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. 

 

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Seven Glands for Seven Spirits, Part 5: The Blessings of the Pancreas, page 2

“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” (Malachi 3:10)       __________________________________________________________

Tony's picture 2 from Peggy

This quote from Malachi above is one of my favorite verses in the Bible. I don’t know why. It just resonates inside. In a certain way it says that when you give your all into what you do, you will realize the greatest blessing in return, which is what I want this post to be about: being the greatest possible blessing to one’s world.

 We’ve been talking about the pancreas  and we’ve seen how this organ-gland provides a twofold blessing to the body’s digestive and energy systems.  In this post I would like to spend some additional time with the spiritual, or vibrational, aspect of the pancreas as a sacred center for the indwelling of the Spirit of Blessing. Here is the fifth verse of my poem “The Seven Spirits of God”

I am the Spirit of Blessing

I uplift the elements of my world through my Creative Process

So they might become part of my body

I provide realization for my world

THE CAPACITY TO KNOW AND EXPRESS SPIRIT

We are not just incarnate in these physical bodies.  They provide us with specific vibrational pathways for the expression of our creative juices and the delivery of our gifts of spirit.

The sacred endocrine center of the pancreas provides us with the capacity for spiritual expression, an experience of Third Plane Being. From this plane, our hearts, empowered by our feeling realm, rise to give us the capacity to discern and express spiritual essences, such as joy, thankfulness, praise, forgiveness and enthusiasm. Here spiritual things are spiritually discerned. This includes the awareness of the presence of spirit, specifically one’s own presence as a spirit being—an angel, in other words. The spiritual substance generated at this sacred site is fine enough to rise up and begin providing a medium for the transmission of the radiant emanations of spirit from Fourth Plane Being, where the One I Am stands in the midst of the “Seven Golden Candlesticks” described by John in the Book of Revelation:

 And being turned, I saw seven golden candlesticks; and in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; And his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. And he had in his right hand seven stars; and out of his mouth went a sharp two-edged sword: and His countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength. (Rev. 1: 12-16)

In Sacred Anatomy I go into profound detail correlating this description of the One standing in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks with the seven endocrine glands and the “seven spirits before the throne of God,” which John also saw in his ecstatic vision.  Reading this passage sowed the seed of inspiration that led to my writing this meditative journey through the physical body’s sacred anatomy. 

A SPIRIT OF BLESSING

The pancreas provides us with a window through which we may pour out a spirit of blessing into our worlds by making possible the realization of creative ideas and intentions.  It’s a matter of putting our whole heart and desire into our dreams or intentions with deep feeling and assurance—not that our dreams will be realized but that the are already realized. John describes these spirits as “angels” and the seven seals as “churches,” meaning they are sacred and therefore to be used by the angel for creative purposes.  The spirit of this hormonal center empowers the realizations of creative ideas, just as its enzymes and hormones empower the release of energy from the foods we consume.  The pancreas is a power center very intimately associated with the solar plexus.

These seven glands are seals by virtue of the awful power they have the potential of releasing when opened.  Their chemistry, when released, can bring about blessing or cursing, depending on the quality and nature of the spirit we express through them. The spirit of cursing is the shadow side of the spirit of blessing.  If maintained for a length of time, it has the potential of releasing outbursts of destructive energy, such as anger, into our field of creation, as well as the “plague” of diabetes into our body temple.  Chronic complaint and anger are harsh vibrations that destroy the delicate cells of the pancreas that produce insulin for blood sugar management.  On the other hand, as  we maintain an attitude of gratitude and joy, the Spirit of Blessing can deliver its gift of uplifting energy and health. 

The realization of spiritual seeds sown in love is the gift of the angel of this church.  With realization comes awareness that I am a creator being, an angel incarnate, one with the One standing in the midst. I am the blessing being poured out through my window of heaven into the world. Being still and lifting my heart and mind heavenward, I may come to know that I am an aspect of the One Great Spirit of God, which has need of nothing. Therefore, all things necessary for my presence and service on Earth are provided by my Father in heaven whose unconditional and irresistible love draws into my temple the substance of the Great Mother of Creation to provide “meat in mine house”—flesh and form for all that I shall ever need to live a creative and fruitful life. All that is needed is already present with me now and will manifest as needed . . . in abundance. 

