Dr. Murphree's Health News
By the author of TREATING AND BEATING Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Treating and Beating Pain
Have you ever wondered why people have pain? Pain is initiated from inflammatory chemicals that are released in response to injury. Pain is a symptom that acts as an alarm to warn us of potential danger. If you've ever placed your hand on a hot stove, you know pain acts as a potent deterrent to not make this mistake twice. Wherever there is pain, there is inflammation. Inflammation is a normal and important, bodily reaction. Inflammation allows the body to attack unwanted invading microorganisms (viruses, bacteria, etc.), remove damaged cells (from injury), eliminate toxins, and is part of the bodies repair process.
How the Inflammatory System Works
Trauma, infection, ischemia (reduced blood flow), toxins, poisons, and normal wear and tear cause damage and destruction to cells. This damage then triggers an orderly inflammatory response by the bodies self regulating mechanisms. When cells become damaged, they release special enzymes. These enzymes digest the parts of the cell that have been damaged. If the damage is minor, the cell can repair itself. If the damage is severe, the entire cell is digested (autolysis) and a new cell is made. If lots of cells (tissue) are damaged, either by trauma (sprained ankle, back joint, etc.) or autolysis (cell death from toxic exposure, radiation, etc.), certain chemicals are released into the surrounding tissues, producing inflammation.
The first group of chemicals, histamine, leukotriens, and pro-inflammatory hormones (prostaglandins), cause the blood vessels to dilate or expand. The dilation of the blood vessels causes the area to become hot, red and swollen. The dilated vessels (capillaries) allow needed nutrients and white blood cells to get to the damaged (swollen) area.
The inflammatory process is quite complex
The white blood cells are charged with digesting and removing damaged cells (phagocytosis). These white blood cells gobble up everything in sight. Foreign invaders or pathogens (viruses, allergens, free radicals, etc) release their own chemicals, many of which are toxic. The healthy tissue surrounding the damaged area releases anti-inflammatory prostaglandins (PG1 and PG3) to combat the inflammatory prostaglandins (PG2). Certain chemicals (proteolytic enzymes) are responsible for telling the white blood cells that their job is done. These chemicals sound the alarm for the white blood cells to stop attacking and digesting cells and tissues.
Proteolytic enzymes are manufactured to squelch the white blood cells from continuing to eat up cellular debris. As the damaged cells and tissues are removed, less of the pro-inflammatory chemicals and more of the anti-inflammatory chemicals are released. Once the inflammation process is finished, the body begins to repair itself. The balance between inflammation, destruction, and repair is an ongoing process. Normally, this process is kept in check. When the process becomes unbalanced chronic inflammation takes over. Inflammation is largely regulated by the prostaglandin hormones mentioned above.
Prostaglandins are a group of regulatory hormones produced in the body from fatty acids (see Treating and Beating Fibromyalgia and CFS chapter 14 Great News About Fats and Essential Fatty Acids). There are several different groups of prostaglandins, but inflammation is largely controlled by Prostaglandin 1 (PG-1), Prostaglandin 2 (PG-2), and Prostaglandin 3 (PG-3).
PG-1 and PG-3 are anti-inflammatory hormones. They help reduce and eliminate inflammation and pain. PG-2 is pro-inflammatory. It causes an increase in inflammation and pain.
The Good Guys (Anti-inflammatory)
Omega - 6 and Omega - 3 Essential Fatty Acids
PG-1 is derived from the essential fatty acid (EFA) dihomogammalinolenic acid (DGLA). We get linoleic acid (omega 6 essential fatty acids) in our diet from most nuts and seeds and their oils; pecans, walnuts, almonds, Brazil nuts, sesame, and sunflower seeds.
Omega - 3
PG-3 is made from the essential fatty acid eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). EPA is found in fish oils (cold water fish) and synthesized from linolenic acid (omega 3). Linolenic acid is found in some nuts and seeds. It is also found in flax seed oil.
