Diary of Unknown Symptoms

Mystery of the Internal Vibration

Entry for May 19, 2008

Back in February I ordered a bunch of amino acids from a health food company in the states because I wasn’t able to find them anywhere here in Canada. I tried them here and there in different doses without the any real results. I thought there would be a noticable difference because I had followed the results of the amino acid test. When I didn’t get the results I was looking for, it was off in another direction and I tried something else.

Today I decided to try them again. There are a number of other amino acids that depend on aspartic acid so it seemed like a logical place to start and interestingly, the amino acid test indicated that I had low levels of five of the six. I always feel like a detective when I find stuff like this. Find the needle in a hay stack that leads to the breakthough…I can only hope!

Aspartic Acid

Aspartic acid plays an important role in the citric acid cycle, or Krebs cycle, during which other amino acids and biochemicals, such as asparagine, arginine, lysine, methionine, threonine, isoleucine, and several nucleotides are synthesized.

Low aspartic acid can also be associated with low calcium and magnesium levels.

December 3, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for February 03, 2008

I’m really happy about getting results with SAM-e and the other thing I’ve noticed? The vibration has stopped since I started taking it. So is it because I found the root cause or is it because it has a calming effect on the body?

August 19, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for February 02, 2008

SAMe Is Essential For Brain Function

SAM-e (S-Adenosylmethionine) is an amino acid derivative that has been clinically proven.  Found in all living cells, SAM-e is also called activated methionine (an essential amino acid) since it is formed by the combining of ATP with methionine. The body makes SAM-e from the amino acid methionine and the cofactor vitamins B6, B12 and folic acid.

SAMe is the primary methyl donor available in the brain. Some of the biochemicals essential for proper nervous system function that benefit from SAMe include epinephrine, norepinephrine, serotonin and dopamine. Transmethylation in the brain includes actions upon the phospholipids that are the primary components of all cell membranes.

Supplementation with SAMe improves the body’s ability to manufacture phospholipids for use in the brain and helps keep neurotransmitters in balance.

Animal studies show that SAM-e increases levels of serotonin, but not the same way as SSRI or tricyclics work. They prolong the effect of a neurotransmitter by blocking its reuptake after it ferries a signal across the gap from one nerve cell to the next.

SAM-e, by contrast, appears to actually build neurotransmitters by donating part of its own chemical makeup, a methyl group. A common currency in metabolic processes, methylation also feeds the fats that stabilize nerve cell membranes and the receptors on them, making brain cells more responsive to a broad array of operations.

 I love this article for the comparison between Sam-e and Paxil (SSRI drug). I wonder if the neurologist knew this? Probably not. Who am I kidding?

After my discovery a few months back with the active form of B vitamins for better absorption, I’m always interested in supplements with higher absorption rates and SAM-e is no exception. A few days after taking SAM-e and there is a definate WOW factor. Once again, overnight my eyes feel stonger and my skin is so smooth and fantastic!

I think it’s safe to say the amino acid test is very accurate with a low level of methionine. Now if I can only find the other ones…

August 19, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 31, 2008

Methionine – Allergy Fighter

Claims for methionine in medicine were initiated by Adelle Davis (1970), who suggested that methionine was deficient in toxemia of pregnancy, childhood rheumatic fever and hair loss. Today, we see a more defined role for methionine as a treatment for some forms of depression, schizophrenia and Parkinson’s disease.

Methionine is one of the essential amino acids needed by humans and higher animals; bacteria can make it from aspartic acid. Some methionine may be absorbed from the bacteria of the gut flora under starvation conditions. The average human needs about 10 mg/kg of methionine and cysteine or as much as 700 mg a day of methionine. This minimal daily requirement is significantly less than the optimal need for methionine.

Methionine-deficient diets in experimental animals result in impaired growth and elevated blood spermidine. Normal methionine metabolism depends on the utilization of folic acid which can be elevated in the serum of methionine deficient patients. Some foods are rich in methionine. A cup of low-fat cottage cheese can contain up to a gram of methionine. Most cheeses contain 100 to 200 mg per ounce.

