6 Things Anyone with an Autoimmune Disease Wants You to Know

March is National Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month and with my having it and it being an Autoimmune Disease I will be posting blog posts this month centering around MS and Autoimmune Diseases.

6 Things Anyone with an Autoimmune Disease Wants You to Know

By Dr. Chad Larson, NMD, DC, CCN, CSCS, Advisor and Consultant on Clinical Consulting Team for Cyrex Laboratories


With over 100 autoimmune diseases identified and about 50 million Americans currently suffering from at least one of them according to the American Autoimmune Related Disease Association, it’s likely that we all know at least one person leading a life complicated by an autoimmune condition. While autoimmune disease and all its variations can be complex to understand, there are many commonalities among them—and your friends and family who are currently living a life complicated by autoimmune issues would love for you to understand what they are dealing with. They want you to know so you have a sense of what they’re facing, how they handle it, why they feel the way they do and how they approach their health. Not only will this allow you to be an invaluable part of their support system, but you just might be able to help keep them healthy.

Here are six important facts about autoimmune disease that every sufferer wants their friends and family to understand:

  1. Autoimmune disease is not just a women’s health issue – Although women account for almost 80 percent of the population diagnosed with autoimmune disease, men can fall victim, too. Even if just 20 percent of those suffering from autoimmune disease are men, that would still mean 10 million plus American men suffer from autoimmune disease – hardly a figure to simply brush off.


  1. Sometimes they just need to rest – Fatigue is a common symptom of autoimmune disease. Sometimes they just don’t feel well and need some time to reboot. It can be frustrating for loved ones to have their plans broken or altered due to the fatigue an autoimmune disease sufferer feels. Unfortunately, recurring bouts of fatigue are par for the course for millions of those dealing with an autoimmune disease. The extreme lack of energy can impact everything from the ability to carry out household chores, to weekend dates, to vacation plans. People battling autoimmunity feel it’s important for supporters to understand that fatigue is a very real symptom, one that can strike at any time.


  1. Management is key – Sadly, there is no cure for autoimmune disease. However, symptoms can be minimized through proactive management, once the disorder is properly identified. Functional medicine, which offers invaluable methods for diagnosing and treating autoimmune disease, focuses on causes in addition to symptoms. This system is based on an understanding of the dynamic way our genes interact with environment, and goes beyond simply treating diseases based on their label. Prioritizing sleep, getting regular exercise, and managing nutrition and stress are all a part of proactive functional medicine.


  1. One autoimmune disease often translates to more – About 25 percent of patients with one autoimmune disease are likely to develop additional autoimmune diseases. This is because an immune system that begins attacking its own cells in the first place is a confused system, likely to continue the pattern in different areas of the body when falsely recognizing healthy cells as harmful. This makes management all the more important, as it becomes a preventative measure in addition to a proactive treatment. The lifestyle vigilance that people with autoimmunity need to maintain to manage their disease can sometimes be seen as overkill or be difficult for others to comprehend, but it is important to understand what is at risk for any individual with an autoimmune disease.


  1. Diet and nutrition matter – Food, additives and even preparation are proven to affect autoimmune response. There are a few key aggravators known to cause inflammation and symptomatic flare-ups for those with autoimmune disease. Gluten, sugar, dairy, mold, mercury and antibiotics are among the many immune irritants to trigger autoimmune response. However, they do not stand alone. Individuals are unique in their genetic makeup; those suffering from an autoimmune condition have varied sensitivities and reactions to different foods, chemicals and environmental elements, which can also impact autoimmune response. Cyrex Laboratories, a clinical laboratory specializing in functional immunology and autoimmunity, offers advanced, innovative tests designed to detect and monitor autoimmune reactivities and their possible triggers. People suffering from autoimmunity often get evaluated with comprehensive tests like the Array 10 – Multiple Food Immune Reactivity Screen™ which evaluates immune reactions to foods, raw, cooked and modified, food enzymes, lectins and artificial food additives.


