Newsletter Archives > Monthly Health Newsletter: September 2010 Health Newsletter

September 2010 Health Newsletter

Current Articles

» Food Allergies and Disease
» Chiropractic Care For Insomnia?
» Vitamin D – The Super Vitamin
» Vitamin B Slows Dementia
» Legislation Introduced to Include Chiropractors in U.S. Public Health Service...

Food Allergies and Disease

Nicholas R. LeRoy, DC, MS

A food allergy refers to an immune system reaction to an ingested food. This type of immune reaction differs from that of a true allergy by being delayed rather than immediate. Delayed reactions involve IgG antibodies, whereas immediate reactions--characterized by itching and swelling due to the release of histamine--involve IgE antibodies. This distinction is noteworthy because most allergists do not test for delayed reactions, but rather test for the immediate variety of reactions. Skin testing cannot be used to identify delayed food allergies. The symptoms of a food allergy are numerous and include IBS, migraine headaches, GERD, obesity, chronic sinusitis, dermatitis, asthma, fatigue, arthritis, and an increased susceptibility to illnesses.

Under normal circumstances when food is eaten, it is fully digested, absorbed into the bloodstream, and ultimately used by the body's cells. In a delayed food allergy, as the digested food proteins cross the wall of the intestine, white blood cells identify these proteins as being foreign. Antibodies attack the food and chemicals are released into the blood that can influence inflammatory and immune reactions throughout the body. Besides the secretion of these chemicals, antibodies can attach to the food proteins resulting in an antibody/food complex that travels the bloodstream until being scavenged by other immune system cells.

The net effect of food allergies is that your immune system is compromised by continually attacking the food you eat. This sort of misplaced directive not only wastes energy, but also alters the ability of the immune system to perform its functions. Perhaps more damaging is the intensification of inflammatory reactions throughout the body. It is this latter effect whereby asthma, air-borne allergies, chronic sinusitis, migraine headaches, arthritis, and autoimmune disorders can be attributed to food allergies.


  • Eating the same foods in a repetitive fashion can cause food allergies. Under normal circumstances, some partially digested food proteins will find their way to the bloodstream. If the offensive food is eaten frequently, the amount of partially digested material is substantial. When this happens white blood cells will respond by secreting antibodies to that particular food. Over time, more and more antibodies will be secreted and an allergy will develop.
  • A leaky gut syndrome can cause food allergies. Also known as intestinal hyperpermeability, leaky gut syndrome occurs when the intestinal wall loses its selective permeability. Normally, only small particles can cross the intestine into the bloodstream. This selectivity is to prevent the immune system from attacking the absorbed food. When the intestine is damaged, large particulate matter can pass into the blood-even bacteria from the intestine. Hence the gut becomes "leaky" and food allergies will result. Some medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (motrin, alleve, ibuprofen) can result in leaky gut syndrome.
  • Improper digestion results from insufficient stomach acid or digestive enzymes. Foods will not be broken down into their smallest components resulting in the potential absorption of particles large enough to cause a food allergy.

Natural Therapy

To successfully treat food allergies, the allergic foods must be first identified. This can be accomplished with an elimination diet, or with blood testing. Blood testing has the advantage of being quick and accurate. Two such tests that are commonly performed are the RAST (radioallergosorbent test) or the ELISA (enzyme-linked immunoserological assay). There are numerous laboratories that specialize in this variety of procedure. For many years now I have used a Florida-based laboratory called ImmunoLab that performs an ELISA test that is often covered by most insurance companies. Once the offensive foods are discovered, they should be eliminated for at least 3 months to allow the body to desensitize, after which time they can be added back into the diet, provided symptoms do not reoccur.

  • A leaky gut syndrome can be elucidated with a simple urine test. If present, a leaky gut must be treated or the food allergies will never be effectively managed.
  • By following a rotation diet, you may be able to prevent food allergies from reoccurring. Rotating foods is also a sensible way to get a diversity of nutrients necessary for a healthy body.
  • If improper digestion is a problem, it can be identified with a complete stool analysis that looks for undigested foods. This test also looks at the numbers and types of bacteria and yeast present in the intestine. This is important, because a dysbiosis, or imbalance in the bacteria, can cause a leaky gut syndrome and hence food allergies.
  • Plant enzymes can help breakdown proteins, fats, starches, and fibers, thereby improving digestion and minimizing food allergies.

Articles about food allergies:

Author: Nicholas R. LeRoy, DC, MS
Copyright: Nicholas R. LeRoy, DC, MS 2010

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Chiropractic Care For Insomnia?

A recent literature review found some interesting evidence suggesting that chiropractic care may have certain benefits for those suffering from insomnia. In the review, researchers evaluated some 15 studies that met their criteria. Their findings suggested that many of the therapies utilized by certain chiropractors including cranial manipulation, physio and manual therapies as well as mind-body therapies may have benefits for insomnia sufferers. However, no studies have been directly conducted to specifically evaluate and support these findings but based on these previous studies, it may be worth additional investigation.

