Heal Your Gut to Reverse Autoimmune Disease

Heal Your Gut to Reverse Autoimmune Disease

Source: GreenMedInfo.com
Ali Le Vere, B.S., B.S.
June 13, 2017

Health Begins In the Gut.  From a clinical standpoint, insofar as functional medicine is concerned, whether you present with rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, ulcerative colitis, or systemic lupus erythematosus—the fundamental objective is the same: heal the gut.

Hippocrates understood the inextricably intertwined relationship between the systemic health of the organism and the nine-meter tube from mouth to anus when he famously uttered, “All disease begins in the gut” over two thousand years ago. The ancient Greek physician also illuminated his understanding of the therapeutic role of nutrition when he championed holistic medicine with his proclamation, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”.

After all, covering an average surface area of thirty-two square meters, the size of half a badminton court, the gut represents the second largest interface between the external environment and the internal biochemical milieu of the body (Helander & Fandriks, 2014). Over sixty tons of food will pass through our gastrointestinal tract in our lifetime.

Why is gut health so paramount in prevention and treatment of autoimmune disease? If you are a savvy consumer of holistic health information, you probably already know how important our microbiome—the collection of one hundred trillion commensal bacteria that inhabit our colon, plus their genetic material—is to our health. Although the widely cited 10:1 ratio has been revised, researchers estimate that we have at least as many bacterial cells as human cells, which has led some scientists like Stanford’s Dr. Justin Sonnenberg to hypothesize that humans may merely be elaborate vessels designed for the propagation of bacterial colonies (Sender, Fuchs, & Milo, 2016).

At any single moment, two to six pounds of bacteria resides within us. Even more awe-inspiring is that a single person contains 3.8×10^13 bacteria (38,000,000,000,000 colony forming units)—a number representing more than all the stars in the galaxy (Sender, Fuchs, & Milo, 2016).

Following the advent of germ theory and the discovery of vaccinations, scientists were under the impression that all bacteria were bad bugs, and speculated that specific microbes were the causative agents behind particular disease entities. This led to the reductionist, pill-for-every-ill therapies that predominate in Western medicine, as well as to the maligning of all bacteria as organisms to be feared and eradicated. Thus the age of antibiotics, triclosan-laden anti-bacterial soaps, hand sanitizer, chemical cleaners, and the “there’s a shot for that” mentality was inaugurated.

Ironically, it is rumored that on his deathbed, Louis Pasteur, the father of immunization and pasteurization himself, admitted that it is the terrain—the gut ecology and biochemical milieu—that matters, rather than the infecting pathogen (Tracey, 2017). In other words, our bodies, like plants, are more susceptible to pests, or infection, when our ecosystem is in a state of disharmony—when our microbial soil is depleted and our micronutrient status is compromised.

The magic bullet approach initially introduced by Pasteur, however, was misguided, and has the potential to produce dire consequences for immune health. In fact, the hygiene hypothesis, embraced by many scientists, purports that the reason that autoimmune diseases and atopic disorders (eczema, allergies, asthma) are epidemic in the Western world while virtually absent from developing nations is the hyper-sanitized, antibiotic-ridden society in which we live, which has decimated our gut microflora and thus obliterated their beneficial effects on our immune systems (after all, 70% of our immune system resides within our gut) (Vighi et al., 2008).

According to the hygiene hypothesis, the immune system acquires self-tolerance, or the ability to distinguish self from stranger and safety from danger, and thus prevent overreactions against our own tissue, based on repeated infectious exposures (Eschler, Hasham, & Tomer, 2011). Further, “Some pathogens have the potential to prevent or abrogate rather than induce an autoimmune process,” such that annihilating them with antibiotics results in improper maturation of the immune system and a tendency towards autoimmune reactions (Christen, 2014).

However, antibiotics are not only harmful in that they prevent infections from instructing development of the immune system. They also disrupt the finely tuned symphony of actions orchestrated by our microbiota, or those friendly bugs that inhabit our gut. The microbiota serve innumerable roles, including competing for attachment sites with potentially pathogenic microbes, reducing their virulence, inhibiting the effects of bacterial toxins, and generating anti-microbial substances such as bacteriocidins and hydrogen peroxide that can selectively suppress pathogenic bacteria and fungi (Corr et al., 2009; Castagliuolo et al., 1999).

Our gut microbes also promote the de-conjugation and detoxification of proliferative, carcinogenic estrogen species and other exogenous toxins, reducing their enterohepatic recirculation (Gorbach, 1984). Commensal bacteria likewise aid in nutrient extraction and assimilation, as the secondary bile acids and short-chain fatty acids they produce from fermentation of indigestible carbohydrates lead to liberation of compounds like peptide YY from cells, which decreases intestinal transit, encourages satiety, maximizes nutrient absorption, and increases energy harvested from food (Boulange et al., 2016).

Critically, gut bacteria reinforce the intestinal barrier, preventing metabolic endotoxemia, a process which contributes to metabolic syndrome, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD), coronary heart disease, stroke, and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) (Neves et al., 2013; Lindheim et al., 2017). The products of microbial fermentation of prebiotic carbohydrates also increase insulin sensitivity and improve glucose balance, which prevents the pathologic insulin resistance, oxidative stress, and endothelial dysfunction that lead to diabetes and cardiovascular disease (Boulange et al., 2016).

