Ankylosing Spondylitis

Anklyosing spondylitis is a rare rheumatological condition that causes stiffness and inflammation of the spine and sacroiliac joints, and is characterized by a “bent forward” posture. The condition may be linked to genetic predisposition, and 90 percent of all cases occur in men between the ages of 20-40.

Early, mild symptoms of anklyosing spondylitis include recurring low back pain, pain along that sciatic nerve that runs from the buttocks down to the leg and foot, and stiffness on rising in the morning. As the condition progresses, the pain can spreads from the low back up to middle and/or higher back, and up to the neck. Other symptoms include pain in arms and legs, fatigue, muscle rigidity and more stiffness, anemia, and weight loss.

What To Consider

If you suffer from anklyosing spondylitis, test for identifying gastrointestinal problems, stool sample and scraping to rule out amoebic, bacterial, fungal, or other parasitic problems. Also test for food allergies and assess your need for digestive enzymes. An effective method for determining causal factors is electrodermal screening (see Energy Medicine.)

Self-Care Tips

Diet
Follow a whole foods diet, emphasizing a variety of organic vegetables and ruling out food allergies. Holistic physicians have treated ankylosing spondylitis successfully by identifying and eliminating allergy-causing foods. and recommending avoidance and food allergy nutrients. Researchers at King’s College Hospital in London have found a link between ankylosing spondylitis and bowel dysbiosis (incursion or overgrowth by undesirable bacteria, in this case Klebsiella). They discovered that the majority of patients placed on a low-starch diet had a halt in the progression of their symptoms.

An overgrowth of Candida albicans (a naturally occurring fungus in the body) can also be involved in creating the damage to the gastrointestinal tract which allows the Klebsiella bacteria to enter the bloodstream. For this reason, and anti-candida, low-fat diet may be very useful, supplemented with friendly bacteria such as Lactobacillus acidophilus and L. bulgaricus to reestablish a normal bowel flora.

Nutritional Supplementation
Take vitamin C to bowel tolerance (until you have loose stools and/or an excess of gas; at that point, reduce your vitamin C intake by 1,000 mg or more, until bowel symptoms abate and stay on the reduced level).

Herbs
Many anti-inflammatory and alternative herbs have been used to alleviate the symptoms of anklyosing spondylitis. The following mixture is particularly recommended by herbalists and practitioners of botanical medicine: Combine the tinctures of meadowsweet, willow bark, black cohosh, prickly ash, celery seed, and nettle in equal parts. Take 1/2 teaspoonful of this mixture three times a day. In cases of anklyosing spondylitis accompanied by rheumatoid arthritis, add wild yam and valerian to the mixture and take one teaspoonful of this mixture three times a day.

Juice Therapy
Combine the juice of equal parts of carrot, beet celery, parsley, potato, alfalfa.

Caution

If your symptoms persist despite the above measures, seek the help of a qualified health professional.

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