The Leading Cause of Death—Pain

painR1It’s 3 AM and your body aches in relentless agony.  You’ve already had twelve hundred milligrams of ibuprofen and the pain continues.  Hot baths, cold baths, and nothing seems to give you relief.  The emotional pain begins as you realize that you will not be able to work and your family needs your income to survive.  As emotional pain and physical pain dance around your central nervous system, despair becomes your state of being.  The remedy is not prescription pain meds or street drugs.

Recent headlines screamed that the leading cause of death for persons under fifty is pain med abuse.  Having lived with pain since the late 1970s before overcoming it in the 2000s, I would say the leading cause of all death is PAIN.  Is it that opiates are being abused, or is it that there is so much pain that humans will do almost anything to relieve themselves of pain?  The signal that your body needs repair becomes worse than the underlying condition. As the pain continues the natural response of our body is to start shrinking the brain and other neural tissue. As the quality of life fails, emotional turmoil leads us into a state where death seems to be better than life.  Why have we come to this stage of pain?  Pain is the number one ailment in the US with 100 million people in some form of pain.

The cause of pain in the US has been the result of trying to maintain the largest segment of the economy as the medical industry.  To accomplish this feat, it has been necessary to manipulate society in many different areas. 

  • The food supply has been changed so that there are many artificial chemicals that our bodies cannot handle. How food is processed is another abuse to our food supply that the body does not respond well to. This prevents our bodies from achieving the normal healing processes provided by food. When we don’t heal, chronic pain is the result.
  • We have been scared from the sun for over the last fifty years.  Vitamin D will damage your body and UV radiation will give you cancer.  This lie has led to much of our pain.  Not only does UV light provide many beneficial compounds when proper solar exposure is maintained, but also the other side of the visible spectrum or near infrared provides many healing benefits. This includes energy to our mitochondria for cellular healing.
  • Around the beginning of the Twentieth Century, funding for universities that taught patent medicine while not funding natural healing technologies became the way of American medicine.  This led us to find drugs sourced from natural compounds. To understand this, consider the natural anti-inflammatory salicylates that were modified to make aspirin or salicylic acid. Natural compounds were modified to make drugs and our bodies do not respond well to them.  Also, treating chronic pain with drugs instead of vitamins and minerals is just stupid. Congress even went as far as to say that you cannot advertise anything that is intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease without going through the FDA’s drug process.  If you don’t drink water you will die.  According to the FDA, if you advertise that water will prevent death, it is a drug.
  •  Now as congress battles over healthcare, it is not about health, but sustaining the medical sector economy.  There is some ethics involved as failure of the economy could lead to pain.  One medical practice decided to start treating their patients with vitamins and minerals based on the huge amount of medical research.  The result for eight thousand patients was a reduction in office visits from four per patient per year to one visit per patient per year.  It does not take an accounting genius to determine that this was huge reduction in income.  Imagine the decline in the US economy if the entire population was given an adequate intake of vitamins and minerals.  With almost twenty percent of our economy in the medical sector, the US would plunge into recession.  Our congressmen are now having to balance the health of the economy with the health of the population.  What would you do?  Poor policy decision over the last century has put us into a very sad position.  If we modeled our health policies like the rest of the modernized countries, there would be a loss of over five million health insurance jobs and many medical and pharmaceutical jobs.  Congress has consistently decided in the past that the ill health of the population is better that a loss in the economy. The policies of Health and Human Services can be defined in three simple words: Markets before mandates.

In the decades of my chronic pain, I only survived, through the grace of God, by being able to read medical research papers on nutrition for health and apply the findings to my health.  Does everyone have this capability?  We have put our trust in institutions because we are told that America is the greatest country in the world.  It is a great country, but it has some very bad policies for health.  I have a friend that went into medical practice in the 1970s. He constantly complained that he had no solution for the aches and ill health of the aged.  Obviously, he had not been trained in nutritional solutions.  This is the general course of the medical practice today.