  1. They must protect their children – As you now understand, autoimmune disease can be genetic or developed. Children of sufferers are genetically at risk for developing autoimmune disease in any form, regardless of the specific disease that their parent may have. Likewise, they are at risk for developing an autoimmune disease from environmental, lifestyle and food-related factors regardless of their parents’ history. Parents with autoimmune disease can sometimes seem over-protective with their children as they strive to head off the autoimmunity that they suffer from.

A significant element of leading a healthy life for those who suffer from autoimmune disorders is found in the support they receive from friends and family. As with any disease or illness, compassion goes a long way. Knowledge is everyone’s best tool.


Dr. Chad Larson, NMD, DC, CCN, CSCS, Advisor and Consultant on the Clinical Consulting Team for Cyrex Laboratories. Dr. Larson holds a Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine degree from Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine and a Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Southern California University of Health Sciences. He is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist and a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. He particularly pursues advanced developments in the fields of endocrinology, orthopedics, sports medicine and environmentally-induced chronic disease.


FDA/Kratom Scare

WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 7, 2018 – Four of the world’s leading kratom researchers today called on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to cease the agency’s scientifically unsupported attacks on the coffee-like herb kratom. The scientists strongly believe that the current body of credible research on the actual effects of kratom demonstrates that it is not dangerously addictive, nor is it similar to “narcotics like opioids” with respect to “addiction” and “death” as stated by the FDA in its public advisories and subsequent warnings. It is the scientists’ position that a ban on kratom could result in a “serious public health threat” as consumers are pushed to dangerous alternatives in the black market, while at the same time halting much needed scientific research on the risks and benefits of kratom and its alkaloids.

The four kratom experts who organized today’s news conference and were not paid to participate in it. The scientists are: Marc T. Swogger, Ph.D., associate professor of psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center; Oliver Grundmann, Ph.D., clinical associate professor, College of Pharmacy, University of Florida; Paula N. Brown, Ph.D., director of applied research, BC Institute of Technology, Canada Research chair, Phytoanalytics and adjunct professor of biology, University of British Columbia; and Dr. Jack Henningfield, vice president of research, Health Policy and Abuse Liability, at PinneyAssociates, and adjunct professor of Behavioral Biology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Instead of a de facto ban on kratom, the scientists urged the promotion of good manufacturing practices (GMP) complying to FDA standards, as is the case with other widely available supplements in the United States.

The following are the statements of the four experts:

Science suggests removing kratom from market would be a risk, not benefit, to public health —Marc T. Swogger, Ph.D., associate professor of psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center

– Risks associated with scheduling and loss of access

– Contrary to the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis

“We have science-based objections to the scheduling of kratom under the Controlled Substances Act. The existing science indicates that many of the millions of people in the U.S. who use kratom rely on it as a lifeline away from potentially deadly opioids. People use kratom to ease opioid withdrawal and to manage acute and chronic pain. Scheduling kratom would remove a valuable pain treatment option for millions, leading to greater opioid use with the likely consequences of increasing dangerous opioid dependence and overdose deaths.”

“Our objection to the scheduling of kratom is supported by data from four national scientific surveys conducted in the past two years, as well as decades of information from Southeast Asia, where this plant has been widely used as a safer alternative to opioids for more than a century. We cannot say that kratom is harmless for everyone, nor can we say that we know everything there is to know about the plant; rigorous, well-controlled studies are necessary. At this juncture, however, there is no high-quality evidence to indicate that kratom is a serious public health threat, and much evidence to suggest that banning it would be.”

“If the government fails to seriously consider the unintended consequences of banning kratom, they will be abdicating their duty to protect the safety of consumers – the expressed purpose of the enactment of the CSA by the U.S. Congress. Neglecting the available science and scheduling kratom are exactly what one would do if their aim was to worsen the opioid crisis.”

