PANCREATITIS (ACUTE & CHRONIC)
Written by Slawomir (“Swavak”) Gromadzki, MPH
Chronic pancreatitis is long-term inflammation of the pancreas which occurs when digestive enzymes damage the pancreas and surrounding tissues, leading to bouts of abdominal pain. Pancreas has two key functions: producing enzymes that help to digest carbohydrates, proteins, and fats in the small intestine, and secreting hormones that regulate body’s sugar metabolism. Under normal circumstances, the pancreatic enzymes that are used to digest food become activated after they leave the pancreas. However, in pancreatitis the same enzymes become activated inside the pancreas slowly digesting this organ and triggering inflammation.
Pancreatitis can be an acute condition, lasting only a few days or it can become chronic, developing gradually and persisting over a very long time and eventually can cause permanent destruction of pancreas.
The most common symptoms of chronic pancreatitis include poor digestion and abdominal pain which may radiate to the back and occasionally to the chest. In addition to pain, other pancreatitis symptoms include nausea and vomiting, fever, and a swollen, tense abdomen. Diarrhoea may also occur with potential dehydration and greasy (fatty) stools (steatorrhea) as food (especially fats) can’t be properly digested. Appetite may decrease followed by weight loss. The pancreas produces digestive enzymes and hormones (insulin and glucagon) necessary to regulate blood sugar levels. Therefore, inflammation of the pancreas causes digestive problems and may interfere with pancreas’s efforts to regulate blood glucose levels.
The leading cause of chronic pancreatitis is long-term alcohol abuse. There is evidence that cigarette smoking is associated with chronic pancreatitis. Other possible causes of this condition include bad diet high in unhealthy heated or refined fats and fried foods, overconsumption of refined sugar, frequent use of artificial sweeteners, caffeinated products, illegal drugs, etc. Also cystic fibrosis, certain autoimmune diseases, medication or hereditary pancreas disorders can trigger lead to pancreatitis.
– Vitamin D3 deficiency. There is a growing amount of research which suggests that a lack of vitamin D could be an important factor contributing to any inflammation including pancreatitis as well as autoimmunity which may also cause this condition. Almost every person in England is deficient in vitamin D which is very important also for human nervous and immune system. Deficiency of vitamin D may contribute to the development of autoimmune diseases as it is not only the most important immune system booster but also regulator which means it helps to prevent immune system from attacking own body. Read more about vitamin D >
– Magnesium, Zinc, and Selenium deficiency.
– Toxins: Mercury (from dental fillings, tap water, fish, flu shots, etc.) lead, fluoride, and other toxins.
– Stress, anxiety and depression. A number of published papers have shown that stress and negative emotions contribute to inflammations, weakness of the immune system and autoimmune diseases.
– Consumption of trans fats, margarine and bad oils (high in pro-inflammatory omega 6) and deficiency of omega 3 healthy fats high in foods such as Flax seed, Chia seed, etc..
– Bad lifestyle, unhealthy diet high in sugar, processed refined foods, nutritional deficiencies, artificial sweeteners, lack of exercise, stimulants, drugs, medication.
– Consumption of meat and dairy (especially heated) products.
– Gluten and heated animal protein (found especially in dairy) may also stimulate human immune system to turn against own body and trigger an autoimmune reaction.
– The most important aspect of successful treatment is lifestyle and diet according to the recommendations listed in the HEALTH RECOVERY PLAN > Please study it carefully and do your best to use the remedies and implement all the principles. If you manage to do it you will recover from this problem.
In case pancreatitis lead to elevated blood glucose levels try to normalise blood sugar according to the recommendations included in the article on DIABETES >
Nothing works better in controlling pancreatic pain than hydrotherapy (water treatments) such as alternative hot and cold showers or compresses and charcoal poultices on the effected area.