With the new development in research for mitochondrial (cellular energy) health, our understanding of how processed carbohydrates lead to poor health has increased significantly.  It seems that our ancient ancestors had a better understanding of how food heals us than our institutions of today.  If you wait until this becomes common practice of using foods for health, you most likely will be dead.  It will take many decades for our system to change. Over the last half century, we have been scared from the sun, told to use fats that were not healthy, substituted sugar for fats, and continued the use of drugs instead of vitamins and minerals.   

To begin our journey of recovery, please consider eliminating flour from grains and all processed sugar that includes high fructose corn syrup.  Find a source from someone that has studied this for decades.  I have found Dr. Mercola to a have a firm grasp of nutrition for health.  His new book, Fat for Fuel, is very enlightening.  You may also want to subscribe to his daily newsletter. Don’t be alarmed as it is very complicated because of the constant barrage of bad information from our institutions. The Whole30 diet plan may be a good place for you to start. Here are the Whole30 rules. Here is what to expect in the first thirty days as you recover from processed foods. There are many other sources for diet like the paleo diet. Pick one and embrace it for your health.  –Pandemic Survivor

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Healing with Infrared Light

SunI have truly been amazed at the healing power of infrared light. It is not that I have some special coherent light device made with the technology of LEDs. It is just a plain ole heat lamp otherwise known as a brooder lamp for raising chicks. I wrote about the use of near infrared for healing back pain. In that article, I gave you links to the science of how it works and how to use the light. I believe the major benefit is adding cellular energy (ATP) to allow the natural healing processes to take place quicker. Here are three brief stories that I have seen firsthand with use infrared.

I had sprained my right wrist very severally.  I was not able to bend my hand passed vertical to my arm.  Normally a sprain like this would take days or weeks to heal.  I exposed the hand and wrist to the infrared light for about twenty minutes.  I held it close enough that I could feel the heat but not close enough to burn. During the exposure, a bright red line developed between my hand and wrist where the tissue had torn.  There was also a red spot that developed further up my wrist that was about an inch in diameter. I assumed this was injured tissue. The next morning I was able to have full use of my hand, but the wrist was still sore. By the second day, there was no indication of injury at all or the use of my hand had returned to normal.

I regularly have coffee in the morning, after spending an hour at the gym, with the folks at McDonalds. A welder sometimes joins us before he goes out for his work day.  He came in one morning with a limp. I asked what was wrong.  He described a knee injury. His doctor told him to stay out of work for two weeks to allow it to heal.  I suggested that he try the light.  ir-light-setuprHe told me that he had lots of this type of heat lamp as sometimes he used it to preheat the metal before welding. Two days later, he came in for coffee and was very excited. He said he was going back to work. He described his knee as no pain and normal function.

A family member had hernia surgery several months ago. He did not rest after the surgery to allow the wound to properly heal. He has a significant amount of scar tissue. If he stays on his feet for any length of time, he starts having severe pain. This happen recently during a visit with him. He had come back from our event for the afternoon and retired to his easy chair with a blanket pulled over this body. I went to the local Ace Hardware store and got a 250-watt heat lamp. I was amazed at the selection of sizes–farm country. The bulb was a GE. GE has caught on to the use of the lamp. It had directions on the side of the box that said normal exposure for personal body use was 20 to 30 minutes.

He exposed the scar tissue for about twenty minutes. A couple of hours later, I noticed he was down in the floor playing with his children. I asked if his pain was better. I was amazed at his description. Now understand, he has had this pain problem for months. He described his pain as a seven before using the heat lamp. At two hours later, he described his pain as a one–amazing.