The FDA has pointed to 44 deaths over the last decade in the U.S. as their basis for concern, while the actual role of kratom in these deaths is speculative — Oliver Grundmann, Ph.D., clinical associate professor, College of Pharmacy, University of Florida

– Speculative; lack of causality for deaths involving kratom

– Differentiation of mode of action for kratom alkaloids from opioids; do not cause respiratory depression upon binding the same opioid receptors

“It is our strongly held belief that the claims that kratom has caused the deaths of all or even most of the 44 individuals cited by the FDA cannot be supported by any reasonable scientific or medical standard. Unlike overdose deaths that are rightly attributed to classical opioids, which reliably cause respiratory depression and death at high doses, the fatalities that the FDA lists as having been associated with kratom include deaths with a wide variety of apparent causes in people suffering from various diseases and/or taking other substances, thus allowing for no conclusive determination of the causative agent(s) responsible for deaths.”

“The FDA used a computer simulation, the PHASE model, to justify classifying Kratom and its major alkaloids, mitragynine and 7-OH mitragynine as opioids. Using a computational model alone is not sound science and fails to consider the additional scientific literature that has reported a distinct difference in how the alkaloids in kratom interact with the same opioid receptors in the brain. In isolated receptors and animals alike, the alkaloids presented with different effects from that of classical opioids like morphine or heroin, primarily not presenting with potentially fatal respiratory depression at higher doses.”

Publicly available research documents illustrate kratom has a long history of acceptably safe consumer use — Paula N. Brown, Ph.D., director of applied research, BC Institute of Technology, Canada Research chair, Phytoanalytics and adjunct professor of biology, University of British Columbia

– Import advisory of February 2014 by FDA identifies kratom as dietary ingredient

– History of safety for traditional use and modern use for pain relief

– Regulation as a dietary ingredient means compliance with Good Manufacturing Practices

“The FDA issued an import alert in February 2016 that stated, ‘Kratom is a botanical that qualifies as a dietary ingredient under section 201(ff)(1) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the Act) [21 U.S.C. 321(ff)(1)].’ When marketed as a dietary ingredient, FDA also considers kratom to be a new dietary ingredient under section 413(d) of the Act [21 U.S.C. 350b(d)] because, to the best of the agency’s knowledge, there is no information demonstrating that this substance was marketed as a dietary ingredient in the United States before October 15, 1994.”

“So while we can argue whether FDA’s consideration of kratom as a New Dietary Ingredient is substantiated or not, the focus should be on compliance with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) to ensure the public has access to products that are not adulterated with opioids (e.g., fentanyl, carfentanil, and other morphine-derived products), spiked with concentrated amounts of mitragynine and 7-OH mitragynine that are not consistent with levels in historical products and are tested for microbials to meet purity specifications. We agree that these concerns should be eliminated with a single kratom-based product regulatory standard that would protect both kratom manufacturers and consumers.”

“Documented literature demonstrates widespread use of kratom leaves for centuries; traditionally used as an energizer, relaxant, and to relieve stress and/or minor aches and pain (Suwanlert 1975; Watanebe et al., 1997; Vicknasingam et al., 2010, Adkins, 2011; Stolt et al., 2014; Brown et al. 2017). Kratom has also been increasingly used as a natural remedy to improve mood and quality of life and as substitutes for prescription and illicit opioids for managing pain, as shown in the recent four published surveys. The current scientific research suggests that kratom provides some pain relief without the dangerous and potentially deadly respiratory suppression induced by classical opioid medications. Risk assessments must rely on laboratory, clinical, and epidemiological evidence including the four national surveys of kratom use and other federal survey data and not the non-validated computer model referenced by the FDA in its February 6th Advisory.”

“Rather than foster an illicit and dangerous kratom market, the FDA could protect the American public by appropriate regulation of kratom, as the FDA’s Office of Dietary Supplements has been working toward. This could provide consumers and health professionals with the information to help guide safe use, and ensure that lawfully marketed products meet the same standards as other natural and dietary products relied upon by American consumers.”

