Monday, May 14, 2012
On the exercise tolerance front here's encouraging news:
1. I walked the dog the usual 1-1.5 miles on Saturday.
2. Then I joggled 52 minutes at a 16.5min/mi pace straight through, no walking another 3 or so miles.
3. Then I went to robotics exercise for an hour. I'll be posting before-after measurements in a week or so, which will be the month mark to see how that went. It's very passive exercise so I'm not expecting much, but would be pleasantly surprised if something came of it.
4. I've been gardening something fierce the past week.
The day after joggling I usually feel sore and stiff a bit, but it's more a build up to "DOMS Day" or the 'second' day after using my gams full throttle. That's when I seize up for 3-5 days (gardening/bending usually throws me off a week, too, so add in joggling and you can feel my trepidation waiting for the pain on DOMS Day" - or "Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness")...
Well, drum roll please: I feel pretty darned NORMAL!!!!
Stop. I'm getting misty. Dare I say it: bye-bye fibro legs, the bain of my existance? Time will tell.
(I'm also feeling dizzy the past two days, which I don't know what to make of ... fbg was 72 this a.m. but it's been 45 before and I never felt dizzy :P).
Garden de jour:
(neighbor's ripped up driveway now repurposed as my anti-mud trail to the back yard - sweet deal - pd for labor only.)
Saturday, May 12, 2012
It's a biogenic amine - it has an affect on our body and has an amino acid component to it. Most all food has some amine/protein component to it (even butter fat as I learned from my Cyrex test). Important for regulating the immune system. In fact, it's theorized that disregulation of the gut lining, i.e. leaky gut by histamine sets one up for other intolerances. Have vertigo/Meniere's? Asthma? IBS? Migraines? Rosacea? High blood pressure? Arrhythmias? Sinusitis? Insomnia? Red face/flushing w/exercise or drinking alcohol? Stomach aches? Nausea? Eczema? Hives/urticaria? Body temperature disregulation?
A food allergy is not a food intolerance. Lactose intolerance is because a person lacks an enzyme or is deficient in the enzyme lactase, and it's limited to the GI tract. Fructose intolerance is limited to GI tract. Histamine can work in the GI tract and in ANY tissue in your body so there is much more histamine and the repercussions are huge re: health symptoms.
When they say histamine receptors are in any tissue, they're talking about Histamine 1, Histamine 2 or H1, H2, H3 and H4.
H1 Receptors: found in smooth muscles, on vascular endothelial cells, in the heart, and central nervous system tissue. Causes vasodilation, bronchoconstriction, smooth muscle activation, and separation of endothelial cells (hives/bleeding from pores), and pain and itching due to insect stings; the primary receptor involved in allergic rhinitis and motion sickness. Role in INFLAMMATION: "The production of prostaglandin E2 synthase induces the release of histamine from neurons, CAUSING SYSTEMIC VASODILATION, along with INCREASED CELL PERMEABILITY due to its action on H1 receptors." Neurophysiology: INVOLVED IN THE SLEEP-WAKE CYCLE.
H2 Receptors: Increases intracellular calcium concentrations and releases calcium from intracellular stores. It stimulates gastric acid secretion and regulates gastro motility and intestinal secretion; also thought to be involved in regulating cell growth and differentiation. Involved in gastric parietal cells, vascular smooth muscle, neutrophils, central nervous system, heart, uterus. Physiological responses: stimulation of gastric acid secretion [hence H2 antagonists/histamine blockers like Tagament, Pepcid, Zantac], smooth muscle relaxation (H2 receptor agonist used for asthma, COPD), inhibit antibody synthesis, T-cell proliferation and cytokine production, and vasodilation (smooth muscle relaxation leads to vasodilation).
H3 Receptors: Inhibits release of some neurotransmitters incl but not limited to dopamine, GABA, acetylcholine, noradrenadline and serotonin. Leads to inhibition of the formation of cAMP [I don't know what cAMP is ... later on that].
H4 Receptors: Found mostly in bone marrow and white blood cells. Also expressed in the colon, liver, lung, sm intestine, spleen, testes, thymus, tonsils, and trachea. They mediate Chemotaxis and Calcium Mobilization of Mast Cells.
