Sunday, April 15, 2012


The gallbladder is the end of the detoxification road that begins in the liver. Bile is the fluid into which the liver excretes its toxins. (The other routes of elimination are the sweat glands and the kidneys.) After bile is produced in the liver, it runs into the gallbladder and eventually into the intestinal tract. We have found that in many cases people with liver problems also have gallbladder problems, and vice versa.

Bile is made in the liver from cholesterol, bilirubin, and lecithin, and is then secreted into the gallbladder. While in the gallbladder, bile is concentrated by a reabsorption of the liquids back into the circulatory system. A proper ratio of bile components is necessary for it to remain in solution. Abnormal ratios promote the formation of cholesterol crystals or stones in the gallbladder. During a meal, bile is secreted by the gallbladder into the intestines to promote the digestion and breakdown of oils and fats. After the intestines absorb them, these bile-digested fats are used in the body to build cells, hormones, and prostaglandins (a group of chemicals that act like hormones).

When constipation occurs, bacteria in the intestines split the toxins that are bound up in the bile, in turn causing reabsorption of these already detoxified poisons. A diet high in vegetables will prevent constipation. Beta-glucuronidase is an intestinal bacterial enzyme that releases compounds for reabsorption. To prevent this reabsorption of toxins, an adequate supply of calcium d-glucarate, a natural ingredient in vegetables that inhibits beta-glucuronidase activity, is necessary. Charcoal will also bind up the bile and prevent toxins from being reabsorbed into the bloodstream.

Gallstones, a common complaint in North America, can easily disrupt the flow of bile. They are found in sixteen to twenty million Americans and are twice as common for women as men. Usually the stones are a mixture of cholesterol, calcium, bilirubin, and lecithin. Occasionally, however, the gallbladder also forms a stone consisting mainly of calcium with a little bit of cholesterol. My recommendations for gallstones, observe the following instructions:

1. Take lecithin daily. Cholesterol stones are caused when your liver excretes more cholesterol into the gallbladder than it does lecithin and bile acids. The cholesterol tends to “supersaturate” and form stones. A daily supplement of 500 mg of lecithin with meals keeps the bile flowing smoothly.

2. Limit dietary sugar. Sugar intake correlates with gallstone formation, suggesting that sugar stimulates cholesterol synthesis.

3. Take 5 g of soluble fiber (pectin in fruits, beans, or oat bran) daily with meals to absorb the bile in the gut.

4. Eat a healthy-fat diet to optimize bile production.

5. Eat small meals to ensure proper digestive capacity.

6. Avoid food allergens, which are notorious for provoking acute attacks of gallbladder inflammation. Eggs are considered the worst offender.

7. Take 500 mg of bile acids with every meal; this is usually 50 percent effective in reducing the size of the cholesterol variety of gallstones.

8. Take supplements of the amino acids methionine and taurine. Because women’s bodies make less taurine than men’s, this might be the clue to their twofold increased risk for gallstones. The dose is 1 g of each amino acid, between meals, twice daily.

9. Take dandelion root (Taraxacum officinalis) extract. It’s a superb cholegogue (releases stored bile), gentle in action, and safe to use. The dose of the solid extract is 1 teaspoon, 3 times a day. The solid extract is hard to find in the store, but the next best thing is to use the powdered root. The dose is 8 g as a tea, 3 times a day.


Your body doesn’t like to keep any molecules around for a long time. Even “good” molecules, such as hormones, are constantly being disassembled and reconstructed to prepare them to be recycled or eliminated. Thanks to detoxification enzymes, the liver is able to break up most molecules, even toxic and dangerous ones. Enzymes are molecules that act as catalysts in the transformation process. There are thousands of different enzymes, each with a unique role.

Think of this detoxification process as a two-phase wash cycle. Enzymes are like the soap that liberates grease into little droplets, removing impurities that the water can’t remove on its own. In the first part of the wash cycle (Phase 1), enzymes break toxins down into intermediate forms. Some toxins are ready for elimination at this stage, but others require a second wash cycle. In Phase 2, these intermediate compounds are routed along one of six chemically driven detoxification pathways, where they are further broken down, and then bound to specific types of protein molecules which act as “escorts” to guide them out of the body, allowing them to exit through the kidneys (in the form of urine) or the bile (in the form of feces). This process is called conjugation. Of the six pathways, three warrant special mention.

One of the most important systems in Phase 2 is the glutathione conjugation pathway, which utilizes glutathione for the detoxification of deadly industrial toxins such as PCBs, and the breakdown of carcinogens. Its activity accounts for up to 60 percent of the toxins excreted in the bile. Glutathione also circulates through the bloodstream combating free radicals. No other conjugating substance is as versatile as glutathione and the body’s supply of it, most of which is produced by the liver, is easily depleted. Exposure to high levels of toxins exhausts reserves of glutathione, possibly increasing susceptibility to cancer. Chronic disease, HIV, and cirrhosis use up reserves of glutathione. Excessive exercise, which increases oxidative stress and free radical production, and alcohol consumption, which blocks glutathione production, also deplete glutathione in the blood.

