Back Pain and the Beginning of Hope

There it was late one spring afternoon and the pain was unbearable.  It was as if I had been locked in an iron maiden torture device with the common intent of that device.  Pain banged like ping bong balls from one end of my spine to the other with sharp daggers of new response as one pain followed another.  With so many pain meds in my system that I was having difficulty remaining conscious I was still on the verge of shock from the pain.

Mixed with that was the emotional pain as my friends and family had deserted me as no one could stand to be around a person with that much constant pain. It reminded me of Psalm 38 NIV from Biblegateway.com where David was crying out to God about a similar situation.

6 I am bowed down and brought very low;
all day long I go about mourning.

7 My back is filled with searing pain;
there is no health in my body.

8 I am feeble and utterly crushed;
I groan in anguish of heart.

9 All my longings lie open before you, O Lord;
my sighing is not hidden from you.

10 My heart pounds, my strength fails me;
even the light has gone from my eyes.

11 My friends and companions avoid me because of my wounds;
my neighbors stay far away.

It was 2004 and as I know now the spring is the worst time of year because my vitamin D level was the lowest.  It had been a year since my last failed back surgery.  In this moment I asked that something be given to me so that I could overcome the pain of that afternoon.  I remembered the similarity of the numbers that I had researched for a friend where central air conditioning in homes in the US seemed to follow the obesity rates.  I focused my mind on trying to determine a correlation.  Going to the department of energy website and to the CDC I found these numbers.

Data:

  • Year 1980 1984 1987 1990 1993 1997 2001
  • % Obesity 15.1 18.2 20.6 23.3 25.2 28.4 31.5
  • % Central Air 27 30 34 39 44 47 55

When comparing the two sets of data with least squares it looks like this:

There it was better than a 99% correlation.  That calmed my mind with distraction and was fascinating at the same time.  It must be that fat people got hot and put in more air conditioning accordingly.  Of course at that time I could find nothing on the web about vitamin D deficiency and obesity and that ‘ah hah’ moment came later when reading a story on rickets and inner city kids.  It took me until November of 2004 to come to the understanding that the lack of exposure to sun was the issue.   See My Story.

I know that pain is harmful and destructive in ways that are not describable.  When I suggest that my pain was far above the pain of a ruptured appendix, no one seems to understand because even child birth pains cannot describe the constant intrusion of the neural system being in exceptional upset.  The ruptured appendix when I was nineteen now comes in at a modest 4 on my pain scale of 0 – 10.  My spine being 70% compressed by a central rupture at L4-L5 with sleep disturbance from sleep apnea and my friends deserting me is a 10.  Just writing this story for you brings up memories that are almost unbearable, but I know that this is important for your understanding and I will suffer this grief for you.

For you who may be reading this story because of pain and you have stumbled here in the hope of finding some relief, know that it is possible for your body to heal and for you to feel great again.  Please read here on what I did to overcome this pain without more surgery.  Back Pain

I know the destructiveness of pain and without God showing me where to find relief I would most likely be dead at this point.  My mission now is to get the understanding of vitamin D into the mainstream understanding of health.  Or at least to help encourage the ones that have given up hope.

Your mission if you choose to accept it is to spend enough time in the sun for health and to get your serum vitamin D level to one of health.  – Pandemic Survivor

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Sunday Morning Musings

This week there on the ever present drugs ads (there were no people in bathtubs this time) was the story that bone density improvement drugs could reduce breast cancer.  How outrages is this claim when vitamin D and calcium is significantly more effective in treating bone density issues than any drug on the market.  To try to pick up a new market for some drug that should not even be used is just criminal.  Billions of dollars in fines is just not sending the drug industry an adequate message.

This is to not even consider that Dr. Cedric Garland has shown that vitamin D could reduce breast cancer by a whopping 75%.  “Breast Cancer Going Rogue”

The first thing that should happen is that all commercials for prescription meds should be removed from modern media.  Of course I am sure that the US is the only country in the world that has this made readily available because the drug companies are buying their way into government policy by campaign contributions and other ways that we do not even want to think about.

