Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis and SET-DB™ Thyroid Protocol
This post is an overview of possible approaches for SET-DB™ practitioners who have the SET-DB™ Thyroid Protocol and care for Hashimoto’s thyroiditis patients.
Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, also called autoimmune thyroiditis, is one of the most common causes of hypothyroidism and is the most common autoimmune disease in the U.S. Studies have shown that 90% of hypothyroid patients test positive for thyroid antibodies, meaning their immune systems are primed to attack their own thyroid glands.
It’s a complex condition that can involve varied biological functions such as genetics, diet, digestion, the immune system, and thyroid function. Correcting one’s faulty genes is unlikely, but the SET-DB™ Thyroid Protocol can address digestion, the immune system, and thyroid function. Getting a patient to improve their diet, permanently, is tough, so tough I never attempted it with my fibromyalgia patients. I think a strong case can be made for diet revision with thyroid patients.
The immune system is tasked with the critical job of keeping track of “self,” our own cells, and “non-self,” foreign substances. It does this primarily by “reading” the surface proteins of cells and substances it comes in contact with. (I also believe the nervous is intimately involved in immunity—how else could SET-DB™ eliminate a sensitivity?) If the immune cell recognizes the surface protein as self it will move on. If it doesn’t, or if it has seen the foreign cell before and knows it doesn’t belong, it releases chemical messengers that initiate an immune response.
Autoimmunity is a case of mistaken identity. Antibodies are made to “self” tissues for a variety of reasons. One that we’ll discuss here is, surface proteins of a “non-self” substance looks enough like surface proteins of some “self” tissue that the immune system attacks the tissue. Besides Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, examples are multiple sclerosis, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis.
In the case of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, the culprit is gliadin, the protein portion of gluten. Gliadin “looks” like thyroid tissue to the immune systems of people with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. When gliadin gets into the body, through a porous or leaky gut, the immune system does its job and tags it for destruction (makes antibodies). Those antibodies will eventually find their way to the thyroid gland where they find cells with surface proteins that look suspiciously like gliadin, and attack.
Even worse, the immune response to gluten can last up to six months. That means if one wants to know if gluten is causing hypothyroid symptoms, they’ll have to stay off it for at least six months.
Hashimoto’s thyroiditis symptoms
The symptoms of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis are typically those of hypothyroidism, such as weight gain, fatigue, hair loss, brain fog, and depression (to name a fraction of possible hypothyroid symptoms). While there are several reasons for hypothyroid symptoms, in this case they’re due to low thyroid hormone production secondary to destruction of hormone-producing cells by the immune system. Fewer cells making thyroid hormone. Because Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is progressive, eventually hypothyroid symptoms appear.
But this isn’t all. Hyperthyroid symptoms—nervousness, rapid heart rate, sweating, tremors, palpitations— may occur concurrently with hypothyroid symptoms. When the cells that store thyroid hormone get destroyed by the immune system, large amounts of stored hormones are released into the blood stream. Thus one with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis can be hyper one day and hypo a couple of days later. Quite a wild ride. Eventually the hyperthyroid symptoms will disappear, after enough thyroid cells have been destroyed, and only hypothyroid symptoms, which are getting worse, remain.
Standard medical care for Hashimoto’s thyroiditis
Doctors may not tell patients their lab tests were positive for thyroid antibodies because it doesn’t change their treatment plan. In fact, most doctors don’t order antibody tests for this same reason. The standard of care is to “monitor” the patient until enough thyroid cells are destroyed to cause hypothyroidism, then prescribe thyroid hormone, typically a synthetic T4. Once they start on thyroid medication, they typically have to take it for the rest of their life.
A few lucky patients do well on T4, but many don’t and end up taking other medications prescribed for things such as depression, high cholesterol, and blood sugar management, all possibly related to hypothyroidism.
SET-DB™ approach to Hashimoto’s thyroiditis
Hashimoto’s thyroiditis patients are treated the same as hypothyroid patients without Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, with the possible exception that the practitioner might want to pay closer attention to autoimmune categories.
Here are some important aspects of the SET-DB™ Thyroid Protocol:
Leaky Gut: A leaky gut allows undigested or incompletely digested foods to get into parts of the body they don’t belong, which can lead to more food sensitivities. Seacure is given to help heal the gut wall and eliminating sensitivities helps reduce gut inflammation. Also, an OSST can help detoxify the intestinal tract and possibly reduce or eliminate infectants like parasites and Candida.
Gluten/Gliadin: It’s my opinion that gluten-containing foods should be avoided by everyone, it’s nice that once treated with SET-DB™, one doesn’t have to worry about getting some gluten in a meal now and then. This BioSurvey doesn’t just look at gluten and gliadin. It goes deeper by looking at enzymes and fractions of gluten and gliadin. It’s a must-do treatment.