The weakest pathway in most people, from a dietary standpoint, is sulfation, the one responsible for the transformation of neurotransmitters, steroid hormones, drugs, industrial chemicals, phenolics (compounds derived from benzene, commonly used in plastics, disinfectants, and pharmaceuticals), and especially toxins from intestinal bacteria and the environment. Intake of too little dietary sulfur, a molecule that must come from our diets, is a cause of ineffective detoxification. If your exposure to substances that need to be detoxified via the sulfation pathway is high, but your sulfate reserves are low due to an inadequate diet, you will not be able to break down these toxins.

Studies have established a strong association between the function of the sulfation pathway and a variety of illnesses including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, motor neuron disease, autism, primary biliary cirrhosis, rheumatoid arthritis, food sensitivity, and multiple chemical sensitivity. A comprehensive detoxification profile test identifies alterations in this pathway.

The body manufactures five different types of amino acids that form a third detoxification pathway: glycine, taurine, glutamine, arginine, and ornithine. Of these, glycine is the most important for the neutralization of toxins. In some cases, the body cannot make enough glycine to keep up with its own detoxification needs. Though not considered an essential amino acid because the body can make it, glycine production depends on an adequate intake of dietary protein. Individuals who eat a protein-deficient diet have trouble detoxifying environmental pollutants.

Glycine supplies can be depleted by lifestyle stresses. Benzoates for example, found in soft drinks, bind with glycine and rob the body’s store of it. One study found that people who consumed a large number of soft drinks had problems breaking down toluene, a common industrial organic solvent. Aspirin also slows down this detoxification pathway because it competes for available glycine in the liver. When the diet is supplemented with glycine, as well as the other nonessential amino acids, there is a noticeable improvement in the detoxification capabilities of many people.

Problems in Phase 1 and Phase 2 Detoxification

When the liver is “sluggish,” Phase 1 of the detoxification cycle may not be processing toxins at a normal and necessary speed. This causes toxins to accumulate in the bloodstream. If the hormone estrogen, for example, is not dismantled during Phase 1, the buildup can reach potentially harmful levels. Premenstrual tension can be an expression of this. Many factors can cause Phase 1 to become sluggish. As we age, our detoxification processes slow. Use of medications such as anti-ulcer drugs (cimetidine) and oral contraceptives; exposure to cadmium, lead, and mercury; and consumption of large amounts of sugar and hydrogenated fats hinder Phase 1 detoxification.

Substances that slow down Phase 1 detoxification, setting the stage for a toxic buildup, are called Phase 1 inhibitors. They affect the DNA of the liver cells, causing less detoxification enzymes to be produced. In addition to those mentioned previously, Phase 1 inhibitors include:



Capsicum (found in hot peppers)


Drugs containing benzodiazepenes and antidepressants


Ketoconazole (used in antifungal medications)

Toxins from bacteria in the intestines

A different type of detoxification problem develops if Phase 1 breaks down toxins at so fast a rate that Phase 2 cannot keep up. In this situation, the toxic intermediates produced during Phase 1 waiting to be washed out in Phase 2 flood the system. Many of these intermediate compounds—stuck in between Phase 1 and Phase 2—are more dangerous than the original toxin. This bottleneck can become a biochemical nightmare, damaging the liver, brain, and immune system.

Some of the substances that accelerate the breakdown of toxins in the liver by increasing the production of Phase 1 enzymes, without a concurrent increase in Phase 2 enzymes, are known carcinogens—pesticides, paint fumes, and cigarette smoke. Others are well known for their detrimental effects, such as alcohol and steroids. Even some otherwise harmless substances such as limonene from lemons, increase Phase 1 detoxification. But unlike cigarette smoke, limonene does not create dangerous intermediate molecules. As you read the following list, keep in mind that it is not strictly a list of “bad” things, but of those that increase the rate of Phase 1 detoxification, and that this becomes a problem only when Phase 2 can’t keep up.



Sulfonamide medications

Foods in the cabbage family

Charbroiled meats

High-protein diets

Citrus fruits

Vitamin B1

Vitamin B3

Vitamin C

Environmental toxins (exhaust fumes, paint fumes, dioxin, pesticides)

Cigarette smoke


Endotoxins from intestinal bacteria in the bloodstream

Exposure to a toxin, when coupled with exposure to another substance that speeds up Phase 1, is especially dangerous. The combination of alcohol and acetaminophen provides a good example. It’s not uncommon to drink heavily, and later take acetaminophen for the headache that follows. The intermediate compound (from acetaminophen) is an extremely toxic substance called n-acetyl-p-benzoquinoneimine (NAPQI). Under normal conditions, NAPQI is removed quickly during Phase 2, but alcohol intake forces more NAPQI into the liver than Phase 2 can handle.

