Taking 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.
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 email@example.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: firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.