MEDHOL cc Trading as Reform Distributors: Reg No: 2000-023749-23
Suite 250, Private Bag X153, Bryanston, 2021
Tel No: (011) 659-0612 Fax: (011) 659-0217
E-Mail: we_are@yebo.co.za
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NEWSLETTER FOR OCTOBER-DECEMBER

Amazingly we have begun the last quarter of 2004! I am sure that many feel that this year (like many others) has flown past. Having experienced this awareness year after year, one begins to wonder that if life is passing by so quickly; we should learn to speed up our energies and awareness to keep up with the pace.

One principal I am becoming increasingly aware of is living my life in the present -becoming more aware of what is happening within my body, staying present and aware, learning to experience the different emotions and sensations passing through my body and at the same time, becoming fully awakened to what is happening around me. This is really helping me to become more grounded and experiencing life more fully, than I have in the past. Living with past memories or running ahead to what could be tomorrow, makes you loose out on the now. All that we really have is this present moment in time.

MARKETING:
We are targeting certain products to be advertised in health magazines. GTF Plus is being advertised as an advertorial in the Diabetic Focus this September. Please can all the Health Shops, Pharmacies and Practitioners ensure that they are well stocked to assist us in this Marketing drive.

Training Dates:
Training sessions are ongoing on a weekly basis. Please let us know if you would like to participate.

Product Promotions:
Product promotions are also ongoing. I am presently doing promotions on three Saturdays of the month and also on weekdays in certain outlets. If anyone requires me to do promotions at their outlet, please phone the office to book a slot.

Onto our topic of discussion for this newsletter:


THE IMMUNE SYSTEM

THE FACTS:
The Immune System protects the body from disease and is the body’s first defense in maintaining health, preventing illness and hastening recovery. It can detect dangers, and neutralise or destroy them. Each individual handles these dangers differently, depending on their genetic make-up and how their immune system has responded and matured. It is important to understand how this powerful and complex defence system functions in order to comprehend the many ways in which it can go wrong.

THE IMMUNE SYSTEM:
We have several innate (or natural) defences; one of which is a complex system, which protects the body against pathogenic organisms and other foreign bodies. The immune system incorporates the humoral immune response, which produces antibodies to react with specific antigens and the cell-mediated response, which uses T cells to mobilise tissue macrophages in the presence of foreign body. It also protects the body from invasion by creating barriers and inflammation. The local barriers provide chemical and mechanical defences through the skin, the mucous membranes and the conjunctiva. Inflammation draws polymorpho nuclear leukocytes and neutrophils to the site of injury where these phagocytes engulf the invading organism. The humoral response and the cell-mediated response develop if the first line defences fail or are inadequate to protect the body. The humoral immune response is especially effective against bacterial and viral invasions and employs B-cells that produce appropriate antibodies.

The principal organs of the immune response system include the bone marrow, thymus and the lymphoid tissues. The system also employs peripheral organs, such as the lymph nodes, spleen and lymphatic vessels. The antigen-antibody reactions of the immune system activate the complement system, which removes antigens from the body. The complement system contains several discrete proteins, which function to produce lysis of the antigenic cells. The humoral response may begin immediately upon invasion by the antigen or may start as long as 48 hours later.

A SUMMARY OF THE COMPLEMENT SYSTEM:
Phagocytes - cells that engulf and digest foreign organisms
Complement - proteins that bind to foreign cells and help attract phagocytes
Natural killer cells - that destroy abnormal cells
Interferons - chemicals produced by cells, which inhibit the replication of viruses

More sophisticated, adaptive, defences (antibodies and lymphocytes) develop in the early years of life. These defensive agents adapt to new challenges by generating a diverse range of specialized receptors and antibodies, which recognise and combine specifically with proteins on new disease-producing organisms. The immune system develops ‘memory’ which improves the response the next time the body is exposed to the foreign antigen (an important feature in vaccination).

In addition, individuals have a unique ‘tissue type’ (HLA – Human Leucocyte Antigens), which helps the immune system to differentiate foreign dangers from ‘self’ and is used to present new antigens to the immune system.

As with most complicated and essential defence systems, however, this can sometimes go wrong.

