Current Trends In Nitric Oxide, KMUD, 2015

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    Raymond Peat, Ph.D.

    Current Trends in Nitric Oxide


    KMUD, 16-10-2015​
    [justify](Transcribed by Giraffe, verified by Burtlancast)

    HD: Andrew Murray
    HD2: Sarah Johanneson Murray
    RP: Ray Peat
    SE: Sound engineer


    HD: Ray,would you just describe your academic and professional background and then we’ll get going on the subject.

    RP: I did my master's degree in humanities at the University of Oregon and then went back years later in biology for a PhD, and intended to study brain biology, but quickly shifted to reproductive aging physiology. So I concentrated on the biochemistry of the steroid hormones in relation to aging, largely.

    HD: OK. I guess I’ll just open up the show by demonstrating some of the things that if people would search online, and be, for want of a better word, victim of bad advertising on what they would find out about nitric oxide. Unfortunately the internet is rife with lots of untruth and misconceptions as well as very genuine and good research to counter some of the accusations. But nitric oxide, as what I've seen, is touted mainly for helping the immune system. They mention it to be used to regulate blood pressure, to improve sleep. And then there is the things that it's mainly advertised for, which is for endurance and strength, and for body building and sexual performance-enhancing, and also for helping gastric motility.
    So Dr. Peat, given that we produce nitric oxide naturally doesn't mean to say it's always a good thing. Like adrenaline, too much of that is a bad thing. But given that we produce it naturally, what useful effect does it have, and why does it have so many negative effects? Why should it be avoided ?

    HD2: And also why did they tell nitric oxide to be used for all those conditions, when it isn't true? Why were they twisting the truth?

    RP: My dissertation in 1972 focused on estrogen, but I saw that the effects of estrogen where indistinguishable from effects of x-rays and aging and oxygen deprivation. And how that works is, that it changes the oxidative enzyme function (cytochrome c oxidase). And it was known that smog produces nitric oxide. It wasn't known that it occurred naturally in the body until the late 80s. But the effects of nitric oxide in smog were known to inhibit or damage that same respiratory enzyme. And at the time I was studying estrogen, it was known that carbon monoxide and cyanide also block the effect of oxygen in the cell. And so, no-one really thought about what nitric oxide was doing to the cell, except when they were exposed to a lot of smog.
    As soon as it was discovered that it is produced in the body, a series of publications over the next six or seven years, up until the late 90s, identified the harm that it did in the various tissues. For example, several papers clearly showed how it...


    ..inflammation or stress increasing nitric oxide, damages the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. So, it's a major cause of diabetes, regardless of the particular person's history leading to diabetes. Not only damaging the cells in the pancreas, but they were seeing similar damage to every tissue they looked at, which seemed logical since it was a free radical, analogous to cyanide and carbon monoxide in its function in the cell. But then someone noticed that nitric oxide causes vasodilation during arousal and erection. And Viagra came on the scene with tremendous amount of funding for research.

    HD: This is about 15 years ago now.

    RP: Yeah, 1997 I think it was. And suddenly all of the bad stuff was forgotten, and everyone wanted to find out the wonder curative effects of the drug that could improve virility. And very soon after it came out, I started hearing from people who were suffering things such as diabetes from taking the virility pill. And that got me interested very early after the Viagra came on the market. But it was fitting right into the things that I was already interested in.

    HD: There is quite a positive association, isn't it, between cardiac arrest and Viagra's use. I think it killed quite a few people at this point in time.

    RP: Well, it's probably killing more people than are being identified, because nitric oxide is produced in any stressed cell or tissue; and it decreases the function of the tissue by blocking the energy production. So it creates a vicious circle, the same way too much estrogen (or stress of any sort) can start a cycle of energy loss, increased production of the stress mediators, including nitric oxide, exciting the tissue, blocking the energy of the tissue, and leading the cell to die.

    HD2: So amongst all the things taunting that nitric oxide are good for, is there any thread of truth to these statements?

    RP: Of the things you mentioned, it actually does one of those things, which is to make muscles grow. But that's one of the things that Szent-Györgyi and Otto Warburg understood 50 years ago.

    HD2: Is that because of inflammation?