- heat tolerance: (H1 receptors contribute to increased blood flow during heat stress).
- sleep: histaminergic cells have the most 'wakeful' firing pattern. They fire rapidly during waking, and completely stop firing during sleep. They're found in the hypothalamus and from there project throughout the brain to the cortex to the forebrain. Antihistamines (which block H1 receptors) improve sleep. "...destruction of histamine releasing neurons, or inhibition of histamine synthesis leads to an inability to maintain vigilance. Finally, H3 receptor antagonists (which stimulate histamine release) increase wakefulness."
- sex: released during arousal. Can be facilitated by folic acid/folate and niacin, which will increase histamine release. However, men with too much histamine may prematurely release.
- allergies: histamine is involved in many allergic reactions. Antigens attached to mast cells triggers histamine release and other pro-inflammatory substances. They typically have an adrenal component. Cortisol is a strong anti-inflammatory. If you have no cortisol to counterbalance the histamine release you experience inflammatory reactions and/or symptoms of allergies. "A vicious circle occurs w/adrenal fatigue and the tendency to allergies. The more histamine released the harder the adrenals have to work to produce more cortisol, thereby the more fatigued the adrenals become, which increases allergic inflammation..." - Adrenal Fatigue: the 21st Century Stress Syndrome by Dr. James Wilson.
Digestive enzyme amylase is a natural IgG histamine blocker which stabilizes mast cells and basophils that release histamine. Excessive carbs will chronically deplete amylase which increases histamine-related health problems like allergen reactions and sinus headaches. Use plant-based enzymes w/meals and reduce carbs. Chronic carbs create stress which exhausts the adrenals and immune system. Enzymes break down allergens. If you have inadequate enzyme reserves, histamine is released.
"When we eat carbs, a sm amount of digestion takes place as we chew through the actions of the enzyme amylase, which is in saliva. However, in the stomach, food is bathed in hydrochloric acid, which inhibits starch digestion until food exits the stomach and enters the small intestine. Most complex carbohydrate digestion takes place in the duodenum, which is the section of the small intestine which adjoins the stomach. Here another key enzyme called alpha-amylase, joins with hydrochloric acid to breakdown the exceptionally long starch molecule into its component parts: first into sugars called dextrins, and then into glucose.
Reduction in amylase levels is associated with insulin resistence and glucose intolerance. Insulin plays a major role in the control of pancreatic amylase biosynthesis. The development of severe insulin resistance (hyperinsulinaemia) is associated with impairment of amylase-gene expression and reduction in glucose metabolism. To decrease insulin resistance, one group of adult obese rats was treated with Ciglitazone for 4 weeks. By lowering plasma insulin concentration researchers achieved normalization of glucose metabolism and a marked increase of both amylase content of pancreatic tissue and amylase mRNA.
Pancreatic enzymes are released in response to histamine, as a protective measure against ingestion of allergens and pathogens. If a prolonged awakening includes periodic release of histamine during the alarm/activation phases, this could lead to the overworking and depletion of the pancreas. Thus the exhaustion phase would include a reduction in digestive fire and assimilation, coupled with vulnerability of the GI Tract to allergens and pathogens. " (from bit.ly/JlxUKl )
I'm going out for my walk.
Friday, May 11, 2012
I'm a Biogenic Amine Woman, too.
What the heck am I talking about NOW?! When you read about celiac and gut health like I do, you come across the fact that people often aren't 100% after going gluten free. It's what led me to paleo four years or so ago. I don't actually know what 100% wellness feels like yet, but I DO keep getting better with my changes. I never went 100% low-carb paleo, esp at the beginning; choosing to include lots of fruit, dairy and some gluten-free grains because 100% just seemed daunting and well, bo-ring. I was likely around 75-85% paleo at the beginning. I'm about at the two year anniversary for the heart attack, after which I'd read something to make me to commit to 100% dairy free (+ I'd taken the Cyrex Blood test with positive reaction to dairy fat when I'd given up all dairy except butter, so it was totally knocking at me to do this). I also gave up chocolate/caffeine, a lot of processed foods, nightshades, then eggs ... I'm trying anything and everything I think will help if it'd make me a whole person again. I will NOT lie down and take this crap anymore. I deserve a better life. I d.e.s.e.r.v.e it! However, I must continue working for it, too, in how I think, eat, rest, exercise and play (need to work on that one). Some days are better than others.