The Bad Guys (Pro-inflammatory)
The pro-inflammatory series PG-2 are made from arachidonic acid. Arachidonic acid is derived from the consumption land animal foods (meats, cheese, eggs, etc.). Arachidonic acid stimulates the production of inflammatory chemicals including leukotriens (notorious in causing allergic reactions), thrombboxanes, and prostacylins. Several research articles have demonstrated that the more animal fats a human eats, the more arachidonic acid they have in their blood and cell membranes; and more likely to have inflammation. Conversely, a diet high in fish or supplemented with the EFA's, borage oil, flax seed oil, fish oil, and or evening primrose oil, produces less inflammation and a lower level of inflammatory chemicals. Our inflammatory reactions and their chemicals are therefore largely determined by what foods (fatty acids) we eat. Since most Americans are carrying around at least 10-20 pounds of excess fat, there is no wonder arthritis and other inflammatory diseases are out of control in our country. The average adult is 150 pounds, 30% is fat
The supplementation of EFA's primrose oil and fish oils along with reducing the intake of arachidonic acid foods (land animals) can yield significant results. Some studies have shown that supplementing with fish oils results in a dramatic reduction in a person's leukotriens (one of the chemicals implicated in asthma) by 65%. This correlates with a 75% decrease in their clinical symptoms.
Another study, involving rheumatoid arthritis (often treated with incredibly toxic and life threatening prescription drugs) who took 1.8gm of EPA fish oil and reduced their saturated fats (land animal foods), showed significant improvement over and above placebo. Diseases commonly associated with EFS deficiency include: Cancer, Cardiovascular Disease, Asthma, Arthritis, chronic pain, Eczema, and Multiple Sclerosis. For studies involving arthritis, depression, food allergies, immunity, and others see chapter 14 in my book Treating and Beating Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
I recommend 1-3 grams of fish oil a day and 1-2 grams of evening primrose oil a day. The Essential Therapeutics CFS/Fibro Formula contains one gram. Individuals on blood thinning medications should check with their doctor first.
Essential Fatty Acids
Essential fatty acids are as their name implies, essential for our existence. They can not be manufactured by the body but must be obtained from the foods we eat. Essential fatty acids are made-up of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). PUFAs are divided into two families of essential fatty acids (EFA).
Omega 6 Linoleic Acid
Pure vegetable oils, including sunflower, safflower, and corn oil contain the essential fatty acid (EFA) Omega 6. Some individuals are genetically unable to convert Linoleic acid into its derivative, Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA). This can be overcome by taking primrose or borage oil; both are high in GLA.
Omega 3 Linolenic Acid
Omega 3 oils or Alpha Linolenic Acids (ALA) are found in flax seed, soybean, walnut, and chestnut oils, as well as some dark green leafy vegetables. Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) and DHA (docosahexanoic acid) are Omega 3 derivatives and are found in most cold water fish. These fish include salmon, tuna, and mackerel.
Essential fatty acids make up the outer lining or membranes of each cell. These lipid (fat) membranes determine which nutrients get into and out of the cells. They are a major component of the endoplasmic reticular detoxification membranes, nuclear membranes, and the energy producing mitochondrial membranes. What? Well just know that a deficiency in any one of the essential fatty acids can cause some of the very symptoms associated with FMS/CFS; fatigue, depression, malabsorption, muscle pain, insomnia, poor mental function, and lowered immunity.
Reduce Trans Fatty Acids
Refined oils are those that have undergone deodorization, bleaching, and/ or hydrogenation. These processes remove valuable nutrients including lecithin, beta-carotene, essential fatty acids (EFA), and other antioxidants like vitamin E. Hydrogenation is he process of adding hydrogen atoms to oils for the purpose of creating solid fats like margarine. In order to make a hydrogenated oil, natural oils are heated under pressure for 6-8 hours at 248-410 degrees F. Then they're reacted with hydrogen gas by the use of a metal like copper or nickel (both can cause toxicity).
When oils are processed in this manner, their molecular bonds change, and poisonous trans-fatty acids are created. Trans-fatty acids prevent the good omega 6 and omega 3 essential fatty acids from attaching to their respective membrane receptor sites. This creates an impermeable cellular membrane; toxins can't get out of he cell and nutrients can't get in. Neurotransmitters or brain hormones (serotonin, dopamine, etc.) are also blocked from attaching themselves to the appropriate place on the cell membrane. This can cause depression, fatigue, sleep disorders, anxiety, and increased pain.Trans-fatty acids also increase the blood level of LDL or bad fat while also decreasing the good fat, HDL. Trans-fatty acids have been implicated in increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke. To my disbelief (as reported in USA Today and The Wall Street Journal) Kraft Foods, McDonalds, and other peddlers of trans-fatty acid laden fast foods, have announced their intention to delete these harmful man made fats from their
There are receptor sites on the membranes at which point the happy hormones (neurotransmitters, serotonin and others) attach themselves. Trans-fatty acids block the cellular membrane receptor sites. A blocked or hardened cellular membrane prevents nutrients from entering and exiting the cell. The neurotransmitters (brain chemicals) are then unable to attach themselves to the cells membrane. This can lead to depression, insomnia, anxiety, fatigue, A.D.D., or any disorder that involves the brain hormones (serotonin, epinephrine, dopamine, etc.).