    RP: In the absence of oxygen, life can't do anything but grow and divide. So anything that blocks the cytochrome c oxidase, blocking oxidative metabolism, tends to stimulate cell division. Because that's all life can do on the lactic acid producing cycle. And experiments both with nitric oxide supplement, or creating the condition such as cutting off the blood supply to cause muscle tissue to produce its own excess nitric oxide, they found that it stimulated the multiplication of cells in the muscle. The satellite cells surrounding the muscle fiber itself multiply under the influence of nitric oxide, or simply hypoxia leading to lactic acid production.

    HD2: So it's a very inflammatory process even though they are describing it as something that is wonderful; you’ll increase your muscles if you take supplements that are precursors for nitric oxide production.

    RP: Yeah. They found that you could cause muscle enlargement and growth just by putting a tourniquet on. Or if you combined mild exercise with a tourniquet...

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    HD: ... because of the oxygen deprivation?

    RP: Yes. Really big muscle growth, when we are injuring it. But that’s the basic thing: that cells divide like cancer when they don't have the energy to do what they should do.

    HD: So it's kind a of negative response to that stimulation.

    RP: Yeah. So any time you injure a tissue, whether it's in the brain, or heart, or blood vessel, pancreas,... whatever; there are stem cells (the satellite cells in muscles are probably just the local stem cells, which might be replenished from bone marrow, for example: but anyway, they function as stem cells). And so anytime a tissue is injured, the lack of oxygen temporarily stimulates the multiplication of stem-like cells which have the potential of regenerating the tissue.

    HD: So it's a natural process that would happen to stimulate cell growth. But they are twisting it in saying that it's something good (that it increases muscle growth) ?

    RP: Well, it's always a local, more or less, microscopic process when it’s natural. But if you flood the system, hoping to grow all of your muscles bigger, then you're also providing it to your brain, immune system, gonads; everything is being in effect deprived of oxygen.

    HD2: So drugs that increase nitric oxide would be classed as carcinogens, then?

    RP: Yeah. In fact, that’s starting to be recognized, that its a very basic factor in promoting cancer at development, growth and spreading.

    HD: Getting back to some of the things that they say (nitric oxide supplements are beneficial for). And actually it’s never the nitric oxide that you get in a capsule or a tablet anyway, is it ? It's the precursor. It’s the amino acid precursor, that nitric oxide ‘s manufactured from. Is there any truth to the vasodilatory, the artery dilating effects that would supposedly help people with blood pressure? I mean is that just completely erroneous science too?

    RP: No, it does that. Nitroglycerine was used for a long time to open up heart arteries, and you do increase the flow of blood by relaxing the arterials. The trouble is that if you increase it beyond temporary dilation, it's going to start the damaging process of increasing collagen formation, cell multiplication, and so on. So that you can get a momentary effect from sniffing nitroglycerin, for example. But as a chronic thing, or a systemic thing, it's not at all good. In fact it ages. In a chronic situation, for example where your intestine is being irritated (irritable bowel syndrome for example) or just mild digestive problems, you absorb both nitric oxide and endotoxin. And the endotoxin increases the production of nitric oxide everywhere. And in the blood vessels, the increased and chronic effect of nitric oxide is to promote thickening, and atherosclerosis, and hardening of the arteries.

    HD: So in fact it's actually worsening the condition you are taking it for. If you are taking it for blood pressure or...

    RP: Yea, the momentary effect-over minutes or hours-can be helpful. Like if you have a constricted area, the relaxation (locally in that particular artery) opens up, let’s the blood keep flowing. But when you do that systemically, all you are doing is adding to the chronic inflammation, stress and degeneration of the arteries, heart and all the other organs.

    HD: So you’re saying the body should be producing a little bit of nitric oxide in that constricted artery?

    RP: When you have a local [constriction], like a pinch of an artery, the cells sense that they aren't getting enough oxygen. And in reaction of the stress, nitric oxide is produced locally, opens it up, lets the blood through the stressed point. So it's like a local regulatory process, and shouldn't ever be a systemic generalized process for treating high blood pressure.

    HD: It's like when someone takes nitroglycerin ?

    RP: Yeah. All of what it's doing is relieving a momentary pinch in the heart. Which can be good for the heart I guess. But systemically, it’s... For example, one of the things that it does is to increase aldosterone, the adrenal salt-regulating steroid that produces inflammation and fibrosis as a side effect.

