Is It Fatigue or Is It Mitochondrial Dysfunction?

Is It Fatigue or Is It Mitochondrial Dysfunction?

Is It Fatigue or Is It Mitochondrial Dysfunction?

Because of my son’s failure to thrive, our pediatrician sent us to see Vicki Kobliner, a holistic nutritionist, who’s also on the board of Epidemic Answers with me. Given that Crane Man has constant fatigue and stomach pain, poor growth, mild sensory issues and developmental delays, Vicki suggested having preliminary tests for mitochondrial dysfunction done. Checking the levels of carnitine, lactic acid, pyruvic acid, alinine and lysine are easy preliminary screening tests that can be done from a standard blood-test lab like Quest Diagnostics. Having symptoms across 3 or more organ systems is suggestive of mitochondrial dysfunction. Crane Man’s developmental delay is a symptom of brain dysfunction; His GI problems and former acid reflux are symptoms of muscular dysfunction; His possible hypoglycemia is a symptom of liver dysfunction; His failure to thrive, fatigue and former unexplained vomiting are symptoms of system dysfunction. At this point, you’re probably scratching your head, thinking “Mitochondria, I vaguely remember something about that from high…

Healing Eczema with Food

Healing Eczema with Food

Healing Eczema with Food

My sons have had eczema their whole lives.  It has ranged from cradle cap (did you know that was a form of eczema?) to itchy bumps in the creases of the knees and elbows to full-blown bloody red rashes on the arms and legs. Pediatricians, as usual (sorry!), were useless in treating eczema.  Their standard advice was to “put a little cortisone cream on it”.  I did try that a few times at first with my older son, but I quickly grew worried about the effects of it on his already-poor immune system.  Cortisone cream is a steroid, and steroids suppress the immune system.  Not only that, but I learned that suppressing eczema with cortisone cream can lead to asthma. Most times, we just put up with the itchiness, but this winter, my older son’s eczema was the worst I had ever seen.  There was an itchy, red rash all over his thighs and horrible itchy bumps all around his…

What Is Gut Dysbiosis?

What Is Gut Dysbiosis?

What Is Gut Dysbiosis?

Gut dysbiosis — this topic is the motherlode.  It’s one of the two core (in my opinion) reasons for the explosion of chronic childhood illnesses we see today. Gut Dysbiosis:  A Common Link Among the Epidemic of Children’s Chronic Illnesses First, let’s discuss the numbers behind this epidemic:  How many kids did you know when you were growing up that had autism, ADHD, acid reflux, allergies, asthma, developmental delays and/or mental health issues? I knew of only ONE child with any one of these in the whole time I went to school from elementary school to high school.  Now that I am a mom, I can tell you that it’s the rare child who does NOT have any chronic illnesses.  The statistics for today’s kids are staggering: 1 in 6 African-American children has asthma; 1 of every 8 children has it 1 in 5 children has allergic eczema 2-3 out of every 5 children have hay fever 1 in 3…

The New Normal:  1 in 68 Children with Autism

The New Normal: 1 in 68 Children with Autism

The New Normal:  1 in 68 Children with Autism

by Ashley Morgan, mother of 2 chronically ill children (Leo and Sydney) It’s official according to the CDC and other government bodies. The rate of autism has increased no matter what.  The numbers are now 1 in 68. Will these new numbers be the tipping point that will cause change in the way we take care of our children?  Will it change how we live? Over reporting? Even Michael Kogan, lead author of the HRSA study states there are unaccounted for percentages in the rise. I didn’t get a call, did you? Doubtful Leo’s former pediatricians didn’t account for him. And how about those that say we must “proceed with caution?”  What?  Cautiously treat children that desperately need services?  When a very small percentage get the level of services they need already? Do we treat the statistics or do we treat what we see before us? I was sitting at dinner the other night with new friends after Leo’s baseball…

Alternative Treatment for Allergies

Alternative Treatment for Allergies

Alternative Treatment for Allergies

by Ayelet Connell-Giammatteo, P.T., I.M.T.,C. Recently, I visited with my son’s new preschool teacher.  One of the first questions that she asked me was if my son had any allergies.  I was pleasantly surprised. Honestly, my biggest fear in having my son begin school was that his food sensitivities would not be accommodated. When I mentioned that he had gluten sensitivity and peanut sensitivity, she exclaimed, “That’s great! We have plenty of gluten-free snacks in the classroom and the school is a peanut-free zone!” In fact, she mentioned that the only snacks that they provide to the children in the classroom are those that can be eaten by everyone. Now, I know that not every classroom is as allergy-friendly as this one.  But it leads us to consider a future of more possibilities. Allergies are becoming so commonplace today.  It is a rare family that does not have a child and/or parent with allergies. There are many signs and symptoms…

Immune Dysregulation and Gut Dysbiosis

Immune Dysregulation and Gut Dysbiosis

Immune Dysregulation and Gut Dysbiosis

Central Biological Dysfunctions in Chronic Childhood Illnesses To understand what causes chronic illness in our children, we must first understand that the symptoms that appear in our children (wheezing, constipation, behavior issues, etc.) are the result of much more complex underlying biological dysfunctions in their bodies. The wheezing that accompanies asthma, for instance, does not simply mean that something is wrong with the lungs, rather, it is a symptom that tells us that other systems and functions in the body are breaking down. Two very important systems in the body, the immune system and the gastrointestinal system, appear to be most affected in children showing signs of chronic illness. When the immune system and the gastrointestinal system are not functioning properly, you begin to see signs and symptoms of illness – all sorts of illness (everything from depression to eczema). Very few people would think that the symptoms of asthma have anything to do with the gastrointestinal system or that…