If we cannot get the hands of our policy and lawmakers out of the pockets of the drug and medical insurance companies long enough to stop drug commercials, then it should be law that if a nutritional change gives the same or more significant impact that the drug cannot be advertized.  This would mean there would be no bone density drugs on the market.  Vitamin D and calcium have been shown to give an improvement in bone density of 3 to 28 percent in one year where bone density drugs are about 2-3 percent per year if you take your calcium and vitamin D with them.  This is not to mention the impact on breast cancer of vitamin D.

On another front that I was reminded of in my last post is the comment that all medicine and test that have been done in the last fifty years or more in the US have been done on a vitamin D deficient population.  Considering the metabolic effect of vitamin D on the body’s processes, this is a very scary issue.  I would suspect that the majority of drugs that we use to treat chronic disease could be eliminated or reduced significantly.  How would this affect the medical economy?  It is obviously to a very large extent considering former HHS Secretary Levitt’s number-four principle of ‘markets before mandates’.  We would not want to do anything that would kill the cash cow even at the deaths of millions of Americans.  Last on his list of nine principles was to ‘value life’.  Don’t make me take my hand out of that pocket or I will kill you!

And on the swine flew it is bye-bye birdie.  According to the CDC Update the percentage of medical visits for influenza like illness has dropped to about 2-1/2 percent or about normal for this time of year down from over 8 percent.  This is just like the experience of the southern hemisphere countries that are currently just entering their summer.  So are we just trying to sell vaccine?  Let’s hope that we continue to mirror these southern hemisphere countries and there is no second spike.

I am pleased to report another survivor story of a lady that started to take 5000 IU of vitamin D3 per day almost two years ago.  She told me that all of her aches and pains are gone.  She is about 70.  This seems to be a regular comment on pain from people that become replete in vitamin D. You just get well. –Pandemic Survivor

Why Suffer Vitamin D Deficiency?

During a recent interview Dr. John Cannell of the Vitamin D Council kept making the same point over and over.  Here is the approximately one hour audio interview on vitamin D in health and disease.  You may also find the link to this interview on the home page of the Vitamin D Council.

The point:  Why suffer vitamin D deficiency in particular if you have any form of disease when it is perfectly safe to have the serum level of a sunny country?

Now the serum level for vitamin D in a sunny country is 54 ng/ml to 90 ng/ml per Grant and Holick.  To achieve this level takes a different amount of sun exposure and supplementation for everyone as each person’s rate of use of vitamin D is different.  There is no need to wait for some study to come out and say with certainty that vitamin D will treat or prevent this disease or that disease when it is safe at an extremely beneficial level.

Scientist will take many years to make treatment studies show the benefits of vitamin D for a multiple of reasons.  No one wants to fund the studies when there is no profit to be made and government funding for treatment studies can be extremely slow.  However, through anecdotal experiences that are communicated this paradigm shift can move very quickly.

Do not die vitamin D deficient! – Pandemic Survivor

Thinking about Cholesterol

Let’s just stop for a while and do some critical thinking about cholesterol.  I am not bound by having a medical degree or much education in the biological sciences.   This frees me from boundaries that are typically imposed when trying to come up with a new theory or hypothesis.  There are just about always these preconceived notions about how a process works that stops researchers from considering other pathways or avenues or even superhighways though they are clearly marked.  Of course this is really good for the keepers of the cash cow.  With that out of the way this makes it possible to allow my imagination to run free without restraint.

Okay so researchers, maybe you should pay attention to what I am about to say because some day it may make you a super star if you pursue my line of thinking.  However, if you work for one of the companies that make statin drugs and start talking about what I am proposing then you better put your things in a box and start looking for a new job.

So what is cholesterol?  It has the word sterol in it so that most likely makes it a fat.  So what do we know about fats?  They are necessary for life because I remember the story about the arctic explorers that had this canned food that was primarily carbohydrates and protein and they started to get sick and bloat.  It was later discovered that you have to have fat to survive.  It has also been discovered that we do not need carbohydrates to survive but this battle still rages on.  We do know that low fat foods that have the fats replaced with sugars or other carbohydrates just make us fatter.   I have proved this over and over by the amount of weight that I gain when I eat low fat foods.  And on top of that, the low fat foods just make me want to eat more.

