Item 8.) Sauna therapy and whole body vibration therapy for non-toxic immune stimulation; concurrent use of nasal inhalation of oxygen during sauna therapy or during whole body vibration therapy as an equivalent of exercise with oxygen therapy (EWOT)

As is often discussed, spending time in a traditional standard sauna or a far infrared sauna can help you to sweat out toxins. If you choose to do sauna detoxification therapy, make sure to wipe off your perspiration during the sauna, and wash yourself off after you finish your sauna, so you don’t reabsorb the toxins that came out in your sweat. For more information, see information from the Heavenly Heat Saunas website about the use of sauna therapy for detoxification:  www.heavenlyheatsaunas.com/why_sauna.htm. Also see an article called “Chemical Exposures at the World Trade Center: Use of the Hubbard Sauna Detoxification Regimen to Improve the Health Status of New York City Rescue Workers Exposed to Toxicants,” by Cecchini et al., Townsend Letter, April 2006, published online December 2006: www.townsendletter.com/Dec2006/chemexp1206.htm.

Less often discussed is the fact that sauna therapy also induces an artificial fever in the body, which stimulates the body’s immune system to fight infections. This is a useful adjunctive therapy for people with systemic infections who need to fight their infections while consuming a minimum of toxic antimicrobial products. When beginning sauna therapy for this purpose, it is important to be cautious and to start with a low sauna temperature and very short sauna sessions. Even if sauna therapy is the only therapy undertaken for the treatment of systemic infections, the fever and immune system stimulation that are produced can, in some people, induce a Herxheimer reaction that includes signs of histamine release such as hives and anaphylaxis. Slowly progressing to higher temperatures and longer sauna sessions can prevent such unfortunate symptoms. (Before beginning sauna therapy, discuss it with a doctor who is familiar with your condition and who also is knowledgeable about sauna therapy and Herxheimer reactions.)

Sauna therapy also stimulates the cardiovascular system in a manner that simulates aerobic exercise – even though the person in the sauna is sitting still. An article by Walter Crinnion, ND, called “Components of Practical Clinical Detox Programs – Sauna as a Therapeutic Tool” cited data from a study (Hannuksela ML, Ellahhham [sic] S. Benefits and risks of sauna bathing. Am J Med. 2001;110[2]:118-126) that said the “cardiovascular effects of a Finnish sauna” include the facts that “heart rate may increase to 100 bpm in  persons who frequently sauna and to 160 bpm in persons unaccustomed to sauna baths.” (See a document called “Managing Biotransformation: The Metabolic, Genomic, and Detoxification Balance Points” from “The Proceedings From the 13th International Symposium of The Institute for Functional Medicine” and find the Crinnion article on page “S154” which is page 76 of this PDF document: www.alternative-therapies.com/at/web_pdfs/ifm_proceedings_high.pdf.)

An article titled “Infrared Radiant Energy” which is “adapted from an article by Dr. Aaron M. Flickstein” says: “The August 7, 1981 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) reported what is common knowledge today: Many people who run do so to place a demand on their cardiovascular system as well as to build muscle. What isn’t well known is that it also reported the ‘regular use of a sauna may impart a similar stress on the cardiovascular system, and its regular use may be as effective as a means of cardiovascular conditioning and burning of calories as regular exercise.’ It has been found that the infrared sauna makes it possible for people in wheelchairs, those who are otherwise unable to exert themselves, […] to achieve a cardiovascular training effect.” (See: www.solis-farinfrared.com/solis%20revised%20flick.pdf. Links to that article and other inspiring articles about the use of sauna therapy can be found at: www.solis-farinfrared.com/articles-current.html.)

Heavenly Heat saunas are made of low-toxicity materials so that they can be tolerated by chemically sensitive people. The saunas are shipped in pieces so that people can install them inside their homes. Many styles are available, and the owner, Bob Morgan, may be able to arrange for the design of the sauna of your choice to be customized to fit your needs. See:  www.heavenlyheatsaunas.com

Less expensive, portable and storable far infrared saunas may offer the flexibility and ease of access that some people may prefer. Examples include:

www.cutcat.com/item/Portable_Far_Infrared_Sauna_Model_2/468

www.solis-farinfrared.com/saunas.html

Information provided by Lawrence Wilson, MD, about how to build your own portable sauna that uses near infrared lamps (“incandescent infrared heat lamps”) can be found at:  www.drlwilson.com/articles/sauna_therapy.htm

You can also buy a ready-to-assemble kit for that near infrared lamp sauna. See:  www.drlwilson.com/SAUNAS/BUY%20OTHER%20SAUNAS.htm and click on the first link in that document.

