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Immunity is basically the ability of our bodies to fight off potential danger. Immune health is now more important than ever!
Listen to Martin breaking down the most important information about how to manage your immune system, and fight off viral (and other) infections all year round, not just in these dangerous times!
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Podcast 392: How to manage your immune system for health
How to manage your immune system for health, and how to navigate viral and other infections in these dangerous times? First of all, my name is Martin Pytela. I am the CEO of Life Enthusiast. I’m also a health coach and I’m a CMTA, that stands for Certified Metabolic Typing Advisor. Certified Metabolic Typing Advisor is a branch of functional medicine approach to understanding how the genetics and the human health intersect. We learn about how our bodies are preselected genetically to certain diets, but we are not going to talk about that today. My past education: I was trained as a clinical hypnotherapist, and in my previous incarnation I have a degree in computer science and business administration. I spent 20 years working in the hi-tech industry as a trainer, tech support and sales, and I lectured people in various ways.
How I got into health has much to do with my early life. At 25 years of age, I visited a dentist, I ended up with 12 mercury amalgam fillings. Mercury turns out to be one of the most toxic things you can put into your body. And very soon after I had these 12 fillings installed, I started falling apart. I ended up with back pain, plantar fasciitis, and carpal tunnel syndrome, and I developed allergies to pollens, it all really was starting out as the breakdown of the microbiome in the gut. The mercury is very toxic, and it’s very toxic to the immune system, and it’s toxic to all the systems in the body. And in my attempt to fix myself, I first went to the professionals, I went to the medical mainstream, and then to the alternative, the chiropractors, the naturopaths, the osteopaths, and then further afield, all manner of therapies. Most of them focused on treating the symptoms.
They are competent people, but they just are like this. To a man with a hammer, most things look like a nail. They were following the symptoms, they were not asking, but what the cause of this is. So eventually after about 10 years of trying, I had this moment when I realized that I was going to have to help myself or else spend the rest of my life in misery, declining into a disability. In the process of that, I started reading and studying and analyzing, and thank God I was trained as an analyst so I could figure out the hows and the whys of things. And sure enough, eventually, it dawned on me that it was the mercury. So since about the year 1995, I’ve been working as a health coach, since 2001 we have been online with Life Enthusiasts. I have now counseled probably thousands of people.
So let’s talk about this. The immune system, its role, and its purpose, and regulation challenges. How does the immune system regulate itself and how does it all work? Let’s talk about the why, why the immune system? The ingress pathways, ingress as in stuff gets in. First of all, the immune system is protecting us from unwanted incoming traffic. So first of all, of course, the obvious, the cuts, the punctures, and the wounds. And certainly, you can see the system in action. If for example, you get a cut that gets infected by some microbes, all of a sudden you will see the white blood cells congregating. As they die, they look like pus. That’s the dead bodies of the warriors that have sacrificed themselves in the fights with the external influences.
But we have openings, right? We interact with the world. If we shut ourselves off, we become a marble statue. Life exists in a dynamic balance, not in a static balance. Static balance means no interaction, dynamic balance means exchange. We cannot exist in the world without bringing things in and letting things out. So sure enough, your eyes, they are wet and they are allowing the dust and whatever else come in. So if somebody spits at you, then whatever is in that droplet, including the microbes, it’s getting into your body through in your eyes and you’ll get it. That’s why we are so strongly encouraged to not put hands to our face, sticking fingers in your eyes, because whatever is on your finger now gets into the eye. The other ingress pathway is breathing. So the lining of the nose, sinuses, the bronchi, and the lungs.
And then of course food, eating. That will be the cells in your mouth, and the throat, and the esophagus, stomach and so on. And then the sexual organs. Basically all of the tissues that are mucosal barriers. You can see that they are different from the skin. The skin is more resilient, more resistant, less likely to let things through. And yet, of course, we all know if we put a patch on, like a nicotine patch or a scopolamine patch, the medication gets inside, it just takes longer. When we put something under our tongue, it’s a lot quicker, but it still gets into the circulation. Likewise, whatever we end up with rectally, we can add suppositories, they get absorbed very quickly.
