion of the day, i.e. right around noon. This will help “set” your circadian clock and help you sleep better.

 

For Optimal Health, Make Sure You Sleep Well

 

Remember, when your circadian rhythms are disrupted, your body produces less melatonin, which means it has less ability to fight cancer, and less protection against free radicals that may accelerate aging and disease. So if you’re having even slight trouble sleeping, I suggest you review my “33 Secrets to a Good Night’s Sleep” for more guidance on how to improve your sleep-wake cycle.

 

If you’ve made the necessary changes to your sleep routine and find you’re still having trouble sleeping, a high-quality melatonin supplement may be helpful.

 

The amount of melatonin you create and release every night varies depending on your age. Children usually have much higher levels of melatonin than adults, and as you grow older your levels typically continue to decrease. This is why some older adults may benefit from extra melatonin.

 

The same goes for those who perform night shift work, travel often and experience jet lag, or otherwise suffer from occasional sleeplessness due to stress or other reasons. Start with a dose of about 0.25 to 0.5 mg, and increase it as necessary from there. If you start feeling more alert, you’ve likely taken too much and need to lower your dose.

 

Health and Wellness Associates

Archived : JM

312-972-WELL

 

Rx to Wellness

Vitamin D can prevent MS

vitamin

Supplementation with vitamin D might decrease the severity and slow the progression of multiple sclerosis (MS), according to a study conducted by researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health and Bayer HealthCare, and published in the journal JAMA Neurology. The study was funded by the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. MS is a degenerative central nervous system disorder, believed to result from malfunction of the immune system. There is no cure for the disease, which can lead to problems with everything from muscle strength and control to balance, vision and even cognitive function. Approximately 2.5 million people worldwide suffer from MS. Previous studies have linked the risk of developing autoimmune disorders generally and MS specifically with low levels of vitamin D. In addition, studies of long-term MS patients have shown a correlation between lower vitamin D levels and more severe disease symptoms. Such studies have been unable to determine, however, whether low vitamin D levels cause more severe disease symptoms, or vice versa.

A miracle treatment?

For the new study, researchers examined data from 465 MS patients who had enrolled in the BENEFIT (Betaseron in Newly Emerging Multiple Sclerosis for Initial Treatment) trial between 2002 and 2003, and who lived in Canada, Israel or one of 18 European countries. The BENEFIT trial was designed to examine how the effectiveness of interferon beta-1b treatment for MS changed depending on when the drug was administered, but researchers also collected data on vitamin D levels at the beginning of the study and every two years thereafter. The researchers found that, over the course of five years, early-stage MS patients with adequate vitamin D levels at the time of diagnosis had a 57 percent lower rate of new brain lesions, a 57 percent lower relapse rate and a 25 percent lower annual increase in lesion volume than patients with lower vitamin D levels. Such patients also had significantly less brain volume loss, a major predictor of disability. The findings suggest that vitamin D actively protects the brain from the symptoms and progression of MS, and that it also makes the particular drug studied even more effective. “The benefits of vitamin D appeared to be additive to those of interferon beta-1b, a drug that is very effective in reducing MS activity,” lead author Alberto Ascherio said. “The findings of our study indicate that identifying and correcting vitamin D insufficiency should become part of the standard of care for newly diagnosed MS patients.”

Mounting evidence

The study is only the latest to strengthen the links between vitamin D and improved MS outcomes. For example, a 2012 study found that that, among people with relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), “always” wearing sunscreen was associated with a 1.8 times higher disability rate than “sometimes” or “never” wearing sunscreen. Lifetime sun sensitivity (defined as an inability to spend more than 30 minutes in the sun without burning) was also associated with a 1.8 times higher disability rates, while spending at least as much time in the sun each day as the average non-MS patient was associated with a 30 percent lower disability rate. Another study, published in Acta Neurologica Scandinavica in 2013, found that increased exposure to sunlight decreased rates of depression and fatigue among MS patients. Vitamin D deficiency remains widespread, particularly in regions farther from the equator. However, your body can make all the vitamin D you need from a short amount of unprotected sun exposure to the face and hands each day — just 15 to 30 minutes for light-skinned people, and more for those with darker skin. Sources for this article include: http://www.hsph.harvard.edu
Do you know anyone who has MS, or does it run in your family?  Share this article with them, or have them contact us for a consultation.

Health and Wellness Associates

312-972-WELL   9355

Archived Article