After a so-so vacation in Florida in June ("so-so" because of an algae bloom in the Gulf and nearby construction noise) my wife and had a 3-hour layover in San Francisco before flying to Salt Lake City. It’s only about an hour flight, but time in the plane is about two hours due to taxiing and waiting to take off. The plane was a smaller one; only two seats on each side of the aisle. Great for us as we didn’t have to sit by someone we didn’t know.
Across from us and one row in front sat a man I immediately thought looked ill. (I’m sure you know where I’m going with this.) He kept wiping his brow and looked miserable. I would guess he lifted his mask and coughed down into the open space at his feet about 15 times, maybe more. I told my wife, “That man has COVID.”
I'm pretty sure I was right.
My wife started having symptoms later that week and tested positive the following week, both with tests she brought home from work and at InstaCare. I tested positive about a week after her so it may be she got it from the guy on the plane and I got it from her. No way of knowing for sure.
We were masked, of course. My wife wears cloth masks that snuggly cover her nose while I use disposable masks. I can't breathe well in a mask so I pull mine down off my nose quite often; my wife doesn't at all.
I think it's safe to say we have (further) proved that masks don't protect you from contracting SARS-CoV-2, or likely any other highly contagious infectant. And, you're at the mercy of others, like the man who sat across from us, hoping they'll use proper protocol when coughing or sneezing. He didn't. And to put a finer point on it, he shouldn't have been on the plane in the first place. Everyone has to digitally agree not to board a plane if they have symptoms of COVID-19.
I wasn’t nervous or concerned about me getting real sick, I was more worried about my wife who has had longstanding respiratory issues, including a bout of “walking pneumonia" and frequent bronchitis. However, I had her taking what I would call a preventative dose of an herbal lung formula throughout the pandemic and aside from a few days of mildly difficult breathing, she did better than I did. At least she didn’t have a week of on-and-off low-grade fever like I did. I haven’t had the flu in at least 13-15 years and when I did I felt far worse than I did with COVID-19 (though COVID-19 lasted longer).
When the fever stopped I was left with sinus symptoms: constant mucus dripping down the back of my throat that stimulated a coughing reflex. I spent almost a week of miserable nights hacking away before I remembered an herbal sinus formula stashed in the back of the supplement cabinet. Two squirts in the back of the mouth effectively stopped the mucus production for up to twelve hours; I was finally able to sleep through the night. If I had remembered it earlier I would have saved myself a week of unnecessary coughing and lost sleep.
Our experience with COVID-19 is fairly typical for what we hear people around us say now. Most say it was like a mild cold. Others, mostly ones with comorbidities, aren't so fortunate.
As for the supplements we used, my wife has done very well over the years with Emergen-C and AirBorne, and they seemed to help her quite a bit with her COVID-19 symptoms. Me, not so much. I tried them for a few days before going back to taking 1,000 mg vitamin C tablets throughout the day. Still, I can’t say anything I took really did much for me except the sinus spray called S-Clear™ from Natura. It was remarkably effective at drying up my sinuses without the nasty side effects OTC sprays have, like leaving you addicted to them.
Everyone is different, of course.
Some might say I should have taken my wife to the ER when she had restricted breathing. I thought of it at the time and was ready to go if it looked like her breathing was getting worse. As I wrote, it was very mild and did not get worse. Also, when we went to InstaCare early on, she wrote on her intake form about the restricted breathing and not only did the doctor who saw us not exam her, he didn’t even ask her about it.
We have not had any COVID-19 vaccine. We thought we got the virus in March, 2020, (but now think we got something else) and so think we didn't need one. I suppose it’s possible we contracted it a second time, but I seriously doubt it. That doesn't happen as often as the media would like us to think it does. My wife has reacted poorly to several medications so it’s unlikely she’ll ever get one of the shots.
As for me, now that I’ve had the virus I feel I’m better protected from it than I would be if I had been only vaccinated. The CDC might disagree, but there’s more evidence I’m right than there is backing up the CDC’s claim that people who have had the virus should get the shots anyway.
Which brings me to the topic of my next post:
Is natural immunity from having contracted SARS-CoV-2 and survived better, the same, or worse than the immunity granted by the various COVID-19 vaccinations in use?
I’ve run into some good information I’d like to share.
