Archive for November, 2010

A Cause for (some) Celebration

I’ve been holding back. I’ve been couching my words. I’ve been wary of posting anything with too much excitement or too much fanfare. I know this therapy is not a panacea or a cure-all, I know it hasn’t worked miracles (well, for some it has), and that is hasn’t worked for everyone or every condition.

Up until this point, no matter how good I felt or how encouraging my bowels had been, I always had the tiny, nagging thought that maybe, just maybe it was too good to be true. Maybe it was a cruel coincidence, that the helminths didnt “take” and I was just feeling better out of randomness. Or worse, it was placebo. No longer.

Two weeks ago I sent a stool sample to Marc at AIT for analysis, and the results came back as simply “very good ova production.” I know it sounds silly, but just the simple confirmation that I’m hosting a healthy population of helminths is a huge relief for me. Up until this point, I had no actual confirmation that I even had a single helminth alive inside me. Now I can finally start to fully enjoy the feeling of being well. And I do mean well. I was inoculated on June 20th, about five months ago. The first month was up and down, I still had some bad bowel days. The second month, things got better. Third month, I was basically having great BMs everyday. Over the last two months, I have had perfect bowels, every single day. One BM per day, solid, no mucus, no pain. Every time I go into the bathroom it’s like christmas morning. Except instead of a new bicycle or a sony playstation, I get a nice, solid poop.

Oh, over the past few months I had tapered my IBD medicine (Colazal) to just 1/3 of a dose. Now I’m completely off from it, have been for over a month now. Have not seen any changes at all.

I can only hope to continue experience such excellent results. I’ve been biting my tongue for so long, trying to be patient. I still can’t say “mission accomplished,” but I am feeling more confident about this therapy by the day.

So:

Here’s to you (all), my little colon comrades. Kick up your feet (err tail), stretch out your legs, I mean your, uh, body? Relax, feel at home. Find a nice mucosal membrane and thread your little tail in, take some nibbles of my nutritious intestinal lining tissue, then maybe have a nap. Eat, sleep, grow big and strong and live a full life. Don’t forget to flex your tail muscles when that slender and curvaceous female whipworm wiggles on by. Go ahead, go ask her out. Don’t be shy. I hear the view from the  top of my cecum is excellent this time of year. Take her out, show her the world (of my intestines). Yeah, that’s right, move a little closer. Wait until the moment is just right for that first.. kiss (do they do that?). You were born for this. Try to work with the rhythm of the peristalsis contractions. I’m expecting a healthy ova production so keep up the mating, my little comrades in love.


Hookworms as the new Claritin, Smoking & Allergies

Are Hookworms the Next Claritin?

Discover.com piece on helminths and Jasper. I thought the reader comments were pretty interesting.

More interesting, actually, is their article on the Dutch scientists (of course) who have found that smoking can actually decrease respiratory allergies. This is particularly interesting for two reasons. Fact: Heavy smoking causes lung cancer. Yet, the huge decrease in smoking among the population (think between 1960–1990s) has coincided with a broad hygienification (I might have made that word up) of the U.S. Smoking is also known to lower a person’s immune system generally. In addition, smoking has had a proven anti-inflammatory effect on Ulcerative Colitis, so much so that some people develop UC after quitting. It’s interesting to think that in combination, perhaps both a decrease in smoking and a simultaneous increase in hyper-hygiene (anti-bacteria everything, not letting kids play in and/or eat the dirt) has resulted in the absolute explosion of allergies and asthma, as well as the gamut of other autoimmune diseases like IBD, MS, Lupus, etc.

Can Cigarettes Decrease the Effects of Respiratory Allergies?

I of course do not advocate picking up a smoking habit to fight allergies, or IBD for that matter. But it’s an interesting anomaly to think about. I know many of my friends who have allergies or asthma blame their parents’ smoking habits for causing their bad reactions. What seems likely, in this case, is that they were already auto-immune prone from living in hygienic environment, and the smoking was reacted to as an allergen thanks to their over-charged immune response. Smoke has been a presence in homes and dwellings throughout human history–when humans had a more natural body-ecology and a resulting balanced immune system, I doubt smoke would have resulted in this response. It’s hard to imagine cavemen sitting around a fire complaining about their asthma or allergies. “Ug! I told you to smoke roast that buffalo meat OUTSIDE! Ugh, and please wipe the blood and guts off your hands BEFORE you engorge yourself!”

Of course, this is all just musings on my part. To be taken lightly.