Now there have been all of these stories about how cholesterol in the blood causes your arteries to clog up with plaque and this stops the blood flow.  When your blood does not flow for more than about five minutes you die and this is not good to a long life.  I have read studies that say that too much cholesterol causes this plaque problem and heart disease.  I have read studies that say there is no correlation between cholesterol and heart disease in more recent literature.  It was suggested that since a high amount of cholesterol would cause heart disease and that since cholesterol is fat that we eat too much fat and this causes us to have heart disease.  This seems so counter intuitive to the understanding about the explorers that did not get enough fat.

We can just put all of that aside and say that cholesterol is a marker and not necessarily a cause and effect for heart disease.  Now what does being a marker mean?  Well it means that a certain thing is an indication that something will happen.  It is like the speed indicator in your car.  If it says that you are going 70 mph that the car is going very fast and all the physical things that you can expect to happen at this speed will happen.  The speed indicator is not the cause of the car moving at this speed.  The indicator only says that the car is going at this speed.

Now, when I had severe back pain and my vertebral disc were failing and I had sleep apnea, I had very high cholesterol readings.  I had one test that indicated that my cholesterol was over 240.  The test also said that my fasting triglycerides were 680 or extremely high.  I also had problems with my heart because I was having pre-ventricular contractions and one time even a sudden fast heart rate.  My heart rate went over 200 bpm and stayed there for over 15 minutes.  I was in so much pain from the pressure on my spinal cord that I just thought that maybe this was it and I would just die and get rid of the pain.  However, my heart slowed down and I was just fine except for the severe continuous ever hurting downright destroying evil pain – pain – pain.

Then I started taking vitamin D3.  My spine healed.  My sleep apnea went away because the nerves for the lungs and throat were free to do what they were supposed to do.  My heart started working just fine.  My energy returned.  My brain healed.  My mind cleared. And guess what else happened.  That’s right on my last blood test, my cholesterol was 175 and my fasting triglycerides were 72.  Now how could this be because since I have been out of pain I eat the worst diet ever.  I am still overweight (BMI 130) even though recently my metabolism seems to be speeding up and I have lost 10 lbs in the last month. I eat now because I can because there is no pain when my gut gets big unlike before when my spine was shot.  So why would eating cheeseburgers and french fries and milk shakes cause my lipid profile to improve?

Thinking about arterial plaque, I have recently read that this plaque is a very small percentage of the gooey stuff that holds it together from cholesterol.  It is mostly calcium dross.  I like the word dross because that is what forms when you get too much oxygen over molten metal and so this is what happens in the arteries and not the veins where the oxygen is low.  Too much oxygen in the arteries causes the calcium in the blood to form dross.  This makes about as much sense as what we have been told about how the fat causes our arteries to plug.  If it was just fat, then the veins would clog as well.

So following the logic of the ‘eat low fat’ people, we should just stop breathing as this would not allow oxygen into the arteries and cause dross to plug them.  Now you guys that majored in the biological sciences still with me or have I sucked all of the air from your systems?  I know this is way out, but what fun!!!!!!!!!

When reading about how our body makes vitamin D, I discovered that the ultraviolent B radiation on cholesterol in the skin causes it to turn into vitamin D.  This vitamin D along with some isomers and other products like metabolites that it forms makes up our vitamin D physiology.  Now not being hampered by a biological religious cult, I would just think that as our bodies get enough vitamin D to where systems get satisfied that we stop making cholesterol.  When we do not go out into the sun and our vitamin D level gets low, our liver and skin spits out lots of cholesterol and our body starts screaming at us, ‘GO INTO THE SUN’.  We go into the sun and if there is enough UVB then our body makes D3.  We are happy as our pineal gland starts spitting out the commands for all of these happiness squads of hormones that can now act because we have enough vitamin D.

Process of vitamin D being made from cholesterol, University of California Riverside.

This also makes sense from understanding that the plaque in our arteries is a calcium plaque and the primary system for controlling calcium absorption is vitamin D.  If we do not have enough vitamin D then calcium serum regulation falls to the parathyroid hormones like a failsafe system.  We survive and do not thrive.

And while I am thinking about it, I do not believe there is a single case of secondary hyperparathyroidism when the serum 25(OH)D level is above 40 ng/ml in the medical literature.  At least that is what a bunch of guys from Spain have said in 2003.  You would think that knowing how PTH and 25(OH)D work together that we would increase the level of 25(OH)D before we started chopping out peoples parathyroids.  This happened to a friend of mined and he simply increased his 25(OH)D, his serum calcium normalized and he did have to get his parathyroids chopped.