PFAS, also called oral allergy syndrome, occurs when pollen sensitive individuals eat raw fruits, vegetables, or some tree nuts. It happens because the offending protein in the pollen is also found in the food (or something that closely resembles it). Thus, eating the food sets off a reaction because the immune system thinks it's found the pollen it's sensitized to. Cooking the food changes the protein structure so sensitive people can usually eat the food without suffering a reaction.
Animals that don’t want to be eaten can run away, or fight back if they’re able, when threatened. Plants on the other hand are rooted to the ground and so must have other strategies if they wish to avoid being something’s lunch or dinner.
Let’s look at potato, as an example.
Potatoes are tubers that grow underground, where they’re fairly safe from animal predators. Well, at least the tuber part is. The potato leaves and vines grow above ground and are easy pickings for predators of all types.
To discourage creatures from eating the plant, the potato produces its own pesticides. One is a glycoalkaloid called solanine. (Solanine is also found in abundance in eggplant.) Solanine is an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor, meaning it inhibits the breakdown of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine.
So what, you say? Acetylcholine is released at neuromuscular junctions to activate motor neurons, which stimulate skeletal muscles to contract. If you have too much acetylcholine around the synapses of motor neurons, perhaps because you’ve got too much solanine in your body, you’ll likely feel stiff when you wake up in the morning or sit for extended periods of time because of prolonged muscle contractions.
If you’re a small animal or a bug, assuming you survived, you’d likely feel bad enough that you would look elsewhere for a meal next time. Which is the potato’s wish.
If the exposure is sufficient, solanine is poisonous. Symptoms of solanine poisoning are primarily gastrointestinal and neurological in nature: nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach cramps, burning of the throat, cardiac dysrhythmia, headache, and dizziness. More severe cases may include hallucinations, loss of sensation, paralysis, fever, jaundice, dilated pupils, and hypothermia.
When the tuber is exposed to sunlight, it thinks it’s exposed to predators so it goes into overdrive producing solanine in and close to the skin. Any animal that eats the tuber and gets sick will pass on the tuber next time. Potatoes used to be kept in sacks to keep them away from light. Now they’re stored in mostly clear plastic bags and may be exposed to a lot of light. If a potato looks green or has begun to sprout, toss it out.
Animal studies show solanine causes cell membrane disruption in the digestive tract. This exacerbates irritable bowel disorders in mice and destroys GI tissue in hamsters. In humans it’s been shown to affect gene expression of the intestinal cell lining and inhibit proteolytic enzyme activity (decreases protein digestion).
These effects are likely dose-dependent. They may also, in my opinion, be dependent on whether one is “sensitive” to potato or solanine or not. A toxic substance is a toxic substance, but negative effects from being exposed to it may be more prominent in sensitive individuals.
Solanine is also found in tomatoes, as is the glycoalkaloid tomatine, also a “natural” pesticide produced by the tomato plant to discourage animals from eating it. Like potato, tomatine is found in more abundance in the stems and leaves, and in the fruit when it’s still green. Levels of tomatine are very high in green tomatoes but drop dramatically when the fruit ripens. Artificially-ripened tomatoes (sprayed with ethylene gas) likely have higher levels than vine-ripened.
Tomato glycoalkaloids are about twenty times less toxic than in potato. (Still not a good idea to eat green tomatoes [not to be confused with tomatillos].) As with potato plants, humans shouldn’t eat tomato leaves or stems. They can also be toxic to dogs.
All nightshades contain calcitriol, the most active form of vitamin D (do not confuse it with D3). Calcitriol may be the most powerful hormone in the body and is responsible for telling the intestines to absorb more calcium. This is necessary when more calcium is needed, but harmful when it isn’t but occurs because someone is eating foods that contain calcitriol. Or possibly have a kidney problem as the kidney regulates the amount of D3 that gets converted into calcitriol.
The body doesn’t like having extra calcium in the blood because it can affect the heart, among other things, so it wants it out of the blood ASAP. The easiest and quickest way to get it out of the blood is to deposit it in soft tissue. If it occurs in the joints it results in osteoarthritis. If it occurs in the walls of the arteries it results in coronary artery disease.
Nicotine in nightshades
All nightshades contain some nicotine, but there is very little in the nightshades we eat. About 2–7 micrograms per kg of food. Some say it has no consequence, others say it does and may explain why some people claim to be addicted to nightshade foods. It is obviously quite high in the tobacco plant.
