jpjd59

Has Anyone Tried Eucommia Bark???

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Just wondering if anyone has tried Eucommia Bark? (I heard it is supposed to act as a natural beta blocker). I would love to know if you had any improvement or side effects.

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Ive taken it on and off for years. I like it better than conventional beta blockers because it lasts longer and does leave me as prone to worsened dizziness. No side effects other than taste. In a mix with rehmannia it actually can help all my symptoms.

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Hi,

I'm just starting out here as a member, but I thought I should reply to this topic. I'm a trained herbalist, and I actually have some Eucommia Bark on its way to me, and am very curious to try it.

Eucommia is a Nonselective Beta blocker, so it is similar in action to some of the others I have seen used for both migraine and dysautonomia. Given my past, suspicion of PTSD, migraine, dysautonomia, and hyperadrenergic inclination I am curious if it will help ameliorate or worsen any of my symptoms. I still can't determine if the hyperadrenergic state is the primary cause of my issues or the body's answer (secondary) to balance out something else that may be, in fact, hypoadrenergic.

From brief research on Rehmannia, it appears to modulate the dopamiergic system and stop production of pro-inflammatory factors. This seems like a great candidate to be used in conjunction with Eucommia, or with it as part of a wider herbal formula.

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Hi,

I'm just starting out here as a member, but I thought I should reply to this topic. I'm a trained herbalist, and I actually have some Eucommia Bark on its way to me, and am very curious to try it.

Eucommia is a Nonselective Beta blocker, so it is similar in action to some of the others I have seen used for both migraine and dysautonomia.

I have been trying to find this herb for months. None of my local stores have it. Where did you order it from? Also, would you happen to know - since this is like a beta blocker ---would it degranulate mast cells like betas do? Since I have MCAS and can't take betas - wondering, since it's an herbal if it would have the same reaction. Although, it sure sounds like it would help. Rehumania is much easier to find and is in a whole lot of chinese mixtures. Rama has been talking about these two herbs for awhile and even though he says he has taken them for years - they must not be ALL he needed cause I know he's added some meds to his routine in the last half year. But, it sure sounds like it might help, still looking for my purple bandaid. I hope I can find the Eucommia bark.............

Issie

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Hi,

I'm just starting out here as a member, but I thought I should reply to this topic. I'm a trained herbalist, and I actually have some Eucommia Bark on its way to me, and am very curious to try it.

Eucommia is a Nonselective Beta blocker, so it is similar in action to some of the others I have seen used for both migraine and dysautonomia.

I have been trying to find this herb for months. None of my local stores have it. Where did you order it from? Also, would you happen to know - since this is like a beta blocker ---would it degranulate mast cells like betas do? Since I have MCAS and can't take betas - wondering, since it's an herbal if it would have the same reaction. Although, it sure sounds like it would help. Rehumania is much easier to find and is in a whole lot of chinese mixtures. Rama has been talking about these two herbs for awhile and even though he says he has taken them for years - they must not be ALL he needed cause I know he's added some meds to his routine in the last half year. But, it sure sounds like it might help, still looking for my purple bandaid. I hope I can find the Eucommia bark.............

Issie

Issie:

Me too. I have called my local health food store and they don't carry it. I do see that it can be ordered on-line but I don't much about this herb so I don't know which website is best to order through. Also, I had the same question as you since we suspect that my daugther is dealing with a mast cell issue and I am not sure if this would help or make her worse (like beta blockers do). Let me know if you find out anything about this. Thanks!

Pam

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Well, I didn't expect to start discussing herbs and nutrition so soon after my arrival! In the course of searching for answers for my own and others' health issues for a while now, I got into herbs, did some schooling, and started a small business a few years ago.

Long story short, I've got a few wholesale distributors that I've been working with and I discovered that one of them actually had the bark, so I placed an order. I couldn't find it through any of the normal channels locally or online in a small amount to try it first, so I have a whole pound coming! I'll post an update once it has arrived, and I check it for quality and purity. I may be able to ship out a few samples or something to that effect.

I'm planning to make a tincture (alcohol extract) of it, which helps preserve its strenth as well as allow for easy dosing. The amount of alcohol in a dose is very minimal and shouldn't bother anyone that is sensitive to drinking. As a matter of fact, breakdown of certain foods is likely to produce more alcohol than the amount in a dose of a tincure. :)

In all honesty, I have not found a large amount of information on Eucommia as compared to some of the other herbs I use. Whether or not it would be a mast cell degranulator is a very interesting question, but may not be fully able to be confirmed without trying some. I would think that for anyone that has a hyperadrenergic state and MCAS that the degranulation effect of the Beta blockade would be less than that caused by the adrenal rushes, as long as there was no allergic reaction. Beta blockade may also be effective in combination with Histamine (H1/H2) blockade.