Research has shown that specific foods and nutrients not only have a beneficial effect on detoxification capability, but can also provide a safe and viable approach to treating a variety of immune disorders and toxicity syndromes.

If two or more detoxification accelerants are combined, they can interact, with serious consequences. An individual on a prescription medication who smokes, for example, actually needs higher dosages of the medication because smoking causes the medication to be broken down faster than it normally would be during Phase 1. If Phase 2 can’t handle the extra burden, a detoxification bottleneck results. We predict that in the future, medical specialists will check detoxification capabilities in order to give more accurate drug prescriptions.

Problems in Phase 1 and Phase 2 liver detoxification are so prevalent, and have such a major impact on health that we believe it’s a good idea for everyone to have liver detoxification tests as part of a standard medical workup. This lab test can identify problems localized in the different detoxification pathways. If you suffer from chronic liver and gallbladder problems, you’re probably a candidate for this test. Abnormal results, of course, will require ruling out a liver disease before going ahead with detoxification therapy. Assessing detoxification function makes it possible to diagnose a problem before symptoms actually appear. Tests that measure Phase 1 and Phase 2 enzymes take much of the guesswork out of estimating the severity of liver detoxification dysfunction, and can to some extent indicate whether a person is at special risk for cancer, neurological disease, chemical and drug sensitivity, and immune problems.

Diet and Detoxification: Feeding Phase 1 and 2

You can take steps to keep your liver detoxification system running smoothly. Diet has a strong effect on detoxification enzymes, and foods can help “regulate” or balance Phase 1 and 2 activity. Eating foods that support the liver can reduce your susceptibility to damage from toxins and to conditions such as multiple chemical sensitivity syndrome, chronic fatigue syndrome, and cancer. Research has shown that specific foods and nutrients not only have a beneficial effect on detoxification capability, but can also provide a safe and viable approach to treating a variety of immune disorders and toxicity syndromes.

Essential fatty acids are vital for Phase 1 detoxification, and the standard American diet does not provide an adequate supply of these vital nutrients. Essential fatty acid intake in the form of cold-water fish and flaxseed oils have a demonstrated ability to heighten detoxification. Other sources of essential fatty acids include edible oils, such as those made from sunflower seeds, walnuts, and sesame seeds; wheat germ; and supplements of black current seed, borage, or evening primrose oil.

Eating fresh fruits and vegetables daily is a good way to continually replenish your body’s store of glutathione, necessary for one of Phase 2 pathways. High-quality protein nourishes both the amino acid and the sulfation pathways. Vegetable sources of sulfur for the sulfation pathways include radishes, turnips, onions, celery, horseradish, string beans, watercress, kale, and soybeans. Eggs, fish, and meat are also excellent sulfur sources.

Cabbage, brussels sprouts, broccoli, citrus fruits, and lemon peel oils support Phase 2 activity. Studies have shown dramatic results from consuming broccoli sprout extract, which inhibits the activity of Phase 1 enzymes and, simultaneously enhances the Phase 2 glutathione pathway. Broccoli sprout extracts are especially beneficial for people who have frequent or high-level exposure to pesticides, exhaust fumes, paint fumes, cigarette smoke, or alcohol. Anyone who is exposed to known carcinogens will benefit from broccoli sprout extract.

Foods to Support Liver Detoxification

Cabbage family

Cold-water fish

Flaxseed oil

Fruits (fresh)


Nuts and seeds


Safflower oil

Sesame seed oil

Sunflower seed oil

Vegetables (fresh)

Walnut oil

Wheat germ and wheat germ oil

Nutritional Supplements to Support Liver Detoxification


Black currant seed oil

Borage oil


Coenzyme Q10


Evening primrose oil

Folic acid









Silymarin (milk thistle)

Trace minerals

Vitamin A

Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine)

Vitamin B12

Vitamin C (ascorbic acid)

Vitamin D

Vitamin E

Vitamin K



Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an important food in the brain development of children. DHA is found primarily in fish and breast milk. Not only is DHA required for nerve myelination, but DHA is also involved in synaptic function and signaling. This means that DHA is used in the construction and communication of brain cells. Scientific studies have shown that supplemental DHA causes improvement in learning ability, problem solving and even cognitive ability. Mother's milk contains DHA, whereas all infant formulas in the U.S. contain alpha-linolenic acid as the only omega-3 fatty acid. One study showed that full-term breastfed infants had scores 2.66 points higher cognitive abilities than those fed with formula. The only plant source of DHA is microalgae supplements. It is especially important for pregnant women to get extra DHA to feed the developing nervous system of their child. I feel that behavior and learning disorders like ADHD could be due to inadequate DHA intake during pregnancy and lactation. Pregnant and lactating women, should take at least 300 mg/d of DHA.