    HD: Aldosterone is also implicated for blood pressure regulation, isn't it?

    RP: Yeah. Too much aldosterone and you get high blood pressure. So the side effect of chronic nitric oxide can be exactly the opposite of what's been promoted.

    HD: Let me just outline for people that are listening.. and I may be wrong here, I usually find information (or I have from previous knowledge information) that you uncover fairly often to be incomplete or actually not quite correct... But in terms of nitric oxide production, am I right in thinking that there are three major sites: the endothelia (inside the vessel walls), a neuronal synthase (from nerve cells), and the inducible form. Is that correct or are there any other methods?

    RP: Yeah. It's generally the inducible form which can occur apparently in any cell, including nerves and ...

    HD: ... in response to inflammation ? Or damage ? Or..?

    RP: Yeah. Any stress increases the inducible one.

    HD: A person who I was speaking with earlier, who had amongst other things, one the main symptoms that they had was inflammation of both kidneys. And they had ureteral obstruction, retrograde urinary flow backing up into the kidneys producing a chronic or rather an acute kidney inflammation. And what I read in one of the PubMed articles was that the glomerulus, which is a functionary unit of the kidney, is unique in that the vascular networks have the potential themselves to express several of the called iso-forms of nitric oxide synthase, and can produce quite an amount of this in response to injury.
    In terms of the realistic inhibition of nitric oxide, I only found two compounds. One of them (Agmatine) I found advertised by Sigma Aldrich. (it's a fairly big - one of the biggest I think in America - chemical firm that will be charging a lot of money for a five milligrams sample). The other one, apparently, is almost as effective, but I think it has a slightly different mechanism, and that is Aminoguanidine. And if you look at that online (Aminoguanidine), it is actually sold as a blocker of the glycation process whereby sugars and proteins form these glycation end-products that are damaging...
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    RP: That was it’s first recognized effect. But it turns out that it’s achieving that by blocking nitric oxide, which leads to the oxidation damage to all of the blood vessels.

    HD: So is Aminoguanidine as good as Agmatine ?

    RP: Yea, there’s another one that’s just a variation of Aminoguanidine, called Agmatine, which occurs in foods, meat, fish, mushrooms, for example.

    HD: Would you get enough of this product from...

    RP: No. It's probably helpful, somewhat. The weightlifters who were using nitric oxide to puff up their muscles heard something about Agmatine, and they started using it. But then the word went around that it's inhibiting nitric oxide. So i think there’s some confusion, currently.

    HD: Do you think that using Aminoguanidine as a competitive inhibitor of nitric oxide would be a reasonable approach to the kind of systemic inflammation that you find in, say, rheumatoid arthritis patients?

    RP: I think it probably is. But I think there are safer things, that have been studied more. Aminoguanidine has been known chemically for over a hundred years I think, but it just hasn't been researched as a medical treatment enough that I would feel very confident of that. The safest inhibitors happen to be niacinamide, which has two or three different routes for inhibiting it, aspirin, which has at least two or three (at least) direct and indirect ways of inhibiting it, progesterone, which is partly acting by blocking estrogen's increase of nitric oxide.

    HD: Interesting, because you’ve mentioned niacinamide, and this is the compound you are talking about most for lowering blood sugar in type 1 and 2 diabetic patients.

    RP: Yea, it does just about everything protective. It protects nerve cells against nitric oxide’s damaging effect. And one other pretty safe inhibitor is methylene blue.

    HD: Yes. I’m starting to see more of that compound come up on PubMed articles for quite a few different approaches to disease. I remember seeing that also as a chemical that was advertised at Sigma-Aldrich's website. I don't think it was too expensive either. So, methylene blue would certainly be a reasonable approach. If somebody had chronic inflammation, that would most likely be due to excessive nitric oxide production in that tissue.

    RP: Yea, first I would try aspirin, niacinamide and progesterone. It has the most physiological...

    HD: What kind of dosage do you think would be a reasonable suggestion for somebody who wanted to try either niacinamide or aspirin?

    RP: Aspirin, if you take vitamin K, is safe up to several grams a day. But usually, with two doses of 500 mg you get pretty good systemic protection. And vitamin K, incidentally, is in several ways helping to hold down nitric oxide production.