Experience by Dr Agatha Thrash about treating patient with Chronic Relapsing Pancreatitis using charcoal: “A twenty-six-year old woman came to the conditioning center with chronic relapsing pancreatitis, planning to stay for two or three months. She had had several abdominal operations in the past three years, and had finally been diagnosed as having chronic pancreatitis. Because of the severe unremitting pain and debility, her physicians were considering total removal of her pancreas. Hoping to find some relief short of this drastic procedure, her husband had had his job transferred to our area so that she could be treated at our institute. They ‘knew’ treatment would take several months. The patient was on potent medications for pain and nausea. Despite these, she was having continuous pain, nausea and vomiting. We asked if she were willing to stop her medications, which we felt were aggravating her condition. She reluctantly agreed. She was given fomentations to the abdomen, charcoal by mouth, and large abdominal poultices at night. Because of the severity of her symptoms, her lifestyle counselor stayed in her room continually for the first forty-eight hours. The following day, the nausea was better, and she could retain liquids. She was wheeled out into the sun for a few minutes several times a day. Day by day her pain declined, and her appetite improved. In two weeks she was taking long walks, and by three weeks was walking five to six miles a day. After four weeks, she was completely symptom-free, and they returned to their home, praising the Lord.” (source >)
HERBAL REMEDIES & SUPPLEMENTS
Apart from external use you can also take charcoal internally:
– Herbs that are very helpful in treating chronic pancreatitis include Pau d’Arco, nettle, dandelion root, licorice root, burdock root, milk thistle, turmeric, red clover, gentian root, goldenseal, and olive leaf extract.
– Since pancreas is unable to properly support the body with digestive enzyme it is is very beneficial to digestive enzyme in the form of supplements to help digest the food. This is absolutely crucial for those with pancreatitis and pancreatic insufficiency.
– Evening primrose oil or Star flower oil (a least 1000 mg a day). Both are best sources of GLA (gamma-linolenic acid) – a fatty acid which promotes healthy nervous system, immune system, skin, hair and nails.
– Take good quality omega 3 fish oil supplements: 1000 mg 2 times a day with meals. I recommand this one also because it is high in both EPA and DHA (DHA omega 3 is more important in improving brain function while EPA in coping with inflammation). Research has confirmed that omega-3 fatty acids can improve the symptoms of ADHD more effectively than drugs.
If you don’t want to use a molecularly distilled omega 3 fish oil it’s much better to use high in DHA omega 3 oil from algae (expensive) and not from fish as unlike fish oils, the algae-derived omega 3, is free from toxins that may be present in some low quality fish oils. In case you prefer to avoid swallowing gelatine capsule pierce or cut the omega 3 capsule and squeeze it into a meal or liquid.
– Zinc (helps produce thyroid hormone) – 30 to 50mg a day after breakfast. Zinc deficiency can cause gastrointestinal system to malfunction (for example, without zinc proteins can’t be properly digested), so foods aren’t completely digested. These food particles can then be absorbed into bloodstream where body misidentifies them as antigens and then produces antibodies against them. Also gluten can lead to a similar problem.
– Take good quality probiotic formulas as autoimmune diseases are linked with the deficiency of the probiotic bacteria in the gut.
– You must take Vitamin D3 because almost all patients suffering from inflammations (including pancreatitis) and autoimmune diseases are deficient in Vitamin D! While using vitamin D3 supplements always remember to take also well absorbed magnesium (such as citrate) as vitamin D supplements lead to magnesium deficiency over time. If you can’t afford higher doses take at least 10,000 IU of vitamin D3 a day with meal. But since deficiency of this vitamin is so widespread (especially in the UK) it would be better to take 20,000 to 30,000 IU a day with meals with appropriate doses of magnesium. Another requirement for proper absorption of vitamin D is 200 mcg of Vitamin K2 MK-7 (Derived from Natural Natto) a day. Read more about vitamin D >
– Magnesium citrate or another well absorbed magnesium: 2 times a day 200-400 mg between meals. The more vitamin D3 is used the more magnesium must be taken as D3 leads to magnesium deficiency.
– Vitamin B12: 1,000 to 2,000 mcg a day under the tongue (must be sublingual Methylcobalamin!). Many people with inflammations, weak immune system and autoimmune diseases have low levels of this most important vitamin. Read a fascinating article on B12 >
– Boost Glutathione levels which is a most powerful of all antioxidants and strengthens the immune system and is one of the most effective remedies against inflammations . It boosts body’s ability to modulate and regulate the immune system. It is also important to provide body with ingredients that increase glutathione production in the liver by taking turmeric, milk thistle, L-cysteine or NAC (N-acetyl cysteine), Alpha Lipoic Acid, bilberry, vitamin C, asparagus, broccoli, peaches, avocado, spinach, garlic, squash, grapefruit.