When your body is in pain and is not healing, you have to have a strategy for rehabilitating non-healing tissues like joints and muscles. The following strategies are excellent tools for feeding tissues and helping them regain normal function. The biggest mistake I see patients make in trying to heal chronic pain is that they will pick only one of the following strategies when all are required.

Replace Nutrients: specific nutrients like omega 3 fatty acids decreased stiffness and pain with no side effects. Minerals, bioflavonoids, antioxidants and amino acids are all necessary fro healthy muscle function.

Enhance Digestion: optimum intestinal health can correct unhealthy bacteria which cause joint inflammation and chronic muscle pain. Bacterial liposaccharides which are toxins from the bowel bacteria have been shown to disturb the maintenance of healthy joints. Therapy programs which correct intestinal permeability, food intolerence, bacterial imbalance, immune globulin deficiency, and diminished enzymes in digestion help to provide healthy, clean blood to damaged muscles and tendons.

Diminish Inflammation: bioflavonoids, amino acids and phytochemicals diminish chemical cascades of pain chemicals and balance the body chemistry. Natural proteolytic enzymes, herbal prostaglandin, leukotriene, and thromboxane blocking agents, and botanical circulation enhancers “move blood” and resolve pain and inflammation.

Optimize Motion: all forms of physical therapies must enhance motion of joints, soft tissue, and fluids in the body (blood, lymph, cerebrospinal fluid). The use of direct manipulation, fascial release, soft tissue “sculpting”, acupuncture, bee venom therapy, neural therapy, ultrasound, and hydrotherapy is applied according to the type of injury and stage of inflammation.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Co Q10's Answer To Our Energy Crisis

The production of energy in the trillions of cells of the body is the greatest mystery of life. As living organisms, we combine oxygen from our lungs and glucose from our food in the power generator called the "mitochondria" in our cells to produce adenosine triphosphate or ATP. ATP is the gasoline that is used to drive the numerous chemical reactions inside each cell, it provides the energy needed to drive cellular machinery.

Our body requires many nutrients or co-factors to produce energy in the mitochondria. Magnesium, cysteine, iron, niacin, manganese, thiamin, riboflavin and carnitine are all involved in energy production. Another one of these co-factors is co-enzyme Q10 (CoQ10). CoQ10 is involved in the transport of electrons in the mitochondria. We produce it naturally and it is so common one of its names is ubiquinone, the "ubiquitous quinone". This means that without CoQ10, we would be unable to manufacture energy. Since CoQ10 is involved in energy production, you find the highest levels of it in tissues like the heart muscle, which have massive energy production needs. Even though CoQ10 is a compound naturally found in our body, there are many situations where extra supplemental dosing is indicated. Not only can it make you feel better, CoQ10 has been show to reverse very serious disease and pathology. CoQ10 remains one of the unique and special supplements that many patients rely on for which there is no pharmaceutical drug replacement.


A deficiency of CoQ10 is not uncommon. It may result from nutritional deficiencies, genetic or drug induced defects in synthesis or utilization. Clinically, CoQ10 can be needed in certain conditions resulting from illnesses such as congestive heart failure (CHF). CoQ10 levels naturally decline with advancing age so every one over the age of seventy could benefit from supplementation. After all, who couldn’t use a little more energy as they get older? CoQ10 deficiency is typically found in tissue that are the most metabolically active, like heart muscle and gum tissue. Since CoQ10 is involved in energy production, these tissues will show the earliest signs of deficiency.

The greatest risk group for CoQ10 deficiency are patients taking statin drugs. Since these drugs are the largest selling drug on the planet by volume and dollar, there is a significant numbers of our global population that could benefit from 50 mg/day of CoQ10. Statin drugs (lovastatin and pravastatin) deplete CoQ10 inside the heart muscle, making it less efficient. These drugs inhibit an enzyme which is required for the synthesis of both cholesterol and CoQ10. Statin drugs slowly poison an active site of energy production. Beta blockers propranolol and metaprolol inhibit CoQ10-dependent enzymes. Phenothiazines and tricyclic antidepressants have also been shown to inhibit CoQ10-dependent enzymes.

Clinical Application

The most reliable clinical application in terms of results for CoQ10 is in cardiovascular conditions. I have seen many positive results from just taking this simple nutrient. Even though our body can make it, we can easily end up with a “functional” deficiency as a result of aging and poor health.

Cardiovascular Disease: CoQ10 is especially indicated for the enhancement of heart muscle function in any form of cardiovascular disease. It is safe to dose CoQ10 in almost any condition, even if the patient is on heart medications and usually it provides some clinical benefit. The average health consumer can feel confident that their purchase of CoQ10 will give them a good value, especially since it is such an expensive supplement . Since CoQ10 enhances energy production in the heart muscle cells, this will improve contractility of the cardiac muscle, lower blood pressure, and improve heart muscle performance, Specific cardiac problems which may benefit from CoQ10 include:

  • Angina (Kamikawa, T, et al.)
  • Arrhythmias (Fujioka, T, et al.)
  • Cardiomyopathy (Langsjoen, PH, et al.)
  • Congestive heart failure (Mortensen, SA, et al.; Morisco, C, et al.)
  • Protection during cardiac surgery (Tanaka, J, et al.)
  • Mitral valve prolapse (Oda, T, Hamamoto, K.)

