What Is POTS??

What Is POTS??

Sunday, December 17, 2017

What You MUST Know If You Don't Have a Gallbladder

Autoimmune Disease Diet or What's Eating You

It's coming up on the new year and I'm not really thinking about New Year's resolutions just a better way to start off next year. This past year along with my other issues I have had a lot of trouble eating and swallowing and generally getting decent nutrition.

A lot of people with autoimmune diseases swear by going off of gluten and sugar and all kinds of things and there is a diet called the AIP diet. I really support doing things that are that drastic unless for some reason the been tested to see if you are gluten intolerant pretty and or lactose intolerant or something like that. The diets call for eliminating pork, shellfish, nightshade vegetables(tomatoes, potatoes, peppers), dairy, eggs, chocolate, nuts, and caffeine sources such as coffee and chocolate for about 90 days.
I have found some things that are scientifically based that a person can add to their diet instead of subtracting from their diet.

In case you don't want to read or just don't have the time, I will be inserting some videos here and there, you can listen to them while you do something else if you don't want to watch either.

There is a condition called MTHFR-GENE-MUTATION. MTHFR is an enzyme in the body, MTHFR is short for Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase.This mutation is associated with autoimmune disease probably for numerous reasons, we don't absorb vitamins, we often don't eat as well as we should(who wants to eat when they are sick?) and it is involved with DNA. DNA plays a big role in autoimmune diseases. “Apoptosis is the highly organized process of programmed cell death in which the cell degrades the nuclear DNA and signals for phagocytosis. In people with SLE and other autoimmune disorders this process is thought to be defective, causing either an increase in cell death and/or a decrease in the rate of dead cell clearance.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-dsDNA_antibodies

MTHFR Mutation, Symptoms and Diet: What You Need to Know

MTHFR Mutation and FOLATE

If you have the MTHFR mutation, and I have read that as many as 30% of people do, then you don't metabolize folate and folic acid correctly. They are both forms of B9.

As I wrote above, MTHFR is an enzyme in the body, MTHFR is short for Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase.

Methylation is a process in the body that turns certain genes and off and it also repairs damaged DNA. It also converts folate and folic acid into the form the body can use called 5-MTHF.

You can see how having a mutation in this gene could cause problems. Some people don't have symptoms at all but depending on the variation of mutation you could have problems.

One of the purposes of the 5-MTHF is to break down homocysteine. Homocysteine is produced naturally in the body and if it isn't broken down it can damage the artery lining and elevated homocysteine levels are a risk factor for strokes, heart disease and other types of cardiovascular disease as well as Alzheimer’s disease, hearing loss, macular degeneration, and cancer.

“People with very high homocysteine levels should be carefully evaluated for other factors known to affect homocysteine, such as:” (https://rarediseases.info.nih.gov/diseases/10953/mthfr-gene-mutation

  • Chronic conditions (obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, physical inactivity, high blood pressure)
  • Medications (atorvastatin, fenofibrate, methotrexate, and nicotinic acid)
  • Dietary deficiencies (folate, vitamin B6, vitamin B12)
  • Smoking
  • Advanced age
  • Low thyroid hormones (hypothyroidism)

Another condition that the MTHFR mutation is associated with is Autoimmune thyroiditis (AT), also known as Hashimoto's disease. (http://www.endocrine-abstracts.org/ea/0026/ea0026p110.htm)

It is also associated with lupus and APS.(antiphospholipid antibody syndrome symptoms)

IBS and Crohn's Disease or any other condition that causes you not to be able to absorb your vitamins and nutrients properly.

“People with malabsorptive disorders—including tropical sprue, celiac disease, and inflammatory bowel disease might have lower folate absorption than people without these disorders Diminished gastric acid secretion associated with atrophic gastritis, gastric surgery, and other conditions can also reduce folate absorption.”(People with malabsorptive disorders)

And last but not least, MTHFR is associated with  P.O.T.S, P.A.N.S, and P.A.N.D.A.S.
(Methylation and P.O.T.S.)

I am not sure how you can get your doctor to test you for the MTHFR mutation but I have read that the 23 And Me test will show it. If you have an autoimmune disease and high homocysteine levels and folate levels are low, you might want to look into it. You are more likely to get them to check your homocysteine levels and if they are high then you might have a folate absorption problem. Meanwhile, the foods that help aren't going to hurt to eat and at least it isn't eliminating anything.

Folate is important for the formation of cells during the cell division process and the formation of DNA. If this is impaired it initiates a process that can lead to megaloblastic anemia.