The longer I tried paleo, the stricter I became. I am inspired by reading blogs - my blog roll is huge - it keeps me focused. I think Dh thinks I'm too focused - as do some of my neighbors and friends, but heck, I thought I had this time alone (with DH working out of state) to devote to recovery and I wanted to make good use of it. Like everything in life, nothing is black and white, and this time has been very gray. I'd say 50 Shades of Gray, but I haven't read the book, but the title about sums up my feelings.
Back to histamine. We have histamine receptors throughout our body in our mast cells, ie like you get a histamine reaction/welt to mosquito bites - but it's much huger than that, and way more complicated. We eat histamine foods. Some food have higher histamine than others. Some foods have other biogenic amines like putrecine, cadaverine, and tyramine, etc. Your body has enzymes to help degrade these foods; Or it doesn't, or they don't work well or fast enough, so it can build up in your body. This is NOT an easy fix like a gluten-free diet or paleo diet, which I now consider EASY. At the beginning it was shocking because I didn't know what the heck to eat, and I'm still working through it. Oh, I can have apples, my "favorite." FIGURES! Let me back up a minute, and tell you what I've 'been' eating. Keep in mind I don't like to cook, and do so for one (Dd is never home and if I do cook, she doesn't eat it anyway). So, here's a typical day's diet (seemed innocent enough to me):
-Steamed spinach frittata. (Fresh spinach has less histamine than cooked, but spinach is a no-no on the low histamine diet. Egg whites are high in histamine.) Yes, I gave up eggs mid-February. But I have incorporated egg yolks back in since I know I had antibodies to egg whites via the Enterolab stool test. My serum IgG tests through Genova indicated allergy to egg yolk, but I've decided to not believe in IgG tests. I have read conflicting information about their testing methods and results (like sending same blood samples under different names and getting completely different results). My dairy intolerance was not detected, so I believe in elimination diets.
-Banana (histamine liberator but can have one once in a while) I was eating them multiple times a day sometimes for the B6.
-Lettuce (good, no/low histamine.)
-Spinach (fresh has less histamine, and cooked has more)
-Tomatoes (fresh have less histamine than say paste or ketchup, which is more concetrated -- but I gave up tomatoes when I went nightshade free about 20 mos ago or so - but then I reintroduced for a while to see if my myxoid toe cyst-an arthritis symptom- would return and then I only had it sporadically - more on symptoms later.)
-Avocado (one whole one a day, sometimes two if I needed calories Ė figured it was low glycemic. Again, fresh is better, but high histamine. Never eat one w/bruises cause itís older = higher histamine.)
-Artichoke hearts (jarred, citric acid. Citrus has histamine. Artichokes are no/low histamine.)
-Bubbies sauerkraut (fermented food is high histamine)
-Canned smoked oysters, canned plain/smoked sardines or canned/foil envelope smoked tuna (canned/foiled food is old food. The older the food, the more histamine it has. Smoked is worse still.)
-Apple cider vinegar and/or lemon juice w/olive oil. Vinegars are high histamine, citrus is a histamine liberator. Olives are high in histamine, esp in red wine vinegar. Canned olives are old and high in histamine, too.
Berries: often strawberry (high histamine), raspberry (high histamine), blueberry (alkaloid), banana (histamine liberator) sprinkled with cinammon and nutmeg (high histamine) and some lemon juice (histamine liberator). Gloria Gilbere, former fibro-sufferer and author of I Was Poisoning My Body, which I haven't read YET, says blueberries have high alkaloids (article about phytochemicals: bit.ly/KsJUXM or a Gloria Gilbere's Youtube vid: bit.ly/GloriaNightshades ).
