Week 21 – Balancing Immune System

What I Learned in Week 21

Overall:  Made some new recipes and learn more about balancing your immune system (Th1 / Th2).

Bun-less Hamburger

Bun-less Hamburger


  • Hamburger grilled:  Grass-fed Organic beef with rosemary, fresh garlic and pepper.  Topped with tomato and basil.  Underneath is a romaine lettuce leaf topped with salsa and whole grain mustard.
  • Side of cut tomatoes with (here comes the fancy) cranberry balsamic aged 18 years and Himalayan sea salt.
  • Goat cheese
  • Katamala Greek olives
Raw Donut Holes

Raw Donut Holes | Recipe Source

Balancing the Immune System

Before I begin, most of my research comes from this site explaining things in much better detail.  In fact, I suggest you read about balancing the Th1 (T cell) and Th2 (B cell) immune system on the site.  Below I will explain what I’m going through in balancing my immune system (Th1 / Th2).

As the article states, virtually all autoimmune diseases have a Th1 or Th2 dominance.  For me, my test came back with a Th2 dominance on only ONE marker, IL-6…and it’s 2X more than it should be.  IL-6 has everything to do with inflammation and the immune response.  This joins my other high test results (SED rate, C-Reactive protein).  According to the article, Th1 & Th2 dominance disorders could be:

TH1 dominance disorders:
Multiple sclerosis
IBD/Crohn’s disease
Type 1 diabetes
Hashimoto’s disease, Graves disease (thyroiditis)
Rheumatoid arthritis
Heliobacter pylori induced peptic ulcer

TH2 dominance disorders:
Chronic sinusitis
Many cancers
Hepatitis B and C (mixed Th1 and Th2)
Ulcerative colitis
Viral infections
Systemic lupus erythematosus
Helminth infections

How could I be Th2 dominant?  My disorder matches the Th1 disorders but the test shows I had a high marker in the Th2 area.  If you read the whole article, you may have picked up on this:

While there’s a basic list of common autoimmune conditions as a general guideline below, please be aware that this doesn’t always pan out in practice. I’ve found this along with some other practitioners.  When we run lymphocyte panels on people, we find some that differ from the clinical literature that categorizes people by Th dominance status. (In other words, the research says they should be one thing; but we find in fact that they’re the other.)

There is a lot we still don’t know about autoimmune conditions. If you see yourself on this list, don’t jump to any conclusions or self-diagnose, take the wrong supplement and make yourself worse (i.e. a Th2 dominant MS patient who demyelinates themselves by taking green tea). Always check with a qualified practitioner.Because of this, I might not be the right candidate for balancing my system.  

Although I am no doctor, I am betting that these high markers of inflammation / auto-immune (getting off Enbrel) are skewed and I am an uncommon candidate.  Regardless, I’ll try to stay away from Th2 supplements / high amounts of food until my auto-immune system calms down.

I’d like to hear your viewpoint on this subject in the comment window below.  If you were in my shoes, what would you do?

UPDATE 6/24 – My ND suggested that I am high in IL-6 because of Mercury I have in my system.  It states:

Other factors that increase Th2 include:

    • asbestos, lead, mercury, and other heavy metals, pesticides,
    • morphine, tobacco, alcohol, steroids,
    • pathogens (including HIV, Hepatitis C, and candida), streptococcus thermophilus,
    • continuous stress, negative attitudes and suppressed emotions,
    • sedentary lifestyle, lack of water, low body temperature, and chronic insomnia.
UPDATE 8/21 – After an updated test, my ND has recommended that I do not need to be concerned with the Th1/Th2 test for the concerns I explain above (along with my condition consistently improving).  The results are as follows:
  • Initial Th1/Th2 Test (4/18/12) – IL-6 abnormally high at 19.98.  SED rate 101 (normal 0-15) & C-Reactive Protein 142.8 (normal 0-4.9).
  • Th1/Th2 Test (8/21/12) – IL-6 reduced to 12.10, SED rate 37 (normal 0-15).  As for IL-4 (8.34), the ND states “Increased production of IL-4 can indicate allergies or some sort.  With an increase over this period of time it may indicate something seasonal.  IL-4 also has roles in maturation of T-cells and B-cells.”

For those interested, here are the list of Th1 / Th2 foods.

Th1 Foods/Substances (Increases Th1)

  • Echinacea
  • astragalus
  • licorice root
  • beta-sitosterol (found in avocado and pumpkin seeds)
  • ashwaganda
  • panex ginseng
  • mushrooms
  • chlorella
  • grape seed extract
Th2 Foods/Substances (Increases Th2)
  • Green Tea/Black tea
  • resveratrol – red wine (can’t have due to yeast), red grapes, cocoa powder, dark chocolate
  • pycnogenol – Only buy as a supplement.  A natural plant extract from the bark of the maritime pine tree which grows exclusively along the coast of southwest France in Les Landes de Gascogne.
  • genistein (fava beans and soy beans)
  • quercetin (found in capers, apples, red onions)
  • curcumin (found in Indian Spice Turmeric)

My Health in Week 21

  • Overall:  Hips continue to improve & was able to walk around all of the mall 6/9, anointed at church on 6/10, chiropractor finally able to unlock my neck 6/11, started wearing my Sole Support orthotics on 6/13, and sleep continues to be the same.
  • Mobility: On 6/9, I was able to walk around the entire mall with one major break (had some dinner at Ruby Tuesday) and my hips allowed me to walk faster than normal.  I’m about 2X slower than others now compared to 3X slower the previous week.  Starting 6/11 I am going to the chiropractor 3X this week.  On 6/11 Dr. T was able to unlock my neck after easing into it for the past month.  The next day I was definitely in pain and slept 11 hours, but I’ve been better and more mobile since.
  • Anointing:  For awhile now, I had wanted to be anointed by the church elders up at Sarasota Baptist.  Divine connection allowed me to see the pastor right before service for a few minutes uninterrupted (which is extremely rare) and to be anointed right after service.  Pastor Mike and 5 elders / deacons surrounded me, asked me of any sins I had and then laid hands on me (after the oil was put on my forehead) and prayed for healing and removal of any blocks spiritually.  
  • Sleep:  As with many other previous weeks, I am still waking up twice a night.  I go to bed at 10pm, get up around 1am (take 1 ibuprofen), then around 4am (take 1 ibuprofen, 1 probiotic, and fish oil), then finally get up at 6:30-7:30am.
  • Next Week:  I get my results from the X-Rays I took at Jubilee chiropractic and tests (Metametrix & Heavy Metals) are back from Dr. Joseph Chiropractic.
  • Current Areas of Concern:  Neck and shoulders are still sore from adjustments and inflammation.  Nighttime is still the “achiest” time of day as I’m writing this blog at 9pm and feeling the brunt of it.  Ankles still swollen and probably won’t improve until I get really used to the orthotics.  Lower left back, hips, and knees stiff and sore but improving.  Developed a Canker Sore on my lower-left lip area but pain wasn’t half as bad as in Week 9.
  • Areas of Improvement:  Continuing ibuprofen regiment to reduce inflammation & pain.  Hips, overall mobility and energy better.  In fact I didn’t need to take a morning nap like I’ve needed too today (6/14).
  • Enbrel:  It has been 16 1/2 weeks since my last shot.
  • My lowest weight was 131 lbs. and a BMI of 18.33.