I really don’t have a clue as to how this works other than what I described in my opening. However, you can bet that I will have an infrared light for my aches, pains, and injuries.  Scaring us from the sun over the last fifty years has been a serious health error.  –Pandemic Survivor

Nutrients and Lifestyle for Pain

Your muscles ache, your joints scream in debilitation, and your head feels like it is about to explode.  What is the path to relief?  It may be a visit to your doctor and drugs.  But this is not the long term solution.  The long term solution is nutrition with an adequate amount and correct type of protein, fats, vitamins, plant enzymes, and minerals, and a change in lifestyle eliminating processed foods, sugar, flour, and toxins. It is only through faith, hope, forgiveness, and courage that this can be achieved. The tangled web of information that we now receive about health, can be very discouraging.

painR1

Pain is a symptom of an injury, chronic disease, acute disease, allergies, and many other maladies.  It can present itself as excruciating and debilitating pain or simply as an itch.  The medical profession uses a scale of one to ten to describe pain.  This is not a very effective method unless the doctor questioning you has a full history of prior pain.  For example, when I had a ruptured appendix, the pain prior to the rupture was an eight on my pain scale.  A bruised coccyx bone from a farm injury was a ten at that time.  Now, my spinal cord being compressed seventy percent in the lumbar region ranks is a ten.  My ten is unlike anything you have ever experienced because it was severe and continuous.  I suffered some form of chronic pain for three decades because of degenerative disc disease.  This now makes the ruptured appendix a four on my pain scale. 

Pain can become an enemy of health as it causes a disruption of your nervous system as well as an effect on mood and hormone production.  This is the reason that many people with chronic severe pain decide to put an end to it all.  This is not the path.  The path to health is through proper nutrition and life style. The problem with our present medical system is that they treat the pain with meds and not necessarily the disease that is the origin of the pain.  This is especially true for chronic disease.  Our food system is poor because foods that are processed are not always healthy for our body.  The most destructive are sugar, flour, and artificial sweeteners as these things totally disrupt your endocrine system. Of course there are always the many toxins that are in our foods and water supply like lead, fluoride, bromide, mercury, glyphosate, pesticides, organics from plastics, and bactericides (chlorine or chloramine) in our public water supply.  The average person consumes pounds of pesticides and of herbicides each year from our food.

The vitamins and minerals needed to reduce and prevent pain are not to be considered as one vitamin or one mineral. They work synergistically in the body to maintain homeostasis. Vitamins and minerals along with the macronutrients are the foundation of health.  Macronutrients include: water, oxygen, protein, carbohydrates, light, and fats. Our medical profession points to drugs for healing instead of nutrients first. If the effort and research that we have done over the last one hundred years had been pointed to our food system and nutrients, we would be an extremely healthy population.  The major error in our research is specialization without considering the whole body first. This specialization of one drug or a multiple of drugs for an illness leads to side effects that are very destructive to health. Recent news has stated that medical misadventure is now the number three cause of death.

When was the last time you went to a doctor about a chronic disease and he asked you about your eating habits?  Oh, he may ask you if you use tobacco or drink heavily, but that is about it. This leaves you on your own to decide if your lifestyle is causing your pain.  The doctor’s solution through government fiat is to recommend pain meds and/or other drugs.  The doctor’s hands are tied and he cannot practice medicine as an art.  The faux science has been egregious in its efforts to maintain the medical economy.  The physician can only practice medicine through drugs, radiation, and surgery as required by our medical insurance and Health and Human Services and the many departments under that umbrella. The good news is we are slowly moving toward holistic and integrative medicine.  There have been many schools that have opened in the last three decades specifically to train doctors in these methods.

It has taken me twenty years and about ten thousand hours of reading to determine what works for me.  Doctor have saved me from many acute experiences with disease and pain.  However, it is only when I started to get enough of the correct nutrients that my body healed. This is now a constant and ongoing process as I age.  What worked for me when I was fifty is now different at sixty-five. I just don’t think that the average person has the capabilities, curiosity, resources, hope, and faith to continue the effort required for health. I have been blessed with all of these.  Also the understanding that much of what you read my just lead you down the wrong path.  Our institutions have contributed to this misadventure by specialization as stated earlier, and ignoring the science that we have if it is not economically acceptable.  This science has been paid for through your tax dollars and ignored by institutions and especially governments.  It can be a hard decision to make if improved health of the population sends us into economic depression that has its own social ills like starvation. Certainly with our many think tanks, we should be able to work our way through this tangle of decisions.  However, if you are the one in pain, it just makes you disturbed that your doctors cannot make you well.