The maintenance of the intestinal lining by the microbiota similarly prevents autoimmune disease. For instance, a decrease in bifidobacteria populations leads to intestinal hyperpermeability, or leaky gut, which in turn leads to the translocation of metabolic byproducts, food antigens, bacteria, and lipopolysaccharide (also known as LPS, an immunogenic cell wall component from Gram-negative bacteria) across the gut barrier into systemic circulation (Rapin & Wiernsperger, 2010). This activates the mesenteric lymph nodes and gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT) and instigates a downstream inflammatory cascade.

Medications Compromise Gut Barrier Integrity

A single course of antibiotics can lead to perturbations in microbiota lasting up to 16 months on average, or 18 to 24 months for Clindamycin and up to four years following triple therapy for Helicobacter pylori (Hawrelak & Myers, 2004; Jernberg et al., 2010; Cotter et al., 2012). Even worse, novel molecular analysis techniques using 16S rRNA have demonstrated that antibiotic-resistant microbes are present up to four years post-antibiotic (Jernberg et al., 2010; Cotter et al., 2012).

Other commonly used medicinal agents, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as Motrin, Ibuprofen, and Naproxen, increase concentrations of gram-negative bacteria, which produce lipopolysacchide (LPS), the endotoxin that can traverse the gut barrier and generate a milieu favoring insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, NAFLD, PCOS, coronary heart disease and stroke (Marlicz et al., 2014).

In addition to inducing gastrointestinal ulcers, increasing risk of myocardial infarction by a third, and doubling risk of congestive heart failure, NSAIDs have also been demonstrated to decrease concentrations of bifidobacteria and lactobacilli—beneficial commensal flora populations in our gut (Bhala et al., 2013; Montenegro et al., 2014). Because bifidobacteria are responsible for butyrate production, the short chain fatty acid that heals and seals the gut lining, a decrease in bifidobacteria can perpetuate leaky gut syndrome.

What’s more, acid-blocking drugs, or proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) such as Prilosec and Nexium, used for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), are associated with a decrease in small bowel beneficial bifidobacteria and a significant decline in microbial diversity within seven days of beginning therapy (Seto et al., 2014; Wallace et al., 2011). PPIs have likewise been shown to increase the risk of small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) and the potentially fatal infection, Clostridium difficile (Lo & Chan, 2013; Janarthanan et al., 2012).

With antibiotics in particular, however, there is evidence of localized permanent extinction—in other words, some species of microorganisms never recover post-antibiotic, and cannot be “reinoculated” unless you undergo the arduous and expensive process of fecal microbiota transplant (FMT).

Furthermore, even food preparation and processing can influence intestinal permeability. When food is browned or caramelized as part of the Maillard reaction, reducing sugars spontaneously react with lipids, nucleic acids, and aminopeptides, creating advanced glycation end products (AGEs) in a process that generates free radicals, inflammation, and ensuing intestinal permeability (Vlassara & Uribarri, 2004; Bengmark, 2007).

The Leaky Gut – Autoimmune Connection

The intestinal barrier is a mucosal surface wherein epithelial cells known as enterocytes are separated by tight junction proteins, desmosomes, and adherens junctions that function as architectural scaffolding and selective gates, opening and closing to allow fluid and nutrients to be absorbed and waste products to be excreted (Groschwitz & Hogan, 2009). According to Turner (2009), epithelial cells “establish a barrier between sometimes hostile external environments and the internal milieu” (p. 799). This barrier is critical because “The mucosa is directly exposed to the external environment and taxed with antigenic loads…at far greater quantities on a daily basis than the systemic immune system sees in a lifetime” (Mayer, 2003).

Tight junctions, regulated by a molecule called zonulin, as well as by conformational changes in the proteins occludin and claudin, are dynamic intercellular structures that modulate the trafficking or passage of macromolecules from the intestinal lumen to the submucosa and into systemic circulation (Fasano, 2012). According to Rapin and Wiernsperger (2010), “Tight junctions play a major role in regulating the paracellular passage of luminal elements” (p. 635).

Under normal circumstances, solutes exceeding a certain size, or molecular radius, are prohibited from absorption across the gut barrier by competent tight junctions (Fasano, 2012). However, when insults such as gluten, dysbiosis, pathogens, toxins, over-exercising, chemotherapy, radiation, and medications such as NSAIDs and steroids disrupt the tight junctions, microbial products and intact food proteins that have not been degraded into their constituent parts translocate across the paracellular space into the body (Fasano, 2012).

Macrophages embedded in the GALT are part of the innate immune system, or the non-specific, first line of defense against infection (Fasano, 2011; Yu & Yang, 2009). These cells, along with dendritic cells, recognize the incoming undigested food particles, toxic agents, and bacterial components as foreign invaders, and present them to cells of the adaptive immune system called T and B lymphocytes, leading to clonal expansion (proliferation or multiplication of specific subsets of T and B cells) and recruitment of more pro-inflammatory immune cells to the gut through a process called leukocyte homing.