So what are we worried about as far as the immune system? Whatever is arriving. A viral, bacterial, protozoan, those will be single-cell organisms like amoebas and the likes, and fungus, of course, spores of things. They can really mess things up. And of course, we should be very much worried about all the other toxic burden that gets into us in the air, food, and water. All kinds of dirt, herbicides, pesticides, industrial toxic compounds, hydrocarbons, metals, and the likes. It’s interesting how detrimental the industrial environment can be for us, especially in the cities where there’s a lot of traffic. Automobiles put out the exhaust and the brake pad dust is loaded with metals and the industrial enterprises that send their stuff in the air and in the water. It’s a fairly dangerous place to be.
I would like to explain the immune system in an analogy. I call it the Nightclub model. In a nightclub, for people to be having a reasonable amount of fun without hurting one another, it needs to be a functioning system. First of all, we have a doorman, a person at the door that tries to eliminate the obvious troublemakers, so we are letting in only those which we hope to be compatible with the spirit on the inside. So keep out the trouble. And then on the inside, we have bouncers and bartenders. A bartender is dispensing the fun stuff, but also is watching the crowd. The bartender is supposed to be only putting out so much alcohol to not get the guests in trouble, but not so little that they would be feeling miserable about things. And bouncers walk around and they are watching for trouble, and if somebody is getting just a little too rowdy, or just needs to be not there, the bouncers need to step in and take that unwanted guest out.
But they need to do that efficiently without causing pain to others, and without breaking up the whole place. But sometimes a fight breaks out, as we have all seen in movies, and sometimes in real life, things can get out of hand. So the components of the immune system that are involved on the inside of the club so to speak, are listed here on the screen. White blood cells, antibodies, complementary functions, the lymphatic system, and the major organs, spleen, bone marrow, and thymus. We can discuss the details, but what I’ve found instead, if you would like to get yourself educated about all of this, there is a fantastic resource online. It’s on the Khan Academy, you can click HERE to check it out.
The immune system has two branches, innate and adaptive. The adaptive is the one that is learning from things that are coming in. So it’s kind of naked and unprepared when we are born, but as we go forward in life, it gets more and more educated. So next time you encounter something, it’s going to be able to deal with it better. The innate is built-in, we get that from our mothers, and we are born with a whole bunch of memories already built-in. So going back to the link to the Khan Academy, go to that link, and you can just study up on the immune system, its components, and the technical details. What’s interesting here is that in the inmate system, there are these basophils, eosinophils, and neutrophils, you will see that if you have a blood test, these numbers are shown on your blood test. And if you have too little or too much of any one of these components, it will indicate that things are either in balance or out of balance, and your doctor would be able to perhaps direct you to what needs to be done.
The interesting part about the immune system is that the memory can be transferred, so we can actually move some of the cells from one person to another, and the immunity can be transferred that way. The issue is either the underactive or the overactive system. There are some specific illnesses that relate to the underactive system, genetic predispositions, certain drugs that can cause these problems. For example, AIDS means Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, which is an immune deficiency, that’s something that can happen. On my end, we end up dealing with the overactive immune system more often. The overactive system, that’s the bouncers in the bar being just a little too intense, or the guests being too rowdy, and we end up with allergies, eczema, and other skin problems, and sinusitis, which is an inflammation in the sinuses and postnasal drip, hives, skin eruptions, you know what hives look like, or rosacea, that’s a steady red glow on the skin.
And then all the autoimmune disorders, they are part of this overactive, misdirected immune system, illnesses that include multiple sclerosis, diabetes, arthritis, thyroiditis, lupus, vasculitis… there are about 200 different defined illnesses. The mainstream medical system likes to name things after geography. They don’t really concern themselves much with what’s causing things, but where they show up. So they’ll have a name for an illness that’s got to do with your eyes and your mouth or your thyroid or your heart instead of by what caused it. What is interesting is the regulatory system, the Th cells, the T-helper cells, there are these two main sides. One side can be dominant over the other, and one is siding with the acquired system and the other one siding with the learned system.
