Health News - MSM
The Olive Branch
NEWSLETTER SPECIAL - Revised 2nd EDITION
Subject: Methyl-Sulfonyl-Methane (MSM)
This is a report of information compiled from various health sources. We do not necessarily endorse everything we found in our research, but wanted to provide you with an overvue of information on the subject of MSM.
WHAT IS MSM?
Most people have heard of DMSO, and how hundreds of thousands of people have been helped by using DMSO. A few years ago, the world's leading DMSO researcher, the eminent Dr. Stanley Jacobs of the Oregon Health Sciences University, discovered and was able to isolate an extremely important and beneficial part of DMSO. It is referred to as Methyl-Sulfonyl-Methane, and is simply known as MSM. MSM is a nutritional form of biological sulfur. It is an amazing, naturally occurring vital nutrient found in all living organisms and foods, and has many desirable properties and effects for wellness and overall good health! It is not a sulfite or sulfa drug. Nor is it a cure-all. But, it certainly is a very supportive ingredient in recovering or maintaining health.
It looks and feels like cane sugar and is slightly bitter. Biological sulfur is the third largest ingredient found in the human body. Methyl-sulfonyl-methane is not a chemical, drug, petroleum byproduct, herb, stimulant, synthetic food additive, or any other non-organic substance. It is completely safe, odorless, and non-toxic. It is not a cure-all, but, has been tested and proven to assist in the relief of many health problems. It rarely has side effects.
MSM has been reported as health support for the following:
Constipation, Candida yeast infections, asthma, emphysema, arthritis, tendonitis, muscle cramps, back pain and various other pain issues. It has been used by some people as support to increase stamina and relieve lactic acid build-up during workouts; detoxify and energize the body; increase blood circulation; strengthen capillary walls; assist in keeping cells from becoming rigid; reduce varicose veins; help keep hormones in balance; relieve allergies to foods, drugs, and environmental irritants; aid the liver in bile secretion and choline production; help to control stomach acidity while maintaining the body's normal pH balance; help aide in the healing of intestinal walls; assist toward increasing the body's ability to regulate insulin; aid in carbohydrate metabolism; boost vitamin, mineral, amino acid, & antioxidant utilization; speed wound healing; and assist with collagen synthesis thus keeping hair, skin, and nails healthy and beautiful.
WHY DO WE NEED MSM? MSM is a natural form of organic sulfur found in all living organisms, and is present in low concentrations in our body fluids and tissues and needs to be replaced daily. It is estimated that the human body uses up at least 1/8 teaspoon of MSM each day! It is found in a variety of fresh foods, including fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, and milk. Unless your diet is composed primarily of raw foods, it is unlikely that you are receiving enough MSM for proper health management. When we process our foods with heat or drying, we lose most of the MSM that is vital to our well-being. MSM helps our bodies utilize the vitamins that we take, providing the means to derive the maximum benefit from those vitamins.
MSM is part of the Amino Acid Chain. Without the proper amount of MSM in our bodies, the amino acids will continue to build the glands, but fail to produce the correct enzymes, making us prone to unnecessary illness. MSM is a flexible bond between proteins. When a cell dies, a new cell takes its place. Without the needed amount of MSM, it attaches but becomes rigid. When tissues lose their flexibility, problems develop with the lungs and other parts of the body.
WHAT DOES MSM DO?
MSM helps in detoxification of the body and increased blood circulation. Because there are few nerves in the bones, our pain comes from the soft tissue. Aspirin shuts off the nerves, but the muscles are still damaged. MSM helps reduce inflammation, permits the muscles to heal and prevents them from becoming sore. If you play sports or work-out in a gym and normally get sore muscles the next day, some doses may indicate 1/2 teaspoon (4 capsules) of MSM before exercise. If taken after exercise, some report that the soreness will go away faster.
MSM is a free radical scavenger, so it is very useful for anyone with allergies to food and pollens. MSM does not work against medications. In fact, it has been suggested as helpful in getting the most from them. MSM helps in the control of acidity in the stomach, so it should help people who have ulcers. MSM has been reported to be able to coat the intestinal tract and that may indicate that parasites will lose their ability to hang on. This could be very useful for Colon health.
