Posts Tagged willis-ekbom remedy

Restless legs syndrome brain stimulation study supports motor cortex ‘excitability’ as a cause.

motor-cortex-RLS-466x335Experiments with patients suggest brain stimulation may be a viable treatment

Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers say new experiments using magnetic pulse brain stimulation on people with moderate to severe restless legs syndrome (RLS) have added to evidence that the condition is due to excitability and hyperarousal in the part of the brain’s motor cortex responsible for leg movement.

The researchers say their findings, published online in Sleep Medicine on May 31, may help devise safer, more effective ways to treat RLS and the chronic sleep deprivation it causes, using electrical or magnetic pulses to calm or interrupt the hyperarousal. Some 10 percent of adults in the U.S. experience RLS at one time or another, and about 1 in 500 report that the condition is severe and chronic enough to interfere with their quality of life, work productivity or mental health, according to the National Sleep Foundation.

People with severe RLS describe symptoms of the condition as an overwhelming urge to move their legs when they are at rest. They may feel pain, or the sensation of soda bubbles in their veins or worms crawling in their legs, with relief coming only when standing or deliberately moving their legs. Long-term effects include fatigue, anxiety and depression, much of it linked to repeated interruption of sound sleep. Standard treatments, which may carry significant side effects, include medications that behave like the neurotransmitter dopamine, opioids and anti-seizure drugs.

Although many conditions, such as kidney disease and diabetes, have been associated with RLS, the neurological roots of the condition have been subject to much debate.

The new study, the Johns Hopkins researchers say, supports the idea that the underlying main-qimg-9add69791e0644077baa40054dfff984mechanism for RLS rests in the brain’s “move my legs” center and makes even more sense of the relief those with RLS experience when they get up and move them.

“Essentially the brain sends the signal when it’s preparing to move a limb, even when you aren’t planning to move, so your body is ready and amped up,” says Richard Allen, Ph.D., professor of neurology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “The only way to alleviate the feeling is to move.”

In the new study, the researchers identified 32 adults with a moderate to severe RLS diagnosis from patients and asked them to stop their treatments for 12 days. They recruited 31 adult matched controls with no history of RLS or other sleep disorders and healthy sleeping patterns as controls. Participants in both groups were an average age of 58, and 59 percent were women.

For the experiments, the researchers used transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) to apply safe pulses able to selectively stimulate various regions of the brain that control movement of the muscles in the hand or the leg. They then used electrodes attached to the hand or leg to measure muscle responses in that hand or leg during such stimulations in those with RLS and in the control group.

Pairing two pulses as a stimulus can either cause a reaction or suppress/inhibit a reaction in a muscle depending on the timing between the two pulses. The researchers looked at one type of excitatory paired pulses and two types of inhibitory pulses¾short- and long-interval ones.

For each analysis, the researchers took the ratio of the responses. The ratios were greater in the leg for those with RLS, at 0.36 compared with 0.07 for those people without RLS, when looking at the inhibitory long-interval pulses, but not with the short-interval pulses. They said they didn’t see a difference in excitatory pulses in the legs.

brain-optibac-probiotics“This basically means that inhibition is reduced or weakened in people with restless legs syndrome compared to people without the condition,” says Rachel Salas, M.D., associate professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins. “The reduced response means that the region of the brain controlling the legs shows increased cortical excitability in the motor cortex.”

In a separate set of experiments measuring the effect of paired pulses given to the brain in the region that controls the hand, they found no real differences in the ratios of either of the inhibitory pulses¾short- or long-interval ones¾between people with RLS and those without the condition.

But the researchers say they did find that the ratios picked up from the hand muscles using excitatory pulses were lower, at 1.01 compared with controls with a ratio of 1.85.

“The measurements from the hand muscles show that the activity in the brain is reduced in the region that controls the hand in people with restless legs syndrome compared to controls,” says Salas.

Salas says that previous research shows that inhibitory pulses are associated with the action of the neurotransmitter GABA, a brain chemical typically known for tamping down activity in the brain’s neurons. The researchers say that since there is hyperactivity in the leg-controlling portion of the brain, it’s possible that cells and tissues there are lacking enough GABA to prevent hyperactivity.

“Other studies with TMS have been done on people with RLS, but they didn’t look at prelab16_Fig6people with severe forms of the condition or at the long-interval paired pulses in the leg,” says Salas. “We are fortunate to have access to such individuals because the Johns Hopkins Sleep Center attracts people worldwide and many who have exhausted treatment options available elsewhere,” she adds.

Salas notes that medications that act like the neurotransmitter dopamine, such as ropinirole or pramipexole, work in the short term but can exacerbate the condition over time. Opioids are effective, but not ideal due to their risk for dependency. With the results of this new study, the researchers are hoping to use electrical stimulation to suppress the brain’s activity, and planning of these studies is in the works.

Additional authors on the study included Aadi Kalloo, Christopher Earley, Pablo Celnik, Tiana Cruz, Keyana Foster and Gabriela Cantarero of Johns Hopkins.

The study was funded by a National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke grant (R01 NS075184).

Story Source:

Materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medicine.
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/08/180829115526.htm

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How To Overcome Restless Leg Syndrome Naturally (By Healing The Gut) by Jordan Reasoner, SCDLifestyle

scdlifestyle

Sleep is important (we all know this) … but just how important is it?

Poor sleep is associated with increased depression, anxiety, systemic inflammation and decreased immune function.

For those with Restless Leg Syndrome, a lack of sleep is likely a nightly occurrence. It’s also the most dangerous side effect of this frustrating condition.

Worse yet, many suffer from Restless Leg Syndrome and don’t know it.

RLS can often be misdiagnosed as another sleep disorder, depression, poor circulation, arthritis, back problems and even growing pains in children.

If you have extreme fatigue, trouble falling or staying asleep, depression or anxiety, take the time to keep reading.

WHAT IS RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME?choice

Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) is a neurological condition characterized by an uncomfortable feeling in the legs (most commonly). The unpleasant feeling causes an intense urge to move the lower extremity in order to find relief. The sensation is more prominent at night and is often described as “bugs crawling up the legs.”

The side effects of RLS are more concerning than the condition itself, and include:

Insomnia
Extreme daytime fatigue
Increased use of sleeping medications or alcohol to sleep
Increased use of stimulants in order to function
Increased stress (likely due to lack of sleep) and anxiety

Restless Leg Syndrome, also known as Willis-Ekbom Disease or WED, is most common in middle to older-age women, although anyone can experience it. The National Sleep Foundation estimates up to 10% of adults suffer from RLS.

confused-doctorHOW IS RLS DIAGNOSED?

The International Restless Leg Syndrome Study Group requires the following clinical features to be present in order to confirm a diagnosis of RLS:

Strong urge to move the legs due to uncomfortable sensations in the leg(s)
Symptoms become worse during periods of rest or inactivity
Symptoms are partially or totally relieved by movement
Symptoms become worse in the evening or nighttime
Symptoms are not solely accounted for by another condition (i.e leg cramps, positional discomfort)

Perhaps the most important tool, though not always performed, is a test to determine your iron levels. The most accurate way to determine if iron deficiency plays a role in RLS is to measure ferritin. Ferritin is an iron binding protein in which low values (less than 50 ng/ml) indicate low iron storage in the brain (more on iron below).

IS RLS A GENETIC CONDITION?

First degree relatives are 3 to 6 times more likely to suffer from the condition and over 50 percent of affected individuals report having at least one immediate relative with the condition.

Studies suggest when children experience RLS (early onset) it is more likely due to genetics as opposed to onset later in life (after the age of 45). Several gene variations have been studied as possible contributors to RLS, including the following genomic regions: BTBD9, MAP2K5, MEIS1, PTPRD, SKOR1 and TOX3.

Risk allele BTBD9 is associated with RLS and decreased peripheral iron stores – a well-defined environmental factor in which the risk of RLS is about 9 times greater than the general populations.

A change in the BTBD9 gene is present in about 75% of patients who have RLS but also present in about 65% of patients who don’t have RLS…

The difference? Environmental factors.

It’s the environmental triggers in combination with the right genes that trigger Restless Leg Syndrome.

Genetics alone rarely tell the whole story (and that holds true for each of the autoimmune conditions we’ve covered).

TRIGGERS FOR RESTLESS LEG SYNDROMEtriggers-01

Caffeine – Caffeine, most commonly found in coffee, tea, chocolate, and soda may aggravate the symptoms of RLS. For many, caffeine activates excitatory neurotransmitters and has an arousal effect on the central nervous system. Ultimately, it’s effects promotes motor activity and inhibits proper control of fine motor movements, worsening the symptoms of RLS.

Iron Deficiency – The most consistent finding and the strongest environmental risk factor associated with RLS is iron insufficiency. Studies suggest that restless leg syndrome is related to a deficiency of iron in certain parts of the brain despite normal levels in the blood. (See information on testing iron in the diagnosis section.)

