Last Updated on May 14, 2020
Let’s talk about a couple of different autoimmune diseases that specifically affect the nervous system.
There’s probably close to 100 autoimmune diseases now. I think there are about 70 currently known, but I would say there’s easily 100. There are a lot of complicated names with these conditions. One that you probably commonly know or have heard of is called MS or multiple sclerosis. That’s not an uncommon disease, but it’s not that common either. It seems to affect women probably twice as much as men. I’d say age between 40 to 60, especially white females from Northern European descent. There’s some type of genetic link somehow and it causes what we call a progressive demyelination.
So just imagine, I’ve got a cord here. Let me just show you this. Oh, look at that. I’ve got a little nervous system nerve here. Well, in fact, it’s a little hard drive, but let’s just say that’s a nerve. Now you can see that that’s got insulation on it, that black stuff around it. There’s a couple of wires inside there. Now with the myelination disease, that starts breaking down. So the installation starts breaking down, particularly in the central nervous system like in the brain and in the spinal cord. The white matter on the white nervous tissue, the insulation starts busting up in different places. And it can be really hard to pick a conditions like MS, multiple sclerosis initially. But yeah, the symptoms often can be things like numbness, tingling, fatigue, all kinds of rare and not really straight forward symptoms. So people often go for years before they get properly diagnosed.
MS isn’t really the death sentence it used to be a long, long time ago, people would often end up in wheelchairs and things like that. But now it’s a little bit different. There’s a very interesting book written by a guy regarding the dietary protocol of MS. I was just trying to think of his name now, he’s got a quite a strange name. And it involves basically taking crappy fats out of the diet. Fats are one of the worst things. The bad fats are one of the worst things you can have with central nervous system disorders because it just ups the inflammation.
But yeah, MS now there are four types. Some are what we call relapsing-remitting. They’ll get worse, they’ll get better. Others, the rarer type is not, it just keeps on progresses until the person passes away. But most people can lead a fairly normal life with MS these days. Although they may need a walking stick or have some issues, but it’s generally not a killer.
However, if we look at another condition, like Lou Gehrig’s disease. Lou Gehrig, the famous baseball player that died at 37 years of age of, I think it’s called ALS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. So this again involves the nervous system, the central nervous system. So muscles get weak, they get attacked, and the person will start getting all types of problems as a result of that. One of my friends passed away of motor neurone disease, or ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s. It’s all the same thing. In America, they call it Lou Gehrig’s disease because of a famous baseball player.
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But yeah, it’s a terrible disease. In fact, one of my friends did pass away and she was not even 50. She was 49 when she passed away last year, in fact. Quite a rare condition, not that common. I have read some reports where ALS is more associated, motor neurone disease is more associated with contact sports like rugby or when people clang/crash into each other. I’ve read other reports where it’s linked to certain chemicals.
This is not a nice condition. My friend started to develop a slight slurred speech initially, and I kept telling my wife that I thought she’d been drinking during the day. And it basically progressed, and then I thought this is MS, multiple sclerosis. But then it turned out it was, I think it was a ALS. ALS is terrible. There’s no cure, persons normally who get it won’t going to live usually not beyond five years. But I believe that Steve Hawking had motor neurone disease and lasted a long, long time with it. So extremely rare case, because nearly all people with ALS pass away around about the five to seven year mark, if they make it that long. So it’s a gradual, just slow down and paralysis of the muscles. The muscles get effected and eventually the person can’t breathe anymore. It’s a horrible condition, but it’s not common. It’s reasonably rare.
But there are many other types of neurodegenerative diseases created as a result of this toxicity. Guillain-Barré syndrome, GBS for example, that affects more of the peripheral nervous system. And 30% of that, for example, a cause we know is Campylobacter jejuni, it’s our bacteria that lives in the small bowel. So food poisoning can trigger Guillain-Barré. I seen that with two patients actually. In fact in the last several years before I stopped practice, I had two patients with Guillain-Barré syndrome.
So there are various viruses and bacteria that are linked with that particular condition. And again, leaky gut, stress, poor diets, things affecting the integrity of the gut. And then as soon as you get that permeability where the gut start absorbing macromolecules and toxins in from the diet and the environment, you’re setting up an autoimmune response. And that can go many ways because many different tissues can get affected or triggered to actually be attacked by the body’s own immune system. That’s why it’s so good always to try and eat the right food and understand the link of stress, because stress often pushes us eating crappy food too. But rest, good food, and minimizing chemicals will put you in a better position hopefully to avoid these types of conditions.
So that’s just three of probably 20 or 30 different types of autoimmune diseases that can affect the nervous system. Couple of tips for you with autoimmunity, especially if you’ve got fatigue early on in the piece, get your vitamin B12 checked early on and make sure your vitamin D is between 70 to 90 or even 100 in a blood test. Okay? That’s NM slash, I think DL or whatever the reference range is in your country. So make sure your vitamin D’s up, because many papers I’ve read show a big link between low vitamin D, for example, and higher rates of multiple sclerosis. Also, B12, check it out.