Special Report IMHA
The Martial Art of Wellness
Volume 8 – April 2009
Welcome to this month’s BioNews. We must learn to free ourselves from the control that others exert over us. As we learn we become FREE, we become powerful. This pursuit of self defense in wellness, I call “The Martial Art of Wellness.” And as we practice we become Wellness Ninjas.
QUOTE OF THE MONTH
“ I firmly believe that if the whole materia medica as now being used could be sunk to the bottom of the sea, it would be all the better for mankind and all the worse for the fish. ”
~ Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes
THIS ISSUE’S TESTIMONIALS:
Within four months the symptoms were entirely gone
“ A few years back I was suffering from arthritis so bad that I had great difficulty getting into and out of my car. Since I was a “heavy duty” commuter this was a major problem. I heard about the Bio-Algae Concentrates and began taking them. Within four months the symptoms were entirely gone. ”
~ Newman P.
SPECIAL REPORT : Holistic Approach to a Deadly Disease – IMHA
by Russell Louie, BEng, RM of Optimum Choices.
The purpose of this article is not to introduce a “cure” for any one particular disease but to introduce a new paradigm in holistic pet care. I have chosen a deadly disease, Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anemia (IMHA) or Auto-Immune Hemolytic Anemia (AIHA) as an example. The Morris Animal Foundation states:
- 50% of dogs diagnosed with this disease die within two weeks of diagnosis
- IMHA dogs have nearly an 80% mortality rate
I hope no reader has ever had to face this disease. For simplicity, henceforth, Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anemia (IMHA) and Auto-Immune Hemolytic Anemia (AIHA) will be collectively referred to as IMHA. The holistic principles discussed in this article apply to all symptoms and any disease, not just IMHA.
With IMHA, red blood cells are not manufactured at the bone marrow level, requiring frequent blood transfusions to keep the dog’s hematocrit level (HCT) in the normal range (40-45). In addition, the body’s own immune system is seemingly attacking itself by destroying the remaining good red blood cells thus lowering the blood cell count. Prednisone, prednisolone, cyclosporine and azathioprine are the most commonly prescribed drugs. While these drugs do suppress the body’s immune system from attacking itself, they do nothing to regenerate the red blood cells that are being destroyed, resulting in degenerative anemia.
Typical allopathic research for IMHA focuses on how to stop the body from destroying its own red blood cells and how to stimulate new red blood cells at the bone marrow level. While both treatments are needed to handle the acute symptoms in order to save a dog’s life, is this the ultimate answer? Do scientists really know all the nutrients, organs, glands and processes involved in producing red blood cells? Is it really a foreign invader stopping the body from producing red blood cells? From my holistic perspective, we don’t need these answers.
Back to Basics
Nature has dictated what nutrients are needed to manufacture red blood cells. Nature has also given the necessary knowledge to the body’s glands and organs and encoded this knowledge in their DNA. So, why not holistically support the body’s natural process of manufacturing red blood cells by supplying super nutrition to wake up the brain and balance all the glands and organs, then let the body’s own natural ability to heal take over? One can do this, not with supplements that mostly treat symptoms, specific glands and organs but with whole food products that nourish the whole body.
The following are based on my research, experiences helping with IMHA and observations based on 56+ years of holistic living experience. This is not meant to replace or substitute for proper veterinary care.