Nightshades we eat
There are many members of the nightshade family, but only a few we eat:
Common symptoms related to nightshades
I’ve been concerned about my knees for about five years now. I sprained the right knee pretty bad twice, once in the mid-80s playing basketball (which I did return to) and once in 1999 jumping over a chainlink fence (which I will never do again, unless it’s necessary to save my life, or the life of a loved one). Surgery wasn’t needed either time.
I never hurt my left knee (that I can recall), yet it’s now makes snap-crackle-pop noises when I go up a flight of stairs (but not down).
Both knees can get infrequent, sudden, sharp pain that almost causes them to buckle. Typically caused by going up stairs or some activity where the knee is bent, such as stooping to pick a weed out of the lawn. Other than that, there isn’t much pain, but I feel they’re getting worse.
I’ve also developed progressive inflammation in the metacarpal-phalangeal joint of my right thumb and a bit in the distal joint of my left index finger. And, I got gout in my left big toe last year. I only had one gout flare-up after the initial occurrence that I handled by keeping the joint slathered with aloe vera gel. But, the toe seems to be heading toward being arthritic now. When I realized the thumb was getting worse, and I considered the downside of having an arthritic toe, how it would affect my mobility, I decided I had to find a fix.
I’ve tried different things the past few years, including clearing myself for cartilage and other specific parts of the knee, which I don’t believe did anything. I started taking an herbal formula for the joints last November and feel it’s led my thumb to feel about 75% better. Capsaicin creams did nothing and it’s too early to judge whether the glucosamine/chondroitin supplements I started in January will help. I don’t think these things have helped the toe or knees.
I came upon an article on the Weston Price site that got me thinking about nightshades. I love spicy food and have been ramping up my tolerance. I roast Serrano peppers over our gas range and can eat four or five a meal, plus the habanero pepper sauce I make. I love the heat, but had likely been giving myself an increasingly greater dosage of nightshades.
After reading the article and pondering, I went (almost) completely off nightshades for two weeks. Then I created and ran the Nightshades BioSurvey on myself and did the clearing. (I found it interesting [but not all that important] that capsaicin had the highest dR, considering how many peppers I was eating.) That was a little over a week ago. It seems things have improved. My knees feel less inflamed (the left one still crackles and pops) and even the gouty toe feels a little better. But, it’s still early. Time will tell.
Are nightshades a problem or not? The likely answer is, it depends. Some people can eat them without apparent detriment to the their health while others seem to suffer greatly and do so until they stop eating nightshades (or have them cleared?).
There doesn’t seem to be much research on nightshades causing health problems, but there are tons of anecdotal stories. Many thousands, actually. Is someone making all those stories up? Unlikely.
I think it’s worth looking into nightshades as a possible cause chronic problems or as something that aggravates a condition.
What I’m curious about is, will clearing nightshades be enough, meaning will the clearing allow someone debilitated by nightshades to not only get better but also eat them safely? A toxin is a toxin is a toxin. But, we eat small amounts of toxins all the time without suffering debilitating health (unless we’re sensitive to the toxin?) Lastly, the possibility exists that intolerance to nightshades may depend on one’s epigenetics, or how nightshades interact with one’s genes.
The first thing that needs to be done is, SET-DB™ practitioners need to start using the Nightshades BioSurvey and start clearing nightshades sensitivities. We can then go from there.
For those who wish to go the avoidance route to see if nightshades are bothering them, try the following:
The Nightshade BioSurvey has been in your software since last week. Start using it and report back any experiences. Together we can figure this out.
Here's another excerpt from the new Education Modules. It begins the discussion of what are called signaling molecules. They are very important to the immune system, and to people who suffer from allergies and sensitivities.
When immune cells are excited by antigens, they release signaling molecules that do things important to immune function. Unfortunately, they also cause local target organ dysfunction and systemic symptoms. In modern parlance we might think of this as “collateral damage.” Each SM produces its own signature of symptoms. We’ll discuss the symptoms as well as why immune cells release them.
Histamine is a big one and 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. Recall that I said symptoms related to allergy and sensitivity responses are caused by chemicals released by cells of the immune system, not by the allergen itself.