If you or someone close to you has had a baby, you have probably heard of folic acid supplements. If you don't have enough folic acid during a pregnancy it can cause neural tube defects.

Folate is better for you than folic acid. And it is usually better to get your nutrients from food than from a pill. Folate is the natural form of vitamin B9 found in plant and animal foods. Folic acid is the synthetic form of the vitamin that you find in supplements and fortified foods. The body can use folate better because that's how it is designed to work and it gets rid of the excess through your urine. Folic acid can actually build up in your body.

These are foods you can eat that have folate in them:

  • Beans and lentils and peas
  • Raw spinach and other dark leafy greens
  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli and cauliflower
  • Avocado
  • Okra
  • Corn
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Squash
  • Beets
  • Oranges, grapefruit, mangoes, papaya, strawberries, raspberries
Vitamin B2 and B6 help your body make 5-MTHF and there are foods that contain those too.

Good sources of vitamin B2 are:

Beef and lamb
  • Oily fish
  • Hard-boiled eggs
  • Almonds
  • Mushrooms
  • Spinach
  • Natural yogurt

Good sources of vitamin B6 are:

  • Turkey, chicken, pork, and beef
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pistachio nuts
  • Oily fish
  • Bananas
  • Avocados
  • Spinach

You can find out more about Folate like the Recommended Daily Amounts put out by the FDA here:

This is pretty complicated. Because MTHFR causes problems with B12 absorption too. The following are the most common symptoms of megaloblastic anemia: Weak, Numbness or tingling in hands and feet, Difficulty walking, Nausea, Decreased appetite, Weight loss, Irritability, Lack of energy or tiring easily (fatigue), Diarrhea, smooth and tender tongue, Increased heart rate (tachycardia).

If you have Vitamin B12 deficiency, then you must find out the cause and then:

1.Eat more Vitamin B12-rich foods (liver, wild caught fish, grass-fed lamb and beef)
2. Probiotic (increases absorption)
3.Get inflammatory foods out of your diet
4. Supplementation (VitaminB12, B complex, desiccated liver supplement)
5.Get blood work and consider being tested for MTHFR 

Causes of B12 Deficiency and MTHFR Mutations

Symptoms Diagnosis and Treatment of B12 deficiency


People with autoimmune diseases have an improvement of their symptoms when they take fish oil.
People with rheumatoid arthritis showed a 73% decrease in their drug treatment use and 60% of patients who had Crohn’s disease experienced a decrease in their relapse rate. Dietary n-6 and n-3 fatty acids in immunity and autoimmune disease

I usually have this one covered because I take a combination fish/borage/flaxseed oil supplement. But I love salmon too. http://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/treatments/natural/supplements-herbs/guide/borage-oil.php

Antioxidants are supposed to reduce oxidative stress which causes damage to your tissues and inflammation. Those are both problems with autoimmune diseases.

Diets with antioxidants and lower in fat promote a healthier immune system and antioxidants help prevent loss of cognitive function which is also a problem with autoimmune disease.

Antioxidants vitamins act as anti-inflammatories and they inhibit the cytokines which signal inflammatory response in autoimmune diseases. Curcumin or turmeric are herbs which are antioxidants that act in the same manner as drugs like aspirin. http://www.arthritis.org/living-with-arthritis/treatments/natural/supplements-herbs/guide/turmeric.php

When some types of oxygen molecules travel freely in the body they cause oxidative damage, or they cause the formation of free radicals.

Everyone has free radicals in their body. Free radicals are atoms or groups of atoms with an odd (unpaired) number of electrons and can be formed when oxygen interacts with certain molecules.All free radicals aren't bad. The liver makes and uses some of them to detoxify the body. And white blood cells use free radicals to destroy bacteria, viruses or damaged cells. Once formed these highly reactive radicals can start a chain reaction, like dominoes. Their chief danger comes from the damage they can do when they react with important cellular components such as DNA, or the cell membrane. Cells may function poorly or die if this occurs. To prevent free radical damage the body has a defense system of antioxidants. The body makes some of these antioxidants itself, but we have to get the rest from our diets. Antioxidants stop the chain reaction before vital molecules are damaged.

If there are more free radicals in the body than there are antioxidants it can cause accelerated aging or damaged and mutated cells, harmful genes inside your DNA can be activated and your immune system becomes overworked.

Antioxidants & Free Radicals Explained

The antioxidants that you need to supply with your diet are Vitamin E, Vitamin C, and Beta-carotene.

Vitamin E: d-alpha tocopherol. A fat soluble vitamin. It is found in nuts, seeds, vegetable and fish oils, whole grains, fortified cereals, and apricots.