Vitamin D Deficiency – One of the most common theories about the cause of RLS is impaired dopamine signaling, and vitamin D is now being researched for its role in this process. Several studies support the hypothesis that a deficiency of Vitamin D correlates with more frequent and more severe symptoms of RLS.

Diet – Vitamin B12 is a critical part of a healthy nervous system, helping to maintain and protect the myelin sheath around the nerves. Researchers are led to believe it could play a role in the onset and treatment of RLS, due to its central role in our nervous system and brain.

A study published in the Journal of Postgraduate Medicine found both iron and vitamin B12 deficiencies to be common and treatable cause of RLS.

The best dietary sources of Vitamin B12 come from beef liver, grass-fed beef and eggs. But in order to absorb Vitamin B12, we must have adequate stomach acid levels and a healthy gut.

Stress – Chronic stress can alter cortisol production and lead to nighttime cortisol release, which researchers have found to be correlated with RLS. Stress levels can also decrease dopamine in the brain – a neurotransmitter necessary for smooth muscle activity and movement. When dopamine is decreased in the brain, it may cause movement problems seen in Parkinson’s disease and RLS.

Pregnancy – The prevalence of RLS during pregnancy is two to three times higher than in the normal population. Hormonal changes and iron status are the two main factors that may contribute to RLS during pregnancy.

Researchers have discovered another piece to the puzzle in the onset of RLS – systemic inflammation.

sysesdefaultSYSTEMIC INFLAMMATION – THE CAUSE OF RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME?

What if the cause of those frustrating leg twitches is something you can’t see or touch… and is rarely a diagnosis you’d receive at the doctor’s office?

We’re talking about systemic inflammation (inflammation relating to the whole body).

54 diseases, syndromes and conditions have been reported to cause and/or exacerbate RLS – all interconnected by inflammation.

The fact that 89% of RLS-associated conditions are associated with inflammation and/or immune changes have led researchers to develop 2 possible theories in the RLS – Inflammation connection:

Systemic inflammation can contribute to an iron deficiency in the brain:

Inflammation can lead to the production of IL-6, an inflammatory cytokine which can stimulate hepcidin production.

Hepcidin is the main hormone involved in the regulation of iron and increased levels can lead to decreased serum iron levels. The result? Decreased availability of iron to the brain.

Systemic inflammation can trigger autoimmune disorders associated with RLS.

RLS is associated with Multiple Sclerosis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Sjögrens syndrome, Scleroderma, Celiac disease and Crohn’s disease – all autoimmune diseases plagued by systemic inflammation.

RLS is present in up to one third of MS cases and is also common in those with Crohn’s disease – a disease associated with iron deficiency, inflammation, and bacterial overgrowth. One study of 272 Crohn’s disease patients found 30% were affected by RLS.

The bottom line is this – we have to address the factors in our life that cause inflammation and the best place to start is a damaged gut.

A LEAKY GUT – THE MISSING LINK IN RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME?leakystory

You might wonder what the gut has to do with that uncomfortable feeling in your legs.

A damaged or leaky gut is a breeding ground for inflammation – the very inflammation that can lead to RLS.

A leaky gut allows conditions like SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth), and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) to wreak havoc on the body and contribute to things like RLS.

One study found 69% of RLS patients had SIBO while 28% also suffered from IBS symptoms (i. e. gas, cramping, bloating, and changes in bowel habits).

SIBO can lead to systemic inflammation and autoimmune changes (which can result in the nerves being attacked in RLS) and SIBO induced inflammation can increase hepcidin (the main hormone responsible for regulating iron).

No matter which way we look at it, inflammation is the common denominator.

So, how do we stop the inflammation that can lead to Restless Leg Syndrome?

Considering the overwhelming amount of research on the topic of systemic inflammation and a leaky gut, your gut is too important to be ignored.

However, a large majority of the medical community has yet to accept the role of the gut in the fight against RLS.

Dopamine-Agonist-300x169THE MEDICAL APPROACH TO TREATING RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME

Dopaminergic agents are often the first line of treatment in RLS. These drugs work to increase dopamine in the brain and include Requip, levodopa, and Neupro to name a few.

Known for their short-term effectiveness, they come with a long-term effects.

Augmentation is the most common side effect of dopaminergic drugs and occurs when the symptoms of RLS become more severe, happen earlier in the day, and spread to other parts of the body (i.e arms).

It’s estimated that over 80% of patients receiving levodopa for RLS develop augmentation.

With augmentation, the brain sees the extra dopamine (via medication) as a signal to decrease its natural production. The result? Patients become increasingly dependent on the drugs for relief.

Compulsive behavior is also a common side effect.

A study including 100 people with RLS (all were treated with dopaminergic agents) revealed well over 50% engaged in some type of compulsive behavior (ie. pathological gambling and compulsive eating habits).

After reading this, you may be wondering if there is a better way to treat RLS than the use of these dangerous medications.

THE LEAKY GUT – AUTOIMMUNE CONNECTIONleaky-gut-connection

If you’ve been keeping up with the latest information in natural health, you already know it’s nearly impossible to ignore a leaky gut as part of the cause and solution to autoimmune conditions like RLS.

Alessio Fasano, M.D. has been on the forefront of recent autoimmune disease research and published a paper titled “Leaky Gut and Autoimmune Diseases.”

His findings present the idea that in order for an autoimmune disease to develop, 3 conditions must all exist together:

1. A genetic predisposition to autoimmunity (i.e. BTBD9 gene in RLS)
2. An exposure to the environmental trigger (i.e. Iron Deficiency)
3. Increased intestinal permeability (a.k.a. Leaky Gut Syndrome)

For those with Restless Leg Syndrome, healing the gut means getting to the root cause so you can stop chasing your symptoms.

Healing a leaky gut is one factor that’s in our control and it can be done step-by-step with the right plan.

HOW TO TURN OFF AUTOIMMUNE DISEASE

Overcoming Restless Leg Syndrome requires a multifaceted approach to heal the gut and decrease inflammation – and that is exactly what we’re here to help you do.

Hippocrates, the famous Greek physician, stated “all disease begins in the gut,” and some 2,000 years later Fasano and many other leading experts agree.

Ancient and current wisdom both suggest that powerful healing must begin in the gut.

jordanJordan Reasoner is a health engineer and author. He was diagnosed with celiac disease in 2007 and almost gave up hope when a gluten-free diet didn’t work. Since then, he transformed his health using the SCD Diet and started SCDLifestyle.com to help others naturally heal stomach problems.

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2008 STUDY: Use of Low-Dose Hydrocortisone Lessen RLS Symptoms

CORT-Restless-Leg-Syndrome-Below is another study that supports the idea of inflammation being at the core of Restless Legs Syndrome.

It’s an older study I recently ran across that dispensed low-dose hydrocortisone to a small study group to see if their RLS symptoms would improve. The results of the study showed that symptoms were significantly lessened.

I’ve included an overview of the study below.

I’ve also included an excerpt from a SECOND study that demonstrates the powerful anti-inflammatory properties of hydrocortisone.

AND PLEASE NOTE, this is NOT an endorsement of hydrocortisone as a solution for RLS. It’s simply more evidence supporting the idea that INFLAMMATION is the PRIMARY cause of RLS. Which means, logically speaking, as you lessen your inflammation, your RLS will lessen.

This lessening of inflammation can be done in a natural way through diet, lifestyle, proper digestion etc. It doesn’t have to be a pharmaceutical anti-inflammatory.

STUDY ONEPuzzled male shrugging wearing lab coat

“Low-dose hydrocortisone in the evening modulates symptom severity in restless legs syndrome.” Hornyak M1, Rupp A, Riemann D, Feige B, Berger M, Voderholzer U. Neurology. 2008 Apr 29;70(18):1620-2. doi: 10.1212/01.wnl.0000310984.45538.89.

BACKGROUND

Circadian symptom manifestation in the evening and night is one of the main characteristics of restless legs syndrome (RLS). Although the inverse temporal course of corticosteroid rhythm and RLS symptom severity is obvious, this relationship has yet to be studied. We investigated the effect of late-evening application of exogenous cortisol (hydrocortisone) on sensory leg discomfort (SLD), one of the main complaints of patients with RLS.

METHODS

Ten untreated patients with idiopathic RLS participated in the study. Change of SLD was rated on a visual analogue scale during the 60 minutes resting period of the so-called Suggested Immobilization Test. Patients received either hydrocortisone 40 mg or placebo (saline) IV in random order in a double-blind crossover design, with 1 week between the experiments.

RESULTS

Severity of SLD was lower during hydrocortisone infusion than during placebo (p = 0.032). Though blind to the experimental condition, 5 of the 10 patients experienced improvement in symptoms during hydrocortisone administration, but no patient felt an amelioration during the placebo condition.

CONCLUSIONS

Our data indicate a probable physiologic relationship between evening and early night hour restless legs syndrome symptom increase and low cortisol level.

confused-doctorSTUDY TWO (excerpt)

“Low-dose hydrocortisone infusion attenuates the systemic inflammatory response syndrome.” The Phospholipase A2 Study Group. Briegel J1, Kellermann W, Forst H, Haller M, Bittl M, Hoffmann GE, Büchler M, Uhl W, Peter K. Clin Investig. 1994 Oct;72(10):782-7.