Methionine supplements lower blood histamine by increasing the breakdown of histamine. It is also a useful treatment for copper poisoning and for lowering serum copper. Methionine’s three major metabolic roles are as methyl and sulfur donor and a precursor to other sulfur amino acids such as cysteine and taurine.

Methionine supplementation is unusual because the D, L form is probably more effective than just the L form. This is probably due to D-L salt formation. Methionine is well absorbed in the brain where it is converted into SAM, which can increase adrenalin-like neurotransmitters in the brain. Methionine, the methyl donor, may produce active brain stimulants and degrade blood histamine. Methionine supplementation has been particularly useful in depressing the high histamine type (histadelia). It has been found to be more effective than MAO inhibitors in depression.

Methionine is a useful adjunct therapy in some cases of Parkinson’s disease, because it can stimulate the production of dopa. Methionine may be of value in acrodermatitis enteropathica, a rare disease of zinc deficiency. Methionine, like other sulfur amino acids, protects against the effects of radiation.

Methionine supplementation may help patients with heroin addiction, who often are unusually high in histamine and have a low pain threshold. Detoxification and withdrawal from barbiturates or amphetamines may also be assisted by methionine. Methionine may be useful for patients with chronic pain and is thought to lower blood cholesterol.

At present, we use methionine for patients with high blood histamine, depression, high copper, high cholesterol and chronic pain, allergies and asthma. Measurement of plasma levels is useful for guiding therapy. Doses of 1 to 2 g of methionine can raise plasma methionine levels 2 to 4 times above normal.

There are usually small elevations in other amino acids. We have had one case where taurine levels were raised as high as the methionine levels and other cases where taurine was not significantly elevated. Elevated levels of taurine, a methionine metabolite, are a hidden benefit of methionine therapy. These elevations may be the basis of methionine’s therapeutic effects.

August 17, 2009 Posted by | Health | , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 31, 2008

So now I discover a link between SAM-e and melatonin.

SAM-e Is Necessary for Melatonin

One of the most exciting things about SAMe is that it is melatonin’s daytime equivalent. The natural synthesis of melatonin during the night is dependent on the synthesis of SAMe during the day. SAMe is necessary for the biochemical reaction that converts serotonin into melatonin. (Serotonin is the neurotransmitter that drugs like Prozac elevate). SAMe and melatonin are entwined in a circadian rhythm that see-saws back and forth as the sun rises and sets. SAMe is melatonin’s other half: when melatonin levels shoot up at night, SAMe stays low. But during the day, when melatonin falls, SAMe levels climb. Without adequate SAMe during the day, neither melatonin nor serotonin can be synthesized. And both are dependent on light and dark.

One of the most fascinating animal studies on SAMe and melatonin was published in the Journal of Neurochemistry in 1995. Researchers demonstrated in great detail the perfect orchestration that occurs between levels of SAMe and melatonin. The so-called “nyctohemeral” rhythm (pertaining to both day and night) was documented almost minute-by-minute. Data were translated onto graphs showing the see-saw relationship between melatonin and SAMe (Fig. 1).

Both melatonin and SAMe are controlled by an internal “clock” that knows lightness from darkness. In the evening, about 30 minutes before sunset, levels of SAMe shoot up to their highest level. They stay there for about an hour, and then suddenly drop. When this happens, melatonin kicks in. Melatonin increases for four hours, while SAMe drops. Five hours into the night, melatonin hits its high, and SAMe hits its low. Melatonin stays elevated until three hours before sunrise, when it abruptly falls. Meanwhile, SAMe builds up. Five hours into the day (around 11:00 A.M.), SAMe reaches its peak level again, then begins a gradual descent until evening.

Serotonin levels follow roughly the same pattern-higher during the day and lower at night. It appears that the serotonin synthesized during the day is used at night to make melatonin. SAMe is absolutely crucial for the natural synthesis of melatonin because it donates a methyl group molecule to the enzyme that converts the acetylated form of serotonin to melatonin.

