Tuesday, March 25, 2008

ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE: THE WAY TO THE FUTURE?

By Crysta Imperial Rara

Alaine Silan is a tall and pretty girl of 18 years. A BS Nursing freshman, she gushes like a teenager as she recounts her experiences which definitely set her apart from other girls her age – Alaine has acute leukemia.

Diagnosed last February 2005, her doctors wanted her to undergo a bone marrow transplant immediately. But the expenses it would entail led her parents, both schoolteachers, and siblings to opt for chemotherapy instead. Her first chemo session left her extremely traumatized and without improvement as she experienced the usual effects of the treatment – baldness, nausea and general weakness – and had to be hospitalized for a month. Her second chemo treatment about a month later almost killed her – she had to fight for her life in the hospital’s intensive care unit (ICU). For four days, she had internal bleeding, three seizures and a 50-50 chance of survival. Once her condition was stable, the family decided to take her home despite the doctors’ insistence that she start a third chemo session immediately.

Her extremely adverse reactions to chemotherapy prompted her family to seek alternative treatments for her. Today, Alaine happily explains that she does not experience the usual symptoms of leukemia.

“My body no longer has a hard time, I feel strong and I can eat now. I don’t experience bleeding. It’s as if I have been reborn,” she says.


HIGH VITAMIN DOSAGE THERAPY

Alaine goes twice weekly to an alternative health clinic in Makati that offers non-invasive and natural remedies. Her treatments include a two-hour session of ascorbate (vitamin) therapy which consists of the intravenous administration of Vitamin C with other vitamins given in dosages deemed necessary to restore the body’s normal biological processes. She also undergoes ozone therapy which helps the body destroy cancer cells, virus, fungus, bacteria and pollutants through oxidation.

“It’s a bit expensive but we see the good results. Her loss of hair from the chemo treatments really affected her psychologically. She used to be cranky and aloof. Now, she has regained her self-confidence,” quips elder sister Donna Yalong, 29. “The family is quite happy that she is not suffering now.”

Dr. Marissa Torre, who runs the clinic, explains that Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) enhances our immune system, speeds the healing of wounds, helps insulin in the control of blood sugars and limits the occurrence of stroke as it prevents blood platelets from clumping readily in the body. It also helps convert cholesterol into bile for food digestion, disperses cholesterol in the bloodstream and prevents the formation of plaques in the arteries and veins. More importantly, Vitamin C detoxifies the body against drugs and poisons from the foods we eat.

Doctors believe that Alaine developed leukemia because of the high toxic levels of arsenic and mercury in her body. This was probably due to the air pollution she was exposed to during her daily travel to and from her home in Dasmarinas, Cavite and her school (Manila Doctors’ Hospital). Alaine has responded quite well to Dr. Torre’s treatments.

HOMEOPATHY

Alaine also takes homeopathic medicines flown in from Germany. Homeopathic remedies are taken mostly from natural sources

The term "homeopathy" was coined by European physician Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843). It is a system of medicine founded on the principles of: 1) “Like cures like” which means that if the symptoms of your disease are similar to poisoning by mercury, then mercury would be your homeopathic remedy, and 2) Minimal dose - the remedy is taken in an extremely dilute form, normally one part of the remedy to around 1,000,000,000,000 parts of water.

These principles are similar to those followed in conventional allergy treatment where patients are given the allergic substance in small doses and in vaccines where an impotent form of the virus is injected to boost the immune system against that virus. Homeopaths say unlike some conventional medicines which suppress the immune system (like cough medicines that suppress coughing which is the body’s way of clearing the lungs), homeopathic remedies work in harmony with the body’s healing mechanisms.

“With conventional drugs, the toxins just go into hiding because the body doesn’t want anything to disturb its normal processes. Homeopathic remedies treat a person on an energy level and according to his body constitution,” states Torre who has helped thousands of patients using alternative therapies. “It is really the body’s immune system that will heal you, not medicines. All the treatments in this clinic enhance the immune system.”

To date, more than 100,000 doctors all over the world prescribe homeopathic remedies to some 500 million people. Homeopathy is quite popular in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland and India.