– Taking selenium supplements and increasing consumption of foods high in selenium (Brazil nuts, sunflower seeds, mushrooms, garlic, onions, etc.).
– Good quality Multivitamin-mineral formula or Vitamin B-complex: 1 tablet after breakfast. Please do not buy cheap formulas as their potency is very low and they contain only short list of inorganic ingredients. It must be a good quality formula such as Healthy Mega (HealthAid), VM75 (Solgar) or Special Two (NOW Foods) which are an excellent multi-vitamin and mineral formulas fortified with alfalfa powder, rutin, citrus bioflavonoids, bromelain, herbs, digestive enzymes and many other super nutrients. If your diet is very healthy and you stay away from refined foods, sugar and stimulants then take only 1/2 tablet after breakfast.
– Since Vitamin B complex (B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, Folate) play very important role in dealing with autoimmune diseases I recommand getting B complex with a good quality multivitamin-mineral formula which is high in B vitamins. One of my favourite ones is Healthy Mega (HealthAid) as it is not only high in B vitamins and at the same time it contains zinc, selenium, herbs, digestive enzymes, micronutrients, and few super grasses. Compared with other popular formulas Healthy Mega may contain even up to 60 times more vitamins per tablet (see the picture below)!
Adults may take 1 tablet of Healthy Mega after breakfast, children 1/2 tablet (or less) crushed and mixed with juice after breakfast.
– Beneficial herbs: Tulsi (Holy basil), Lemon balm (Melissa), Turmeric, Hops.
– Everyday take organic Chlorella powder or tablets (Pukka, etc.), or excellent Clean greens powder (Pukka), or other super foods such as barley grass, alfalfa, maca, ground hemp seed, wheat grass, etc. Read article about amazing health benefits of CHLORELLA >
Researchers have demonstrated that Chlorella and Spirulina are effective in treating hepatitis C infections and therefore should be very beneficial also in pancreatitis! The scientists treated patients who suffered from chronic hepatitis C with Chlorella. After 3 months of treating patients with relatively small doses of Chlorella the researchers discovered that the condition of 70% of the patients significantly improved.
In addition, the immune system of the patents treated with Chlorella was stronger and almost 80% of them reported increased energy levels. The scientists also noted that the chlorella didn’t cause any negative side effects.
– Boswellia (Viridian): According to one study 80% of patients on Boswellia experienced remission from some autoimmune diseases!
– Charcoal compress (poultice) on pancreas area gives amazing results:
– Clay baths should effective too. You can add green clay to your baths. Clay is so amazing because apart from having anti-inflammatory properties it is able to absorb different toxic substances from the body. In addition it also provides a soothing effect and can even nourish and regenerate damaged skin. You do not need too much clay in the bath. About 1/2 cup of a green or bentonite clay in a warm bath should be enough.
NUTRITIONAL AND LIFESTYLE RECOMMENDATIONS
– Drink and try use for cooking only distilled or at least filtered water. Not all water filters remove fluoride, so make sure the one you have does or use only distilled water (buy a water distiller). > Also taking chlorella and turmeric help to get rid of fluoride and heavy metals such as mercury.
– Go on an anti-inflammatory diet: Get plenty of fresh raw vegetable juices and raw vegetables (especially those rich in carotenoids such as carrots, as well as green leafy vegetables) and fresh fruits.
– Consuming a diet that is low in sugar may also help speed your recovery from chronic pancreatitis are often used in combination with other treatments recommended by your doctor.
– If possible avoid all animal foods including cheese, meat products, all dairy, stimulants (caffeine, alcohol, cigarettes, etc.).
– Try to go on vegan unrefined diet for at least 6 months as it gives best results. Eat especially with lots of raw vegetables salads and raw vegetable juices.
– Eliminate all junk food, processed food, artificial sweeteners, trans fats, and anything with bad preservatives and chemical.
– Eating whole, unprocessed foods, and choosing as many organics as possible.
– Getting adequate sun exposure if possible (20 minutes a day during summer time between 10 am and 2 pm) to maintain vitamin D levels.