Systemic histamine release causes the following symptoms:
Headache. A pulsating, whole-head pain, often with a sense of great pressure or a feeling of 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
An asthma attack may be provoked
Anxiety and agitation with a diffuse, odd body sensation sometimes colorfully described as “my bones are on fire”, “I feel weird all over”, “a deep pricking, crawling sensation.”
I heard descriptions like these often in practice. Especially the “I feel weird all over” and “a deep pricking, crawling sensation” when there was nothing visibly wrong with the skin.
Heparin is an anti-clotting SM that inhibits thrombin, which aids in blood coagulation. This allows more blood to flow to the inflamed site. It’s typically released with histamine and is made inside mast cells. When heparin is released, it causes the formation of bradykinin, which we’ll discuss in a minute.
Serotonin plays a role in sensitivity responses, especially with foods. It makes the gut contract, moving food through the intestines. When irritants are present, more serotonin is produced to make the gut move faster, to get rid of the irritants quicker. We call this diarrhea. If too much serotonin is released into the bloodstream, it will stimulate vomiting. Most people think of serotonin only as a neurotransmitter that affects mood, but I bet you didn’t know that 95% of serotonin is produced and found in the GI tract.
Leukotrienes are found in cell membranes and play a key role in asthma in three ways: they cause inflammation, bronchoconstriction, and mucus production. They also contribute to skin inflammation in psoriasis, inflammatory bowel diseases, and the inflammation in nasal passages that occurs in allergic rhinitis.
Prostaglandins are hormone-like substances that regulate cell function throughout the body. There are a number of them, some with positive effects, some with negative. Symptoms they produce include flushing, pain, shortness of breath, fast heart rate, constricted or dilated blood vessels, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps.
Bradykinin is released when mast cells and basophils split open, and, as we learned is stimulated by heparin release. It causes pain by stimulating nerve endings and causes the blood pressure to drop by dilating peripheral arteries. Bradykinin can cause angioedema, which, if it occurs in the tongue or larynx can cause death by asphyxiation.
* Some of this information came from "Food Allergy," a PDF ebook by Stephen J. Gislason MD. It's a highly recommended reading, though Dr. Gislason doesn't think much of sensitivity elimination therapies. The site instead advices a dietary clean-up and sells products to support that. (The website appears to need some modernizing.)
Here is an excerpt from Module 1 of the new Education Modules. One can purchase Modules 1–3 for general education about the immune system, food allergies and sensitivities, and inhalant allergies and sensitivities. The complete set includes two Modules that show one how to implement SET-DB™ and so are for SET-DB™ practitioners only. One can become a Certified SET-DB™ Practitioner by scoring 70+ on each of the Module quizzes. (The quizzes are not mandatory; one can go through the Modules for education purposes only.)
The immune system doesn’t have one central regulating organ like the heart for the circulatory system and the lungs for the respiratory system. Instead, the immune system is dispersed throughout the body. Its functional units are immune cells and their supporting tissues. Its primary function is to recognize invaders and other cells and substances that aren’t “self” and get rid of them. Once a potential enemy has been identified, a complex immune response kicks in to neutralize it and prepare it to be removed from the body.
Let’s review the immune system’s components.
The lymphatic system is the body’s filtration system. It helps sample incoming substances, filter out waste products from cells, regulate fluid homeostasis, and prime the immune system for action when a threat is located. Central to the system is the transportation of lymph, a clear fluid that stores and transports white blood cells, proteins, salts, glucose, bacteria, and certain waste products.
Lymphatic vessels perform a little like blood vessels, carrying lymph to virtually all areas of the body, other than bone marrow. Unlike blood vessels, however, a series of valves force lymph to travel in just one direction, always toward the neck where it re-enters the venous circulatory system. New lymph is formed when specialized lymphatic capillaries allow soluble materials and cells to work their way back into lymphatic vessels.
The lymph fluid, along with lymphatic vessels and nodes, comprise one-sixth of the weight of the body. The major lymphatic vessels generally run parallel to blood vessels.
Lymphatic vessels are connected to lymph organs, which we’ll talk about. Lymph is filtered and lymphocytes are created in these organs.