ABSTRACT

There is increasing evidence that the hypercortisolemia in inflammatory diseases suppresses the elaboration of *proinflammatory cytokines, thus protecting the host from its own defence reactions.

*A proinflammatory cytokine or more simply an inflammatory cytokine is a type of signaling molecule (a cytokine) that is excreted from immune cells like helper T cells (Th) and macrophages, and certain other cell types that promote inflammation from “Wikipedia Proinflammatory cytokine”

For helpful tips on how to lessen your RLS symptoms NATURALLY, please visit http://www.RLCure.com

 

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STUDY: MARIJUANA HELPS TO LESSEN RLS SYMPTOMS

cannabisIf you have followed this blog for awhile, or have visited my RLS website http://www.RLCure.com, you know that at the CORE of everything I present is that INFLAMMATION is the cause of RLS. In other words, eliminate the inflammation in your body and you will eliminate your RLS.

There are an ENDLESS number of ways in which inflammation can be introduced into your system, and there are unlimited ways in which it can be removed.

However, the REMOVAL requires a bit of effort and in most cases, a lot of sacrifice.

The articles below highlight how another anti-inflammatory agent has demonstrated success in lessening the effects of RLS.

Unfortunately for many of you, in this case the healing agent is MARIJUANA.

I want to make VERY clear that this post is not about promoting marijuana and endorsing it as a highly effective method to lessen your RLS symptoms. The idea of the post is to again emphasize that the KEY to your SUCCESS is to move towards an ANTI-INFLAMMATORY LIFESTYLE. That means that dietary, environmental, emotional, digestive changes etc. are required – anything that will move you away from continuing the inflammatory cycle that is at the heart of your RLS.

This is a total NON-ENDORSEMENT of smoking pot as a solution from yours truly, a man that has been in recovery from alcohol and drug addiction for over 30 years.

Smoking a DOOBIE may give you temporary relief, but unless you CHANGE your lifestyle, nothing permanent is going to take place. Your RLS will return.

Below are TWO articles. The FIRST one features a scientific study in which 5 out of 6 subjects had their RLS symptoms disappear thanks to the CHRONIC.

The SECOND article focuses on the tremendous anti-inflammatory properties of cannabis.

ARTICLE ONEMedical-Marijuana-Cures

MARIJUANA CAN STOP RESTLESS LEGS SYNDROME by Trey Reckling, The Fresh Toast

A small report published in the journal Sleep Medicine from the Bordeaux Hospital University Center in France is posing the question whether or not marijuana may help people with Restless Leg Syndrome to sleep better. The answer to that question is a crucial one for the 10-15 percent of people in the U.S. afflicted with the condition.

It’s easy to take sleep for granted when it’s working. When it’s not, it’s enough to drive you mad.

This is no secret for people who suffer from Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS). Even trying to classify the disorder is a challenge because it has crossover effect. It is sometimes classified as a sleep disorder because symptoms such as involuntary muscle twitching and jerking are initiated by inactivity or attempting to sleep. It can also be classified as a movement disorder because people affected sense an almost irresistible urge to move to reduce the uncomfortable sensation. But because the sensations originate in the brain, it could be argued that it is best identified as a neurological sensory disorder.

Regardless, to those who suffer from it, it means lack of sleep for starters. They can have a hard time both falling asleep and staying asleep. That lack of sleep impacts overall health, with negative impact on ability to concentrate, significant increase in daytime sleepiness and significantly lower productivity.

Sleep medicine expert, Dr. Imad Ghorayeb led the study.

mostpopularstrainsSome subjects reported taking seizure medications clonazepam and gabapentin with unsatisfactory results. All subjects reported prior efforts to alleviate their condition with prescription opiates and dopamine agonists for their RLS. They were ready for a new approach because nothing had worked for them or even made situations worse. Two subjects had experienced compulsive shopping and binge eating as a result of using dopamine agonists.

To be fair, there were a meager six subjects in the study. However, 5 of the 6 reported that smoking marijuana relieved their symptoms completely; one reported complete loss of RLS symptoms after using cannabidiol (CBD).

Researchers could not claim to understand why cannabis worked so well in the small group. They do suspect that it is related to the herb’s pain relieving properties and the effect could be enhanced by the sleepiness marijuana can induce.

While the researchers were not willing to fully endorse marijuana for those with restless leg syndrome, they admitted all subjects reported it was the most effective remedy they had tried so far.

Though small scale studies such as this one may not prove anything yet, they do lay important groundwork and interest for more in depth research.

You can read the full article here:
https://thefreshtoast.com/cannabis/marijuana-can-calm-restless-legs-so-you-can-sleep

ARTICLE TWOimages

CANNABIS FOR INFLAMMATION, WHY DOES IS WORK SO WELL? by Dana Smith, cannabis.net

Medical Marijuana For Inflammation and Swelling Works Wonders

Living a lifestyle that prevents inflammation is necessary in preventing chronic illnesses. This means eating a proper diet high in nutrients and inflammation-fighting foods, getting enough rest as well as regular exercise. Once you do have inflammation, it’s important to address it immediately otherwise it can lead to more serious conditions. Most people actually aren’t aware that inflammation affects almost every aspect of your health: arthritis, celiac disease, cancer, asthma, fibromyalgia, heart disease, diabetes, thyroid problems, and ADD just to name a few. Inflammation can be happening right now in your body, but you won’t know it because it takes years for it to be clinically significant, or until it manifests through symptoms of another disease.

restlesslegHow Does Cannabis Treat Inflammation?

Numerous studies have proven that cannabis is effective in treating inflammation as well as addressing the accompanying pain. This is because of the presence of its 2 major cannabinoids, THC and CBD.

Both THC and CBD are effective in reducing inflammation that is linked to several diseases. But another compound found in cannabis called the beta-carophyllene also affects the CB2 receptor. A 2008 study analyzing mice who had swollen paws and were given oral doses of beta-carophyllene showed a 70% decrease in inflammation. The mice without CB2 receptors didn’t see any improvement.

A study published by the US National Library of Medicine found that cannabinoids control the response of the immune system and works in suppressing inflammatory responses. The human endocannabinoid system has 2 receptors: CB1, which is located in the central nervous system, is responsible for psychoactive effects; and CB2, which is found in the tissues and is responsible for inhibiting inflammation.

Cannabis is also useful in keeping c-reactive protein levels down; high levels of this protein can lead to fatal heart disease. A study published in the Drug and Alcohol Dependence Journal revealed that people who smoked cannabis had lower levels of c-reactive protein than those who didn’t smoke. Another study showed that CBD was effective in blocking the progression of rheumatoid arthritis and was also beneficial in providing relief for pain caused by joint swelling. It’s already well known that cannabis is effective in treating chronic pain, which is a side effect of inflammation.

While we now know that THC and CBD work in treating and preventing inflammation, paperthey both work in the body in different ways. Both cannabinoids have demonstrated efficacy in decreasing both the release and production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and also works to decrease the activation of LPS-induced STAT 1 transcription factor, which contributes to some inflammatory processes. However scientists find that CBD is much more potent in addressing inflammation, and for this reason high CBD strains are recommended particularly for those who suffer from extreme inflammation. CBD actually supports the concentration of endogenous cannabinoids which gives the body the ability to self-heal and ward off disease.

You can read the full article here:
https://cannabis.net/blog/medical/cannabis-for-inflammation-why-does-is-work-so-well

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Participants sought for restless legs study

Individuals with restless or unpleasant feelings in their legs at night or at rest, that are relieved by movement are needed. We are studying the possible benefits of yoga versus an educational film program for reducing symptoms of restless legs syndrome. Participants will attend up to two classes per week in Morgantown for 12 weeks. The study also involves two visits to WVU to complete questionnaires. Compensation is $150 upon completion of this research study. IRB approval on file (1505699758)

For additional information, contact:

  • WVU School of Public Health, Department of Epidemiology
  • Caitlin Montgomery, MPH
  • 304.293.2082, cmontgo2@mix.wvu.edu

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“The Common Causes of Restless Legs Syndrome” by Dr. Aaron Ernst

AskDrErnstRestless legs syndrome is a seemingly unique condition and the cause is often difficult to pinpoint.

Few things are more frustrating than lying in bed at night, exhausted, but not being able to fall asleep because of an uncontrollable urge to move your legs. It seems so strange, doesn’t it? This phenomenon, known as restless legs syndrome (RLS), affects between 4% and 29% of adults in Western populations, and is a major contributor to sleep loss.

Pinpointing the cause of RLS has been an active research topic for years, but the condition is still not fully understood. The symptoms have been convincingly linked to impaired dopamine function in the brain, but the cause of this dysfunction is still being explored. Here are my top causes:

1. Systemic Inflammation & Immune Dysregulation (Subluxation)

One review paper published in 2012 investigated health conditions that were reported to Acute pain in a woman hand. Isolation on a white backgroundcause or exacerbate RLS symptoms, and found that 95% of the health conditions that are associated with RLS have an inflammation or immune component. As further evidence, an elevated blood level of C-reactive protein (a marker of systemic inflammation) has been associated with increased RLS severity.

