Tag Archives: Dr Jacob Teitelbaum

Helping to combat fatigue and body-energy crises using D-ribose.

What frustrates many people who suffer from fatigue with or without the associated muscular pain known as fibromyalgia is the fact that, on paper, they are too well to be ill. Routine blood tests are typically normal in both situations but the level of pain and fatigue are far from normal and can be life destroying.

Back in August we posted a brief note on the research behind ribose and fatigue. In this post we take it a bit further and explain more of the detail.

It is true to say that there is no known cause for fibromyalgia with all laboratory tests including muscle samples (biopsies) taken from the most tender regions appearing perfectly normal on specialist examination and analysis. This lack of medical evidence places sufferers in a dilemma; how to manage the problem? Exciting work coming out of America is throwing new light on the issue. The latest in a number of small scale studies confirms what has been observed clinically. A simple sugar-like substance, known as ProRibose (contains pure D-ribose), can be of help. The study in question involved 41 sufferers and was set up to investigate the effects of D ribose on two key end points; improvements in pain relief and easing of fatigue. The average age of the study group was 48 years old and 78% were female. This is in keeping with the typical profile of a fibromyalgia and fatigue sufferer. As with many studies, some people dropped out before the test month was finished but of the 36 who completed the trial 69% reported significant improvements in both of the symptoms being investigated and a 25% improvement in quality of life, as assessed by a special questionnaire. The mechanism behind this exciting set of results is not clear. What is known, however, is that fibromyalgia sufferers have lower levels of the energy molecule called adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and a reduced capacity to make ATP in their muscles. It is also known from previous studies that D-ribose can fuel ATP production. This may, in part, be responsible for the effects of D-ribose supplementation which appears to reduce muscle pain and enhance quality of life for those suffering with fibromyalgia and / or chronic fatigue. D-Ribose, also known simply as ribose, is a simple sugar. Technically known as a 5 carbon monosaccharide, or pentose sugar it is used by all the cells of the body and is an essential compound in energy metabolism. Ribose also provides the structural backbone of our genetic material, DNA and RNA, certain vitamins and other important cellular compounds. If the cellular energy pool is depleted by disease, overwork, or exercise it must be replaced. Supplemental ribose can be viewed as jump-starting the energy manufacturing mechanisms and accelerating the process of energy production. To date D-ribose has been shown to be a safe supplement. Only two side effects have been noted; in very large doses, in excess of 10 grams, loose stools (diarrhoea) has been reported and in similar doses a transient dip in blood sugar levels. However, when using any supplement that contains or influences the blood sugar levels or energy levels it is always recommended that a diabetic patient consults a health professional beforehand. To reduce both of these potential but rare side effects, sensitive individuals should take D-ribose with a carbohydrate meal. Taking D-ribose at the recommended intake of between 2-5 grams per dose is not normally associated with any dose effects. A great advocate of the use of D-ribose in CFS/FM is Dr Jacob Teitelbaum. He has suggested that its critical to use the proper dose for the first 3 weeks, which is 5 grams (5000 mg) three times a day, after which the intake can be dropped to twice a day. Dr Teitelbaum is keen on using D-ribose in CFS/FM patients because he has noted that when people consume D-ribose, their body recognizes that it is different from other sugars and preserves it for the vital work of actually making the energy molecule that powers our hearts, muscles, brains, and every other tissue in the body. With its established association with the energy currency of the cell (ATP) D-ribose provides the key building block of ATP, and the presence of D-ribose in the cell stimulates the metabolic pathway our bodies use to actually make this vital compound. If the cell does not have enough D-ribose, it cannot make ATP. So, when cells and tissues become energy starved, the availability of D-ribose is critical to energy recovery. In his detailed article about D-ribose (available online) Dr Teitelbaum describes how normal, healthy heart and muscle tissue has the capacity to make all the D-ribose it needs. However, when normal tissue is stressed by overexertion, several days of rest will usually allow it to fully recover. The muscle may be sore during recovery, as we frequently see for the three or four days after a hard day of gardening or similar unaccustomed work. Eventually energy levels will be restored and the soreness will disappear. But when the muscle is chronically stressed by disease or conditions that affect tissue energy metabolism, the cells and tissues simply cannot make enough D-ribose quickly enough to recover. Heart and skeletal muscles just don’t have the metabolic machinery they need to make D-ribose very efficiently. The result is chronic, persistent pain, stiffness, soreness, and overwhelming fatigue that may never go away. Given the high level or reported muscular pain in cases of CFS/FM that fit this clinical picture it would appear reasonable to consider a trial of D-ribose following the dose recommendation outlined by Dr Teitelbaum, who as a CFS/FM sufferer himself, takes D-ribose every day. Most natural agents are needed for 4-9 months to help restore deficiencies but if D-ribose works for you its safe to use on a regular basis.

