What is AutoImmune Disease?


Autoimmune Disease

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by Marilyn Sidwell 3/16
reviewed by John W Jones, MD, MPH
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Autoimmune Disease and Probiotics
Nutritional Support for Autoimmune Disease
You have heard of it - you may even live with the diagnosis.  The body’s immune system gets confused and begins to attack itself.  This causes a variety of injuries and inflammatory situations affecting perhaps 50 million Americans.

There is increasing evidence that the use of probiotics may protect against the development of various autoimmune diseases (AD).   Even more exciting, the use of probiotics may delay the onset, and lessen the effects of AD.

AD is implicated in 80 to 100 different conditions, and 40 more are suspected.  The most commonly encountered are Diabetes mellitus type I, Psoriasis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Ankylosing spondylitis, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Multiple sclerosis,  Inflammatory Bowel disease, Crohn’s disease, Ulcerative colitis, Celiac disease, and Ulcerative colitis.

See "Women's Health" for more information
The American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association has an A to Z Listing of Diseases.   Believe me - the list is long.

What causes Autoimmune Disease?

The exact cause is not clear.  Researchers believe there is a genetic  predisposition underlying the problem.  Environmental factors, such as toxins, diet, infectious agents and loss of normal intestinal flora may tip the scale.  These factors may cause the body to perceive itself as ‘foreign’.

After your skin, your gastrointestinal epithelium (GI Track) is the main interaction site that your body has with the outside world.   (The GI Tract) This system contains over 70% of the body’s lymphoid cells.  It is the primary immune organ providing an interaction between the external environment your host defense.  In a healthy individual this interaction is contingent upon a normal gastrointestinal microbial population - normal flora.  A breakdown in this system may lead to a ‘leaky gut’ and many other problems.

What can cause an immune system breakdown?

Problems arise when there is damage to the tissue lining the GI tract.   For instance, if you have an allergy to gluten and/or milk, such as happens in Crohn’s disease, you will have various degrees of physical damage in to the GI tract.  Other problems may arise when there is damage to the good bacteria that normally live in the GI tract.  Antibiotics, for instance, kill both good & bad bacteria, including those that live in the GI tract.

The CDC has an ongoing program to discourage the over-use of antibiotics (consider Ultra Monolaurin instead).   Many experts feel the use of antibiotics in animals in the food chain as well as GMO food use, are additional contributing factors.

Your lifestyle choices may contribute to autoimmune disease.  For instance, the Infants delivered by C-Section are not exposed to the normal flora that would occur in a regular delivery.  The pasteurization of food and excessive use of disinfectants may also cause a change in normal flora that should live in or on your body.  

What do these factors have to do with AD?

Our immune system seems to need exposure to various bacteria (and viruses) in order to build and sustain a healthy immune system.  A breakdown in the flora in the GI Track (the wrong or missing bacteria organisms) may be responsible for, or aggravate, a variety of inflammatory conditions, allergy and autoimmune disease.  A number of scientists have been studying the relationship between microorganisms that should inhabit the GI tract and autoimmune conditions.

What can be done to help AD?

For years doctors have been recommending the use of probiotics whenever there is a course of antibiotics given for various infections.   Probiotics help replenish the ‘friendly’ bacteria that live in the GI Track.

Recently we learned that scientists are studying probiotics as they relate to autoimmune disease.  There is increasing evidence (published studies) that the use of probiotics may protect against the development of various autoimmune diseases.   Even more exciting, the use of probiotics may delay the onset, slow the development of , or lessen the effects of AD.

With these thoughts in mind, Dr. Jones has added Ultra 4x6 Probiotics to his Basic Nutritional Recommendations (Ultra Vites and Ultra Omega-Linic).  He feels it is likely that the normal flora of the intestines has been negatively altered by our modern lifestyle and eating habits.  Whether you are healthy or are suffering from less than successful treatment of your health issues, it is important to ensure the health of the GI track.  The preformed essential fatty acids in Ultra Omega-Linic are extremely important in controlling the inflammation associated with most autoimmune diseases.

We have additional products for your consideration. 
  1. ImmunEase was formulated specifically for autoimmune disease.  The herbs in the formula have studies showing benefit to various autoimmune conditions. 
  2. Radical Resilience is doctor formulated.  Its herbs also have evidence  based properties, such as the hepatoprotective herb, Milk Thistle.

What are probiotics?Probiotics for Autoimmune

“One widely used definition, developed by the World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, is that probiotics are "live microorganisms, which, when administered in adequate amounts, confer a health benefit on the host”.  Probiotics are also defined as ‘mono- or mixed cultures of live microorganisms which, when applied to animal or man, beneficially affect the host by improving the properties of the indigenous microflora’[16].

‘A probiotic bacterium is required to fulfill certain criteria to be of benefit [1]. These include being of human origin and having generally regarded as safe status, acid and bile stability, adherence to intestinal cells, persistence for some time in the gut, ability to produce antimicrobial substances, antagonism against pathogenic bacteria, and ability to modulate the immune response.”

Does the species in the probiotic make a difference?

Lactobacillus acidophilus DDS-1 is the super strain that was developed by Dr. Shahani, the senior author in over 200 articles on probiotics at the University of Nebraska.  His DDS-1 patented lacto bacillus, present in Ultra 4x6 Probiotics, produces,  natural antibiotic-like substances.  Acidophilin, for instance, suppresses bad bacteria and enhances immune function.  

It is thought by most that a variety of strains of microorganisms, as is in Ultra 4x6 Probiotics, benefits different parts of the GI track more effectively than a single strain.  In addition, the DDS-1 strain has been shown to persist in the GI Tract when administration is stopped.

Yeast may NOT be a good source of probiotics.  This is because there is the possibility of yeast overgrowth if broad-spectrum antibiotics are needed.  Several species of yeast are capable of producing significant amounts of alcohol - especially if the individual is on a high carbohydrate diet.  These levels of alcohol can be high enough to cause problems with mood and function - as well as with blood alcohol tests.

What is Ultra 4x6 Probiotic?

Ultra 4x6 Probiotic contains 6 organisms and 4 billion CFU (colony forming units): 2 billion CFU of the patented, highly researched and clinically proven strain, DDS-1, plus 1.2 billion CFU Bifidobacterium bifidum, 200 million CFU Bifidobacterium longum, 200 million CFU Streptoccus thermophilus, 200 million CFU Lactobacillus bulgaricus and 200 million CFU Lactobacillus paracasei.

[1] Özdemir Ö. Various effects of different probiotic strains in allergic disorders: an update from laboratory and clinical data. Clin. Exp. Immunol. 160, 295–304 (2010).
[16] Joint FAO/WHO, author. Evaluation of health and nutritional properties of powder milk and live lactic acid bacteria. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and World Health Organization Expert Consultation Report. October 2001. http://www.fao.org/ag/agn/Probio/probio.htm.
[23] Pashapour N, Iou SG. Evaluation of yogurt effect on acute diarrhea in 6-24-month-old hospitalized infants. Turk. J. Pediatr. 48(2), 115-118 (2006).

This information from Nutrition Pure and Simple is intended for the use of health care professionals. It has not been evaluated by the FDA and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.  Patients should consult their physicians for advice before beginning any new health care program.