--- Time passes, lots of research papers and studies read.... ---

Interestingly enough, and this is part of why I love herbs SO much, Eucommia contains a iridoid glycoside called Aucubin. A research paper I referenced states that Aucubin is a specific inhibitor of NF-kappaB activation in mast cells, which might explain its beneficial effect in the treatment of chronic allergic inflammatory diseases. So, cutting through the jargon, this appears to say that Aucubin in Eucommia actually prevents activation of mast cells. This suggests that it may not have the same side effects of Beta blockers for those with dys and MCAS, but rather it may be beneficial for both. :)

This is part of what makes herbs so superior - the fact that they are naturally built with numerous active ingredients, co-factors, and supportive nutrients. This is a great part of why they are so much more biologically friendly and do not have the numerous side effects of using a single chemical substance.

While we're on the topic of MCAS, Quercetin actually is bioflavonoid which blocks mast cell and basophile histamine degranulation. It is sold as a supplement isolated from plants, though my first preference is to use foods that contain the substance as they have many other valuable co-factors that are missing in an isolate. Bee pollen, onions (especially red ones and in the outermost rings), black/green tea, citrus, and tomatoes are a few sources rich in quercetin. It also has MAO-A, MAO-B inhibiting properties as well. Interestingly enough, recent studies showed that organically grown vegetables had higher concentrations, so another reason to buy organic.

Hope this sheds some light on the subject, and thanks for prompting me to do a bunch more reserach on Eucommia. This will be very helpful for an eventual formulation, as well when I am assist others in the use of herbs! I learned a lot!

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Zap:

Thanks for all of your research. I hope someone with MCAS that has tried eucommia bark joins in on this topic. I would love to know if it made their MCAS symptoms worse or better (we were just at the ER last night for a reaction to a med so I don't think we are ready to try anything new yet).

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Sure thing - hopefully there is someone out there who has given it a try. I'll report in with my results when it comes, too. I've never been tested for MCAS, so I'll have to look into that also. I plan to bring it up at my EMG appointment, as my autonomic neurologist is going to be there.

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Eucommia bark is better known as Du Zhong and can be purchased at just about any Chinese apothecary (look in your local China-town.) It comes raw and salt-fried (it depends on the action you want..don't ask, I don't know!) I DO know that an alcohol tincture is NOT the same as a traditional water decoction and may completely change the chemistry and in vivo action. It would not be used alone in Chinese Medicine, it would be used with other herbs to modify or direct its action. Be very careful, this herbal stuff is not harmless, even if it is natural.

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http://duiyaoonline....rbs/duzhong.htm

More info on DuZhong.

Be aware, it is a potent anti-hypertensive and can cause hypotension.

"The ethanol extract of the herb increases heart rate and contraction amplitude. The herb exhibits a marked cardiotonic action."

Edited by firewatcher

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http://duiyaoonline....rbs/duzhong.htm

More info on DuZhong.

Be aware, it is a potent anti-hypertensive and can cause hypotension.

"The ethanol extract of the herb increases heart rate and contraction amplitude. The herb exhibits a marked cardiotonic action."

Firewatcher:

Thanks

http://duiyaoonline....rbs/duzhong.htm

More info on DuZhong.

Be aware, it is a potent anti-hypertensive and can cause hypotension.

"The ethanol extract of the herb increases heart rate and contraction amplitude. The herb exhibits a marked cardiotonic action."

Firewatcher:

Thanks! After researching what I can about it I think we are going to hold off. My daughter's primary doctors don't know enough about it to risk trying it.

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jpjd59,

IF you want to try DuZhong, go see a trained herbalist, it may be entirely appropriate. I am leery of "inappropriate" use of Chinese herbals, the vast majority of these herbs are used in formulas (several of which have helped me.) These herbs are almost never used alone and almost never at the levels you would find in "supplements." Just because a little of something is good, it does not mean that more of it is better!

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Beta blockade may also be effective in combination with Histamine (H1/H2) blockade

While we're on the topic of MCAS, Quercetin actually is bioflavonoid which blocks mast cell and basophile histamine degranulation. It is sold as a supplement isolated from plants, though my first preference is to use foods that contain the substance as they have many other valuable co-factors that are missing in an isolate. Bee pollen, onions (especially red ones and in the outermost rings), black/green tea, citrus, and tomatoes are a few sources rich in quercetin. It also has MAO-A, MAO-B inhibiting properties as well. Interestingly enough, recent studies showed that organically grown vegetables had higher concentrations, so another reason to buy organic.

For those of us with mast cell issues ----beta blockers even with H1 and H2's are a no go. It will degranulate mast cells. I think a good many of us have tried it- despite knowing this and most of us have found it to be worse than dealing with the problems.

I've used Quercetin for a couple years now and use a non citrus form of it. It does seem to help. Some of us have other issues with some of the foods that you've listed however. With some people green or black tea will make POTS worse - citrus causes some of us with mast cells to have a problem. Tomatoes are in the night shade family and can also cause allergic reactions. It's such a shame that those things that are supposed to be so good for us - we can't seem to do without consequences. Sometimes, we may not realize that things that are supposed to be good for us - could be causing some of our issues. For example, I recently found out I have issues with sulfites and sulfur - most of my diet consist of foods high in sulphur - like: onions, garlic, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage etc. Now, I have to figure out how to eat a healthy diet and not have those types of foods. Or to at least minimize them.