The federal government should be encouraging additional research into the potential therapeutic benefits of kratom, while ensuring that the products available are not adulterated — Dr. Jack Henningfield, vice president of research, Health Policy and Abuse Liability, at PinneyAssociates, and adjunct professor of Behavioral Biology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

– Scheduling would stymie research

– Possibility of breakthrough in pain and addiction treatment

– Need alternate regulatory pathways – drug model too costly for non-patentable plant

“In the report issued on November 1, 2017 by the President’s Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis, where the Commission strongly supported research and development of alternatives to opioids for pain management, the powerful conclusion offered was that ‘[F]irst, individuals with acute or chronic pain must have access to non-opioid pain management options.’ The available science is clear that kratom, although having effects on opioid receptors in the brain, is distinct from classical opioids (e.g. morphine, heroin, oxycodone, etc.) in its chemistry, biological effects, and origin (kratom is a tree in the coffee family, not the opium poppy family).”

“The possibility that extracts of kratom and/or new medicines that are similar to kratom’s active ingredients might serve as breakthroughs in pain relieving medicines that are so desperately needed, should not be ignored. However, this latter path will not be a rapid one, since the average time and cost of new drug development is more than 10 years and 2.5 billion dollars. Placing kratom into Schedule I of the CSA will also have a profound and pervasive chilling effect on this needed additional research.”

“The assertion that scheduling recommendations can be based on claims of deaths ‘associated with kratom’ rather than deaths ‘caused by Kratom’ is not, in our judgement, either scientifically valid nor the standard that was contemplated by the U.S. Congress for scheduling of any substances, and would appear to be a significant overreach of the regulatory powers of the FDA and DEA beyond the currently established, rigorous, and clearly limited eight factors set forth by CSA for scheduling a substance.”

“We encourage you to support efforts to ensure continued lawful access to kratom, guide balanced regulation by the FDA, and facilitate research, thereby protecting and not harming public health.”

MEDIA CONTACT:  Max Karlin, (703) 276-3255 or mkarlin@hastingsgroup.com.

EDITOR’S NOTE:  For more information, go to bit.ly/kratomscience, where a streaming audio recording of today’s news event will be available online as of 4 p.m. ET/1 p.m. PT on March 7, 2018. Limited and unrestricted support for this news event is being provided by the nonprofit People Plants Health.

Parkinson Disease

The American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) announces today a collaboration with Smart Patients, an online support site for patients and caregivers, to create a new Parkinson’s disease (PD) community where people impacted by PD can join the community for free to share, interact, and learn from each other in a safe, supportive environment. This network extends APDA’s resources to help those affected by PD no matter where they are located to live life to the fullest and connect to others who have extensive experience with the disease.

We are thrilled with our partnership with Smart Patients to launch this community. This network is designed for people with PD, care partners, and family members,” explains Robin Kornhaber, APDA Vice President of Programs and Patient Services. “This innovative opportunity will further a dialogue to nurture the PD community, provide socialization, education, and critical access to information – and will allow us to expand our reach across the country.”

Smart Patients believes that patients and caregivers are the most underutilized resource in medicine. By partnering with Smart Patients, APDA is empowering people with Parkinson’s to improve care for themselves and others.

We are proud to work with the APDA to connect people with Parkinson’s with one another. Community can provide peace of mind through social and emotional support, not to mention those practical tips patients and families learn through direct experience,” said Roni Zeiger, MD, CEO of Smart Patients.

The PD community is invited to visit the site through the following two links: https://www.apdaparkinson.org/resources-support/smart-patients/  or www.smartpatients.com/apda. Individuals can join the community by sharing their email address and setting up a free personal account. Once the account is confirmed participants will have access to information, resources, and be able to participate in community conversations on topics of interest.