WHAT CAN GO WRONG WITH THE IMMUNE SYSTEM?
Becoming immuno-deficient is an abnormal condition of the immune system in which cellular or humoral immunity is inadequate and resistance to infection is decreased.
The Immune System contains lymphatic glands that help to filter out infection. Infections enlarge the lymph nodes causing them to swell up with millions of lymphocytes as the body mounts an immune response to kill the foreign organism. The glands also prevent germs from infecting other body organs. Infections enlarge the lymph nodes; particularly noticeable are the neck glands after a sore throat or other respiratory infection (for instance glandular fever, a viral infection transmitted by saliva, causing painful glands for weeks). The presence of painless large nodes is more serious. It is associated with Cytomegalo and the stabbing pains experienced are Epstein Barr Infections (One of the ME / Yuppie Flu Viruses) HIV, Aids and Cancer.

An understanding of the mechanisms that control our immune responses, and how these mechanisms can go wrong, is crucial in recognizing and diagnosing a range of conditions.

Immunology is the study of disease that deals with the body’s defence mechanisms and disorders of the immune system.

Symptoms of an oncoming infection:
Clumsiness - dropping things and bumping into things
Forgetfulness (memory lapses)
Fatigue (very tired)

Conditions that affect / impair the Immune System

What is the difference between a cold and the flu?

Cold symptoms
• Sore throat
• Sneezing
• Nasal discharge
• Headaches
• Coughing

A cold is a milder form of an upper respiratory infection usually due to a virus such as the Rhinovirus infection.

Flu symptoms
• Fever
• Respiratory symptoms such as coughing, sore throat, runny nose
• Headache, muscle aches and often tiredness and fatigue

Most people spontaneously recover from flu within a week, but can be very tired for some time after recovery.

If you have an impaired immune system you may develop serious and potentially life-threatening complications such as Bronchitis or Pneumonia. This can occur at any age, but the elderly, those under 5 years, as well as those suffering from chronic diseases are more prone to serious flu complications.

Flu weakens the natural defences of the body and additional infections by other harmful microorganisms can occur, delaying complete recovery.

OVER-ACTIVITY OF THE IMMUNE SYSTEM IN ALLERGIES
Allergies, Hayfever, Asthma, Eczema and food intolerances.

ALLERGIES - WHAT ARE THEY?
Allergies erupt when the body overreacts to a specific substance, sometimes a harmless one that does not bother other people at all. The term comes from two Greek words, meaning ‘altered reactivity’. Any substance or organism that is foreign to the body is dealt with by the immune system, which produces antibodies against it. In this way, any invading virus or bacteria can be attacked and killed before it can cause damage. The body remembers which invader encouraged the production of which antibodies and when those invaders appear again, it is quickly recognised and attacked. This efficient system can go wrong, however, becoming overactive and causing the body to react in an extreme way to normal substances. The body deals with them as though they were harmful invaders, creating an allergic reaction. This is an exaggerated version of the body’s normal response to invasion.

Allergies are usually characterised by itching, sneezing, wheezing, a running nose, excess catarrh, bronchial spasm, urticaria and hives, among other things - all of which are known as a histamine reaction. Histamine is a substance produced by the body in response to an attack on it, for example, an injury. It increases the size of the blood vessels, allowing fluids to reach and repair injured tissue.

BEING DRIVEN OR CHRONICALLY STRESSED, NERVOUS AND ANXIOUS

STRESS
Stress is a word commonly used in our fast paced society. No one can live without experiencing some degree of stress. Short-term stress is not necessarily bad for you, as it is a vital part of life. However, often-daily demands placed upon us accumulate to a point where it is almost impossible to cope. Stress can stem from anything that creates a disturbance within the body, including toxins.

We are geared to adapt to these stresses every day, but with prolonged or extreme stress these adaptation measures may become harmful. Prolonged chemical, emotional and physical stress places an increased demand on many organs and weakens the heart, blood vessels, adrenal glands and immune system. Long-term stress also causes depletion of micronutrients and protective glucocorticoid hormones secreted by the adrenal glands. These hormones are essential to regulate your blood sugar levels. Together these harmful processes increase your risk to developing diseases of lifestyle such as high cholesterol, high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, obesity and chronic fatigue.