Study supports D-Ribose use

In a very recent study published in the Pain Journal this year, Dr Teitelbaum and colleagues followed 203 diagnosed CFS/FM patients over a 3-weeks course of D-Ribose therapy. They discovered that improvements began in the first week of treatment, and continued to increase at the end of the 3 weeks of treatment. Their findings are summarized below;

61.3 % increase in energy

37% increase in overall well being

29.3% improvement in sleep

30% improvement in mental clarity

15.6% decrease in pain


At the end of the study they concluded that D-ribose resulted in markedly improved energy levels, sleep, mental clarity, pain relief, and well being in patients suffering from fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

Further Information

The study can be view on line (Treatment of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia with D-Ribose– An Open-label, Multicenter Study. The Open Pain Journal, 2012, 5, 32-37).

Useful product link to ProRibose.



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Battling the Brain-fog of chronic fatigue

All of suffer from lapses of memory from time to time but when true brain-fog hits its normally accompanied by some other underlying problem such as chronic fatigue. However, if you can say yes to 7 or more of the 10 key features of brain-fog you may find some value in reading on.

1. Forgetfulness, especially with short term memory
2. Lack of focus with occasional disorientation
3. Difficulty in finding the right words and loss of mental agility
4. A reduced ability to problem solve and learn / retain new skills
5. Poor concentration
6. Phases of confusion
7. Aspects of depression / anxiety
8. Occasional feelings of ‘being spaced out’
9. Difficulty in judging depth and distance
10. Reduced ability to thing creatively or plan for the future

For sufferers of chronic fatigue syndrome (and fibromyalgia) one of the most difficult aspects to deal with is the issue of bran-fog. So many sufferers experience a severe impairment of their cognitive (thought processing) functions to the point where they fear they are loosing their minds. There are as many theories as there are remedies for the brain-fog issue but one theory that looks to stand the test of science relates to an enhancement of the cognitive functions by improving the ability of neurons (nerve and brain cells) to communicate with each other. For this to happen, tiny gaps between nerve cells, known as synapses, require chemical messengers to be released that bridge the gap to allow nerve-to-nerve communication to occur. These chemical messengers are called neurotransmitters and the most abundant neurotransmitter in the body is known as acetylcholine (Ach). Because Ach is not exclusively found within the brain it also influences many aspects of nerve and muscle activity as well as organ and blood vessel function. Within the brain itself Ach is a vital neurotransmitter involved in the formation and maintenance of memory and the ability to learn. It has also been associated with influencing maintaining emotional health.

