Category Archives: 19. Autoimmune Disease

Birth Method, Gut Bacteria and Health Outcomes

Birth Method and Health Outcomes via the Gut

Reference: JAMA Pediatrics Jan 2016

When a baby is born naturally, it usually is facing downwards. That makes it easiest to flex and turn its head through the vaginal canal. Now, recalling the 20 or so babies I’ve delivered in my career, I do recall that most of them squeeze out a bit of stool from mom’s rectum just before delivery. Pretty quickly, the babies face then emerges and the baby takes a deep breath and yells. We wipe the blood and stool and messy vaginal juices off their face and hand them over to mom.

What just happened? Mom just did one of her more important actions. She passed on her bacterial biome to the baby to populate its intestinal tract. The vaginal bacterial are heavily weighted to lactobacillus that digest milk just fine. And the 30,000 different species in mom’s intestinal biome get gifted to baby. They all get a healthy start. Now that we know that our colonic biome is critically linked to many health outcomes. This is a good thing. Guess what happens when you get delivered via a sterile C-section. You got it! Your gut gets a whole different start. Then, guess what good things breast feeding does for your gut biome! You got it. Dramatically better diversity and balance of bacteria when vaginally delivered versus c-section delivered.

That’s what Dr. And her team discovered following 102 deliveries of which. 70 were natural vaginal deliveries and 32 Were c- sections. Then 70 women exclusively breastfed,   26 Women breast fed and supplemented with some formula and 6 exclusively bottle fed. At 6 weeks the babies had their colonic biome evaluated.

And this is where it gets really interesting. Being delivered vaginally results in 6 bacterial families having statistically different abundance. This constituted a greater change in abundance and distribution of bacterial families than breast feeding versus formula feeding. In that, there was difference enough.   Pure breastfeeding showed a different population of bacteria in the babies colonic biome than formula feeding. Interestingly enough, adding some formula in made if as though you were only formula feeding, losing the benefit of breast feeding.

Cesarean delivery has been associated with an increased risk for obesity, asthma, celiac disease, and type 1 diabetes mellitus. That is at least 3 autoimmune illnesses that have a connection to type of birth. Don’t you find that intriguing? It suggests that the cross talk between the bacteria in your colon and your immune system is far more complex, and more beneficial than we have understood to date. Our colon is emphatically not just an organ dedicated to conserving water, but rather a complicated, mutually beneficial arrangement with implications we have yet to fully understand.

The implication is pretty clear to me. If you are forced by circumstance to have a C-section for your baby’s delivery, you might be well served to make sure your baby gets a taste of your vaginal bacteria, and some of your stool. And then, breastfed, exclusively.   This study is in progress, and its results should be coming soon. How about a cotton swab?   We already know that kids who grow up on farms with early exposure to animal dander and poop have fewer allergies. Perhaps it’s all by the same route. More diversity.

www.What Will Work for me.   I’m getting a lot more casual about the dirt in my environment. I’m trying to still wash my hands and my fruit/vegetables, just to get off all the pesticides and viruses I picked up off the door nob. But the mud from my yard….may be just what I need. What I want to learn is how to interpret the variety of bacteria when I test it, and I haven’t found a good source to help me sort that out. That is still a work in progress.

 

Pop Quiz

 

  1. You get beneficial bacteria from your mother’s stool at the moment of birth. T or F

True, get over it.

  1. Vaginal delivery results in a very different bacterial biome from c-section delivery. T or F

True

  1. C-section babies get their bacteria from the nurses in the delivery suite, their husbands, the doctor and the nurses assistant, instead of from mom. T or F

True

  1. Breast feeding exclusively appears to provide added benefit for colonic diversity and abundance, a benefit lost with modest formula supplementation.   T or F

Again True

  1. In the future, it may be standard of care to swab a mother’s vagina and rectum to pass on bacteria to a baby at birth, if the baby was born by c-section.

May be. Makes perfect sense. And time is of the essence.