So there ya go: a nearly perfect HIGH HISTAMINE diet! Oh, once in a while I'd cheat and have an Udi's loaf, I mean coupla four pieces -they're small! of Udi's toast ... um, which has yeast (high histamine). Once in a while I'd make myself up a batch of marinated chicken or burgers and nosh on them throughout the week (leftovers are high in histamine - the longer it sits, the higher the histamine). The marinade recipe I got from Oprah's Rosie a long time ago: soy sauce, lemon juice and garlic. Of course I switched to San J wheat-free soy/tamari sauce after my CD dx in 06, but this has been a fave recipe. Well, you guessed it: the fermented soy is high histamine, along with the citrus. Garlic is still cool - yay?
What set off this new food intolerance discovery were my symptoms the last time I made burgers. I'd left the burger in the fridge defrosting probably too long. I got busy, I didn't feel like making them. Okay, really long, like 10 days. I marinated it w/the 'ushe' ingredients except subbing lime for lemon juice, and omg, they were the best burgers E.V.E.R. I made sliders and kept going back for more. My leg ached after. Well, I'd given up balsamic vinegar cause it made my leg ache. It always started in my left leg above my knee. It feels like a headache in my leg actually; like an aching bruise; like I had the start of my worse body fibro symptoms from years ago. If I were to keep eating enough of it, it'd travel to my right leg. Hmm, I got thinking. Remember Thanksgiving 2010 when I had an allergic reaction to taking a morning concoction/liver cleanse of liquid resveratrol/lemon juice? I awakened the next day with itchy legs, next morning I drank another 2c worth, and I awakened to hives on my legs, and the third day I drank it, I awakened with facial edema, throat closing, itchy hives/welts over my entire body? I wrote about it being either a histamine or sulfite reaction Ö I didnít know what to do with the info. Little did I realize THAT should have been looked at more closely.
Resveratrol comes from grapes which are older, condensed version of grapes, AND fermented = high histamine. In winter I struggle to drink water, which is supposed to help dilute histamine levels, too.
I remember telling you GG, that I felt gassy eating too many grapes. I was fermenting those grapes because I think I have low or no enzyme activity?! I can eat watermelon like nobodyís business without same effect. I remember telling you GG how I felt okay eating greens and meat, but couldnít do it for long. Now I know why I felt great on that ďdiet!Ē A LOT of people with this problem actually have IBS issues, which I do not, unless I eat too many grapes Ö or cherries, too, come to think of it (just gas, nothing else). I can easily eat one of those cartons from Samís Club of cherries, likely a pound or two. And it didnít always happen with cherries, but it did with too many grapes. So this is another reason fruit isnít so great for everybody, not just the fructose people.
When I eat Kalamata olives, I get left ankle swelling/edema. I remember visiting DH in Tulsa having been on my feet a long time moving furniture and cleaning the whole house (I'm sure I blogged around this time but I'm not going to go back and find it) all the while eating Kalamata olives/juice at home and in the car thinking how low-glycemic I was- by the time I drove the 90 mins to Tulsa BOTH ankles were stiff from fluid retention/edema. It was almost painful. I thought it was because Iíd been on my feet too long and sodium retention (remember, I eat potato chips with lots of sodium - no ankle swelling Ė maybe I like them so much is because they donít overtly effect me much like people who are either pulled toward or away from gluten/casein!).
When I went to FL on vacation I found I was able to eat potatoes (yay chips! Ha, no I didnít eat them Ė I ate FRIES! At this point I didnít care, I just wanted some FOOD! I even tried ketchup Ö having eaten fries w/out ketchup before I know it was the ketchup which made my heart about palpitate out of my chest. I also get anxiety. My depression is very low grade, and not something that goes away so itís hard for me to quantify.
So there you have some of my main nagging symptoms all wrapped up in a histamine bow: anxiety/depression, edema, palpitations, GI-gas, hives, and muscle headaches Iíll call them.
FWIW category: I got the doc to test my serum histamine levels but after I was eating low histamine. I had the nurse in a tizzy cause I also asked for a serum tryptase level which they didnít have the codes for but is indicated in the much worse problem called mastocytosis (having too many mast cells bit.ly/masto . THATíS a nightmare, so Iím not complaining about my self-dx histaminosis).
