By Carol Sieverling
Source : http://www.virtualhometown.com/dfwcfids/medical/nmh.html
DFW CFS and FM Support group : http://www.virtualhometown.com/dfwcfids/
This issue's articles are based on tapes of Carol's October 2000 visit. Dr. Cheney gave permission to share this information, but has not reviewed or edited it.
A year ago Dr. Cheney was prescribing oxygen (with a partial rebreather mask) to increase oxygen transport from the blood into the cells. The benefits were many, but most people found it expensive and difficult to arrange. Dr. Cheney also discovered that the treatment had one flaw: it didn't address the underlying problem of low 2,3 DPG.
2,3 DPG triggers the release of oxygen from the hemoglobin and allows it to enter our tissues. Without enough 2,3 DPG the oxygen cannot release from the hemoglobin into the cells. This oxygen deprivation causes the body to switch over to anaerobic metabolism, which produces tissue acidosis, which is painful. If 2,3 DPG levels can be increased, then more oxygen is transported from the blood into the tissues.
What are the benefits of increased oxygen? They include more energy at the cellular level, suppression of yeast and other pathogens, and prevention of the swelling of the brain due to decreased oxygen.
Dr. Cheney says this swelling of the brain is somewhat common and is the connection between Chiari I and CFIDS. He stated, "Chiari I is a compression phenomenon due to lack of sufficient space at the base of the skull, while CFIDS is a compression phenomenon due to anoxic cerebral edema." (Brain swelling due to lack of oxygen.)
Dr. Cheney asked, "Do you know why Kenyans always win the Boston marathon? They live and train at a high altitude. They run like fiends at 12,000 feet. To compensate for the lack of oxygen at higher altitudes, their bodies make a physiological adjustment—raising 2,3 DPG levels so more oxygen is released. Then the Kenyans go to Boston, which is at sea level, and run their race. However, their bodies are still set for high altitude, so they end up with more oxygen transported into their tissues than other runners. They are super-oxygenated."
Dr. Cheney's goal is to trick our bodies into thinking that we live at a higher altitude, thus raising our 2,3 DPG levels, thereby transporting more oxygen. How? By Dr. Andrew Weil's favorite breathing technique—regulated breath holding.
- Inhale through your nose for four seconds
- Hold your breath for seven seconds
- Exhale through tightly pursed lips, creating "back pressure," for eight seconds.
- Do this eight times, twice a day, everyday.
That's all it takes to make your body think it lives in Denver instead of Dallas. You must do this regularly for it to work, and it takes weeks for the body to adjust the 2,3 DPG levels. But your oxygen transport will get better and better over time. This method is 3,000 years old, and has 30 years of clinical experience behind it. Dr. Weil believes it is the most powerful way to treat chronic illness. Compared to the rebreather, this is easier, cheaper, more effective, and you cannot overcorrect and get too much O2.