    HD: And how about niacinamide?

    RP: It's probably safe up to a thousand milligrams a day. But I only had experience seeing people take about three or four doses of 125 mg each dose. So, a total of two to five hundred milligrams a day can do really dramatic things for curing nerve degeneration and such.

    HD: We got our first caller. Let's take this first caller and see where we go with this one. Caller you are on the air?

    Caller: Hi, I have a question. Could Dr. Peat could briefly discuss what is cystic fibrosis, and what are the practical strategies for overcoming that?

    RP: I've never worked with anyone that had it, except some people suspecting they might have it. And it turned out they were just very hypothyroid. The function of the adrenals can cause you to leak chloride. So that you have extreme saltiness of your skin (high chloride content). And that is often used to diagnose cystic fibrosis. But just correcting the thyroid and the adrenal function in the people that I have seen, turned out not to have cystic fibrosis. Just a bad reaction to low thyroid function.

    Caller: OK, thank you.

    HD: Thanks for your call. I think we have another caller on the air. Let's take this. Where are you from, caller?

    RP: Hi, this is Amy from New York.

    HD: Amy, from New York. Welcome to the show.

    Caller: Thanks for this excellent show. I had a couple of questions for Dr. Peat. I am studying a breathing method that's supposed to increase carbon dioxide levels. And they talk about always breathing through the nose. And I was worried a little about whether that would increase my nitric oxide levels ? Because you are always breathing through the nose ?

    RP: No, anything that irritates your membranes will cause... If you get a runny nose from something you ate, for example, that increases the nitric oxide in your nose. So you want to avoid inflammatory things in your food or atmosphere because you do get local and systemic nitric oxide from any inflammatory thing. But breathing trough your nose itself doesn't contribute anything to that local production. When you breathe through your nose, especially if you have a good long nose, you have better retention of carbon dioxide. The dead space between the air sack in your lung and the outside world... Some of the Buteyko people breathe through an eight inch tube to extend the pathway. But the idea of having a good long nose is that it extends the dead space so you can keep a higher concentration of CO2.

    Caller: OK.

    HD: I find, snorkeling does the same thing. Because your are extending your nose.

    RP: Swimming under water. Just holding your breath.

    Caller: I have one more question, but it's off-topic.

    HD: Go ahead.
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    Caller: You mentioned that it often takes 4 years or even longer to get rid of the unsaturated fat stored in the body ?

    RP: That's for a complete exchange. But you can see a decrease as soon as you change your diet. But it’s gradual, over a period of years.

    Caller: And we do have a preference to burn saturated fats. This is a cleaner burning fat. You mentioned a study that found that pigs that wore sweaters they ended up with larger stores of saturated fats than pigs that weren't wearing sweaters.

    RP: A biochemist actually did that. It's just a demonstration that the production of unsaturated fats is a defense against cold because saturated fats harden at low temperature. So if you grow corn or soybeans in the tropics where it it's always 85 to 95 degree, they will produce fairly saturated fats. And fish in the Amazon river have close to the saturation of butter in their fat.

    Caller: Do you think that's a viable strategy for people ? For example in cold climates, that they want to lose as much of their stored unsaturated fats as quickly as they can. Would that be a safe way, too?

    RP: Keeping your arm and legs warm is very important for your systemic metabolism. But the pig fat was basically deriving from a starting corn or soy fat, and the pigs, if they’re cold, extend it to make the highly unsaturated long-chain [fats] with five or six unsaturated bonds, rather than two or three. When you synthesize unsaturated fats from sugar or starch they are going to be pretty safe, we will make -9 fats based on the Mead acid, which are much less unstable than the fish-oil type.

    Caller: Oh, I see it changed the new stored fat, but it didn't change the fat burning preference on those pigs, the existing fat stores?

    RP: Keeping your body temperature up does help you oxidize fats safely.

    Caller: When you said that about the cold pigs having much worse fats stored: that reminds me of... Have you heard of this brown fat and these guys that go into freezers and take cold showers and things, and they try to increase their stores of brown fat. The reason they do that is that it burns off all of their white fat.

    RP: I think keeping your thyroid function up is better, because the cold activates a variety of stress hormones that cause some side effects, besides of just getting rid of the fat. To oxidize your fats while at rest, while having a good resting metabolic rate and high body temperature is the safest way to handle them, rather than increase the stress to increase the fat burning.