Of course death is the ultimate outcome of your life.  Death should come with only a few months of debilitation, not decades of pain and despair. See post on morbidity: Looking Good, Feeling Better We are meant to live a healthy life.  With our resources in medicine, science, and art, there is no reason that we should not have this luxury. Getting an adequate amount and correct type of proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals is a tangled web of lies that is difficult to overcome.  Don’t despair, there are resources that are available, but you have to have the will, courage, and hope to pursue them on your own. There is relief from pain–be your own researcher and depend only on those that you can trust. I am living, happy proof of a pain free life–Pandemic Survivor
©2016 Mark Pegram

Pain, Pain Meds, and Disability

Americans are dying from pain meds and suffering more pain because of pain meds.  We not just talking about illegal drugs like: heroin, methamphetamines, cocaine, marijuana, etc. We can add to that prescription pain meds, in particular, the opiate meds.  We can also add to that over-the-counter pain meds, NSAIDS.  Why are we using so many pain meds?  It is because of the pain created by the food we eat, the lack of nutrition, and the choices we have made in medicine.  This leads to an extremely high incidence of chronic illness and thus, PAIN.

pain

Around the beginning of the 20th Century, money was funded away from nutritional medicine and toward patent medicine.  This created a population of chronically ill.  To resolve the pain of chronic illness, the population has turned to pain meds to treat symptoms and not the actual disease.  This has created many types of social problems as well as created an economic nightmare for healthcare.  Dr. Mercola Article on how this happened.

A lot of the pain comes from deteriorated cartilage.  But the meds that are used to treat pain, prevent the repair of cartilage.  Baby boomers have taken large amounts of NSAIDS that have caused deterioration of cartilage, and the need for joint and back surgeries.

“In human studies, NSAIDs have been shown to accelerate the radiographic progression of OA of the knee and hip. For those using NSAIDs compared to the patients who do not use them, joint replacements occur earlier and more quickly and frequently. The author notes that massive NSAID use in osteoarthritic patients since their introduction over the past forty years is one of the main causes of the rapid rise in the need for hip and knee replacements, both now and in the future.” – See more at Journal of Prolotherapy.

This of course is to say nothing of the number of deaths, kidney failures, heart failures, bleeding of the stomach and gut, and liver failures from over-the-counter meds.  All caused by taken more and more meds to prevent pain.  We have the greatest medical system in the world when it comes to treating acute illness.  But with chronic pain, we fail miserably.  Add to this the use of prescription meds and illegal meds and the social and economic issues continue.  I feel your pain and experienced pain for three decades before researching to find that it was just nutritional issues.

When it comes to nutrition, it seems that we are left to our own resources to find cures.  Without the use of the internet and the many professionals that reported on the issues, I would most likely be dead.  I am only one out of ten Americans over sixty that is not on a prescription med.  Begin your research into nutritional healing.  The most of it has to do with not getting enough vitamins and minerals.

This issue cannot be resolved simply by eliminating the use of pain meds with more guidelines for doctors.  The only way that we as a society can overcome this issue is for our institutions to reach a higher level of moral standards.  By that, I mean institutions should adopt standards (yes, specifically Health and Human Services) and educate the population on the research that has already been done to relieve chronic illness and pain with nutrition.  It is not our genome that is at fault.  It is the nutritionally and emotionally stimulated epigenome that needs repair.

The Pain of Freddie Gray and Everyone

Was Freddie Gray into street drugs because he was suffering chronic Pain? Pain is a mysterious and yet constant companion when faced with spinal issues. All signals from the brain to the body are through the spinal cord. Failure of the support of bone and cartilage will cause an array of symptoms all over the body that may be arising from the spine.