The release of inflammatory cytokines, or intercellular signaling molecules such as interleukin-1 (IL-1), interleukin-2 (IL-6), and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) at the site of immune activation causes other immune cells migrating throughout the lymphatic vessels of the body to express more cell adhesion molecules (CAMs). CAMS enable white blood cells to stick to and roll along blood vessels and extravasate, or navigate across, the blood vessels made leaky by histamine and other local vasodilators, into the inflamed intestinal tissue. Cytokines contribute to this vicious process of leaky gut syndrome, as they also play a prominent role in compromising tight junction integrity (Watson, Duckworth, Guan, & Montrose, 2009). This culminates in a massive inflammatory response that can become systemic and lead to autoimmunity.

When the amino acid sequence is homologous between the target antigen, such as gluten, against which the immune system is mounting a response, and tissue proteins, such as the thyroid tissue, a case of mistaken identity occurs, and the immune response can become directed against self tissues, manifesting as autoimmune disease (Hashimoto’s thyroiditis in this instance). Summarized by Suzuki (2013), “Disruption of the intestinal tight junction barrier, followed by permeation of luminal noxious molecules, induces a perturbation of the mucosal immune system and inflammation, and can act as a trigger for the development of intestinal and systemic diseases” (p. 631).

A protein called zonulin is responsible for induction of tolerance and orchestration of immune responses by modulating intercellular tight junctions in the gastrointestinal epithelium in a rapid, reversible, and reproducible fashion (Fasano, 2011). Zonulin evolved as an adaptive mechanism to flush out microorganisms as part of the innate immune response against bacterial colonization of the small intestine (Fasano, 2011).

Specific gliadin-permeating peptides can initiate intestinal permeability via MyD88-dependent release of zonulin, which causes conformational changes in tight junction architecture and cytoskeletal assembly that leads to paracellular entry of gliadin (a gluten sub-fraction) into the intestinal submucosa (Thomas, Fasano, & Vogel, 2006). Signaling through the CXCR3-mediated, MyD88-dependent pathway generates a Th1-dominant, pro-inflammatory cytokine milieu that recruits mononuclear cells into the submucosa (Fasano, 2011). After gliadin infiltrates the lamina propria, the barrier function can be further disrupted by the persistence of inflammatory mediators such as TNF-α and interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) (Fasano, 2011).

In those individuals predisposed to celiac disease, gliadin is presented by HLA-DQ and HLA-DR major histocompatibility complex (MHC) molecules, leading to abrogation of oral tolerance and a transition to a Th1/Th17 response (Fasano, 2011). Dendritic cells home to pancreatic and mesenteric lymph nodes and present gliadin, leading to “migration of CD4−CD8−γδ and CD4−CD8+ αβ T cells to the target organ (gut and/or pancreas) where they cause inflammation” (Fasano, 2011). This results in the interaction between T cells and antigen-presenting cells, producing the adaptive immune response that causes profound villous atrophy in celiac disease (Fasano, 2011). Celiac disease patients have higher concentrations of serum zonulin during the acute phase of disease compared with their healthy counterparts, and also have over-expressed CXCR3, the intestinal receptor for gliadin (Fasano, 2011).

However, even in healthy individuals, biopsies reveal a transient zonulin release upon gluten ingestion accompanied by an increase in intestinal permeability that does not reach the level observed in celiac disease (Drago et al., 2006). The authors of the in vitro study state, “Based on our results, we concluded that gliadin activates zonulin signaling irrespective of the genetic expression of autoimmunity, leading to increased intestinal permeability to macromolecules” (Drago et al., 2006, p. 408). Furthermore, when intestinal biopsies were examined from celiac patients with active disease, celiac patients in remission, non-celiac gluten-sensitive patients, and non-celiac controls, intestinal permeability was found to occur after gliadin exposure in all individuals (Hollon et al., 2015).

The same mechanism is implicated in all autoimmune diseases—leaky gut leading to molecular mimicry and/or the bystander effect—biochemical processes that could be characterized as “friendly fire” that are responsible for the resultant tissue damage and symptom expression (Fasano, 2012). Thus, compromised gut integrity, or dysfunctional intestinal permeability, is a precursor and essential trigger for all autoimmune disease, including celiac disease, type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and ankylosing spondylitis, and can also appear in allergic syndromes such as asthma (Fasano, 2012; Drago et al., 2006; Westall, 2007; Edwards, 2008; Yacyshyn & Meddings, 1995; Martinez-Gonzalez et al., 1994; Schmitz et al., 1999; Hijazi et al., 2004).

Moreover, intestinal permeability, as assessed by a lactulose-mannitol test, may predispose a patient to the development of food reactions, as increased intestinal permeability is associated with food allergy (Laudat et al., 1994; Andre, 1986). However, food allergy itself may inflict “mucosal damage caused by local hypersensitivity reactions to food antigens,” creating a pattern in which an individual becomes sensitive to more and more foods (Tatsuno, 1989).