    Caller: OK. Well thank you very much.

    HD: You are welcome. I think we have another caller on the line, so let's take this next caller and find out... Where are you from caller?

    Caller: I am from Madison, Wisconsin.

    HD: Welcome to the show. What's your question.

    Caller: My first question was that, I have been taking T4. It's working really well for me, but I get some eye-pain sometimes in the process of titrating it.

    HD: So what was your question? Whether or not that is normal or that is ...?

    Caller: Is the eye pain a normal part of the titration process?

    HD: When you say titration do you mean you just take in small doses, gradually increasing the dose, or...?

    Caller: I started on like 5 to 7 mcg and then up to 7 and up to 12, and I responded really well to it, but it seems like I get a little bit of eye-pain.

    HD: We are talking about T3 now?

    Caller: Oh, I am sorry. T4.

    HD: Beg your pardon, OK. So Dr. Peat, that's a very small amount of T4. The caller is asking whether or not you've ever heard of any relationship to eye-pain.

    RP: No, I haven't. But I would back off on the T4. If your liver isn't effectively converting it to T3, it can have an anti-thyroid effect by accumulating, turning off your pituitary. And your liver normally is where you get most of your active thyroid hormone. So if your liver isn't doing that, you can accumulate so much T4 it has stress-activating action.

    HD: Do you think it would be better for this person if they wanted to try the active hormone T3?

    RP: Yeah, I think it's always better to use the combination in the traditional way. Or if you are, for some reason, in a hurry or think you have a very bad liver, then small amounts of the active T3 can be done safely.

    HD: A lot of problems with doctors prescribing that T4 is, that when someone is low thyroid and they take T4, their livers usually aren't active enough to convert the T4 into the active T3. Because T4 on its own doesn't have any action at all. It doesn't do anything. It has to be converted to T3. And if you take enough T4 you gonna turn off your brain's production of stimulating the thyroid gland (TSH) which naturally produces about one part T3 to four parts T4. So that's why taking the natural glandular ratio of 1:4 of T3 to T4 is what Dr. Peat is recommending.

    RP: In the 1940s, when drug companies synthesized thyroxin, they tested it on male medical students and said, "It work's just like real thyroid."

    HD: That's T4, thyroxine.

    RP: Yea, T4. But the thing is that women with high estrogen compared to men always have a more sluggish liver. And women are the ones who especially...
    The 24-year old medical students seldom have liver problems. But a 40-year old female very often has a more sluggish liver so that thyroxine or T4 is very often causing problems in women.

    HD: Right. Because of the estrogen they are subjected to at that age has that competitive inhibition?
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    HD2: And actually the T4 can make low thyroid people's problems even worse if they don't convert it into T3. It actually increases adrenaline and makes the person feel worse than they did before they took it.

    RP: One of the effects of good thyroid function is to lower nitric oxide. And nitric oxide, contrary to the advertising, can increase pressure inside your eye. And so, hypothyroidism can create enough nitric oxide to cause symptoms such as hardening of the eye, increasing the pressure.

    Caller: OK, thanks. I was wondering, maybe ... I was switching over from cortisol to thyroid and maybe my eye was running low on energy or something.

    RP: I couldn't understand..

    HD: The caller said he was switching, he was coming off of cortisol, and trying to go on to thyroid. And he was wondering if his eye was running out of energy.

    RP: Well, cortisol increases the pressure in the eye. So it's possible that you were still producing too much cortisol relative to the protective pregnenolone and progesterone and such.

    Caller: Interesting. I have another question is that OK?

    HD: Yea, go ahead.

    Caller: I was wondering what percentage of popular lab tests are fraudulent or useless ? I had a TSH test, and I was taking thyroid. And I stopped, like about a week before the test. And my doctor said that that my TSH was normal. But when I went off the thyroid... I started getting like boils on my scalp, and other problems. And I was curious how many of the tests out there don't have very much value ?

    RP: I think the main problem is that doctors are taught that the TSH normal range is something like 0.4 to 5.0. But that number has been decreasing. The American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists has lowered it to 0.3 to 3.0. And a population of healthy people without thyroid cancer or other thyroid problems, they average 0.4 TSH or less without taking a thyroid supplement.