Hormones: If a patient is sensitive to a hormone it can be difficult for them to make adequate amounts of it and whatever influence the hormone should have, the reason the body makes it, it may not wield. Special attention is given to TSH, T3, T4, thyroglobulin, TRH, and rT3, but any hormone a patient is found sensitive to is put in the vial before the treatment. It is a must-do treatment.
Glands: I like to think of autoimmune treatments by using a team sports analogy. If individual team members are quarreling amongst themselves, or are otherwise unhappy with others on the team, it’s difficult for the team to have success. If an SET-DB™ autoimmune treatment could be performed on the team the effect would be near-instant harmony that could tip the scale toward success on the field. Glands important to consider here are the thyroid, anterior pituitary, hypothalamus, and adrenals. This is also a must-do treatment.
Thyroid Supplement Organ System Stress Test (OSST(: Supplementing with critical thyroid nutrients can help patients fell better sooner. This OSST just looks for one supplement. You can use the BioSurvey as-is and it will choose one of the two default supplements, or you can test for any supplements you like.
Thyroid Comprehensive BioSurvey: This BioSurvey contains items important to thyroid function not found in ZYTO’s library. It is a must-do treatment.
Other must-do treatments include grains, wheat digestion, dairy, and endocrine disrupters. The practitioner chooses five additional SETs based on the Thyroid Eval Scan or their professional judgement.
If the patient needs treatment beyond the basic protocol, the practitioner runs the Thyroid Category Scan: Advanced and formulates a new treatment plan.
If your license allows you to prescribe, you can monitor their medication yourself. If it doesn’t, you might need to communicate with the patient’s prescribing physician. Do not advise your patients in areas outside of your license; i.e., tell them to take less or more of a medication or discontinue a medication.
Your thyroid patients will likely need a change of medication as they progress through the treatment program. It’s not difficult to know when. If they’re getting too much thyroid hormone(s) they’ll start experiencing symptoms of hyperthyroidism. If they’re not getting enough, their hypothyroid symptoms worsen.
Hypothyroidism and iron deficiency have more in common than you might know or think. This brief post will examine their relationship and how SET-DB™ can help.
Hypothyroidism is a condition where:
Some of the symptoms of hypothyroidism—fatigue, cold intolerance, hair loss—are also possible symptoms of iron deficiency. Iron-deficient individuals may also experience irregular heart beat, anxiety, and restless leg syndrome.
Did you know the thyroid is closely connected to the gut? When there is adequate T3 supply to stomach cells they produce hydrochloric acid, which, among other things, helps break down protein. Most of the iron we eat (at least the most bioavailable iron) is found in animal protein. If we don’t digest the protein, we can’t get at the iron in it.
So, low T3 is tied to low stomach acid and low iron.
And, iron is an an important mineral to test for sensitivity, and treat if necessary with SET-DB™. It’s a must-do treatment in the SET-DB™ Thyroid Protocol and is found in the Minerals Category/BioSurvey.
How is low thyroid hormone availability connected to hair loss?
The answer may be ferritin. From Wikipedia:
“Ferritin is a universal intracellular protein that stores iron and releases it in a controlled fashion. The protein is produced by almost all living organisms, including algae, bacteria, higher plants, and animals. In humans, it acts as a buffer against iron deficiency and iron overload. Ferritin is found in most tissues as a cytosolic (dissolved in the cell’s cytoplasm) protein, but small amounts are secreted into the serum where it functions as an iron carrier. Plasma ferritin is also an indirect marker of the total amount of iron stored in the body, hence serum ferritin is used as a diagnostic test for iron-deficiency anemia.”
Emphasis is mine.
Here is a direct connection between ferritin and hair loss, as found on Dr. Philip Kingsley’s site:
“Correct ferritin levels maximize your hair’s ‘anagen’ or ‘growing’ phase and encourage your hairs to grow to their full length. When you aren’t getting enough iron through your diet, your body takes ferritin stored in non-essential tissue, like your hair bulb, and gives it to essential tissue, such as your heart. Because your hair bulb is where all your hair cells are produced, this leeching of ferritin can cause your hair to shed before it reaches its maximum length.
The average reference ranges for ferritin are 14-170 micrograms per litre, but our research shows that ferritin should be at least 80 ug/L (micrograms per litre) in women for hair follicles to function at their best.”
After some research on the subject, like most lab values, optimal ferritin levels for individuals can vary. One thing I did learn is ferritin can be high for reasons other than excess iron. Systemic inflammation can raise ferritin levels due to its role as an acute phase reactant that up-regulates in response to inflammation or oxidative stress.