Dr. Wilson also has written a book called Sauna Therapy for Detoxification and Healing (ISBN-10: 0-9628657-6-1; ISBN-13: 978-0962865763; copyright 2003, 2006) that gives tons of detailed information about different types and uses of saunas, including various protocols. Included are chapters called “Saunas and Infectious Disease” and “Healing Reactions.” Wilson’s book can be purchased via his website: http://drlwilson.com/ORDER%20BOOKS.htm.

Another book with detailed information about sauna therapy that discusses the use of many different kinds of saunas is The Holistic Handbook of Sauna Therapy (ISBN-10: 0967249171; ISBN-13: 978-0967249179; copyright 2004) by Nenah Sylver, PhD. More information about Sylver’s book, including how to purchase it, can be found on her website: www.nenahsylver.com/sauna_handbook_description.html.

As PAL Eric Edney discussed in his website’s August 2010 and July 2009 updates (www.ericiswinning.com/2010/aug.html and www.ericiswinning.com/2009/july.html), one of the many benefits of whole body vibration using equipment such as the Power Plate is that it makes the exercise of muscles – including the heart – accessible to people with limited mobility. Whole body vibration also stimulates the movement of lymphatic fluid in the body, which then stimulates the activity of the cells of the immune system – which encounter pathogens that may previously have been hidden but which may have been exposed by the vibration of body fluids or by the concurrent use of systemic enzyme therapy. (Systemic enzyme therapy can expose pathogens that have been hidden under layers of fibrin. For more information, see the article called “Clinical Efficacy of Systemic Enzyme Support” by Joseph J. Collins, RN, ND, in the Townsend Letter online at www.townsendletter.com/June2009/clinicalefficacy0609.htm. Also see: www.wobenzym-usa.com and www.systemicenzymesupport.org. I am still trying to determine whether or not Wobenzym N is available without any “corn polysaccharides,” so until I receive more detailed information about the current status of Wobenzym N, I am going to stick with Bio-Zyme by Integrative Therapeutics, Inc. [formerly PhytoPharmica]. See: https://secure.endfatigue.com/store/products/supplements/biozyme and www.integrativeinc.com.) By causing cells of the immune system and pathogens to come into direct contact with each other – via whole body vibration and systemic enzyme therapy – you help your immune system to become more efficient. This is another low-toxicity method of helping your body to fight infections.

More information about the Power Plate can be found at: http://us.powerplate.com. Also see:

http://us.powerplate.com/EN/technology/scientific_support.aspx

http://community.powerplate.com.

A similar but less sophisticated and less expensive device by Health Mark, Inc., goes by various names, including “Osci Stadium Platform,” “OSCI STADIUM VF81003” and “ChiVibe”. (While Edney can vouch for the Power Plate, I cannot endorse either device, since I haven’t purchased them. However, I am considering the purchase of the “OSCI STADIUM VF81003” so I have collected information about it.) See more information about it at the following websites:

www.healthmarkinc.net/vf81003.htm

www.gaiam.com/product/gift-guide/gifts-by-recipient/fitness-buff/chivibe.do

www.amazon.com/Health-Mark-VF81003-Stadium-Vibration/dp/B000Y044QC

(A Google search for “OSCI Stadium” or “Osci Stadium” will produce many vendors, including Target, that sell the product. If you want the optional metal balance bar, take note of whether or not it is included with the purchase.)

An exciting idea is to combine the use of sauna therapy and its stimulation of the cardiovascular system with the use of nasal inhalation of oxygen. Similarly, whole body vibration – which also stimulates the cardiovascular system – can be combined with the nasal inhalation of oxygen. The benefit of combining the passive exercise provided by sauna therapy or whole body vibration with the nasal inhalation of oxygen, is you are, in effect, creating what is referred to as “Exercise With Oxygen Therapy” or “EWOT.”