An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure

For people resistant to dietary and lifestyle modifications to resolve intestinal permeability, I will share that I am a living testament to the consequences of dysfunctional intestinal permeability, which leads to a domino scenario where autoimmune conditions are developed one after another. This scenario is far from uncommon, as a fourth of patients with autoimmune disease tend to develop additional autoimmune diseases, leading to multiple autoimmune syndrome. It is often cited that an individual is three times as likely to develop another autoimmune disease after acquiring one (Cojocaru, Cojocaru, & Silosi, 2010). Hence, my mission is to save others from the heartache I have endured as a consequence of these devastating chronic illnesses.

The succession of autoimmune diseases I developed due to a confluence of environmental triggers, genetic susceptibilities, and compromised gut barrier speak to the importance of preserving tight junction integrity and acting as a guardian of your gut epithelium. The gravity of leaky gut syndrome is illustrated by Brandtzaeg (2013), who states, “Increased epithelial permeability for antigens is a crucial primary or secondary event in the pathogenesis of several disorders” (p. 67).

In my case, a multitude of factors converged to produce autoimmunity—intestinal hyper-permeability, dysbiosis, food sensitivities, mitochondrial dysfunction, genetic polymorphisms, histamine intolerance, mycotoxins, adrenal dysfunction, heavy metal toxicity, micronutrient deficiencies, hormonal imbalances, and a host of recalcitrant and stealth infections. Reversing an autoimmune disease is magnitudes of order more complex than preventing one, which is why educating the public at large about how intestinal permeability serves as a prelude to autoimmunity is of the utmost importance.

However, if you go to a conventional physician complaining of a leaky gut, your concerns are likely to be dismissed and more often than not, you will leave with a recommendation to spend less time on the internet—or even worse, your symptoms will be branded psychosomatic and your doctor will label you a hypochondriac, as almost half of autoimmune patients experience in the subclinical stages of their disease (AARDA, 2017).

Despite the litany of peer-reviewed studies in the scientific literature on pathologic paracellular intestinal hyper-permeability, the biomedical establishment is by and large ignorant to this condition and its implications. Ironically, although Western medicine relegates leaky gut syndrome to the realm of fanciful fairy tales, the pharmaceutical industry is actively investigating drugs to reverse it (Kato et al., 2017). Only when there is a financial incentive and a pharmaceutical approach developed for a disorder is it anointed with legitimacy in the eyes of the allopathic physician.

If health is your objective, however, restoration of gut barrier integrity should be prioritized, since, “The autoimmune process can be arrested if the interplay between genes and environmental triggers is preventing by re-establishing intestinal barrier function” (Fasano & Shea-Donohue, 2005). Because gluten is pivotally implicated in intestinal hyper-permeability, its exclusion from the diet, along with an oligoantigenic elimination-provocation diet, should be a first line of treatment in any patient on the autoimmune spectrum.

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“Driving While Medicated” now a greater danger to society than driving drunk: Crashes from prescription meds up 100% in past decade

Image: “Driving While Medicated” now a greater danger to society than driving drunk: Crashes from prescription meds up 100% in past decade
Source: Naturalnews.com
Tracey Watson
June 5, 2017

The recent arrest of golfing legend Tiger Woods for driving under the influence of prescription drugs has put the issue of drugged driving back in the spotlight. Although initial reports indicated that Woods had been driving under the influence of alcohol, it was later confirmed that his readings for two breathalyzer tests were 0.00, and that his erratic behavior was actually caused by a cocktail of drugs prescribed after knee and Achilles tendon injuries, as well as a recent back surgery.

Police officers initially approached Woods when they saw his Mercedes-Benz pulled over on the side of the road; he was apparently sleeping behind the wheel. Dashcam video footage shows a dazed and disoriented Woods struggling to complete a field sobriety test and becoming confused when officers asked him to recite the alphabet.

“What happened was an unexpected reaction to prescribed medications,” Woods said in a statement. “I didn’t realize the mix of medications had affected me so strongly.”

Many other people have made the same mistake of miscalculating just how much they have been affected by pharmaceutical medications before getting behind the wheel. Market Watch reports that the number of vehicle accidents where drugged drivers were involved nearly doubled between 2005 and 2015. Over 20 percent of the 32,166 fatal accidents in the U.S. in 2015 involved at least one drugged driver. In some states, driving under the influence of prescription pills is even more common than driving drunk. And it is becoming increasingly common for people to combine alcohol with drugs, not realizing how much the effects are amplified. [RELATED: For more stories like this see Twisted.news]

Unfortunately, like Tiger Woods, many people have no idea how much prescription drugs have actually altered their behavior, and feel that they are totally capable of driving. The reality is that they are putting themselves, their passengers and everyone else on the road at risk.

The National Institute of Drug Abuse website explains that just as illegal street drugs like cocaine or methamphetamine affect the brain, and therefore behavior, prescription drugs also have a variety of different effects on those who use them. Benzodiazepines like Diazepam, Xanax and Valium, can cause dizziness and drowsiness. While marijuana has a plethora of absolutely amazing health benefits, it too has been linked to poor reaction time, lane weaving and impaired ability to pay attention to the road. Of course, this should not deter people from reaping the benefits of its natural healing power, but caution needs to be used when driving after using marijuana. [RELATED: Study finds that marijuana can replace dangerous opioid drugs for pain relief.]

