Pancreas Damage, Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency (EPI) and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

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@Cipher
Not sure if this will help, but I reversed pretty severe constipation, along with severe panic/anxiety, by taking small doses of mag glycinate steadily, all day, every day, for a daily total of somewhere between 800 - 1100 mgs a day with no ill effects that I know of. I also used mag oxide, 3/8ths tspn, which totally knocked back the constipation and helped me normalize both my deadened peristalsis and constipation.

Mag gly doesn't have the unpleasant bowel effect that other mag's do, and mag oxide is only about 4% bioavailable, so combining the 2 worked on 2 very different, very crippling conditions.

You might try the 50 mg every 60 min's or so (on bad days, before the mag gly workd it's genius, I'd sometimes take it every 40 mins or so, just to alleviate the panic), and see if that helps.


How can one know if their liver isn't producing enough bile?
One of the give-aways is very pale, clay-like feces. Possibly some nausea. I can't think of the others right now, not a great day. But infinitely better than a year ago, when this would have passed for pretty good, comparatively speaking.

I'm betting that @BeADocToGoTo1 would know more about signs of low bile production, he's well-informed and very generous about sharing his info.
 

PatJ

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How can one know if their liver isn't producing enough bile?
This site includes information about bile/bile salts. It includes this list of signs that indicate a person may not be producing enough bile, or that possibly the bile is obstructed or too thick:
* diarrhea
* trapped gas
* bad-smelling gas
* stomach cramps
* erratic bowel movements
* weight loss
* pale-colored stools (which can also be caused by lack of pancreatic enzymes and for other reasons.)
 
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@Cipher
Not sure if this will help, but I reversed pretty severe constipation, along with severe panic/anxiety, by taking small doses of mag glycinate steadily, all day, every day, for a daily total of somewhere between 800 - 1100 mgs a day with no ill effects that I know of. I also used mag oxide, 3/8ths tspn, which totally knocked back the constipation and helped me normalize both my deadened peristalsis and constipation.

Mag gly doesn't have the unpleasant bowel effect that other mag's do, and mag oxide is only about 4% bioavailable, so combining the 2 worked on 2 very different, very crippling conditions.

You might try the 50 mg every 60 min's or so (on bad days, before the mag gly workd it's genius, I'd sometimes take it every 40 mins or so, just to alleviate the panic), and see if that helps.


One of the give-aways is very pale, clay-like feces. Possibly some nausea. I can't think of the others right now, not a great day. But infinitely better than a year ago, when this would have passed for pretty good, comparatively speaking.

I'm betting that @BeADocToGoTo1 would know more about signs of low bile production, he's well-informed and very generous about sharing his info.
I'm keeping the constipation at bay with about 1 bag of Movicol (Macrogol 3350 w/ electrolytes) per day, so the constipation is not a big problem unless I forget to take it. I guess megadosing magnesium would work in the same way as Macrogol by osmosis. The main GI-related problem I have is bloating and excessive burping after meals. I'm suspecting SIBO (arose after long term use of PPI), so I'm going to try some single-strain, high-dose self-fermented probiotic yogurt soon to see if that resolves both the bloating/burping and the chronic constipation. I also have type 1 diabetes, which causes an autoimmune destruction of the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. About 60 % of type 1 diabetes patients seems to have EPI, so I will try to get a fecal elastase test done to see if other parts of my pancreas have been damaged. My GI-symptoms might be because of EPI and not SIBO, or both, who knows! I don't have pale, clay-like feces which I guess indicates that I probably don't have low bile.
 

PatJ

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Thank you for your Primal Pancreas book @BeADocToGoTo1, for the very reasonable ebook price, and for letting us know about it. I've been reading through it (starting with the action item chapters) and have found it to be very useful. It's well worth the $7.99 CDN that I paid for it on Amazon.ca.

I had already figured out that I had pancreas problems because:
1. I was having to eat every 80 minutes because of blood sugar drops. This went on for years until recently.
2. I get kidney ache and foamy urine if I eat more than 8-10 grams of protein (even with betaine hcl), but if I take enzymes then I don't get those side effects. This started about four months ago and prompted me to do a lot of focused research.