Lymph nodes dot lymph vessels throughout the body, but namely in the armpits, groin, throat, at the base of the lungs, and in the abdomen. They filter lymph and act as traps for pathogens, preventing them from entering the bloodstream and allowing mature lymphocytes, primarily macrophages, to attack. They also contain antibody-producing cells called B-lymphocytes, or B-cells.
Tonsils and adenoids, at the back of the throat, act as barriers to infectious organisms we inhale or ingest.
Thymus gland, the master gland of immunity, is the principle activator of the immune system. It’s composed of two gray lobes located at the base of the neck under the sternum, at about the 2nd rib. Its primary function is the maturation of T-lymphocytes, which can directly attack antigens without producing antibodies. As these lymphocytes get older, they’re sent into the lymphatic vessels to hunt down and attack infected or cancerous cells.
The thymus also releases hormones that regulate the immune system. These include thymosin, thymopoietin, and serum thymic factor. Lastly, it initiates the differentiation of white blood cells into different types, as needed.
The spleen, weighing in at seven ounces, is the largest lymphoid organ. It lies in the upper left abdomen, behind the lower ribs. It’s functions include producing white blood cells that can engulf and destroy bacteria and cellular debris; destroying worn-out blood cells and platelets; and acting as a blood reservoir. Like the thymus, the spleen releases many potent substances that enhance immune function.
The small intestines are only nine feet long, but the absorptive surface is 600 times longer because the inner lining is highly folded. Peyer’s patches, in the lining of the small intestines, contain both T- and B-cell lymphocytes. It’s one of the largest and most important interfaces between you and your environment. We’ll be discussing it at length in the food allergy module.
Bone marrow is the production site for two types of white blood cells: antibody-secreting B-cells and foreign cell-devouring neutrophils.
Skin is considered part of the immune system because it’s a barrier against potential invaders.
The mucus membrane contains immune cells that produce chemicals, like histamine, during an allergy reaction and secrete mucous that engulfs microorganisms and moves them along for elimination.
The appendix has long been thought to be vestigial, that humans evolved in a manner that made it obsolete. However, recently it’s been proposed that the appendix serves as a haven to useful bacteria when illness flushes the bacteria from the rest of the intestines. A “safe house” or “back-up” system, so to speak that serves to repopulate the gut flora when needed.
And finally, the liver. During an immune response, it’s stimulated to release large numbers of protein molecules known as acute phase proteins. They exert an important influence on tissue repair, immune cell functions, and the inflammatory process. It’s also involved in ongoing detoxification, which takes a load off the immune system by breaking down immune complexes, which you’ll learn about soon.
SET-DB™ “Side Effects”
If you’re short on time, here’s the Crib Notes version: there are no side effects from a SET-DB™ clearing.
There may be soreness resulting from the New-Stim stimulation, but that’s not a “side effect” of the SET-DB™ procedure. It’s a potential, but extremely unlikely, outcome of a small physical force being applied to a sensitive area. Infants aren't fond of it and some elderly might end up with a dull headache for a few hours.
I’ve had a number of practitioners contact me over the years to say one of their patients or clients had an “adverse reaction” to a SET-DB™ clearing. After a little digging, it’s never shown to be true. Just because someone has symptoms after a SET-DB™ session doesn’t mean the two are related to it. It's a case of association not being related to causation.
I never had one negative reaction to a SET-DB™ session and I did thousands of them.
Let’s get into it. (Some of this is a repeat of what I’ve written before in posts and in the manuals. Also, this is essentially an exercise in theory, not fact. I’m stating my opinion based on my experience and research.)
I got started in sensitivity elimination treatment when a patient asked me to learn NAET. I investigated NAET before I went to a seminar by calling several NAET practitioners to learn what they liked and didn’t like about the protocol.
I recall speaking with one practitioner whose practice was largely NAET. He liked that it worked, usually, but disliked that so many treatments had to be repeated. Some had to be repeated soon, some months or years later, and some several times. I never liked this as I think it reflects poorly on the protocol.
I was worried the 25-hour avoidance period would interfere with the lives of busy people, which most people these days are. He said that it did but there was nothing you could do about it. He also told me people occasionally fainted in his reception area while holding the treatment vial, some even falling out of their chair. I didn’t care too much for the sound of this, either.