Bio-Algae Concentrates (BAC)
During the 1970’s in the former U.S.S.R., their chicken, rabbit and mink populations (all cash crops) were beset with epidemic of cancers. In 1973, Dr. Michael Kiriac was tasked by the Moldova Academy of Sciences to research nutritional ways to prevent cancer in animals. Current research at that time pointed to the promise of algae, as a nutritional tool in preventing cancer. Out of the 25,000+ species of algae on Earth, he chose more than 1,000 different species to research. Bio-algae Concentrates (BAC) is the generic name given to the research algae mixture that Dr. Michael Kiriac used on mice, rats, chicken, rabbits, mink, pigs and other livestock. After 20 years of research he identified the following BAC benefits:
- 50% of diseased chickens (including Marek disease, a type of cancer) were put back into production
- Ability to raise disease-free (including cancer) chickens without the use of antibiotics and hormones
- 20% overall productivity increase in chickens
- 21% increased weight of chickens
- Increased strength of eggshell and larger eggs
- Better tasting eggs and meat
- Prevention of cancer in rabbits
- Shinier and longer fur in rabbits
- Increased survival rate of newborns
- Increased fertility-larger litters
- Calmer moods
- Prevention of viral and bacterial infections—overall healthier animals
- Dangerously low white blood cell counts (due to leukemia) was increased
- Regeneration of bone marrow, blood, spinal fluids and liver cells
It is this ability of BAC to regenerate bone marrow and blood cells that is most relevant to IMHA. Dr. Kiriac found research by Chinese scientists documenting that phycocyanin stimulates hematopoesis (creation of blood), emulating the hormone erythropoetin (EPO). EPO is produced by healthy kidneys and regulates bone marrow stem cell production of red blood cells. They claim phycocyanin regulated white blood cell production, even when bone marrow stem cells are damaged by toxic chemicals or radiation.1
Chlorophyll is sometimes called “green blood” because of its similarity to the hemoglobin molecule found in human blood cells. In fact, both are constructed of almost identical molecular structure called pyrrole rings, and both substances are chemically known as “porphyrin pigments” by scientists. The difference is that chlorophyll contains a magnesium ion at its core, while hemoglobin contains an iron molecule. Magnesium imparts a green color to the chlorophyll molecule and is involved in synthesis of other materials, while iron gives hemoglobin a red coloration and changes the function of the porphyrin molecule to respiration and breakdown of materials. There are many reasons why cereal grass and other dark green plants can be considered “blood-building” foods. The vitamins and minerals in cereal grass are essential to the synthesis and function of the components of healthy blood. It does appear, however, that small amounts of the digestive products of chlorophyll may stimulate the synthesis of either heme or globin or both in animals and humans.2
Since 2003, we have dealt with over 65+ cases of IMHA. We used a whole food product, called BioPreparation, containing the same four microalgae in Dr. Kiriac’s Bio-Algae Concentrates (BAC) formula. One dog, due to have her puppies, fell over and got very weak for 3 days. The owner took her dog to the vet and she was diagnosed with anemia. Her blood count (HCT) was only 13 (40-45 is normal) and she lost her puppies. They gave her a blood transfusion and took her back a week later for a hysterectomy, because the vet diagnosed a bad infection. About 10 days after the operation, she fell over again, her blood count (HCT) was down to 8 and they gave the dog another transfusion. While the dog was there, they did a bone marrow biopsy and found no red blood cells were being made. After 4 days, and $7500 later, the vet diagnosed Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anemia (IMHA)-Red Blood Cell Aplasia. The vet said the blood count was up to 14 but the dog could not go home and would probably die there. At that point the dog was on 7 different immune suppressants. The dog was bloated and had no strength or energy. She could not even go down the stairs by herself. The dog was slowly weaned off all drugs but the Prednisone. She started to act a little better but they still could not get her blood count above 17. Her liver was enlarged and her body was full of fluids.
Fortunately, the owner started using a nutritional whole food product, BioPreparation, along with a natural diet of chicken or beef, rice and carrots mixed with seaweed, garlic, acidophilus, and flax seed oil. The dog slowly recovered and is still doing great today: full of energy, running up and down the Colorado mountains, eating well and her gums are pinker than ever. It has been 5 years now since her IMHA diagnosis.
Another dog with IMHA needed CPR because he collapsed and his heart stopped. They were able to revive him and gave him his tenth blood transfusion for IMHA. His lowest HCT was about 8. They gave him BioPreparation and he responded wonderfully. He began drinking water almost immediately. His HCT level remained stable at 32, when in the past it had been no higher than 16, even with blood transfusions. He was discharged from the hospital after 10 days. The dog’s HCT returned into the normal range at 45. He is still on the immune suppressants and steroids but they are working on weaning him off these medications.