Melatonin is not traditionally though of as a hormone that effects mood, but it does. When melatonin levels are low, you tend to wake in the wee hours in a panicked state, even if things may be generally okay in your life. You will wake fearing the worst about the least important things or feeling depressed for no real reason. Melatonin is made from the amino acid tryptophan, which also makes serotonin. It’s production in the brain requires methionine and SAMe.

What a fantastic article. Off to the health food store looking for SAM-e!

August 17, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 31, 2008

I’ve been doing a lot of reading about lecithin and methionine lately and I came aross something called s-adenosyl methionine with a link to the adrenals and how it can be effected by methionine and riboflavin deficiencies. This sounds all too familiar…

Methionine is also used by the body to manufacture SAMe, also known as S-adenosyl-methionine or S-adenosyl-L-methionine. SAMe is found in every cell in the body. SAMe has been shown to be effective as a treatment for osteoarthritis and associated joint pain, stiffness, and inflammation.

It is important to note that dietary supplements of methionine do not appear to elevate SAM-e levels or have the same effect on mood states found with SAM-e. Doses of 200-600 mg per day may be effective in elevating mood and treating mild depression.

Highest concentration of SAM in body (in order):
1) Adrenal gland
2) Pineal gland

“Deficiencies of any of the active coenzyme forms of vitamins B2, B6, B12 and folic acid will disrupt SAMe production, and conversely diminished SAMe production will impair conversion of folic acid and B12 to their coenzyme forms.

August 17, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 25, 2008

Happy with the fantastic results with my eyes after taking Lipoic acid but disappointed about still having the vibration, I decided today to start taking Lecithin. Everything I’ve read about Lecithin seem to suggest that it would be extremely beneficial to the nervous system and it supplies the body with methionine.

Lecithin is essential not only for tissue integrity of the nervous and glandular system in all living cells, but has been regarded as also the most effective generator and regenerator of great physical, mental and glandular activity. Shattered nerves, depleted brain power, waning activity of vital glands, find in lecithin, especially in the cellular structure of the nervous system and endocrine glands a source of dynamic energy.”

Lecithin is the most abundant of the phospholipids. It is a fatty food substance, which serves as a structural material for every cell in the body. It is an essential constituent of the human brain and nervous system. It forms 30 per cent of the dry weight of the brain and 17 per cent of the nervous system.

Lecithin is also an important component of the endocrine glands and the muscles of the heart and kidneys. It makes up 73 per cent of the total liver fat. Nervous, mental or glandular overactivity can consume lecithin faster than its replacement.

The body uses methionine to derive a brain food called choline. Therefore, choline or lecithin (which is high in choline) should be added to the diet so that the supply of methionine is not depleted. Beans are low in methionine but rich in lysine; and, since most grains are low in lysine and rich in methionine, combining beans and grains will give a full complement of amino acids.

June 14, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 24, 2008

Today I thought I’d make a short list of the amino acids that had very low levels in the test so I can focus on these one at a time:

2-Aspartic acid (Aspartate)
5-Asparagine (Made from 2-Aspartic acid)

Below is a quick overview of each amino acid and the best source of food to eat.

Asparagine: Asparagine is needed to maintain a balance, preventing over nervousness. Aspartic Acid and Asparagine have high concentrations in the hippocampus and the hypothalamus. The hippocampus is a part of the brain that plays the main role in short-term memory, while the hypothalamus is involved in the biology of emotion, and serves as a neurological gate between the brain and the rest of the nervous system. Asparagine deficiency could be a contributing cause of fatigue and immune system stress including autoimmune disorders, infections and severe allergies. Asparagine is most commonly found in poultry, dairy, eggs, fish, lactalbumin, legumes, meat, nuts, seafood, seeds, soy, whey, whole grains, and beef.

