Inflammation, more common than you think…..

Inflammation, its more common than you think…

Food is medicine, water cleans and sooths, herbs really heal, supplements can really alter your internal chemistry and some diseases are inherited and need to be managed over time rather than cured. That means for many of you, a long term commitment to your health rather than a shot gun approach.

Most naturopaths and natural health professionals are aware of the connection between your diet and health, but your general practitioner is often too busy or not aware. They are busy giving you referrals and covering their own liability. Many of you go to the doctor when you’re in pain on any level. What happens then? A pain killer, a referral for a test and or specialist, an anti-depressant?

People have serious problems, alcoholism, depression, inflammatory diseases like arthritis, stomach ulcers let alone the all too common cancers that occur with alarming regularity.  People usually come to see me for structural problems, postural training, for back pain and commonly because all other practitioners have failed to identify, help or even improve their condition. So many people may have painful bits but they also have deep seated behavioural problems some stemming from belief systems, but many ailments arise from uncorrected chemistry from bad fuel (stupid or impulsive food choices), not enough water or inherited dyscrasia.

I am in some ways fortunate to have inherited through my Irish ancestry an inflammatory condition, that from a young age has affected my joints. So I have become the anti-inflammatory queen. I know more about anti inflammatory herbs and supplements than most people. I also know more about anti-inflammatory behaviour than I can possibly begin to truly describe. In some ways my inflammatory condition drove me to understand my posture, made me sensitive to small nuances of my body and mind’s condition and definitely drove me towards yoga and especially its deeper practices of movement and breath coordination and meditation.

Well over 10% of our population have this condition, Pyroluria. It is also known as Pyrrole Disorder and Kryptopyrrole. It occurs in a large majority of people with addictive problems, anger management disorders, personality and psychiatric disorders.  Pyroluria can best be described as a problem with the chemical processing of the oxygen carrying molecule in your blood, the haemoglobin. When the haemoglobin die they  bind with your B6 and Zinc and carry it out of your body, depleting you of those essential nutrients.  The waste-product of haemoglobin is a metabolite   called hydroxyhemopyrrolin-2-one (HPL) also known as Pyrrole. People who suffer from Pyroluria produce excessive amounts of these Pyrroles which bind to or inhibit the nutrients; Zinc (1-7), Biotin 8, and the Omega 6 Fat GLA from reaching their targets within your body. This effectively renders these nutrients unavailable to you.

Here’s a list of the symptoms:
Abnormal body fat distribution,  Lack of regular menstrual cycles, Acne, Loss of appetite, Allergies, Low libido, Amnesia spells, Low tolerance to stress, Anger – explosive Migraines, Anxiety/anxious Mood swings, Argumentative – likes to argue, Morning nausea, Cold hands and feet, Motion sickness,  Constipation, Much higher capability in the evening than mornings,  Creaking in joints, Nervous exhaustion,  Delayed puberty, Nervousness,  Delusions, Overwhelmed in stressful situations,  Depression, Pale skin, poor tanning or burn easy in the sun,  Difficulty remembering dreams, Panic attacks,  Dramatic Paranoia,  Dyslexia, Pessimism,  Early greying of hair, Poor memory, Eczema, Poor morning appetite/tendency to skip breakfast,  Elevated eosinophil’s,  Preference for spicy or heavily flavoured foods,  Emotionally unstable, Prone to stitches when running now or as a child, Fatigue, Reading difficulties, Fluid retention, Seizures,  Frequent colds, fevers, and chills,  Sensitivity to bright light, Frequent ear infections as a child, Sensitivity to smells,  Hallucinations, Severe inner tension,  Hyperactivity, Skin rashes, Hypersensitivity to noise, Significant growth after the age of 16, Hyper-pigmentation of the skin, Social withdrawal, Hypoglycaemia, Substance abuse, Inability to think clearly, Temper tantrums, Insomnia, Tendency towards iron deficient anaemia,  Intolerance to alcohol, White flecks on your nails, No half moons on your fingernails, Tingling in the arms and legs, Intolerance to drugs, Tremors,  Intolerance to some protein foods, Unusual smelling body odour, Joint pain,  Unusual smelling breath, Knee pain

How far did you get with that list before you freaked out well there’s more. There’s another syndrome called the leaky gut syndrome associated with Pylorurea. The Leaky Gut Syndrome  is also known as intestinal permeability, is a condition whereby   microscopic holes occur in your intestinal wall and allow undigested  food, bacterial by-products, poisons and toxins to pass into your  bloodstream. Leaky Gut Syndrome is widespread in sufferers of Pyroluria  and a common factor in driving up blood Pyrrole levels.

My knee pain was getting worse and I had never ever had half moons on my nails, both symptoms of Pylorurea.  I was lucky as in some ways my absolute love of oysters had staved off some of the worst of the symptoms that is zinc deficiency….. Now I have better functional knees, a better temper and why well I undertook a anti oxidant, general mineral, zinc,  boron, magnesium and occasional copper supplementation. It also helps to restrict carbohydrates and increase your intake of protein and vegetables. Ask for help if these measures don’t work, there are simple lab tests that can give a diagnosis and levels of supplements.

Dr Alison Knight, ( is a Nutritional Medicine Physician, one of 150 Medical Doctors aware and trained in the affect of our foods, supplements and herbs on our health and behaviour.  Natural therapist like Alison and myself are lucky to be exposed to these medical insights through our own  experiences.  If you are ill or in pain do not give up looking for answers, follow your instincts with regard to choosing a practitioner and life will become a pleasure again.


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