Pat is the kind of person who takes an active role in his personal health. He keeps his fat and sugar intake low, eats lots of fresh vegetables, and runs a few miles three or four times a week. But it wasn’t always that way.
Pat used to be plagued by low level fatigue caused by chronic allergies, and could never quite pinpoint what was causing them. Pollen. Mold. The cat. Maybe dust mites. He wasn’t exactly sure what allergen was on the loose, but he did know that when he awoke in the morning his nose was stuffy and his eyes were swollen and itchy.
Then in the course of a conversation with a marathon runner friend, Pat learned about sulfur. The runner told Pat that he takes sulfur before and after races to prevent muscle soreness, joint pain and post-race fatigue. I don’t know where Pat’s friend learned about sulfur but horse trainers have been administering it to million-dollar race horses for years and for the very same reasons. At the urging of his runner friend, Pat started taking MSM. After only a few days his allergy symptoms virtually disappeared.
Are we talking about that stuff in matches? Yes, sulfur the mineral. It’s in every living cell. It’s the fourth most plentiful mineral in the body and you cannot survive without it. But the form I’m talking about is organic sulfur–the kind your body can absorb and use. It’s known as–are you ready for this?–methylsulfonylmethane. That’s quite a mouthful so it’s referred to as MSM for short.
MSM helped alleviate Pat’s allergic responses because it competes for receptor sites located along mucous membranes. When sufficient MSM is present to occupy these sites, the harmful aIlergens that caused Pat’s reactions have no place to hang around. MSM also binds with some proteins related to allergies and produces inactive waste which the body then excretes.
Pat’s marathon-running friend was helped by the MSM supplements he took in part because sulfur compounds provide the flexible bond between proteins which make up the tissue in your body. As old cells die off, new cells are created. Without the necessary amount of sulfur, the new cell would become rigid. When tissue loses its flexibility, the result is pain and inflammation.
In a study of seven human subjects with respiratory deficiency, all were given MSM to take orally. Five had emphysema, and two had lung tumors plus fluid accumulation. Before and during the MSM supplementation, at two-week intervals, the five subjects with emphysema were tested for their ability to walk a specific distance. Within four weeks, all emphysema sufferers had at least doubled their walking distance. The two subjects with lung tumors were assessed by attending physicians, nurses and their family as being more alert and with an improved attitude. The lung fluid disappeared during the first months of the test period.
MSM is also being used to treat intestinal parasites. Some estimates are that 80 percent of humans are walking around with intestinal parasites. It’s more than likely you are sharing your food with tapeworms, hookworms, roundworms or pinworms. You can pick up parasites from food, water, or just from kissing or shaking hands. Parasites are in there absorbing the very nutrients you need, draining your energy, and possibly causing itching around the eyes, ears or anus, unexplained gas, sudden blurred vision, a burning sensation in the stomach, digestion difficulties, diarrhea, unexplained menstrual problems, sexual dysfunction, slower reflexes, heart pain, chronic fatigue and loss of appetite or overeating.
MSM puts down a coating on the walls of your intestines like paint that parasites find impenetrable so they can’t get attached to you. When they can’t get attached, they can’t chow down at your expense, can’t excrete toxins, and can’t reproduce. Unable to hang on, the parasites are simply flushed out of your system. It appears MSM also boosts the immune system, which enhances its ability to fight parasitic infection.
The sulfur amino acids our bodies need are available in animal protein foods such as meat, fish, poultry, eggs and milk. Grains, legumes and fresh, unprocessed vegetables like onions, garlic, cabbage, Brussels sprouts and broccoli contribute lesser amounts of this important mineral. Vegetarians in particular may be deficient in sulfur, and should be encouraged to eat raw vegetables. MSM is usually prescribed for 3-4 weeks at a time, at 1000 mg three times daily with meals. There appear to be no undesirable side effects with MSM as long as it is taken with meals. Because sulfur works synergistically with vitamin C to build healthy cells, it is ideal to take it in combination with vitamin C and bioflavonoids.
Editor’s Note: This article was excerpted from Dr. Mindell’s book, “Earl Mindell’s MSM Miracles, Methysulfonylmethane, The Mitey Sulfur Supplement”, Keats Publishing.