    HD: Meaning that if you are anything over 1 or 1.5, or getting anything closer to 2, you definitely seem like you would benefit from using the hormone.

    Caller: I think I was at 3.7 or something.

    HD: Yea, that would be outside of the range according to the lowered advised figures that have been issued.

    HD: And isn't it correct, Dr. Peat, that while someone might be taking T4 and not really converting it much to T3, their TSH would still lower?

    RP: Yea, and the stress hormones will lower it too. So you can't really diagnose anything by TSH alone, even though that’s how some doctors do it.

    HD: Especially when someone who is low thyroid. They are usually running on excessive adrenaline. And excessive adrenaline will lower the TSH and give you a false positive, rather than a false negative.

    RP: And high cortisol lowers it. And also at the same time causes the liver to turn thyroxin into rT3, which interferes even more than thyroxin with the active T3 function.

    HD: It blocks the real T3 from actually doing anything.

    Caller: That's interesting.

    HD: I thank you... Do you have anything else to say. I am sorry, I don't want to cut you off.

    Caller: Are his books still available?

    HD: Dr. Peat?

    RP: They have been converted to electronic form and we are going to figure out how to make them available very soon electronically.

    Caller: OK. Thank you very much, Dr. Peat, and also thank you herb doctors very much. I appreciate you a lot.

    HD2: Your are welcome, thank you for your call.

    HD: Do we have anything else on hold? [The number....] We are talking with Dr. Raymond Peat today about nitric oxide and its popular use for body-building and for male enhancement, amongst other things. And how damaging nitric oxide is. And how much information and research there is to show that it's actually more carcinogenic than anything else.
    Talking along the lines of the carcinogen. I saw articles that were demonstrating that nitric oxide was responsible for damaging DNA. And that's how they could directly implicate it in being a carcinogen.

    RP: Yeah. Just several years ago radiation biologists were seeing that cells which were hit by X-rays or gamma-rays emitted something which would cause apparent radiation damage in the neighborhood. So you could take the irradiated cells out of the culture dish, put new cells in, and they acted as if they have been irradiated.
    And nitric oxide turned out to be a major transmitter of that effect. So it's like you are being irradiated. You do produce a lot of nitric oxide, and it spreads to adjoining cells. So anything that sparks the inflammation tends to spread the nitric oxide which not only breaks the strands of DNA, but it also changes the methylation. So that the whole control system for expressing DNA in your chromosomes is altered under a chronic excess of nitric oxide.

    HD: Okay, I hold you there a moment, Dr. Peat. We have one person on hold and another coming in. Let's start with by next caller. Caller where are you from?

    Caller: Eureka.

    HD: Eureka. Go ahead, and what's your question.

    Caller: I wondered what alternatives to blood pressure medicines?

    RP: If you look at the symptoms of chronic hypothyroidism, hypertension is one of
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    the prominent things. A very large proportion of the people who think they have a high blood pressure problem are simply hypothyroid. The TSH itself, which rises when you are hypothyroid-even within the normal range-it's increasing your various stress hormones and increasing your blood pressure. So TSH is a pro-inflammatory factor and one of the factors causing hypertension. So you wanna keep that low just for general health.

    HD2: So caller you could ask your doctor for a test of TSH: and if it is above 0.4, then perhaps you can think about taking a thyroid supplement.

    HD: OK, I think we have another caller on the line. Let's take this next caller.
    [... caller's question about contact details skipped]

    SE: We had that one person calling in and ask about COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). He was diagnosed. Any information about...?

    HD: Dr. Peat, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease? There was a caller who left a message with the engineer. As an inflammatory or a fibrous type of inflammation. How do you see that? The etiology. Or the treatment?

    RP: I have known several people who had it. One of my friends who was in his 80s when I visited him in Toluca 8500 feet altitude. He was blue in the face and just panting, sitting down, and he didn't recognize me, his brain wasn't getting enough oxygen. I gave his daughter some pregnenolone, progesterone and thyroid to give to him a little bit every day. When I came back two weeks later, he was back at work up in his upper floor office without an elevator and took me around the city making me pant. Just a dramatic improvement in oxygen absorption in his lungs.

    HD: Is that how you would see that, plausibly, being a mechanism by which someone could regain their breath again?