Researchers have proposed three potential mechanisms to explain the association between RLS and inflammatory or autoimmune states: direct autoimmune attack on the nervous system; genetic factors that could predispose an individual to RLS and be triggered by inflammation or autoimmunity; and vitamin D deficiency caused by inflammation, which I’ll talk more about below.

What to do: If your RLS is a symptom of underlying systemic inflammation or immune dysregulation, the goal should be to find and treat the root cause & reduce the stressors to the central nerve system and spine. Often we see the issue target to L5/S1 regions.

2. Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) and IBS

A recent study found that 69% of RLS patients also had SIBO, compared with only 28% of control subjects. They also found that 28% of RLS patients had IBS, compared to only 4% of controls. And according to the 2012 review I mentioned above 32% of the health conditions associated with RLS are also associated with SIBO. As I’ve mentioned many times in the past neurological interference & gut infections are often the culprit—even if you don’t have noticeable symptoms—its worth getting your gut tested.

What to do: If you have RLS and suspect you may have SIBO or a gut issue its best to get tested to find our what is going on in there. Generally speaking, the intestines need to be flushed or cleansed then re-inoculated with healthy living strains of bacteria. Your typical probiotic won’t be able to do that. Overall the best approach is to follow a ketosis diet with bone broth until symptoms subside (and your SIBO tests are normal), and then gradually re-introduce fermented foods and probiotics.

3. Vitamin D Deficiency

One of the most-researched theories about the cause of restless legs syndrome is impaired dopamine signaling, which has led to the conventional treatment of RLS by dopamine agonists (i.e. chemicals that can bind to and activate dopamine receptors). Unfortunately, these treatments can become less effective over time, and can even result in a worsening of symptoms.

vitaminThis is where vitamin D comes into play. The role of vitamin D in dopamine signaling is only beginning to be investigated, but some evidence indicates that vitamin D could play an important role by increasing levels of dopamine and its metabolites in the brain, as well as protecting dopamine-associated neurons from toxins.

RLS has been associated with vitamin D deficiency in several studies, and disease severity has been inversely correlated with vitamin D levels. One study has also found that vitamin D supplementation improved the severity of RLS symptoms.

What to do: If you have RLS, one of the easiest first steps you can take is to get your vitamin D levels tested. A good range to shoot for is typically between 40-60 ng/mL. If you have an autoimmune disease or another chronic health condition, optimal levels are between 60-80 ng/mL. One way to supplement vitamin D is through taking it directly. And of course, you should get regular sun exposure.

We’re still learning more and more about this syndrome, and hopefully we’ll come to some truly concrete answers soon enough. But as is so often the case, watching your nutrition and lifestyle goes a really long way in taking care of these sorts of issues.

This information originally appeared on the “Ask Dr. Ernst” website.
https://askdrernst.com/common-causes-restless-leg-syndrome

Dr. Aaron Ernst completed his undergraduate education in pre-medicine/biology at Messiah University in Grantham, PA. As a first generation holistic practitioner, he began his career with a Doctorate in Chiropractic from Logan College of Chiropractic in Chesterfield, MO.  While in Missouri, Dr. Aaron began helping patients rebuild their health in a Maximized Living Health center, which was the largest wellness clinic in Missouri. His experience has led him to spend countless hours studying and researching to create procedures and protocols to rebuild health naturally. Dr. Aaron has traveled all over North America, Europe and Africa teaching the principles of Maximized Living and educating all generations on gaining victory over disease naturally.

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“A Little-Known Cause of Restless Legs Syndrome” by Chris Kresser, M.S., L.Ac

Chris-Kresser_P3Restless legs syndrome has been associated with numerous conditions involving systemic inflammation and immune dysregulation. (3)

One review paper published in 2012 investigated health conditions that were reported to cause or exacerbate RLS symptoms, and found that 95% of the 38 different health conditions that were strongly associated with RLS have an inflammation or immune component. (4) These conditions include Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, ADHD, Alzheimer’s disease, Celiac disease, Crohn’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, sleep apnea, diabetes, and depression.

As further evidence, an elevated blood level of C-reactive protein (a marker of systemic inflammation) has been associated with increased RLS severity. (5) A small crossover trial found that a hydrocortisone infusion, which reduces systemic inflammation, reduced RLS symptoms. (6)

Researchers have proposed three potential mechanisms to explain the association between RLS and inflammatory or autoimmune states: direct autoimmune attack on the nervous system; genetic factors that could predispose an individual to RLS and be triggered by inflammation or autoimmunity; and iron deficiency caused by inflammation, which I’ll talk more about below.

What to do: If your RLS is a symptom of underlying systemic inflammation or immune inflamation8dysregulation, the goal should be to find and treat the root cause. As I’ve mentioned many times in the past, gut infections are often the culprit—even if you don’t have noticeable digestive symptoms—so get your gut tested.

If you already have a diagnosed inflammatory or immune condition such as those I mentioned above, the best first step you can take is to adopt a “low-inflammatory” diet and lifestyle. This means eating a nutrient-rich, low-toxin diet based on whole foods; getting enough sleep every night; prioritizing stress management; and incorporating regular movement into your day.

REFERENCES
3. “Increased prevalence of restless legs syndrome in patients with Crohn’s disease.” http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25951489
4. “Restless legs syndrome–theoretical roles of inflammatory and immune mechanisms.” http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22258033
5. “Elevated C-reactive protein is associated with severe periodic leg movements of sleep in patients with restless legs syndrome.” http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22750520
6. “Low-dose hydrocortisone in the evening modulates symptom severity in restless legs syndrome.” http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18443313

Chris Kresser, M.S., L.Ac is a globally recognized leader in the fields of ancestral health, Paleo nutrition, and functional and integrative medicine. He is the creator of ChrisKresser.com, one of the top 25 natural health sites in the world, and the author of the New York Times best seller, Your Personal Paleo Code (published in paperback in December 2014 as The Paleo Cure). You can read the full article here: http://chriskresser.com/4-little-known-causes-of-restless-legs-syndrome

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Another Scientific Link Between Restless Legs Syndrome and Inflammation

chronic-illness-46-638Below is an excerpt from an article titled “Inflammation and Pain Management with Magnesium” by Dr. Mark Sircus, Ac., OMD, DM (P), December 8, 2009

“According to the National Sleep Foundation approximately 70 million people in the United States are affected with sleeping disorders. Approximately 12 million Americans have Restless Legs Syndrome, a sleep and movement disorder characterized by unpleasant (tingling, crawling, creeping and/or pulling) feelings in the legs, which cause an urge to move in order to relieve the symptoms.  

‘People with poor quality sleep or sleep deprivation exhibit increased levels of interleukin-6 (IL6), the chemical that causes inflammation throughout the body’ (Redwine et al. 2000).”

The above excerpt is a short but effective overview of the way that Restless Legs Syndrome feeds off itself; ever increasing the stranglehold it has over each individual.

The original RLS-causing inflammation in your body could have been created because of a number of issues. It’s  likely that diet is involved, but there are many other possible contributors such as lifestyle, environment & toxins, alcohol consumption, stress, pregnancy, aging etc.

Once the inflammation inside you reaches a level that causes your legs to start tingling … a whole new (ugly) cycle begins!

The lack of sleep you begin to experience because of your wonky legs AS WELL AS the stress of the increasing frustration BOTH raise the existing inflammation level inside of you.

And, of course, as time goes on, it just gets worse. It’s an ugly, ugly debilitating cycle.

Your sleep gets worse, the inflammation increases. Your stress gets higher, the inflammation increases. Your anger deepens, the inflammation increases.

Yes, all the while, the RLS-causing inflammation inside of you increases, raising your inflammation and RLS to new levels.

THE SOLUTION:

Healing RLS requires a multi-pronged attack. You can’t just take a pill and wish it all away.  Taking a prescribed medication expecting it to rid your RLS is like closing the door to a room that is on fire expecting the fire to die out.

The inflammation inside of you is going to continue to increase and manifest in other ways. (I explain how RLS is actually a warning signal from your body, on my website http://www.rlcure.com).

To rid yourself of RLS you need to:

1. Put a cork in where the inflammation is flowing into your life.

This means, first off, change your diet! Get the sugar, trans & saturated fats, gluten, alcinflammatoryfoodsohol, refined carbohydrates and MSG out of your life, as best you can. Give your body a chance to heal. It doesn’t have to be forever, just give it some breathing room to heal itself.

It also means that you need to learn to calm down.

Meditation, relaxation exercises and yoga have all been clinically proven to lower inflammation levels.

I still believe that no one is beyond help when it comes to RLS and inflammation. Regardless of how hopeless you think your situation is, if you’re willing to make necessary sacrifices and put in the work, you can be healed.