PHYSICIAN WITH A DIFFERENT VISION

Dr. Torre, 44, was first exposed to alternative medicine after graduation when she accompanied an aunt with gall bladder problems to a Western-trained doctor practicing homeopathy, naturopathy and iridology. The experience was an eye-opener and she was hooked. She then joined the “Doctors to the Barrio” volunteer program of the Department of Health and was assigned to Dinalungan in Aurora, Quezon for 9 months.

After her stint in Quezon, she flew to Nevada, Texas to attend a three-month course on alternative therapies. She is now listed in the directory of the American College for the Advancement of Medicine (ACAM). Later, she flew to Germany to further her studies in homeopathy and also took a Diplomate course from the British Institute of Homeopathy. Homeopathy must have been a natural extension of her interest in chemistry, her undergraduate degree.

As a child, she liked caring for people and was constantly exposed to natural cures. “My parents groomed me to be a doctor or a nurse. My mom was always into natural medicine. She discouraged us from eating fatty foods,” she recalls. “Now, my parents are happy that I’m practicing alternative medicine.”

Dr. Torre says she was the only one in her batch to take the road less traveled. “But my classmates have been impressed with my practice because they hear about me from patients who have gone to my clinic,” she avers. She began her alternative practice in 1996 and since then has not wavered in her resolve to use it on her patients. Even her family benefits from homeopathy. She says she has never given antibiotics or any kind of pharmaceutical drug to her husband Remigio Torre, Jr., a medical technician she met in Dinalungan and married after a 4-year courtship, and her children Bianca Alyssa, 7, Joshua Kyle, 5, and Regina Cassandra, 4.


THE OTHER THERAPIES

Many patients also go to the clinic for ion cleansing, a process where waste is extracted from the body through a unit placed in water with positive and negative electric current. To undergo this detoxification process, a person soaks his or her feet in water for 30 minutes and the negative ions in the water pull out the toxins from the body. The water changes color according to the part of the body from which the toxins come. If the water turns yellow green, for instance, that means that toxins were removed from the kidneys, bladder and urinary tract.

Ozone therapy, which inhibits the growth of new tissues like tumors, entails the intravenous administration of the gas. It is another treatment sought by the clinic’s regular patients. Ozone has the ability to kill viruses, yeast, bacteria and cancer cells.

A 52-year old businessman who makes regular visits to the clinic says the therapy cured his heart palpitations, lessened his white hair and enhanced his energy and stamina. “I used to gasp for breath while running for exercise. Now, that doesn’t happen anymore,” he confides, adding that he likes to come to the clinic because “the natural treatments are effective and reasonably-priced, the staff are so nice and the place doesn’t look like a hospital at all”.

The clinic also offers chelation therapy which uses an amino acid called EDTA (Ethylene Diamine Tetraacetic Acid) to remove harmful metals such as lead, aluminum, cadmium and nickel from the body acquired through years of toxin build-up. Experts in alternative medicine say EDTA helps people with diabetes and arthritis by improving blood circulation and removing calcium which hardens the artery walls.

Sylvia (not her real name) has been suffering from a rare combination of hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism. Doctors suspect she acquired the condition after prolonged exposure to mercury and other chemicals present in the New York air after the Twin Towers bombing in 2002. She was always tired, sleepy and coughing and so could only work part-time. ”There were times when my metabolism was slow, I was constipated and fat. There were times when my metabolism was high and I would be hyper, and thin. My eyes also bulged,” she recounts. “But after I began chelation therapy, my body is healing itself little by little. And I am working full time now.”

Dr. Torre says chelation therapy has become controversial due to allegations that it overworks and eventually destroys the kidneys as metals and toxins exit through the urine. “But there is a safe way to do it. We give supplements to help the body cope,” she explains.

The clinic has neural therapy for patients suffering from chronic pain and illness. The therapy involves the injection of local anesthetics into peripheral nerves, scars, and glands to normalize the illness-related dysfunction of the nervous system. Chronic pain in the lower back, for instance, would be treated with TRAUMEEL, a homeopathic remedy that works to repair damaged nerves.