So, if one wants to be really careful, they wouldn’t have their ferritin checked when they’re sick, or get a hs-CRP test that measures overall inflammatory status. If hs-CRP is elevated, the ferritin level may say nothing about iron status.
Furthermore, on this subject, Mark Sisson writes:
“Come to think of it, if elevated ferritin can be a marker of inflammation and oxidative stress, the inflammation could be responsible for some of the negative health effects linked to high ferritin. Or, if having too much iron in the body can increase oxidative damage, it may be that high iron levels are increasing inflammation which in turn increases ferritin even further. Biology gets messy. Lots of feedback loops.”
Biology can indeed get messy and science is still learning much about the role iron plays in the human body.
Here is Sisson's follow-up post on Iron.
As for SET-DB™ and ferritin, I couldn’t find ferritin in ZYTO’s library so I added it to the Thyroid Protocol library. It’s not yet in a BioSurvey so you’ll have to test it separately. Sorry Select owners. Eventually I’ll have it in a BioSurvey, when I figure out what else to put it with.
I wouldn’t recommend anyone start on an iron supplement or purposely increase their consumption of iron-containing foods until they’ve had their iron and ferritin tested. A complete anemia panel should include serum iron, transferrin, TIBC, and the saturation percentage.
As a side note, part of the ongoing attack on meat eating is the claim that the iron in meat promotes colon cancer. Sisson unpacks that in the post I referenced earlier, but here’s the gist of it:
The relationship between heme iron (the kind found in meat) and colon cancer is conditional on iron oxidating fatty acids in the colon. Not just any fatty acids, though. The kind found in seed oils, polyunsaturated fatty acids. In fact, studies seeking to prove that heme iron promotes colon cancer can’t get the cancer to “take” unless the lab animals are fed high-PUFA oils, like safflower oil. Feed them olive or coconut oil with the heme iron and the study can’t proceed because no cancer occurs.
Another good reason not to eat industrial seed oils, aside from their effect on the thyroid.
While researching this topic, and the thyroid in general, I took the time to read through the comments section of the posts. You should, too. It’s a real eye-opener. Skip the snark and pay attention to the ones from people who have been suffering with health problems despite improving their diet, seeing their MD (in most cases), and taking the supplements and/or medications they were told to take. Many have negative reactions to the pills and many just don’t get better.
Based on my experience, this is likely due to sensitivities to the nutrients they need to enjoy improved health, but also to all the nutrient groups as well as foods. This is where SET-DB™ can help. Clearing a sensitivity to iron or ferritin could well allow someone to better handle those substances, which could be a big part in them enjoying better thyroid health, and better health in general.
In last week’s post we discussed using either the Asthma or Allergy Report when someone makes an appointment to see you for asthma. To add to that, any existing patient with asthma should be given the report to read. We also discussed what to do on the consultation/first visit and what a treatment program for asthma might look like. This post will cover some of the intricacies of helping asthmatics with SET-DB™.
Things to look out for
Soy. Asthma symptoms are common to soy sensitivity and soy products are literally everywhere. (I had an old Mercedes that had vegetable waxes covering important wiring in the engine compartment that unfortunately was cracking. I bet it was soy.) Soy sensitivity should be handled in the Grain BioSurvey but be mindful of it when adjusting the Range.
Caffeine sensitivity is a common asthma trigger. Watch for a history of unusual reactions to foods like coffee, energy drinks, and even chocolate. They may be getting a dose of it with an OTC NSAID, too. You, of course, would need to check for sensitivity to the foods themselves. Treating for caffeine sensitivity can be helpful to anyone thinking of giving it up as a way to avoid those awful withdrawal headaches.
Salt. Sodium sensitivity will be cleared in the Mineral BioSurvey, but don’t forget about salt sensitivity; it’s a common instigator of asthma symptoms. It’s in the Food Additives BioSurvey.
Salicylates are chemicals both found naturally in food as well as added to food, usually as preservatives. They can trigger hyperactivity, nasal congestion, and asthma attacks. Run an internet search on salicylate sensitivity or intolerance and see how many websites there are dedicated to it. It will boggle your mind. This is taken care of by running the Salicylates BioSurvey.
Here’s another reason to run the Food Additives BioSurvey: asthma symptoms are often triggered by foods other than salt. MSG, sulfates, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, and sodium nitrite come to mind. In my opinion, MSG should be avoided altogether.
Check a patient’s drinking water, especially if they drink tap water (few people I know drink untreated water directly from the tap). Also check it with patients suffering from eczema or hives.