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive neurological disorder affecting more than one million people in the United States. Approximately 60,000 people are newly diagnosed each year. Onset commonly occurs after the age of 60, however up to ten percent will receive a diagnosis before the age of 50. Parkinson’s is characterized by motor problems including slowness of movement, rigidity, and tremor with balance and gait problems sometimes occurring later in the course of illness. Some people may also experience a decrease in facial expression, low voice volume, small handwriting, and difficulty with fine motor movements. A number of non-motor symptoms are associated with Parkinson’s, including fatigue, anxiety, depression, and sleep disturbance. It is important to understand that symptoms vary from person to person.

Contact: Stephanie Paul | 800-223-2732 | SPaul@apdaparkinson.org | www.apdaparkinson.org

About the American Parkinson Disease Association:
The American Parkinson Disease Association (APDA) is the largest grassroots network dedicated to fighting Parkinson’s disease (PD) and works tirelessly to assist the more than 1 million Americans with PD  live life to the fullest in the face of this chronic, neurological disorder. Founded in 1961, APDA has raised and invested more than $170 million to provide outstanding patient services and educational programs, elevate public awareness about the disease, and support research designed to unlock the mysteries of PD and ultimately put an end to this disease. To join us in the fight against Parkinson’s disease and to learn more about the support APDA provides nationally through our network of Chapters and Information & Referral (I&R) Centers, as well as our national Research Program and Centers for Advanced Research, please visit us at www.apdaparkinson.org

About Smart Patients:
Smart Patients is an online community where patients and their families affected by a variety of illnesses learn from each other about treatments, challenges, and how it all fits into the context of their experience. While providing patients with safe and high quality peer support, we help the healthcare system learn from patients in order to serve them bette


First General Surgeon Commissioned Under Navy’s New Medical Initiative



By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Latrice Jackson, Navy Recruiting District St. Louis Public Affairs

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (NNS) — The first General Surgeon to be commissioned under Navy Recruiting Command’s new Medical Officer Top 5 initiative was officially sworn into the Navy Reserve Aug. 18.

Dr. John Wieland, a general surgeon from Bloomington, Illinois, took the oath of office in front of his family at the Illinois Capitol Building, becoming one of the first physicians to answer the Navy’s call for reserve doctors in select medical specialties.

“As a practicing general surgeon for almost 25 years, I believe I can make a contribution to the health care of the men and women in the Navy who deserve the highest quality of care available,” said Wieland.

The Medical Officer Top 5 program was established in February to help fill the shortage of specific medical specialties in the Navy’s Reserve Medical Corps. Letters were sent out to medical professionals across the country looking for orthopedic surgeons, general surgeons, anesthesiologists, oral and maxillofacial surgeons, and perioperative nurses.

“The whole idea of the shortage of surgeons in my specialty really caught my attention and that was really the appeal of the [request] actually, that there was a need,” said Wieland.

Chief Hospital Corpsman Ariel Ampier, officer recruiter, Navy Recruiting District St. Louis, said the Navy needs more physicians like Wieland to serve.

“We’re hurting badly and these physicians they’re the ones that are going to come out and deploy and support the warfighter,” said Ampier a native of Danbury, Connecticut.

A special medical VIP team was also established as part of the initiative to provide enhanced service and guidance for qualified physicians and nurses throughout the entire application process.

“The Navy has created this program that makes it very painless to follow through on that desire to serve and I can’t tell you how many people have thanked me for doing this and I haven’t really done anything yet,” said Wieland. “There’s a tremendous gratitude within the Navy and even in my day-to-day work.”

Wieland added that joining the Reserve not only fulfilled his desire to give back, but gives him an opportunity to honor his father who served in the Dental Corps from 1953-1955.

“I could tell it meant a great deal to him to serve his country,” said Wieland. “To this day, at age 87 he lights up when he recounts his experiences in the Navy.”