Aspartic Acid: Aspartic Acid is a non-essential amino acid, existing mainly in the form of its amide, asparagine. It also performs an important role in the urea cycle and helping to transport minerals. Aspartic acid is a nonessential amino acid which is made from glutamic acid by enzymes using vitamin B6. The amino acid has important roles in the urea cycle and DNA metabolism.

Aspartic acid may also be a significant immunostimulant of the thymus and can protect against some of the damaging effects of radiation. Involved in immune system function by enhancing immunoglobulin production and anti- body formation. Calcium and magnesium deficiencies. Because of this association, low aspartic acid levels should lead the clinician to test for calcium and/or magnesium deficiencies. Aspartic Acid can be easily converted to glucose when demand for glucose exceeds supply. Aspartic acid plays an important role in the citric acid cycle, or Krebs cycle, during which other amino acids and biochemicals, such as asparagine, arginine, lysine, methionine, threonine, and isoleucine, are synthesized. Aspartic acid is found in high levels throughout the human body, especially in the brain, sprouting seeds, oat flakes, luncheon meats, sausage meat, wild game, avocado, asparagus.

Glycine: Glycine is an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system, especially in the spinal cord. High concentrations of glycine are found not only in the muscles, but in the skin and other connective tissues as well. Almost 1/3 of collagen, which keeps the skin and connective tissue firm and flexible, is composed of glycine. (High amounts of Glycine are also found in gelatin, which is a form of denatured collagen). Without glycine the body would not be able to repair damaged tissues; the skin would become slack as it succumbed to UV rays, oxidation, and free radical damage, and wounds would never heal. Sources of glycine: High protein food contains good amounts of glycine and is present in fish, meat, beans, and dairy products.

Isoleucine: Nitrogen balance in adults. L-Isoleucine is a branched chain amino acid found in high concentrations in muscle tissues. Food sources include almonds, cashews, chicken, chickpeas, eggs, fish, lentils, liver, meat, rye, seeds, and soy protein.

Methionine: Methionine is a precursor for the other sulfur amino acids, cystine, taurine, and glutathione. Methionine plays a role in cysteine, carnitine and taurine synthesis by the transsulfuration pathway, lecithin production, the synthesis of phosphatidylcholine and other phospholipids. Methionine helps reduce histamine levels, which are amino acids that control dilation of blood vessels and influence brain function. Methionine is essential for the formation of healthy collagen used to form skin, nails, and connective tissue, and helps reduce the level of inflammatory histamines in the body. People with conditions linked to excessive histamine production, such as arthritis and chronic allergies, may benefit from methionine supplementation. Food sources include beans, eggs, fish, garlic, lentils, meat, onions, soybeans, seeds, yogurt.

Threonine: Required for formation of collagen. Needed by the gastrointestinal tract for normal functioning. Threonine is an important component in the formation of protein, collagen, elastin and tooth enamel. It is also important for production of neurotransmitters and health of the nervous system. Threonine is one of the immune-stimulating nutrients (cysteine, lysine, alanine, and aspartic acid are others), Threonine is found in most meats and fish, dairy foods, eggs, wheatgerm, bananas, carrots, nuts, beans and seeds. Rich sources of threonine include meats, dairy foods and eggs. Wheat germ, many nuts, beans, and seeds, and vegetables contains some small level of threonine.

June 14, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 23, 2008

And here’s someone who has suggested a revision to the Budwig Diet. Fascinating reading…

The Budwig Diet Revision

Germany’s Dr. Joanna Budwig is widely credited for discovering that 2 simple food items, cold-pressed flax seed oil and low-fat cottage cheese, will cure or prevent many forms of cancer and a long list of other degenerative diseases including cardiovascular diseases and skin diseases. But the 50-year old “Budwig Diet” is long in the tooth and newer data has emerged that shows where we can improve on it.