And as you can see on the screen, in one group, the Th1 dominant conditions that include the type one diabetes, multiple sclerosis, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Crohn’s disease, psoriasis, Sjogren’s, celiac, rheumatoid arthritis, that would be from one side of the system is overactive. Whereas in the other one, things like eczema, lupus, asthma, allergies, and ulcerative colitis, that would be the other group, the Th2 dominant. We can actually do quite a bit to modify and control things because certain supplements and certain types of foods are stimulating either one side or the other. If the Th1 is dominant, we need to eat fewer foods that are stimulating the Th1 production, and more foods that are stimulating Th2. So as you can see here on the slide, the Th1 stimulants will include the echinacea, licorice, ginseng, and grape seed extract.
Whereas the Th2 stimulants will include things like pine bark, lycopene, curcumin, and quercetin. So you can try to help balance the system, you can define for yourself and figure out for yourself what is better for your specific situation. Not all things are right for all people, and things can change in time. You may end up with a situation that calls for the Th2 foods to be supplemented, and in a few weeks or months, things can switch to the other side. You can come back to this and learn more about it, and you can research more, and of course, you can call us to get more grounded in what’s going on for you specifically.
So how do we get into the sick state? How do we get into the broken and poorly functioning state? Wouldn’t you know it, the worst, the biggest contributor is stress. It’s not what happens to us out there, but how we react to it. People are often blaming stress on the outside world, but really it’s the inside, it’s not what happens, but it’s what you do, how you deal with it. You can choose to react with horror and panic, or you can choose to be more rational about it. Meditation is a really important tool for centering the mind, quieting the mind and finding a better way of dealing with stress. And of course sleep. Sleep is the time when our bodies repair. It’s not wasted time. When I was a kid, people were talking about wanting to not sleep so that they can live more. The truth is we need the sleep, it is the time when we fix things that have been worn out or overstressed.
There are two sides of the autonomic nervous system – sympathetic and parasympathetic. The sympathetic, known as the fight or flight, helps us deal with threatening inputs, that’s the stress side. The parasympathetic, also known as the rest, repair and digest, is the side with which we repair things. So you cannot be both, you cannot be sleeping and acting at the same time, you cannot be repairing and running away from danger at the same time.
The other big contribution to how well we function in this world has to do with stagnation. The lymphatic fluids, the fluids in the body other than the blood, don’t have a natural pump. Your blood is pumped by the heart. Well, the heart is much more than just a pump, but at least there is this force that drives the blood around the circuitry, the arteries, and the veins. But the lymphatic fluid, which is extracellular, does not have a pump. The only time it gets moved is when you, the body, moves up and down against gravity. That’s why walking is so beneficial and that’s why using something like a mini trampoline or a vibrating plate is so beneficial to the human body. And then the third biggest contributor to a malfunctioning immune system would be the toxic burden. The more toxic we are, the more chance there is that we are blocking the normal function, the normal expression of things.
Your body tends to sequester, hide, put away things that it cannot get rid of. So if you inhale something, maybe coughing or sneezing is the way of trying to get rid of it. And of course, we eliminate things through the skin, so skin breakouts or sweating is an important part of the pathways. And of course, urine and feces are really important. So regular bowel movements are a requirement, and drinking enough so that your urine is running clear, not colored, it shouldn’t be smelly and it shouldn’t be anything other than very pale color. So I mentioned the mucosal barrier earlier in this presentation, but let’s get back to it. This is the lining of your nose and your lungs, your mouth and the guts, urethra and the reproductive canal. The resilience of the mucosal barrier, its ability to resist the ingress, the transition of things that shouldn’t get through the barrier, is very much dependent on nutrients.
Iodine is really, really important. It’s the shield mineral. Iodine is important for your thyroid, the thyroid uses about 2/3 of all the iodine in the body, but having an abundance of iodine is really important for being able to resist the transgressions, things getting across the barrier that shouldn’t. Zinc is also important, we need to have enough zinc, 25-50 milligrams of zinc every day is all it takes. By the way, if you see these white spots on your nails, those are indicating that there is a deficiency of zinc happening in your body for sure. Lecithin is another really important component. Lecithin is the universal emulsifier in the human body, it’s a lubricant, it makes things more resilient, and it helps to transport all things that are fat or fat-soluble throughout the human body. Both blood and the lymph are water-based systems, and you already know that water and fat or oil don’t mix. You need some kind of detergent to have those two connect, and lecithin is that detergent. So it helps us move things from wherever they may be hidden out to where we want them to be. I mentioned the toxic burden, lecithin helps us to be able to get rid of things much more efficiently.