Source: Journal of Chiropractic Medicine. Vol 9, Issue 3. September 2010.
Copyright: LLC 2010

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Vitamin D – The Super Vitamin

U.K. and Canadian scientists have found vitamin D to be even more so vital to health and well being than previously thought. Their new findings have revealed vitamin D as a direct influencer of more than 200 human genes. One such gene is related to both cancer and autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis. According to scientists, vitamin D deficiency makes us susceptible to a wide host of diseases. Other diseases thought to be influenced by vitamin D deficiencies include rheumatoid arthritis, type 1 diabetes as well as dementia. Vitamin D is naturally produced in the body as a result of direct sun exposure to the skin. Vitamin D is also present in larger amounts in fish oils – a common source for most vitamin D supplements. It’s important to note that in larger quantities, vitamin D is also toxic. A number of experts recommend daily dosages of vitamin D ranging from 25 to 50 micrograms.

Source: Reuters. August 24, 3010.
Copyright: LLC 2010

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Vitamin B Slows Dementia

Results from a 2-year clinical trial have found large daily dosages of B vitamins can cut the rate of brain shrinkage in the elderly who suffer from memory problems in half. Researchers believe this may slow the progression towards dementia and thus be a treatment for those suffering from or at risk of suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. The dosage of vitamin B was administered in very high quantities - folate (also known as folic acid and vitamin B9) at 4 times the recommended daily dosage, vitamin B6 at 15 times the recommended dosage and vitamin B12 at 300 times the recommended dosage. B vitamins reduce plasma levels of homocysteine - an amino acid that is associated with not only an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease, but also an increased risk of coronary heart disease, stroke and peripheral artery disease. It could be through these very large dosages that significantly lower blood levels of homocysteine result in less damage and shrinkage to the brain and its arterial supply. There is more research to be done but these new findings are very exciting and promising for the Alzheimer’s community.

Source: Reuters. September 9, 2010.
Copyright: LLC 2010

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Legislation Introduced to Include Chiropractors in U.S. Public Health Service...

The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) and the Association of Chiropractic Colleges (ACC) today commended Rep. Gene Green (D-Texas) and Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.) for introducing legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives that calls for the appointment of doctors of chiropractic (DCs) as officers in the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Corps. The bill, H.R. 6032, would include DCs in the Regular Corps and the Ready Reserve Corps, and would require the president, in consultation with the Surgeon General and the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, to appoint no fewer than six DCs to the Commissioned Corps. Although the Commissioned Corps includes representatives from many diverse health care professions, no doctors of chiropractic have ever been appointed to serve—ACA and ACC have been working diligently with Reps. Green and Terry to advance this legislation, which specifically addresses this long-standing deficiency. The Commissioned Corps is an elite team of more than 6,000 well-trained, highly qualified public health professionals dedicated to delivering the nation’s public health promotion and disease prevention programs and advancing public health science. Officers in the Corps provide health care services in a variety of locations and venues, including care to members of the U.S. Coast Guard and at community health centers. “Both Rep. Green and Rep. Terry have been champions for improving access to quality health care, and are long-time supporters of the chiropractic profession’s role in delivering vital health services to our nation’s citizens,” said ACA President Rick McMichael, DC. “The services of doctors of chiropractic will be a tremendous value to the Commissioned Corps, and enacting this legislation will be another important milestone in the mission to fully integrate chiropractic care into the nation’s health care delivery system.” "Doctors of chiropractic already serve our nation's active-duty military and veterans with distinction and success,” said ACC President Frank Nicchi, DC. “H.R. 6032 will allow doctors of chiropractic to join forces with other health care providers in the fight against disease, poor health conditions and other threats during both non-emergency and emergency periods for our country. We extend our appreciation to Rep. Green and Rep. Terry for their bipartisan effort to introduce this long-overdue legislation.” H.R. 6032 has been referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, which has jurisdiction over the USPHS. Reps. Green and Terry serve as senior members of that committee. ACA and ACC will soon initiate a range of grassroots activities to build support for this important legislation. To contact your Representative and urge them to cosponsor H.R. 6032, please visit the ACA Legislative Action Center. The American Chiropractic Association, based in Arlington, Va., is the largest professional association in the United States representing doctors of chiropractic. ACA promotes the highest standards of ethics and patient care, contributing to the health and well-being of millions of chiropractic patients. The Association of Chiropractic Colleges represents accredited chiropractic colleges in North America and seeks to advance chiropractic education, research and service.

Author: American Chiropractic Association
Source: August 5, 2010.
Copyright: American Chiropractic Association 2010

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