For some helpful tips on natural ways to put out the fire that’s raging inside your body, please visit my website http://www.rlcure.com

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“Restless Legs Syndrome More Prevalent Among Hemodialysis Patients, Correlates With CRP (Inflammation) Levels” by Daniel M. Keller, PhD, Medscape

Woman trying to sleepThis article is based on a lecture from the XLVII European Renal Association-European Dialysis and Transplant Association Congress.

Giulio Romano, MD, professor of nephrology at the University of Udine in Italy, told Medscape Medical News that “the interesting conclusion of our work is that there is a correlation between Restless Legs Syndrome and an increase of inflammatory cytokines and the increase of CRP (inflammation biomarker).”

Dr. Romano noted that several studies have shown that increased inflammation is associated with elevated cardiovascular risk in patients on chronic hemodialysis. Also, he said there is evidence that sleep disorders induce elevated levels of proinflammatory cytokines.

“We think that if patients have some sleep disorders, they evoke inflammation,” he said; “if we treat the sleep disorders, we reduce a cardiovascular risk factor because CRP is a possible cause of increased cardiovascular risk.” The hemodialysis patients without RLS, he noted, had much lower CRP levels. Similarly, the levels of transferrin saturation, another marker of inflammation, were different between patients with and without RLS.

0Nageswara Reddy, MD, assistant professor of nephrology at Manipal University in India, who was not involved with the study, told Medscape Medical News that it makes sense to him that RLS is associated with inflammatory markers. Cardiovascular mortality, which is the main cause of death among hemodialysis patients, is associated with elevated levels of CRP, but it might be associated with other underlying causes as well.

“We have to find out all risk factors. Maybe lack of sleep is another risk factor,” Dr. Reddy hypothesized, and suggested that other inflammatory markers, in addition to CRP, be investigated.

You can read the full article here:
http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/724535

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I’ve Been Banned from RLS.org For Good

ban-youre-banned1All this crazy talk about non medical cures for RLS has got me banned from RLS.org again. This time I suspect for good.

It really is a crime that an organization that gathers people together in a unified search for a solution, would ban someone that offers proof that there are solutions.

They are so tightly bound to the pharmaceutical industry, it’s frightening.

I realize that they’re no different than any other foundation, it’s just that I’m seeing one up close for the first time.

I’m mostly frustrated because they’re misleading thousands of people, saying that their only chance at relief is through medication.

These are people that trust that they are being told the truth, and they’re not.

They’re being horribly misled.

 

 

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Why CAN’T There be a Cure for Restless Legs Syndrome?

41Q8V569JEL._SS500____jpg_336x360_q85THE NOETIC SCIENCES SPONTANEOUS REMISSION PROJECT

Hopefully those of you that are stuck in a deep, seemingly hopeless pit with your RLS, can draw some inspiration from this study.

In 1993, the Institute of Noetic Sciences published “Spontaneous Remission: An Annotated Bibliography.”

In this work, the authors defined spontaneous remission as “the disappearance, complete or incomplete, of a disease or cancer without medical treatment or treatment that is considered inadequate to produce the resulting disappearance of disease symptoms or tumor.”

From their website:
http://www.noetic.org/research/project/spontaneous-remission

“The Remission Project catalogued the world’s medical literature on the subject and the resulting book was the largest database of MEDICALLY REPORTED cases of spontaneous remission in the world, with more than 3,500 references from more than 800 journals in 20 different languages.

An example of “pure remission” would be a patient diagnosed with bone cancer, who refused treatment and who is disease-free more than 10 years later (so we’re not talking about the placebo effect).

Spontaneous remission of cancer has been reported in almost every type of cancer. The largest number of cases are reported in a few types of cancer: neuroblastoma, renal cell carcinoma, melanoma, and leukemias/lymphomas comprise the largest number of cases reported.

Psychological and spiritual factors play a role in remission and survival is evident from the stories of people who have experienced unexplained recoveries from cancer and other diseases, but since the role of mind and the spirit is different for each person, it is difficult to generalize their influence.”

SO, WHAT DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH RESTLESS LEGS SYNDROME?Close up of two feet in a bed

Even though there is “no cure” for cancer, thousands of people over the years have beat the disease.

And there is no set way to this “cure.” There’s no pattern. They all had to do it in a way that WORKED FOR THEM.

Through a combination of a focused determination, perseverance, courage, changes in diet, beliefs & attitudes, physical exercise, meditation, prayer etc. they beat an unbeatable disease.

They overcame their cancer by creating a cure through trial and error, based on their own life experience, using the successes of others as a “guideline.”
 
feeling-hormonal-yl-de“THERE IS NO CURE FOR RESTLESS LEGS SYNDROME!!!!!!

Yes, I’ve heard it a million times.

For several years now I’ve posted on RLS community boards information that I believe would be helpful to those that are suffering.

The most common reaction I get is that there is “NO CURE FOR RLS!” (followed by YOU QUACK, YOU FRAUD, YOU DISGUSTING EVIL PERSON etc.).

In fact the reaction is so strong I’ve been banned for good from RLS.uk. And on top of that, no current member is even allowed to reference me or my website.

I was banned from both RLS.org and RLS.org.au but was allowed back to both. I know I’m currently on thin ice on one of them. I’m on thin ice, and I censor myself so intensely it’s embarrassing, just to avoid getting the boot again.

One nutcase that runs a Yahoo RLS group notified the FDA about me.

All because I claim there is a cure.

I guess if you can invoke that type of reaction you must be doing something right?

It is criminal that these so called “moderators” screen out the information just because they disagree with it – information that the new or casual observer is unable to read and decide for his or herself whether or not they would like to follow up on it.

I understand that in their minds, the moderators are protecting their flock, but the truth is they have serious control issues  that are condemning their members to “life on meds” – continually brainwashing them with the idea that THERE IS NO CURE.

“Stay on your meds and wait with the rest of us for a cure!”

That’s the message.

THE DEFINITION OF INCURABLEsad-women06

Here is the definition of Incurable from Dictionary.com

adjective

1. not curable; that cannot be cured, remedied, or corrected:
an incurable disease.

2. not susceptible to change.

So, by definition, since I had RLS and no longer have it (and many others as well) that means RLS is actually NOT incurable. It is then by definition, curable.

bad-doctorWHY ARE ALL THE SUCCESS STORIES IGNORED?

There are hundreds, probably thousands of people that suffered from RLS, and because of changes in their life, no longer do.

Yet the most common response I get to my claim is not “what did you do to break free, for God’s sake, please tell me!”

The most common response is “you didn’t really have it” or even better “you’re just making this all up!”

It sounds like a really bad parent, doesn’t it?

Of course the claim of these hardliners (and there are many of them) is that their RLS is REALLY REALLY REALLY BAD … something the average sufferer couldn’t even imagine, or endure. 

It’s only the people with mild or pretend RLS that get better.

It’s the heroic ones that still suffer with the “TRUE” RLS.

PEOPLE TAKE IT PERSONALLYpunching

When I post something that hints that there is a cure for RLS, people start freaking at me, interpreting my post as an attack on their character.

They feel that I’m telling them that because they are on meds, they are weak.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

The reason I post the information is so that people who are trapped in a living Hell can “consider” alternatives. I’m only trying to let them know that there are options.

If you escaped from something that was inescapable, would you not try to help others who are still trapped?

It’s human nature.

The whole foundation of self-help groups is based upon this principle.

Drawing up a retirement savings planYOU CAN STAY ON MEDS AND DEVELOP A PLAN OF ACTION

My wife Barb developed a three year multi-stage plan to quit smoking. I had to respect that. That’s what SHE needed to do in order to quit. She developed a plan of action based on HER life experience and HER character and set it in motion.

And it worked. At the end of the process she stopped smoking. She hasn’t had a cigarette in eight years.

However, if she was to push her method on a friend who still smoked, it would be violently rejected.

Her friend has to develop her OWN plan of action.

Her friend, when she decides to quit, can reference what has worked for other people, but for her to succeed, it has to be done HER way, on HER terms.

The cure for RLS is no different.

“I TRIED EVERYTHING AND IT DIDN’T WORK!!!”e4ffe02a476b07a65d62713b69810dac

The most common excuse is “There is no cure because I tried everything and it didn’t work!”

That’s like saying “I TRIED AA AND IT DOESN’T WORK … SO I HAVE NO CHOICE BUT TO CONTINUE DRINKING!”

I know from several people that I’ve talked to that they have dramatically changed their diet. Yet, they still suffer.

It doesn’t mean that there isn’t a solution for them. All it means is that they haven’t found it yet.

Every “cure” is going to be a bit different for each person. Just like with spontaneous remission and my wife’s smoking.

But, there IS a cure that exists for every one of you reading this.

It all comes down to how much effort are you willing to put into finding it? And are you willing to change your actions, beliefs and attitudes?

SO WHO IS THIS “EXPERT” THAT SAYS THERE IS NO CURE?41i6JstccgL._SY300_

Who is this mystery person that originally informed the world that there is no cure for Restless Legs Syndrome?