Sulfur-rich protein and calcium in the “Budwig protocol” is provided by cottage cheese. Because many people can not take “dairy”, lets look more closely at the cottage cheese. Human milk is higher in whey and much lower in casein than cow milk or goat milk; casein is the main protein in cheese and cottage cheese. Caseins differ somewhat; cow milk contains a lot of alpha-casein, which because of its different properties is the main cause of milk and “dairy” indigestion in humans. Beta lactoglobulins in cow milk can also be problematic as allergens, and cow milk also contains more alpha s1-casein than goat milk. All of this explains why many people find goat milk less problematic than cow milk.

Cottage Cheese vs Whey Protein

The Budwig Diet revision uses undenatured whey instead of cottage cheese. Undenatured whey contains the sulfur-containing amino acids methionine and cysteine compounds including cystine. Methionine is transformed into cysteine by the liver. Cellular cysteine is the rate-limiting factor in production of glutathione, the body’s master antioxidant and detoxifier. Glutathione is crucial to life; it’s involved in ATP energy generation, immune system support, liver and other organ support, reducing toxin load and oxidative stress, and importantly, it shrinks tumors when levels are maintained. Cottage cheese doesn’t boast those benefits; in fact it’s only a sulfur amino acid source.

June 8, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 17, 2008

I’ve been researching methionine lately and here’s a link to lecithin which the Naturopath suggested.

An essential amino acid, methionine is not synthesized in the body and so must be obtained from food sources or from dietary supplements. Good food sources of methionine include beans, eggs, fish, garlic, lentils, meat, onions, soybeans, seeds, and yogurt. Because the body uses methionine to derive a brain food called choline, it is wise to supplement the diet with choline or lecithin (which is high in choline) to ensure that the supply of methionine is not depleted.

Lecithin is a phos-phorized fat (a compound of phosphorus, fat and nitrogen) which is an important ingredient of the tissues in your nerves, brain and endocrine glands. Your nervous system, for instance, uses lecithin to aid in generating nerve electricity. When your nerves are plentifully supplied with lecithin, your body abounds in nervous energy; and when the supply of lecithin get low, as it does at the end of the day, your nerve energy decreases, and you say you are ‘tired and sleepy.’ A serious deficiency of lecithin in the diet can bring on a nerve exhaustion that is characterized by a chronic fatigue which rest does not alleviate. Lecithin is also important for your brain, since your ‘organ of thinking’ contains approximately 28 per cent of this substance, that is, provided you are sane. The brains of persons suffering from serious mental illnesses contain less than half this amount of lecithin.

Sounds like taking lecithin is more important than methionine!

June 5, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 13, 2008

HOLY COW!! I wake up with a brand new set of eyes. I don’t know how else to describe it other than I can definitely feel that my eyes are stronger this morning. Looks like the test results are accurate! I’ll need to take a closer look at Methionine when I get a chance.

I love it when I discover something like this. I had never really heard or understood the importance of Lipoic acid before yesterday. Thank you Dr. Google once again!

June 4, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , | Leave a comment

Entry for January 11, 2008

I’m going through the results one amino acid at a time. I start with methionine and here’s a perfect reason why I love using Dr. Google for research.

Lipoic Acid

Features & Benefits

  • Water and lipid-soluble antioxidant
  • Promotes normal nerve function
  • Promotes healthy pancreatic function
  • Helps maintain healthy eyes

Gets its two sulfur atoms primarily from the sulfur-containing amino acid methionine. For this reason, a methionine deficiency can reduce the body’s ability to make lipoic acid.

Nerves: Protection of neurons (nerve cells) appears to be a major role of lipoic acid. In humans, amounts of 400-800 mg of ALA daily have been shown to promote healthy nerve function. The first study (known by its German initials DEKAN) involved 39 people given 800 mg lipoic acid orally and 34 people given placebo for four months. The people taking lipoic acid showed a significant improvement in heart rate variability, an objective measure of the autonomic nerves serving the heart. This improvement was significant compared to the control group. There were no notable changes in adverse symptoms between the two groups. Oral doses under 600 mg daily have not been effective for nerve health in several studies.