I also looked into Ellen Cutler’s BioSET and attended several of her seminars. She was a big NAET practitioner until she wanted to add enzyme therapy to the protocol. Nambudripad has you sign an agreement that says if you don’t practice NAET as she teaches it, you can’t say you do NAET. So Cutler had to make changes to the treatment stimulation so that it wasn’t the same as NAET. It is essentially the same thing, though, and so doesn’t need its own discussion.
I also looked into Dr. Lawrence Newsome’s Bio-Kinetics protocol. Dr. Newsome taught that all manner of allergies could be eliminated in one treatment session. When I did the treatment as he instructed, it didn’t work. When I used his treatment stimulation to clear individual or groups of like items, it worked.
I started with a 24-hour avoidance period but eventually it became clear 24 hours was excessive. I knew this because I had patients who left my office and ate something I had just cleared them for minutes later and yet their clearings held.
It seems obvious to me there are major differences in how NAET and SET-DB™ clear sensitivities. And as the adage goes, the devil is often found hiding in the details.
What would cause people to faint after an NAET clearing and why would a clearing need to be repeated (meaning it failed)? To understand this we need to look into the way the protocol works, or put another way, what happens after an NAET clearing.
According to Dr. Nambudripad in her first book, her procedure frees a blockage in one of 12 acupuncture meridians caused by an allergy (her words). She further writes (I’m paraphrasing) that it takes 24 hours for the blockage to completely clear because “the energy” of the clearing has to pass through all 12 meridians. Each meridian is active for 2 hours every 24-hour period, thus her 25-hour avoidance period (I guess an extra hour to be sure?)
The treatment itself is done by using an Activator Adjusting Instrument (or its equivalent) on specific points adjacent to the spine. Cutler’s treatment is done the same way, or is sometimes done via acupressure. If you’re familiar with anatomy you know peripheral afferent nerves pass through relay stations as they enter and go up the spinal cord to the brainstem (and eventually to the thalamus).
Let’s assume this statement is true: NAET can change how a person’s body reacts to a substance by removing a blockage to the substance in a meridian or meridians and the “news” of the cleared blockage travels through all 12 meridians over a 24-hour period.
In contrast, Dr. Newsome’s stimulation (used in SET-DB™) goes directly into the brainstem, then to the thalamus. The thalamus receives information from all senses, except smell, and routes it to the appropriate area of the cortex. Some call it the master “switching station.” The clearing stimulation therefore does not rely on movement through acupuncture meridians.
SET-DB™ effects a clearing when it disassociates a substance or substances with a negative association in the central nervous system of the individual receiving the clearing. To put it more simply, if one’s brain has come to think avocados are bad for them, a SET-DB™ clearing will remove that negative association, meaning it will no longer think avocados are bad. The effect of the clearing is immediate in most individuals*. No one faints after a SET-DB™ clearing and SET-DB™ clearings rarely have to be repeated**.
One (NAET) relies on energy moving through 12 meridians over a 24-hour period, causes stress to some patients (fainting), and some clearings have to be repeated. The other (SET-DB™) relies on an impulse that goes directly into the brainstem, then to the thalamus, does not stress patients, and almost no clearings need to be repeated.
It’s my opinion the manner in now SET-DB™ clears sensitivities is “cleaner” and more powerful than the manner in which NAET clears sensitivities. If it wasn’t it would suffer the same shortcomings as NAET: undue patient stress after a clearing and the need for multiple clearing sessions in some cases.
By “cleaner” I mean the stimulation that leads to a clearing does not have to pass through multiple nerve relays, with the attending possibility that the impulse may be altered/weakened, and does not rely on the movement of chi through meridians.
This reminds me of when I was taught how to do auriculotherapy, which is like ear acupuncture except with micro current stimulation instead of needling. We were told the practitioner can do no harm to a patient with auriculotherapy. It’s the same with SET-DB™: you can’t harm a patient.
I hope my explanation has been clear and convincing enough that everyone can move forward with confidence and help more people enjoy better health. If not, please email me your questions and I’ll try my best to answer them.
*Recall the patients who ate substances I’d just cleared them for within minutes of the clearing, yet the clearing still held.
**Recall me writing in the SET-DB™ Practitioners Manual that I had 2 patients who had to have many items cleared 2 or more times. One had severe chemical sensitivities when she started treatment at my office and the other had multiple sclerosis. None of the other 100s of patients had to have things cleared more than once, except for the rare patient whom I saw many years after they completed their treatment program.
