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Lack of proteases (pancreatic enzymes) and the symptoms of CFS

Discussion in 'Gastrointestinal and Urinary' started by Annesse, Dec 28, 2011.

  1. Annesse

    Annesse Senior Member

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    I have been posting on how the lack of proteases (pancreatic enzymes that break down proteins) would lead to CFS. The posts can be found on the threads: "The difference between MS and ME" and "What causes Sjogren's syndrome". In the previous posts, we identified the lack of carnitine in CFS and showed how this lack would lead to mitochondrial dysfunction. We traced this lack of carnitine directly back to an inability to break down dietary proteins. We also traced low vitamin D, low iron, dysautonomia, low dopamine, spinal cord changes, lack of vitamin B12, the connection to hypothyroidism and low adrenal function, primary biliary cirrhosis, the connection to Sjogren's, dysregulated calcium, low magnesium (which we showed was linked to the mitral valve prolapse often found in CFS), lack of tryptophan, explained chemical sensitivity, the connection to bacteria and viruses, Restless Legs Syndrome, peripheral neuropathy, lack of phenylalanine, dysregulated tumor necrosis factor (cytokine), the depression, insomnia, confusion, anxiety, brain fog, fatigue, low zinc, the spinal fluid study findings, and white matter lesions directly back to these missing protease.

    In addition to carnitine, another critical component necessary for proper function of the mitochondria is Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10). It acts as an essential cofactor to produce ATP (adenosine triphosphate), which is the currency of energy in the body. To produce ATP, mitochondria need certain essential raw nutrients, such as carnitine and CoQ10. CoQ10 also functions as an antioxidant.

    A recent study found that plasma CoQ10 was significantly lower in CFS patients. ("Coenzyme Q10 Deficiency in ME/CFS" by Michael Maes, et al.) It stated, "Up to 44.8% of patients with ME/CFS had values beneath the lowest plasma CoQ10 value detected in the normal controls.."

    CoQ10 is a fat-soluble compound synthesized by the body and also consumed in the diet. A report from Iowa State University lists beef, chicken, pork, and fish as the foods with the highest levels of CoQ10.In a normal person, CoQ10 can be synthesized, but it requires the presence of one of two amino acids we have found lacking in CFS, phenylalanine and tyrosine. The Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University states, "The biosythesis of coenzyme Q10 involves three major steps: 1) synthesis of the benzoquinone structure from either TYROSINE OR PHENYLALANINE." Tyrosine is derived from phenylalanine and phenylalanine is found in high protein foods. Without the ability to break down high protein foods, you would not have the necessary amino acids to produce CoQ10.
    Lou likes this.
  2. DrD

    DrD

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    hi Annesse, I am from several of the B12 deficiency/Freddd protocols sites. I recently started to take digestive enzymes. I don't have CFS, but did suffer from a horrendous B12 deficiency incident about 2 years ago. I still have sensory nerve issues down both legs, but the Freddd protocol has helped. I have always suspected that the unexplained B12 deficiency issue was due to digestive gut issues and I added the digestive enzymes with that though in mind. I also am taking them for control of rosacea and leaky gut. I have had only positive results so far from the digestive enzymes. I think this thread warrant much further investigation, as I believe that gut issues are behind many of the medical issues that we see today.


    By the way, they never could find any viable clear medical condition for my depleted B12 levels. No PA, no out of wack intrinsic factor Ab titers. I am more than convinced that gut issues and lack of digestive enzymes were behind my B12 and vitamin D deficiencies. (those were the two that were measured, there were probably others that were low)
  3. globalpilot

    globalpilot Senior Member

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    Thanks. I'll go back and read those posts. I didn't inititally because the titles didn't catch my eye. Pancreatic enzymes is a topic I am very interested in so had I known that was the topic I would have read them.
  4. Annesse

    Annesse Senior Member

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    Hi globalpilot, very nice to meet you! Here is a study that will tie your low B12 in with pancreatic proteases. Without proteases, you would not be able to release B12. We can link so many of the symptoms of CFS back to the lack of B12.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC371670/

    As the study states, these enzymes are "essential determining factors for transport and absorption of cobalamin in man."
  5. Annesse

    Annesse Senior Member

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    Hi again global, I just reread your post and noticed you mentioned your vitamin D is low. Low vitamin D is found in CFS also. The explanation for this is in the MS thread, but in case you miss it, here is how it would tie back to the inability to break down proteins. Vitamin D metabolism is dependant on blood borne calcium. Here is a quote from Lita Lee,Ph.D.