Gut health is really important. 80% of the immune system resides at the interface between the lining of the gut and the blood system. Just outside of the danger zone. If you think of your mouth as the opening to the outside world, the tube that runs between your mouth and your anus is actually the outside running through the middle of you. Things that go through the digestive system are technically still outside the body until they are absorbed by the gut lining. And we should allow only the desirable things to get through the barrier, and the desirable things are the nutrients, the fully decomposed foods. So if the lining of the gut is damaged, if the microbiome that lives within that tube isn’t well balanced, you will experience problems.
So we need to have a balance of probiotics and prebiotics. Prebiotics is what feeds the probiotics. The probiotics are essentially the microbes, and they like humic and fulvic acid as a terrain to live in, it helps them communicate, and they need fiber, especially mucopolysaccharides, inulin, that is the food that the microbes need to feed themselves. It doesn’t feed us, it feeds them. And then there are herbs that will tonify this process. We can speed things up, slow things down. And my last note on the gut health is to eliminate foods that make things worse, industrial foods, food-like substances. We have the chemical industry feeding the agro-industry, that’s growing food-like substances that are not necessarily food anymore.
The worst culprit is wheat. Ever since they hybridized the wheat, I think it was about the 1970s, when they started producing the high-gluten wheat. It used to be like 6% gluten, 6% protein. Now it’s to about 12-13%. It was seen as a huge advance. Well, turns out that many, many people are at least sensitive, if not downright allergic to this gluten. Another problematic food is dairy, homogenization of the dairy, forcing the fat through a teeny microscopic hole that causes the globules of fat to disperse. It makes them so tiny that they actually can get through our mucosal barrier, which makes the dairy able to get into the bloodstream and cause problems. So we find that two most allergy-causing foods are gluten and dairy. That’s why I put them on this list.
The other major pathway are the lungs. A lot of dust particles that we shouldn’t get into the lungs are getting there because the ionization of the air is off balance. Negative ions help the dust to settle out, to drop out of the air. You would probably notice that among trees in parks and forests, breathing is easier and it feels wonderful, peaceful, relaxed. The opposite of what you experience indoors, the indoor air is usually on the positive side of ionization, whereas the forest air is somewhere in the negative ionization territory.
So to whatever degree you can, spend time in the forest, the more the merrier. And if you can install negative ion generators in your indoor space, do it. And air filters will help, of course, to filter out particles. So if you have issues, well, everybody has issues, some people worse than others, by removing the particles from the air, you are going to make it easier on yourself. Air filters are a good idea. We are also finding that there are a lot of microbes in the air. The microbes don’t breathe the way we do, they process oxygen through an enzymatic pathway, and it’s been found that silver in its ionic form is capable of disabling the enzyme that the microbes use to take in oxygen. When we do that, we are actually disabling their ability to proliferate, to grow, to reproduce. So you will find us promoting ionic silver, the other name for this product is colloidal silver. Colloidal means that there are these tiny blobs of silver, small enough that they are floating in the water. These ions of silver are reacting with the microbes. We promote ionic silver and have that available, and you can spray that in your mouth, you can inhale it, spread it around with a humidifier or a nebulizer. It all effectively stops the growth of viral, bacterial and fungal infections.
The other thing we have is ROS, reactive oxygen species. You would know that ozone is used to sterilize and neutralize microbes. Ozone is the most aggressive form of oxygen. You can also get that from hydrogen peroxide or from Oxy bleach, but those things are too aggressive, you cannot put them in contact with human cells, but what you can do is you can have this ROS, reactive oxygen species, that is non-toxic to the human cell, and you can put that into circulation. There is this ingredient called Bio Hydrox, we have that available in a product called Amazing Soak, you can also add it into a humidifier or nebulizer and broadcast it through the air, and as you inhale it, it will shut off or block the viral or bacterial infections, the same way as bleach would, without harming yourself.
Well anyway, viral infections, they are upon us, right? We are dealing with viral infections every year, just this year more so than others. One needs to be concerned with how they transmit. Some viruses are transmitted through air, like mumps I think is one of them, that will float in the air for days, or there are droplets of saliva, some are only transmitted when you exchange fluids. Lately, we have been discussing the rate of infection, how many people an infected person will pass it onto. With the common flu, one person will infect one other, or maybe one and a half. The latest, the newest coronavirus, that seems to be much faster. One person will infect multiple people before you even know you have it. That causes the infection to spread really fast. The incubation period means how long it takes before we can see the symptoms. What’s really interesting is this: let’s just say that you just got infected. A droplet, just one little droplet got transferred into your nose, and the virus doubles within your body every day.