Epidermals. This group can be important for any asthmatic, even those who don’t have pets. Cat dander can linger for years in buildings that aren’t cleaned well between tenants (it can cling to the walls!). Plus, they may have materials found in this group in their home or workplace and not even know. The allergens become airborne and inhaled right into the lungs.
Mold and Fungus. It’s rare to see an asthma sufferer who wasn’t sensitive to mold and fungus, but especially candida. Recall the case I’ve related several times of the daughter of a doctor with whom I shared space that had a chronic problem with candida. One SET was all it took to clear the problem. Treating Mold and Fungus could easily yield great results for one of your asthmatic patients.
This and that
Sensitivity load phenomenon. I think close to 85–90% of the population has sensitivities, likely many inherited. Most of the time they can handle them without experiencing symptoms; the immune system, nervous system, etc., can take care of business in the background. But everyone has a threshold that if they pass, they’ll have symptoms. They can motor past the threshold when under stress: emotional, physical, mental, chemical, etc. Usually it’s a combination of different stressors but many times it’s one severe stressor, such as a death in the family or a serious illness. Just understanding this can help a patient through a tough time.
I bet you didn’t know that 5–15% of asthma cases are caused by exposure to on-the-job irritants. Not to say tell your patient to quit their job, but rather be aware of groups like Fumes and Chemicals when treating an asthmatic. For instance, a study done in England showed that people who cooked with gas were 2½ times more likely to suffer asthma attacks. If it’s due to sensitivity, you can fix that. People’s cars and homes can be filled with volatile organic compounds that may need to be treated.
As you’ll read in the systemic enzyme paragraph below, circulating immune complexes can deposit in lung tissue and initiate lung symptoms like wheezing and excessive mucus production. All the more reason for patients to go through an entire treatment program.
One last category: hormones. You’d be surprised to learn that asthma symptoms can be triggered by hormone sensitivities.
Useful supplements for asthma
Digestive enzymes. While I think everyone should take a good plant-based digestive enzyme, people with asthma should definitely take one. Why? One of the largest, if not the largest, way antigens enter the body is through a leaky gut. A digested food is far less likely to cause a sensitivity than one only partially digested (or not digested at all).
There are many good digestive enzymes on the market. I used Pure Encapsultions Digestive Enzyme Ultra. Swansons Vitamins sells a budget-friendly formulation called n-zymes that uses enzymes made by National Enzyme Co.
RespiraTone from Professional Formulas. (I think you have to have an account to see the product.) You know how some products just work? Almost every time? This is one of those. It worked so well we also had it in stock. It can be helpful for patients who have just started a treatment program. It’s composed of nine herbs with a history of usefulness for lung conditions.
Systemic enzymes. Like digestive enzymes, I think every adult should take a systemic enzyme. Specific for asthma, systemic enzymes help to reduce circulating immune complexes, which, when there are too many or when they get too big, can initiate sensitivity reactions in lung tissue.
Most professional supplement companies offer a systemic enzyme and we tried a lot of them. We settled on Serraflazyme serrapeptase from Cardiovascular Research. I have a bottle sitting on my nightstand, to remind me to take it when I go to bed and get up. Unlike products like Wobezyme, where you might be taking 15 tablets a day, the dosage for most people is one tiny tablet twice a day, on an empty stomach.
Couple these three things with a customized homeopathic remedy from an OSST and you’ve got potent options to assist asthmatics while they go through a sensitivity elimination treatment program.
If you weren’t before, I hope you’re now confident there is plenty you can offer someone suffering from asthma. You may even offer them complete relief.
Last week’s post discussed four potential triggers for asthma: food sensitivities, environmental antigens and toxins, digestive problems, and stress. The post began by explaining that it’s better for patients to go through a complete treatment program but that not all could or would, for financial or other reasons. This post will lay out a suggested approach to helping asthma sufferers with SET-DB™.
Asthma and/or Allergy Report
When anyone calls to make an appointment for sensitivity work, they should be told you require them to read one of your reports prior to the appointment. If all you have is the Allergy Report, that will be the one they’ll need to read.
If they have asthma, they should read the Asthma Report because it’s more specific to their condition and does a better job of explaining how you can help them with their particular health challenge. If you don’t have the Asthma Report edited and ready to use, take a few hours this week and get it done. Then get the Kids and Allergies Report done, if you haven’t already. They’re all extremely useful for helping get people into your office for sensitivity elimination treatment (SET) and will save you a ton of time on their initial visit.
And have them printed as I explain in the Practitioner Manual. Don’t be cheap and staple letter-sized sheets of paper together. The reports will look, well, cheap, and reflect poorly on you. Plus people are more likely to read a report printed as I teach because they look more legitimate.