Out of the 65+ IMHA cases we have dealt with, at least 26 dogs (conservatively 40%) are still alive. I suspect a number of the remaining cases are still alive but unfortunately, most people treat whole food products just like supplements, in that they only give them as long as their pet has symptoms. When the pet totally recovers, they discontinue the product and never get back with us. To respect the privacy of the guardians and sensitivity of the subject, we have not followed up.
How did a nutritional whole food product accomplish all this? – it didn’t. BioPreparation contains four microalgae, that synergistically supplies super nutrients to the body at the cellular level (microalgae are one-celled organisms) rather than trying to “fix” the red blood cells, bone marrow and immune system with a specific drug or a supplement. BioPreparation simply supplied the body with the super nutrients of Vitamin A, B-complex, C, D, E and K, essential fatty acids of Omega 3, Omega 6, Omega 9, Gamma Linoleic Acid (GLA content is similar to early mother’s milk), Alpha-Linolenic Acids (ALAs), Dihomogamma-Linolenic Acid (DGLA), Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and more fatty acids, over 4,000 enzymes, 10 essential amino acids plus 10 more, all known trace minerals and elements, phytonutrients and thousands of other nutrients so the body could resume producing red blood cells normally. BioPreparation is not a solution for IMHA but a holistic way to activate the body’s own natural ability to heal.
New Paradigm in Holistic Pet Care
BioPreparation contains superfood ingredients (specifically abundant antioxidants in the form of mixed carotenoids from its four microalgae) that can awaken the master gland in the brain, which controls all the other glands and organs of the body and, of course, red blood cell production. When the master gland (pituitary), pineal and hypothalamus in the brain are synergistically working together, the body is holistically balanced and can return to wellness. Since no one knows exactly why IMHA occurs, boosting and balancing the whole body, with a whole food product, is the most holistic approach to regenerate red blood cells. BioPreparation did not treat the symptoms or IMHA disease but activated the animal’s own natural ability to heal.
We have used this same holistic paradigm of feeding super nutrition to the body (from a whole food product), waking up and balancing the glands in the brain, to nutritionally help pets with Symmetrical Lupoid Onychodystrophy (SLO, another auto-immune disease), seizures, cancer, chronic renal failure (CRF), allergies, irritable bowel symptoms, diabetes, lipomas (fatty tumors) and many other imbalances in the body. When the endocrine and immune systems are holistically balanced, everything works like it should and symptoms are not needed. Now that is a new paradigm in holistic pet care!
Optimum Choices is a holistic wellness company with over 80 years of holistic experience, specializing in animals. They do not sell any isolated vitamins, herbal products, extracts, concentrates or natural remedies but only whole food products. Visit their website, www.OptimumChoices.com.
- Zhang Cheng-Wu, et. al. Effects of polysaccharide and phycocyanin from spirulina on peripheral blood and hematopoietic system of bone marrow in mice. Second Asia-Pacific Conf. Ibid, April, 1994. (Source: www.themagicisbac.com/page10-01-05.html)
- All the above research was taken from www.TheMagicisBAC.com
REALITY CHECK ( Demythifying ORAC / Antioxidant Value )
The ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) unit has become a popular and accepted industry standard for measuring antioxidants. As a result of an increased awareness of the damaging effects of free radicals, everywhere you turn someone has a high antioxidant supplement they want you to buy. They range from supplements containing vitamins C and E and the trace mineral selenium (give or take a few nutrients) to supercharged juices made from exotic berries, like acai berries. The prices are anywhere from about $3.00 for a small piece of chocolate all the way up to $90.00 for a bottle of juice.