    "Ninety-nine percent of the body calcium is in the bones and teeth. The other one percent, found in the blood, is just as important because it is essential in the blood clotting mechanism, muscle and nerve function, VITAMIN D FUNCTION, and the function of hormones that control calcium metabolism (called parathyroid hormones). Of the one percent of calcium in the blood, half is PROTEIN-BOUND and half is ionized. BOTH REQUIRE ADEQUATE PROTEIN DIGESTION. If you are deficient in protein because you can't digest it, you cannot carry protein-bound calcium. If you lack optimum acidity from inadequate digestion of protein, you will not have enough ionized calcium. In either case, you are a candidate for arthritis."
  6. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Hi annesse,

    Are you familiar with integrative or functional medicine ? Their approach with each patient is to
    discover each patients deficiencies. Because, while there are studies saying that this or that is
    comon in cfs, the definition of "cfs" is so half assed that these studies are completely useless.
    Most, if not all of here know the definition of cfs is a joke. The complete lack of referring to known medical findings
    makes this obvious. Pacific labs testing and testing for dysautonomia
    aren't even included ..

    The basic treatments used by these doctors for all patients include testing food intolerances,
    nutritional deficiencies, leaky gut, candidiasis, parasites ,etc. This will restore some "cfs" patients health.
    If not, as in my case, we start looking for oddities ..

    Tc .. X
  7. Nielk

    Nielk

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    It is not a perfect science with these alternative practitioners as far as testing for food intolerances and defficiencies. I have gone to a couple and at first took their word for what they were telling me but, didn't see much (or any improvement). Furthermore, I caught them with different ersults for the same pathogen
    on me. I don't know maybe our bodies react differently at different points of time? but, then, how can you effectively treat us? I lost faith in them when this occured. Specifically, when I first started with one, he wanted to test all the meds I was on to see if they agree with me. He found that some did and some didn't. Three months later, I brought one of the meds over which he said was fine and he tested it again (probably forgot what he told me at first) and said that it was reacting very badly. At that point, I realized I was just throwing my money out and stopped going to him. This is just my personal opinion.
  8. Glynis Steele

    Glynis Steele Senior Member

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    Annesse,

    Are you saying that CFS patients might suffer from exocrine pancreatic dysfunction?
  9. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Hi neilk,

    Was that muscle testing ? I don't believe in it and my doctor doesn't use it. Integrative
    or functional doctors depend on blood, urine, stool, saliva, radiological exams and what
    the patient's body tells them on sight. On sight meaning, while my labs were negative for
    casein, my shiners spoke volumes ..

    No test is perfect all the time so incorporating the results with listening
    to our bodies is required. Listening becomes much easier when most of
    our symptoms are gone.

    Finding a doctor who knows what tests to run and how to interpret these is the key.
    My doctor has gone through the basics with me and now we're working on what myhill calls
    the bolt-ons .. I just love that term .. Lol

    I was doing well, but still had oh and pots, until I got h pylori and some parasites in september.
    I also just learned that I consistently have gluten antibodies just from gluten cross contamination. I was 99% paleo but It's whole
    foods for me now ..

    Tc ..x
  10. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

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    Even if she says so, it wouldn't make much of a difference. I was diagnosed with pancreatic dysfunction, took high doses of all kinds of prescribed enzymes for years but had no big change. This is not meant to be offensive but people come up with all kinds of theories. The problem I see is that there are probably thousands of PMEs who take B12 and who take enzymes but NONE get cured. It's not that easy.
    ahimsa and Nielk like this.
  11. Glynis Steele

    Glynis Steele Senior Member

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    Sorry Waverunner,

    I didn't mean for it to sound like the be all and end all, but maybe as part of a bigger picture. Can I ask how were you diagnosed with pancreatic dysfunction? Was it by a GI?

    What I have been looking at is the furthering of de Meirleir's d-lactic acid bacteria in CFS patients. D-lactic acid is produced by certain bacteria in the gut, and exocrine pancreatic deficency is a known cause of d-lactic acidosis. D-lactic acid also might be implicated in b12 deficiency, at least in short bowel patients. In CFS patients, perhaps this works as a bacterial overgrowth in the small bowel, stopping the absorption of b12 and maybe fermentation of carbs too.

    My working theory anyways! :D
  12. aprilk1869

    aprilk1869 Senior Member

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    I'm just re-reading one of the other threads and this was her reply regarding supplemental enzymes:-

  13. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Good point. I'm not into being offensive either but many of us are fighting for our lives
    and all these one fix theories are holding us back.