The Asthma Report is also a great way to educate existing non-SET patients about the treatment without coming across as “salesy.” You simply hand them the report and ask them to read it. No sales talk, no pressure. Let the report do all the work. If they’re interested they’ll ask about it next time they come in or call to set up an appointment. If they’re not interested they will appreciate not being pressured and will return for the services you’ve already provided them with.
I considered (almost) all first visits to be consultations, for which I didn’t charge. They became first visits when the individual agree to receive treatment (and to pay for it that day). Another option is to charge a nominal fee, like $25. Your choice.
Three BioSurveys should be run, then printed and discussed with the patient:
The Consultation Symptom Questionnaire can be very helpful as an asthmatic will likely have symptoms related to food sensitivities. Actually, most asthmatics will have other conditions related to food sensitivities. It’s rare for someone to present with only one condition.
The OSST may or may not show high stress in the lungs even though you or the patient may feel it should. Trust the findings, not your preconceived thoughts. “Today your greatest stress is in your pancreas.” Then you explain how running the full OSST would produce a homeopathic remedy (or whatever you’re using, if you’ve substituted something else for the drainage formulas) that help remove the stress from all or most of their stressed areas. Then you would say something like:
“But as you read in my report, asthma is largely related to food and environmental sensitivities (or allergies, if you’re using that term). Let’s talk about those results.”
You’d then go over the Category Scan, then Common Food Scan as discussed in the Practitioner Manual, adapting the language for asthma as well as any other symptoms or conditions they present with.
Suggested treatment program for asthma
Note: Because of the new BioSurveys added recently, the Foods and Nutrients treatment program now has 25 categories. Recall you can download a PDF for each BioSurvey here.
A complete treatment program would include Inhalants and Foods and Nutrients, a total of 34 treatments. You might need to substitute or add Bacteria and Viruses. I would do the treatments in the following order:
Next week I’ll cover some of the more problematic categories, which can help fashion a treatment program for patients who can’t/won’t go through the entire treatment program.
Asthma is a huge health problem worldwide. Here in the U.S. about 8% of the population has asthma—around 25 million people—including many children. And it’s a problem on the rise.
SET-DB™ practitioners are concerned with addressing the root causes of many of their patients and clients health concerns, not just giving them something for symptom relief. With asthma, I believe the root cause is immune dysfunction of the hyperactivity or hyperreactivity type, as opposed to autoimmunity or weakened immunity.
You’ve seen me write many times that a sensitivity to anything can cause a symptom anywhere in the body. Which is why I recommend having patients go through treatment programs instead of asking you to try and guess what food or environmental substances are causing or contributing to their symptoms.
Not everyone will agree to go through a complete treatment program and some practitioners, for reasons I can’t understand, chose not to offer them, so in the next three posts I will outline a recommended treatment approach for people suffering from asthma.
I’d like to suggest four potential asthma triggers.
1. Food Sensitivities
Diet is, of course, one of the biggest triggers for asthma, as well as many other conditions. The most common food sensitivities are (no big surprise) gluten and diary. Unfortunately for most patients, they have no idea that gluten or dairy can trigger their symptoms because their primary physicians simply don’t know they could be part of the problem. Probably 99% of asthma sufferers are only treated with palliative medications. (I’m not implying they aren’t needed, only that little or nothing is done to look for causation. “You have asthma. Take these medications.”)
Let’s say a patient reads something that suggests gluten can cause asthma symptoms in some people and asks their doctor about it. Even if the doctor listens to them and orders tests, all they’d look for would be alphagliadin in the stool and possibly an enzyme called tissue transglutaminase. (Many doctors will not diagnose celiac disease unless these two tests are positive.) These markers are commonly elevated in people with gluten intolerance, but certainly not always. However, there are other proteins, and metabolites of proteins, in gluten foods they could and usually do react to.
What happens then is most people are sent away from with the assurance they do not have a problem with gluten, when in fact they do. They keep eating it and it keeps causing asthma (and other) symptoms.
This is what makes the Gluten/Gliadin, Grains, and Wheat Digestion BioSurveys so important. Together they contain 107 items, many components of gluten foods, patients need to be checked and treated for if necessary.
And then there’s dairy, which people with asthma are often sensitive to (especially children). Medical testing for dairy sensitivity isn’t very good, if it’s done at all. Physicians knowledgable about gluten or dairy sensitivity might tell their patients to eliminate them from their diet for ninety days to see if their symptoms improve. If the symptoms do improve, and they reintroduce dairy or gluten back into their diet and feel worse, they know they can’t eat it anymore.