Well, it takes some time to grow in size, to be significant. It may take 10 days, 14 days, before it’s large enough that your immune system all of a sudden has to now go all out with fever and coughing and all kinds of symptoms that are significant. But you have had that infection in your body all this time. So had you been using something like the colloidal silver to block the replication, you would never get out of the initial infection stage through the incubation into the active state. And then we deal with the symptoms, some are upper respiratory and some are through the skin, some viral infections will cause skin rashes and blisters and whatnot, like chickenpox for example. And then finally the severity, that really depends on the person and how their immune system is reacting.
Let’s just get to the specifics. This Coronavirus, that started as SARS, somehow mutated, whether it was a natural reaction or the bats as the story goes, or some military experiment gone silly, we don’t know how it started, but that is not the point. All we know is that it’s very infectious, easily transmissible and it can cause significant problems. This COVID-19 comes in through the eyes, nose or mouth, and busts through the ACE2 receptors, angiotensin. So people who are on ACE inhibitor drugs, people with heart conditions, they are going to get affected faster than others. What happens if indeed your body is having a hard time keeping it at bay and shutting it down, it goes into this cytokine storm, I’ll discuss that in a moment, but the cytokine storm means essentially the immune system going into overdrive, overreacting. This is the bouncer inside the bar going a bit crazy.
The natural way of dealing with this lung infection is coughing. We are trying to just expel stuff that’s in the lungs out through the coughing, like forced air leaving. (coughing sound) Just like that. The other way is to bake it with heat. Most viruses are quite fragile, you can actually disable them by increasing the body temperature. One of the tools that people have recommended is using the sauna, going into a hot air sauna. The viruses are disabled at about 133°F/56°C. If you have the option to go to a sauna every day, this is not the little sauna tent that you are sitting in, you need to be in the proper hot air sauna where you are breathing the hot air, if you can do 20 minutes of really hot air, you are likely to stay well even if you have been infected.
So I guess it’s a question of immunity, right? If you’ve had previous exposure, you have immunity, once you have had chickenpox, you are not going to get it the second time, because your body already knows how to deal with the chickenpox. Once you’ve had coronavirus, your body knows how to deal with it. The problem with the flu and the upper respiratory viruses is that they are mutating quite fast. That actually is the downfall of the flu shot. The medical industry is trying to create a vaccine by speculating what the next season might look like. So they will put certain species of the viruses into the flu shot, hoping that it’s going to be the ones that are coming, but they cannot predict the mutation. So when the mutated version arrives, we have no immunity to that. The only way we can deal with it is to go through exposure again.
So a healthy, young person without medical challenges, will go through the infection, the immune system will react to it, develop immunity, then shut it down. Unfortunately, a challenged person will not have such luck. They will have a very difficult time defeating the infection. That is where the vaccination story comes in. We all are hoping that we could get vaccinated for this COVID-19. I personally think that that is not going to work, because the mutations continue. Even if we get vaccinated against the flu that happened last year, next season is going to come with variations and mutations and we will still be unprepared. That is why you see these numbers like this season flu shots were 40% effective, that means 40% of what was coming was covered, and 60% was not. So I don’t think that is going to work out in the long run. I believe that a better way to deal with immunity is to strengthen the microbiome, make sure that the microbes living within us (that would be in the nose and the mouth and in the gut) are in good balance, and that the mucosal barrier is well maintained and strong. That goes back to the recommendation for iodine, zinc, and lecithin. And then finally figuring out how to not be stressed, how to deal with stress, or what we call the stress management. I don’t know if listening to the news gets you stressed, but maybe it might be smarter to find some way to not be attached to the outcomes.