So then, cholesterol is just a marker for low vitamin D levels in the body which means that we need to take action to get the level of vitamin D up so that over 2000 genes can turn off when they are supposed to be off and on when they are suppose to be on.

Changing the cholesterol level to try to prevent heart disease then would be like making the speed indicator on the car read 35 mph when we are really going 70.  We are just looking for an accident to happen because we do not know that we are going so fast because of the artificial indication.  I suspect this is what happens when we take statin drugs which I understand are just bad mimics of the vitamin D feedback system that tells us to stop making cholesterol.  This is really bad because when we do go into the sun we do not have adequate amounts of cholesterol to make vitamin D.  Okay, biological geeks, did you get it?  This is the reason for all the confounded data in your studies because your theories just – well- truly suck!

I say to you, the manufacturers of statin drugs, that I do not believe that you are so bad at logic and biological science that you could get this so wrong.  I think that you had dollars signs in your eyes because you could not figure out a way to profit from healthy people replete in vitamin D.  So it is obvious that you love money more than people even though it is the people, your customers, that is providing you this money.

I suspect that there is enough data out there from other studies that an energetic researcher could crunch around to show that when peoples serum 25(OH)D levels are less than 32 ng/ml that they have a problem with high cholesterol.  Get the levels up to above 50 ng/ml for a couple of months and I would suspect that you would see a significant drop in cholesterol.  It happened to me and others that I know.  Are our bodies just freaks of nature?

It seems that doctors that have tried this on patients with heart disease have had great success.  Why don’t you go visit with Dr. William Davis at the Heart Scan Blog and see for yourself.

Even better –GO INTO THE SUN!!!!!!!!!!!   – Pandemic Survivor

Nutrients for Back Pain

As you know from My Story, I ‘grew’ out of back pain by taking nutrients that allowed the vertebral disc to heal.  Now modern medicine says that this is not possible, but let us explore these two brief stories from people that I know that helped me get to the understanding of the nutrients that I took.

First it was a friend that was somewhat of an athlete.  After a surgery on his knee to removed damaged cartilage, he spent enormous amounts of time in the sun with his shirt off.  Against his doctors advice he continued to run.  It is important to keep up exercise for cartilage health as this is the only way that fluids move in and out of the cartilage to provide nutrients.  Cartilage is not feed directly by the blood system.  After a year he went back to the doctor and had his knee imaged as a follow up to the surgery.  The cartilage had grown back.

Second, I knew a lady that had back pain.  She said that after the summer in her garden that her back pain had gone and that she had grown an inch in height.  Again, significant height variation that is more than the normal from hydration is an indication of the health of vertebral disc.

The only thing that was in common with these two healings was sunshine and exercise.  The sunshine provided the vitamin D and the exercise allowed nutrient flow to the cartilage.

Nutrients that I took:

Vitamin C 1000 mg/d

Multivitamin

Magnesium as glycinate 800 mg/d

Vitamin D3 – enough to keep my serum 25(OH)D3 above 50 ng/ml for me at 203 lbs this was about 10,000 IU/d  in the winter and in the summer I only took 5000 IU/d

Vitamin A – from fish liver oil 5000 IU/d

Zinc – 25 mg/d

Boron – 3 mg/d

Calcium – 500 mg

Sulfur – MSM 1000mg/d and glucosamine sulfate 1500 mg/d

I could not really walk so I had purchased an inverter about three years prior.  I am not promoting the Hang-Up brand but this is the one that I used and it worked very well.  I would not really hang upside down but would rock 45 degrees back and then forward and this would work my spine like an accordion to pump fluids in and out.  I did this twice each day for 10 to 15 minutes.

Now from looking at these vitamins it is hard to imagine that is all that I did.  Let me tell you when you are in pain and the back is screaming at you the vitamin D does wonders.  Of course I was under the care of doctor during this time and he told me not to take the vitamin D3 in such large amounts that it would make my organs turn to ‘stone’.  He checked my serum calcium and my 25(OH)D and was satisfied that I was not doing anything harmful to myself.