    In some cases of cfs, because as most of us know it's a wastebasket diagnosis, it may be as simple as
    needing a diet change or supplements but for those of us with more complicated me
    it's more involved. Which, imho, is why you need a doctor, integrative or functional are better educated, who can order and comprehend the proper tests. Biologicals functions and Chemicals interact and they're trained to decifer this. Imho, Picking one
    or two or three chemicals to focus on is a waste of time.

    btw, I have celiac disease and hyperinsulinemia and my labs for pancreatic enzymes are good.
    Tc .. X
  14. Annesse

    Annesse Senior Member

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    Thanks aprik1869 for answering the question about enzymes and supplements. Waverunner is right. Thousands of people with CFS and other autoimmune diseases have tested low on B12, vitamin D etc., taken supplements and enzymes etc. and not gotten better. Is there is reason for that? Well, take vitamin D for instance. Most people know that if they take vitamin D in supplement form, they will need to combine it with calcium. As I stated above, blood borne calcium is necessary for the proper metabolism of vitamin D. But what is responsible for proper metabolism of the calcium? Blood borne calcium is protein-bound. So, in order to carry it, you would need to be able to digest dietary proteins. The end result of not being able to properly metabolize vitamin D is that you will be low on vitamin D. Will taking more vitamin D solve the problem? Not at all, because you still won't have the ability to metabolize it until you restore your body's ability to digest proteins. In CFS and other autoimmune diseases, you have lost the ability to bind, transport and metabolize nutrients.

    There is another side to this coin, that most people are not aware of. Taking unbound nutrients into your body can cause a great deal of harm. The inability to regulate calcium for instance, leads to arthritis because the calcium is then deposited in your joints and tissues. Is the answer then to take MORE calcium for your body to deposit in your joints and tissues?

    Taking vitamin D in supplement form that you cannot bind or transport can lead to another autoimmune disease called sarcoidoisis. Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory condition that produces tiny lumps of cells called granulomas in various organs of the body. These granulomas clump together into large or small groups, resulting in organ damage. Dysregulated calcium and vitamin D metabolism are well-recognized features of sarcoidosis.

    Excess vitamin D and calcium that cannot be properly transported into your cells will build up in your heart and kidneys.This is also true for other animals, such as rodents. That is why cholecalciferol (vitamin D3) in the main ingredient in many rat poisons. Here is some information how how it poisons a rodent. It targets the same organs in rodents as it does it humans.

    "Rodents are somewhat more susceptible to high doses than other species, and cholecalciferol has been used in poison bait for the control of these pests. It has been claimed that the compound is less toxic to non-target species. However, in practice it has been found that use of cholecalciferol in rodenticides represents a significant hazard to other animals, such as dogs and cats. "Cholecalciferol produces hypercalcemia, which results in systemic calcification of soft tissue, leading to renal failure, cardiac abnormalities, hypertension, CNS depression, and GI upset. Signs generally develop within 18-36 hr of ingestion and can include depression, anorexia, polyuria, and polydipsia."[14]

    The argument will be made, I am sure ,that only high does will lead to these conditions in humans. Nonetheless, I can not think of anything else that would kill a rodent or other animal, such as a dog or a cat, that we should be taking into our bodies.
    merylg and Waverunner like this.
  15. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

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    Glynis Steele: Diagnosis was by measuring pancreatic enzyme output through stool analysis. However my latest tests came back normal. I know that these tests can easily go wrong and that there is always the possibility of having a day with low pancreatic output of enzymes. Taking the enzymes without improvement however show that this probably was not the cause. I completely agree with you however, that digestion is impaired in nearly all PMEs, so low enzyme output can play an important role.

    aprilk1869: Interesting quote, thank you. How do we increase DNase 1?

    xchocoholic: I agree. While I do think that supplements can help, I also think that many people highly exaggerate when they speak about the potential of those supplements to cure certain diseases.

    Annesse: True, things are more complicated as they look. I didn't know that cholecalciferol is used to poison rodents but this is very interesting. There are always two sides to a coin.

    "In CFS and other autoimmune diseases, you have lost the ability to bind, transport and metabolize nutrients." In my eyes you are sooo right on this one. It describes my situation perfectly. From HCL to enzymes to probiotics to vitamins to minerals, I tried everything to get things going again but it just doesn't work. Many things even made things worse while a multivitamin/mineral/probiotic every now and then seems to have a positive effect. Lately I keep drawing parallels to HIV in order to make things more understandable. The first cases of HIV are dated back to 1902 to 1920 but let's imagine we have 1960. Moreover let's imagine we have one person who just got infected by HIV. After some time the first symptoms will appear and he will go to doctors. The problem: There is neither a test nor is there any treatment for HIV. If we could send this poor person one and only one small text message, we could tell him: "You have HIV and there is nothing you can do right now. You will die from it. Have a nice day." Although we are correct, he won't believe us and in his position probably most of us wouldn't believe this stupid text message. He will run from doctor to doctor, he will take supplement over supplement, he will probably become desperate at some point and he will try all kinds of treatments. In the end he will die from HIV. PMEs also look for diagnosis and treatment but what if diagnosis becomes available in 2015 and treatment in 2016? Everything you do until then will be wasted. Everything the HIV person from 1960 did was useless. We cannot be sure of course, if it is the same now as it was back then but the possibility exists (although it's not a very pleasant one). So you can try to do what you can, live a healthy life and do the things that help you but you will not get cured until the diagnosis/treatment becomes available.
  16. Annesse