BALANCING SACRED ENERGY

When I contemplate the form and function of the body-temple and all its intricate and interacting parts, knowing that here before me and with me is a manifestation of a heavenly design which is perfect, of the very principles and laws that govern all of Creation, I begin to see, with the eyes of my heart, replicating patterns of both structure and function within and all around me in the natural world.

A beautiful example of this type of contemplative visioning can be known studying the manner in which energy is held in a state of balance by various mechanisms of checks and balances for efficient and effective creativity. In my last post we considered the balancing of energy harvested from the foods we take into our bodies, a function of hormones secreted by the islets of Langerhans in the pancreas.  We saw how there are at least three types of these islet cells. Beta cells, the most common type, produce insulin to regulate blood glucose. Alpha cells produce an opposing hormone, glucagon, which releases glucose from the liver and fatty acids from fat tissue; these favor insulin-release and inhibit glucagon secretion. Delta cells produce somatostatin, which inhibits insulin and glucagon secretion. Then there are small numbers of F cells which  secrete a pancreatic polypeptide, which slows down nutrient absorption.  So we can see there are a number of chemicals and hormones produced in the pancreas that check and balance one another.

MASCULINE AND FEMININE ENERGIES

All energies, of course, originate in the One Source and are initially divided into the duality of the masculine and feminine, possessing positive and negative charges. They all start out as one radiant current of love.  They then divide into two sacred forces that are designed to work together creatively so long as they are balanced.

The balancing of sacred energy, both in the individual body and in the collective body of mankind, is accomplished by bringing the masculine and feminine energies into a place of accord where they work together in a spirit of love and cooperation. The feminine energy of the heart realm brings a nurturing sweetness into the mix, along with intuitive insight and deep feeling and passion for empowering the creative process. The masculine energy is more mental and brings such elements as logic and reason, along with mental calmness for clear and positive thought and action.

Imbalance occurs when either one of them becomes overly dominant and controlling. For example, should the masculine seek to dominate and control the feminine, she is shut down and withdraws her sweetness and empowerment.  Or should the feminine energy be in reactive turmoil over external events, her empowering energies are dissipated outward, leaving nothing with which the masculine energy can blend, or partner and dance, in co-creative ventures. The energy level quickly drops in a relationship. It drops in the individual, as well, and in the collective body of mankind, by reason of the same dynamics at work between the masculine and the feminine energies.  

This happens when we suppress our feelings and allow our goal-driven minds to control our expression and action, never minding important feedback our gut feelings may be giving us.  It happens when our feelings are upset and cloud our thinking and vision. It happens when the achieving spirit of competition allows no room for the heart to explore its intuitive sensing that arises from simply being present and available to the impulse of spirit and pure spontaneity.  It happens when the feminine uses her seductive wiles to lure the masculine away from his mission and purpose, but only if he can be so seduced. It happens in patriarchal systems of above-down government based in fear that substitute governance by love from within in a more natural system of partnership and co-creation.   

As these two sacred energies are brought together in a state of balance and harmony, a beautiful song of blessing is poured out of heaven into the world. 

If you would like to pursue this meditation further and in depth, then I recommend your send for a copy of my book, Sacred Anatomy.  The hyperlink will take you to ordering information. This concludes our consideration of the pancreas as a center for sacred energy in the body temple. Our next consideration will be of the adrenal glands as powerful centers for the Spirit of the Single Eye.  Until then, be a blessing and heal your world.

Dr. Anthony Palombo

Visit my HealingTones.org blog for inspirational reading on the current event of “Fourth Density Apocalypse 2012.”  The current post is about the “Wanderers,” and exciting read. 

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