AMUK Healthy Living Blog

Nov
07

Proton Pump Inhibitors!

Author : Dr A Econs
Related Conditions : Irritable Bowel Syndrome

British Medical Journall article -4 November 2017 states Increased risk of cancer from PPI’s (proton pump inhibitors) used for reflux.

The journal Gut published research which indicates an increased risk for cancer of 2.44 times, associated with PPI’s for reflux, which was not found in the use of H2 antagonists, such as Ranitidine.

I wonder if some of these findings have also been affected by the fact that any long term “suppressed” inflammation caused by the immune system, is in itself a risk factor for cancer?

A comment in the BMJ 4 November 2017 advised to avoid antibiotics for sinus infections.  NICE new guidelines recommend oral decongestants and paracetamol for acute sinusitis and avoid antibiotics.

 

Tell this to a patient who has been unable to breathe and has been suffering with facial pain for a couple of weeks!!

I am not recommending antibiotics to patients with sinusitis, we are all too familiar with the problems with overuse of antibiotics.  However, we often manage to prevent upper respiratory inflammation, using the positive effects of dietary changes, methods of desensitisation and sometimes, anti-fungals if moulds are suspected.

Prevention and treating the cause is always preferable to being reactive and giving symptom relief.

Oct
27

Allergy Growth & Allergy Causes

Author : Hazel Econs

 

Two fascinating articles written by snack safely.com about allergies, that I think you will appreciate reading.  

Allergy cells
The first speaks of research that indicates that 45% of adults with food allergies develop them in adulthood.  
Growth in Allergies

The second shows there are studies indicating that the causes of allergies involve a complex interplay between genetics and our environment.  Hopefully this research and finding will lead to treatment of food allergies and even prevention.Causes of Allergies

If you need help with your allergies of intolerances please do contact us.

 Lady Gaga’s hit track Til it Happens to You, although not written about her recent revelation on social media that she has Fibromyalgia (FMS), could aptly describe her experience of living with it.
Lady Gaga
The condition is giving her such “severe physical pain that it has impacted her ability to perform” so she has had to cancel her European tour due to begin next week.  

FMS is a chronic condition that causes pain and swelling in points all over the body.  It is hard to diagnose and treat and many people with the condition find it difficult to get doctors to take their symptoms seriously as there is nothing to see, only for the patient to feel - constant widespread pain.  Along with the pain comes extreme tiredness, muscles aches, poor sleep and concentration.

FMS is typically suffered by people in the 30-50 age group.  As there is no definitive test, it is hard to estimate how many people really suffer with the condition but it is thought to possibly be 5 million.  In an attempt to raise awareness about this life changing illness, Lady Gaga has just released a documentary called Gaga: Five Foot Two.

Although there is no conventional medical treatment for the condition,  the experience of some medical professionals has been that there is a noticeable link between diet, infectious agents and toxic load with fibromyalgia.  As with CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome) this immune system problem can be helped by adjusting ones diet and lifestyle.  We often see an improvement (or reversal) of the condition with regular use of intravenous infusions of nutrients and/or some methods of immunotherapy.

We have guide dogs, hearing dogs and now allergy dogs.  We are all too aware how life-changing guide dogs and hearing dogs can be for their owners giving them their freedom and independence.

Golden Retriever

Six year old boy, Mason, who has suffered thousands of allergic reactions, even anaphlayatic reactions that have been life threatening, is about to have his own ‘guardian’ in the shape of a Golden Retriever called Storm.  

Storm is being trained to detect changes in Mason that are a sign he is about to have an allergic reaction and to warn Mason and others around him.   Mason is allergic to dogs, so it took 18 months to up build his immunity to the breed first.

How wonderful it will be if Storm can give Mason the opportunity to go to friends birthday parties and outings as any other little boy. Let's hope this is just the beginning of dogs that can help many serious allergy sufferers.

Life Saving Allergy Dog

Aug
23

Peanut Allergy Breakthrough

Author : Hazel Econs
Related Conditions : Anaphylaxis (Nut Allergy)

An allergy to peanuts is recognised as one of the most severe food allergies due to its prevalence, persistency and potential severity of allergic reaction which can result in anaphylaxis.  The principle treatment at the moment is the use of an Epipen injection which must be carried at all times.  