    Annesse Senior Member

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    Hi Wave, your post is very thought provoking. I think,though, that we could now turn the coin over and see something very different. The conditions I listed in the first paragraph of this thread , from autonomic dysfunction (and all of the symptoms that would arise) to restless legs syndrome are ALL symptoms and conditions of the inability to break down dietary proteins. Now, are they also the exact same symptoms of CFS? In the end, every single symptom, every valid scientific finding, and every other connection (such as the link to hypothyroidism or interstitial cystitis) in CFS will be shown to also be symptoms of the inability to digest proteins. So, what are you then looking at, CFS or the inability to break down proteins? If there is no distinction between the two, then there is only one possible answer.
  17. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

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    Hi Annesse,

    so how would a successful treatment for CFS/ME look like if the inability to break down proteins is the cause of ME/CFS?
  18. Annesse

    Annesse Senior Member

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    Hi Waverunner, if you look at the study I posted on B12 and proteases (Cobalamin Malabsorption Due to Nondegradation of R Proteins in the Human Intestine) you will see that that not only is it necessary to replace these enzymes, but the study also mentions the "ionic environment in the upper gastrointestinal tract" as being an ESSENTIAL determining factor for proper binding and absorption of B12. This in true not just of B12, but of the entire process of protein digestion. In order to restore your ability to digest proteins, you will need to address your entire GI tract. Taking isolated nutrients of any kind (enzymes, HCL, B12, probiotics etc.) would not do a thing to accomplish this. And in my opinion, could make things even worse.

    You should think of your GI as an ecosystem(because it is) Much like a lake for instance. If a lake has become polluted and toxic and unable to support life, then dumping one or two species into the lake in an overabundance (such as trout or walleye) will do nothing to bring a state of health back to the lake. The lake is filled with billions of necessary microorganisms and bacteria that man has not even identified. They are all there for a reason and necessary to sustain and support life.

    You would need to stop polluting your GI tract. (drugs, many different foods etc.) The lake will never get clean if you pour clean water in one end and polluted water in the other. You would also need to identify the many things that can kill enzymes. (pesticides, fluoride, drugs etc.) The restoration of the billions of beneficial bacteria and enzymes would come from whole foods. Healing the damaged GI would also be done through whole foods that nature meant just for this purpose. Just give your body the nutrients it needs it the form it was designed to use them in and it will do the rest.
  19. Waverunner

    Waverunner Senior Member

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    I know a lot of people who use B12 injections. This does not require the GI system at all. So if B12 can easily be circumvented through injections and enzymes can be supplemented, what is the problem?
  20. Annesse

    Annesse Senior Member

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    Well, first and foremost, B12 is only one nutrient that is not available to the body because of a lack of protein digestion. Because you are unable to digest proteins, you are also not able to release essential amino acids, nor is your body able to produce normal proteins that are the building blocks for every cell in your body. These same enzymes regulate iron absorption and tumor necrosis factor. They also break down DNA and undigested bits of proteins in your bloodstream.

    We had a discussion on this in the MS thread. Having a high serum (blood) level of B12 does not mean you have a high cellular level. And in the studies done on CFS and Fibro that studied the spinal fluid (where the spinal cord changes are taking place) they found that nearly 60% of the patients studied had low B12 and resulting high homocysteine. In addition, they were tested at a very low level for B12 deficiency. Had they been tested at a level where you do not see disease symptoms of B12 deficiency, what would the true deficiency rate have been? There is an undeniable connection to the inability to metabolize B12 and many of the symptoms of CFS. Hasn't enough time passed, that we might question the ability of B12 supplementation to correct the B12 deficiency symptoms of CFS?

    You ask what the problem is? I think that supplementation is not only ineffective, but since B12 is necessary to maintain our DNA and studies do show an increased risk of cancer with B12 supplementation that the problem may be our bodies know the difference. Here is an article on one study that shows an increased risk of cancer with B12 and folic acid supplementation.

    http://coloncancer.about.com/b/2009/11/21/folic-acid-and-b12-supplements-increase-cancer-risk.htm


    If you believe that supplementation with B12 has been ineffective for you, then I think a fair comparison would be why supplementation with vitamin D might be ineffective and perhaps even counterproductive. As much as we would like to believe that we can just take a pill to correct this, I think the evidence shows otherwise. Put down your pills, pick up your spoons.

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