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What Dr. Edmund Devroey, MD,  has to say about the following issue: 

from the "Longevity Institute"

Read these wise words of
Edmund Devroey, MD

Get a wealth of information at his website:    http://www.longevinst.org

It’s brilliant!  Buy his book today!  http://www.theamericandiet.com

Allergy and Nutrition

A central function of the immune system is to distinguish foreign molecules from the molecules that belong to tissues of the body. The immune system responds to foreign molecules by multiplying specialized white blood cells (lymphocytes) and by producing antibodies.

 

In allergy the immune response is excessive. The intensity of an immune response is modulated by prostaglandins hormones. We make two types of prostaglandins hormones. Type 1 increases immune response, type 2 reduces it. A useful immune response depends on the balance between the two types. We make prostaglandins from Essential Fatty Acids (EFAs) exclusively. There are two types of EFAs, the Omega-6 and the Omega-3 EFAs. We use the omega-6 EFAs to make the prostaglandins that increase immune response, and we make prostaglandins that reduce the immune response from omega-3 EFAs only. The omega-6 EFAs are abundant in our diet, while the omega-3 EFAs are very scarce. The omega-6 to omega-3 ratio in the American diet is about 12 to 1, in the Australian diet the omega-6 to omega-3 ratio is around 18 to 1, instead of an ideal 2 to 1. With ratios higher than 2 to 1, the immune system is overactive. With ratios around or higher that 10 to 1 the immune system runs with no brakes. Hence, the proliferation of allergy in a population on an omega-3 EFA deprived diet.

 

To correct the excessive omega-6 to omega-3 ratio in the diet, we should avoid omega-6 EFAs rich fats and oils and supplement the diet with omega-3 EFAs rich fats and oils. Omega-3 EFAs are available in flax seeds, in cold ocean fish (sardine, salmon, mackerel, and herring), and in fish oil supplements. Here we have to make a distinction between Alpha Linolenic Acid (ALA), Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA. ALA is a short chain omega-3 EFA found in flax seed, and in flax seed oil. EPA and DHA are long chain omega-3 EFAs. ALA has little biochemical function except to contribute to cell membrane fluidity, and to be the raw material to make EPA and DHA. The conversion of ALA into EPA and DHA is a slow process. In best conditions 5 to 7 percent of the ingested ALA is converted into longer chain omega-3 EFAs only. People that can not convert enough ALA need food and supplements containing EPA and DHA.

 

When correcting the diet to reduce autoimmunity, we have to take into account the life span of the lymphocytes the immune system has multiplied, the lymphocytes that attack foreign bodies and the lymphocytes that produce antibodies. Once the storage of EPA and DHA is replenished—it takes about 6 weeks, the omega-3 derived prostaglandins production halts the lymphocyte multiplication. However the lymphocytes produced previously are still available. The lifespan of lymphocytes is from six months to two years. Therefore six months is the period of time one has to consider for some improvement to become noticeable and two years for remission to occur.

 

Some food (offending food) contains molecules that stimulate the production of omega-6 derived prostaglandins. A high blood sugar level (hyperglycemia) also stimulates the production of omega-6 derived prostaglandins. People with allergy should avoid eating offending food and food that increase the blood sugar level, like refined sugar, and food with a high glycemic index. 

 

A list of immune system offending food, an informative text about hyperglycemia with food listed by its glycemic index, a list of food with its essential fatty acid content, and the text above are available in the website of the Longevity Institute at http://www.longevinst.org 

Copyright: 2003-2004 Edmund Devroey MD.  (Be sure to buy his book today!)

 

Immune System Stimulating Food (offending foods)

Some food contains molecules that stimulate the production of omega-6 derived prostaglandins

(table 1). An omega-6 derived prostaglandins excess is one of triggers of an exaggerated activity

of the immune system  causing allergy and autoimmune diseases.

Isothiocyanate  

broccoli  

horseradish 

producing glycosides 

Brussels sprouts  

mustard 

  

cabbage  

radish 

  

cauliflower 

turnip 

Phenols  

aspartame  

mango 

  

black pepper 

pistachio 

 

cashew 

 

Tannins  

ajowan  

garlic 

 

apple 

ginger 

 

arrowroot 

ginseng 

 

avocado 

grape skins 

 

banana 

guarana 

 

black pepper 

kola nuts 

 

black walnut 

mango 

 

blackberry 

pear 

 

cassava leaves 

persimmon 

 

cherry 

raspberry 

  

cocoa seeds 

red chillies 

  

coffee seeds 

red wine 

  

coriander 

rosemary 

  

cranberry 

tea 

  

cumin 

yucca 

  

eggplant 

  

Thiol allyl  

chives  

leek 

compounds  

garlic  

onion 

Table 1: Chemical compounds that stimulate the production of omega-6 derived prostaglandins, 

together with some nutrients in which they are present. Adapted from V Ruocco. 2001

Several other factors contribute to an exaggerated activity of the immune system. Among them: a scarcity of omega-3 essential fatty acids in the diet, glucose overload, mannose and other carbohydrate deficiency, a congenital or acquired predisposition and repetitive infection. 

Edmund Devroey MD 

Copyright 2003-2004 Edmund Devroey 

1V Ruocco, S Brenner, E Ruocco, Department of Dermatology, 2nd University of Naples, Naples, Italy, 

Department of Dermatology, Tel-Aviv Sourasky Medical Center, and Sackler School of Medicine, Tel-Aviv 

University, Tel-Aviv, Israel. 

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PEANUTS vs. SHRIMP:

It is worth mentioning that an allergic reaction to shrimp is always much less severe than the allergic reaction to peanuts.  The reason for this difference is very simple.  Aside from the allergens it comes with, peanuts contain omega-6 EFAs exclusively, the EFAs that boost immmune reaction, while shrimp are rich in long chain omega-3 EFAs that are, as we have seen, the brakes fo the immune system.
(Doc Ed, The Longevity Institute)

FLAX SEED OIL:
"Of all the foods listed..., flaxseed oil appears to be the only candidate that can really do the job for us of both increasing omega-3 EFAs and decreasing the ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 EFAs.  (as cooking oil...)
(Doc Ed, The Longevity Institute)

TO RESTORE OUR HEALTH:
"the long and the short of it is that the only real way to restore our health is to increase our consumption of food and/or supplements that already contain the omega-3 long chain essential fatty acids EPA and DHA.
(Doc Ed, The Longevity Institute)

Obligatory that you see next!  Please click (separate window):  eKnowtrient-Omega3.  DON'T MISS IT!  the best and simplest summary of all.  And the most vital...

 

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