inflammation

Methylation and Histamine sensitivity

Do you have a sensitivity to pollen in the air at various times of the year? How about skin reactions to certain foods or things you touch that can respond to claritine or other antihistamine medications?  Watery eyes, runny nose or post nasal drip? Do you have a weak stomach? Maybe a history of panic attacks, depression or mental fatigue? If so, you might have a sensitivity to (or build up of) Histamine - a chemical naturally produced by the body, and consumed in foods. The problem is often a genetic limitation in processing and excreting histamine from the body, which is often linked to a process called under methylation. Undermethylation and its many consequences can cause a wide variety of symptoms in different people.

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Alkaline Diet

What is it? The alkaline diet is an old approach to managing chronic illness and inflammation. Popularised by Chiropractor Dr. Theodore Baroody in his book "Alkalise or die" and later on Dr. Robert Young in his book "the pH miracle", it was based upon the writings of earlier natural medicine practitioners such as chiropractor Dr. Bernard Jensen and JH Kellogg. The central premise is that much of the food we eat today (grains, processed foods and drinks, meat) along with a steep rise in pharmaceutical use has resulted in chemical imbalances in the body. Our organs only tolerate a very narrow range of pH (the measure of whether a system is alkaline or acidic) so when our body is flooded with acid forming chemicals, our alkaline maintenance processes become stressed, resulting in inefficient removal of excess acid. Because this acid is toxic, the body deposits this excess acidity throughout the tissues, which over time causes neuromuscular inflammation, brain chemistry changes and systemic arthritis. Eventually, even the organs begin to fail. By altering the foods we consume to minimise those that cause acid formation, the body is given time to excrete excess acids from the system, which results in improved health and vitality. In principle these alkaline-forming foods are largely comprised of fruits and vegetables and should form 80% of the diet. Acid forming foods such as meats, grains and processed foods should never make up more than 20% of your diet. Dairy foods range from strongly acid forming when in the form of cheeses, and less so for yoghurts and soft cheeses, while nuts and seeds tend to be somewhat neutral to acid. Generally, the diet should be largely vegetarian, with occasional meats and whole grains to provide additional nutrients. Some foods which are acids themselves (such as lemon juice and apple cider vinegar) break down into alkaline residues in the body, while other foods such as sugar forms acid, so it is important to obtain a chart of these foods to help you in your choices. In addition, many proponents of this diet also recommend a water ionisation unit to produce ionised alkaline water for consumption, however the evidence for its value is limited. On a similar note- bottled water sold as alkaline water is little more than just ordinary water with increased calcium carbonate, so spending money on this is not likely to be helpful. Pros: Fairly easy once you know the food placings Increases dramatically the amount of plant food in the diet Eliminates processed food Has wider health effects as well as weight loss Doesn't calorie count or emphasise portion sizes Cons: Can be hard to make the changes needed for some people Can lead to a healing crisis early on (withdrawal headaches etc.)  

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