Eyes: Lipoic acid may also help maintain normal pressure of the fluid in the eye, according to one human study. A group of 19 people given 150 mg of lipoic acid orally for one month were shown to have a significant improvement in visual function compared to a control group treated with placebo. A dose of 75 mg daily was not effective in this study. Oxidation within the lens of the eye may contribute to declining clarity of vision with age. Lipoic acid has been shown to protect animal lenses from such damage. Human studies have not yet been performed confirming this benefit.

Nowhere in the eight page report is there any mention of something called Lipoic acid and the Naturopathic didn’t mention it either. If it helps with healthy nerve function and healthy eyes then this is something I have needed for a very long time. More research needed…

June 3, 2009 Posted by | Health | , , , , | Leave a comment

Entry for October 21, 2007

Time to change up the vitamins a little. Today I’m going to add potassium. People with stressed adrenals are supposed to be low in potassium and it’s something I’ve added here and there but to change things up, I’ll add it again. I’ve also read about people with high sugar diets who can have low levels of potassium. It’s worth trying it again. I’m always thinking that I’m missing something obvious or overlooked something simple but until I get it, I will keep trying…

Also been doing a lot of reading about something called Glutathione and how a supplement called “NAC” can help.

7 Natural Ways To Increase Glutathione Production

Glutathione has recently become a cornerstone to improving health naturally.

You may already be aware that increasing the amount of glutathione your body produces each day is very beneficial to many of the natural systems that make and keep you HEALTHY.

Hopefully, you are also keenly aware that your personal level of glutathione directly affects your body’s ability to reduce and control chronic inflammation.

So, how does one increase personal glutathione production?

7 Natural Glutathione Boosters

Since the amount of cysteine in our body determines how much glutathione your body can make, why not just eat cysteine as a supplement? Well, you can, but research shows there would be negligible benefits and potential risks. Cysteine taken as a dietary supplement can promote hypercysteinemia and potential toxicity.

Methionine is indeed a precursor of glutathione but the metabolic transformation of methionine into glutathione is a complex process which has the potential for “going astray”. For example, methionine is also a precursor of homocysteine, a risk factor in the development of atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries).

Melatonin is produced by the pineal gland in the brain and has many roles in the body, one being its ability to raise glutathione levels in certain tissues of the body, including brain, liver, and muscle tissue. The long term safety of products that promote melatonin production has not been established and should be used in consultation with appropriate health professionals.

Glutamine is an amino acid found in abundance in our body. It is tremendously beneficial to the body and is easily found in a healthy diet. Also, supplemental glutamine must be kept absolutely dry or it will degrade into ammonia, a toxin to the body. Due to its abundance in a healthy diet and the risks of storing it, glutamine is not an ideal supplement.

Lipoic Acid (alpha-lipoic acid)
Lipoic acid occurs naturally in the body but can also be taken as a supplement with effectiveness. This supplement works well in conjunction with healthy levels of glutathione but studies show that if taken by a person whose glutathione levels are too low, lipoic acid actually promotes oxidation.

Silymarin (milk thistle)
This herbal extract seems to stimulate the growth and regeneration of damaged liver cells but also has been shown to significantly increase glutathione production. However, some toxic reactions are noted by some, such as gas, cramps and diarrhea.

Whey Proteins
Fresh or “bioactive” milk whey contains potent glutathione precursors. Unfortunately, by the time milk reaches your table, it has been pasteurized and has lost its bioactivity, and its glutathione enhancing benefits. However, a neutraceutical called Immunocal is available which is essentially the whey proteins harvested from milk and kept in a bioactive or undenatured state. There are no known side effects associated with taking bioactive whey proteins and, since there is no lactose in whey proteins, lactose intolerant people are not adversely affected.

Here’s another suggestion I found:

Raise glutathione levels:

  • Selenium 200 mcg/day
  • N-acetyl-cysteine 1-2000 mg/day (especially if prone to nasal congestion)
  • l-glutamine: 3,000 mg/day (especially if prone to stomach irritation)

January 17, 2008 Posted by | Health | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


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