FUNGAL INFECTIONS

SYSTEMIC CANDIDA ALBICANS / MONILIA ALBICANS
Yeast infestation should be suspected if a number of the following symptoms/circumstances apply (not all will apply to everyone)
• Asthma, Chronic Bronchitis.
• Eczema, Acne, Psoriasis.
• Persistent digestive symptoms such as: heartburn, indigestion, bloating, abdominal pain, gas, constipation, diarrhoea and irritable bowel syndrome.
• Muscular problems such as numbness, tingling, weakness, lack of co-ordination.
• Hypoglycaemia with inappropriate drowsiness, tiredness, lethargy, depression.
• Pain or swelling of the joints, nasal congestion, recurrent sore throat and cough.
• Pain or tightness in the chest, spots in front of the eyes, blurred vision, fluid in the ears.
• Severe general malaise, feeling lousy, sick or "poisoned".
• Problems connected with the nervous system including poor memory, a feeling of unreality, irritability, headaches, and inability to concentrate.
• Pre-menstrual tension
• Hypothyroidism.
• Irritation or burning of genital area, itching or soreness after passing a bowel motion, frequency, urgency or irritation on passing water.
• Sexual function deteriorates in both males and females.
• Fungal skin infections, athletes foot and thrush, a rash in the crotch area.
• Worsening of symptoms on cold and damp days, and being bothered by smelling perfumes, chemicals fumes like petrol, diesel, tobacco smoke.
ME / Yuppie Flu / Chronic Fatigue Syndrome follows some form of viral infection or occasionally, a vaccination. The range of symptoms include muscle fatigue and pain, chronic exhaustion, flu-like symptoms, mood swings, poor concentration, short-term memory loss, depression and some digestive complaints.

UNDER-ACTIVITY IN IMMUNE-DEFICIENCY
Antibody deficiency and AIDS
ACQUIRED IMMUNO-DEFICIENCY SYNDROME (more conveniently known as AIDS) has resulted in the greatest public health concern since the tuberculosis epidemics of the early 1900's. Viral infection with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is the causative factor in the development of AIDS, resulting in irreversible destruction of the victim's immune system by destroying specialised white blood cells, known as T4 helper lymphocytes. Without these cells, the immune system function is greatly compromised.

An important distinction must be made between those infected with the HIV virus and those who demonstrate the signs and symptoms of AIDS. All patients with AIDS are HIV positive, but not all HIV positive patients have AIDS. People who are HIV positive can be asymptomatic, whereas people with AIDS exhibit the symptoms of the disease.

Patients with AIDS suffer from secondary bacterial, viral and fungal infections that would otherwise not occur in an individual with healthy immune system. These are known as opportunistic infections. Examples include: Pneumocystis Pneumonia, Oral Thrush, Toxoplasmosis, Histoplasmosis, Tuberculosis and Disseminated Fungal Infections (Candida). Some forms of cancer (Kaposis Sarcoma) are also more commonly seen in the AIDS patient.

AIDS SYMPTOMS:
The symptoms of AIDS can be quite varied. Swollen glands, weight loss, fevers, exertional cough, skin lesions, chronic diarrhoea and persistent sore throat (fungal throat infection) are all seen. Symptoms will vary in accordance with the type of opportunistic infection. Pneumocystis Pneumonia is a common complication see in the AIDS patient.

Evaluation will include a history to identify potential high-risk groups. A physical examination may reveal skin lesions or the fungal throat infection that typifies this disease. The blood test for HIV will be more definitive, although false positives do still occur. Further testing may be necessary. The test result remains confidential in most states. Most patients will also have a CBC, electrolyte profile, urinalysis and chest x-ray performed as part of their general evaluation. Home diagnostic test kits for HIV infection are in the process of being marketed to the general public.

THE DISORGANISATION IN AUTO-IMMUNE RESPONSES: AUTO-IMMUNE DISEASES
Some of the auto-immune diseases are: Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis and Crohn’s Disease

ARTHRITIS
RHEUMATOID ARTHRITIS is known as an ‘auto-immune’ disease - the body’s immune system mounts an immune response against its own tissues, causing inflammation and diseased tissue. In case of Rheumatoid Arthritis, the part of the body affected is the tissue that lines the joint known as the Synovium.

Rheumatoid Arthritis affects 2-3% of the population and about 75% of suffers are women. It usually starts in early adulthood or middle age, but can sometimes start in childhood. The cause of Rheumatoid Arthritis is not known, but there is some evidence that it can be triggered by food.

Rheumatoid arthritis is a mysterious inflammatory disease in which the immune system turns on itself and starts to attack the joints. Although this progressive condition can strike at any age, it most commonly starts between 25 and 55. It is three times more likely to affect women than men.

Rheumatoid arthritis is characterized by inflammation in the joints of the fingers, toes, wrist or other joints of the body. The affected joints become swollen and stiff and may become deformed in the long term. People with the condition are also likely to feel generally unwell. Rheumatoid arthritis often lasts for many years, which come in waves, with painful periods being interspersed with times where suffers, are relatively symptoms-free (remission).