There was not anything on the net about improving back pain with vitamin D at that time.  However, now Dr. Gerry Schwalfenberg, University of Alberta, has published case studies on using Vitamin D. Improvement of Chronic Back Pain or Failed Back Surgery with Vitamin D Repletion: A Case Series Gerry Schwalfenberg, MD From the Department of Family Medicine, University of Alberta, Canada

In his case studies, he does not use as much vitamin D as I did.  I do think that you should try to maintain your serum 25(OH)D level above 50 ng/ml as I stated above.

The pain got much better for about a 4 month period.  It then started to hurt up and down my back, but the places where the bulges existed got much better.  What was going on with my back as the disc healed was that the nerve roots were trying to find new homes as the disc increased in height.  I could exercise the part of my spine that was hurting and it would get better the next day.  After the first three months I was able to go to the gym.  I had a very kind trainer that would help me exercise without putting any compression on my spine. Within 10 months I was able to do 125 lb dead lifts and the pain in my back was gone.  I had grown back to my original height of 6 ft after six months and at the end of 10 months I was two inches taller than I had ever been.  I am sure because I was kept out of the sun as a child because of my heat stroke that my DNA had never fully expressed itself.

I think that it is very important for cellular differentiation that you get both Vitamin A and Vitamin D.  I got the largest growth spurt when I was taking both.  Also please note that I was not using beta-carotene but vitamin A from fish liver oil.  There has been much comment about not taking this preformed vitamin A.  We always ate liver every other week when I was growing up and I never had any problems.  Liver about the size of your hand has 100,000 IU of vitamin A.  I say eat as the endogenous people did – like the wolf where the internal organs are consumed first.  If you like liver then you have it made.

Again, do this only in the care of a doctor in particular if you have injuries in your cervical disc.  I had stenosis so bad at C3-C4 and since this is where the nerve for the lung originates the surgeon was really concerned I would just stop breathing.  I had severe sleep apnea (central) from this but after the pain was gone the doctor would not operate.  The sleep apnea took almost two years to resolve but it finally got there.  I have no more poping or snapping in my neck at all and can move it in any direction at will.

Sounds simple, it is simple.  I still do not understand why no doctor ever asked to take my vitamin D level when DDD is so similar to rickets.  I am truly sadden by the number of people that are still out there hurting when the solution is so simple.  There is hope for your pain so be of good cheer.  I know that it hurts and my prayers are for you.

Go nekkid into the sun!           – Pandemic Survivor

The Tragedy of Deficiency Disease

I was at the gym this morning on the treadmill when a woman that was a friend of my friend that was on the treadmill next to me came in.  She had a cane and I discovered that she had just had a knee implant.  It seems that she had a minor injury some 15 years ago and her knee continued to get worse until there was apparently no cartilage left.

I did not ask her age, but she appeared to be about 40 years old.  She had dark skin which is a real problem for vitamin D deficiency.  From the material that I have read it appears that about 80 percent of the population with light colored skin are deficient and 99 percent of people with dark skin are deficient.  Here is an article today from the Visit Bulgaria website.  It is a worldwide problem.

Of course the problem with dark skin is that the melanin content of the skin slows the rate of production of vitamin D3.  This means that to get the same amount of vitamin D a dark skin person may need to stay in the sun 2 to 10 longer than a person with light skin depending on skin pigmentation amount.

If this lady had been treated with vitamin D when she first had the injury and educated in how much she needed to heal her knee, she would not have to had the replacement.  It is difficult to imagine the amount of pain and the pain that she continues to have.

This first came to my attention with my neighbor that was an athlete and played baseball for a local college.  He would have made it in the pros but it seems that he had a problem in hitting the curve ball.  He had to have knee surgery when he was in his twenties.  His doctor told him that he should not run.  He loved the sun and spent as much time as he could in the sun with his shirt off.  He ignored his doctor and continued to run.  Later he had his knee imaged and discovered that the cartilage had regenerated.  Sun and exercise seem to be the magic formula for him as the sun gave him vitamin D and the exercise allowed the flow of fluids to his knee.

Think about the list of diseases that you have read from a prior post and we see this ever day with friends and acquaintances that we meet.  Pain from diseases are debilitating and life destroying.  It truly grieves my heart.

To think that there truly is a relative simple solution of keeping the vitamin D level up is tragic.