Overcoming a biological barrier

A problem faced by many key nutrients required by the brain and nervous system is actually getting to the brain to start with. The internal brain environment is protected from toxins by a special circulatory system that forms a selective biological sieve known as the blood-brain-barrier (BBB). In essence, this is composed of a tightly fitting cell lining within the blood vessels of the brain that does not occur in other regions of the body. The end result is an ingenious way of keeping certain chemicals and other compounds within the circulation and available to the body but away from the delicate environment of the brain. Getting substances to cross the BBB has presented drug developers with considerable challenges but many naturally occurring nutritional compounds appear not to be affected by this toxin filter. One such nutrient, known as acetyl-L-carnitine (ALC), happily crosses the BBB and has been attracting considerable attention from researchers because of it’s ability to improve certain aspects of energy metabolism as well as enhancing neurological and brain functions. Interestingly, ALC is structurally very similar to the bodies own Ach and it is known that the neurons that respond to Ach are also receptive to direct ALC stimulation. Because ALC crosses the BBB it’s potential to assist brain function is now becoming apparent. Another key aspect of ALC’s ability to assist neurological health lies in it’s ability to supply the required building blocks for Ach production. Supporting this is a controlled study in which 481 elderly people with memory impairment showed improvement after 90 days of 1500mg ALC. While no one is saying that this is a cure for age related memory loss or Alzheimer’s, the study did illustrate the ability of ALC to enhance cognitive function, an action that may benefit those with CFS/FM related brain-fog. Keeping in mind the observation highlighted by the CFS/FM expert Dr Jacob Teitelbaum who reported on the discovery of low ALC in the blood and muscle of CFS/FM sufferers by two independent research centers, a case for a trial of ALC supplementation may be reasonable.

Acetyl-L-carnitine vs placebo

In the spirit of good science what people report and what can be proved to actually happen needs testing using a placebo study. In this type of study, a non-active but otherwise identical pill is given to one group while the other group takes the real pill. However, none of the subjects know is they have the ‘read deal’ or the dummy (placebo) pill!
The study, using 102 patients who met the criteria for being diagnosed as having fibromyalgia, looked at the effects of a course of acetyl-L-carnitine (ALC) over 10 weeks compared to placebo. To establish the effects of ALC the researchers measured tender points and assessed fatigue, depression, sleep and other common FM symptoms using well established and tested questionnaires. At the end of the 10 week trial the total number of tender points had declined significantly along with an improvement in overall pain and mood in the group taking the ALC supplement. In their conclusion, the researchers commented; “The results indicate that ALC may be of benefit in patients with fibromyalgia, providing improvement in pain as well as the general and mental health of these patients.”

Intake and safety

From the literature there has been a wide range of intake levels recommended, ranging from 1000mg (1 x 500mg taken 2 x day) up to 2000mg (2 x 500mg taken 2 x day) taken in divided doses twice a day. As a supplement, it should not be used by anyone taking drugs that alter blood clotting such as warfarin or acenocoumarol. Because of the lack of data ALC can’t recommended during pregnancy or breast feeding and there has been some cautions against using if you suffer from seizures or take thyroid hormones.

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Beat Sugar Addiction NOW!

Dr Jacob Teitelbaum MD

Beat Sugar Addiction NOW!

By Jacob Teitelbaum MD

Are you a sugar addict?

If the answer is yes, you are not alone.

The average person has 140 to 150 pounds of sugar per person of sugar added to their diets each year. Another 18 percent of our calories come from white flour (which acts a lot like sugar in our bodies). Eating almost twice our weight in sugar and white flour each year, it’s not surprising that we have become sugar addicts.

In our new Beat Sugar Addiction NOW! (BSAN) book, we describe the four main types of sugar addicts. In each type, there are different forces driving the addiction, and in all four types the excess sugar leaves people feeling much worse overall. By treating the underlying causes that are active in your type of addiction, you will find that not only do your sugar cravings go away, but your CFS/FMS/ME will feel dramatically better overall.

Here’s more good news. Once you have broken your sugar addiction, your body will usually be able to handle sugar in moderation. This means saving sugar for dessert or snacks where it belongs, and going for quality, not quantity. Dark chocolate is especially okay.

We will also discuss how to “have your cake and eat it too”, and how to use natural sugar substitutes to get the pleasure– without paying the cost. It is not our goal to eliminate things you love. Our goal instead is to teach you how to get the most pleasure you can, in a way that is healthy for your body and leaves you feeling better. In medicine, we have a simple rule. Never take away something pleasurable from a person’s diet without substituting something equally pleasurable.