In the book Stop Aging or Slow the Process: Exercise with Oxygen Therapy (EWOT) Can Help (ISBN: 9962-636-37-X; copyright 2003), author William Campbell Douglass II, MD, explains: “Exercising, while breathing oxygen, dramatically increases the amount of oxygen in the blood plasma, i.e., the portion of the blood outside the red and white cells. […] The oxygen content of this [plasma] fluid can be dramatically increased and thus oxygen will be ‘pushed’ into the body’s cells without the aid of the red cells. […] Most of the oxygen in the plasma under these high-saturation circumstances will be ‘wasted’ in that it will not be absorbed by the cells which expect to be ‘fed’ oxygen by the red cells. But if only one-tenth of one percent of the oxygen gets through, and you offer your cells this extra ‘meal’ every day, there will be an extensive increase in your total tissue oxygen level. […] What we are recommending is not strenuous exercise, but exercise for a limited period of time, 15 minutes, in the presence of extra oxygen. This will give you ‘oxygen-rich blood.’” (Find the book on Amazon.com to see the table of contents.)

Douglass’ book provides many easy-to-read examples of the benefits of EWOT, plus some simple charts and graphs that illustrate the benefits of EWOT. The types of exercise discussed in the book include having a person inhale oxygen while: lying down and flexing the arms while holding small hand weights; using a stationary bicycle; walking on a treadmill. (But, as I am suggesting, you could also do the equivalent of EWOT by inhaling oxygen while standing, sitting, or lying down on a whole body vibration platform while it vibrates. Or, you could inhale oxygen while sitting inside a far infrared sauna, in which case the oxygen source would be kept outside of the far infrared sauna and a long nasal cannula would be brought into the sauna through an access hole, if it’s the type of sauna that encloses the entire body, or if it’s a portable far infrared sauna that encloses the body up to the neck, no special access would be needed because the head would be exposed in that case.)

Douglass’ book also includes very simple instructions on how to do EWOT at home, including the suggestion to “set the flow of oxygen to 6 litres [sic] per minute no matter what method you are using to get your oxygen.”

In order to utilize the nasal inhalation of oxygen at 6 liters per minute, you must work with a doctor who can prescribe the oxygen to you. The doctor can help you arrange to obtain oxygen tanks or to purchase an oxygen concentrator. (For more information about oxygen concentrators, Google “oxygen concentrator” and you’ll see the wide variety of products that are available for purchase provided you have a prescription from a doctor.) The oxygen will be delivered to your nose via a nasal cannula or to your nose and mouth via a face mask (both of which come in a variety of versions); with nasal cannulas and even most face masks you will be breathing oxygen that is mixed with ambient air, so you will not be breathing 100 percent oxygen. Even so, it is still possible to inhale too much oxygen, and your doctor may feel that 6 L/m is too much oxygen for you, or that a 15-minute session is too long for you, so you may have to modify the instructions for EWOT according to your doctor’s instructions. It is possible you may have to start out with a lower flow of oxygen and then gradually work your way up to 6 L/m according to your doctor’s instructions. On the other hand, some people may tolerate 6 L/m very well, or even more than 6 L/m oxygen flow. Some people may benefit from more than 15 minutes of oxygen therapy. It’s important to work with an expert to learn what is best for you.

(Remember that the amount of oxygen coming out of the oxygen tank or oxygen concentrator is not the same as the amount of oxygen that you are inhaling, because how much you inhale depends upon many factors. See the article “Is your patient getting enough oxygen?” by Susan K. Smith, RN, C, BS, MS, in LPN2005, Volume 1, Number 2:  http://bach.fhs.usyd.edu.au/stu/hse/iec/mayhewm/oxygen.pdf. Also note that the minimum and maximum oxygen L/m flow requirements from your oxygen concentrator will change depending upon whether you use a cannula or a face mask, and will also change with the type of face mask. So, it is very important to work with a clinician who is knowledgeable about these issues before you purchase your oxygen concentrator, and before you begin or change your EWOT protocol.)

