Science fiction shows have long been popular, and one of the most popular was Star Trek. As with happens with any popular show, spoofs were also made to poke fun at it. One such spoof was a movie called Galaxy Quest.
In one scene of that spoof, the starship was trying to flee from an enemy, but not getting away. On the navigation panel was a button labeled “Turbo.” The captain ordered the helmsman to hold that button down. They sped away from the enemy initially, but then alarms started going off — the engines were overheating. But the enemy was still pursuing. Turbo was only to be used for short periods of time — you can guess the rest: the engines were almost destroyed by using an emergency measure for too long. They burned out the system.
You’ve likely heard of PTSD (post-traumatic stress syndrome), and may even know someone diagnosed with it. PTSD is all too common with those who have had horrific war experiences or have been in emergency response services: even after they return to normal life, the experiences haunt them, and they can’t settle down. They are exhausted, depressed, and emotionally drained, yet cannot rest. Fortunately most of us do not suffer with this malady. Or maybe we do, just a little.
Like any condition, PTSD has degrees of severity. When do we cross the line to where we even have a condition? When does the switch flip to “on”? We have our daily upsets, some of which are so minor that we forget them almost immediately. We reset and return to status quo. Or maybe we don’t completely, and then wonder why we are irritable or anxious. When the symptoms are severe enough, we take notice. Many of those symptoms come from the immune system trying to deal with the stress.
The immune system does not judge stress, it just responds. In rest mode, it is standing guard; but in the presence of stress, it swings into action. This is exactly what we want when foreign invaders attack, so that we are not destroyed by an infection getting out of control. Once the invaders have been conquered, the immune system settles back down into standby mode. This is also necessary, because the warriors of this system are geared to inflame and destroy pathogens and even other normal cells if they remain in attack mode too long. Fortunately they don’t remain on the attack, because they accomplish their mission and destroy the invaders. But what if the stress is not due to foreign invaders, but internal, ongoing mental stress? In that case, they may be stuck in attack mode, and that means we are going to suffer chronic inflammation, have our immune systems diverted to wars that they cannot win, and become susceptible to all sorts of disease.
This can build on itself: the overworked immune system tries to ramp up even more as diseases develop, creating a negative cycle. Inflammation has set in, and the damage caused needs immune cell workers to go clean up the damage. This is why inflammation precedes disease. If inflammation persists, the immune system doesn’t get a break, and instead is called upon to do more.
While the immune system is either in rest or attack mode, it only responds where it is needed. Local inflammation is appropriate for wound repair, where healing is needed in a specific area. But chronic stress affects the whole body, so the immune system can’t limit itself to a locality. When chronic stress hits, it affects the whole body over a prolonged time period. This combination may lead to autoimmune diseases, where the immune system breaks down under a heavy, unending load.
Maybe PTSD is more common than we realize, but at too low of a level to trigger a diagnosis. Rather we just call it chronic stress. But it’s enough to activate the immune system and keep it revved up. Studying how and why the immune system triggers gives us insight into autoimmune system diseases, including the worst of the lot: cancer.
Signaling a switch
Any reversible change in cell function is an epigenetic response. The genetic codes for both behaviors must already exist for a cell to switch between them as needed. Immune system triggering is epigenetic, and is like a switch, turning on or off as the cell switches modes. These changes are in response to signals the cells get due to the environment surrounding them. In cases of foreign attack, circulating blood cells won’t get a signal unless there is something about the foreign cells that they can recognize. To get an “intruder alert”, specific proteins have to hit the immune cell receptors for them to know that there is something foreign that must be expelled. These may come from the foreign cells themselves, which also live by protein signaling and give off unique proteins in the process, or the foreign cells must be tagged or marked with a protein that is a signal to the immune cell receptors. The signal then triggers the epigenetic response, and the immune cells activate.