The Devil in Milk: The A1 Casein vs A2 Conundrum

The Devil In Milk: the A1 vs A2 Protein Story

Sept 21, 2015

Reference: The Devil in Milk by Keith Woodford Diabetologia Elliott

Did you know that there are several forms of milk? The protein casein is not the same in every cow. Most European cows have what is called A1 casein. Most Asian cows have A2 casein. Casein is about 30% of the protein in human milk, but 80% in cows’ milk. At position 67, A1 milk has a histidine amino acid, A2 has a proline amino acid.   Beta-casomorphine-7 (BCM-7) is a 7 amino acid peptide that is released when you eat A1 milk, but not when you eat A2 milk.   BCM-7 is a morphine type chemical that can be blocked by naloxone.

Now, there is all sorts of interesting epidemiology around milk. For example, you can show that populations that drink more A1 milk have more insulin dependent diabetes in them in children, and more heart disease in adults. You can also find that Samoan children, raised in Samoa don’t get insulin dependent diabetes, but raised in New Zealand, they do. If you take mice that are genetically sensitized to getting diabetes, and feed them either A1 or A2 milk, you can show that 47% of the mice fed A1 milk got insulin dependent diabetes, but non of the A2 fed mice did. And if you feed them A1 milk, but block BCM-7 with naloxone, they still don’t get the diabetes they otherwise would have developed.

Now, this is where this topic goes down a “rabbit hole” of controversy. Most of the big dairy money in the world that trades milk internationally, uses A1 milk. That means they are in deep trouble if this data is true. A1 milk might be dangerous for you. The dairy trade would collapse. That would mean it would be in “big milk’s” best interest to deny, degrade, denigrate, obfuscate and attack anything they can about this issue. And they have. It is possible to change over a dairy herd from A1 to A2, but it takes about 10 years of time to breed new cows and get the genes into them with proper breeding.   It can be done. It just takes 10 years.

And there continues to be data about the dangers of A1 milk. There was a patent application in New Zealand claiming that autism has a strong correlation to the consumption of A1 mild.   That application was made by the company denigrating the original research, and then withdrawn and never published in the medical literature. Oh, the intrigue!   So, more epidemiology: the Masai in Africa have A2 milk, and drink 7 liters a day. No heart disease. In Europe, the Finns drink only A1 milk and have lots of heart disease. The French have mostly A2 milk, and have half the heart disease. On and on…

What’s happening in Wisconsin?   There are some herds in Wisconsin that are being converted by using A2 bulls.   Some of the alternative media is beginning to run articles on it.   New Zealand seems to be leading the pack in developing an A2 herd. But there remains controversy. And some of that controversy appears to be research that proves the opposite, but was in fact, intentionally sabotaged with BCM7 protein, and should be actually takes as proof of the fact it was trying to unseat. Isn’t the intrigue a riot? Like a detective novel.

WWW.   What do I think of all this?   I believe there to be some truth to it all. Not certain how deep, but I trust passionate truth tellers more than corporate monied interests. Between Johne’s Disease in cows (paratuberculosis that I think may be the cause of Crohn’s Disease) and concerns about how proteins are altered with pasteurizing, I don’t drink much milk.   If I could find A2 milk from a single herd that was Johne’s free, I might reconsider.   I’m certainly going to think about it and pay attention to it. And likely to tell more clients to avoid milk, unless it’s A2.

 

Pop Quiz

  1. Our current milk supply in America is digested into a product that has morphine like qualities to it?   T or F

True

  1. American Milk is primarily A1 milk which is a genetic variation off the original aboriginal milk, now found in Asian and African cows, called A2 milk (even though it was the original).   T or F

True. You are now getting the gist of this article.

  1. There are epidemiological studies connecting A2 milk to heart disease and insulin dependent diabetes. T or F

False. That’s backwards, it’s A1 that is connected to those two.   And autism, and Crohns, and, and, and…

  1. You can convert a herd of cows to being A2 cows by using only an A2 bull for about 10 years.   T or F

True. And it’s happening right now in a bunch of Wisconsin herds.

  1. One little amino acid substitution at position 67 out of over 200 amino acids is all it takes to make this mystery mysterious?   T or F

True. Amazing, isn’t it. But the same can be said for Sickle Cell and many other conditions.