Many of you have already noticed that although sugar gives you an initial high, you crash several hours later, and this leaves you wanting more sugar. In fact, sugar acts as an energy loan shark, taking away more energy than it gives. Eventually, your “credit line” runs out and you find yourself exhausted, anxious, and moody.

The Long-Term Consequences of Sugar Addiction

In addition to the immediate fatigue and emotional problems, sugar also causes many long-term health problems. For example, our consumption of high-fructose corn syrup has risen 250 percent in the past fifteen years––and our rate of diabetes has increased approximately 45 percent during the same time period. Although the sugar industry sometimes tries to confuse the public by claiming that corn syrup is not sugar, it is a form of sugar as far as your body is concerned… and more toxic than cane sugar.

Some chronic medical problems associated with excess sugar in our diet include:

  • Fatigue and pain
  • Weight gain
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia
  • Chronic sinusitis
  • Irritable bowel syndrome and spastic colon
  • Cancer
  • Metabolic syndrome with high cholesterol and hypertension
  • Heart disease
  • Hormonal problems
  • Candida and yeast infections
  • ADHD
  • Anxiety and depression

This is the short list. The actual list could go on for pages! Sugar is also a mood-altering substance, which is no surprise to anyone with a sweet tooth. Eating sugar also causes blood sugar to surge, insulin to spike, and fat to get deposited throughout your body. Obesity, often accompanied by diabetes and heart disease, is just one more consequence of our high-sugar diet.

The Value of Sugar Detox

I know the value of ridding the body of excess sugar. For more than thirty years I have treated thousands of people whose chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia were aggravated by their sweet tooth.

I also understand the problem firsthand. A former sugar addict myself, I came down with chronic fatigue syndrome in 1975. Eliminating my sugar addiction was an important part of my recovery.

Sugar addiction is the canary in the coal mine. It usually points to a larger problem that is also dragging you down. We don’t have anything against sugar. We simply don’t want you feeling poorly and getting sick because of it. In fact, we want you to feel great! And most of you will when you treat the problems accompanying your sugar addiction. Ready to get off of the “sugar roller coaster”? We’re happy to guide the way.

The basics of sugar detox are, of course, diet related––the standard method used to overcome sugar addiction. But an even deeper level of treatment is necessary to produce wellness. If you have tried the “cold turkey” approach to sugar addiction without nutritional strategies, treatment guidelines, and support, you probably found success elusive. That’s because getting rid of the sugar is but one step in an overall comprehensive approach that must address the mind, body, and spirit.

The problem with many medical self-help books is that they pick off a little corner of the problem and miss the big picture, so often you get frustrated and stop your program without getting well. My goal in writing Beat Sugar Addiction Now! is to give you an organized step-by-step approach for each type of sugar addiction, so you can effectively and easily kick sugar addiction––along with the hidden problems driving your addiction.

The Four Types of Sugar Addiction

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To beat sugar addiction, first you’ll need to figure out which type of sugar addict you are. Different kinds of sugar addiction have different underlying causes and require different treatments. Here are the four key types of sugar addiction:

Type 1: The Energy Loan Shark. Chronically exhausted and hooked on quick hits of caffeine and sugar

When daily fatigue causes sugar (and caffeine) cravings, sometimes all you need is to improve nutrition, sleep, and exercise. When your energy increases, you won’t need sugar and caffeine for an energy boost. This can often be done fairly easily. Instead of “energy loan shark” drinks, optimize nutritional support with a good vitamin powder (I like the “Energy Revitalization System” vitamin powder by Enzymatic Therapy—one simple drink replaces over 35 tablets of supplements). In addition, 2 studies we have done have shown that a special energy nutrient called Ribose (ironically, a sugar—but a healthy one) increases energy in CFS/FMS patients by an average of 61% after 3 weeks. Take a 5 gram scoop 3 x day for 3 weeks, then twice a day.

Type 2: Feed Me Now or I’ll Kill You. When life’s stress has exhausted your adrenal glands

For those of you who get irritable when you’re hungry and crash under stress, it is important to treat your adrenal exhaustion.