Vitamin C: Ascorbic acid is a water-soluble vitamin. It is found in citrus fruits and juices, green peppers, cabbage, spinach, broccoli, kale, cantaloupe, kiwi, and strawberries.

Beta-carotene is a precursor to vitamin A (retinol). It is found in liver, egg yolk, milk, butter, spinach, carrots, squash, broccoli, yams, tomato, cantaloupe, peaches, and grains. Because beta-carotene is converted to vitamin A by the body there is no set requirement. Instead, the RDA is expressed as retinol equivalents (RE), to clarify the relationship. (NOTE: Vitamin A has no antioxidant properties and can be quite toxic when taken in excess.) http://www.rice.edu/~jenky/sports/antiox.html

The level of antioxidants in food is evaluated with an ORAC score, which stands for “oxygen radical absorption capacity.

Below are some of the top antioxidant foods by weight:

  1. Goji berries: 4,310 ORAC score
  2. Wild blueberries: 9,621 ORAC score
  3. Dark chocolate: 20,816 ORAC score
  4. Pecans: 17,940 ORAC score
  5. Artichoke (boiled): 9,416 ORAC score
  6. Elderberries: 14,697 ORAC score
  7. Kidney beans: 8,606 ORAC score
  8. Cranberries: 9,090 ORAC score
  9. Blackberries: 5,905 ORAC score
  10. Cilantro: 5,141 ORAC score

Some herbs are also high in antioxidants. Below are ten of the highest in antioxidants.

  1. Clove:314,446 ORAC score
  2. Cinnamon: 267,537 ORAC score
  3. Oregano: 159,277 ORAC score
  4. Turmeric: 102,700 ORAC score
  5. Cocoa: 80,933 ORAC score
  6. Cumin: 76,800 ORAC score
  7. Parsley (dried): 74,349 ORAC score
  8. Basil: 67,553 ORAC score
  9. Ginger: 28,811 ORAC score
  10. Thyme: 27,426 ORAC score

Which Food Has Most Antioxidants? You Won't Believe The Answer!

Looking for a list of anti-inflammatory foods, I found that many of them were on these other lists, meaning they are good for more than one thing. https://draxe.com/anti-inflammatory-foods/

  1. Green leafy vegetables
  2. Bok Choy
  3. Celery
  4. Beets
  5. Broccoli
  6. Blueberries
  7. Pineapple
  8. Salmon
  9. Bone Broth
  10. Walnuts
  11. Coconut oil
  12. Chia seeds
  13. Flaxseeds
  14. Termuric
  15. Ginger

24 ANTI INFLAMMATORY FOODS with CRAZY Powerful Healings Benefits

Magnesium is good for many things.

  1. It can help keep your blood sugar balanced
  2. It helps with energy production in your cells
  3. It can calm your nervous system down
  4. It helps with pain and muscle tension
  5. It helps with joint and ligament flexibility
  6. It keeps your calcium balanced and is good for bone density
  7. And it helps with sleep and insomnia
  8. It helps with brain fog (I definitely need help here)
  9. It can help with mood and stress, depression and anxiety
  10. Helps with lowering blood pressure and heart attack risk
  11. It helps with digestive motility and constipation

Some people take really large amounts of magnesium or swear by topical magnesium. But if you get too much magnesium(over 5,000 mg/day) you can end up with some side effects you don't want.

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal cramping
  • Vomiting
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Heart attack

Top 12 Best Foods For Magnesium

This website has a lot of good links for what to eat and what not to eat if you have arthritis or autoimmune diseases. 

I have kidney stones. Yay Me!! Apparently, many of these foods are also good for that. Magnesium and B vitamins help improve the alkali content of the body and reduce free oxalate and uric acid production. If you are on a low-oxalate diet you are supposed to eat lots of bok choy, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, grass-fed butter and cheese and flax seeds which are low oxalate and high in magnesium and B vitamins.

Also, you should eat non-processed sea salt and pink salts like Himalayan sea salt. I am doing that anyway because I have POTS.

MTHFR and Oxalates: Understanding the Gut-Kidney Axis

The Down Side to High Oxalates: Problems with Sulfate, B6, Gut and Methylation

If all of this wasn't enough information for you, here are some more links. They are lupus related, but usually that doesn't preclude being useful to people with other problems.

Johns Hopkins Hospital--Lupus Diet

Diet Tips for Lupus

Web MD--Lupus Diet and Nutrition

Dr. Axe--Lupus Diet

Lupus Foundation--Diet and nutrition with lupus

Lupus Foundation--exercise-and-nutrition


Eat This, Not That--The 20 Best Foods To Fight Lupus