Dr. Torre practices many kinds of alternative remedies to suit the needs of her patients. Even her means of diagnosis is non-invasive – she uses technology based on traditional Chinese medicine and developed by the Russians for their Space Program.

Although she has practiced alternative medicine for a decade now, she has not completely turned her back on Western medicine. She says allopathic and alternative medicine should be practiced in an integrative – and not a competitive - manner. She even recommends surgery when there is an urgent need for it. “There are cases that allopathic medicine can’t treat and vice versa. I believe that the hospital should be the last resort,” she states.

“As doctors, our first oath is to do no harm. With alternative remedies, we do no harm to our patients. Patients are grateful because their conditions have improved. I believe this is the way to the future.”

Alaine and her family would probably agree. Chemotherapy worsened her physical condition and made her look withered and unrecognizable to the point that she overheard two male nurses describe her as ugly and “looking like a monkey”. Today she is a blossoming and confident young lady ready to face the challenges of the future. (END)

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Published in Mr. & Ms. Magazine, Supermonthly of the the Body / Mind and Spirit

Saturday, March 15, 2008

PXP - Food for the Cells, Elixir of Youth




By Jamal Ashley Abbas

While the medical industry boasts of great advances in pharmacology and surgical procedures, including state-of-the-art million-dollar machines, millions of people are suffering and dying from chronic diseases like diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, arthritis, Alzheimer's Disease, cystic fibrosis, eating disorders, end stage renal disease, osteoporosis and of course, the Big C – Cancer. According to the New York Department of Health website, chronic diseases are responsible for 7 out of 10 deaths in the US and affect the quality of life of 90 million Americans.

In the Philippines, more than half (57 % ) of the deaths in 2002 were related to chronic diseases, according to World Health Organization (WHO) estimates.


DIABETES
Diabetes is one chronic disease that affects 3.36 million Filipinos, according to the Department of Health. It is the country’s leading cause of adult blindness, kidney failure and non-traumatic limb loss.
Lito Patricio, 52 years old, knows first-hand how diabetes can lead to all kinds of troubles. At 29, he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. He took his medications religiously. At 45, he needed laser surgery on both eyes as blood vessels in his retina erupted. Two years later, he needed to have an operation again. But this time, the pressure on his eyes was too great.

“The doctor told me my kidneys were damaged and I needed a transplant immediately,” says Lito. A transplant would cost from P 500,000.00 to P 1 million pesos. Either that or he had to be prepared for a lifetime of dialysis.

Lito remembered that his mother had died after her second dialysis. He was paralyzed with fear. He couldn’t afford a transplant and was afraid of dialysis. He told nobody about it and hoped it would just go away. On June 6, 2002, he was rushed to St. Luke’s hospital for emergency dialysis. He said he was so sick that he didn’t know where he was.

NEAR DEATH EXPERIENCE

On his second dialysis, Lito had a strange experience. “I saw my wife on one side of the bed and my son on the other,” said Lito. “Then, I saw my body on the bed, very still. I then realized I was moving up – very fast… I then saw a very bright blinding light. I knew it was God,” Lito narrated. He said he then prayed, “Lord forgive me for all my sins. If you want to take me now, I am going with you, but I am not yet finished here on Earth. My sons are still studying. And how about my employees?”

Lito swore that he then heard a very loud voice telling him: “Forget your past! Have a happy life! Do good to others!” And then he woke up.

According to Lito and his wife Josephine, the doctors were surprised that he woke up so soon. He had only 30% oxygen in his body and was supposed to be in coma.

Afterwards, Lito’s life revolved around dialysis three times a week. “I stopped dreaming. All I could do was count the days to the next dialysis,” said Lito.


STRESSED HOUSEWIFE
Mely Revilla is 48 years old, a housewife with three children. She says she is often highly stressed. When she was in her 30s, she was already hypertensive. At 38 years old, she suffered a mild stroke. By November 2004, she felt very weak. “My body was bloated. The doctor said that my kidneys were damaged,” she recalls. By January 2005, she blacked out and was rushed to the Polymedic for chronic kidney failure. She was then transferred to the National Kidney Institute. There, she got infection due to the catheter twice. She was given blood transfusion.