If you’ve been on an elimination diet, or have supervised some, you know they are fraught with pitfalls. One, they’re difficult for most people to adhere to—the failure rate is high—because so many people are used to eating out now. The vast majority of people in the U.S. eat at a fast food restaurant at least once a day. Gluten and dairy abound in restaurant food. Two, most people don’t know that gluten- and dairy-containing ingredients are hidden in many foods. So even if they’re eating at home, they’re likely using supermarket products that contain gluten or dairy. The end result is, they feel the elimination diet didn’t help them much and so think gluten and dairy are okay to keep consuming.
It’s so much better to be treated for gluten and dairy sensitivities with SET-DB™.
Also, did you know that about half of celiac sufferers are also sensitive to dairy? They continue to suffer even after eliminating gluten from their diet.
As I said earlier, any food can trigger or aggravate asthma symptoms. One mechanism is through a leaky gut (also called intestinal permeability). Incompletely digested foods, or foods complexed with immune cells, find their way into areas of the body they shouldn’t be in. Some enter the portal vein, then the liver. If they make it past the liver they’ll go right to the lungs, which act as a secondary filter. The lungs may suffer circulating immune complex-triggered inflammation.
Lastly, let’s talk about histamine, an important mediator of the immune system (also called a signaling molecule). Symptoms common to hayfever sufferers are largely caused by too much histamine being released into the lining of their upper respiratory tract and eyes, as well as into the bloodstream.
Histamine is responsible for two main effects in an inflammatory response: dilating blood vessels and making them more permeable to allow more fluid to pass from the bloodstream into the tissues. This allows for immune reinforcements to arrive, but also results in localized swelling, edema, and redness.
Eliminating sensitivities, especially airborne irritants, reduces histamine release and helps relieve asthma symptoms. But did you know histamine is also found in food? This is another way foods can trigger asthma symptoms. Treatment for histamine sensitivity is addressed in two BioSurveys we’ll discuss in a later post.
2. Environmental Antigens and Toxins
Most, but certainly not all, asthma sufferers are sensitive to things like trees, weeds, grass, dust, mold, and the other categories found in the Hayfever Treatment Package. These substances can have a bigger impact on asthma symptoms because they are inhaled directly into the respiratory system.
This area also includes toxins, some we get exposed to without our permission and some we can only blame ourselves for as we purposefully bring them into our home or work environment. Examples can be found in common household cleaners and personal care products, mold or dust mites we’ve neglected to eliminate or prevent from populating, products purchased to eradicate insects or unwanted plants, or any of thousands of other products made for the home or work.
We’re exposed to incredibly large amounts of toxins in our environment these days and we are unaware of most of that exposure. Companies produce more than 6.5 trillion pounds of over 9,000 different chemicals today. A staggering amount.
These toxins can play a significant role in chronic disease conditions, including asthma. Obviously we should we our best to avoid them when we can. Exposure in our homes and businesses that we own is largely under our control. We can use non- or less-toxic products, purchase air and water filters, and use personal care products free of harsh ingredients. But when we go outside or visit places not under our control, we are exposed to large amounts of environmental irritants and toxins. This exposure has a much greater negative effect on asthma sufferers.
SET-DB™ can eliminate sensitivities to these substances and thus can help reduce symptoms, significantly in some cases. But, a toxin is still a toxin and should be avoided when possible.
3. Digestive Problems
We briefly discussed leaky gut earlier. The gut doesn’t become leaky for no reason so it’s important to consider its causes. Here are some possible causes:
We’ll discuss this further in a future post.
This is a broad topic, no doubt. The connection between stress and immune dysfunction has been known for thousands of years. Stress impacts the immune system in many ways and is widely deemed to be a notable trigger for autoimmune disease. And fibromyalgia. I think most of my fibromyalgia patients could trace the beginning of the condition back to an especially stressful time in their life. Death of a loved one, severe illness, an accident or injury, etc.
Who hasn’t noticed that they’re more prone to come down with something when they’re stressed? Students are more susceptible to illness when finals are approaching. It’s obvious stress impacts the immune system.
Disrupted or inadequate amounts of sleep can stress the immune system. About one-third of people now get fewer than six hours of sleep a night. In the 1960s that number was about two percent. Sleep depravation can lead to cortisol dysfunction: too little or too much produced or at the wrong times. Inflammation goes up and immune regulation gets disrupted.
So these are four major triggers of asthma: food sensitivities, environmental antigens and toxins, digestive problems, and stress. In the next post we’ll further discuss a SET-DB™-oriented approach to asthma.
After another surge of late nights, I've released several new BioSurveys, strengthened other BioSurveys, restructured the order the BioSurveys appear in, and reformatted the Treatment Record Forms. Oh, and I'll have the rest of the category lists up by the end of the day.