Some states have a zero-tolerance policy for all drugged driving, since it is very difficult to determine how any drug or drugs in combination with alcohol might affect a given person. In such states, one can be arrested for driving under the influence if tests find any traces of drugs in the blood or urine.

With so many states recently legalizing marijuana for medical and recreational use, a lot of focus has been placed on its effects on driving ability. Interestingly, there has been no such focus on the many prescription drugs which have been scientifically proven to impair judgment. Perhaps if more attention was paid to the issue, people like Tiger Woods would not end up in possibly life-threatening situations because of sheer ignorance.

Sources :

MarketWatch.com

DrugAbuse.gov

KESQ.com

CNBC.com

Preventable Medical Mistakes Are The Third Leading Cause Of Death In The United States | #BigPharma

TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
May 8, 2017

On July 26, 2000, As Dr. Barbara Starfield shared a study titled “Is US Health Really The Best Of The World?”.  This landmark study was published by the Journal Of American Medical Association (JAMA), and it showed that FDA-approved prescription drugs, kill, conservatively, 109,000 people every single year.

That’s not speculation.  That’s not theory.  THIS HAPPENS EVERY SINGLE YEAR.

Combined with other preventable medical mistakes, which kill 119,000 people yearly, the total amount of preventable medical deaths amount to 225,000 people dying every year.

Moreover, rather recently, it was reported by the British Medical Journal [BMJ] –  that preventable medical errors were the third leading cause of death in the United States.

Let’s see anyone call that Fake News.

Medications

Why should it take 14 years to learn a drug’s safety risks?

Depression More Common In People Who Talk About Themselves
Source: PostBulletin.com
John Scott
September 21, 2016

How would you describe the behavior of a teenager who takes 80 tablets of of an over-the-counter medication that’s deadly in high doses? Or an adolescent who had a disagreement with her mother, then overdoses on prescription pills? Or a child that had to be admitted to the hospital for severe suicidal and homicidal thinking?

Most people would call that becoming suicidal.

The makers of Paxil, in an influential 2001 research paper signed by some of the leading figures in child and adolescent psychiatry — including the current president of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry — called it “emotional lability.”

Why would you give such a confusing name to such apparently suicidal actions? To hide them, of course.

That’s the best explanation that comes to mind after the findings published in the journal BMJ last week — 14 years later — that the blockbuster antidepressant is neither safe nor effective in the treatment of depression in adolescents and children. In fact, the study found, it is far more dangerous than previously realized — the drug caused 11 out of 93 children to develop suicidal behaviors, compared to just 1 out of 87 on a placebo. The original paper only reported five such events on Paxil.

The recent news about the distortion of the clinical trial that put millions of kids on Paxil in the U.S. did not arise thanks to the makers of the pill, or the FDA, or the health media. As former Boston Globe reporter Allison Bass described in her 2008 book “Side Effects,” the data that paved the way for last week’s study came into public domain thanks to a series of accidents.

Paxil’s undisclosed liabilities came to light because a TV reporter in Scotland thought the term “emotional lability” made no sense, did a show about it, then an insider at the drug company leaked some emails showing the company knew the drug wasn’t safe or effective, which led then-New York attorney general Elliot Spitzer to sue the makers of the drug for fraud.

Almost no one was interested in that lawsuit — the makers of Paxil paid a fine and the world moved on. Except, thanks to Spitzer’s office, they had made public much of the data behind the trial, opaque decision-making that would have otherwise been called proprietary.

That means it’s not even clear that there is anything especially unique about Paxil. Other drugs, and especially drugs of this class, could have similar problems and yet we will never know because we do not get to see the soft underbelly of a clinical trial of a new drug — the many ways a manufacturer can use sleight-of-hand and ghostwriters to distort their findings and hide a drug’s problems.

Fast forward 14 years, and Dr. Peter Doshi, a University of Maryland researcher who made his name by learning that the evidence supporting the drug Tamiflu was not as apparent as we had been told (when our nation spent billions stockpiling it), wondered what could be learned by starting with the so-called “clinical study reports” from the clinical trial that put Paxil on the market.

To their credit, GSK, the company that now owns Paxil, let a tenacious set of researchers, including psychiatrists Dr. Jon Jureidini, Dr. David Healy and Dr. John Nardo, probe an even deeper level of transparency, the so-called “case report forms” — patient level paperwork stripped of all identification data — where side effects show up and are coded.

That’s where they found out how seriously suicidal the patients taking Paxil had become.

The authors stress that if a child is taking Paxil that parents should not stop the drug — there is the risk of a withdrawal syndrome in the same findings, which is why they should talk to their doctor about their concerns.

It has become fashionable for clinicians hoping to prescribe these drugs to youth and adolescents to say the side effects are overblown, and that the benefits of the drug outweigh their risks.

You will hear advocates of the pills say that children only think about suicide on the drug, but do not attempt it, or that Paxil is a unique case, but all the other antidepressants are not nearly as concerning.

But they do not have the raw data behind the trials that put those drugs on the market, and neither do the doctors who signed the published clinical trials that put those drugs on the market.