Maybe it’s Dr. Mark Buchfuhrer, the legendary RLS specialist “Dr. B” that used to be in a Mirapex commercial?

It can’t be any of the doctors that I’ve quoted from articles and studies. They’re all quacks.

Regardless of who the source is, I’ve never been shown one solid piece of evidence showing that RLS is not curable. In fact it’s quite the opposite.

It’s always just a knee-jerk reaction, with no evidence to support the “incurable” claim.

It’s kind of like atheists continually asking people to prove there is a God. Yet, they’ve never offered one grain of evidence proving there isn’t.

MY SMALL BUT GROWING DATABASE OF SUCCESS STORIESsmall-cap

The truth is more and more people are taking the situation into their own hands and are making the necessary changes to become free of there RLS.

You can read about several of them here: http://www.rlcure.com

tag-SpontaneousRemissionsIN CLOSING

Let’s face it, what people really mean when they say there is no cure for RLS, is that there is no DRUG that will take it away.

All the successes that happen to the flaky people are anecdotal. There’s no substance to any of it.

For those of you suffering from RLS, I wish you the very best.

I sincerely hope that you can draw some inspiration from the Spontaneous Remission Project.

You can read it online here:
http://www.noetic.org/library/publication-books/spontaneous-remission-annotated-bibliography

 

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RESTLESS LEGS SUCCESS STORY: Nadine Ausen, Waukesha, Wisconsin

nadinea“I was diagnosed with RLS about sixteen years ago. My symptoms were primarily showing themselves in the evening, making it difficult to sit and watch TV, go to a concert, etc, let alone go to bed and sleep.

I had tried lots of drugstore sleep remedies with little relief before being diagnosed.

After the diagnosis, I started on Requip, which really gave me a lot of symptom relief. Problem was, I was almost unable to stay awake during the evening, long before wanting to go to bed for the night. Also, while the legs were quieted, I found myself still restless and irritable, so after awhile, I was switched to Mirapex. Things were somewhat better for awhile, until augmentation began.

Symptoms began earlier in the day, and required more drug to suppress them, so that I would zonk out when the symptoms let up. I read enough information to realize that this class of drugs would probably have to be abandoned soon, leaving others that would be very sedating, as well. Kind of a depressing outlook, since I don’t really aspire to die in the next few years.

On day my daughter sent me a website http://www.rlcure.com that talked about natural remedies for RLS (this was after yet another conversation with me about how bummed I was about this miserable ailment and wondering what shape I’d be in in the coming years).

As a very experienced RN, and a natural skeptic besides, my first thought was “Oh, RiGHT!”, and after reading a little on the site, I thought, “How can I do all that?” Yet, as a nurse, it did make some sense to me. I already knew about the evidence showing that inflammation plays a role in a lot of medical conditions, so was it really so far-fetched to see it as a factor in RLS? Then there was the question my husband posed…”Wouldn’t you do almost anything to get rid of that?”

I started with cayenne (which I stopped because of frequent stomach upset) and Curcamin which is a combo drug available at some natural or organic stores as well as via Amazon. I am sorry to say that I don’t know for certain what the third one was that I took, but I can tell you that magnesium, calcium, B-12 sublingual, B complex and Quercitin with Bromelain (also found at natural stores or Amazon) were added soon, and help me a lot.

I also drink carrot juice. Of course, everyone has their own scenario of symptoms. There is also a large list of supplements in which to choose, but I have stuck with these.

I also occasionally use L-theanine to help settle me when I am especially bothered. It’s very mild, just calming.

After only a few weeks, I was able to decrease my Mirapex by half.

The dietary changes are harder, but when I follow them, my evenings are better.
Since they are mostly principles I should follow for glucose and weight control as well, I am working on better compliance, and truly believe I may be able to be prescription – free in time. And even if I don’t get that far, I am in a much better situation and feel much less helpless because of the anti-inflammatory approach.

It is a great feeling to believe you can be proactive in dealing with this illness!! I have passed along some of this to others, and highly recommend trying this method to anyone living with this nasty condition….”Wouldn’t you do almost anything to get rid of that?”

About me: I am 66yrs. old, lived all my life in Wisconsin. Have been married for 44 yrs, and worked for 43 yrs as an RN, most of it in hospital nursing, with many years in cardiology and cardiac surgery. We have an adult son and daughter, a grandson who is 5 yrs, old, and will be excited to welcome a granddaughter in October. We also love our pets, traveling, and music. We enjoy a wonderful Christian church. We are becoming more health-conscious as we get older, and really hope to be active “senior citizens”! having my RLS under control will be important for that.

_______________________________________________

For more RLS success stories visit http://www.rlcure.com
If you have a success story, please e-mail me at dwimble@magma.ca

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SEVEN Common Myths About Restless Legs Syndrome

seven-common-myths-about-restless-legs-syndromeMYTH #1: RLS IS GENETIC

TRUTH: The “tendencies” that cause RLS are passed down from parent to child. These tendencies are VERY changeable. They are not hard-coded.

Epigenetics are the switches that turn these tendencies OFF or ON.

Science now knows with absolute certainty that genetics play a much smaller role than previously thought.

Here’s a quote from Newsweek Magazine about the new exciting world of epigenetics.

“Roll over, Mendel. Watson and Crick. They are so your old man’s version of DNA. And that big multibillion-dollar hullabaloo called the Human Genome Project? To some scientists, it’s beginning to look like an expensive genetic floor pad for a much more intricate – and dynamic – tapestry of life that lies on top of it.” – Newsweek Magazine, June 2009

Genetics determine certain traits that are passed on to children, such as hair color, the shape of the nose etc. (as we all learned in school) but beliefs, tendencies and conditions that are passed on are passed through what is called “epigenetics.” These are the switches that determine how our genes are going to act.

For instance, if a parent was extremely negative, those negative switches would be already turned on in the child’s genetic makeup, even before it was born. The child would have to take an action to change the switches to turn the positive genes on and the negative genes off.

In the case of RLS, the bad switches could be on because of diet, environment, and in a lot of cases, stress. This would create inflammation in the parent, and at some point in the child’s life, sometimes very early. These switches would cause inflammation to build until actions were taken and changes were made.

Here’s a quote from a 2012 study:

“Phenocopies in families with essential tremor and restless legs syndrome challenge Mendelian laws. Epigenetics might provide answers.” Zimprich A. Parkinsonism Relat Disord. 2012 Jul;18(6):711-6.

“There is increasing evidence that epigenetic modifications, which refer to changes in gene expression without changes in DNA sequence, can be transmitted to the next generation. Moreover, epigenetic information can be transferred from one allele of a gene to the other allele of the same gene; if then inherited to the next generation, the offspring consequently presents phenotypic properties related to the untransmitted allele.”

Note that if a parent had inflammatory tendencies in the way they lived their life, the inflammation could eventually manifest in the child in a number of ways. It could become RLS as well as hundreds of other inflammatory conditions including depression, ADHD, Parkinson’s etc.

For an extensive look at epigenetics visit:
http://www.rlcure.com/epigenetics-and-restless-legs-syndrome.html

hypnosis-hypnotherapy-fibromyalgia-ibs-cfs-441x269MYTH #2: THERE ARE “TWO” TYPES OF RLS –  PRIMARY AND SECONDARY  

TRUTH: There is only ONE type of RLS. RLS is ALWAYS caused by inflammation, not by another condition.

Having chronic inflammation in your body is like spilling a coffee on your keyboard. Something unpleasant is going to happen, you’re just not sure what.

In the now famous 2012 study by Dr. Leonard Weinstock titled “Restless Legs Syndrome: Theoretical Roles of Inflammatory and Immune Mechanisms” it was shown that 36 of the 41 RLS-associated conditions (88%) have been associated with inflammatory and/or immune changes.

According to the study “The fact that the majority of highly RLS associated conditions are also associated with inflammatory/immune changes suggests the possibility that RLS may be mediated or affected through these mechanisms.”

Parkinson’s, IBS, SIBO, Cancer or any of the other secondary conditions the study refers to do not cause RLS. Inflammation is causing BOTH of the conditions.

Keep in mind that inflammation can manifest as one condition, two conditions or more if it’s not addressed.

You can read about the study at the website below, which also includes some additional data that shows why the results should have shown that 100% of the conditions are associated with inflammation.

http://www.rlcure.com/scientific-study-suggests-inflammation-is-a-primary-cause-of-RLS.html

iron levelsMYTH #3: IRON DEFICIENCY IS A PRIMARY CAUSE OF RLS  

TRUTH: The inflammation causing the RLS also affects iron levels.

The medical text “Hyperkinetic Movement Disorders: Differential Diagnosis and Treatment” by Alberto Albanese and Joseph Jankovic (John Wiley & Sons, 2012) is a scholarly work written for pediatric and adult endocrinologists, orthopaedic surgeons, roentgenologists, workers in rheumatology clinics, geneticists, nutritionists and very specialized osteologists. The book is a collection of data and observations made through a variety of scientific studies.

Chapter 20 of the book focuses on Restless Legs Syndrome. On page 311, Arthur S. Walters M.D. of the Vanderbilt Department of Neurology is quoted.

