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Immune boosters

Discussion in 'Antivirals, Antibiotics and Immune Modulators' started by heapsreal, Sep 10, 2009.

  1. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    immune stimulants

    Hi,
    Have just started astragalus, reishi and damiana. I buy the powder in bulk and capsule them myself, its alot cheaper that way too. Im hoping this helps strengthen my immune system which will then stop ebv reactivating. Currently on AV's and have been for about 10 months and after seeing my doc soon, may go off them, so thats my reason for immune stimulants.

    Has anyone used them and had good success with them? Or any other herbs too.
  2. Cort

    Cort Phoenix Rising Founder

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    I haven't used them but I would love to hear how others did - as I am very interested in them as well. I hope others pitch in - thanks for starting this thread.
  3. Andrew

    Andrew Senior Member

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    I'm just getting starting in with the immune system support, so I don't have any good experience yet. But I am looking into what tests I can take so I can track whether the immune system is getting better. One test is Natural Killer cells, but I'm also looking into other parts of the immune system.
  4. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    hi

    lymphocyte sub set test is what i use, can indicate if your immune system is fighting something or is getting run down.
    good luck
  5. Andrew

    Andrew Senior Member

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    Thank You! I just searched using your term and I found what I need! I've already emailed it to my doctor.
  6. klutzo

    klutzo Senior Member

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    Epicor

    I've been taking Reishi, Maitake and Shitake for about two months. I don't see any results yet.

    Have you tried Epicor to raise your NK cells? I've been taking it for over a year and it seems to be doing something. I plan to go off it soon and see if I get worse.


    klutzo
  7. kolowesi

    kolowesi Senior Member

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    Epicor and other immune boosters

    Someone I know bought 50 lbs at the feed store for her "horses."

    So I took 1/2 tsp for about a year. I thought it was doing something, but then had the feeling it stopped working so I went off for a while.

    It may be good to alternate these guys anyway.

    There's a supplement called AHCC that I believe brought up my NK cell function from 7 to 70+. It's very expensive, but I had a cancer scare and took a lot for a while.

    Another mushroom is Maitake D-fraction. Cost effective. I was taking that along with AHCC some of the time, so it may have helped with NK function too.

    Some things have caused me to have an autoimmune reaction: ImmunExtra (pine cone extract) and/or Del-Immune V, and transfer factor for mycoplasma. Also, the avemar messed up my gut, maybe I'm allergic or fructose intolerant.

    Right now, I'm just taking MushRex by Madre Labs. I will let you know as I'm hoping to retest NK function, it was 40 last winter. I didn't maintain the 70+.

    Astragalus is good, but I think I've heard not to stay on it all the time. Golden seal seems to help, but only take it for a week or so, and avoid if you have ragweed allergy.

    Colostrum helps IgG, I take that cause it's fairly inexpensive. My IgG subsets have stayed just barely in normal range, so maybe it is helping.

    Good luck and please let us know how it works out. Great idea to make your own capsules!!

    Kelly
  8. SaraM

    SaraM Senior Member

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    My lymphocytes level is normal. Do you think I still need to do the subsets ? I have never done this test before.
  9. Andrew

    Andrew Senior Member

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    The reason for the subset test is sometimes the immune system is producing too much of one kind and not enough of another.

    Or maybe a better way to explain this is it has been hypothesized that some people with CFS have T Helper cells stuck in a mode that deals with external threats to cells (such as bacteria) and can't switch into the mode where they respond to internal threats (such as cancer and viruses). Because of this (and other possible problems) it is important to look the different types of lymphocytes, instead of just the total.
  10. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    subsets

    cd8 subset can be elevated from reactivated ebv and other viruses. In australia i cant get my ebv igg titre values done, test just say positive or negative, my doc put me onto the subset testing as another way of possibly showing current ebv infection, with antiviral treatment cd8 levels have come down, so my doc is onto something, also general improvement along with improved lab tests.
    Test can also show if your immune system is weak. cd4/cd8 ratio is used in aids patient to diagnose hiv positive or negative, but for us shows our immune system is getting tired. Couple of months ago my cd4/8 ratio was low as well as my neutrophils, this meant my immune system was down/tired, my doc said to use herbs astragalus and reishi which i did, this definately helped strengthen my immune system as these tests improved as well as my cfs symptoms. So a combination of antivirals and herbal immune stimulants have helped me alot.
    good luck!
  11. ggingues

    ggingues $10 gift code at iHerb GAS343 of $40

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    Andrew and heapsreal

    What did you find and email to your Dr? Interested here!