    RP: Yeah. High estrogen and nitric oxide are two things that can cause leakage of fluid into the air sacks, and a thickening of the pathway between the air and the capillary. So that the oxygen has to pass through such a thick layer, that it just isn't getting to the blood at a high enough concentration. Pregnenolone alone seems to sometimes very quickly improve oxygenation.

    HD: And what would be a good recommended starting dose for pregnenolone and progesterone? And thyroid, for someone with obstruct pulmonary disease?

    RP: Well with thyroid you want to start very slowly because it increases your need for oxygen as well as improving the lung function. So it's good to start with pregnenolone I think, which doesn't have any hormonal effect . It does help to prevent edema and swelling of the membranes. The dose of pregnenolone doesn't really matter. You just don't want take such a big dose that you are getting additives and contaminants. So 15, 20, 30 milligrams is often a therapeutic dose, but it's OK to take 100 to 300 milligrams if you know the stuff is clean. With progesterone the same thing, 10 to 30 milligrams can make a big difference.

    HD: I wanted to ask you the question about the relationship between antibiotics (and not the latest and greatest antibiotics), specifically minocycline. I saw some articles on PubMed again demonstrating that it lowered the inducible form of nitric oxide and the cytokines that are pro-inflammatory. What do you think about minocycline?

    RP: For several years it's been recognized as a helpful factor for Alzheimer's disease and other brain problems.

    HD: Is that just because it's blocking the endotoxin production?

    RP: It blocks the nitric oxide production.

    HD: Directly blocking the nitric oxide production?

    RP: It directly blocks the enzyme, the way niacinamide does.

    HD: I saw another article again for another old fashioned antibiotic, tetracycline. What do you know about tetracycline?

    RP: It's in the same family: doxicycline, tetracycline and minocycline. Tetracycline, the only problem with it is that it’s too cheap. So doctors are not educated to ...

    HD: So I wonder if cascara would have a similar effect, because it has anthraquinones that are very similar to the tetracycline.

    RP: Yea, I think that structure is what’s happening ...

    HD: We have another caller on the air. So let's take this next caller. Hi, what's your question?

    Caller: I was wondering if you guys could talk about the human growth hormone at all.

    HD: OK, in relation to anything particular or...?

    Caller: Well, some of my friends were talking about it [in relation] to weightlifting. They were talking about it like it's a good thing to build your muscles.

    HD: Same problems as with nitric oxide, i think. Dr. Peat, what do you have to say to somebody who’s using growth hormone?

    RP: You have the same problems that you get from nitric oxide or estrogen. Women, surprisingly, chronically during their reproductive years have high growth hormone chronically. And the growth hormone causes a breakdown of fat in the free fatty acids. So women under the influence of estrogen typically have a chronic exposure to free fatty acids. Which is, if they are unsaturated, increases oxidative damage. And that's just a standard function of growth hormone: it’s to raise your free fatty acids. And that's probably why they see an increased thickness in the wall of blood vessels in the kidneys causing a progressive loss of kidney function from overexposure, or chronic high exposure, to growth hormone. And suspicion that it increases the risk of diabetes, which free fatty acids are known to cause.

    HD2: So it's very inflammatory.

    HD: It's unfortunate. But it's like another cult. Unfortunately, males a little bit are seduced by the potential of growing bigger muscles using anabolic steroids and other compounds. And so obviously growth hormone again is advertised very widely in bodybuilding magazines.
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    Caller: What does anabolic mean?

    HD: Muscle building. It's the opposite of catabolism, which is muscle breakdown. Unfortunately, most body building magazines are reasonably rife with products that I know would not be founded on science to be beneficial for you. It's unfortunate.

    HD2: And also the supplements that are touted to increase nitric oxide: people want to avoid those, like arginine and citrulline.

    HD: We probably need to wrap up this show. Thanks for the callers that called in.
    Dr. Peat, as always, thanks so much for your time and dedication. We really appreciate you joining us on the show.

    RP: OK, thank you.[/justify]
     
  3. brandonk

    brandonk Member

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2015
    Messages:
    145
    Thank you both for this, Giraffe and burtlancast. I thought I'd listened to the interview when it came out, but I somehow missed Ray's "recommended starting dose" until seeing this transcript:

     
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