MSM is the transport molecule for elemental sulfur or assimilable source of essential sulfur which is required for proper assimilation of the alpha amino acids methionine and cysteine. In addition, the peptide hormone insulin requires sulfur in its molecular structure and numerous other proteins, catalysts, and enzymes incorporate sulfur into their molecular framework. Proteins are essential for proper cellular metabolism and soft tissue synthesis. Proper protein synthesis can only be achieved with MSM monomers which maintain the correct molecular framework for soft and connective tissue throughout the human body.
At higher levels MSM functions as a pharmaceutically active agent which can be used safely and effectively for a variety of purposes. MSM, unlike DMSO, is a "dietary" factor and is free of unpleasant odors and neutralizes the toxicity of anticholinesterase and could provide some protection against insecticide exposure or ingestion. When administered orally it is effective in ameliorating symptoms of physiological response to stress including gastrointestinal upset, inflammation of the mucous membranes, pain associated with musculoskeletal system disorders, and infectant allergens. It appears to augment immunological competence through a natural vitamin like moderating or normalizing activity for various body functions. It is noted for its exceptionally non-toxic nature for both children and adults, including geriatric patients.
MSM may also be effective in ameliorating gastrointestinal upsets such as that produced by the ingestion of aspirin and other pharmaceuticals or parasitic infections. Individuals with gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea, chronic constipation, nausea, hyperacidity and/or epigastric pain, or inflammation of mucous membranes may also experience some relief. Individuals with symptoms of pain and inflammation associated with various musculoskeletal system disorders, including arthritis, reported substantial and long-lasting relief. A combination of MSM and ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) reported a greater benefit. This combination has been reported especially useful in correcting leg cramps, as in athletes who experience severe leg cramps during sports activity. Migraine sufferers also have obtained substantial relief while arthritic patients report relief from pain and stiffness as well as reduced swelling and inflammation.
Clinical tests suggest that MSM has ameliorating or curing activity against a variety of medically important parasitic, microbial, fungal problems of the intestinal and urogenital tracts. MSM appears active against Giardia lamblia (traveler's diarrhea), trichomonas Vaginalis, Nematodes, Enterodbius and other intestinal worms, systemic infections by Histoplasma Capsulation, Coccidioides Toxoplasma and other in vitro susceptible organisms. MSM may affect such infection by competing for binding or receptor sites at the mucous membrane surface presenting a blocking interface between host and parasite. It also appears to augment immunological competence which may also partly explain its effectiveness in treating parasitic infections.
Less than 20% of the population may experience negative detoxification symptoms in the first one to ten days during which toxins are flushed from the system. Symptoms may include some diarrhea, skin rash and/or possible headache along with several days of fatigue. In general, some health experts say that the more intense the symptoms the more toxins there are in the body and the more MSM is needed for detoxification. To reduce toxic symptoms (if you suspect candida or metals) start with a lower dose.
Some people with chronic to severe allergies to environmental materials such as house dust, pollen, wool animal hair, feathers, and other diverse allergens have reported substantial to complete relief of their allergy symptoms. Allergy symptoms ranged from respiratory congestion to inflammation, itching, mucoid discharges, and general discomfort.
MSM is reported by sources to be supportive of health for those with the following:
- * Allergies (food, drugs, environmental irritants)
- * Asthma
- * Yeast Infections
- * Skin Problems (eczema, seborrhea)
- * Muscle Cramps
- * Emphysema
- * Arthritis
- * Tendonitis
- * Stress
- * Constipation
- * Digestive System Problems
- * Inflammations
- * Toxicity
- * Blood Circulation Problems
- * Hormonal Problems
- * Diabetes
- * Tiredness & Fatigue
HOW MUCH MSM SHOULD BE TAKEN?
MSM is the missing link in our food chain. One-fourth of 1% of our total body weight is sulfur. The body needs about one (1) tablespoon a day for maintenance alone and more with increased activity.
A single dose of MSM is usually not effective in ameliorating symptoms. Noticeable results are usually seen within 2 to 21 days. The amount of MSM in each dose is not critical - but, body weight should always been considered when deciding on a proper dose. The reported minimum individual dose is about 750-1000 mg twice a day. However, total daily dosages of 1500 to 5000 mg have been recommended by some sources (2500 to 5000 mg being preferable). For a maximum benefit, it has also been recommended to use an initial "load" dose of 3000 mg twice a day (this dose is reported safely continued indefinitely for maximum results). After initial treatment, physical energy levels should increase. The benefit of MSM will further be enhanced when 2000 mg or more of Vitamin C per day is consumed.