This month I want to tackle this “somewhat myth” that ORAC has become, and that so many company use to claim the value of their supplement or juice. In essence I want you to understand that ORAC value is a very small factor in total wellness, in total health and even in total antioxidant power. It is critical that we not be taken advantage off by so many company that use ORAC as a comparison factor.
The spin goes like this:
“A laboratory test known as ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) developed by USDA researchers rates the antioxidant levels of fruits and vegetables. It ranks our Ningxia wolfberry, also known as the Goji berry as the best antioxidant food in the world.”
So you are suppose to believe that the higher the ORAC, the better it is for you, and in the next sentence; if high ORAC veggies and fruits are good for you, then so must be our juice or berry, right?
If it sounds too easy to be true, maybe it is not true… So if you can get out of this article that eating a diet rich in mix fruits and vegetables is better than eating one or two supplements of high ORAC value, then you have understood the issue, and I am happy with that.
Let’s take a closer look at what ORAC values really mean, and – more importantly – what their limitations are.
What is ORAC?
It was developed by the scientists at the National Institute on Aging in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland, but this method is not approved by the NIH. A wide variety of foods have been tested using this methodology, with certain spices, berries and legumes rated very highly. Correlation between the high antioxidant capacity of fruits and vegetables, and the positive impact of diets high in fruits and vegetables, is believed to play an important role in the free-radical theory of aging. The ORAC antioxidant test combines a measure of both the time an antioxidant takes to react and also its antioxidant capacity in a given test tube sample. In most cases, it is expressed as per 100 grams of sample. Currently, all testing for ORAC values is done by Brunswick Laboratories under a grant from the USDA.
It sounds simple, yes; the higher the ORAC value, the more potent the antioxidant. Unfortunately, the reality is more complex.
The many drawbacks and problems with ORAC scoring
- Only antioxidant activity against peroxyl radicals is measured. The original ORAC test was developed to detect antioxidant capacity against one type or radical; peroxyl radicals, while there are many other types of free radicals. In other words, an antioxidant that is effective against non-peroxyl radicals may have a low ORAC score and be ruled out needlessly. Carotenoids are excellent examples. Beta-carotene are highly effective at quenching singlet oxygen radicals, yet perform poorly against peroxyl radicals. And alpha-carotene which is an even more efficient free radical quencher is not even rated.
- The ORAC tests are performed in a laboratory. Not all antioxidants present in a test tube can be absorbed and utilized by the human body. It doesn’t matter how high the value is in a test tube, if it doesn’t work in the body, it has no value to you. That kind of test offers no guarantee that a high ORAC food or supplement will be effective in a real body in real life. We also know that bioavailability is limited, for example with separation; or the active compound(s) may be broken down or otherwise modified even to the point of having negative health results instead of positive.
- The nature of the damaging reaction is not characterized and there is no evidence that free radical is involved in many of the targeted free-radical reactions. When it comes to good health and preventing disease, the highest scoring foods aren’t necessarily the best ones. High ORAC scores can be misleading. Many antioxidants with lower scores have health effects specific to particular organs or tissues. For example, the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin are useful for preventing age-related macular degeneration (AMD), yet spinach, which is an excellent source of these compounds, has a low ORAC value, whereas an equivalent amount of raw blueberries is much higher.
- Processing may alter ORAC values. Antioxidant activity can be lost via heating, chemical treatments and/or prolonged storage. For example, alkali treatment of cocoa powder can cut antioxidant activity in half. Broccoli antioxidants can be lost during cooking. The problem is that most producers of high-ORAC products don’t have to tell you when the product was tested. A “superfruit” juice tested prior to retort sterilization and bottling may have a different value by the time it’s distributed at the retail level.
- ORAC values are not yet tied to clinical outcomes. Epidemiological studies have shown that vegetable and fruit intake are linked to reduced risk of various degenerative diseases. We do not, however, know what a “good” ORAC score is. Currently, scientists recommend consuming the equivalent of 3,000 – 5,000 ORAC units/day, but it would be a mistake to assume that a single serving of any one “superfood” or supplement is all that’s needed to remain healthy.
