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  The Hidden Cause of Many Inflammatory Disorders

"Boomers," The Latest Victims

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the estimated cases of arthritis alone will be 21.4 million by end of 2005. However, because of the influx of aging baby boomers, those figures are expected to rise to 41.1 million by 2030 in North America alone - not taking into account all other forms of inflammatory disorders, including heart disease.

With global information so readily available, we boomers now have the opportunity to educate ourselves, and others, in natural options for both reversal and prevention of these life-altering and life-threatening disorders. After all, we are just now entering the new mid-life!

Foods that Cripple

Most individuals have never heard the term "nightshades," much less make the connection to a food group that ignites pain and inflammation. Nightshades are a botanical group known as solanaceae - making up over 92 varieties and 2,000 species.

The connection of nightshades and arthritis-type disorders was brought to the forefront largely by the efforts of Dr. Norman F. Childers, former Professor of Horticulture at Rutgers University. Dr. Childers knew first-hand the affects of severe joint pain and stiffness. He discovered that after consuming a meal containing any tomatoes, he experienced severe pain. As his interest in the inflammatory responses to nightshades grew, he observed livestock kneeling in pain from inflamed joints - the livestock had consumed weeds containing a substance called solanine. Solanine is a chemical known as an alkaloid, which can be highly toxic.

Flex.ing our Muscles

An enzyme present in the body called Cholinesterase originates in the brain where its responsible for flexibility of muscle movement. Solanine, present in nightshades, is a powerful inhibitor of cholinesterase. In other words, its presence can interfere with muscle function - the cause of stiffness experienced after consuming nightshades. All people are not sensitive to nightshades in the same degree. Research has proved that when an inflammatory condition exists, consuming nightshades is like adding "fuel to the fire". That said, there is no scientific evidence that for those not afflicted with inflammation that nightshades will cause it.

Experience Matters

Dr. Childers, through his research, proved that 74 - 90% of people who ache and hurt, regardless of their diagnostic "label," have a sensitivity to nightshades.

Potatoes, one of the nightshades, especially those stored improperly or aged, have been known to cause toxic symptoms severe enough to require hospitalization - symptoms range from gastrointestinal and general inflammation, nausea, diarrhea, and dizziness to migraines. It is believed the reason for the toxicity in potatoes is the presence of solanine in and around the green patches and the eyes that have sprouted.

Nightshade Quick Reference

Tomatoes, all varieties (includingTomatillos)

  • Potatoes, all varieties (sweet potatoes and yams are NOT nightshades. Beware of potato starch used in many seasonings and as a thickening agent)
  • Peppers (red, green, yellow, orange, jalapeno, chilli, cayenne, pimento)
  • Paprika
  • Eggplant

    Foods that contain solanine although not directly in the nightshade family:
  • Blueberries & Huckleberries
  • Okra
  • Artichokes

    Other Substances to Avoid:

  • Homeopathic remedies containing Belladonna (known as deadly nightshade)
  • Prescription and over-the-counter medications containing potato starch as a filler (especially prevalent in sleeping and muscle relaxing meds)
  • Edible flowers: petunia, chalice vine, day jasmine, angel and devil's trumpets.
  • Atropine and Scopolamine, used in sleeping pills
  • Topical medications for pain and inflammation containing capsicum (in cayenne pepper)

*Read labels carefully because you could be doing everything else right, and still be sabotaged by one small amount of an ingredient such as paprika as a garnish.

Uncommon Solution for Common Ailments

For the millions of North Americans experiencing some form of joint, tendon, ligament, bone or soft-tissue discomfort, the goal is not only to find a natural solution for short-term relief, but also to make the dietary changes necessary to eliminate and reverse the condition, specifically for: Tendonitis
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Fibromyalgia (ME, Fibromyositis)
Arthritis (Osteo and Rheumatoid)
Heart Disease
Digestive Disorders (leaky gut, irritable bowel, Crohn's, etc.)
Any condition whose symptoms include persistent aches, tenderness, swelling, pain, numbness, tingling, muscle weakness and inflammation.

Defeat Pain and Inflammation, Naturally

I've consulted with hundreds of clients with gastrointestinal and inflammatory disorders who resist eliminating nightshades, even for an initial trial period of 90 days, the time necessary to experience the benefit. Those that do, however, report the amazing improvement in symptoms of fibromyalgia/me, chronic fatigue, headaches, arthritis, gout, carpal tunnel, irritable bowel and scleroderma, to name a few - why not try it, after all, the only thing you have to lose is your discomfort, isn't that what matters?

Dr Gloria Gilbčre, ND, DA Hom, PhD.

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