Monday, September 3, 2012

You're invited to join me on my journey...

I am defective.

That's what the tests read...which is really probably no surprise to you in that a) you know me and it's easy to see I'm not quite normal and b) most people are.

This summer I went searching for some answers for my health.  I have been sleeping very poorly for a couple of years, and have experienced increased exhaustion, flat, at times down moods.  I knew from experience that my family physician would be happy to slap an anti-depression med on me.  In truth I was ready for that if that's what my true diagnosis was, but I was in search for a deeper diagnosis so I went to see a highly recommended Naturopathic Doctor.

After forms, questions about family history, health history, diet, excersize, etc I gave 11 vials of blood for testing.

The results were that I have a genetic mutation.  The neat name for this mutation is MTHFR.  I have two copies of the 1298 gene.  This means that I got one copy from each parent, meaning both of my parents, of course, also have MTHFR.

If you are related to me at all, there is a good chance that you have at least one MTHFR gene.

Studies show about 40% of people have at least one gene, and interestingly, 90% of children with Autism have MTHFR.

MTHFR, in short, prevents a persons' body from methylating (or processing) vitamin B.  This break down causes a body to hold onto toxins, can block seratonin from releasing into the brain, amongst other things.   Of course vitamin B is the energy vitamin, so I am also greatly lacking energy.

Other symptoms of MTHFR (and not limited to):

Hair Loss
Memory Loss
Stroke/Heart Attack
Cleft Lip
Spina Bifita
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Irritable Bowel Syndrome

A teeny bit of history for you, MTHFR was discovered through the Human Genome project in the early 90's. If you haven't heard of this diagnosis, you're probably in the majority. I recently went to a seminar on MTHFR and there were many physicians in attendance who are just learning about it and how to treat it.

 A certain Dr. Rawlins (OB) in the area has taken on the study and educating others about MTHFR, as treatment for MTHFR saved his son's life a few years back.   It seems to me that locally there is a lot of educating and information on MTHFR available, but not so much in other regions.

So now I've plunged into the simple treatment for this defect, I take methylfolate (Deplin and Metanx are prescribed supplements, often covered by insurance) and methylated B vitamins (not 'regular' B) and I'm feeling like a new person. I don't need to nap every day! I'm not dragging anymore and best of all I don't feel like I'm fighting off a little raincloud over my mind and heart anymore! Thanks to these and another supplement that has helped to regulate my cortisole levels I'm sleeping all night...for nearly a month.

I wanted to share this information with you in the event that you may be struggling in one or more of these areas. Anti depressants are very helpful, but if you can take a supplement that will alleviate the first problem, rather than just fixing it, it may help you. I know a few of you out there with fybromyalgia, and oh, that some of you might feel better, even a little. (If you have fibromyalgia, please listen to this woman's story) Again, your physician may not be familiar with MTHFR, you may need to research it and bring information to them and ask for testing and treatment.  I would love to share more with you, please comment or email me at to discuss what I'm learning more. This has been a pivotal discovery for me. I'm feeling so much better. I hope this could help you, too. To learn more, look at these :


Cathy said...

Thanks for posting this, A.

I felt like I was reading about myself when you were describing yourself!

I might need to look into this...I think our insurance covers Naturopathic...

Glad you're feeling so much better!

Melissa said...

Thank you for sharing. My sister in law, Dellaina, directed me to your blog. I was just (yesterday) diagnosed with MTHFR. Of course, I had never heard of it. It is a huge relief to see that there are others, before me, that have started on this path to new wellness. I am hopeful that the methyl folate that I have been prescribed will help me as much as it has you. Thank you again for this information.