WHERE IS MSM FOUND?
MSM or DMSO2, a derivative of DMSO, has been found in primitive plants such as Equisetum arvense and in the adrenal cortex of cattle. MSM is found naturally in food when food is fresh, it is driven out of all foods, even with moderate processing. The "S" in DMSO2 stands for sulfur, most people are sulfur deficient unless they eat their fish and meat raw and their vegetables uncooked. MSM is present in most green plant food stuffs and certain algaes, and a variety of fruits, vegetables, and grains in small amounts.
WHY DO WE NEED TO SUPPLEMENT WITH MSM?
If MSM is found in all foods, why do we need to supplement with MSM?
Because of its volatile nature, MSM is quickly lost from food when it is processed, cooked, and/or stored. The second you pick fruit or vegetable from the tree or vine, it begins rapidly losing the MSM. Even in meat MSM is not abundant as it used to be. Today, animals are being fed with dried, stored grasses, hay, and grains, deficient in MSM. When your body uses the MSM molecule to produce a new cell, the MSM is lost forever. We need to continuously replace the body's supply of MSM to produce new and healthy cells. A conventional diet does not supply the minimum requirement of MSM. It is absent in synthetic food additives, dietary mineral compositions, food substitutes, and most fillers used to dilute or modify foods. With today's modern diet of cooked and otherwise processed and diluted foods most if not all, diets of civilized man are deficient in this critically important ingredient.
The body uses MSM to create new and healthy cells. Vitamins and amino acids work with MSM during this process. Without proper levels of MSM our bodies are unable to build good healthy cells, and this leads to illness. Our bodies are producing new cells 24 hours per day. If your body doesn't receive the proper nutrition and building materials it needs it will produce unhealthy dysfunctional cells deficient of the basic ingredients that constitute a healthy cell. If we want a good flexible cell, capable of maintaining good health, we need to supplement our diets with MSM which enables the body to heal itself. Your body knows what it needs. It will use MSM wherever it is needed in your system. Give your body the MSM it needs so it can build itself strongly and heal itself when necessary. Nutritional sulfur is an essential building block for over 150 life-sustaining substances.
HOW SAFE IS MSM?
MSM is safe as a food supplement and lotion. It has no reported toxicity. Because of its inert nature, MSM is non-allergenic, non-pyretic, and has no interfering or undesirable pharmacological effects. It has even been reported as a safe blood dilutent. The body will use what it needs and after 12 hours, will flush any excess amounts out of the body. Because it is a free radical and foreign protein scavenger, MSM could support the body in cleaning the blood stream. This can have a dramatic affect on allergies to food and pollens. Even fingernails and hair has been known to grow faster and become stronger! This might be explained by the fact that there is more MSM in hair and nail cells than in any other part of the body.
SOME SPECIFIC HEALTH BENEFITS
A majority of MSM users report that ENERGY is the first noticable result. MSM does so many positive things that it is one of the hottest subjects in the area of alternative medicine. Some of the information below was excerpted from studies that were conducted at the Department of Surgery of the Oregon Health Science University in Portland, Oregon.
ALLERGIES: Oral MSM moderates diverse allergic responses as to pollen and foods. Antiallergy medication and dissemination methods may be sharply reduced. An allergic reaction is simply your body's reaction to something foreign in your system. Your body responds with a sneeze, wheeze, swollen, puffy eyes, etc. Every twelve hours your body is designed to flush each cell of any unwanted debris and MSM helps to flush foreign particles from the system. When your diet is deficient of MSM, the cell walls can become hard and stiff and this hinders fluid flow through the cell walls. Getting enough MSM is thought to soften the cell walls, allowing foreign proteins and free radicals to be washed out.
ALZHEIMER'S & MENTAL HEALTH: The brain is made up of billions of nerve cells, intricately connected with each other like electrons in a electrical circuit. When you think - you send electrical impulses throughout your brain. Alzheimer's disease is a condition where the brain can short circuit and send brain impulses to the wrong synapse creating confusion. Aluminum is suspected as one of the culprits that coats the brain cells adding to this problem. As MSM helps in softening cells, it could be a helpful part of flushing unwanted deposits out through the blood stream. Individuals on MSM have reported increased alertness, enhanced ability to concentrate, reduced mood changes, and elevated mood. There have also been users reporting reduced depression and relief within hours rather than days, as had been their prior experience with anti-depression medication.