Thanks to your information I've started taking amino acids. I'm not sure if they're helping yet (I'm hoping weight gain would be one useful sign). I'm also taking even more digestive enzymes with each meal. I can actually stay awake after meals now if I take enough enzymes. It's amazing.

I've also been using Dr. Christopher's Liver and Gallbladder, and Dr. Christopher's Pancreas formula. After using them for a couple of months I can now go for 3 - 3 1/2 hours without eating.

The pancreas formula contains cedar berries which may be able to regenerate the pancreas. Dr. Christopher used them to help many of his patients overcome diabetes.

I'm going to have to rely on self treatment for now. I'm housebound and can't make it to a doctor. I also don't have much faith that a doctor would know what to do with me and all my symptoms, and would probably make things worse. The only progress I've made has been through personal research and supplements.

Now I'm looking at many different OTC enzyme products to see if I can come up with the most useful, and reasonably priced combination for my needs.
 

PatJ

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I also have type 1 diabetes, which causes an autoimmune destruction of the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas.
You might want to look into Dr. Christopher's Pancreas formula, or this blog entry mentions:
"The pancreas can be regenerated, and this can be accomplished with herbal therapy. I would like to focus on two particular herbs today. There has been a lot of press on cinnamon, sage and some other herbs for regulating blood sugar. These are wonderful and have helped many people, but we want to actually rebuild the pancreas if we can. Gurmar (Gymnema sylvestre, often called gymnema) has been shown to do this. In several clinical studies with this herb, the islets of Langerhans (the cells in the pancreas that produce insulin) were able to be rebuilt.(1) Some other clinical studies indicated that the beta cells could even be regenerated with extracts of gymnema!" (bold added)
 
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I guess megadosing magnesium would work in the same way as Macrogol by osmosis.
@Cipher
With most forms of magnesium yes. With mag glycinate, not so much. I use it for panic/anxiety, severe nuscle spasms, and someother stuff.


For constipaton, I use mag oxide, which is only 4% bioavailable, working mostly by drawing liquid into the large intestine. It's been a real miracle for me.

I also don't have much faith that a doctor would know what to do with me and all my symptoms, and would probably make things worse.
That's been my experience, and since realizing how little the medical community knows, or is willing to learn or accept about this crappy illness, I've saved myself a boatload of angst, frustration, and money by doing it the hard way, which has also yielded some major improvements I doubt I would have enjoyed after being pumped with multiple BigPharma, before being kicked to the "delusional" curb, as so many members here report.

The only progress I've made has been through personal research and supplements.
That's also been my experience, even after consulting with a naturopath.

I'm so sorry that you have so many challenges, @PatJ, but I firmly believe that you're taking the right road in doing the hard work of research and trial and error yourself, rather than letting someone else experiment on you with potentially devastating results. I know that it's frightening initially, until you make that one sudden discovery that leads to a step up or forward.

Hat's off to you, it's definitely the road less traveled ..... :):) :thumbsup: :woot: :hug:
 

prioris

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So many studies out there validating that pancreas can regenerate. In the past, the corrupt medical establishment would claim otherwise. I was looking at Gymnema not too long ago.

The minimum therapeutic dose for chromium supplement is 1000 mg. Maybe some pancreatic supplement could also take load off kidney until it heals.

So if I have pancreas problems, i make sure cholesterol in bilary duct not blocking pancreas and i just use supplements and maybe some diet to cure and regenerate ... wouldn't bother with tests etc ... blockages can cause pancreatic fluid to destroy pancreas

It has been said that one reason people became type 1 diabetes is because milk i think they drank when very young had some immune reaction which destroyed their pancreas islets.

Blood Sugar
These seem to be top 3 supplements for blood sugar regulation

Phellodendron Bark, (Berberine Hydrochloride)
Berberine is an extract that comes from tree bark . Studies have shown that a concentrated supplement made from it is able to control blood sugar levels by inhibiting absorption of sugars in the intestine and enhancing insulin production. Other research has shown that Berberine also reduces blood lipids (fats) and aids in weight loss.