- The relationship between ORAC and long term health benefits is not verified, while a high ORAC food may even have deleterious effects. Even if we assume that the tested ORAC figures are accurate, it is important to understand that having a high ORAC value in and of itself does not confer any particular advantage. For example, one study on the effects of eating grapes and raisins was recently conducted in human volunteers. This 4 week study found an increase in serum antioxidant activity over time, but also recorded “significant non positive changes” immediately post-consumption, probably due to carbohydrate-induced postprandial oxidation. High blood sugar (hyperglycemia) is itself a trigger for oxidative stress (via the production of superoxide), so chronic consumption of high-ORAC/high-sugar foods or juices may also contribute to the problem that people consuming them are trying to solve!
- The many different antioxidants target the many different free radicals. Having an ORAC value of 17,000 that targets one group of free radicals leaves you vulnerable to the ones not targeted. Different antioxidants have affinity and/or work in different areas of the body. In other words, having 5,000 ORAC units working in the brain isn’t going to help you much if you are dying of liver cancer. Beta-carotene, or Gingko biloba, for example, works in the brain and cardiovascular system, whereas curcumin likes the colon, and silymarin the liver.
- ORAC value tells only a very small part of the story. Saying that pycnogenol is 20 times more powerful than vitamin C, for example, is meaningless when it comes to scurvy. In that regard, vitamin C is infinitely more powerful than pycnogenol. Or to say that mangosteen is 10 times stronger than noni (one of the inaccurate claims that we’ve seen a number of times in the past couple of weeks) is also meaningless. When it comes to raising nitric oxide levels, noni is infinitely stronger. Mangosteen doesn’t do that. On the other hand, mangosteen appears to have much stronger antipathogenic activity than noni.
- There is an upper limit to the benefit that can be derived from antioxidants. It has been observed that the maximum number of ORAC units the body seems to be able to handle in a day is around 4,000 units. Antioxidant capacity of the blood is tightly regulated, Taking 30,000 ORAC units at one time, as reputedly occurs with certain supplements like mangosteen (if you were to believe some claims) would not be more beneficial than taking a fifth of that amount. The excess is simply excreted by the kidneys, while there is a body of research that shows that excess of certain antioxidants many lead to disease.
- We also know that there are many co-dependent relationships between nutrients that can only be met when the nutrients are available together as molecular units in their natural food state. It is a full-spectrum of many antioxidants that can covers the entire body and the whole spectrum of free radicals and not just a separate or isolate. Additionally there are many known and many yet unknown benefits to mixing antioxidants; for example, Zeaxanthin and lutein reinforce each other, Curcumin and nutrients in green tea reinforce each other.
Whole functioning antioxidants can only be achieve with eating a mixed diet of whole fruits and vegetables that you can be sure carries the co-dependent nutrients that the antioxidants need. ORAC value by itself presents a very incomplete picture. Taking more than three to five thousand units a day of the same antioxidant is overkill. Promoting super high numbers in advertising is like a fishing shop trying to convince you to buy a nuclear submarine to go fishing with. In other words, it’s not so simple as “high ORAC” = “good.” Yes ORAC is a tool for making comparisons between foods and nutrients, and helps us learn about the relationships between antioxidant intake and health. But for most functional foods and supplements, it’s just a marketing game. Right now, with what the science supports, you are better off choosing from a variety of high-ORAC whole fresh foods.
BioSuperfood and it’s Antioxidant Connection
BioSuperfood contains dozens of naturally occurring antioxidants, including some of the most potent family on earth. But more importantly, when consuming BioSuperfood, we say that it “fires” the antioxidants in your ordinary foods by increasing your capacity to assimilate their many antioxidants.. Read more at The Magic is BAC
BioSuperfood is an extraordinary ally food that will expedite the return to balance and health. Make sure to get your copy of the newly released book AWAKENING THE GENIUS WITHIN