Wieland said the entire process has been a humbling experience and he is glad he followed through with his decision to join the military.

For more news from Navy Recruiting District St. Louis, visit www.navy.mil/local/nrdsl/.


Hope4Cancer Institute

A cancer diagnosis can be outright scary for any patient, but is it always necessary to treat the cancer right away? That is the question many doctors and patients will have when it comes to prostate cancer. According to new research about prostate cancer diagnoses and treatment plans, there may be some room to heed on the side of caution.

According to new findings, the survivor rate for low-risk prostate cancer is the same whether you get surgery, radiation, or simply don’t do anything at all. This might be because prostate cancer consists of much slower-growing tumors, which means that aggressive treatment might not be the best option for patients looking to maintain a certain quality of life.

We know that conventional treatments for prostate cancer do have major side effects that a patient will need to consider. For example, surgery could lead to incontinence and impotence.  Chemotherapy has its own wide range of side effects that could potentially leave the patient more sick than he would be if he just left it alone or tried an alternative cancer treatment. The latest findings indicate that doctors will need to put more thought into the appropriate cancer treatment to ensure the patient maintains the best quality of life without risking the prostate cancer spreading.

The Hope4Cancer® Institute has reviewed various prostate cancer treatments and maintains the best course of action could be alternative cancer treatments that don’t have the same side effects as conventional medications.

According to the Hope4Cancer® Institute:

  • Radiation, surgery, and chemotherapy therapies leave the body ravished and more at risk for other illnesses because the immune system is at risk.
  • There are non-invasive, non-toxic alternative cancer treatments that may be a better option for less aggressive cancers like prostate cancer.

The team at the Hope4Cancer® Institute is available to speak about alternative cancer treatments to retain patient quality of life and target cancer cells. To speak to a Hope4Cancer patient advisor about our cancer treatment protocols and approach, please call 1-888-544-5993 or +1-619-669-6511, or contact us at info@hope4cancer.com.


#hope4cancerinstitute #cancerawareness        #cancertreatment


First Botany Scar Cream & Epidermal Repairing Cream

If you are on the hunt for something that will decrease scars and discoloring on your skin then First Botany Scar Cream & Epidermal Repairing Cream is just what you need.

This comes in a jar with a top that you have to press down to get it to dispense the cream and just one push is plenty. The scar cream isn’t greasy or sticky – it rubs in well and to me it doesn’t have much of a smell.



I have a condition called Polymorphic Light Eruption. It is an itchy rash caused by sun exposure in people who have developed a sensitivity to sunlight. It appears as red, tiny bumps or slightly raised patches of skin. Along with all of this comes little tiny scars all over my arms.


Since I have staring using this produce the spots aren’t near as noticable as they used to be so I would recommend this to anyone with scars wanting to get rid of them.

** I received this product free or at a discounted rate in exchange for my honest and unbiased opinion.**


Woolzies pure essential oil peppermint

Peppermint is one of my favorite scents so when I had the opportunity to get Woolzies pure essential oil peppermint  at a discount I jumped on it!

Peppermint can be used for a wide variety of things such as: headache relief, anti-inflammatory,  anti-parasitic, antibacterial, digestive stimulant, stuffy nosses, and as a pain releaver.  It can also be used to keep ants at bay as well. I can also be used as a rodent deterant as well.


I have suffered from Chronic Migraines for years and I also have Multiple Sclerosis, Lupus, Fibromyalgia, and several other health issues and peppermint really helps calm me and helps with the pain. I put peppermint on my temples and the back of my neck when I have a migraine or headache and it really helps.  I also put it on any of my other aches and pains and it helps with those as well.

It does well putting it in a oil diffuser and letting the fragrance fill up your room/house. It makes a house smell really good!

I would recommend this to anyone that has pain and wants a natural remedy or anyone that needs to get rid or rodents or ants.

** I received this at a discounted rate in exchange for my honest and unbiased opinion.**