Another book about EWOT, by Jeffrey Donatello, DC, is called Energize Your Brain, Change Your Life: An Introduction to Exercise with Oxygen Therapy (ISBN-10: 144953645X; ISBN-13: 978-1449536459; copyright 2009), and you can see the table of contents and some sample pages from the book on Amazon.com (via the “LOOK INSIDE” feature). Unlike Douglass’ book, which emphasizes the idea that you can do EWOT at home, Donatello encourages people to find a clinician who offers EWOT in the clinic setting, and feels people should not try to do EWOT on their own at home. (In my opinion, if a clinician who offers this therapy is not available in your area, you should be able to discuss it with a doctor who is familiar with your condition and who also understands how to administer oxygen safely, and then after getting instructions from your doctor you should be able to do EWOT at home.) Donatello’s book explains EWOT, including its risks, and includes a number of short anecdotes that discuss the benefits of EWOT.  Some of the anecdotes describe the benefits of the simple administration of oxygen while the patient was sitting or lying down and not exercising or moving at all; many of the anecdotes describe the quantity of oxygen administered in liters per minute and the amount of time the oxygen was administered. In this book, the type of “exercise” most often referred to is the use of an “upper body ergometer,” which is a piece of exercise equipment that allows a person to exercise their upper body while in a seated position. (See: www.3rivers.com/UBE_TheMostUnderUsedAerobicActivity.pdf and Google search the phrase “upper body ergometer” for more information.) But, again, my suggestion is to combine the inhalation of oxygen with the use of a whole body vibration platform (by standing, sitting, or lying on the vibrating platform), or with the use of a far infrared sauna while in a seated position. But, any form of exercise that you can tolerate can be combined with the nasal inhalation of oxygen for increased oxygenation benefits.

Douglass’ book, Stop Aging or Slow the Process: Exercise with Oxygen Therapy (EWOT) Can Help, was inspired by portions of another very detailed and technical book. That book, by Manfred von Ardenne, is called Oxygen Multistep Therapy: Physiological and Technical Foundations (ISBN-10: 0865773777; ISBN-13: 978-0865773776; copyright 1990, 2000; “This book is an authorized and revised translation of the 4th German edition published and copyrighted 1987 by Georg Thieme Verlag, Stuttgart, Germany.”). See more information about the book on Amazon.com or on the publisher’s website: www.thieme.com. Even better, Google the title and look at sample pages of the book via “Google books.” This book goes into detail about a wide variety of protocols utilizing oxygen via various forms of administration during various forms of exercise.

On page 165 of the Oxygen Multistep Therapy book, von Ardenne points out in the caption for Figure 163 (under a photograph of a person wearing a typical nasal cannula): “O2 nozzle applicator (open system), comfortable for user, therefore much used until 1982 despite great O2 losses.” On page 167, the author noted that the nasal cannula (which is referred to as a “nozzle applicator”) became less effective when the person wearing it spoke “and thereby changed from respiration through the nose to respiration through the mouth.”

On page 167 of the Oxygen Multistep Therapy book, von Ardenne continued: “The mask applicator with storage balloon, as shown in Figs 166 and 167, gave by far the best results. The economic nature of this type of applicator, in terms of O2, rests on the fact that even the oxygen which is administered during the expiration phase is led to the lung with only very little loss. The process of the inflation and deflation of the storage balloon can be used to adapt the intensity of the O2 flow to the respiratory minute volume. The adaptation has been accomplished when, at the end of the inhalation phase, the storage balloon has just been deflated. This simplifying procedure can be useful in order to save the costs of an O2 flowmeter or the expensive technical equipment for physical exertion (bicycle ergometer, manual ergometer, rowing device, running belt etc.) in treatment in the patient’s home.” Figure 166 shows a photograph of a person wearing what appears to be a disposable oxygen partial-rebreather face mask (although it’s hard to be certain, even with a magnifying glass, because the photo is small and the mask is transparent and colorless) and the caption says: “O2 mask applicator of soft transparent synthetic material with storage balloon, type MA-SW (half-open system). Most used design; very low O2 loss; comfortable for the user.” (To see photographic comparisons of different types of oxygen face masks, see: http://connectiondev.lww.com/products/evans-smith/Skill%2014-10.asp.)