However, Australian researchers have carried out a small clinical trial which has seen positive results in 82% of the children on the trial who had received the immunotherapy treatment had become tolerant to peanuts.

At Allergy Medical UK we are aware of how effective immunotherapy is in ‘re-educating’ the immune system so we are really excited about this treatment and hope it will be widely available very soon.  Read here :New Peanut Allergy Treatment

A number of British allergy specialists were recently asked to share their views on allergy, its management and any optional measures to prevent it.

Their views have been published in the magazine of Champneys, a group of health resorts well known for promoting healthy living:

Link to Champneys Article
It is quite clear that, whilst a number of safe and effective methods of prevention of allergies exists, only a fraction of doctors in the UK know of them, recommend them or use them.

Jul
19

Can Diet Help Alzheimer's?

Author : Dr Apelles Econs

Surprise, surprise! Mediterranean diet may be reducing risk of Alzheimer's.

 Do read :  Mediterranean Diet &Alzheimer's

I must have seen at least 10 studies in the last two years that extol the virtues of eating lots of salads, vegetables, olive oil and fish, excluding most other common foods in order to reduce the risk of dementia or improve mental faculties, when Alzheimer's has been diagnosed.
In a way this is not as extraordinary as it sounds: similar diets have been proven effective in reversing several so-called "auto-immune" diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, Crohn's disease.  In clinics like ours, such diets have been used because they are known to help people with cancer, multiple sclerosis, cardio-vascular disease, hypertension, depression - do I need to go on, you get the gist?  Doctors using similar diets over the last four decades, have often been called "quacks" by their learned colleagues.

The burning question is, "how much does it take for the medical profession to wake up and start using these methods which are simple, patient-enpowering, reduce doctors' workload and NHS costs?".

The well known 20th Century philosopher Carl Poppa observed: "True ignorance is not the absence of knowledge but the persistent denial of facts"!

 

Jul
02

Asthma Awareness

Author : Hazel Econs
Related Conditions : Asthma Symptoms & Treatment

I couldn’t help but be touched by the recent item on the BBC news about the death four years ago of Lisa Dennis at the age of 10 years.  

Lisa died following an asthma attack.  Although she had an inhaler for an allergy, her parents were not aware she was an asthmatic.  According to her family the word “asthma” was never mentioned.

Dr Satish Rao of the Birmingham Children’s Hospital, who looks after difficult asthma cases, says “one of the biggest frustrations for us is the complacency among healthcare professionals about asthma in children and young people.  We have tried to convince professionals that asthma is a serious illness.”  Dr Rao believes many deaths could be prevented by better information about when to seek medical help.

Asthma UK’s clinic lead, Dr Andy Whittamore, says there is a lot of concern by both parents and children to use the steroid medication properly as steroids have had bad press.

How much better it would be if the cause of the asthma was diagnosed and treated, rather than just symptom control with medication.  

The aim of our clinics is to identify the cause which for asthma could be inhalant allergies, i.e. dust, house dust mites, pets or moulds; or it could be dietary.  Some patients find that their symptoms get worse after eating certain foods or additives.

We recommend skin prick tests or blood tests to identify the culprits if inhalant allergies are suspected. If this is the case they can be treated with desensitisation if avoidance is not possible.  If foods is the cause, dietary changes can we made or, if impractical, desensitisation can also be used.

Cupcakes have become extremely popular, thanks to Mary Berry to a large extent.  As delicious as they may be, one in particular has caused a rise in a food allergies.  

 

Red Velvet Cupcake

The red velvet cupcake contains cochineal as its food colourant.  Cochineal is an insect, mainly found in South America and Mexico, that produces carmine acid to deter its predators.  This acid can be extracted from the body and eggs of the insect and when mixed with aluminium or calcium salts makes the carmine dye or cochineal.  This is used primarily as a food colourant and in lipsticks.

As Dr Isabel Skypala, consultant allergy dietician at the Royal Brompton Hospital explains, our diets have changed according to the different foods we are exposed to.  This has meant that there food allergies now seen have also changed and also increased.

 Cupcakes are fuelling rise of allergies

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