The spine is difficult to damage unless there is already a pre-existing condition. I have had a lot of experience with spinal issues. Once when my spine was seventy percent compressed, I got a call from the radiologist to not move until he could find my surgeon. He told me that if I even sit wrong that my spine could severe. Another time after an MRI, I was told by my surgeon that I needed immediate surgery because the stenosis (blockage of the nerve canal) in my neck was so bad that all I had to do was bump my head and I would stop breathing. However, when the cartilage and bone are sound, it would take someone extremely skilled in the art of killing to cause death by neck injury. Did Freddie Gray have a pre-existing condition with his spine from a car accident or other yet to be identified issue? There is better than an eighty percent possibility.

I do believe that spinal failure is one of the issues with the use of street drugs in the US. There is over 80% of the population that are deficient in both vitamin D and magnesium. Deficiency in these to vital nutrients causes significant pain because of failure of the spine. Pain does not manifest itself in only physical outcomes. It can affect the emotions significantly as well. After three decades of chronic severe pain, I can tell you there were periods that I would have done almost anything to get out of pain. I suspect that this is also the reason for the abuse of prescription pain meds as well.

When you are deficient in vital nutrients, the cartilage and the bone both soften. Over time the bone will crack and the cartilage will significantly degrade. This causes a series of responses throughout the body that will stump even the best physician. Early in the 20th Century, most back pain was classified as created for the sole purpose of getting pain meds in younger patients. This even happened to me in the 1970s until the doctor had my spine imaged. He then wrote me a letter of apology.

Are we going to blame the failure of our institutions for not properly defining nutrients for health on the police forces on the US? Health and social policy failure being blame on the people on the frontline is totally immoral. – Pandemic Survivor

Emotional Recovery from Pain

Pain stabs you in the emotions as well as the physical body.  When suffering long periods of chronic pain, emotions are on edge at best.  At worst, you are the vilest person in the universe.  Care should be taken when suffering chronic pain to not allow your emotions to overcome you.  The anxiety, anger, and other associated emotions will make the pain worse.

What happens if you don’t collapse the motions and allow them to take over?  I think that Dr. Joe Dispenza, “What the Bleep” fame, describes it best with what he calls a shortened refractory period.  An emotional refractory period is the time it takes to free yourself of an emotion.  If you don’t shorten the refractory period for anger as an example, others may say you are in an angry mood.  If you allow the anger to continue, they will say you have a temperament.  If you continue in anger, it becomes a personality trait and you are off to anger management. 

I had my own issues after several decades of illness and chronic pain.  It took a long time, but I finally got there through prayer.  After I discovered what was happening with allopathic medicine, I became very angry.  How could an engineer figure out what supplements to take without a medical professional or dietician urging a recommended approach that would work?  I was in severe pain from degenerative disc disease and was about to die from central sleep apnea that had been improperly diagnosed as obstructive sleep apnea.  It was so bad that I would find myself holding my breath when fully awake.  Of course, the proper supplements allowed me to recover from all the diseases.  You can just imagine the negative emotions during this period that had to be overcome.

Whatever method you use, prayer or meditation, the feeling of the emotion is unavoidable.  The triggers in the environment will set it off when you least expect it. The key is to collapse the emotion as quickly as possible.  I found that when anger set off, I would first try to move into the thought of love, joy, and peace.  This typically led to forgiveness.  From there, I would allow the anger emotion to further collapse into sadness which I held for as brief a period as possible.  I would then translate the sadness into empathy and passion for all the hurting people.  This in turn would stimulate me to act.  To do more research or to write.  Obviously the writing of this blog was very helpful.  The other side of this process is to hold the positive emotions, love, joy, peace, hope, faith, and optimism, as long as possible.