“Most recently we have noted that RLS patients have an increased prevalence of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and an increased prevalence of Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) compared to controls. This led us to review the 40 or so secondary causes of RLS. Independent of RLS, the vast majority of these secondary causes are associated with either iron deficiency, SIBO or inflammatory/immune abnormalities.

This suggests that inflammation and immune attacks on the peripheral or central nervous system in RLS could be pathogenetic to RLS.

An alternative explanation is that inflammation may lead to iron deficiency which may in turn lead to RLS.”

It is well known in the scientific community that inflammation can affect iron levels. Below are a couple of studies that support this idea:

“Influence of acute inflammation on iron and nutritional status indexes in older inpatients.” MM Chiari et al. J Am Geriatr Soc. 1995 Jul;43(7):767-71.

“Patients with acute inflammation present altered iron status indexes that resemble those observed in the anemia of chronic disease.”

“Interpretation of biochemical tests for iron deficiency: diagnostic difficulties related to limitations of individual tests.” Frank Firkin, Director of Clinical Haematology; and Bryan Rush, Director of Laboratory Haematology, St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne.

“Most cases of iron deficiency can be diagnosed with simple tests. The concentration of serum iron does not fall until the body’s iron stores are exhausted. As the stores are depleted, the concentration of transferrin rises while the concentration of ferritin falls.

Caution is required when assessing patients with inflammatory disease as a low serum iron may not represent iron deficiency. These patients often have reduced concentrations of transferrin.”

MYTH #4: RLS IS CAUSED BY AN IMBALANCE OF DOPAMINE LEVELSPost4_1

TRUTH: The dopamine imbalance and the Restless Legs are BOTH caused by INFLAMMATION.

A dopamine imbalance can be caused by low iron levels or directly from inflammation as is stated in the following studies:

“CSF iron, ferritin and transferrin levels in restless legs syndrome.” Soichi Mizuno et al. Department of Psychiatry, Shimane University School of Medicine, Shimane, Japan, February 2004.

“The results of this MRI study suggest that idiopathic RLS patients may have a dysfunction of dopamine production induced by the iron deficiency in a dopamine-related specific area of the brain, and support the iron-dopamine model of this syndrome.

“Iron deficiency alters expression of dopamine-related genes in the ventral midbrain in mice” L.C. Jellena et al. Neuroscience, Volume 252, 12 November 2013, Pages 13–23

“A clear link exists between iron deficiency (ID) and nigrostriatal dopamine malfunction. This link appears to play an important role in at least restless legs syndrome (RLS) if not several other neurological diseases.”  

“Iron deficiency alters dopamine uptake and response to L-DOPA injection in Sprague–Dawley rats.” Laura E. Bianco1 et al. Journal of Neurochemistry, Volume 106, Issue 1, pages 205–215, July 2008.

“Iron deficiency (ID) disrupts brain dopamine (DA) and norepinephrine (NE) metabolism including functioning of monoamine transporters and receptors.”

“Inflammation induces mitochondrial dysfunction and dopaminergic neurodegeneration in the nigrostriatal system.” RL Hunter et al. Journal of Neurochemistry. 2007 Mar;100(5):1375-86.  

“Evidence suggests that chronic inflammation, mitochondrial dysfunction, and oxidative stress play significant and perhaps synergistic roles in Parkinson’s disease (PD), where the primary pathology is significant loss of the dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra.”

“Systemic Infusion of Naloxone Reduces Degeneration of Rat Substantia Nigral Dopaminergic Neurons Induced by Intranigral Injection of Lipopolysaccharide.” Bin Liu et al. The Journal of Pharmcology and Experimental Therapeutics Vol. 295, No. 1, JPET 295:125-132, (2000).

“A massive degeneration of dopamine-containing neurons in the substantia nigra (SN) in the midbrain is characteristic of Parkinson’s disease. Inflammation in the brain has long been speculated to play a role in the pathogenesis of this neurological disorder.”

Timeline Cover for RLS Awareness Week 2013 v1MYTH #5: RESTLESS LEGS SYNDROME IS A DISEASE

TRUTH: RLS is a BIOMARKER indicating that your body is dangerously INFLAMED and that ACTIONS must be taken to prevent further damage.

RLS is now officially Willis-Ekbom Disease (WED). The name change occurred a few years ago to give it more credibility, but the truth is it’s an uninspiring name and is rarely used by anyone outside of RLS.org.  

The body is an incredibly complex machine and one of its survival mechanisms is its ability to send our warning signals when something is not right underneath the hood.

For example, frequent headaches indicate that something beneath the surface needs to be attended to, whether it be stress, lifestyle, a tumor, inflammation or something else.

In the case of RLS, your body is telling you that you have too much inflammation and that it must be dealt with. If no changes are made, the inflammation will increase and lead to additional conditions.

A nationally-recognized sleep expert has published an editorial describing Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) as a possible biomarker for underlying disease. The editorial appears in the March 5, 2014 issue of Neurology the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology and was authored by Boston Medical Center neurologist Sanford H. Auerbach, MD.

Auerbach suggests that restless leg syndrome is a meaningful biomarker for serious disease, and that RLS screening may become more common as a tool for primary care providers to identify patients at risk.

Find out more here:

http://medicalxpress.com/news/2014-03-restless-legs-syndrome-signify-bigger.html
http://www.rlcure.com/restless-legs-syndrome-willis-ekbom-is-not-a-disease.html

MYTH #6: RLS IS OFTEN CAUSED BY PREGNANCYpregnant-woman-doctor-24049835

TRUTH: The RLS is caused by the HIGHER presence of INFLAMMATION in pregnant women.

As the studies below demonstrate, inflammation levels tend to increase in pregnant women.

“Vaginal cytokines in normal pregnancy.” G. Gilbert et al. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, vol. 189, no. 5, pp. 1433–1438, 2003.

“A significant increase of proinflammatory cytokines (IL-6 and IL-8) is produced in the third trimester. These cytokines act as chemoattractants of polymorphonuclear leukocytes stimulating the expression of prostaglandins in response to delivery preparation.”

“C Reactive Protein levels are elevated in the Third Trimester in Preeclamptic pregnant Women.” Zaima Ali et al. Dept. of Physiology, Lahore Medical and Dental College, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Jinnah Hospital, Lahore.

“Pregnancy is a complex process which leads to a number of systemic changes. During normal pregnancy all these changes are very well regulated. Preeclampsia is a very common disorder of pregnancy and is characterized by hypertension and proteinuria that begins at more than 20 weeks of gestation. Poor placentation with inadequate cytotrophoblast invasion results in widespread maternal endothelial dysfunction. There is increasing evidence that preeclampsia is accompanied by exaggerated maternal systemic inflammatory response to this poor placentation.”

“Prokineticin-1: A Novel Mediator of the Inflammatory Response in Third-Trimester Human Placenta.“ Fiona C. Denison et al. Endocrinology. 2008 July; 149(7): 3470–3477. doi:  10.1210/en.2007-1695

“Prokineticin-1 (PK1) is a recently described protein with a wide range of functions, including tissue-specific angiogenesis, modulation of inflammatory responses, and regulation of hemopoiesis. The aim of this study was to investigate the localization and expression of PK1 and PK receptor-1 (PKR1), their signaling pathways, and the effect of PK1 on expression of the inflammatory mediators cyclooxygenase (COX)-2 and IL-8 in third-trimester placenta.

Our study demonstrates that PK1 and PKR1 are highly expressed in third-trimester placenta with PK1 up-regulating expression of IL-8 and COX-2 potentially via activation of PKR1 and cross-talk with EGFR. The latter finding is supported by double-immunofluorescent immunohistochemistry studies that show that PKR1 colocalizes with IL-8 and COX-2 in placenta. Together, these data suggest that PK1 may be a novel paracrine mediator of the inflammatory response in third-trimester placenta.”

Senior Hispanic woman rubbing handMYTH #7: AGING TENDS TO CAUSE RLS

TRUTH: The RLS is caused by the HIGHER presence of INFLAMMATION in elderly people.

As the studies below demonstrate, inflammation levels tend to be higher in the elderly population.

“Inflammation in aging: cause, effect, or both?” NS Jenny. Discov Med. 2012 Jun;13(73):451-60.

“Aging is a progressive degenerative process tightly integrated with inflammation.”

“Chronic Low-Grade Inflammation in Elderly Persons Is Associated with Altered Tryptophan and Tyrosine Metabolism: Role in Neuropsychiatric Symptoms.” L. Capuron et al. Biol Psychiatry. 2011 Jan 28.

“Our findings show that chronic low-grade inflammation in aging is associated with alterations in enzymatic pathways involved in monoamine metabolism and suggest that these alterations might participate in the pathophysiology of neuropsychiatric symptoms in elderly persons.”

“Age-related alterations in retinal neurovascular and inflammatory transcripts.” CA Van Kirk et al. Mol Vis. 2011;17:1261-74.

