When Seun Babalola called me about three weeks ago and asked for first aid therapy for a middle-age sickle cell man in deep crisis, I scribbled a note which formed the basis of today’s column.

As a note, it cannot be comprehensive. But it should be useful for people who wish to avert a crisis or manage one.

As I was scribbling the note, a young Mass Communication graduate of Moshood Abiola Polytechnic, Abeokuta, Miss Morayo Fadele, who was in my office, asked if I could broaden the tips to include a therapy for leukaemia (blood cancer). Her father bowed to this condition a few years ago. And, as she said, she would like to be of help to anyone challenged by it. I apologised that home or clinic therapies for leukaemia would have to wait. But I made a few suggestions which included stinging Nettle, Yarrow, Blood root, Horsetail, wheatgrass, Chlorella etc.

Leukemia is cancer of the blood. And the blood is the river of life flowing in our blood vessels. The blood has a specific composition. Anything outside this natural formula is at variance with healthy blood and can spell doom. This, constant recomposition of the blood to maintain the natural formula is crucial for averting blood disaster. But before we can recompose, we must clean out foreign elements from the bloodstream. This will lead us to detoxification. All blood filters in the body must be at work and efficient. The liver, the kidneys, the lungs, the skin and the digestive tract are important for this purpose. Recomposition of the blood must recognise similarities in the green of Chlorophyll, “the blood of plants’’ and the red of hemoglobin, the red pigment of the human blood which transports oxygen the elixir of life. This, chlorophyII and hemoglobin are like two sides of a coin. The structure of cholrophyII is HYDROGEN – NITROGEN – CARBON and OXYGEN. Magnesium binds them together. The structure of hemoglobin is the same, except for iron, and not magnesium, which binds the structure together. The Nobel Prize was awarded to scientists who discovered this similarity. Thus, consuming greens as a salutary effect on the blood. As I always like to see it, taking greens is like recharging the blood as we recharge cell phone credit. The following herbs have been found to dramatically help leukemia cases: Garlic, Olive Leaf Extract, Milk thistle, Licorice, Aloe Vera, Raspberry, Curcumin, Green tea, Ginseng Citrus immature peel (which kills leukemia cells). Hedyotis diffusa- the Chinese remedy reported to be positively effective in killing cancer cell. Hungarian cancer therapist Alexander Ferenezi,in 1950, carried out a study with 22 patients whose cancers where advanced and inoperateable. He added Beet root to their diet for three to four months. All but one of them recovered dramatically. These herbs are set to clean and recompose the blood apart from helping the cancerous cell to commit suicide (apoptosis). The Hungarian study with Beet root, replicated in other countries encourages the use of herbs in leukemia and other cancers. The role of the spleen cannot be underplayed. It is a quality control centre for the blood. Blood cells which fail to pass the test are broken down by macrophages, special defense (immune cells) in the spleen. Thus, if leukemia cells roam free in the blood, the spleen deserve a query. It may be weakened, though, by infections and the generative liver conditions, among other problems.There will still be time for a more comprehensive discussion of leukemia therapies NOW. Seun Babalola, here comes the sickle cell note…

Management of sickle cell anaemia condition

Treating this condition the natural way involves, as in all health challenges, an understanding of the causes and effects, and consistent efforts to check them. I hope the following explanations and suggestions will help the conditions discussed.

Explanations and suggestions

In sickle cell condition, the red blood cell is sickled, that is curved inwards from the edges or rumpled like rumpled, dry foliage.

A normal red blood cell, on the other hand, is flat like a coin.

In a rumpled state, the red blood does not enjoy maximum exposure to oxygen in the blood stream. Yet its job is to attract oxygen and take it to all cells for their metabolic and other living processes.

Deprived of oxygen, the body’s growth is stunted, the immune system functions sub-optimally, microbes overgrow in population, attack and damaged healthy and unhealthy cells. As it is to be expected, the sickle cells cannot adequately defend themselves and, so, do not live beyond about half the lifespan of a normal cell.

When the red blood cells die prematurely, they create many health challenges.

Even the small amounts of oxygen they can absorb and transport diminished in quantum.That is why there is pain (or cry for oxygen) throughout the body.

The bone marrow where red blood cells are produced, comes under pressure to make more red blood cells. Yet it doesn’t have enough oxygen to do this extra job. That, again, is why bone pain is common among sickle cell challenged person, especially during a crisis.

A large quantum of sickle red blood cells dying prematurely soon breaks down, releasing a large amount of all their components, especially bilirubin, the yellow pigment.

The liver has a duty to conjugate this heavy bilirubin load which can become poisonous to the system, especially the brain, if not promptly transform (conjugated) into less harmful substances. It is this heavy congestion of bilirubin in the liver that makes the liver becomes inflamed and painful. The spleens, too, may become inflamed and painful, soft and purple, it is vascular and lies in the upper left region of the abdomen. As a filter for the blood, it removes all old or malformed or damaged red blood cells.

There may be other implications of this crises.

SUGGESTIONS

The suggestion addresses the symptoms.

Since the red blood cells cannot absorb the required amount of oxygen, this can be introduced through the diet by way of food and food supplements.

Ready sources of oxygen in the food chain are chlorophyll rich foods. Chlorophyll is the green part of plants. It is now known as the ‘’blood’’ of the plant. As a matter of fact, four scientists won a Nobel Prize for showing that chlorophyll and the red of the human blood, the heamoglobin, have more–or–less the same structure, except for their central atoms.