Cinnamon Bark, (Cinnanmaldehyde)
Cinnamon is actually a potent diabetes curing nutrient. This is because the cinnamon in Glyco-Optimizer is rich in Cinnnamaldehyde which is a chemical that aids in blood glucose management through improving insulin release and enhancing insulin sensitivity.

Chromium
Chromium plays a vital role in metabolizing proteins, carbohydrates and fats as well as helping you maintain maintaining normal blood glucose levels. Chromium actually enhances the efficacy and absorption rates of insulin in the body, making it an essential nutrient for diabetics.
 
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... I'm suspecting SIBO (arose after long term use of PPI), so I'm going to try some single-strain, high-dose self-fermented probiotic yogurt soon to see if that resolves both the bloating/burping and the chronic constipation. I also have type 1 diabetes, which causes an autoimmune destruction of the insulin-producing beta cells in the pancreas. About 60 % of type 1 diabetes patients seems to have EPI, so I will try to get a fecal elastase test done to see if other parts of my pancreas have been damaged. My GI-symptoms might be because of EPI and not SIBO, or both, who knows! I don't have pale, clay-like feces which I guess indicates that I probably don't have low bile.
And I read a study that 25-50% of diabetes 2 patients also can have various levels of EPI, or pre-EPI (like pre-diabetes) as I like to call it. That is a lot of people suffering without even knowing it. It is a sensitive organ... the canary in the coalmine of the modern food supply.

The MRI (MRCP) that I took checked the gallbladder and ducts. But I did not show issues there so I will refer to PatJ's, Prioris' and other posters.

PPI and acid reducers are prescribed like it is candy when it has nasty side effects. Low stomach acid can actually be a cause of bacteria and yeast overgrowth in areas that should be relatively clean (stomach, esophagus, duodenum for example). SIBO and Candida also hinder nutrient absorption and can add to the toxic and immune load in your body. I dedicated a section to Candida yeast, SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth) and acid (silent) reflux, since it was a big action step I had to take on the path to heal. There is also a strong link in root cause, symptoms, and resolution steps. In my case, EPI exacerbated those symptoms. Just taking active yoghurt might not be enough. It certainly was not for me as it took 30 days of multiple actions in parallel. But it provided me with serious improvements in symptoms.
 
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Thank you for your Primal Pancreas book @BeADocToGoTo1, for the very reasonable ebook price, and for letting us know about it. I've been reading through it (starting with the action item chapters) and have found it to be very useful. It's well worth the $7.99 CDN that I paid for it on Amazon.ca.

I had already figured out that I had pancreas problems because:
1. I was having to eat every 80 minutes because of blood sugar drops. This went on for years until recently.
2. I get kidney ache and foamy urine if I eat more than 8-10 grams of protein (even with betaine hcl), but if I take enzymes then I don't get those side effects. This started about four months ago and prompted me to do a lot of focused research.

Thanks to your information I've started taking amino acids. I'm not sure if they're helping yet (I'm hoping weight gain would be one useful sign). I'm also taking even more digestive enzymes with each meal. I can actually stay awake after meals now if I take enough enzymes. It's amazing.

I've also been using Dr. Christopher's Liver and Gallbladder, and Dr. Christopher's Pancreas formula. After using them for a couple of months I can now go for 3 - 3 1/2 hours without eating.

The pancreas formula contains cedar berries which may be able to regenerate the pancreas. Dr. Christopher used them to help many of his patients overcome diabetes.

I'm going to have to rely on self treatment for now. I'm housebound and can't make it to a doctor. I also don't have much faith that a doctor would know what to do with me and all my symptoms, and would probably make things worse. The only progress I've made has been through personal research and supplements.

Now I'm looking at many different OTC enzyme products to see if I can come up with the most useful, and reasonably priced combination for my needs.
Hi PatJ,

Sorry to hear about your struggles. Very glad to hear it that a few elements are helping. I vividly remember the day that I tripled my Creon dosage. Not sure how much was psychosomatic at the time (don't really care :) ), but within an hour I felt a surge of energy and relief. It took a while for the undigested food to work its way out of my system, but it was such as strong signal. Relentless pain in so many areas for years and the hypoglycemic episodes were also parrt of my experience. The blood sugar dips and spikes were much easier to get under control with diet and enzymes. But I had to take a really hard and honest look at food, and educate myself, as I thought I was always eating healthily. Little did I know. The pain took a lot longer to resolve as a symptom, mainly because my body needed to heal so many more areas that had been hit over time.