DIABETES & HYPOGLYCEMIA: When the pancreas works too hard and fast to produce and carry insulin, it can become injured and stop working correctly. The cells in the body can become rigid and non-permeable. The blood sugars that are not being absorbed in the cells saturate the blood stream, creating a high level of blood sugar. By taking MSM regularly to assist cells to absorb better, this could allow the pancreas an opportunity to regulate better. When blood sugars are absorbed through cell walls, the body becomes healthier - allowing the pancreas some time to improve its function.
LUNGS & EMPHYSEMA: Some evidence suggests that MSM is a useful dietary supplement to reduce lung dysfunction. Emphysema is not caused by smoking. But the smoking burns the tissue in the lungs so that the cells are dying faster than the body is able to replace them with new cells. Flexibility is lost in the lungs and they tear. If this happens too often, you start to build a type of scar tissue and lose the ability to expand and contract freely. MSM gives your body some of the nutrients it needs for building flexible cells which contributes to strong lungs.
MUSCLE CRAMPS / SORENESS: MSM has the surprising ability to reduce the incidents of, or eliminate entirely, muscle cramps, Night leg cramps, muscle spasms, leg and back cramps after long periods of inactivity or in Athletes such as runners, who experience cramps during the participation in their sport. This type pain comes from overworked muscles which produces crystallization and build up of lactic acid. The MSM helps to flush the lactic acid out, along with all the other bad toxins in your system. By taking sufficient amounts of MSM (and enough filtered water), toxins that cause soreness are flushed out of your system.
PAINS & INFLAMMATIONS: MSM works on aches and pains associated with systematic inflammatory disorders. According to clinical studies, individuals presenting signs and symptoms of pain and inflammation associated with various musculoskeletal system disorders reported substantial and long lasting relief while including MSM in their daily diet. Some Migraine sufferers have obtained substantial relief with MSM. MSM helps to soften cell walls to allow transport and absorption into cells and this helps to increase circulation. By increasing circulation there is less build up of pressure that adds to pain. It is supportive of good circulation and low pressure. Think of a cell as a balloon full of water but instead of rubber it's protein. When the protein is tough the water pressure inside the cell can become much greater than the water pressure outside the cell, and this causes inflammation or inflating of the cell. Aspirin shuts the nerve off but the cell is still damaged. MSM effects the protein so that the water freely flows through the cell wall. The cells flexibility enables elimination of toxins and absorption of more oxygen and nutrition to get inside the cell. MSM has been reported to help improve the chemical profile of arthritic patients (e.g. providing relief from pain and stiffness, reduced swelling and inflammation, coupled with a return of blood chemistry toward normal).
MICROBIAL INFECTIONS: MSM has an alleviating effect on a variety of parasitic microbial infections. Efficacy can be determined by in vitro testing to determine growth inhibition or killing of the specific Organism by exposure to MSM at various concentrations. It appears that MSM has the ability to return the parasite susceptible tissue to normal with no impairment or injury to the host. Since MSM is an anti-parasitic it has the ability to be effective against diverticulosis. Hook worms, tape worms, and pin worms hang on to the pockets in the colon. MSM fills in the pockets and leaves a natural Teflon-like coating that they can't cling on to. As the worms hatch they flush out helping to avoid diverticulosis and constipation. Clinical tests suggest that MSM has an activity against a variety of medically important parasitic tracts. MSM, for example, is active against Giardia, Trichomondads, and round worms. MSM may affect such infections by competing for binding or receptor sites at the mucous membrane surface, presenting a blocking interface between host and parasite.
PMS: MSM assists the glands to help maintain a normal level of production. The normal level of enzymes, acids, and hormones, allows the body to go in and out of the cycle smoothly eliminating the cramps, headaches and nausea that sometimes come with the monthly cycle.
ULCERS: Your amino acids are all sulfur bonders, without the sulfur they are not complete; When they build a gland, the gland puts out hormones and enzymes that work as thermostats for chemical production in your body. Without the sulfur, glands do not work properly. When they produce too much stomach acid that can result in ulcers. Many over-the-counter medications mask the symptoms and do not promote a healthy balance. MSM is a good source of sulfur to help normalize the body.