CROHN’S DISEASE is an inflammatory bowel disease that can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract. It is most often diagnosed in people between the ages of 15 and 35. Symptoms of the disease usually fluctuate in severity and may include: internal pain, fever, diarrhoea and weight loss.

METABOLIC DISORDERS
DIABETES is due to lack of insulin and the islets of Langerhans stop working. The cause may be auto-immune or hereditary. Symptoms are: weight loss, thirst and frequent urination.

Diabetes is a chronic disease in which the body is unable to produce enough insulin or cannot properly use the insulin that it does produce. Insulin, a hormone produced by the pancreas, is released into the blood stream when the blood glucose level rises (after a meal). Insulin allows glucose to move into the cells where it can be used for energy production. Glucose is a carbohydrate and is the body's main fuel.

When the body is unable to produce enough insulin, or use the insulin it does produce, cells cannot use glucose for the energy they need. When this happens the blood glucose level will become high.

THYROID PROBLEMS
HYPERTHYROIDISM is caused by an over-active thyroid, which means that the thyroid gland produces excessive amounts of the two main thyroid hormones, with the result that many of the body’s processes (such as the heart rate) speed up. The overproduction of thyroxine (Hyperthyroidism) causes weight loss, increased appetite, palpitations, anxiety, tremor, irritability, dislike of or sensitivity of heat, bulging eyes, sweating and infrequent menstruation. Because of the increase in their metabolic rate, people with over-active thyroid burn up kilojoules and use nutrients much faster than normal.

HYPOTHYROIDISM is the term the term used to describe an under-active thyroid gland, which causes the body’s metabolism to slow down. The illness develops slowly and apart from Goitre, early symptoms include tiredness, forgetfulness, dry skin and hair and as the disease progresses it causes apathy, dislike of cold, hair loss, fatigue, muscle aches, constipation, heavy periods, weight gain, depression and a hoarse voice. Hypothyroidism is prevalent in the elderly, but it can affect people of all ages. An under-active thyroid is a common cause of raised blood cholesterol levels in women. People with thyroid diseases have a reduced capacity to convert beta-carotene (found in some orange coloured fruit and vegetables and dark green leafy vegetables) into vitamin A. This results in a build-up of carotene in the blood and tissues, giving a yellow tinge to the skin. If left untreated, hypothyroidism in children may cause growth and mental retardation. As a precaution, babies are now usually screened at birth. In severe cases of hypothyroidism, the sufferer can become very cold and drowsy and may lose consciousness.

DISEASES OF THE VITAL ORGANS;
Infections and diseases of the brain
Infections and diseases of the cardiac system
Infections and diseases of the lungs
Infections and diseases of the kidneys
Infections and diseases of the liver

There are far too many to discuss in this newsletter.

Research has shown that supplementing the immune system can help you to resist illness. Lifeforce offers you a product that will play a vital role in the healthy functioning of your immune system.

Immuno Aid Combo:
Immuno Aid Combo is a superior formulation that boosts immune function and increases stamina. Selected vitamins, minerals and amino acids have been combined as an immune system booster. Also included are Lactoferrin and pre- and pro-biotics known to be nature’s greatest enhancers of a strong immune system. The pre- and pro-biotics also assist and restore balances in the intestinal system.

The Department of Health is looking at this formulation as one of their options in assisting people with impaired immune systems.

Please find the attached Immuno Aid Combo pamphlet for your information.

IMMUNE-BOOSTING MEALS
A menu plan can be provided to you with ideas for meals that may help to keep the immune system strong and healthy. The meals are based on foods that are rich in immune-boosting and cancer-preventing nutrients, such as vitamins C and E and the minerals Zinc and Selenium. They are low in the food elements that tend to weaken the immune system or help promote cancer such as sugar and fat.

Please contact Reform Distributors for this eating plan. The telephone number is (011) 659-0612 and office hours are 08h30-13h30.

We will be communicating more medically related information and news in our next Newsletter in 2005, which is in less than three months time.

Contact the offices if there is a specific ailment or illness that your would like us to discuss - your input is greatly appreciated. If you would like to advertise events happening in your area you can let us know 4-6 weeks prior to each newsletter going out.

Our doors will be closed from mid December and will re-open in the 2nd week of 2005. We want to thank you, our cliental, for your loyal support this past year and also to wish you a blessed Christmas and New Year!

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