– Avoid gluten (wheat products, etc.). The molecular structure of different parts of human body is often almost identical to that of gluten and therefore the immune system may start sending antibodies not only against gluten proteins but against proteins found in different organs causing autoimmune diseases. In this way gluten can increase the autoimmune reaction. Many people with autoimmune diseases have an autoimmune reaction to gluten, and it usually goes unrecognised. Gluten (and also zinc deficiency) can cause gastrointestinal system to malfunction, so foods aren’t completely digested. These food particles can then be absorbed into bloodstream where body misidentifies them as antigens and then produces antibodies against them.
According to a scientific research results published in 2008, “The glutenfree diet described as only effective therapy to prevent acute pancreatitis relapses associated with gluten enteropathy.” >
– Avoid all dairy products as heated or pasteurised dairy protein (especially A1 casein) often irritates the immune system stimulating it to produce antibodies against different internal organs. The most common allergies and food intolerances today are from wheat and dairy products because of the hybridized proteins of gluten and a1 casein. These proteins can also cause Leaky Gut Syndrome which leads to inflammation.
– Avoid water, drinks and foods in plastic containers and cans. Use glass bottles as Bisphenol A (BPA) which is found in plastic bottles and cans (lined up with plastic) disrupt endocrine system. Read more >
– Avoiding chlorine (tap water, swimming pools), fluoride (toothpastes with fluoride, etc.), and bromine as they also contribute to autoimmune diseases.
– Avoid hydrogenated fats and trans fats (margarines, doughnuts, cakes, etc.) and pro-inflammatory omega 6 fatty acids (most of the commercial oils, soy oil, corn oil, sunflower oil, etc.). Ray Peat Ph.D., a physiologist who has worked with progesterone and related hormones since 1968, says that the sudden surge of polyunsaturated oils into the food chain post World War II has caused many changes in hormones. He writes: “The best understood effect of the polyunsaturated oils is their interference with the function of the thyroid gland. Unsaturated oils block thyroid hormone secretion, its movement in the circulatory system, and the response of tissues to the hormone. When the thyroid hormone is deficient, the body is generally exposed to increased levels of estrogen. The thyroid hormone is essential for making the ‘protective hormones’ progesterone and pregnenolone, so these hormones are lowered when anything interferes with the function of the thyroid. The thyroid hormone is required for using and eliminating cholesterol, so cholesterol is likely to be raised by anything that blocks the thyroid function.”
– Increase consumption of omega 3 fatty acids in the form of ground flax seeds, chia seeds. Omega 3s are the building blocks for hormones that control immune function and cell growth.
– Detoxifying body from heavy metals by using combination of: Chlorella, Milk Thistle, Turmeric, Cilantro.
– Remove any dental fillings containing mercury. Read more >
– Increasing intake of healthy fats such as raw coconut oil, coconut milk, avocado, chia seeds (soaked for at least 30 minutes or overnight), ground flaxseed, and hemp seeds as they will balance hormones. Coconut oil is effective in reducing inflammation, improving metabolism, and enhancing cognitive function. It is easily digested and do not rely on bile to be excreted from the liver, making them great for people with mal-digestion and absorption problems. Coconut oil is a saturated fat comprising medium chain triglycerides (MCTs), which are known to increase metabolism and promote weight loss. Coconut oil is very stable (shelf life of three to five years at room temperature), so body is much less burdened with oxidative stress than it is from many other vegetable oils.
– Increase consumption of vitamin A in the form of beta-carotene found in carrots, apricots, green leafy vegetables, etc.
– Eliminate stimulants (anything with caffeine or other similar harmful alkaloids: coffee, tea, green tea, mate, yerba mate, cola, chocolate, etc.).
– Exercise at least 30–60 minutes per day.
– Get enough sleep.
– Practice deep breathing.
– Treat unresolved emotional issues. Autoimmune diseases reflect emotions and mental attitude. When people with autoimmune diseases make progress in treating unresolved emotional issues, their symptoms subside. Stress, anxiety, hatred, unforgivingness, or depression are often key culprits. It is important to identify the stressors and learn use ways such as prayer that can help to control stress and all negative emotions. Read about the DEADLY CONSEQUENCES OF UNFORGIVENESS > and find out how to recover from DEPRESSION & ANXIETY >
Please read this extremely important part (LINK) very carefully as it reveals the secret of finding true source of strength necessary to overcome bad habits and will help you to gain a powerful motivation to not only practice but also enjoy the new and very healthy way of life.
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