    Heapsreal,

    How about low dose naltrexone (LDN)? I believe it is a immune modulator but not sure if this means also immune stimulant? Would seem so?

    GG
  12. Andrew

    Andrew Senior Member

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    I found the Lymphocyte Subset Panels from Quest

    The only other immune stimulator I know about offhand is BRM4. If I find more I'll post to this thread.
  13. brenda

    brenda Senior Member

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    Anti-viral herbs

    Carnivora (Venus Flytrap Extract) is useful for MS and cancer. It has also been used for other chronics like ulcerative colitis, herpes, chronic arthritis, and immune deficiency, including AIDS. In cases of cancer, it works therapeutically to shrink solid tumors.

    It has antimicrobial properties (research shows it kills the HIV virus in vitro), and analgesic.

    Its main benefit is boosting the immune system (raises the number and activity of T-helper cells and other immune components).
  14. Andrew

    Andrew Senior Member

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    We often have a problem with low natural killer cell counts. So we take immune boosters. I'm taking BRM4. It sounds great on the web site. But I just realized my natural killer cells are still low. Sooooo, well, I guess the proof is in the proof. This stuff is not doing a bang-up job for me.

    Question. Has anyone here ever taken an immune booster and tests showed later that your NK cells improved a significant amount. If so, which one?
  15. Dr. Yes

    Dr. Yes Shame on You

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    Hey Andrew

    Sorry if this is a little OT, but...

    Have you ever had the problem of immune boosting making you worse? It has for me in a couple instances, so I'm leery of supplements (even Echinacea, which I've never tried) or other treatments that are supposed to have that effect.. even though my NK cell activity was low last time it was checked. I've heard this effect reported before; I think the conjecture is that some patients with excess cytokine problems feel even worse if that part of their immune function is boosted (even if NK cell function or number are boosted too). Autoimmune components may get worse too. I don't know if the overall effect would be beneficial in the long run, if one could somehow weather these 'excess activity' problems.
  16. Hysterical Woman

    Hysterical Woman Senior Member

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    Hi Guys,

    I personally believe that the "immune booster" term is frequently misused. The immune system is a complex system and for me, part of mine is very overactive and part is underactive. I used to say that maybe we need are things that are adaptogenic (making parts that are too high lower and raising the parts that are too low). Like so many of the these things, one really has to dig around in the details.

    Take care,

    HW

    ETA adatogenic information from Wiki - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adaptogen
  17. Dr. Yes

    Dr. Yes Shame on You

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    I agree Maxine; the simultaneous under/over active immune system seems to be a common problem in ME/CFS.

    Along with an immune adaptogenic, I wonder if there are treatments that at least boost NK cell activity more selectively, i.e. without increasing cytokine production.
  18. Hysterical Woman

    Hysterical Woman Senior Member

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    Dr. Yes

    Hi Dr. Yes,

    I am also very curious to see if there are treatments that boost NK cell activity more selectively. It is one of those things on my list that I would really like to get into (I am a researcher by nature). I have been so focused on studying magnesium (which has helped me so) and now I am looking closely at B-12. Sigh, unfortunately, like most everybody here, I am limited in what I am able to search for, read, study and understand. And, of course, that situation is complicated by all the misinformation that you can sometimes find on the internet from people trying to sell you stuff.

    I am hoping that maybe others on the forum reading this will have might have done more research in this area and can help us out.

    Regardless of whether XMRV becomes the cause of CFS and/or for those who might test negative for XMRV, getting a handle on one's immune system would still seem to be beneficial. OK, maybe that's an understatement.:Retro smile:

    Take care,

    HW
  19. Andrew

    Andrew Senior Member

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    Yeah, we can't be sure how they work. But I've read that some are immune modulators, and I assume it's possible for this to level out the system.

    Anyway, the two things with NK cells I'm looking at is total count and cytotoxicity (ability to kill target cells).
  20. Hysterical Woman

    Hysterical Woman Senior Member

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    Hi Andrew,

    Thanks for starting this thread, and yes, we can't be sure how they work. I used to like the term immune modulator. To me that meant that it is the same kind of idea as adaptogenic, lower the value if it is high, raise the value if it is low. But in searching around on the internet, I see that some people seem to be using that term as a simple "change" in the value, not the function of moving it higher or lower. I am not sure if that last statement made sense? Hard for me to put into words. I think I understand it in my head.:Retro smile:

    Interesting that you are looking for both the total count and cytotoxicity. I understand getting the total count number, but how is the cytotoxicity measured?

    Thanks,

    Hw

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