WATER RETENTION: The kidneys start slowing down as a result of bad cell function. The MSM gives the body some of the building blocks it needs to make good cells. When bad cells are replaced by good ones, the kidneys will function much better. With healthy kidneys, the body can eliminate water retention.
CONSTIPATION: Supplementing the diet with 100 to 500 mg of MSM per day has been reported in clinical studies as helpful in the relief of constipation. Information edited by permission from Copyrighted © 1998 MSM research report supplied by our associate Quiles. Please adhere to Copyright© Laws.
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TESTIMONIES FROM MSM USERS
"MSM, when taken in combination with vitamin C and pycnogenols, has given me the first genuine relief that I have ever experienced from my severe allergies, sinusitis, and asthma. For the first time in 53 years, I am 100% allergy free with no more shots, antihistamines, decongestants, or inhalers! MSM has also given me noticeably increased energy and stamina - both physical and mental!" - J. Bennett
"My name is Joan I used to have cramps and nausea every month. I started taking MSM powder two times a day. One heaping teaspoonful in the morning and in the night for two months. Now I do not have the cramps and nausea any more. I take one teaspoonful a day, and I feel good."
"My doctor had told me I had high blood pressure and that it was damaging the vessels in my eyes. He said the condition was irreversible, but could be stopped. I went to an ophthalmologist this morning and he could not find this condition in either eye. Six weeks ago I started using MSM. So, here's a condition that more that 2 doctors looked at in my eyes and said this is irreversible. Six weeks into taking MSM, I go to have this in-depth look-see and there is no sign of damage? Should I tell my doctor next time I see him?" - B. Sheaffer
"We bought some for a friend who is a severe diabetic. Doctors have wanted to amputate her legs due to complications from the diabetes. She has been on MSM for about four weeks now. She also started a 1/4 teaspoon twice a day. The first three days her blood sugar shot up (no doubt a "healing crisis") but since the fourth day, she is taking less than half her normal dose of insulin. Furthermore, she began to notice itching in her legs and by the third week leg cramps. She had not felt anything in them for a couple of years. So even though she is probably going through a "healing crisis" with her legs and they hurt like the dickens, she is thrilled to feel anything at all. (Her doctor thinks she is imagining the leg cramps.) We'll keep you posted as to how it turns out!" - Laura Crumpacker
"My name is Bob Speer and I'm a martial arts instructor. Because I over extended my joints while training, I had pain and a bad inflammation in my knees. I took MSM and literally in a few hours had relief of the pain. After continuing to take MSM, over a short period of time the swelling in my knees went down and I could see my knee caps again. Because of the MSM I have mobility, agility and feel much better."
"I had an infection in my bladder that spread to the vagina and so many antibiotics later I was still feeling its effects. It would not completely disappear. I read about MSM and decided it couldn't hurt to try this. With in one week of taking these pills, I can say it has totally gone away and my urine culture has come back negative for a change. I really think these pills helped me with this infection." - Dorothy C.
"I wanted to share a couple of experiences we've had with MSM. My husband, Bruce suffers from CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome). We started taking MSM, just a 1/4 teaspoon twice a day and noticed a significant improvement in our energy and stamina within a couple of weeks. While my husband still requires more sleep than most people, his days are more productive and his cognitive ability and concentration has improved tremendously."
"My name is Mr. Jones, my kidneys were not working right and caused by legs to retain water. My legs were swollen so badly that I was unable to fit in my shoes. I was introduced to MSM and began taking two teaspoons daily (a.m. - p.m.). Within a few days my kidneys began working right and the swelling was reduced to normal. Because of this I know MSM really works!"
"The MSM is amazing! I didn't belive it would work and reluctantly tried it for my gout problem. I've also used it for back pain. I even gave some to a friend of mine that couldn't even get out of bed without terrible pain. He was grateful and keeps thanking me for it." Thomas C.
Please note: the information contained herein has been compiled from various sources and for information purposes only. The above statements have not been evaluated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. We make no claims, either expressed or implied, that any products mentioned in this newsletter will cure disease, replace prescription medication, or supersede sound medical advice.