The day of the test in between the doctor appt and the actual blood test I ran to the grocery store to eat strawberries, grapes, pepperoni (aged meats are high histamine, nitrates and additives arenít good either), tamari sauce, and so on trying to get my level up; one day wasnít enough and it didnít even provoke any pain in me! Frustrating! WTH?! LOL. Both tests were normal. However, Iíve read in forums it doesnít matter, you go by symptoms (for the histaminosis, not the mastocytosis). The enzyme tests arenít available or even known about here in the States except by a few. Thereís a lab in the U.K., Spain, Germany that Iíve read about, maybe Switzerland. Thereís a lab in Quebec which will test one enzyme, the DAO, (but you really need to know about both so itíd dumb to do one).
I went to get my IgE allergy levels checked and was positive to grasses, and olive tree, equivocal to catfish which I never have eaten so donít care. I asked that doc to check everything, but one panel was crossed off. I asked the nurse why he didnít check it and she told me she accidentally did and that I was positive to the olive tree. Thank goodness I asked cause what if I hadnít? She was nice and didnít need to tell me, but Iím so glad she did. Apparently it wasnít part of the pkg and I didnít pay for it so I didnít need to know? That was $315 w/insurance. Histamine is not a food allergy per se, so you donít provoke an IgE response, though you can have IgE allergies, too, of course. Histamine is implicated in autoimmune disease, but Iím getting way ahead. I experimented with A LOT of salsa (can we say party in my mouth? :D) and corn chips (should be okay) last night. I gained a pound, and had slight heart palpitations. Histamine can make you gain weight, and I think my mother has it.
Iíve been having a hard time with this one mentally and physically. I know Iím all over the place and ahead of myself but Iíll explain and share more in future blog entries; this is my personal experience with it so far.
(bwa ha ha):
"Hey Girl. I think it's sexy when you ask the waiter a million questions about cross-contamination and take 20 minutes to give your order. You deserve to get exactly what you want."
Monday, April 30, 2012
I'm not crying as much, and I slept fairly well considering I'd been getting about 2-3 hrs/night the past two weeks. Had a nice, long talk w/you-know-who on Friday night and dragged some feelings out of him. Men. They think they have to shoulder the weight of the world on their shoulders. What an awesome responsibility they feel. That night he couldn't hear what I said, that we shoulder the world together. We're only human. He's enough.
I can sometimes find a chink in my Rock. These videos helped. It's what he needed to hear. I think it's the start of better days for him, and therefore our future. He now wants me on the Harley, too, so that's encouraging. It's really not healthy for a relationship to be separate. Bless his heart.
This is an important subject for a lot of people really. You-know-who grew up with shame. I grew up with the shame of obesity and feeling less than. Teach your children well. Try as I might have, I hope my child doesn't harbor shame. We all need a little counsel to keep us on track.
If you need to hear this, this is so excellent:
(both vids, in order, about 20mins each, so 40ish total)
from her blog bit.ly/JmdLzC , for us to remember:
"Wholehearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness. It means cultivating the courage, compassion, and connection to wake up in the morning and think, No matter what gets done and how much is left undone; I am enough.
Itís going to bed at night thinking, Yes, I am imperfect and vulnerable and sometimes afraid, but that doesnít change the truth that I am also brave and worthy of love and belonging."
You are enough. Me, too.
Thursday, April 26, 2012
MTHFR - it's both a gene and an enzyme. If you have a polymorphism in one of two known genes, your MTHFR enzyme won't work effectively. Implications for the following health issues are involved, and that's why you should know/care (think about your family medical history, too):
Addictions: smoking, drugs, alcohol
Depression in Post-Menopausal Women
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Esophageal Squamous cell carcinoma
Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia
Idiopathic male infertility
Congenital Heart Defects
Infant depression via epigenetic processes caused by maternal depression
Deficits in childhood cognitive development
Migraines with aura
Post-menopausal breast cancer
Type 1 Diabetes
Primary Closed Angle Glaucoma
Tetralogy of Fallot [congenital heart defect]
Decreased telomere length
Potential drug toxicities: methotrexate, anti-epileptics
Increased bone fracture risk in post-menopausal women
Differentiated Thyroid Carcinoma
Placental Abruption [ie miscarriage]
Myocardial Infarction (Heart Attack)
Nitrous Oxide Toxicity
Tight Anal Sphincters
Midline Defects (many are listed above)
Phew, right? I found info on Youtube about fibro and the MTHFR gene, so I immediately checked on my DNA results from 23andme test (blogged about testing here: bit.ly/o3Tg5n ). 23andme doesn't code their genes the same as the online info, so I had to decode it with help. Neither sister nor I have the polymorphism in either allele (yay and boo. boo because I was looking for an easy fibro fix/answer); and however, DH does have one gene polymorphism (boo).