This does not happen overnight, but can happen very quickly practice.  As you continue to practice, you will find your refractory period continue to shorten.  The key is to make the feeling of a negative emotion just a brief stimulus to turn into a positive emotion and action.  Do not act on negative emotions which you can see from this blog I have done many times.  This was not helpful as who wants to read an angry writer.  If you have to talk about it, do it with a professional, your minister, or a close friend.  Don’t wear out your friend.

You may want to borrow from the emerging field of neuroscience and set a trigger for positive emotions.  It may be a bell, a snap of the fingers, a closing of the eyes while turning the head slowly from side to side or moving your eyes from side to side, slowly rubbing your palms with the tips of your fingers, a word that you say softly to yourself, or any other trigger that is convenient to you.  Obviously, you don’t want to appear ridiculous when around others.  Mark Robert Waldman describes the states of being with the following hierarchy: Reality, (perceptual) instinctual, habitual, (subjective) intentional, creative, (spiritual) self-reflective, transformational.  As you release your trigger, you can go up this ladder very quickly from brief prayer/meditation to awareness or mindfulness and a new reality.

Whatever your emotion, whatever you goal, whatever your illness, seek love, joy, and peace first – Dr. Alex Lloyd.  Pray and meditate that you will be filled with truth and light. The pain is unavoidable, but don’t make yourself and everyone around you miserable.  In Spirit and truth – Pandemic Survivor

Pain Reduction

Pain crawls slowly over us as a wet blanket covered in fine grains of sand or slams us instantly into a knurled lump of screaming anxiety.  Looking for relief leads us down paths that would not be otherwise chosen.  Stumbling in excruciating pain leads to emotional anchors and then into a sad lightless black darkness.  And through this you decide whether you whether to chose misery or embrace an outlook of hope.  Love, joy, and peace seem to have left the station for other destinations, but always remember this is your goal.

I am no stranger to pain having suffered chronic pain for three decades.  And then, vitamin D!  It seems odd, something as simple as the sun gives us so much relief.  I was caught up in a world of misinformation after having a heat stroke from exposure to the sun when I was three.  The heat stroke almost killed me.  The remedy of staying out of the sun would have killed if not for having walked through the door of societal dilemmas. Art called science being driving down the road of motivated institutional immorality left me in a sad darkness.

Vitamin D is hugely significant in helping to deal with all kinds of pain, in particular chronic pain.  When you add to that the remedy of sulfur and magnesium, pain runs from your body like a scalded hound that was caught in the chicken house. Long have mud baths, mineral spring water, garlic, onions, and Epson salt soaks all have in common sulfur and magnesium and analgesic properties.  The vitamin D controls the action of these minerals throughout the body.  From the start of taking vitamin D, I was off of pain meds in about ten months.  That is serious meds as in the form of 400 mg of tramadol(Ultram) along with 1600 mg of gabapentin(Neurontin).  And now, seven years later with no meds there is only love, peace, and joy.

I like what Henry Lahore, Vitamindwiki, has to say about his understanding of vitamin D.

Note about pain and vitamin D from Henry Lahore

I emailed the following to a friend on our shared 66th birthday, March 2012
Ah, I am 66 years old now but feel like I am in my early 50’s (taking 12,000 IU vitamin D daily in the winter) Lots of vitamin D in the past 2 years

  • All aches and pains are gone.
  • My psoriasis on my knee is gone
  • My feet no longer develop cracked the skin
  • Essential tremor in my hands is gone
  • My neck is no longer sore
  • My back is no longer sore
  • My brain is back (able to think and remember much better)
  • The Raynaud’s pain in my fingers is gone
  • It is a great decade   As (not just my day)
  • My wife feels 10 years younger too (she is taking 10,000 IU daily)

Take some time and go to Vitamindwiki’s page on pain.   You will find way too much information there to consume.  I would suggest Vitamin D for chronic pain -2008.pdf about half way down the page: “Vitamin D – A Neglected ‘Analgesic’ for Musculoskeletal Pain”, Hollis, et.al. 

You may not be able to do anything about your pain, but you do get to decide if you want misery as well.  – Pandemic Survivor