Avoid trans-fatty acids. Read labels and stay away from processed hydrogenated oils.
For more information see chapter 14 in my book, Treating and Beating Fibromyalgia and CFS.
ALL NEW Pain Blocking Formula!
Dr. Murphree's Essential Therapeutics
Inflammatory Support Formula
Tumeric Root Extract - Inhibits enzymes associated with arachidonic acid PG2 inflammatory hormones ("The bad guys").
Rosemary Leaf Extract - Helps block synthesis of leukotriens (a cause of allergic inflammation) and prostaglandin 2. Stimulates phase II liver detoxification.
Holy Basil Leaf Extract - Helps boost natural anti-inflammatory chemicals (PG1 and PG3).
Green Tea Leaf Extract - Is a potent antioxidant and increases the bodies own anti-inflammatory activity.
Ginger Root Extract - reduces inflammation and helps regulate inflammatory systems.
Chinese Goldenthread Root - Helps regulate prostaglandins; reduces activity of the "bad guys" and boosts function of "good guys."
Barberry Root Extract - Helps regulate prostaglandins.
Baikal Skullcap Root Extract - Reduces inflammatory chemicals, including prostaglandin 2.
Protykin Polygonum Cuspidatum Extract - Reduces inflammatory chemicals including prostaglandin 2 and is a potent antioxidant.
The Essential Therapeutics
CFS/Fibro Formula - 60 packs
(300 tablets and 180 capsules)
Improved Formula! Regular $68.00 - Special! $58.00 - You save $10.00!
Recommended dose - 1 pack twice a day with food
Each pack contains
Vitamin A - (33% (3,750 I.U.) from fish liver oil and 67% (7,500 I.U.) as natural carotenes (alpha, beta, cryptoxanthin, zeaxanthin, and lutein) from D. Salina. 11,250 I.U.
Vitamin A - is a potent immune booster. It helps repair "Leaky Gut" (associated with inflammation and allergic reactions).
Vitamin C (as calcium ascorbate and magnesium ascorbate buffered complex). 600mg
Vitamin C - increases superoxide dismutase (SOD) an enzyme that scavenges free radicals and prevents cell damage. Vitamin C is typical decreased in inflammatory diseases, including arthritis and asthma. Vitamin C reduces histamine levels. Histamine causes increased inflammation; asthma, allergic reactions, etc .
Vitamin D3 - 200 I.U. - helps prevent osteoporosis.
Vitamin E ( d-alpha tocopheryl succinate, plus mixed tocopherols d-gamma, delta,-beta) 201 I.U.
Vitamin E - is a major antioxidant. It helps increase the circulation to the legs and reduce the symptoms of restless leg syndrome.
Vitamin K1 - 30mcg.
Thiamine B1 - 50mg - a deficiency can lead to fatigue, mental confusion ("Fibro fog"), depression, nausea, and tingling in the arms and legs.
Riboflavin B2 - 25mg - is involved in producing the neurotransmitters (brain chemicals), serotonin, epinephrine, an dopamine. These are the brain chemicals that regulate sleep, pain, energy, stamina, drive, and ambition.
Niacin B3 - (75% as Niacinamide)- 100mg - is needed to make serotonin. A deficiency can lead to weakness, anxiety, depression, and insomnia.
Vitamin B6 ( Pyridoxine hydrochloride)- 25mg - helps make brain chemicals, serotonin, epinephrine, and dopamine. A deficiency can lead to depression, insomnia, carpal tunnel syndrome (pain or tingling in hands or feet).
Folic Acid - 400mcg - is considered brain food. It is involved in the production of and regulation of cellular energy. A deficiency can cause depression, fatigue, mood swings, headaches, sore tongue, and other unwanted symptoms.
Vitamin B12 (methylcobalamin) - 50mcg - A deficiency can cause mental fatigue, depression, and poor memory.
Biotin - 150mcg - helps maintain healthy looking hair and nails. A deficiency can lead to seborrheic dermatitis (dry scaly skin), hair loss, muscle pain, fatigue, and liver inflammation.
Pantothenic acid B5 - 200mg - "The anti-stress vitamin." A deficiency can cause low adrenal function, fatigue, anxiety, poor immunity, depression, irritability, digestive disorders, muscle cramps, upper respiratory infections, and poor memory.
Calcium (76% as calcium citrate-malate and 245 as calcium ascorbate) - 250mg - A deficiency can cause insomnia, high blood pressure, bone loss, muscle spasm, and digestive disorders.