The chlorophyll structure is …Carbon, Hydrogen, Nitrogen and Oxygen.The structure is held together by Magnesium. The heamoglobin structure is Carbon, Hydrogen, Nitrogen and Oxygen. The structure is held together by Iron.

Thus, when we consume deep green vegetables or their juices, the body will convert the chlorophyll plant blood to heamoglobin human blood by removing the magnesium central atom and replacing it with iron. The oxygen in this structure becomes available to oxygenate the human system short of oxygen. With this understanding, the health industry responded to sickle cell management by producing all sorts of green product for this purpose. I will mention only a few which includes:

(1)Wheatgrass (2) Barley grass (3) Alfalfa (4) Spirulina (5) Kale (6) Chlorella and proprietary green products such as splina liquid chlorophyll. Nowadays oxygen tablet or liquid juice are also available.

VITAMIN E

This vitamin helps the body to live on small oxygen supplies as if it has enough stock.

That is why mountain climbers who take Vitamin E food supplements hardly experience oxygen- deficiency on mountains where oxygen levels are low. When the mineral selenium is taken with vitamin E, vitamin E performs better. The better it is if grape seed extract is added to the list, being about 50 times more powerful than Vitamin E. When you purchase vitamin E, be sure to buy the natural (d-alpha) and not the cheaper dl-alpha which come from petroleum sources. Be sure, too that the d-alpha contains the full components of d-alphaTocopherols.

Shark liver oil

One of the important components of this oil is SQULENE. It helps the shark to survive in the depths where oxygen is low. Squalence is produced in the human skin to protect it against ultraviolet radiation from the sun. But the quantum produced diminishes with age. Squalene should help humans beset with low oxygen situations.

Antioxidants

Magnessium, Zinc, and Manganese, ditto are many green plants. Grape seed extract, coral calcium, Alpha lipoic Acid, Bilberry, orange peel etc. are also. The list is too long to mention.

The liver

The liver is easily inflamed and hurt, if not damaged, by sickle cell crises. To boost its capacity to respond to these crises, many liver protective and toning (strengthening) herbs may be added to the diet. My favorites are: (1) Eclipta Alba (2) Milk Thistle (3) Carquega. My favourite proprietary formulas are: Liver Health, Liver Essentially and Liver Balance. They promote bile flow. And bile mops and excretes bilirubin through the stool.

The Bone Marrow

Bone pain can be eased with the forgoing suggestions. Comfrey Root Tea improves bone health and curbs the pain. So does Yarrow tea which has an affinity for the bone marrow. Beet Root is also good. Comfrey root powder can be mixed with shea butter and used as a massage cream on the painful bone.

Diatom, also called Diatomaceous Health, is good too, especially as it is an alkaliniser and it has an affinity for the bone. As it strengthens connective tissue throughout the body, strengthening connective tissue in the bone marrow prevents the tearing which inflammation induces and of course, the pain which comes with tearing. The weapon in the hands of diatom is SILICA.

Silica is present also in Horsetail and stinging Nettle. But it accounts for between 92 and 96 percent of Diatom. Recently I asked a throat cancer patient to try it. She had a terribly ulcerated stomach, and fed through a tube in her stomach. Whenever she passed liquefied food through this tube, her stomach was literally on fire, but when she ground two tablet of zinc to powder and passed it down with water, the pain eased as the zinc supported the healing process. And any time she felt the pain was about to come up and she fed Diatom to the stomach, the pain disappeared outright.

CLUMPING

Gumming (clumping) of cells or agglutination is one of the problems faced by a sickle cell challenged person. Clumping slows blood circulation, and, thus, delays oxygen and nutrient delivery to the cells as well as waste or poison evacuation from them. During clumping episodes, the cells are, thus, starved and malnourished and left to live in a mesh of poison. Natural blood thinners’ free them from this peril. Some naturals include Onion and Garlic. They should be present always in the diet.

Kyolic garlic, a proprietary brand of garlic, is reported to be about 50 times more potent than natural garlic, having been specially aged for about 15 months. The proprietary product Curcumin 2000X is good for this condition.

Curcumin is anti-inflamating and helps all the inflammation caused by this challenge. The Cayenne present in Curcumin 2000X is reported to make it 2000 times more active than when curcumin is taken alone. Cayenne is a blood thinner and drives the blood to every nook and cranny of the body. Cayenne may be used on its own where curcumin 2000X is not readily available. I add cayenne to my corn portage (pap) and herbal drinks. Serrapeptase is another good blood thinner which solves blockages in the system. In the cell or tissue salt category of food supplement, Ferrum phosphate disbands all congestions, oxygenates the blood.

SUMMARY

In conclusion, the therapy goals are the following:

  •    Improvement of oxygen stock and delivery to the cells.
  •    Decongesting an overworked liver, reversing its inflammation and healing its injury but, above all, preventing those discomfitures by ensuring liver herbs are part of the daily diet.
  •    Protecting the bone marrow likewise.
  •    Preventing cell agglutination or thinning the blood where it has occurred.

   Elongating the lifespan of sickle red blood cells with the addition of antioxidants to the diet, as a way of preventing the occurrence of event and complication which form some of the scenarios of a sickle cell crisis.