 

Nrf2

NRF2

Reference: NRF2.com, Pall in APS, Thieme, Wikipedia, Science Direct

August 3, 2015

Ever heard of Nrf? (Nuclear factor erythroid derived) I bet you thought Nerfs were some blue cartoon character, or better yet, a foam ball with which you could play office basketball. Not so. Nrf 2 is a protein that is in every tissue in your body, waiting in your cells to be activated. It has a controlling protein that limits its activity until something bad comes along to activate it.   It then travels into your cell nucleus and turns on all the processes that protect your cell from damage by binding to the hARE (human Antioxidant Response Element) region of DNA.   hARE is the uber regulator of all antioxidant response systems in your cell.

With such activation, your cells turn on a very wide array of cell protection pathways. This places NRF smack dab in the middle of your fundamental cell protection mechanisms. Its breakdown logically follows as being central to many illnesses.   Free radicals floating around in your blood appear to be some of the strongest activators of the NRF system suggesting that oxidative stress plays a huge role in many illnesses: Metabolic syndrome, Autoimmune, inflammatory bowel, HIV, MS, epilepsy, chronic kidney disease, asthma, pulmonary fibrosis, sepsis, atherosclerosis.   With that, it logically follows that raising NRF will help treat many of those illnesses.

This is not to claim that NRF is your sole cell protective mechanism. Glutathione is also critical.   What is interesting is the link between the two.   Each of the three genes that encode for the production of the glutathione producing enzymes are individually activated by NRF. As is the gene that turns on glutathione reductase, the enzyme that converts used glutathione back into activated glutathione. As is the gene that turns on the 8 steps to make NADH, the energy source for glutathione. This makes NRF2 and glutathione closely integrated into a system that handles “oxidative stress”.

What causes that stress?   There is increasing evidence that our lifestyle of highly refined carbohydrates, made into products like flour (from any source) which is quickly digested and stimulates the production of insulin, leads to oxidative stress. Once we are overweight, our fat cells then produce showers of activating chemicals that keep it going.   It’s not just being overweight that does it. We live in a sea of chemicals in our modern world, many of which contribute a small part and which, cumulatively add up to a lot of harm.   Heavy metals are particularly bad players.

The $ 64 question then remains, “How do we activate Nrf2 and turn all that bad stuff off?”.   Here is a partial list:   the phenolic antioxidants (code for spices and herbs like turmeric, rosemary, thyme,), the gamma-delta tocotrienols, the isothionates (code word for broccoli and other kale family plants), allyl sulfides (code word for garlic and onions) , carotenoids (lycopene in particular – aka carrots and tomatoes), fish oil, fasting and exercise.   Hmm.   Sounds like a healthy diet.     This sounds like how coffee, chocolate, turmeric, olive oil, broccoli, red hot peppers, green tea, resveratrol, garlic, blueberries, rosemary, oregano, sage all work to prevent diseases like cancer. And at last, I’ve figured out where peroxide (H202) works – it turns on Nrf2).

WWW. What will work for me?   I don’t know how to measure the effects of Nrf2 activation but I believe it is real. There are pills out there touting their ability to activate Nrf2. I’ve given peroxide IV for inflammation and seen great results.   I just want a test to show that it’s working. That doesn’t exist yet. Back to eating a meal packed with tomatoes, garlic, broccoli, hot peppers, turmeric and resveratrol. Sounds like curry with red wine.

 

Pop Quiz

  1. Nrf2 is the common pathway to turn on inflammation. T or F

False. That would be NFκB – another common pathway in every cell but it turns on the fire. Nrf turns it off.

  1. Nrf2 activation is turned off by our modern lifestyle. T or F

True – particularly our consumption of refined carbohydrates.

  1. Fasting turns on Nrf2. T or F

True

  1. Tomatoes and broccoli, blueberries, olive oil all turn it on? T or F

True

  1. We don’t have a good measure to see turned on Nrf2 is? T or F

True, except for how you feel when you have a chronic disease.