So here is how we deal with viral infections. Of course, prevention is key, right? Avoiding exposure. This is what the latest strategy has been because we have no effective response to the infection itself, the avoidance is the best we can do. No contact. Because this COVID-19 is transmitted through air, by talking to one another from too close, every time I say the letter P and T, I can just feel the air coming out of my mouth with force, and it will get in the air, so if you are close enough, you are going to pick it up, or it will hit the surface of a bank counter or a door handle, and the next person that comes by and touches it and then puts their fingers in their face, their nose, their mouth, their eye, they are going to get infected from what I left behind. So avoiding the exposure is very good.
There has been a lot of discussions on whether face masks should be worn. By face mask, I mean any piece of fabric, even a scarf, a bandana or any facial covering that covers the mouth and the nose. By wearing a mask, I’m not protecting myself, I am protecting you. When I have something in front of my face, my spit is not going to end up on the counters and in the air. By wearing the masks, I’m protecting you, and by you wearing it, you are protecting me. That’s how this works. It’s mutual protection. We need to wash our hands because hands are the most common way to pick it up from surfaces. Let’s just say that I ended up getting a box of something, and that box could have droplets of somebody’s breath on it, that will be active for a couple of days, it does survive on various surfaces. So if I touch it, I need to wash my hands before I touch my face with my hands. So wash your hands more frequently.
And how do we block the reproduction of the virus? We do have the tools! As I already mentioned, we have the colloidal silver, we can spray the silver on the surfaces, we can spray the silver into the mouth and nose. Iodine works effectively by strengthening the mucosal barrier. You can gargle with an ounce of water with six drops of iodine tincture in it. You can get humic acid and fulvic acid, they are helping to strengthen the mucosal barriers, especially in the gut. You can use the Amazing Soak, you can soak in it or you can spray it in the air, it is very effective. All of these things are effective at blocking the ability of the viruses to reproduce. And of course, herbs, especially oregano. The P-73 Oregano has been studied against the SARS. I don’t think that there is a current study yet for this type of coronavirus, but if it worked on the previous version of the SARS, there’s a good chance that it will work on this one.
That was prevention. If we manage the prevention, if we manage to stop it from growing, we are good, we never reach the really sick stage. But some people, unfortunately, do reach the sick stage. The cytokine storm, which essentially is caused by an overactive immune system overproducing the immune cells and the cytokines. It’s just piling them on, it’s like a runaway train, like an avalanche, and because too many of these cells are arriving, it’s creating fluid buildup, especially in the lower lungs. That causes respiratory distress. And now in that fluid, there’s a secondary problem, which is pneumonia, bacterial pneumonia. The bacteria are in the environment all the time, they would not normally grow, because the lungs are managed to stay dry, but now that they are overfilled with fluids, the bacterial culture starts growing.
So what needs to happen is we need to essentially find a way to slow down the immune reaction. The doctors are prescribing antibiotics to deal with the bacterial infection, but we can actually get to it ahead of time, before this stage, by slowing down the overreaction of the immune system. And that can be accomplished by supplementing vitamin D3, you need about 10-20,000 units of D3. By the way, 15 minutes of sunshine on your body is worth about 10,000 units, So 20, 30, or even 40 minutes a day of full exposure is what you need. Fish oil is a great source of vitamin D, as well and vitamin A. Also, capsaicin, that is the alkaloid that makes the chili peppers hot. So chili powder or hot sauce in any form is going to help to shut down the immune system. And then the licorice and Aloe Vera, those are tonifying the immune system to be less intense.
At Life Enthusiast we have tools. You can see the link here on the screen, we also add it to the show notes. You can see a few important products on the screen as well that I would like to highlight here. Vitamin C provides the immune system with the excess electrons that the body needs. Humic acid improves the microbiome terrain in the gut. The silver helps to block viral reproduction. The Amazing Soak, that is the Bio Hydrox, that is also helping the body to block the growth of the viral infections. The Omega-Resp is the respiratory oregano. We have put together a discount for our listeners, the promo code is IMMWEB, that stands for IMMunity and WEBinar. Use the code at checkout to get 10% off of products that are in the cold, flu immunity category on the Life Enthusiast website. We can support you, we can make it more cost-efficient and effective! If you have any questions, you can reach us by phone, the number is (866) 543 3388. Visit our website www.Life-Enthusiast.com! My name is Martin Pytela! Thank you very much for listening!
Note: the information provided are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always consult with your medical professional(s) if you are dealing with a specific medical issue.