Other diseases

Beta-glucans are also said to have a positive effect in case of use of antibiotics. If this is true, how can it be explained?

The immune system is a very complex system in which many cell types (T and B lymphocytes, macrophages etc.) have to cooperate continuously by means of mutual contacts as well as through the production of hundreds of substances with regulatory effects. Only macrophages as such produce about a hundred of such substances. And this is a huge simplification of the defensive mechanisms; their reactions also involve the central nervous system and the hormone system.

The effects of glucan have been repeatedly established in macrophages as well as in B lymphocytes (which produce antibodies). Thanks to the activation of macrophages, the antigen is presented better, which results in a better antibody response and stronger destruction and elimination of bacteria. By using glucan, we simply strengthen immunity, step on the gas a bit more. The immune system works faster and with a higher number of cells, which shows in a quicker elimination of pathogenic germs, which is also the result of use of antibiotics. We therefore say that antibiotics and glucan have synergic effects.

Is beta-glucan efficient against recurrent tonsillitis and throat abscess? What is its dosage and treatment repetition in this case?

The effects of beta-glucan against bacterial infections have been established repeatedly, so in this case it is definitely efficient. If you suffer from such diseases often, it is advisable to use beta-glucan as prevention, in a regular daily dose of 200mg. Increase this dose twofold as soon as the first signs of tonsillitis appear and get back to the normal, holding dose if you do not feel any complications at all. Clearly, your immune system needs support. You needn't fear repetition, beta-glucan does not know the term "tolerance" or "gradual desensitization".

Hi, I would like to ask you if beta-glucan can help against borreliosis. If so, what is the advisable dose?

Glucan has not been tested for this disease yet, so we can only judge from other biological effects. It is a bacterial disease treated with antibiotics, so glucan should be efficient. There are really many studies on the enhanced antibacterial response of glucan, plus there are confirmations of enhanced effects of antibiotics in combination with glucan, so the chance that glucan will help is high. As regard the dose, 100 to 200mg should do.

I would like to ask you if it is advisable to use beta-glucan against yeast infections. I don't mean for actual treatment, but as a supporting preparation to enhance immunity. Is it suitable when its sources are yeasts and fungi, which you have to avoid in case of yeast infections?

This is a frequent question based on the fact that in case of the so-called yeast infection, one of the diagnostic proofs of the disease is the presence of glucan in the patient's blood. But this does not mean that glucan is the originator of the disease. Beta-glucan is usually isolated from the cell wall of yeasts (this is a different type of yeasts, Saccharomyces cerevisiae) because it is a major component of these cell walls. That is why in case of a disease caused by a systemic yeast infection, parts of the cell walls of decomposing yeasts enter the blood stream and sensitive tests can recognize them as glucan (because it is much easier to prepare a glucan test than a test detecting whole yeasts). The test captures the chemical presence of glucan bound to any part of the cell wall.

Therefore, there is no need to fear the use of glucan in case of yeast infections. In case of an extensive infection, glucan by itself won't cure us, but thanks to its robust support of the immune system it will help the immune system, supported by adequate treatment, fight against the yeast invasion.

I have a 19-year-old grandson who developed an inflammation of the intestines, Crohn's disease, last year and reportedly this disease cannot be fully cured. He often suffers from high fevers (up to 39°C), stomach aches and diarrhoea. Could beta-glucan alleviate his disease? And which type?

Unfortunately you're right that it is virtually impossible to fully cure Crohn's disease; we don't know exactly what causes this illness. However, it has become more evident lately that it is not an autoimmune disease, but conversely an immunodeficiency. And this is where beta-glucan could help. But you have to use a high-quality glucan, otherwise it will be money gone up in smoke.

I have read the webpage about beta-glucans with a lot of interest. Since I've suffered from type II diabetes for several years, which I've treated with adjusted diet and metformin-based drugs (1,000mg twice daily), I would like to ask you if beta-glucans have any established positive effect also against this disease. And also how they act in interaction with diabetes and what dosage is advisable subject to maintenance of prior determined treatment procedures.

Beta-glucan has not been specifically tested for type I and II diabetes. There are studies that demonstrate a certain control of the blood sugar level, so theoretically some effects can be expected. As for dosage, it will be probably good to adhere to a daily amount of 100 to 200mg.

Do beta-glucans have a positive effect on an organism with a chronic fatigue syndrome? Unfortunately, physicians cannot yet clarify the origin of this disease. Each physician tells you something else. Nobody knows for sure what the cause is and how to treat it. The disease is manifested through debilitating fatigue and sleep does not bring any rest. Muscle pains, especially on limbs and sometimes also joints. Is it possible to say anything about this? I would like to point out that the disease was preceded by diseases similar to a series of severe influenzas and antibodies against EB viruses were not found after many blood tests.

You're right, we still don't know much about chronic fatigue syndrome; we even don't know how to avoid and treat it. Not to mention prevention. And since there is no animal model, we know nothing about the effects of beta-glucan. The only thing we can say for sure is that glucan helps against fatigue due to physical strain as well as due to stress. Studies have been published on both. And since we know very well how much glucan influences the immune system whose failure could be responsible for the occurrence of chronic fatigue syndrome, it is definitely worth trying. Our health needs optimum cooperation on the humoral - nervous - immune activity axis and as soon as this cooperation falters, problems appear.

Hi, I would like to ask you if beta-glucan could help with the fight against Staphylococcus aureus. I've been suffering from it for a year and cannot get it out.

The supporting results of glucan against infectious diseases have been described many times and glucan was even tested against infectious diseases a long time before its role in the defence against cancer was established. In addition, the organism's defensive abilities are exhausted by a protracted infection and need help. And glucan should have a positive role here.

In case of long-term use, the best daily dose is 100 to 200mg, without any time limitations for use, i.e. overdose as well as problems due to long-term use are not possible. In your case, it is definitely advisable to use 200mg a day until you get rid of Staphylococcus aureus for good. Then you can switch to half the dose.