Weak and bed-ridden, she had to undergo dialysis treatment twice a week. She even had to be spoon-fed.

MIRACLE FOOD

Mely was introduced by a friend to a food supplement called Alfa PSP Plus or alpha polysaccharide peptide. Almost immediately, she felt her strength coming back. “After ten days of taking PSP, lab results showed that my kidneys were 70% normal!” she says.

After one month, she cut her dialysis treatment to once a week. After 2 months, she needed dialysis only once a month. After 10 months of using PSP, she stopped dialysis treatments altogether.

“Unfortunately, after 2 years of no dialysis, I had to undergo dialysis again last month because of stress and UTI (urinary tract infection),” Mely reveals. But she is confident that the dialysis is only temporary.Mely was the first dialysis patient to take PSP. Fellow dialysis patients found hope.

Lito Patricio had been undergoing dialysis 3 times a week for four years. His doctor reduced his treatments to twice a week after he started taking PSP. One year later, it was down to once a week. “PSP is a gift from Heaven! My sight became clearer, my strength came back, the pains are gone, and I regained my sex life!” says Lito.

Another diabetic and dialysis patient is 59 year-old Hermie Concepcion. He began dialysis treatments – three times a week – in May 2005. In September 2005, he started taking PSP. After 3 months, he was down to two dialysis treatments a week. Since December 2006, he has been going for dialysis only once a week.
“He used to take 12 kinds of medication for his various illnesses like hypertension and carotid stenosis (obstructed carotid artery). Now, he takes only PSP and the medicine for hypertension,” Hermie’s wife, Lota, says proudly.




POLYSACCHARIDE PEPTIDES (PSP)

Peptides are formed from the linking of amino acids. Amino acids are the building blocks of proteins. Polysaccharides are essentially carbon sugars or complex carbohydrates which are used as sources of energy by the cells.

PSPs are found in mushrooms and in cereals like barley, oats and rice. PSPs are called either alpha or beta-glucans, depending on their structural arrangements. Beta PSPs are usually found in mushrooms while Alpha PSPs are usually found in rice.



FUNCTIONAL FOOD

“PSP is functional food,” says Vicrod Brozas, COO of ENZACTA Philippines, distributor of Alfa PSP Plus, now Alfa PXP Plus.

Functional foods or nutraceuticals are foods or from foods that have supposed physiological benefits like protecting the body from chronic diseases.
According to Enzacta’s literature, “Alpha Polysaccharide-X-Peptides (is) a functional nutrient which is a combination of complex carbohydrates and vital proteins having essential and non-essential amino acids plus the most important vitamins and minerals and antioxidants in dry powdered form.”

Russell Hall, CEO of ENZACTA, which has its headquarters in Mexico City and branches in Spain, the Philippines and U.S.A., was in Manila in November 2006 for the launching of Alfa PXP Plus (an improved version of Alfa PSP plus) at the Shangri-La Hotel in Makati. He explained then the complex process of producing PXP. Various seeds were selected by specialists in nutrition, biotechnology and genetics from thousands of rice varieties – brown rice, short-grain rice, fragrant rice, etc. These were then planted in highly alkaline and toxin-free soil rich in Spirulina. The farms are located in Siam valley in Thailand which, according to ENZACTA, is “the biggest natural organic plantation treasure in the world”.

Hall said that he had just upgraded their machines where the harvested rice undergoes Hydro-Thermal Process which extract the Alpha PSP and make it 90% bio-available; i.e., the peptides are almost completely absorbed by the body’s cells.

FOOD FOR THE CELLS

Vic Brozas, a respiratory therapist by training, was amazed when after a month of taking PSP, his arthritis, hypertension and hyperacidity disappeared. Not only that, his mom’s blood pressure dropped and her arthritis and hyperacidity were cured after one month of daily PSP intake. And so were his dad’s hyperacidity and numbness of the limbs. He joined Enzacta after these astounding effects on his family.
But what shocked Vic was the effects of PSP on dialysis patients and paralyzed people. “If you lessen dialysis from three to two times or once a week, then something must be happening to the cells of the kidneys,” says Vic. “If you feed your cells the right nutrition, they become healthy.”