Another new BioSurvey is available: Bacteria - Probiotics. You’ll find it at the bottom of the list of BioSurveys, in both SET-DB™ and SET-DB™ Fibromyalgia. I’ll be doing some minor reordering of the BioSurveys in the near future, moving some new BioSurveys into the categories they belong in. For instance, the new and fabulous Wheat BioSurvey will be moved up to immediately after Gluten/Gliadin.
There are now 69 BioSurveys.
I also beefed up some BioSurveys, adding a lot of new items to a few categories and a few items to others. Enzymes was significantly expanded.
A few practitioners have asked for lists of what’s tested in each BioSurvey. The only way to get that done is to add everything in the collection the BioSurvey uses to the Stressor Table, then create a report that shows everything in alphabetical order. Tedious work. I have some done but won’t have them all done for a while. In the meantime, you can see what’s in each BioSurvey by running a search for the name of the BioSurvey, then opening the collection with the same name. Make sure you’re searching in the SET-DB™ Library. If you don’t know how to do this, contact your ZYTO coach or check their training videos on ZYTO.com.
I'm happy to announce the availability of seven new BioSurveys for SET-DB™ and SET-DB™ Fibromyalgia. You'll find them at the end of the list of BioSurveys the next time you sync your ZYTO software.
The new BioSurveys are:
Other BioSurveys were updated with additional items.
Here are the items in each BioSurvey:
Wheat BioSurvey: α-Glutenin Glutelin, β-Glutenin Glutelin, α-Gliadin Prolamin, β-Gliadin Prolamin, γ-Gliadin Prolamin, ω-Gliadin Prolamin, Triticin A Globulin, Triticin D Globulin, Leucosin Albumin, Friabilin, Lipopurothionins, Wheat Lectins, Trypsin Inhibitor, Subtilisin/Chymotrypsin Inhibitor, α-Amylase Inhibitor, Acid Phosphatase, Acyl-CoA Oxidase, Fructose Bisphosphate Aldolase, α-Amylase, β-Amylase, Esterase, Lipoxygenase, Peroxidase, Phosphodiesterase, Shikimate Dehydrogenase, Aconitase, Dipeptidase, Glutamate-Pyruvate Transaminase, Catalase, β-Glucosidase
Salicylates: Acetylsalicylic Acid, Amyl Salicylate, Benzyl Salicylate, Bisabolol, Bismuth Salicylate, Butyloctyl Salicylate, Choline Salicylate, Copper Salicylate, Disalcid, Ethyl Salicylate, Ethyl Hexyl Salicylate, Homosalate, Isoamyl Salicylate, Magnesium Salicylate, Menthol, Methyl Salicylate, Nicotine Salicylate, Octyl Salicylate, Phenyl Salicylate, Phenyl Ethyl Salicylate, Proanthocyanidin, Quercetin, Rutin, Salicylaldehyde, Salicylamide, Salsalate, Sodium Salicylate, Tartrazine, Thymol, Triethanolamine Salicylate
Immune System Basics: B Cells, Basophils, Bone Marrow, T-Cells, Eosinophils, Gamma-Interferon, Human Leukocyte Antigen, IgA Immunoglobulin-A, IgD Immunoglobulin-D, IgE Immunoglobulin-E, IgG Immunoglobulin-G, IgM Immunoglobulin-M, IL1 Interleukin-1, IL2 Interleukin-2, Kupffer Cells, Leukotriene, Lymphokines, Lymphotoxin, Mast Cells, Macrophages, Monocytes, Natural killer cells, Neutrophils, Phagocytes, Plasma cells, Prostaglandins, Stem Cells, T Lymphocytes,T4 Lymphocytes, Tumor Necrosis Factor
Inflammatory Response: Erythema, Vascular Fluid, Edema, Fever, Glandular Epithelium, Mucous, Fibrin, Fibrinogen, Thrombin, Endothelial Cells, Endothelin, Cytokines, Immune Complexes, Histamine, Arachidonate, Heparin, Thromboxane, Bradykinin, Anaphylatoxin, Superoxide Dismutase, Nitric Oxide, Growth Factor, Lipoxygenase, Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes, Proteoglycans, Peroxidase, Phospholipids, Mast Cells, Thrombocytes (Platelets)
Cytokines: IL-1 Interleukin-1, IL-2 Interleukin-2, IL-3 Interleukin-3, IL-4 Interleukin-4, IL-5 Interleukin-5, IL-6 Interleukin-6, IL-7 Interleukin-7, IL-8 Interleukin-8, IL-9 Interleukin-9, IL-10 Interleukin-10, IL-11 Interleukin-11, IL-12 Interleukin-12, IL-13 Interleukin-13, IL-14 Interleukin-14, IL-15 Interleukin-15, IL-16 Interleukin-16, IL-17 Interleukin-17, IL-18 Interleukin-18, IL-19 Interleukin-19, IL-20 Interleukin-20, IL-21 Interleukin-21, IL-22 Interleukin-22, IL-23 Interleukin-23, IL-24 Interleukin-24, IL-25 Interleukin-25, IL-26 Interleukin-26, IL-27 Interleukin-27, IL-28 Interleukin-28, IL-29 Interleukin-29, IL-30 Interleukin-30