Remarkably, CoQ10 lowers blood pressure in ways that are not clearly understood. In one study, CoQ10 was able to lower blood pressure in patients who did not have CoQ10 deficiency. (Digiesi, V, et al.; Langsjoen, P, et al). If you are trying to lower your blood pressure, take it for 4-12 weeks to evaluate the benefits. Remember, you can take CoQ10, while you stay on your blood pressure medications without any worry of side effects.

Another area of cardiovascular benefit for CoQ10 is in protecting against the heart muscle toxicity of the chemotherapy drug adriamycin. (Domae, N, et al.; Karlsson, J, et al; Cortes, EP, et al) In a previous Alive article I wrote about treating a patient with Hodgkins Lymphoma using CoQ10 to protect his heart and immune system from the chemotherapy. If you or a family member have to take adriamycin chemotherapy, you should take CoQ10, regardless of your oncologist or medical doctor’s opinion.

Diabetes mellitus: The electron-transport chain is integrally involved in carbohydrate metabolism. It is well known that high blood sugar damages energy production in the mitochondria and is a central them of biological aging. This is one of the reasons fasting can be so beneficial in slowing down the aging process. CoQ10 helps to lower blood sugar. CoQ7 (almost identical to CoQ10 and considered to be nutritionally equivalent) at a daily dose of 120 mg for 2-18 weeks reduced fasting blood sugar by at least 30% in 31% of patients. (Shigeta, Y, et al. )

Periodontal disease: I have seen good results with treating periuodontal disease using CoQ10. Even the dental hygenists notice a difference when they are scaling teeth on patients who start taking it. Many clinical trials have demonstrated a beneficial effect of CoQ10. Gingival biopsies yield subnormal tissue levels of CoQ10 in patients with periodontal disease. (Nakamura, R, et al.; Hansen, IL, et al.; Littarru, GP, et al.; ) One study also showed that CoQ10 supplementation increases gum healing after periodontal surgery. (Wilkinson, EG, et al.)

Immune Function: CoQ10 enhances the strength of the immune system to battle viruses and bacteria. (Mayer, P, et al; Saiki I. et al; Bliznakov E, et al.) Patients who notice that their immune system getting weaker as they age, more colds and flus, will benefit from a daily supplement of CoQ10. One study showed that immune suppression was reversed with a daily dose of 60 mg/day. (Folkers, K, Shizukkuishi, S, et al.) The patients showed an increase in production of antibodies conferring better immune response. AIDS patients have lower CoQ10 levels in their blood and when supplemented with 200 mg/day, they had beneficial changes in their in their T cell ratios and none of the patients went on to develop infections associated with their condition. (Folkers, K, Langsjoen, P, Nara, Y,. et al.).

Muscular Dystrophy: CoQ10 deficiency is found in muscle, both cardiac and skeletal, of animals and humans with muscular dystrophy (MD). Patients with MD who were supplemented with 100 mg of CoQ10/day had significant benefit in cardiac output as well as increased physical well being.( Folkers, K, et al.)

Dosage Of CoQ10

Most people start with a dosage of 30 mg though some conditions, if life threatening like breast cancer or congestive heart failure, will require doses of up to 400 mg/day. It is very pricy stuff so finding the right dose is critical. CoQ10 is well absorbed by oral supplementation as evidenced by significant increases in serum CoQ10 levels after supplementation. (Gaby, AR.). There also is some evidence that CoQ10 in oil suspension has the highest bioavailability, it is also difficult to get and more expensive. (Kaikkonen J, et al. ) Side effects are minimal, but there are occasional reports of nausea, poor appetite, or skin eruptions.

Medical References-

Bliznakov E, Casey A, Premuzic E. Coenzymes Q: stimulants of the phagocytic activity in rats and immune response in mice. Experientia 1 970;26:953-954.

Cortes, EP, Gupta, M, Chou, C, Amin, VC, Folkers, K. Adriamycin cardiotoxicity: early detection by systolic time interval and possible prevention by coenzyme Q10. Cancer Treat Rep 1978:62:887-891.

Domae, N, Sawada, H, Matsuyama, E, Konishi T, Uchino, H. Cardiomyopathy and other chronic toxic effects induced in rabbits by doxombicin and possible prevention by coenzyme Q10. Cancer Treat Rep 1981:65:79-91

Folkers, K, Langsjoen, P, Nara, Y, et al. Biochemical deficiencies of coenzyme QIO in HIV infection and exploratory treatment. Biochem Biophys Res Commun 1988;153:888-896.

Folkers, K, Shizukkuishi, S, et al. Increase in levels of IgG in the serum of patients treated with CoQ10. Res Commmun Chem Pathol Pharmacol 1982;38:3335-338

Folkers, K, Wolaniuk, J, Simonsen, R, et al. Biochemical rationale and the cardiac response of patients with muscle disease to therapy with coenzyme Q10. Proc Natl Acad Sci 1985;82:4513-4516

Fujioka, T, Sakamoto, Y, Mimura, G. Clinical study of cardiac arrhythmias using a 24-hour continuous electrocardiographic recorder (5th report) - antiarrhythmic action of coenzyme Q10 in diabetics. Tohoku Jap Med 1983:141(Suppl):453-463.

Gaby, AR. The role of coenzyme Q10 in clinical medicine: Part I. Alt Med Rev 1996;1 (1): 11-17.

Gaby, AR. The role of coenzyme Q10 in clinical medicine: part II. Cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and infertility. Alt Med Rev 1996;l (3): 168-175.

Hansen IL, Iwamoto, Y. Kishi, I, Folkers, K. Bioenergetics in clinical medicine. IX. Gingival and leucocytic deficiencies of coenzyme Q10 in patients with periodontal disease. Res Commun Chem Pathol Pharmacol 1976;14:729-738.

Kaikkonen J, Nyyssonen K, Porkkala-Sarataho E, Poulsen HE, Metsa-Ketela T, Hayn M, Salonen R, Salonen JT. Effect of oral coenzyme Q10 supplementation on the oxidation resistance of human VLDL+LDL fraction: absorption and antioxidative properties of oil and granule-based preparations. Free Radic Biol Med 1997;22(7):1195-1202.

Kamikawa, T, Kobayashi, A, Yamashita, T, Hayashi, H, Yamazaki, N. Effects of coenzyme Q10 on exercise tolerance in chronic stable angina pectoris. Am J Cardiol 1985;56:247-251.

Karlsson, J, Folkers, K, Astrum, H, Jansson, E, Pernow, B, et al. Effect of adriamycin on heart and skeletal muscle coenzyme Q (CoQ10) in man. In Folkers K and Yamamura, Y (eds.). Biomedical and Clinical Aspects of Coenzyme Q. volume 5. Elsevier. 1986.

Langsjoen, PH, Langsjoen, PH, Folkers, K. Long-term efficacy and safety of coenzyme Q10 therapy for idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy. Am J Cardiol 1990:65:521-523.

Langsjoen, PH, Vadhanavikit, S, Folkers, K. Effective treatment with coenzyme Q1O of patients with chronic myocardial disease. Drugs Exptl Clin Res 1985;l1:577-579.

Langsjoen, P, Langsjoen, P, Willis, R, Folkers, K. Treatment of essential hypertension with coenzyme Q10. Molec Aspects Med 1994;15(Suppl):S265-S272.

Langsjoen, PH, Folkers, K, Lyson, K,. Muratsu, K, Lyson, I, et al. Effective and safe therapy with coenzyme Q10 for cardiomyopathy. Klin Wochenschr 1988:66:583-590.

Mayer, P, Hamberger, H, Drews J. Differential effects of ubiquinone Q7 and ubiquinone analogs on macrophage activation and experimental infections in granulocytopenic mice. Infection 1980:8:256-261.

Mortensen, SA, Vadhanavikit, S, Baandrup, U, Folkers, K. Long-term coenzyme Q10 therapy: a major advance in the management of resistant myocardial failure. Drugs Exptl Clin Res 1985:11:581-593.

Nakamura, R, Littarru, GP, Folkers, K, Wilkinson EG. Study of CoQ 10-enzymes in gingiva from patients with periodontal disease and evidence for a deficiency of coenzyme Q10. Proc Natl Acad Sci 1974;71:1456-1460.

Nakamura, R,. Littarru, GP, Folkers, K. Wilkinson EC. Deficiency of coenzyme Q in gingiva of patients with periodontal disease. Int J Vitam Nutr Res 1973:43:84-92.

Saiki, I, Tokushima, Y, Nishimura, K, Azuma, I. Macrophage activation with ubiquinones and their related compounds in mice. Int J Vitam Nutr Res 1983:53:312-320.

Shigeta, Y, Izumi, K, Abe, H. Effect of coenzyme Q7 treatment on blood sugar and ketone bodies of diabetics. J Vitaminol 1966;12:293-298.

Tanaka, J, Tominaga, R,Yoshitoshi, M, Matsui, K, Komori, M, Sese, A, et al. Coenzyme Q10: the prophylactic effect on low cardiac output following cardiac valve replacement. Ann Thorac Surg 1982:33:145-151.

Wilkinson, EG, Arnold RM, Folkers, K. Treatment of periodontal and other soft tissue diseases of the oral cavity with coenzyme Q. In Folkers, K.Yamamura, Y (eds.). Biomedical and Clinical Aspects of Coenzyme Q, Vol. 1. Elsevier/NorthHolland Biomedical Press. Amsterdam. 1977. pp. 251-265.

Wilkinson, EG, Arnold, RM, Folkers, K. Bioenergetics in clinical medicine. VI. Adjunctive treatment of periodontal disease with coenzyme Q10. Res Commun Chem Pathol Pharmacol 1976:14:715-719.

Wilkinson, EG, Arnold, RM, Folkers, K, et al. Bioenergetics in clinical medicine. II. Adjunctive treatment with coenzyme Q in periodontal therapy. Res Commun Cliem Pathol Pharmacol 1975;12:111-124.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Fasting For Health

Fasting on water for a period of one to ten days is a safe and powerful way to rejuvenate the mind and body. Long used as the primary detoxification method by naturopathic physicians, there are many benefits to fasting, both emotional and physical. Twenty years ago, I first learned about fasting from Arnold Eheret’s “Rational Fasting” (1914), and Frank McCoy’s “The Fast Way To Health” (1923), books which emphasized the healing abilities of the body if it can rest in a fasting state. As a personal experience, I first tried my own extended water fast of 9 days while I was on a personal retreat. It was a transforming experience. Now, I often use water fasting with my patients, especially for chronic health problems and as a yearly spring “tune-up”

Benefits Of Fasting

Fasting is the oldest healing method known to man. It cures disease, prolongs life and energizes the soul. It was used by Ayurvedic physicians, ancient Greek physicians, it was discussed in the Bible, Koran and popularized by the “physical culturists” of the nineteenth century. In 2003, fasting is again becoming a trendy thing. In the August 14th, 2003 New York Times, (section 9, page 1), fasting is touted to “rest the tummy, restore the soul”. There is a great deal of medical research on the benefits of fasting. My own clinical experience has shown fasting to slow aging, improve liver function, improve mental functioning and to cure arthritis. Research has also shown fasting to alleviate autoimmune disease, atherosclerosis, diabetes, epilepsy, leaky gut, obesity, pancreatitis and chemical poisoning (PCB and DDT).

Slows Aging

For hundreds of years, Europeans have been using the spas on a yearly basis to refresh and renew their health through fasting and hydrotherapy. Although clinical experience has demonstrated the benefit of this protocol, very little is available to demonstrate that this practice works. Recent research has shown that rational diet restriction in the form of short fasts may be the most powerful way known to man to extend lifespan. In fact, fasting is the only documented “alternative health” method to extend lifespan. Studies have shown that high glucose and insulin damages mitochondria and diet restriction (fasting) reduces this total amount of oxidative stress within a cell mitochondria.

(Lee, C., et al. “Age Associated Alterations of the Mitochondrial Genome,” Free Rad Biol Med 22, 7 (1997): 1259–69. Kimura, K.D., et al.. daf-2, an insulin receptor-like gene that regulates longevity and diapause in Caenorhabditis elegans. Science 277(Aug. 15) 1997:942-946))

Improves Liver Function

Fasting enhances the liver’s ability to clear out metabolic flotsam from the blood stream.

As blood is filtered through the liver, toxins are scavenged, neutralized, and reassembled for elimination. Because of the way in which many of us eat and live, the liver can become, sluggish, and congested. Constant exposure to a lifetime of toxins; nutrient-poor diets high in hydrogenated fats; and a leaky gut are among the primary causes of liver burnout. Fasting regenerates the liver’s ability to function in a healthy way. But, be careful, because long term fasting or fasting in a polluted environment can go the wrong way and actually cause accelerated liver disease. Always fast for short periods of time in a pure environment and take a little vitamin C during your fasts, one to four grams will suffice.

(Godin, D.V., Wohaier, S.A. “Nutritional Deficiency, Starvation and Tissue Antioxidant Status,” Free Radical Biol Med 5 (1988): 165–76.)

Benefits Cognitive Functioning

Fasting sharpens the mind and purifies the soul. People who fast report a sense of feeling renewed. The reason for this is that fasting allows the liver to clean the blood which then delivers pure uncontaminated “fuel” to the brain. If the liver can’t clean out the “flotsam and jetsam” of the blood, this allows recycled chemical messengers like adrenalin and other stress hormones to have a second chance to re-stimulate the nervous system. (Basile, A.S., et al. “Elevated Brain Concentrations of 1.4-benzodiazepenes in Fulminate Hepatic Failure,” NEJM 325, 7 (1991): 473–78. / Mulle, K.D. “Benzodiazepene Compounds and Hepatic Encephalopathy,” NEJM 325, 7 (1991): 509–11.) Several studies have shown that as you get liver toxicity, you fail to break down valium-like compounds which creates a toxic state that is truly a state of being intoxicated.