FITNESS GURU

Rock climber, aerobic instructor and former host of the Fitness Barkada segment on GMA 7, Mylène Imao, 32, is the picture of physical fitness. “As an athlete, I was dehydrated,” she says, “because we athletes have to keep low body weight.”


As a result of her dehydration, her kidneys were damaged. She bled constantly. “When I ran, I would bleed and excrete solid stuff,” she says. “When I drank coffee, my sides bled,” she adds.
Mylène was hospitalized. The doctors said it was severe case of UTI or gallstones. She recovered but when she did strenuous exercises, she would bleed again.


“I started taking PSP three years ago and the symptoms disappeared,” she says. “I stopped for a month; then, half of the symptoms came back so I take it regularly up to now,” she explains.

Mylène, wife and mother, works out three times a week and keeps a busy schedule. She avers, “PSP, I can’t live without it; it’s a good addiction. I take PSP now to maintain good health and reverse the aging process.”


ANTI-AGING and BEAUTY
Hans Palacios, a businessman, is amazed at the anti-aging effects of PSP. “Before PSP, I was a very different person. I was an old man, I had a lot of body aches, I took a lot of painkillers for my back. When I started taking PSP, things changed. I got my stamina, I was able to work out better, but more importantly, the pains disappeared,” he says. “PSP changed the quality of my life. It gave back my life.”

Hans introduced beauty icon and radio/TV host Cory Quirino to PSP. He says that Ms. Quirino refers to PSP / PXP as “the very foundation of a hardcore health program”.

Ms Quirino, in turn, introduced PSP/ PXP to her good friend, actress-businesswoman Isabel Rivas. According to Hans, Ms. Rivas believes that PSP / PXP truly promotes cellular regeneration, which is proven by how beautiful and smooth it has made her skin.


ENHANCED SEX LIFE

Lito and Josephine, Hermie and Lota, Hans and almost all PSP users say that PSP has an interesting side effect – Enhanced Sex Life.

Medical doctor Annabel Soriano says that the easily absorbed PSP “energizes the cells, boosts the immune system and throws out the toxins. Thus, the body can feel increased energy immediately”. Perhaps in layman’s terms, one could say, “More Energy, More Sex; No Energy, No Sex.”


BEATING CANCER

In March 2006, Amor Fajardo was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. But she couldn’t undergo chemotherapy because she was pregnant. Instead, she started taking PSP.

Eight months later, during the launch of Alfa PXP Plus at the Shangri-la in November 2006, Amor proudly proclaimed to everyone there that she had just given birth to a baby girl a few days before. She had beaten Cancer. In October 2007, she had her second child.


NEW MEDICAL PARADIGM

Since the 1860s, the Germ Theory has become the bedrock of allopathic or Western conventional medicine. Diseases are caused by germs and so medicines should kill these germs or bacteria. Damaged cells should also be killed by radiation or other means.

Since the 1990s, studies on such things as antioxidants, enzymes, glyconutrients, saccharides, polypeptides, phytonutrients, etc. suggest a new medical approach. Instead of bombarding the human body with chemical medicines or radiation to kill bacteria or cancerous cells, we can feed the body’s cells with functional foods or nutraceuticals in order to prevent chemical damage to cells, regenerate them and thus fortify the immune system.

In the new millennium, the new wonder drugs may not be drugs at all. They may simply be food – food for the body’s cells. After all, Hippocrates himself said, “"Let thy food be thy medicine."


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For comments/feedback, email the author at jamalashley@gmail.com

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Holistic Person

In Philosophy, holism is the theory that says that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. In medicine, this refers to the treatment of individuals which take into consideration not just the disease but also mental and social factors.

Holism is the opposite of reductionism where wholes are reduced to its parts. In Medicine, a person's kidney is treated as a kidney - period. Who owns that kidney is immaterial or irrelevant.

Holism, as used in this blog, regards a human being as a Whole Being - with body, mind and spirit.

Everything affects everything else. One's life is affected by everythin -- one's eating habits, one's thinking, one's relationships with friends and lovers, etc.

This blog hopes to add to the blogosphere's discussion on Holistic Living.