Plastics: ABS Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene, Acetal (Delrin®) Polyoxymethylene, ASA Acrylic Styrene Acrylonitrile, Bakelite Phenolic, BPA Bisphenol A, Celluloid, Cellophane, DEHA Phthalate Ester Plasticizer, HDPE High Density Polyethylene, LDPE Low Density Polyethylene, Neoprene, Nylon Polyamide, PB Polybutylene, PBT Polybutylene Terephthalate, PEEK Polyetheretherketone, PEI Polyethermide, PES Polyether Sulfone, PET Polyethylene Terephthalate, PMMA (Acrylic) Polymethyl Methacrylate, PP Polypropylene, PPS Polyphenylene Sulfide, PPSU Polyphenylsulfone, PS Polystyrene, PUR Polyurethane, PVC Polyvinyl Chloride, Rayon, Saran Polyvinylidene Chloride, SBR (Buna S) Styrene Butadiene, PTFE (Teflon®) Tetrafluoroethylene, TPE Thermoplastic Elastomer
Insects: The insects in ZYTO's library, plus a few more (all the usual suspects). This isn't detailed here because there is no easy way to print lists of collection items.
I recall having a consultation with a young woman who was accompanied by her boyfriend. Her chief complaint was a deep, crawling, itching sensation in her skin, mainly the arms but occasionally spreading to other areas. Nothing was visible on the skin itself: no urticaria (red, round bumps that itch intensely), no eczema, no plaque formation, etc.
If you’ve never experienced this type of chronic itching, as I haven’t, it’s difficult to empathize with people who are plagued by it. It’s a terrible symptom because scratching doesn’t provide relief. In fact it really doesn’t do anything other than irritate the skin.
And because nothing is visible on the skin, loved ones and friends (and often doctors) think the sufferer is having mental problems. The boyfriend fell strongly into that category. You could tell from the look on his face that he thought she was nuts.
This type of symptom is caused by systemic histamine release as a result of allergies and sensitivities.
When immune cells are excited by antigens (anything recognized by the immune system that induce an immune reaction), they release a cascade of signaling molecules (SM) that cause systemic symptoms and local target organ dysfunction. Each SM produces its own signature of symptoms.
Histamine is responsible for two main effects in an inflammatory response: dilating blood vessels and making them more permeable to allow more fluid to pass from the bloodstream into the tissues. This allows for reinforcements to arrive but also results in localized swelling, edema, and redness. That’s histamine’s local effect.
Systemic histamine release causes the following symptoms:
Headaches: pulsating, whole-head pain, often with a sense of great pressure or bursting within the head
Fast pulse, low blood pressure, irregular heart beat
Itching or burning followed by flushing and an unpleasant heat
Increased stomach acid release with crampy abdominal pain
May provoke an asthma attack
Anxiety and agitation with a diffuse, odd body sensation often described as “my bones are on fire”, “I feel weird all over”, “a deep pricking, crawling sensation.”
Antihistamines may help with localized reactions but have little efficacy on systemic symptoms.
As is always the case, removing the cause is the best course of action. Patients such as this young woman should go through the nutrient and foods treatment program. Unfortunately, her boyfriend put the kibosh on that idea and apparently he was in control of their budget.
I ran into an interesting research paper titled “Food Allergy is Linked to Skin Exposure and Genetics.” The lead study author is Joan Cook-Mills, a professor of allergy-immunology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine.
In case you don’t care or have time to read the article, here are the salient points:
“The factors contributing to food allergy include the genetics that alter skin absorbency, use of infant cleansing wipes that leave soap on the skin, skin exposure to allergens in dust and skin exposure to food from those providing infant care. Food allergy is triggered when these factors occur together.”
Up to 35% of children with food allergies have atopic dermatitis, which can be caused by “at least three different gene mutations that reduce the skin barrier.” Also, soap in wipes disrupt the top skin layer of lipids.
While food allergies among children are on the rise, risk factors can be reduced in the home environment by following these simple instructions:
SET-DB™ practitioners can easily eliminate sensitivities like these, but prevention (when available) always trumps cure.
Dr. Teryl Boothe and selected guests.