I was on a ZYTO webinar August 7, 2019, and it is now available on their YouTube page.
You might recall that ZYTO asked me to prepare an online course they would offer on an education site they planned to create. For some reason it was canceled; too bad no one told me and I continued preparing my course on allergies. I finished three modules, complete with slides and audio. The fourth was written but slides hadn't yet been done. My plan is to offer the online course myself, hopefully by the end of October.
The presentation I did on the webinar was a significant condensation of the first three modules. It ran a little long and might have been a little to technical for some viewers who don't have a professional degree. Or perhaps not. You can't underestimate the interest of a ZYTO practitioner.
Here is the webinar:
There may be occasions when you’ll want to revisit a past session to either retreat the patient/client for that category or to treat for items you didn’t treat before but wish you had. This might occur when you realized you didn’t set the Range low enough.
For example: you realized you accepted the software’s range suggestion then later realized it was 55 instead of 10, and you want to follow my advise to never have a Range less than 10. You might want to correct this mistake.
You do NOT want to run the BioSurvey again so this is how you do it:
You should rarely have to resort to this procedure, but now you know how to do it (if you didn’t already know).
Vitamin D is not technically a true vitamin. By definition, a vitamin is something you can’t make yourself and so has to be acquired from food or supplements. It got lumped in with vitamins early on before it wasn’t well understood.
There are five forms of Vitamin D. The one we’re concerned with, the one important to health, is cholecalciferol. Cholecalciferol is a secosteroid, a steroid molecule with one ring open. (I’m sure you remembered this from biochem.)
Cholecalciferol is synthesized in the skin from 7-dehydrocholesterol when the skin is subject to ultraviolet B (UVB) light. How much cholecalciferol is made depends on several things: the intensity of the UVB as determined by the latitude, season, cloud cover, and altitude, and the age and amount of pigmentation of the skin. Equilibrium can be reached in the skin within a few minutes of exposure. After that, cholecalciferol degrades as fast as it’s made, making it impossible to get vitamin D overdose from UV exposure.
It’s generally accepted that 5–30 minutes of exposure of the face, arms, and legs twice a week provides enough vitamin D for most people. I’m at 4,700 feet elevation. I can burn in the spring at 15-20 minutes if I’m not careful as we regularly have a UV index of 10. The higher the altitude, the less atmosphere to filter out UVB rays. Cholecalciferol can also be produced from UV lamps in tanning beds, though at much lower levels as most tanning beds produce only 4–10% UVB. Blood levels have been found higher in people who tan frequently.
Cholecalciferol is inactive. It travels from the skin to the liver, where it’s converted to calcifediol, also known as 25-(OH)D, by the enzyme 25-hydroxylase. Conversion to 25-(OH)D is loosely regulated, if at all. Calcifediol is what’s measured in the blood to determine a patient’s vitamin D status and is the sum of what was produced in the skin as well as any ingested D2 or D3. After a typical daily intake of vitamin D3, it takes about seven days to convert it to calcifediol.
Although we measure 25-(OH)D in the blood, it’s not the active form of the vitamin. It travels to the kidney where it’s converted into calcitriol (1,25-(OH)2 vitamin D3), the bioactive form, by an enzyme called 1-alpha-hydroxylase and under the influence of parathyroid hormone. Unlike calcifediol, this conversion is tightly regulated. When these metabolites travel through the blood they’re bound to vitamin D-binding protein.
Calcitriol is very important for maintaining calcium levels and promotes bone health and development. It increases the absorption of calcium from the intestines, promotes reabsorption of lost calcium back into bones, and increases the production of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (influences the brain and peripheral nervous system), nitric oxide (an important vasodilator), and glutathione (the body’s main antioxidant). Lastly, calcitriol promotes the formation and differentiation of new cells. Pretty important substance, wouldn’t you say?
Low levels of vitamin D have been associated with multiple sclerosis, asthma, flu, tuberculosis, and certain cancers. And, as we’ll discuss, certain autoimmune conditions.
For vitamin D to act, it needs to bind to a set of receptors called, not surprisingly, vitamin D receptors (VDRs), principally located in the nuclei. VDRs can be found in most organs, including the brain, heart, skin, gonads, prostate, and breast. And, here’s one tie-in to the thyroid: VDRs are a subset of thyroid hormone receptors.