Of particular interest is the information beginning on page 246 about the use of oxygen therapy following an orally administered combination pill that contains a medication and a selection of vitamin supplements – in particular “nicotinic acid” (the vitamin commonly called niacin) which can cause a “niacin flush,” especially when taken on an empty stomach. This protocol is summarized in “Table 32” on page 247, and it includes the use of “oxygen inhalation via mask applicator with storage balloon (supply: 6 L oxygen per min).” The goal of this particular protocol is “improvement in brain circulation” and improvement of oxygen supply to the “head and neck region,” and the basic protocol is done while the patient is resting. (One of the main applications of this protocol is the treatment of Meniere’s disease, but the same protocol could serve other purposes.) It is suggested that patients with good circulatory condition can combine this protocol (medication/nutritional supplements/oxygen) with exercise. The orally administered combination pill (“OXYBENABUND”) in this protocol includes a pharmaceutical medication called “Dipyridamol” (or Dipyridamole in the USA), most likely for the purposes of vasodilation and anti-platelet aggregation, but I propose that ongoing supplementation with high quality ginkgo biloba (such as Ginkgo-D by MMS Pro www.mmspro.com/ProductDetail.asp?p=GIN32) and garlic (MediHerb Garlic 5000mg www.standardprocess.com/display/MediHerbCatalog.spi?ID=195), when combined with the nutritional supplements in the “OXYBENABUND” formula, could accomplish the same thing more safely than by including the Dipyridamol.

Bruce West, DC, wrote about EWOT in the September 2010 issue of his newsletter, Health Alert (Volume 27, Issue 9). He provided a link with information about EWOT and a source where you can purchase an oxygen concentrator. See: www.oxygen-therapy.biz. At this website, it appears that Dr. West is selling refurbished medical-quality oxygen concentrators without requiring a prescription. (Please check out the legality of this purchase in your geographic area.) The specs on these oxygen concentrators say that they provide “oxygen concentration: 92 plus or minus 4% @ 5LPM, 94 plus or minus 2% @ 2LPM.”

Dr. Zeischegg, MS, DC, CACNB, who goes by “Dr. Z”, sells a “Personal Portable Oxygen Bar-Concentrator” which is a non-prescription oxygen concentrator which he says “provides the HIGHEST OXYGEN/O2 OUTPUT of any non-medical personal oxygen/O2 concentrator on the market! This new technology produces 41% oxygen enriched air at 3 LPM, which means this unit offers 100% more oxygen than the oxygen/O2 level in the air you normally breathe!” (See: www.drz.org/asp/personal_portable_oxygen_O2_bar.asp.) To compare, a typical medical oxygen concentrator (requiring a prescription) may provide 93% oxygen plus or minus 3% within the flow range capability of the machine, which can be from (for example) 0.5 to 5 LPM, or 1 to 6 LPM, or 1 to 10 LPM, or something else, depending upon which kind of oxygen concentrator you buy. To closely approximate the results described in the books by Douglass or von Ardenne, you would need to get a medical oxygen concentrator by prescription. However, according to the testimonials on Dr. Z’s website, the non-prescription oxygen concentrator he sells can still provide some very good results with EWOT utilizing lower levels of oxygen, so for people having difficulty finding a doctor to provide a prescription for an oxygen concentrator, this can be a good alternative. See:

www.drz.org/asp/nl/NL_Personal_Portable_Oxygen_Bar_OL_3.6.08.htm (Here Dr. Z discusses EWOT.)

www.drz.org/asp/conditions/oxygen_deficiency.asp  (“Oxygen/O2 Deficiency and Your Brain”)

www.drz.org/asp/Oxygen/client_testimonials_O2.html (“Dr. Z’s Client Oxygen Bar Testimonials.”)

www.drz.org/asp/personal_portable_oxygen_O2_bar_faq.asp  (FAQs)

www.drz.org/asp/store/DetailPage.asp?ProductID=799 (Purchase page for Dr. Z’s oxygen concentrator.)

www.drz.org/asp/store/DetailPage.asp?ProductID=800  This is the web page for the concentrator’s “A1 Personal Oxygen Concentrator Head Set.” I purchased this head set to use with my medical oxygen concentrator, and I found it difficult to work with. I couldn’t adjust it comfortably, nor manage to keep it stable, and I had a difficult time getting the part where the oxygen comes out near enough to my nose and mouth to receive the oxygen. I have a smaller-size head, so people with larger heads may have better luck.