The Trouble with Root Canals

The Trouble with Root Canals

Reference: Root Canal Coverup, Meinig

Ever had a toothache and ended up with a root canal?   Did it come back? Were you cured? Do you have a chronic, unexplained condition from which you can’t recover? An autoimmune disease? Are you losing weight, and don’t know why?

Westin Price was just fascinated with this problem. He was a dentist back in the 1920-30s in Cleveland who should be rated as one of America’s genius scientists.   Aside from that interest, he also traveled all over the world, taking pictures of peoples’ teeth and studying their diets, and concluding many of the findings of modern day nutrition 70 years before the rest of us caught up (He discovered Vitamin K2 15 years before the Nobel Prize folks gave it to someone else.). But he also did a huge body of research connecting inflamed, infected teeth with other medical conditions.

Many of his experiments involved removing infected teeth from folks with chronic medical conditions, and then observing their chronic medical condition improve dramatically. He then implanted those teeth into health rabbits and observed them to become ill also, with the equivalent illness the human had. And not just once or twice, but several thousand times. He produced a huge body of research that has laid undiscovered for some 50 years, and is only now being studied and found by credible dentists (Meinig was the president of the American Endodontal Association – and made his living for years doing root canals.)

Here are a few of the pertinent facts he worked with or “proved” that you should know.   Your teeth are not solid. Even the hard dentin is filled with miles of tiny channels that bacteria can hide in. When you have a root canal and have the tooth put back in, it’s still infected. You can’t fix it with antibiotics, as the antibiotics just don’t penetrate into the tooth. You may not be sick, after a root canal, but years later when you have extra stress in your life, like a car accident, a divorce, a death in the family, you are more likely to come down with a chronic disease. Modern dentists will tell you that the tooth is safe, and nothing can get out. It may be that the bacteria can’t get out, but Westin Price did elegant experiments that showed that the toxins get out.   Those toxins play havoc with your immune system, triggering exaggerated responses and thereby starting many other illnesses.

He also had pictures of bacteria in the dentin tubules of infected teeth in his textbook.   Price would take inflamed teeth out of folks, then cut open the dentin, culture the bacteria he found inside, filter the bacteria out but just leave the toxins in the fluid, and inject that fluid into rabbits. He did it over 1,600 times, and always found the same results. The rabbits got sick and died, or developed the same or equivalent illnesses the humans had.

One of the unique findings that I find fascinating is what sugar does to the flow of fluid in dentin. Usually the flow is outward from the inner body of the tooth. With sugar ingestion, your tooth reverses flow and dentin flow goes inward. That allows bacteria to penetrate and take up shop in your teeth. This was not discovered by Price but corroborates his findings and gives a credible explanation for how our modern diet causes so much tooth decay. He did show they then change from oxygen consuming to being able to live without oxygen, and start secreting toxins. And then, with enough of the right stress at the right time, you get sick.

WWW. What will work for me. If you have an unexplained illness, look at your teeth. Do you have gum disease? Are you losing weight and just can’t keep it on? Do you brush AND floss daily?   Are you going crazy with symptoms you can’t figure out?   If you are desperate and are grasping at straws, read this book. It may be a lifeline for you. This knowledge was discovered back in the 20s by one of our genius scientists, and got lost for 70 years. I’m certainly going to floss a lot more. And eat much less sugar.

 

Pop Quiz

  1. A diet heavy in sugar changes the flow of fluid in your teeth? T or F

True. It reverses it.

  1. If you have cavities, you have bacteria in your dentin (the foundation of your teeth) channels. T or F

True also.

  1. These bacteria are the same that are in your mouth at all times, but changed to being able to live without oxygen. T or F

Not fair, that’s in the book and not mentioned in this email

  1. Taking an infected tooth out of a human and culturing the dentin will results in positive bacterial growth, which, when implanted in rabbits, may duplicate the disease the human had. T or F

True

  1. Everyone with a root canal gets better, what’s the big deal? T or F

Maybe true in the short term, but there appears to be a strong correlation with systemic illness occurring when their immune system isn’t as robust as it is right now: after a big life stressor.