They remain the property of drug makers. It has to end. Science is numbers, and if the public is to be asked to trust the numbers, episodes like the publication this week of the news about Paxil tell us to trust, but verify.

Read More At: PostBulletin.com

Harvard Study Finally Admits Drug Prices are High Because Govt Grants Big Pharma a Monopoly

big-pharma
via: GreyEnigma.wordpress.com
via: SentinalBlog.com
Source: ActivistPost.com
Matt Agorist
August 27, 2016

In what can only be described as paradigm-shattering research on drug prices, the Journal of the American Medical Association has officially recognized why drug prices skyrocket in America. Big pharma is granted a monopoly by the State which effectively eliminates their competition and allows them to charge any price they want — so they do.

The new paper, published on August 23,  “The High Cost of Prescription Drugs in the United States: Origins and Prospects for Reform,” set out to  “review the origins and effects of high drug prices in the US market and to consider policy options that could contain the cost of prescription drugs.”

What the paper’s authors, Harvard Medical School doctors Aaron Kesselheim and Jerry Avorn, and jurist Ameet Sarpatwari, found and subsequently admitted, shatters the very assertion that government regulation in the market is needed to keep medical care costs low. In fact, their findings were quite to the contrary.

According to the paper:

The most important factor that allows manufacturers to set high drug prices is market exclusivity, protected by monopoly rights awarded upon Food and Drug Administration approval and by patents.

Imagine that.

The costs associated with studying, testing, and getting new drugs approved can be staggering, and the money made from selling the new drug is often used to pay for future drugs as well as paying back investments made to produce the current ones. Unfortunately, the people involved in creating life-saving drugs cannot work for free.

Nothing is wrong with making a drug that saves lives and profiting from it. However, when the profits are a direct result of government involvement, it no longer becomes an issue of innovation and the market, but rather an issue of a State-granted monopoly.

According to the paper:

Although prices are often justified by the high cost of drug development, there is no evidence of an association between research and development costs and prices; rather, prescription drugs are priced in the United States primarily on the basis of what the market will bear.

Increasing the market price of an item to the maximum profit per unit is a natural function of the free market. And, contrary to what the pro-government regulation sect asserts, this increase in price in relation to supply coupled with competition, happens to work toward keeping prices down — unless these prices are protected by a government-granted monopoly. 

As the paper points out:

The most important factor that allows manufacturers to set high drug prices for brand-name drugs is market exclusivity, which arises from 2 forms of legal protection against competition. Together, these factors generate government-granted monopoly rights for a defined period. Initial regulatory exclusivity is awarded at FDA approval.

While the Journal of the American Medical Association is finally admitting the reason for skyrocketing drug prices, Austrian economists have been pointing this out for decades.

Ludwig von Mises correctly explains the situation in the statement below:

As has been pointed out already, there is no such tendency toward monopolization. It is a fact that with many commodities in many countries monopoly prices prevail, and moreover, some articles are sold at monopoly prices on the world market. However, almost all of these instances of monopoly prices are the outgrowth of government interference with business. They were not created by the interplay of the factors operating on a free market. They are not products of capitalism, but precisely of the endeavors to counteract the forces determining the height of the market prices. It is a distortion of fact to speak of monopoly capitalism. It would be more appropriate to speak of monopoly interventionism or of monopoly statism.

A glaring example of the staggering discrepancies in American drug prices can be seen in the remarkable drug for Hep C, sofosbuvir. Sofosbuvir boasts a near miraculous cure rate of 84-96% for Hep C. 

However, the American version of the drug Solvaldi by Gilead, which has an FDA-granted monopoly protecting it, will cost patients a mountainous $84,000. 

In India, however, Gilead has to compete in a free market. Competitors, of which there a many, using the older, much cheaper, and equally effective drug, have driven the price down to a mere $4 a pill. This makes the total cost of curing Hepatitis C in India’s free market — $336.

Because the FDA has become little more than a revolving door for the pharmaceutical industry to continually grant itself special privilege, the natural checks and balances of the market do not apply and we see seemingly insane price differences when compared to other markets.

One example of this revolving door is FDA member, Milton Packer, who chairs the Cardiovascular and Renal Drugs Advisory Committee. Packer, who reviews applications for drugs submitted for FDA approval, is financed by Novartis and actually spoke on their behalf to the advisory board that he chaired.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Packer also appeared before the Cardiovascular and Renal Drugs Advisory Committee involved speaking on behalf of Bristol-Myers Squibb in 2002; acted as a consultant and speaker for GlaxoSmithKline in 2003; appeared as a speaker for NitroMed in 2005; appeared as a speaker for Sanofi in 2009 and acted as a consultant on behalf of Pfizer in 2010.

And Packer is only one example, the list goes on.

The timing of this paper is impeccable given the recent hoopla in the news on the absurd price hike of EpiPens. Mylan CEO, Heather Bresch – daughter of Senator Joe Manchin (D-West Virginia) — is on the receiving end of the FDA’s power to monopolize drugs. As a result of her monopoly, no one can compete with Mylan which has grown Bresch’s annual salary from $2.4 million in 2007 to $18.9 million in 2015.