Iodine (from kelp)- 75mcg
Magnesium (54% as magnesium aspartate-ascorbate complex, 28% magnesium aspartate, and 18% as magnesium amino acid chelate). - 350mg - Magnesium - is a natural muscle relaxer. This mineral is involved in over 300 body processes. It can be very helpful in relieving tight achy muscle pain, leg cramps, restless leg syndrome, and chronic headaches (7). Individuals with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue are notoriously low in magnesium. Blood tests are a poor indicator of magnesium levels and often miss sub clinical deficiencies. One study of fibromyalgia sufferers, found that supplementing with 600mg a day of magnesium and 1200-1400mg of malic acid greatly reduced pain. It usually took weeks and even months before patients noticed the full benefit of supplementing these nutrients (8).
Zinc (as amino acid chelate) - 10mg- is in over 90 different enzymatic pathways.
Selenium (as amino acid chelate) - 100mcg- is an important nutrient for the immune system.
Copper (as amino acid chelate) - 1mg- it plays a vital role in regulating the brain chemicals.
Manganese ( as amino acid chelate) - 5mg- is involved in cellular energy.
Chromium (as chromium polynicotinate) - 100mcg- involved in metabolism of blood sugar.
Molybdenum (as amino acid chelate) - 75mcg- helps reduce symptoms associated with sulfite allergy.
Potassium (as potassium aspartate-citrate) - 148mg-helps regulate nervous system.
Boron (as aspartate-citrate) - 1mg- needed for the absorption of calcium.
Vanadium (as bis-glycnato oxovanadium) - 50mcg - potent blood sugar regulator.
Choline - 75mg - important nutrient for nerve cells and brain function.
Inositol - 25mg - helps regulate nervous system and is natural sedative.
PABA - 25mg - has antiviral properties and protects us from sun damage.
Citrus Bioflavonoids - 50mg - potent antioxidants, help increase circulation.
Malic Acid - 500mg - Malic Acid is found in a variety of foods. It is a vital nutrient needed for the production of cellular energy (Krebs cycle). Malic acid helps boost cellular energy and reduce achy muscles. It removes unwanted waste material from muscle cells including lactic acid, a byproduct of oxygen deficiency. Lactic acid has been implicated as one reason for achy muscles. Lactic acid may accumulate in muscles after periods of anaerobic and aerobic exercise. It may also be involved in the trigger point pains associated with fibromyalgia (9). "Malic acid gave subjective improvement within 48 hours in one studyä" Sherry Rodgers M.D. ,Pain Free in Six Weeks.
Amino Acid Blend - 1,000mg of free form amino acids: help block pain, boost immune function, regulate sleep, energy, brain chemicals, and much more.
L-Alanine, L-Arginine, L-Aspartic acid, L-Cysteine, L-Glutamic acid, L-Glycine, L-Histadine, L-Isoleucine, L-Leucine, L-Lysine, L-Methionine, L-Phenylalanine, L-Proline, L-Serine, L-Threonine, L-Tryptophan, L-Tyrosine, L-Valine.
Essential Fatty Acids - help reduce inflammation, boosts the immune system, regulates brain function, and more.
Marine Lipid Concentrate - 550mg (1,100mg total)
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) - 165mg
Docosahexaenic acid (DHA) - 110mg
Organic Hi-Lignin Flax Seed Oil
Alpha Linolenic acid - 67mg
Linoleic acid - 22mg
Oleic acid - 50mg
Borage Seed Oil - 50mg
Gamma Linoleic acid (GLA) - 10mg
Linoleic Acid - 22mg
Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) (from safflower) - 250mg
Contains no sugar, yeast, wheat, artificial colors, preservatives or additives
"I'd say along with the adrenal supplements, the CFS/FMS Formula has made the biggest difference in how well I feel. If I miss a few days of either supplement I start to feel sluggish and run down. I've taken dozens of different supplements over the last few years, but none have seemed to have helped like the ones Dr. Murphree recommended. I like the convenience of taking a pack in the morning and one in the afternoon. I used to have to carry pills around in my pockets or purse. It was expensive, confusing and hard to take so many pills each day. Usually I lost interest and simply gave up until another "sure cure" supplement came along."
"This is the best all around multivitamin/mineral formula I've ever used. I'm recommending it to all my Fibro and CFS patients."
Dr. Mike Malloy
"The inflammation and CFS/Fibro formula has made a big difference in my pain."
"I can't believe how much better I feel taking 5HTP and the CFS/Fibro formula."