Researchers can detect the epigenetic switch by changes in cell behavior. Published in Science Immunology, researchers from the German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg, Germany conducted animal studies in which they modified blood cells by removing a protein regulator known as USP22. Without USP22, the blood cells exhibited emergency behavior without any infection for the immune system to fight. USP22 is a deubiquitinase, which removes ubiquitin, which is a tag of undesirable proteins that signal the immune system to attack. Thus the animals’ immune systems were seeing enemies everywhere. When infection was introduced, they fought it off more quickly because their immune response was already in emergency mode.
But that mode is unsustainable for long periods. Emergency mode is for emergencies only.
Immune system paranoia
Chronic stress is a problem of “seeing enemies everywhere” — the immune system is constantly being sent danger signals as it circulates throughout the body. This promotes risk of blood cancers, lymphoid cancers, and tumors. In a study published in Nature Clinical Practice Oncology, researchers from the University College London, London, U.K. state, “The results of 165 studies indicate that stress-related psychosocial factors are associated with higher cancer incidence in initially healthy populations.” They concluded that circulatory and tumor-producing cancers are promoted by stress. This makes good sense, but this realization has been slow in coming to the medical community. Published in Frontiers in Immunology, researchers from the Medical University of Gda?sk, Gda?sk, Poland lead off with this statement: “Autoimmune disease results from the immune response against self-antigens, while cancer develops when the immune system does not respond to malignant cells. Thus, for years, autoimmunity and cancer have been considered as two separate fields of research that do not have a lot in common.” They explain that the discoveries of immune system checkpoints and various signaling pathways link the two together and have changed the way research is considering the immune system and cancer development.
This all ties together. Chronic stress constantly alarms the immune system, putting it into its own form of PTSD. Then, without proper enemies to fight, it causes inflammation throughout the body. This overworks the immune system further, diverts its attention, and keeps it stuck in emergency mode. The epigenetic responses that turn it on can also cause it to develop cancerous responses, either within the system itself, or anywhere in the body that it contacts. This means that chronic stress has to stop, the system has to reset, or disease has an open door. The research studies can pick apart the various signaling proteins and metabolic pathways that are involved, but basically this is a very simple concept: an overworked immune system means risk of negative epigenetic choices being made by your cells, any of which may take downward steps toward cancer or other diseases.
Do you need a system reset?
Dr. Nemec’s Review
What are the top three stimulators of the immune system?
Number 3 — Pathogens. This includes bacteria, viruses, fungi, parasites and cancer cells.
Number 2 — Food. You eat usually three or more times a day. If you eat food that is standard American cooked these meals are highly inflammatory. They set off tremendous immune reactions. One of these reactions is called digestive leukocytosis. This means because the heat of the cooking has denatured the proteins, oxidize the fats and glycated the carbohydrates each one of these categories sets off immune reactions. This is like being exposed to strong viruses three times a day or more every day of your life. This is quite an immune overload.
Number 1 — Stress Programs. This falls into two categories: subconscious stress and conscious stress. Subconscious stress programs are written on the hard drive of the brain. These are the most damaging because they are continuous programs playing all the time in the background and you’re not even aware of it. Have you ever driven from your house to a very familiar destination that you’ve travelled 100 times or more? Do you notice that there’s no thinking in driving: you actually can be talking to someone on the phone and not even realize that you were driving and you have arrived at your destination. This was without any conscious thought. The subconscious program of how to drive from your house to that location is automatic: it does not require any conscious effort. This is why subconscious stress programs can be so detrimental — they are continuous and you’re not even aware of them. These are stress programs that were formed early in childhood: when you were exposed to and taught by an emotionally charged and sometimes toxic mental and emotional environment, you developed stress programs as a protective mechanism. We are all unfortunately affected by these stress programs because they secrete inflammatory stress molecules, and the immune system responses continually. If you were to continually stimulate the immune system, you would produce first inflammatory disorders throughout the entire body — this is known as autoimmune patterns — and eventually inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. Inflammatory diseases are the majority of what causes diagnoses including cancer, heart disease, gastrointestinal disease, neurological disease, strokes, dementia, including Alzheimer’s and even depression, anxiety, and emotional imbalance. All this is the byproduct of chronic inflammation, and chronic inflammation is produced first by subconscious stress programs (ones that you’re not aware of), second by conscious stress programs (these you are aware of: people that have done you wrong and you still carry an energy towards them), third by the food you eat and the drink you consume, and forth by the pathogens you are exposed to, especially in a weakened, inflammatory immune state.