It really is too bad that you are not able to get a prescription version of pancrelipase via the doctor, by telephone or an email, as that will likely be much cheaper and in better controlled quantities.
 

prioris

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I think it is a good idea to learn how to do a gallbladder flush (i have post in it) just as a preventive measure and then do one every now and then. It's like doing an oil change on a car. You do it to avoid problems. It also becomes a healing tool also if things happen down the road and you've already gone thru learning curve then using the tool becomes second nature. I learned the basics of doing enemas just to have it as a tool if I ever need it. Even when something doesn't work, I collect it as a possible medicine or tool for other problems in future.

Proton Pump Inhibitors are definitely a no no. That will cause more damage. It is sad they hand them out like candy.
 
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I think it is a good idea to learn how to do a gallbladder flush (i have post in it) just as a preventive measure and then do one every now and then. It's like doing an oil change on a car. You do it to avoid problems. It also becomes a healing tool also if things happen down the road and you've already gone thru learning curve then using the tool becomes second nature. I learned the basics of doing enemas just to have it as a tool if I ever need it. Even when something doesn't work, I collect it as a possible medicine or tool for other problems in future.

Proton Pump Inhibitors are definitely a no no. That will cause more damage. It is sad they hand them out like candy.
Thanks for the suggestion.
 

PatJ

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I vividly remember the day that I tripled my Creon dosage.
The right amount makes such a difference. I was thinking I had it right just because I was avoiding kidney discomfort, but then I upped the dose and suddenly could stay awake after meals.

I've noticed some other useful changes as well:
* I have more body heat. An hour after taking the first enzyme capsule several weeks ago I noticed that my body, and especially arms, was emitting more heat.
* No more undigested food in my stool
* Stool is better shaped (but I still need to take magnesium to avoid constipation and over-firm stool)
* Thinking is often somewhat clearer
* My mood is better and I don't have the weird emotional fluctuations and occasional severe anxiety that I used to.
* My hair is softer. It used to be hard and brittle. I noticed when trimming my beard yesterday that the trimmers were cutting very easily and quickly compared to previously.
* My skin, especially on my hands is smoother and shinier
* The skin on my arms has been very dry and flaky for years. That's starting to reduce.

The last three items are probably due to better fat absorption.

Hopefully I'll be able to gain weight soon. I've been emaciated for years (5'10", male, and 105-110 pounds). I should weigh at least 140-150 pounds. No matter what I eat I can't gain weight, probably because I haven't been properly breaking down and absorbing the nutrients. I tried eating meat for a week about 6 months ago and lost weight. I assume that's because my body was spending more energy trying to break it down than it was getting out of it. I'd probably do better now with appropriate enzymes.

But I had to take a really hard and honest look at food, and educate myself, as I thought I was always eating healthily. Little did I know.
I've had a good, Ayurvedic oriented diet for years so I think I'm doing well there.

The pain took a lot longer to resolve as a symptom
Happily, pain isn't a problem for me unless I push into overtiredness, then I will get coat-hanger pain, a kind of muscle pain across the shoulders and upper back.

It really is too bad that you are not able to get a prescription version of pancrelipase via the doctor, by telephone or an email, as that will likely be much cheaper and in better controlled quantities.
Doctors around my area won't prescribe anything without some test results to back it up. I'm in Canada so doctors need to understandably justify why tax dollars should be spent on covering a patient's tests and prescription. Convincing a doctor to do the tests would take more mental and physical stamina than I can muster at the moment. Maybe the OTC enzymes will help my health enough that I'll be able to make it to a doctor at some point and make the argument for tests and prescription enzymes.