I ordered a similar oxygen head set product from www.eng3corp.com: “Adjustable Diffuser with Tubing 7ft” (“Article #: 3010031”) which is actually the “OxyArm” manufactured by Southmedic Inc. (See: www.southmedic.com/products/oxyarm.php.) The OxyArm is an excellent product; it is easily adjustable and customizable to fit many different head sizes and shapes, and it provides an excellent air flow that can be directed at the nose, mouth, or both the nose and mouth. However, I discovered that it does come out of adjustment when moving the head frequently, so it is best to use it when sitting or lying still. Look at the rest of the Southmedic website for ideas for other types of oxygen delivery products that might be better suited for use during exercise. See an overview of most (but not all) of their oxygen delivery products at: www.southmedic.com/products/o2-product-list.php. I think an open face mask such as the Southmedic OxyMask Adult (www.southmedic.com/products/oxymask-adult.php ) or a cannula would be the most reliable choices for use with EWOT. (Also see video linked to www.southmedic.com/blog/oxymask-vs-non-rebreather/ to see the comparison between the Southmedic OxyMask Adult and a typical non-rebreather mask. To understand this video, it is helpful to have already read the article “Is your patient getting enough oxygen?” by Susan K. Smith, RN, C, BS, MS, in LPN2005, Volume 1, Number 2:  http://bach.fhs.usyd.edu.au/stu/hse/iec/mayhewm/oxygen.pdf.) However, if you want to duplicate the procedures and results discussed in von Ardenne’s book, Oxygen Multistep Therapy: Physiological and Technical Foundations, you will have to work with your doctor to get the appropriate equipment and use the right level of oxygen flow.

People who are chemically sensitive may want to purchase their oxygen masks and tubing from the American Environmental Health Foundation: www.aehf.com/catalog/index.php?cPath=52_156. If you are interested in their “Tygon Tubing” be sure to ask which kind of Tygon tubing they are selling if you are interested in learning more, because there are many kinds of Tygon tubing (www.tygon.com/tygon-tubing.aspx).

The protocol in this next article may have applications for conditions other than Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (which can be as serious as multiple sclerosis or end-stage AIDS, and which in some cases could actually be undiagnosed Lyme disease): “Paul Cheney, M.D.’s Oxygen Treatment for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” by Carol Sieverling, October 14, 2002. See: www.prohealth.com/library/print.cfm?libid=8812 or www.prohealth.com/library/showarticle.cfm?libid=8812. Unfortunately, the word processor introduced some typos that interfere with the meaning of the article, so here are some suggested corrections:

  • In paragraph 2, in the first sentence, it should say “venous” not “venus.”
  • Paragraph 4’s second word should probably be “putative” not “purative.”
  • In paragraph 8, in the third sentence, it should say “partial rebreather mask,” not “parietal rebreather mask.”
  • Paragraph 9’s fourth sentence should say “(usually above 10 L/m)” not “(usually above 10 I.pm).”

Once you have carefully read the above article – which you will need to do to fully appreciate this next article — read this even-more-important article by Carol Sieverling: Dr. Cheney on an Effective Breathing Technique Alternative to the “Rebreather” Protocol for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, 12-05-2001:  www.prohealth.com/me-cfs/blog/boardDetail.cfm?id=500889. (Again, the technique and concepts discussed in this article could be applied to people with Lyme disease and possibly also to PALS who do not have Lyme disease. If in doubt, consult with your doctor.)

It may be compatible to do short sessions of  EWOT (during sauna, and/or during whole body vibration) and ALSO to do the breathing exercise Dr. Cheney described in that last article, in different days of the same week, or perhaps at different times of the same day. The important thing is not to overdo the oxygen inhalation. Again, discuss this with your doctor.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: