Depression, part 4: Addiction and Suicide

Tony's picture from PeggyWith the recent suicidal death of comedian Robin Williams still fresh in our minds and hearts, I thought I would spend the last part of this series on depression considering the physiology of addiction in general and the nutritional profile of an alcoholic, along with some helpful nutritional and herbal support protocols.

The question I would like to explore and hopefully shed some light on is,  “What comes first: depression or addiction? ”  My immediate suggestion is that addiction comes first.  Here’s why I think addiction comes before depression.

Quite simply put, alcohol depletes B Vitamin in the blood stream and over time literally cooks and petrifies the liver. The liver then can no longer process its chemistry, chief among which is the conversion of blood sugar to glycogen (inositol) for brain fuel. The brain’s energy depends on glycogen, and without B Vitamins, the pancreas cannot make insulin. Without insulin, blood sugar cannot be delivered to the brain and the cells of the body. A severe drop in energy occurs which triggers a craving for sugar. Alcohol turns to sugar in the blood stream.  The social drinker turns more and more to alcohol for sugar, not to mention inhibition and escape from reality.  As liver function is compromised, vital nutrients such as iron and glycogen, as well as hormones, fail to be released into the blood stream, and left-over hormones do not get deactivated.  Without nutrients and sugar, the brain cannot function. Its chemistry becomes desperately imbalanced.  Depression sets in.  

This is not to say that clinical depression doesn’t come before addiction, especially to prescription drugs and, of course, recreational drugs. Alcohol, of course, is a drug. So, a person who is depressed may turn to drugs and alcohol for a mental and emotional “high.” In this instance, depression does come first. 

As I considered in the previous post of July 22nd, depression is a spiritual event. It is the suppression of love, the imprisonment of the Self; a prison from which escape seems increasingly impossible. Suicide is often chosen as the only way out.

WHAT SUICIDE ISN’T

Suicide is not a cowardly act nor a show of weakness. On the contrary, it takes a huge amount of courage and compassion. Courage to do the irreversible and compassion for one’s family and close friends upon whom the person will no longer be a problem or a burden.  Suicide totally removes one from the stressful and overwhelming reality of one’s world. If you have time to read a well-written and thoughtful article which appeared on Facebook in the wake of Robin’s suicide, click on this link to open a separate window. “The Death Of Robin Williams, And What Suicide Isn’t” by Elizabeth Hawksworth.

A NUTRITIONAL PROGRAM TO SUPPORT THE BODY WITH ALCOHOLISM AND DEPRESSION

St. John’s Wort has been known to relieve depression, and here’s why. This herb has a way of detoxifying the pathways in the liver that process and release stored vital nutrients into the bloodstream. (See the commentary below). It’s a liver detox herb, so powerful that it even destroys drugs, prescription and so-called “recreational” drugs, rendering them impotent and ineffective. That’s a drawback for someone on heart and other crisis intervention medications.  You cannot take St. John’s Wort if you are taking prescription drugs for crisis intervention and prevention (such as heart attack, hypertension and stroke.)

A LIVER DETOX AND REPAIR PROTOCOL

You can detox your liver with a 21-day program. All you have to do is refrain completely from refined carbohydrates and take a few pills and capsules with your daily meals. There are two phases to this detox program.

Phase I:  neutralizes many chemicals directly and excretes them in the bile.   St. John’s Wort-IMT (3 capsules per day: 1 with each meal.)  will destroy drugs by doubling the liver P450 enzyme action that makes drugs ineffective.   NOT TO BE TAKEN WHEN ON CRITICAL PRESCRIPTION MEDICATIONS.

FOODS THAT FACILITATE LIVER DETOX

Phase II: Those not handled by Phase I must be further processed by: a) Sulfation: egg yolk, red  peppers, garlic, onions, broccoli, Brussels sprouts; b) Glutathione conjugation: asparagus, cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts; c) Glucoronidation: sulphur containing foods as in Sulfation (above); d) Methylation: choline, betaine, Folic Acid, B12, raw beets.

THE 21-DAY PHASE I AND PHASE II LIVER DETOX PROGRAM

(NOTE: The following products are by Standard Process Labs and Medi-Herb and are available only through healthcare professionals. It is not recommended to take these products without the professional management of a qualified healthcare practitioner.)

Hepatrophin (3/day) – Helps repair and rebuild the liver.  Helps the liver release iron and other stored nutrients and hormones into the bloodstream. 

St. John’s Wort-IMT (3) – NOT TO BE USED WHEN ON CRITICAL MEDICATIONS (See commentary below)

LivCo (3) – A synergistic combination of Schisandra fruit, Rosemary leaf and Milk Thistle seed (Silymarin).

A-F Betafood (6) – Raw beet tops for liver and gallbladder detox. Thins thick bile for passage through the bile duct.

Garlic  (2 capsules/day) – Contains sulfur, allicin and methyl allytrisulfide. Purifies the blood. Kills yeast.

SP Green Food (6) – A cruciferous vegetable blend contains barley grass juice powder, buckwheat juice powder, Brussels sprouts powder, kale powder and alfalfa sprouts powder, all of which support the P450 enzyme system of liver detoxification.

Spanish Black Radish (6) – Supports gastrointestinal tract function, promoting the body’s detoxification mechanism by cleansing the colon through excretion of toxic materials.  It also contains sulfur, which has an antibiotic action. It acts as a diuretic and promotes systemic detoxification by activating the liver’s primary detoxification mechanism, the cytochrome P450 and the Phase II enzyme system.

Cholacol II (4 tabs. 15 minutes before meals) – Bentonite clay grabs and absorbs toxic metals and chemicals being excreted by the liver and dumped into the intestinal tract for elimination.  This prevents toxins from being taken up into the body during elimination through the gut.

The following commentary on St. John’s Wort-IMT is excerpted from the CLINICAL REFERENCE GUIDE put out to professionals by Standard Process and Medi-Herb.  It is such an important herbal/nutritional supplement that I want my readers to fully understand it. So I am re-publishing it here.

Commentary: ST. JOHN’S WORT- IMT includes INOSITOL and MIN- TRAN and is present in a base of calcium, magnesium, alfalfa, carrot oil, and kelp, which all function synergistically to support the nervous system. St. John’s Wort is used in cases of mild to moderate depression particularly when side effects from standard anti-depressant drugs become intolerable to the patient. Also, it is usable with symptoms of menopause, neuralgia, sciatica, and spinal injuries. In addition to offering the known therapeutic benefits of ST. JOHN’S WORT, this product specifically supports thyroid function. This is critical as even sub-clinical hypothyroidism can be associated with incidences of mild to severe depression and manic-depressive episodes. Clinical studies have shown ST. JOHN’S WORT to
produce similar and/or better results when compared to antidepressant drugs in the treatment of mild to moderate depression (Vorbach ED et aI., 1997; Pharmacopsych 30:S81-5). An additional benefit found was the absence of significant side effects. INOSITOL has therapeutic effects in mood disorders that are generally responsive to selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors. Clinical studies suggest that conditions including depression, pain and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) show beneficial results with the use of INOSITOL, but without the adverse side effects of TCA’s (Benjamin 1., et al. Psychopharmacol Bull 31(1):167-75, 1995).

IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO DO THE ABOVE

At least do this for your liver over a period of six weeks to help it detoxify, repair and rebuild. 

(NOTE: The following products are by Standard Process Labs and Medi-Herb and are available only through healthcare professionals. It is not recommended to take these products without the professional management of a qualified healthcare practitioner.)

Livaplex –  Start with 2 per day and build up to 6. This is a liver detox formulation of synergistic whole food nutrients.

Catalyn –  6 tablets per day, 3 with breakfast and 3 with dinner. This is a multiple vitamin and mineral supplement, the best on the planet.

Albaplex –  6 capsules per day (3 morn and 3 eve).  This will help the kidneys and liver detox and support the immune system in dealing with infection.

Protefood –  3 capsules per day (1 with ea. meal).  This will take sugar cravings away by balancing blood sugar.

Cataplex B – 6 tablets per day (3 morn and 3 eve) to build up the blood. Alcohol depletes B Vitamin.

Silymarin – 3 tablets per day.  An herbal support for liver repair. 

Disclaimer: None of the above recommendations and products are intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease but are solely intended to support normal organ and tissue function in the human body. 

If I can be of any assistance to you with these programs, feel free to contact me by email. Until my next post . . . 

here’s to your health and healing. 

Anthony Palombo, D.C.

Email: dranthonypalombo@live.com

Visit my other blog at HealingTones.org for inspirational reading. As of today, 120 countries have visited my blogs.

 

 

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Depression: Its Causes and Cures, part 1: The Blood Sugar Connection

Tony Pics for SA Book Over the last three days, I’ve had 277 visitors to this blog.  This sudden surge is likely due to a reader and fellow blogger reblogging my blog. The post that piqued her interest was one I published back in January under the title “Cancer Cure and the pH Factor.”   I am duly impressed. You might find her blog interesting as well.

Let’s talk about depression and its causes and cures. Orthodox medicine treats the brain for depression. The underlying cause of depression, however, has less to do with the brain and more to do with the body — especially the gut, as we will see. The brain may control the body’s functions via the central nervous system, with the help of biofeedback through the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system. But the brain is nourished by the body and is only as healthy as the body.  

CAUSE AT A DEEPER LEVEL

Depression is fundamentally about the suppression of energy.  In a certain sense, it is a spiritual event. All energy is love. Love is all that IS. Energy expresses through form, and when that expression is thwarted, suppressed or shut down, pressure begins to build behind the dam of resistance to whatever is trying to find expression, which is love or joy.  The expression of love and joy allows for release of this energy. Elation is the result. On the other hand, suppression of love and joy prevents the release of this energy. Depression is then the result.

This is a simplified explanation of the essential dynamics of depression at a core level, and must be kept in mind as we consider the various causes of resistance that results in depression.   There are at least four areas that need to be taken in consideration when searching for the cause of a person’s depression: 1) blood sugar, 2) the liver, 3) the gut flora, 4) the endocrine glands (hormonal response to stress).  These four areas overlap in most cases of depression, so I will be addressing more than one area at times. I will cover the entire territory in two or three consecutive posts.

DEPRESSION AND BLOOD SUGAR

Blood sugar imbalance is highly suspect in cases of acute  and chronic depression. Low blood sugar — clinically known as hypoglycemia — deprives the cells of energy they need to function. This includes brain cells, which depend on sugar for energy entirely. A classic symptom of low blood sugar is sugar cravings.  If you crave sugar or shake if you miss a meal, you can be sure that you have hypoglycemia.  Hypoglycemia, of course, can lead to diabetes if not corrected. So, let’s look at hypoglycemia, how it can cause depression, and what one can do to reverse this dis-ease.

Blood sugar is regulated by the endocrine system, specifically the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland, and the adrenal glands. The Islets of Langerhans in the pancreas play a non-regulating role of taking blood sugar and attaching an insulin molecule to it as an escort into the cells where is can be used as fuel. The liver is also involved, as it’s a storehouse for hormones, glucose, iron and several other important nutrients, not to mention its primary function of detoxifying the blood stream of metabolic waste, which includes unused hormones. We’ll come back to that later, but first, let’s look at the three chief endocrine regulators, which make up a family of endocrine glands called the HPA Axis. Here’s an excerpt from CNS Forum explaining the chemistry involved in depression:

The hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis in

depression

In depression, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis is upregulated with a down-regulation of its negative feedback controls. Corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) is hypersecreted from the hypothalamus and induces the release of adrenocorticotropin hormone (ACTH) from the pituitary. ACTH interacts with receptors on adrenocortical cells and cortisol is released from the adrenal glands; adrenal hypertrophy can also occur. Release of cortisol into the circulation has a number of effects, including elevation of blood glucose. The negative feedback of cortisol to the hypothalamus, pituitary and immune system is impaired. This leads to continual activation of the HPA axis and excess cortisol release. Cortisol receptors become desensitized leading to increased activity of the pro-inflammatory immune mediators and disturbances in neurotransmitter transmission. (Click on picture to enlarge it for easier reading.)

HPA_DPN_DPN_3

If you had a difficult time following the sequence of events, don’t sweat it, so did I. Body chemistry is a miracle that, like all miracles, cannot be fully grasped by the human mind. What you just read above is someone’s explanation based on a somewhat limited understanding of the complexity of human endocrinology.  As a brilliant colleague, Dr. Janet Lang, once put it in a seminar on functional endocrinology, the endocrine glands are a family and behave like one. We might think we gain understanding of them by taking them aside and studying their function and behavior.  Put them back with their siblings and their behavior changes as they interact with them.  So, we need to understand and treat them as part of a family and not as isolated hormonal glands. (This is why blood tests for thyroid function, for instance, are virtually useless in gaining an understanding of this gland’s output. Saliva tests are far more accurate.)

Now I’ll give you the simplified explanation along with what can be done to correct this one cause of depression using food supplements and herbs.

THE HPA AXIS 

The hypothalamus acts as a mediator between environmental activity and hormonal response to that activity.  Environmental activity is perceived through your five senses and sent via your central nervous system as information to the hypothalamus. The hypothalamus receives, interprets and evaluates this information, then sends signals to the pituitary gland in the form of hormonal precursors that solicit a response in this Master Gland that results in the production of stimulating hormones — such as TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone), ACTH (adrenocorticotropin hormone), and FSH (ovarian follicle stimulating hormone), etc. These hormone precursors are sent to the appropriate ductless hormonal glands in the body via the bloodstream, which then produce hormones that will trigger an appropriate response in body cells , depending on the type of activity being called for. 

The environment, by the way, includes the internal terrain of the physical body as well as the mental and emotional terrain and the activities therein.  An example of the physical terrain’s influence on the HPA Axis would be poor nutrition and toxicity resulting in a health crisis.  An example of the mental and emotional influence on the HPA Axis would be arousal of the stress fight or flight response simply by thoughts about your seemingly impossible situation in life, be it your health, your job, your marriage or relationships, or any number of stressful life situations.  Think about it long enough while doing nothing about it results in chronic stress. It also frustrates and confuses the hypothalamus, which hypes up its secretion of CRF precursors to the pituitary, and exhausts the adrenal cortex causing the pituitary to hype up its production of ACTH to stimulate the exhausted adrenal glands.  So you can see how these glands act in concert with one another and not on their own. 

HELPFUL NUTRITIONAL AND HERBAL SUPPORT

If you know your have sugar handling issues — either hypoglycemia or diabetes — then you can help your body restore balance in this area so that energy can be released to the cells of the brain. This is treating the underlying cause of one form of depression. Here are my recommendations: 

  1. First of all, the liver needs to be detoxified, which means the pathways in the liver need to be opened up to allow chemical processes to work their miracle on metabolic waste, mainly devitalizing it and eliminating it from the body. There are some very excellent nutritional protocols that can accomplish this in just 21 days. They include St. John’s Wort, garlic, beet tops, cruciferous vegetables, herbal detoxifiers such as Schisandra fruit, Rosemary leaf, Milk Thistle seed, and herbal toners and tonics such as Globe Artichoke leaf, Dandelion root, just to list the few main herbs. All these nutritional and herbal remedies are available in product formulations from Standard Process and Medi-Herb, partners in providing health professionals with exceptional and highly effective wholefood supplements and Australian herbs.  You may contact me for professional guidance and product procurement. 
  2. Secondly, the endocrine glands that make up the HPA Axis and the brain need nutritional support and herbal nourishment. Some of the main products in this protocol are Hypothalmex, Paraplex, E-Manganese, Drenamin, Adrenal Complex, Min-Chex, and Niacinamide B6.
  3. Thirdly, your sugar-handling systems need support. Products by Standard Process include Diaplex to nourish the pancreas, Cataplex GTF for chromium to facilitate sugar consumption at the cellular level, Gymnema to balance blood sugar, Inositol for brain fuel, Zypan for digestion of proteins, and Protefood to provide the 8 essential amino acids needed to utilize the amino acids in your food after proteins are broken down by your digestive system. (Details on products are available on Standard Process‘s website.)

DIETARY CONSIDERATIONS

  1. Hypoglycemia conditions need frequent meals and snacks.  Five small meals daily is the recommendation. Some protein needs to be included in these meals and snacks.  Nuts are a good source of protein and are much better than sugars and carbohydrates as they help raise blood sugar without spiking insulin.
  2. Eliminate all processed foods and refined carbohydrates entirely from your diet. 
  3. For Type II Diabetes (a.k.a. insulin-resistance diabetes), refrain from sugars and starches entirely for 30 days. Eat only foods that are low on the glycemic index. The rationale here is to free up insulin receptor sites on the cells by cutting back on insulin production by the pancreas, which occurs every time you eat sweets and starches. It will take approximately 30 days to use up the sugar-laden insulin floating around in your blood stream. The cells are really not “resistant” to insulin, they simply have no room left to receive any more sugar-laden insulin . . . thus the need to stop spiking insulin. A liver detox could be done at least once a year.
  4. For Type I Diabetics (a.k.a. insulin-dependent diabetes), the best you can do is give ample support to your body’s sugar handling systems and, of course, observe a diabetic diet. You would be wise to eliminate all refined carbohydrate and processed foods from your diet. Nutritional therapeutic support could be incorporated into your daily regimen of meds, especially for the insulin-producing B cell in your pancreas which may be able to be regenerated if they are not entirely burned out. The protocol would include Diaplex, Cataplex GTF, Gymnema, Cataplex B and Inositol. A liver detox could be done at least once a year. 

The products recommended above are only available through licensed healthcare professionals. You are welcome to consult with me by email or by phone for a modest fee, as well as to order products. 

(Note: These blog articles and recommendations made therein are not intended to diagnose or treat any disease and are not to be construed to preclude appropriate medical attention.)

In my next post we will consider the impressive role the gut flora plays in depression and health in general. Until then, here’s to your health and healing.

Anthony Palombo, D.C.

Email: dranthonypalombo@live.com 

See my second blog, HealingTones.org, for inspiring articles on handling sacred energy. Recently I’ve been writing about our Electromagnetic Universe and the Body Electric. 

 

21-Day Purification Program Clip

View only if you want to cleanse your body temple, loose weight and clarify your thinking and your skin.

To your health and healing,

Dr. Tony Palombo

Email me for more information about the program, personal support during it, and to order the products  for the program:  tpal70@gmail.com.

P.S.  As promised, we will continue our consideration around calcium in my next post.

Walnuts Declared a Drug by the FDA

WRITTEN BY MICHAEL TENNANT   
THURSDAY, 21 JULY 2011 10:10
 SEEN ANY WALNUTS IN YOUR
                                                       MEDICINE CABINET LATELY? 
 According to the Food and Drug Administration, that is precisely where you should find them. Because Diamond Foods made truthful claims about the health benefits of consuming walnuts that the FDA didn’t approve, it sent the company a letter declaring, “Your walnut products are drugs” — and “new drugs” at that — and, therefore, “they may not legally be marketed … in the United States without an approved new drug application.” The agency even threatened Diamond with “seizure” if it failed to comply.

Diamond’s transgression was to make “financial investments to educate the public and supply them with walnuts,” as William Faloon of Life Extension magazine put it. On its website and packaging, the company stated that the omega-3 fatty acids found in walnuts have been shown to have certain health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and some types of cancer. These claims, Faloon notes, are well supported by scientific research: “Life Extension has published 57 articles that describe the health benefits of walnuts”; and “The US National Library of Medicine database contains no fewer than 35 peer-reviewed published papers supporting a claim that ingesting walnuts improves vascular health and may reduce heart attack risk.”

This evidence was apparently not good enough for the FDA, which told Diamond that its walnuts were “misbranded” because the “product bears health claims that are not authorized by the FDA.”

The FDA’s letter continues: “We have determined that your walnut products are promoted for conditions that cause them to be drugs because these products are intended for use in the prevention, mitigation, and treatment of disease.” Furthermore, the products are also “misbranded” because they “are offered for conditions that are not amenable to self-diagnosis and treatment by individuals who are not medical practitioners; therefore, adequate directions for use cannot be written so that a layperson can use these drugs safely for their intended purposes.” Who knew you had to have directions to eat walnuts?

“The FDA’s language,” Faloon writes, “resembles that of an out-of-control police state where tyranny [reigns] over rationality.” He adds:

This kind of bureaucratic tyranny sends a strong signal to the food industry not to innovate in a way that informs the public about foods that protect against disease. While consumers increasingly reach for healthier dietary choices, the federal government wants to deny food companies the ability to convey findings from scientific studies about their products.

Walnuts aren’t the only food whose health benefits the FDA has tried to suppress. Producers of pomegranate juice and green tea, among others, have felt the bureaucrats’ wrath whenever they have suggested that their products are good for people.

Meanwhile, Faloon points out, foods that have little to no redeeming value are advertised endlessly, often with dubious health claims attached. For example, Frito-Lay is permitted to make all kinds of claims about its fat-laden, fried products, including that Lay’s potato chips are “heart healthy.” Faloon concludes that “the FDA obviously does not want the public to discover that they can reduce their risk of age-related disease by consuming healthy foods. They prefer consumers only learn about mass-marketed garbage foods that shorten life span by increasing degenerative disease risk.”

Faloon thinks he knows why this is the case. First, by stifling competition from makers of more healthful alternatives, junk food manufacturers, who he says “heavily lobb[y]” the federal government for favorable treatment, will rake in ever greater profits. Second, by making it less likely that Americans will consume healthful foods, big pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers stand to gain by selling more “expensive cardiac drugs, stents, and coronary bypass procedures” to those made ill by their diets.

But people are starting to fight back against the FDA’s tactics. “The makers of pomegranate juice, for example, have sued the FTC for censoring their First Amendment right to communicate scientific information to the public,” Faloon reports. Congress is also getting into the act with a bill, the Free Speech About Science Act (H.R. 1364), that, Faloon writes, “protects basic free speech rights, ends censorship of science, and enables the natural health products community to share peer-reviewed scientific findings with the public.”

Of course, if the Constitution were being followed as intended, none of this would be necessary. The FDA would not exist; but if it did, as a creation of Congress it would have no power to censor any speech whatsoever. If companies are making false claims about their products, the market will quickly punish them for it, and genuine fraud can be handled through the courts. In the absence of a government agency supposedly guaranteeing the safety of their food and drugs and the truthfulness of producers’ claims, consumers would become more discerning, as indeed they already are becoming despite the FDA’s attempts to prevent the dissemination of scientific research. Besides, as Faloon observed, “If anyone still thinks that federal agencies like the FDA protect the public, this proclamation that healthy foods are illegal drugs exposes the government’s sordid charade.”

Well, there you have it!  Here’s to your health!

   Dr. Anthony Palombo

 

Understanding Psoriasis

 Tony Pics for SA BookTaking care of your liver

[ Psoriasis is a chronic condition, which means it’s been festering, or at least coming on, for quite some time due to underlying conditions.  Chronic conditions such as psoriasis have complex underlying causes, along with adaptations the body makes just to survive.  Therefore, this blog is lengthy but well worth reading in its entirety if we are to understand the complexities of this disease.  I appreciate your forbearance and promise you will not be overly taxed nor disappointed, but will be greatly rewarded with in-depth understanding of a little-understood disease.]

Your skin serves at least three functions:  protection, perception and perspirations.  It’s a membrane, made of the same embryonic tissue matrix (ectoderm) as the brain and nervous system, communicating with central control about environmental conditions ’round the clock 24/7.  It also clothes the body in a protective layer, giving you a somewhat more appealing appearance than if you didn’t have it.   It’s also an organ of elimination, so it reflects the conditions of the bowels, liver, kidneys, lungs and lymphatic system.  What these primary organs of elimination cannot handle, falls to the skin and sweat glands to carry out . . . literally.

An immune disorder

I found this explanation of what psoriasis is thought to be by Dr. Howard Sofen, Assistant Clinical Professor of Dermatology at UCLA School of Medicine: “We’ve really changed our whole idea of what psoriasis is, in that it’s really the immune system that’s driving this disorder.

“Psoriasis is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition. . . .  The immune system is somehow triggered, which causes a series of events, including inflammation and acceleration of skin cell growth. Instead of falling off (shedding), the cells pile up on the surface of the skin, forming psoriatic plaques. . . .  Psoriasis often appears in adolescence or young adulthood, but can occur at any age. . . .  People with psoriasis typically experience patches of thick, red skin covered with silvery scales called plaques. . . .  While there is no known cure for psoriasis, there have been many advancements in psoriatic disease research and psoriasis treatment. The evolving understanding of psoriasis as a disease of the immune system has expanded significantly the variety of available treatments, including biologic therapies such as STELARA™. . . .”  

There is this explanation of how this drug works:  “An overactive immune system can lead to high levels of IL-12 and IL-23, two proteins that have been found in psoriatic skin plaques. STELARA™, a biologic medicine, binds to IL-12 and IL-23. By preventing these two proteins from attaching to cells in your body, STELARA™ may slow down the production of skin cells and may reduce inflammation.”

Then there’s this warning:  “STELARA™ can increase your chance of having serious side effects including:  serious infections. STELARA™ may lower your ability to fight infections and may increase your risk of infections. While taking STELARA™, some people have serious infections, which may require hospitalization, including tuberculosis (TB), and infections caused by bacteria, fungi, or viruses.”

Now, I love it when medicine announces “there is no known cure” for a disease and then proceeds to treat it with drugs that have harmful side effects.  At least they are offering reportedly effective treatment for the symptoms and with it blessed relief from pain and misery.  My reasoning however is this: if it is indeed the immune system that’s driving psoriasis, then it would stand to reason that the overactive immune system would be modulated (balanced) by the treatment, not weakened.   So, let’s talk about this so-called ” immune system” and what’s “driving” it to excess in producing inflammation and proliferation of skin cells.  Let’s also talk about inflammation.

Immune Alliance

Actually, there is no  “immune system” as such in the body.  There is rather an “immune alliance” made up of many organs and systems whose shared primary role is the elimination of toxic waste from the body.  Inflammation is literally a fiery response to infection in an effort to burn up what can’t or won’t be easily eliminated. Infection is an immune response brought on by pathogens, such as bacteria , fungi and viruses, that multiply faster than the elimination systems can deal with. Pathogens thrive in an acid environment, so the pH of the skin is a significant factor.  The thymus gland, which is thought of as the “immune system,” plays a central role in tagging and eliminating toxins from the body.

[Note: I have a very beautiful, inspiring and in-depth meditation on the Thymus Gland as the brain of the immune alliance of the body under the direction of the “Spirit of Purification”  in my book Sacred Anatomy.   You will come away from reading it utterly in a state of awe at the impeccable design and intricate function of this vital aspect of your body temple — as you will reading any one section of this beautiful book.  You can order it online at my website www.healingandattunement.com, or simply drop me an email at tpal70@gmail.com. The following is an excerpt from my book that will give you a better understanding of your “immune system.”]

“The Thymus is the control center for the electromagnetic energy of the body.  It is with this energy that the body maintains its integrity and protective hedge. Although we speak of an “immune system,” the reality is that the body does not have an immune system in as much as it is an immune system in its functional totality, considering the vast distribution of lymphocytes throughout the body temple.  Systems such as the skeletal, respiratory, reproductive, endocrine, central nervous system, and others are complete functioning systems with a clear set of organs and responses.  Our “immune system” may best be described as an immune alliance between various systems and organs which, when coordinated by the brain, give an immune response to the presence of any and all non-self elements and associated dis-ease factors that are not a natural part of the internal sacred landscape of the body.

 “This immune alliance is composed of the thymus gland, which develops the immature lymphocytes ; the spleen which produces antibodies and which includes the lymphatic and blood circulatory systems; the long bones of the skeletal system which contain bone-marrow that gives birth to leukocytes (white blood cells). Then there are the organs of the digestive system: the stomach and pancreas, which make Hydrochloric acid and enzymes that destroy ingested parasites and carcinogens, the intestinal flora which destroy pathogenic microbes and manufacture B12, and the liver which detoxifies the blood and produces enzymes that break down dead tissue cells and repair those that are damaged.  So when I speak of the “immune system,” it is to this alliance that I am referring and not to some specific system in the body.” 

With this perspective, you may better understand what I’m about to say about psoriasis and its cousin scleroderma, a hardening and shrinking of the skin, as well as the rationale behind my recommended treatment of the cause of this disorder.  Both of these disorders are driven by an over-zealous immune response that has been thrown into survival and defensive mode.   This thickening of the skin with psoriasis has several causal factors.  Functionally, it reflects a toxic and congested liver that can no longer function normally in ridding the blood of toxic waste.  Holistically, it reflects a long-standing guarded condition in the heart, or emotional realm, which serves the individual as a wall of protection.

Louise Hay describes the nature of this wall as a “Fear of being hurt. Deadening the senses and the self.  Refusing to accept responsibility for our own feelings.” (from You Can Heal Your Life).  This emotional “dis-ease”  underlies this physical disease of the skin, and must be addressed along with the physical condition itself.

The proliferation of the skin cells relates to the building of this “wall” of protection.  The over-zealous (hyperactive) immune response is to the overwhelming onslaught of dying cells and other debris left by infection.  DNA gets damaged by free-radicals. Viral scavengers are needed, along with new cells to replace the dead ones. The signal that the “protomorphagen” scouts (the skin cells send out to give feed back about conditions around the cell) send back to the cell says: “Hey, cells are dying faster than usual! There’s lots of debris out here that needs to be cleaned up. Get busy and create viruses to scavenge the debris, and make more skin cells.”  So, this is what happens.  The body doesn’t make mistakes.  Everything it does is in response to what is occurring in and around the cells.   Viruses are opportunistic scavengers that appear on the scene when needed.  They are normal cells that morph into viruses right on the spot where debris needs cleaning up.   What wisdom the body continually demonstrates!

Rationale for treating the cause

The rationale behind treating the cause of psoriasis with nutritional and herbal protocols is fundamentally this:  By removing toxic waste from the body, it will no longer feel threatened.  The “immune system” is thus relieved of its hyperactivity and allowed to turn to other functions, such as healing and repairing damaged tissues.  This is also the rationale for addressing the emotional aspects of psoriasis.  By removing the toxic feelings and thoughts, the sympathetic-dominance of the fight or flight response of the body is dis-engaged, returning the person to a more relaxed, parasympathetic state wherein real health and growth can take place.  In other words, the “wall” is no longer needed, therefore the symptoms are no longer necessary and will subside and gradually disappear altogether.

The physical manifestation can be addressed nutritionally by supporting the liver and other organs of elimination, along with the immune alliance.  The emotional factors underlying the physical symptoms can be addressed very easily and effectively with B.E.S.T. (Bio-Energetic Synchronization Technique) developed and taught by Dr. Milton T. Morter, a biochemist and chiropractor from Rogers, Arkansas.  I am certified in this work and have found it to be a marvelous technique for addressing the emotional and mental factors behind disease.  [To find a B.E.S.T. practitioner near you, go online to www.morterhealthsystem.com.]

Support of the liver starts with first removing those things in one’s lifestyle that abuse and hurt the liver.  In probably the greater number of cases, alcohol and other drugs are involved.   Alcohol literally cooks the liver, hardening it to the point where it can no longer function chemically to process and disarm toxins.  Drugs do as well, burdening the liver to the point of exhaustion.

Here, again,one can see the emotional factors at work driving the individual to drinking and using drugs in order to avoid facing his or her state of emotional turmoil inside.   The thickening of the skin reflects the protective shell erected in the heart realm with a large and well defended sign posted that says “Private! Keep Out!”

Nutritional and herbal protocols

Nutritional support would include detoxification of the liver pathways with herbal and therapeutic nutrients.  Standard Process Labs puts out some very effective formulae for this purpose.  Products like Livaplex,  AF Betafood, Hepatrophin, St. John’s Wort, Organic Garlic,  Spanish Black Radish, Cruciferrous Complete, along with LivTon and LivCo, botanicals by Medi Herb, the herbal division of Standard Process Labs, comprise a 21-day protocol for liver detoxification.*

Calcium metabolism and mobilization play a facilitating role in the infection process.  One can appreciate the impact which emotions have on endocrine function, such as that of the thyroid gland which oversees the utilization of calcium.  Suppressed emotions depress hormonal function.   Sugar consumption may increase as a lift for blood sugar where hypoglycemia and/or diabetes has set in with the increase of blood alcohol that turns to sugar.   Hormonal balance is thrown into disarray as glands fail to function harmoniously and the liver cannot release stored hormones and glycogen.  Zypan (Betaine Hydrochloride) helps support the utilization of calcium, as well as destroy ingested parasites and carcinogens,  and Cataplex G  helps with circulation by relaxing nerves in the blood vessels . Vitamin G (a B Vitamin) acts as a vaso-dialator to increase the flow of blood throughout the body, which helps bring down high blood pressure but is contraindicated in cases of low blood pressure.  Vitamin G also contains the lipotrophic factors, Choline and Inositol, that metabolize fat needed to repair nerves and skin, so it helps with liver function and skin health.

LivCo, which has a plentiful amount of Milk Thistle,  is especially effective as an herbal support for the liver and serves to  aid in the elimination of toxins and cleanse the liver, support healthy liver function and tissue integrity, protect liver tissue by supporting normal cellular defenses, provide antioxidant protection, support and maintain cellular health, stimulate the biosynthesis of protein and liver glycogen, support digestive health, and ease the effects of everyday tension and stress *

Direct and indirect nutritional support to the skin itself is provided by a long-term protocol, which includes products such as Dermatrophin to support tissue repair and renewal; Lactic Acid Yeast for support to the intestinal flora which destroys pathogenic microbes, such as fungi, and manufacture Vitamin B12; DermCo and LivTon to support skin renewal and integrity, digestion, blood uric acid levels, and elimination of toxins in the liver and intestinal tract, and Black Current Seed Oil,  “an excellent source of omega-6 fatty acids. Gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) converts to a hormone-like substance called prostaglandin E1 (PGE1). PGE1 helps maintain blood flow, fat metabolism, and fluid balance.”* Fat is what the brain and nervous system, including the skin, are largely composed of.  Aloe (also by Medi Herb) can be used topically to balance the pH of the skin, soften and nurture the skin and to keep it hydrated and alkalized, addressing the inflammation.  The herb Rehmannia can help with toxin elimination, adrenal and liver health, as well as immune system support.*

Finally, modulation of the immune response is the most important help one could render to the body in overcoming immune-driven diseases.  Modulation means balancing (as opposed to “stimulating”), and it is best achieved with the help of the herb Echinacea.  I recommend Echinacea Premium by Medi Herb, who brings us the purest and most potent herbals and botanicals from Australia, now made available here in the USA by Standard Process Labs  www.standardprocess.com .

As you can see, much can be done naturally to address both the physical and emotional aspects of psoriasis. For professional coaching  and personal consultation, along with product ordering and drop-shipping, please feel free to contact me by email: tpal70@gmail.com.  Thank you for staying in there for the entire article.  I think you will agree that it was well worth the read.

Light upon your path to health and wellness,

Dr. Tony Palombo

Chiropractor and Applied Clinical Nutritionist

* These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. None of the products listed in this article are intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.