Improves Immune Function

Fasting rests the intestines and liver, both key sites of our immune function. It is estimated that sixty percent of our immune system resides in our intestines. When you rest this major site of immune function with fasting, you potentiate a healthy immune system. Eating can depress immune function. One study showed that 100 gm of sugar significantly reduced the ability of white blood cells to destroy bacteria. The greatest effects occurred between 1 and 2 hours after consumption, but were still significantly below function 5 hours after the feeding. Conversely a fast of 36 or 60 hours significantly increased the power of the white blood cells to destroy dangerous bacteria. (Sanchez A, Reeser JL, et al. Role of Sugars in Human Neutrophilic Phagocytosis,. Am J Clin Nutr, November, 1973;26:1180-1184.

Cures Arthritis

Doctors have been using fasting for arthritis for over one hundred years. It is such a well known fact, the medical literature is even full of success stories. (Adam, O. Anti-Inflammatory Diet and Rheumatic Diseases. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 1995;49:703-717) The best results are found when a short fast is combined with a change to a vegetarian diet and removing offending food allergies. (Kjeldsen- Kragh J. Rheumatoid Arthritis Treated With Vegetarian Diets. Am J Clin Nutr, 1999;70(Suppl.):594S-600S./ Gamlin, L and Brostoff, J . Food Sensitivity and Rheumatoid Arthritis, EnviroTox Pharm, 1997;4:43-49.) Some doctors feel that fasting may be involved in changing the bacterial flora in a favorable way for patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Abnormal bacteria are present in the stool in a high percentage of patients with a variety of autoimmune problems such a s Crohn’s disease, RA, ankylosing spondelytis. Anaerobic bacterial species such as klebsiella and proteus.have been implicated. (Hunter, J.O. “Food Allergy or Enterometabolic Disorder,” Lancet 338 (1991): 495–96.)

Fasting Supplements

Vitamin C: 2 grams/day prevents oxidative damage during the detoxification of a fast.

Milk Thislte: 300 mg/day increases liver glutathione during the fast.

Fasting No-Nos

Fasting for a prolonged period of time can diminish the body’s stores of glutathione making it more susceptible to aging and disease. Low tissue antioxidant status is found under dietary restriction because fasting lowers glutathione detoxification in the liver. (Vogt, B.L., and J.P. Ritchie. “Fasting-Induced Depletion of Glutathione in the Aging Mouse,” Biochem Pharmacol 46, 2 (1993): 257V63.) For this reason, those who are fasting should be very careful of chemical exposure because lack of dietary protein makes the liver unable to process any toxins. Patients who will undergo surgery would probably have less complications to the anesthetic if they were put on a protein dense regimen instead of clear fluids. (Boyd, E.M., and F.L. Taylor. “The Acute Oral Toxicity of Chlordane in Albino Rats Fed for 28 Days from Weaning on a Protein-Deficient Diet,” Input Med Surg 1 (1969): 213–51., Godin, D.V., Wohaier, S.A. “Nutritional Deficiency, Starvation and Tissue Antioxidant Status,” Free Radical Biol Med 5 (1988): 165–76.)

General Guidelines For A Two Day Fast

Decrease the amount of food eaten the 2 days before the fast so the body will adapt more easily.

Break the fast slowly and carefully with warm soups and juices.

During the fast, avoid high stress situations, intense exercise, extreme temperature change and drafts and chemical exposure.

No colonics are necessary

Day 1:

Water: 1 cup every hour with lemon squeezed into it.

Warm herbal tea every 3 hours

Bed rest twice a day for 10 minutes

Day 2:

Water: 1 cup every hour with lemon squeezed into it.

Warm herbal tea every 3 hours

Bed rest twice a day for 10 minutes

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Gut Toxicity Is A Spectrum Disorder

The intestinal membrane is the thickness of an eyelid and is the only thing separating your sterile blood from the bacteria and fermentation products of intestinal contents. Naturopathic doctors and medical doctors have been treating patients for chronic disease by increasing fiber in the intestines for over one hundred years. This was one of the cornerstones of John Harvey Kellogg’s work at the Battlecreek Michigan Sanitarium. Fiber helps maintain intestinal permeability.

Three factors that alter intestinal permeability

1. disruption of the gut flora

2. impaired host immune defenses

3. physical disruption of the gut barrier

Once the intestinal permeability is damaged and toxins leak in, a protein malnourished individual cannot defend itself as well.

Maintenance of gut barrier in a critically ill patient is very difficult because these patients have blood loss, and are on vasoactive drugs, these drugs could cause splanchnic vasoconstriction and gut injury. These patients also have impaired immune function because they are on antibiotics, antiulcer medications, and on dietary regimens that disrupt the ecology of the flora.

The initial step of translocation is the adherence of bacteria from the intestinal tract to the epithelial cell surface or to ulcerated areas of the intestinal mucosal surface. From here they migrate across the cell surface into the circulation. Naturopathic care begins here to heal the barrier and prevent "sewage" from leaking into sterile blood.

Spaeth, G., et al. “Food Without Fiber Promotes Bacterial Translocation from the Gut,” Surgery 108, 2 (1990): 240–46