Again, there is nothing wrong with making money. But, when that money is made at the expense of everyone else — freedom loses.

While the mainstream media often acknowledges that these drug companies charge exorbitant prices for their medications, they conveniently leave out the reason they can do so is because they have the full support of Uncle Sam.

Instead of looking at the corrupt government, who has the unique ability to create and sustain monopolies, the evil market is blamed, and people ironically call for more government – thus creating a vicious cycle of corporatism.

Hopefully, this admonition in JAMA, by these doctors from the Harvard Medical School, opens the eyes of those who continuously cry for more regulation to control prices. We’ve seen where that’s gotten us.

Here at the Free Thought Project we agree with the authors when they say:

High drug prices are the result of the approach the United States has taken to granting government-protected monopolies to drug manufacturers, combined with coverage requirements imposed on government-funded drug benefits. The most realistic short-term strategies to address high prices include enforcing more stringent requirements for the award and extension of exclusivity rights; enhancing competition by ensuring timely generic drug availability.

Matt Agorist is the co-founder of TheFreeThoughtProject.com, where this article first appeared. He is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world.

Read More At: GreyEnigma.com

The 8 Most Dangerous Medicines on Earth… Are You Taking Any Of These?

Dangerous medicine
Source: NaturalNews.com
S.D. Wells
August 30, 2016

“It’s time to take your medicine, honey.” “But Mom, it’s making me feel weird and horrible, and I’m not getting any better.” “Well, it’s what the doctor prescribed, so it’s what we have to do.” Have you ever been told to listen to your gut? There’s a reason for that. Actually, several reasons.

Many “Western” medicines are made in laboratories using chemicals and are highly experimental, and worse yet, they’re never tested on humans, except when they’re actually prescribed, applied, or injected into them. Humans are the ultimate guinea pigs in America, while Big Pharma pockets trillions in profit. How did this all come to be? Simple answer: After WWII, Nazi scientists were hired fresh out of prison to work on pharmaceuticals, vaccines, chemotherapy, and chemical food additives, in order to fuel the most insidious business on earth–allopathic medicine. It’s no conspiracy theory either. The horror that took place at the Holocaust in Germany was continued, on a lesser scale, in the United States, for money.

Think about it. There is NO OTHER REASON our U.S. based pharmaceutical companies hired convicted mass murderers to fill the highest positions at Bayer, BASF, and Hoechst. Fritz ter Meer, convicted of mass murder, served just 5 prison years, then conveniently became the chairman of Bayer’s supervisory board (yes, THAT Bayer–that makes children’s medications and the most popular aspirin). Carl Wurster of BASF helped manufacture Zyklon-B gas, the powerful pesticide used to execute millions of Jews–this freak went to work on chemotherapy, the biggest medical scam of the century. Kurt Blome, who admitted to killing Jews with “gruesome experiments,” was hired in 1951 by the U.S. Army Chemical Corps to work on chemical warfare. Get it?

In other words, Big Pharma’s evil seeds, which the FDA calls medicine, were first planted in the United States 65 years ago. Many of the “mad scientists” who tortured innocent human beings in the Holocaust were hired and promoted by U.S. Presidents to catapult what we call “Western Medicine,” and its ultimate goal of creating sickness, and then treating its symptoms for profit.

Take heed, my friends, because THESE are the 8 most DANGEROUS MEDICINES on Planet Earth. It’s called the “War Against the Weak.”

War Against the Weak

#1. SSRIs – highly experimental, never proven safe or effective, and can completely block serotonin, leading to thoughts of suicide and even homicidal and suicidal acts of horror.

#2. MMR vaccine (measles, mumps, rubella) – associated with causing autism and other central nervous system disorders and a myriad of health issues. When the LIVE measles virus gets into the body, the immune system is severely compromised, and the other chemical adjuvants and genetically modified ingredients attack the child, causing permanent and sometimes fatal results.

#3. Influenza vaccine (flu shot) – contains up to 50,000 parts per billion of mercury, in addition to formaldehyde, MSG, and aluminum. Can cause pregnant women to abort and have miscarriages

#4. Antibiotics – annihilate good gut bacteria and therefore severely decreases immune system. Doctors inappropriately prescribe antibiotics for viral infections and make matters much worse!

#5. HPV vaccine (human papillomavirus) – known to send teens into anaphylactic shock and comas. Thousands of families have sued the manufacturers for millions of dollars for chronic and permanent health damages.

#6. Chemotherapy – annihilates the immune system and often leads to the body forming new cancers, especially in the blood. Nazi scientists knew in the 1950s that chemotherapy only makes cancer temporarily recede, only to come back with a vengeance in other parts of the body! (Still, Western Medicine calls this successful)

#7. “RotaTeq” rotavirus vaccine – extremely toxic (oral) vaccine contains LIVE rotavirus strains (G1, G2, G3, G4, and P1), plus highly toxic polysorbate 80 and FETAL BOVINE SERUM. Also contains parts of porcine circovirus – a virus that INFECTS PIGS.

#8. Polio vaccine (oral and injected with needle) – It’s a cold, hard, scary fact that millions of Americans were injected with CANCER when they got the polio vaccine. Plus, the oral and nasal versions of the vaccine have been spreading polio in India and leaving many children paralyzed for life.