“The commonalities in retinal age-related and diabetes-induced molecular alterations provide support for the hypothesis that diabetes and aging engage some common para-inflammatory processes.”

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RESTLESS LEGS SUCCESS STORY: David Wimble, Ottawa, Ontario

googleplus2“I am all too familiar with that horrible feeling of lying in bed, desperately trying to fall asleep BEFORE your legs start twitching. I know the deep despair of lying there and feeling that FIRST little spark. That tiny rustle that signals the inevitable.

That small rustle is the signal that it’s going to be ANOTHER restless night. The twitching is going to get worse until you finally have to get up and walk around (my wife called it travellin’) or sit at your desk and work, until you’re so exhausted that you feel there’s a SLIGHT chance you may be able to fall asleep before the twitching returns again.

During the evening, I could barely SIT beside my wife Barb, let alone HOLD her hand as we would watch TV. Often, my legs would be buzzing so intensely, I would have NO choice but to watch TV standing up.

I used to FLY to a lot of MUSIC conferences. I remember how I would try to mentally prepare myself DAYS before the trip. There’s nothing more intimidating to a RLS sufferer than knowing you’ll have to sit STILL in a plane seat for FIVE HOURS. Sure enough, after a SHORT grace period, the twitching would begin. I can’t tell you how many times I WALKED up and down the airplane aisle pretending that I had to go to the bathroom, just to walk off my wonky legs.

And sadly, many times, during the early hours of the morning, in the exhausting depths of ANOTHER sleepless night, I harbored the extreme fantasies of how peaceful life would be if I had no legs.

I would by lying if I said that thoughts of suicide also didn’t enter into my consciousness.

I can’t remember exactly when it all started? I didn’t even know it had a name until a few years ago. Barb told me one morning that she had run across an article about Restless Legs Syndrome. Up until that time, it was just my “wonky legs” acting up again.

I started researching and found that the only remedies that were being used were horrific drugs created initially for Parkinson’s patients and for those suffering from seizures & epilepsy. I thought about it, but decided that they were not for me.

Through the years I tried all sorts of teas, diets, oils, vitamins and massage. I tried workouts, bicycling and jogging. Nothing helped, or at least NOT for very long.

Several years ago, Barb suggested that I go see a Chiropractor … so I gave it a shot. I was pleasantly surprised that it seattle-chiropractoractually helped a bit. However, after the INITIAL relief, the treatments started LOSING their effectiveness. After about a year, I gave up and stopped going.

A few years later a local Acupuncturist was recommended to me. I went and saw him for a treatment. I was amazed at the relief I gained through his combination of electro-acupuncture followed by a DEEP tissue massage. The massage was excruciating, but I stuck it out because I was DESPERATE to get rid of my twitchy legs. He had hands like a mechanic, and TEARS would shoot out of my eyes as he massaged my legs, but I kept going to see him. It was the MOST relief I’d ever had from my restless legs.

I saw him periodically for a couple of years, and eventually, as was the case with the Chiropractor, the treatments became non effective. I was DEVASTATED. I felt like I was COMPLETELY out of options.

The acupuncturist had told me that my issue was inflammation in the legs. I thought, if this is the cause, maybe there is some sort of herb or supplement that could lessen my inflammation, and therefore lessen my symptoms?

I went to my local health food store and the clerk told me that curcumin was a good natural anti-inflammatory.

I took the curcumin with each meal and within days was feeling better.

Over the next few years I continued researching and trying out different natural anti-inflammatories including Omega 3, Ginger Root, Cayenne, St. John’s Wort, Licorice Root and Skullcap, along with Carrot Juice, Vitamins and Minerals. Slowly but surely the RLS went away.

As I continued educating myself, it became apparent that a healthy diet was crucial. I could take all the anti-inflammatories in the world, but if I was still eating inflammatory foods, then there wouldn’t be a lot of healing going on.

brain-foodSo, I radically changed my diet and continued to take supplements. I rarely eat meat now and my sugar and fat intake is way down. I slso keep away from starches as much as I can including rice, potatoes and pasta. I switched from regular milk to almond milk to pour on my ceral and make my smoothies (I found that I had an intolerance to soy and soy milk).

I recently learned about the importance of probiotics and are now taking them to help my digestive system to function correctly.

I also learned that stress is another big trigger of inflammation. I meditate every day, which helps to lessen the stress.

I have never even remotely felt this good in my entire life. Even pre-RLS.

My advice to those of you still suffering is to ignore those that say there is no cure. Even the doctors. Actually, especially the doctors. They really have no clue about the cause. They may have read an article or pamphlet. or glanced at a study, and that’s truthfully all they know about it.

It really bothers me when someone says I couldn’t have really had RLS because there is no cure. Since I got better, it must have been something else.

My RLS was as bad as anyone that I’ve ever talked to, and today, I feel like a million dollars – like I’ve been freed from a hellish prison. “

If you have a success story, please e-mail me at dwimble@magma.ca

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RESTLESS LEGS SUCCESS STORY: Jonathan Nielsen, California

JonathanNielsen1“I’ve had RLS for many years, although ordinarily it was a minor annoyance. Although, during the past couple of years it got considerably worse, to the point that something had to change. It took a lot of searching to discover the real causes.

In the meantime (while I made the changes, like learning to drink enough pure, clean water and avoiding bad food ingredients), I needed something to help me sleep, while still in process of addressing the root causes of problems the drug companies want to treat with drugs (trust me, you don’t have a deficiency of whatever drug they want to prescribe).

I have found that the following supplements greatly help many people to sleep and to have significant reduction in RLS symptoms. I take the third one listed every night, although I’ve tried the others. They are the only things I’ve taken that were effective for my RLS symptoms besides drinking more water, exercising more, and improving my diet.

Now that I’ve increased my water intake (I don’t drink anything else now), my RLS symptoms are very mild, more like 5% of what they were.

Here are the herbs that help with RLS, stress, anxiety, and insomnia:

(1) Kava kava root extract (often just called “kava”), from a plant that grows on islands in the South Pacific, has been used by Polynesians for thousands of years. It is ignored by mainstream medicine because it’s not nearly as expensive as the prescription drugs, plus it’s not addictive and has no side effects, and they can’t patent it. Instead they try to make kava kava sound unsafe with warnings about liver damage. However, liver damage can only occur if other parts of the plant besides the root are used. Find a trustworthy manufacturer that uses only the root, and there’s no need to worry.

(2) Passion flower extract, from a plant native to North America, was used for centuries by Native Americans, is like kava in that mainstream medicine prefers you use their prescription drugs instead. Passion flower cannot safely be taken at the same time as kava, because both thin the blood some. This also makes both incompatible with some over-the-counter medications like aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen.

9828010_m1(3) Valerian, from Europe and Asia, was used as long ago as ancient Greece and the Roman Empire. Side effects are almost never seen, and the herb is found by many to work much like benzodiazepines but without the addictive qualities and other problems. Once again, mainstream medicine prefers you not know about it. Valerian also cannot be taken at the same time as kava, due to the fact that both are processed by the liver and overtaxation of the liver could result.

Valerian needs to be taken every day and becomes very effective after two to three weeks. The others can be taken at moments when anxiety, RLS, or whatever needs something. Of the three, I find valerian to be the best.

Note that valerian and passion flower can be taken together.

Since natural supplements are not supported by the government or the medical industry (who are really on the same side), it can be difficult to find information about them. Online research should tell you what the supplements are and aren’t compatible with, what dosages are safe, whether the supplement loses its effectiveness over time, and other needed information. All this is readily available with prescription drugs, but information on supplements including clinical trial information is almost nonexistent or may actually be misleading if the drug companies had a hand in it.

Information can be difficult to find, but it’s very important. The medical industry may actually be harming people by refusing to provide information (or accurate information) about natural supplements, and sticking to their position that everyone just needs the expensive patented prescription drugs (while minimizing, hiding, and denying the drugs’ harmfulness).

For the best website I’ve found that assists with determining interactions of drugs, also including information about many supplements, see LetsDrug.com.

FOCUSING ON YOUR OVERALL HEALTH AND LIFESTYLE WILL MAKE THE BIGGEST DIFFERENCE

Exercising. I must re-emphasize the importance of overall health, which is adversely affected by insufficient physical activity, use of harmful substances like tobacco and alcohol and many drugs (prescription and illegal), consuming problematic food ingredients, and inadequate intake of pure, clean water (the last of which, as stated, causes dehydration and many “diseases” that result from dehydration).

relax-blocksOther factors critical to health include getting some sun, getting adequate sleep, and overcoming psychological stress.

To learn about food ingredients which are major culprits in causing major health problems, Learning about these is important because they are very common in foods in nearly every aisle of the grocery store, and they can very much worsen inflammation and many health problems, such as RLS.

Most major food companies generally aim to make you addicted to their products, and to maximize profits at the expense of providing healthy products. The FDA allows nearly every deceptive thing the food companies do, which shows why you need to take personal responsibility and educate yourself, rather than rely on the government to protect you and keep you safe.”

If you have a success story, please e-mail me at dwimble@magma.ca

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