In 40 years of treating patients, one pattern is clearly seen no matter what the symptom, condition, or disease is: it begins with chronic inflammation, which then in time turns into each individual named diagnosis.
Unfortunately, in conventional medicine, they state the diagnosis like it’s some thing unique and special and put you in a special category. You are a cancer patient. You are an autoimmune patient. You are a Alzheimer’s patient. You are a diabetic patient. You are a heart disease patient. For each of these named conditions, they prescribe medication and potential surgery. The problem with this approach: it works really good in an emergency, but it is not addressing the cause at all, it’s just treating way, way, way down stream from the original problem.
What are the causes of every original problem?
Subconscious and conscious stress programs, diet and lifestyle are the most major causes.
Pathogens like bacteria and viruses only become a problem because the patient is already in an inflammatory, weakened state from the stored stress programs and the diet and lifestyle. All of these are continual stressors, so they produce continual inflammation, which eventually burns out the system and makes it open to every disease.
So what’s the answer?
It’s how we’ve been treating patients for the last 40 years. With our Nemec New Medicine Protocol®, we do 3-D brain imaging to find out exactly what areas of the brain the stored stress programs are located in, what area of the body those areas of the brain are affecting, then we do very specific treatment therapies to completely remove all sources of inflammation, and then we retest to make sure all subconscious and conscious stress programs are clear and all diet and lifestyle changes have been customized to the unique genetic and immune profile of each patient. In doing this we put out the inflammatory fire completely. This is like a breath of fresh air to a chronically ill patient. When that inflammation leaves, they feel at least 10 years younger, but most importantly, the disease heals and it makes no difference what the name of the disease is — it all comes from the same source: chronic inflammation. Remove the inflamers and you heal every disease. This is the only approach to take, unless you’re in an emergency acute situation — then you use emergency care until you can completely address the source of these inflamers.
Isn’t it time for you to get to the root cause of your inflammation? Do not wait until you develop a major life-threatening disease; but if you’ve already developed one, there is hope — just get rid of the inflammation sources and the disease will naturally heal just as naturally as if you cut your finger. It always heals because the body is always trying to heal. You just need to help it by removing the causes of inflammation.
Here are the ways we can help you in your health journey:
- Outpatient Comprehensive Teaching and Treatment Program-has the most benefit of teaching, treatment, live classes and personalized coaching. This program has the most contact with Dr. Nemec with 3- 6 month programs that can be turned into a regular checking and support program for life. This is our core program that has helped so many restore their health and maintain that restoration for years.
- Inpatient Comprehensive Teaching and Treatment Program-is our four-week intensive inpatient program for those that are not in driving distance, usually over 4 hour drive. This is the program that is an intensive jumpstart with treatment, teaching, live classes and coaching designed for all our international patients along with those in the US that do not live in Illinois. This program is very effective especially when combined with our new membership program support.
- Stay at Home Program-is offered to continental US patients who cannot come to Total Health Institute but still want a more personal, customized plan to restore their health. This program also includes our Learn Membership Program.
- Membership Program is our newest program offered for those that want to work on their health at a high level and want access to the teaching at Total Health Institute along with the Forums: both Dr. Nemec’s posts and other members posting. And also, to have the chance to get personalized questions answered on the conference calls which are all archived in case you miss the call. The Membership Program has 3 levels to choose from: Learn, Overcome and Master. The difference is at the Overcome and Master levels you received one on one calls with Dr. Nemec personalizing your program for your areas of focus.