Sure, people are paranoid of infectious diseases and for good reason. The American medicine industry has exacerbated the WORST cases on record to scare the living hell out of everyone into injected their known carcinogens for “protection.” It’s racketeering and it’s illegal, but the vaccine manufacturers are immune to lawsuits, protected by a massive slush fund and their own secret court of law. If you or your child is severely injured by vaccines, you CANNOT sue the vaccine manufacturer. You will have to take that case to the Office of Special MASTERS of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, which is commonly called the highly secretive “Vaccine Court.” This corrupt “court” administers a no-fault compensation program (yes, you read that correctly), that serves as an alternative to your Constitutional rights. Established back in 1986, after drug companies lost massive profits in high-profile lawsuits due to vaccines severely damaging a number of children, who suffered seizures and brain damage, linked to the DPT vaccine.

Before you EVER consider swallowing or injecting chemical toxins called “medicine” again, visit at least one Naturopathic Physician and find out if the health problem or problems are nutritional based, because odds are, they are!

Read More At: NaturalNews.com

Sources for this article include:

NaturalNews.com

Truthwiki.org

WarAgainstTheWeak.com

NaturalNews.com

http://www.npr.org

NaturalNews.com

CureYourOwnCancer.org

FoodForensics.com


NaturalNews.com

tv.naturalnews.com

blogs.naturalnews.com

NaturalNews.com

Truthwiki.org

NaturalNews.com

The 9 Most Popular Foods, Drinks & ‘Medicines’ That Cause Chronic Disease By Destroying Good Gut Bacteria

[Editor’s Note]

For those wishing to know more about this abstruse subject, please read:

Gut & Psychology Syndrome – Natural Treatment For Autism, Dyspraxia, ADD, Dyslexia, ADHD, Depression, Schizophrenia by Dr. Natasha Campbell-Mcbride

Gut bacteria
Source: NaturalNews.com
S.D. Wells
June 29, 2016

Would you drive up to a gas station and purposely put diesel fuel in your new car, knowing that it would break down, possibly within days, even though diesel is still “fuel?” If your garden was growing beautiful, organic vegetables, and you woke up one morning and saw hundreds of little bugs crawling on your produce, but they hadn’t eaten it yet, would you spray everything with toxic bug killer, try to rinse it off afterwards, and then still eat it and feed it to your kids?

In the first example, once your car burns up the regular gas and starts using the diesel, the engine will shut down. Plus, the longer the wrong fuel stays in your car’s system, the more damage it does to the engine, the fuel system and the injectors. In the second example, the toxic bug-killer is going to soak into most of the food, especially anything leafy or of the “dirty dozen,” which have porous outer coverings; therefore, washing them off does virtually no good.

Common sense tells us that in either case, the wrong kind of fuel, or worse, food soaked in poison, breaks down your “motor” and weakens your entire system. The human body is not very different to a car’s motor. Even though we have cleansing organs made to filter toxins, they can only do so much work, and when they get overloaded, they too work less efficiently, and eventually, break down and stop working altogether. Lines get clogged, like your digestive tract, and fuel injectors inject the wrong fuel, like your heart sending less blood and oxygen to your extremities, and the body simply stops “firing on all cylinders.”

Good gut bacteria (flora) should outnumber bad gut bacteria 85 percent to 15 percent

If you don’t know it already, genetically engineered or genetically modified (GM) food means that the seeds, stems, leaves and produce all contain bug-killing and weed-killing genes so that corporations can try to increase their profits. You cannot wash these pesticides off. These genes continue doing their “work” in your body, in your gut, in your organs, in your heart, in your brain and in your digestive tract. For example, the BT corn genes are designed to dissolve the rootworm beetle’s insides, so that when they eat corn, they either die or cannot reproduce. These bad genes, namely insecticides and herbicides, do not simply disappear or become inactive when humans consume them. These toxic, genetically modified genes dissolve humans’ good gut bacteria, diluting immunity in what becomes a highly acidic environment.

Did you know that each of us has roughly 4 pounds of bacteria in our gut? That’s why they call it a “gut bomb,” when you eat a meal chock full of pesticides, including most gluten, processed sugar and hydrogenated GM oils, and you feel awful for 10 to 20 minutes, or even longer. Your gut and your central nervous system are thrown for a loop, trying to find the pathogens and poisons, all while your immune system is severely compromised, making it more susceptible to colds, viruses, bacteria and other infections – ones you may already have, that then take hold of you.

That’s why doctors often tell patients they may feel a “little sick” or “weak” after a flu shot or vaccine – because you (or your children or babies) have been injected with some of the most lethal neurotoxins on earth, including mercury, formaldehyde and weakened versions of the viruses you most want to avoid. At this time, your body scrambles for nutrients, most likely emptying your reserves, just to fight off these foreign bacteria and GM-derived chemicals and pathogens. Not one MD on the planet will be honest and tell the patient that vaccines severely compromise immunity, sometimes for life (as with many autism cases). Did you know that some autism cases recede when good gut bacteria is replenished and sustained?

Continue Reading At: NaturalNews.com