GO INTO THE SUN AND SUPPLEMENT!!!!!!!!!!!  – Pandemic Survivor

Vitamin D, Disease, and Research

In 2006, I went to PubMed, the government clearing house for medical publications, and just entered vitamin D in the search engine and limited the search to that year.  There were over 2,100 papers.  I just did this for 2008 and there were over 2,300 papers.  If you limit it to the last ten years it comes up with over 17,000 papers.  The published recent work on vitamin D is voluminous.

The Vitamin D Council has provided a wonderful list of diseases that have been associated with vitamin D deficiency on their research page.  You go there, pick the disease and it sends you to PubMed right to the abstract of the article.  If you do not have a subscription to the particular journal you can purchase the article from the publisher online.

In reading this list, it makes me wonder why there are so many diseases and so much research and yet the medical profession is not treating with vitamin D.  There are so many diseases that are a result of or have a component related to D deficiency, you would think the news organizations would be all over this, but I digress.

If you are a doctor or a researcher and you are trying to just get a feel for the research that is out there then Dr. John Cannell has organized the research by disease.  It is a starting place as there are still many diseases that he has not listed.  For example, I had degenerative disc disease that is really a form of osteoarthritis.  This disease caused severe chronic pain, muscle wasting in my legs, central sleep apnea, memory loss from brain shrinkage with the pain, and other symptoms from oxygen deprivation from the sleep apnea.  If we took sleep apnea we find that it is not in the list because no one has done any research on it and vitamin D even though it has an obesity and stenosis vector which both can be tied directly to vitamin D deficiency.  There is a lot of work that is left to be done and a lot of miss-education of doctors, researchers, and the public in general that needs to be corrected.

Another disease that is not listed is psoriasis and I know that it can be treated with vitamin D according to Dr. Michael Holick of Boston University.  Dr. John Cannell has done a great job and we are grateful for his work, but the tentacles of vitamin D reach far and long in the course of human health and disease.

If you do not find the disease that you have interest with, then just go to PubMed and search on the disease itself and components of vitamin D.  Also I am sure that if you can identify research and that has not been listed then the Vitamin D Council would be interested.  Send that along to them.

Let’s just make a copy of the list without comment to see how long it is:

Vitamin D Council Research Links by Disease

Addison’s Disease
Allergic Hypersensitivity
Alzheimer’s Disease
Ankylosing Spondylitis
Asthma
Autism
Autoimmune Illness
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
Bladder Cancer
Brain Cancer
Breast Cancer
Cancer
Celiac Disease
Cerebral Palsy
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
Chronic Pain
Cognitive Function
Colon and Rectal Cancer
Cystic Fibrosis
Depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder
Diabetes
Endometrial Cancer
Epilepsy
Ethnicity and Vitamin D
Eye Cancer
GastrointestinalFunction
Gaucher’s and Fabry’s Disease
Vitamin D and Genetics
Graves’ Disease
Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis
Heart Disease
HIV and AIDS
Hypertension
Inflammatory Bowel Disease
Influenza
Innate and Adaptive Immunity
Liver Cancer
Liver Function
Lung Cancer
Lymphoid Cancer
Melanoma
Mental Illness
Mineral Metabolism
Multiple Sclerosis
Muscular Weakness and Falls
Obesity
Osteoarthritis
Osteomalacia
Osteopenia
Ovarian Cancer
Pancreatic Cancer
Parathyroid Function
Parkinson’s Disease
Pediatrics
Post menopause
Pregnancy and Lactation
Premenstrual Syndrome
Prostate Cancer
Renal Function
Rickets
Sarcoidosis
Sickle Cell Disease
Skin Cancer
Stroke
Toxicity
Toxin and Radiation Exposure
Tuberculosis
Turner’s Syndrome
Vitamin D Deficiency

Other items of interest for Vitamin D with links to the research:
Best Science
Commentaries and Editorials
Genetics
Requirements
Reviews
Treatment
UV Exposure
Veterinary and Animal Studies
Worst Studies

Vitamin D Council Research Links by Disease

Well, I hope that you find this useful and that you do not think that just because your disease of interest is not in this list that it does not have a vitamin D vector.  This seccosteroid is the most important steroid of the human body – Vitamin D3.

There is a lot of pain and death listed above.  Shine the light on this research!!!  – Pandemic Survivor