If you carry MTHFR C677T or A1298C or a few more rare mutations; you can't convert dietary folate or recycle used folate. So no matter how much folate you take, you can't convert enough to be healthy.
Doctors don't routinely screen patients for this, so look at the list to see if it might behoove you to ask for the genetic test. I don't believe it's covered by insurance, but you could ask. It costs around $150 and could save your quality if not your life, which is well worth the cost.
Treatment is taking the correct form of folate, not some over-the-counter folic acid and other personalized to you B vitamins; and/or it might be to lower your folate intake. How do you do that? Reduce your processed foods/grains as folate is fortified in them, take note of your folate type in your multi-vitamin (it's likely NOT methyl-sourced as manufacturers prefer cheap sources), and make sure you take methyl-sourced folate. If you read the links, you'll find good information to take to your doctor. Ten to 50% of the population have some sort of mutation.
Awesome Source: www.MTHFR.net
Dr. Neil Rawlins' videos on youtube: bit.ly/DrRawlins
New Yahoo Chat: MTHFR basics here: bit.ly/yahooMTHFR ,
and treatment options here: bit.ly/yahooMTHFRtx
and the link that started my "methyl-tetra-hydro-folate reductase" studies (about fibro and MTHFR): short and sweet: bit.ly/It3cvx
and from a dental perspective: bit.ly/methylcycleinflammatio
I got my Spectracell ( www.spectracell.com/mnt/ ) results and I was low in serine (an amino acid I know not much about), omega-3s (haven't been using my fish oil but will), and GLUTATHIONE. This is actually a better report than my previous test two years ago bit.ly/IrKGRQ . You'd think for sure that I'd have that darned gene mutation having low GLUTATHIONE (again)... but really, it comes down to not eating ENOUGH fruit and veg. for my biology. I eat them daily, BUT I'm not eating ENOUGH (even w/a big a$$ salad most days). GLUTATHIONE = ANTIOXIDANTS. Hmm, make that veg, not fruit so much, and why? I'll leave that for the Mother Post. I love fruit. STILL reversed on copper/zinc which deserves its own blog post; which may have to do with B vitamins and methyl pathways (and you'd guess by the topic of this post, MTHFR ... maybe I decoded my alleles wrong - ha). Oh, to be a biochemist. Dr. friend says to ask my doc, "WHY would my glutathione be low?" and I never thought of that. I just assumed mine would be ...
I take note of Dr. Terry Wahls who recovered much of her quality of life from Multiple Sclerosis by going paleo and eating much veg. I bought her book ( amzn.to/IfcMD4 on behalf of helping an MS friend- I should blog about her!) years ago, and it's nice to see what a splash she's been making on the web via TED TALKS and Mercola, Mark's Daily Apple, etc. bit.ly/overcomingMS .
... I knew I needed to take N-A-C (for glutathione) two years ago, but for some reason I can't remember why, I never used it. I think it might be contra-indicated for another problem I might have (yes, I'll talk about it in the Mother Post if I ever get to it).
I'm not sleeping, I'm not eating much (that also has to do with the Mother Post). I'm a mess. I sent DH a card for our 31st anniversary on Monday for Wednesday, and the post office sent us a letter yesterday that mail OUT was destroyed in a postal car fire. The Vita-Mix lid wasn't on tight and I had to clean up green smoothie 'wallpaper' all over the kitchen :P. The dog diarrhea-d all over my master bedroom, bath and office yesterday as a fine howdy-doo doo. I ruined the wood floor in the office cleaning it up (one of the ones I just got refinished).
Edit: P.S. it likely IS covered by insurance!!! Check!
[deleted some stuff here, so the comments won't make sense if you're reading that far. sorry.]
"Out of adversity, comes opportunity." I will take it day by day, minute by minute right now and hope for the best.
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