In general, vitamin D deficiencies are caused by decreased exposure of the skin to sunlight. Far fewer people work outdoors now than before and the use of a sunscreen with an SPF of only 8 can block 95% of vitamin D production. The following conditions are considered risk factors for vitamin D deficiency:
I found several studies that establish a relationship between low vitamin D levels and autoimmune disease (both Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and Graves’ disease). Vitamin D deficiency was 3–5 times as common in patients with an autoimmune thyroid disease than in controls.
The results of the studies indicate:
Vitamin D needs to be present in adequate amounts for T3, the active thyroid hormone, to get into and energize the cell. They both work in the cell nucleus. Put another way, thyroid hormones won’t work well when vitamin D levels aren’t optimal.
However, vitamin D’s involvement in autoimmune thyroid disorders goes deeper still.
Autoimmune diseases are thought to be caused by genetic polymorphism: small changes at the genetic level that affect the structure and function of important cells and proteins, including VDRs.
In fact, several studies have shown that VDR polymorphism is common in those with autoimmune thyroid disease. This means the biological activity of vitamin D is reduced, even when it properly binds to receptors. If VDRs in the thyroid gland are polymorphic, even normal levels of vitamin D can’t produce the same effects as it can on normal VDRs.
Therefore, people with polymorphic VDRs need higher than normal serum levels of vitamin D to avoid deficiency. We’ll visit this topic again when discussing vitamin D therapy.
Assessment of and Ideal Vitamin D Levels
The test to order is the 25-hydroxy vitamin D test. Most labs will have a normal range of 30–100. Many, if not most, MDs won’t consider vitamin D therapy if levels are with the normal range, even just inside the normal range. 1,25()H)D is not tested because it’s regulated by other hormones, such as parathyroid hormone. 1,25(OH)D levels can be normal in a vitamin D-deficient individual.
Research is clear that 35 ng/ml is the minimum level for optimum function, for healthy people. But people with an autoimmune thyroid condition aren’t healthy.
They often have stress, excess weight, GI problems, high inflammation, VDR polymorphisms, and other factors that inhibit production, absorption, and utilization of vitamin D. So, the minimal 25-hydroxy vitamin D level for those with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis may be significantly higher. But how high?
Too much vitamin D is toxic. Get too much of it and it can increase odds of heart disease and, oddly, lower bone density.
There appears to be a close relationship of vitamin D to vitamins A and K2. Higher D levels increase the demand for demand for K2 and A so increasing D intake, especially the higher amount commonly recommended, in the presence of inadequate A and K2 intake is probably unwise.
Vitamin D Therapy
How much and what kind of vitamins D, A, and K2 turned out to be a more complicated topic than expected, so I’ll cover this in a future post. We'll also discuss the SET-DB™ approach to improving vitamin D (and A and K2) levels.
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 about 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 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 system is involved in immunity—thus the success of SET-DB™ eliminating 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’s somewhere 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 look 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 their 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 disappear, when 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 synthetic T4. Once they start on thyroid medication, they typically have to take it the rest of their life.
A few lucky patients do well on T4, but many don’t and end up being put on 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. Digestive enzymes are given to ensure better breakdown of foods and to take stress off the pancreas.
Gluten/Gliadin: It’s my opinion that gluten-containing foods should be avoided by everyone. However, it’s nice that once treated with SET-DB™, one doesn’t have to worry about getting a little 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. A must-do treatment.
Glands: When speaking of autoimmune treatments, I like to use 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. There is little cohesion or cooperation. If a 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. It eliminates the false perception that some part of “self” isn’t really “non-self.“ Glands important to consider here are the thyroid, anterior pituitary, hypothalamus, and adrenals. A must-do treatment.
Thyroid Supplement Organ System Stress Test (OSST): Supplementing with critical thyroid nutrients can help patients fell better sooner. This OSST looks for just 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, like transport molecules and cell receptors for thyroid hormone. 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 affords you prescription benefits, you can monitor their medication yourself. If it doesn’t, you might need to communicate and/or work 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.
The SET-DB™ Thyroid Protocol is already helping many practitioners help more patients feel better and enjoy improved health.
Dr. Teryl Boothe and selected guests.