Increasing water and salt intake (unless you have high blood pressure or heart failure), a high protein diet with frequent smaller meals (called grazing), and realizing that life is not an ongoing crisis (contrary to the impression given by some in the news media) help your adrenal stress handler glands to stabilize. Natural support with Licorice, Vitamin B5, Vitamin C and Adrenal glandulars (all present in a product called Adrenal Stress End) make recovering much easier.

Type 3: The Happy Twinkie Hunter. Sugar cravings caused by yeast/candida overgrowth

For those of you with chronic nasal congestion, sinusitis, spastic colon, or irritable bowel syndrome, treating yeast overgrowth is critical. This can be done effectively with “pearl- coated” probiotics and both prescription and natural antifungals.

Type 4: Depressed and Craving Carbs. Hormonal deficienciesSugar cravings caused by your period, menopause, or andropause

For women who feel worse around their menstrual cycle, or whose problems increased when they entered perimenopause in their forties, estrogen and progesterone deficiency may be driving sugar cravings. In a woman’s earlier years, this is likely to reflect as premenstrual syndrome (PMS, with associated progesterone deficiency), with severe irritability around your periods. In your mid-forties, as estrogen deficiency begins, estrogen or progesterone deficiency often produces increased sugar cravings, fatigue, moodiness, and insomnia around your periods, as well as decreased vaginal lubrication.

Standard blood testing for hormonal deficiencies will not reveal the problems until they are very severe, sometimes leaving people deficient for decades. Eliminating the sugar addiction and other problems caused by low estrogen, progesterone, or testosterone can be life transforming.

Beat Sugar Addiction NOW!

To make it easy, Beat Sugar Addiction NOW! is structured as a workbook, so that when you’re done reading it you will have a treatment protocol tailored to your specific problems.

Ready to get a life you love? It’s time!

Love and blessings,

Jacob Teitelbaum, MD

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Confirmation of viral link with ME/CFS

So many years on and we still do not have the cause of ME (myalgic encephalitis), also known as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) but as the research continues we may be getting a step closer. Recent findings have found a “strong link” with a retrovirus called XMRV.
Studies on 2009 found evidence of the xenotropic murine leukaemia virus-related virus (XMRV) in about two-thirds of the people with CFS and less than 4% of people without the disease. However, these findings alone do not prove that the virus causes CFS, because they do not show whether the infection occurred before or after CFS developed. The research paper is cautious in its conclusions, saying that XMRV “may” be a contributing factor to CFS, but the opposite may also be true: CFS may make people more susceptible to infection with this virus. The research lead by Dr Vincent Lombardi and entitled “Detection of an Infectious Retrovirus, XMRV, in Blood Cells of Patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” published in the journal Science can be viewed here.
The research found that blood from 67% of people with CFS contained XMRV DNA compared with 3.7% of controls, overall samples from people with CFS were 54 times as likely to contain viral sequences as samples from healthy controls. This lead the researchers to conclude that XMRV may be a contributing factor in the development of CFS. They suggest that infection with the XMRV virus could be responsible for some of the abnormal immune response and neurological problems seen in CFS.
In a recent developement, a follow on study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNSA) showed that evidence of XMRV virus (and related viruses called “MLV”) was present in 86.5% of CFS patients vs. less than 7% of healthy controls. This is a dramatic difference and corroborates the previous findings. For details of the study click here.
To view more discussions relating to these new findings visit Dr Jacob Teitelbaum web site, click here. He has been following these developements with interest and has a wealth of resources on the subject. Click here.
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Chronic Fatigue Explained by Dr Jacob Teitelbaum

Following the release of my TAV1 newsletter I have received a number of interesting requests to take Dr Teitelbaum’s concepts a bit further – so in the first instance take a look at his personal explanation by viewing the video below. Feel free to comment on this as I feel its a massive area that would benefit from input from sufferers who live with chronic fatigue, pain and sleep disturbance.

Also, check out Dr Jacob Teitelbaum web pages

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