Berberine is an extract that comes from tree bark.
That's interesting because the first ingredient in Dr. Christopher's Liver and Gallbladder formula is barberry, which contains berberine. The formula includes other ingredients that aid the liver, gallbladder, and modulate each others effects:
* barberry - anti-inflammatory, opens ducts for better bile flow
* wild yam - balances hormones, nourishes, prevents liver spasms caused by gallbladder stimulating herbs
* cramp bark - reduces chances of cramping
* fennel seed
* ginger
* catnip
* peppermint

The first time I tried milk thistle several years ago my liver went into non-painful spasms. Years later I found out about wild yam which could have prevented the spasms.

I think it is a good idea to learn how to do a gallbladder flush
Do you know if a gallbladder flush will work properly if the oil isn't being properly broken down by enzymes? I'm thinking it might be a problem because:
1. One of the side effects of poor enzyme production is light stool.
2. Light stool can be a sign of poor bile production.
3. Maybe a liver can be capable of producing bile but only if the fat is properly broken down by enzymes.

If I take too much oil (without enzymes) it will be floating in the toilet bowl while I still have light stool which tells me my liver isn't reacting the oil, maybe because it hasn't been properly digested by enzymes.

I know my liver is capable of producing bile because I tried eating a beet per day for a few days. This encourages the liver to produce more bile. My stool darkened for the first time in a long time. I couldn't keep it up though because the beets lowered my already-too-low blood pressure even more.

I tried a two day mild version of the gallbladder flush a few days ago (without taking enzymes with it). It lead to mild nausea for three days and some discomfort around the mid-chest/pancreas/gallbladder area. I'm thinking it was my pancreas because the discomfort was oriented more toward my left side.
 

prioris

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The purpose of the oil to get the gallbladder to forcefully expel it's bile contents.
I have always understood light stool to mean not enough pancreatic enzyme
Oil gets broken down by pancreas
So maybe your bile is fine
I'd be careful about using beet to check stool color.
I would think the red dye color may be mixing with stool giving you a false color reading.

I'd try pancreatic enzymes and see if regular stools darken
---------------------------------------
Cliff notes for Gallbladder Flush

Step 1
Take malic acid with water twice a day on empty stomach for month or two especially if first time (this dissolves cholesterol deposits over time) (I do just weekly ones but first time I went 8 weeks)

Step 2a
this is about making sure you emptied your colon ... epsom salt, not eating after 6pm night before, no more solid foods

Step 2b
Hour before flush, dissolve 1 tablespoon of epsom salt in warm water and drink

Step 2c
Flush
Mix 1/2 cup olive oil and 1/4 cup concentrated lemon juice and drink
Immediately lie down on right side curled up and wait at least 20 minutes
What will you feel ... likely nothing much ... stay close to toilet just in case
(Epsom salt will relax you and may put you to sleep)

After this, you understand process and can modify it accordingly
 
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Beets alarmed me once as well as I though it was blood in stool and urine due to the coloring effect.

For a wealth of details on health reports, the NCBI kept me busy reading for a long time. Here is an example of a detailed article on bile, which shows the complexity, as well as the cofactors required in its production. There are links to amino acids, minerals, vitamins, cholesterol, phospholipids, ATP, etc. and it is an important means of getting rid of waste products and excess cholesterol.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4091928/

When you start digging into the biochemistry of our bodies, it is incredible how much needs to happen to make it all function and how interlinked many of the processes are. That is why it was so important for me to remove any bodily insults that I had control over as part of the healing process, in addition to stemming all the nutrient deficiencies and causes of nutrient deficiencies.
 

Sundancer

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last year I made a topic about constipation, someone posted this video, educative

I'll see whether i find the energy for that long paper about bile too, it looks interesting.

Interestingly last weeks I do have almost black poo with a greenish hue, which suggests that my liver is working overtime and producing lots of bile, makes me sick in the night though. I'll patiently wait until it normalizes again.
 

Sundancer

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@Sundancer
Really interesting video, and thank you so much for posting it. :):)
---- this is one of the new bland, flat, boring, zero-dimensional, charm-free emojis. I totally hate 'em ....

I do not like those new emojis either,
some time ago I've seen a video that had as core-point that gallstones are probably have a causal relation with glucoronisation taking over from...ehrr...something else, I think sulfurmetabolizing. When I find it back i will post it here too. Interesting stuff it was.