We often overlook remedies that have been around for decades in favor of the “latest and greatest” advancements for our health issues. But, as I watched my social media feed over the past few months fill up with everything from sourdough bread starts to first-time gardens, I realized this pandemic is bringing us around to a new appreciation for the timeless traditions for caring for our health. This inspired me to share with you my favorite time-tested remedies for relief from diabetic neuropathy, scar tissue, atherosclerosis, and arterial plaque.
THE ESSENTIAL FATTY ACID THAT RELIVES DIABETIC NEUROPATHY
Right now, one out of ten adults in the US is diabetic, and it’s estimated that half of those diagnosed also experience the pain of diabetic neuropathy. It saddens me when clients come to me on medication with intolerable side effects of regimens of B vitamins that only take the edge off. Several studies showing the effectiveness of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) on reversing diabetic neuropathy span more than four decades, going as far back as 1986.
GLA is an essential fatty acid that our bodies require for normal neuron structure and optimal microcirculation. Diabetics have a reduced ability to convert linoleic acid (omega 6) into GLA, which results in a deficiency. A lack of GLA and associated metabolites are a known root cause of the development of peripheral neuropathy.
Supplementing with GLA not only restores levels to normal but also helps to correct the biochemical defects associated with diabetes. Study participants showed marked improvement not only in pain, but also in sensory nerve conduction, muscle response, and heat and cold thresholds. Study doses varied from 360 to 480 milligrams and took up to three months to show improvement. I recommend taking two pills of UNI KEY Health’s GLA-90 up to three times daily for at least 90 days, and making sure your blood sugars are well under control with your diet.
THE ENZYMES THAT BREAK DOWN SCAR TISSUE
For more than thirty years, studies have shown that scar tissue can be removed from the body non-invasively by supplementing with certain enzymes. Every tissue in your body—from organs and bones all the way down to the cell level—is regulated by enzymes. Proteolytic enzymes are the specific enzymes that digest proteins and can metabolize and break down scar tissues in the body.
Scar tissue is similar to normal tissue, in that it’s made from collagen. The difference is that scar tissue is made in an area where there’s inflammation, so the fibers are tightly wound together and cross-linked, and they shrink to form an inflexible, fibrous tissue.
Breaking down scar tissue is a two-step process, and it takes specialized proteolytic enzymes to do the job. These enzymes first go in and reduce inflammation by neutralizing the biochemicals that cause it, so healing can take place. Next, they digest the proteins that form the tight collagen-based tissue of the scar. They do all of this while supporting the immune system so that infections don’t invade the remodeling tissues.
The proteolytic enzyme shown to be the most effective in dissolving scars is serrapeptase, but in my opinion, the best enzyme formulations also contain enzymes that help your body digest and process the cellular toxins released during the scar breakdown, to keep inflammation at bay. My enzyme formula of choice is UNI KEY Health’s Digesta-Key, which contains serrapeptase, along with several key digestive and anti-inflammatory plant and animal-based enzymes. To be most effective for this use, it needs to be taken at least twice daily between meals.
IS ATHEROSCLEROSIS REALLY ARTERIAL SCURVY?
The first study showing that plaque in the arteries is reversible was all the way back in 1954. Dr. Willis’ study reported that 60 percent of the participants had a reversal or improvement in the amount of plaque in their arteries with his protocol, as shown by injecting dye then taking x-rays of the arteries. So, what was his secret for success? A 500-milligram dose of vitamin C taken three times daily, which was based on even earlier studies done to determine how much vitamin C was needed to maintain a steady tissue concentration.
After this initial study, Dr. Willis dug deeper and what he found was shocking. He did a study based on autopsies of patients who had died of sudden cardiac arrest. Even in previously healthy, well-nourished people, he found a local deficiency of vitamin C in the coronary arteries. This deficiency was worse in areas of mechanical stress, which led him to the conclusion that the damage in the vessels came from the increased pressure in areas without vitamin C’s protective effects.
We now have more than 100 years of research showing the importance of vitamin C to the cardiovascular system, but we didn’t even hear about it until Linus Pauling and Matthias Rath, MD, a cardiologist, picked up Dr. Willis’ research and not only confirmed it but modernized it. They found that the type of LDL cholesterol known as the Lp(a) protein caused the formation of plaque in damaged arteries that were deficient in vitamin C and lysine. Their studies confirmed that they could stop this plaque formation with doses of vitamin C at 40 milligrams per kilogram of body weight per day. Not only did the Lp(a) levels in the blood drop, but arteries showed less plaque on imaging studies.
UNI KEY Health formulated their Time-C with this research in mind. Their timed-released vitamin C is buffered with magnesium and heart-healthy lysine for gentle absorption, and timed release helps keep vitamin C levels consistently optimal for up to six hours from each dose. I recommend dosing three times daily for steady tissue concentrations, and I also recommend getting the blood test for Lp(a) as part of your routine yearly physical.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Gittleman is an award-winning author of over thirty books and a highly respected health pioneer. Her books include New York Times bestsellers, The Fat Flush Plan and Before the Change, and her recent, revised, and updated, Eat Fat Lose Weight: How Smart Fats Reset Fat Cells to Slim. A Columbia University graduate, Gittleman has been recognized as one of the top ten nutritionists in the country by Self magazine and has received the American Medical Writers Association award for excellence.