Many of us are trying to be gluten and grain free. So, alcohol tincture would be out for us. Some people are so sensitive to things that even a small amount of dye in a pill will set off a problem. So, thinking that the water infusion method would be better for most of us. I know that Rama has mentioned Eucomma and Rehumina along with a few other herbs that he has used and found very beneficial and he makes a tea out of them. (Rama, can you tell everyone how much you use of these herbs, the combinations and how long you steep/boil them to make the tea. And also how much of it you take once you have it combined and ready?)

I'm not opposed to being the first MCAS person to try this, but first I have to find it. I have been trying to get it for a few months now. I called several Chinese grocery stores and also have tried to call a TCM in China Town here and no one answered. So, I will keep trying to get it and give it a go. I can get Rehumania and the other herbs that Rama told me about - it's the eucomma that's the problem. Like firewatcher said, it's probably better to combine them than to take them as a single herb.

You must be very careful with herbs. They are powerful medicines. What is good for one person is not good for another. If you don't know a persons ENTIRE medical history and issues, you can recommend something that would really mess them up. I hesitate to suggest anything to someone unless I know their entire history and issues. For sure, I'd never suggest something to a whole mass of people ---espically POTS people, unless I knew that there were minimal possible side effects. And if I know what those are, I will list that so a person can make their own decision as to whether or not to try something. All of our presentations are different and we are all dealing with different things. Some of us have high bp's and high NE levels. Others are low bp's and low NE levels. Some faint, others do not. Some have digestive issues and slow bowel actions, others are the complete opposite. All of us have tachy and orthostatic issues - some worse than others. So, there is a good bit of trial and error ----and it seems more error than not. :)

Issie

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For those of us with mast cell issues ----beta blockers even with H1 and H2's are a no go. It will degranulate mast cells. I think a good many of us have tried it- despite knowing this and most of us have found it to be worse than dealing with the problems.

Bummer - I guess this suggests that there is another mechanism at work that either overrides the histamine blockade, or degranulates the mast cells in another way.

I'm happy to hear that Quercetin has been helpful - in the case of food allergy, the isolated form of it may be the safest bet after all.

It makes sense that tea/caffeine can make POTS worse for some. The information you've provided makes me suspect I probably don't have a mast cell problem, as I eat lots of the foods in question and at least at this point have not had problems with them. I also haven't had the problems I've read about with alcohol and MCAS.

Many of us are trying to be gluten and grain free. So, alcohol tincture would be out for us.

At least in my case, this is why everything our business makes uses Organic Grape Alcohol. It is much more hypoallergenic and risk free for those of us who are sensitive. I tend to be sensitive to a lot of things, so I can certainly understand. That said, alcohol and water work differently for extracting various compounds. Hence, our tinctures use a mix of water and grape alcohol suited to the specific herb(s) in a given extract/formula.

If Rama is having good results with a tea, this makes the most sense to try first. It is also the simplest method. Heat can, however, modify certain principles in the herbs as well. This complicates using herbs in a ground vs tea vs tincture comparison. I'd be curious to hear more about what Rama is doing.

I'd be happy to send you some of the herb once it arrives, if you'd like. We actually have about a hundred herbs in stock at a given time. This is one I had a harder time finding through channels available to me as an herbalist, so I can understand it being more difficult to locate at retail.

I would agree that formulas are the better approach, as the amount of any given herb is reduced. Also, the formula is more than the sum of its parts if designed by an experienced herbalist. It is also best to start with a small amount and listen to your body to see if the particular herb(s) are working for you.

It is wonderful to have an intelligent group with so much information here.

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You can't base whether or not you have mast cell issues on food sensitivities. Mast cell degranulation can occur out of the blue. It can be triggered by emotions, arousal, exercise and other things. It's an over-activation of mast cells that release histamine. Some people are finding that their POTS symptoms improve with treating a mast cell issue. Others find that it may be a part of their problem, but not ALL of their problem.

There is so much to learn about symptoms of POTS and things that can go along with it.

I'm wondering if grape alcohol is sulfite free? Since grape alcohol would be like wine - correct?

Issie

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Issie,

Be aware that many of the Chinese herbs you would find are sulfured in the preparation process. I know of two companies that offer quality tested, bulk, unsulfured herbs (Springwind and Mayway) but I believe that you have to be a licensed practitioner to order from them. Individual herbs can also be found as granules and formulas as teapills, and they are easily obtained from Amazon and other places, but they are often not as effective as decocting the bulk herbs together.

DuZhong is in roughly 11 formulas: http://www.rootdown.us/Herbs/Du+Zhong?query=duzhong

As far as the decoction process, the instructions for cook time/method vary from formula to formula. The instructions are often like "cook in three bowls of water until reduced to one bowl, strain off the liquid and drink in two divided doses during the day." The tangs (that is what CM calls the decoction) that I take are often cooked in a personal Korean herb cooker, which looks a great deal like a coffee maker. The decoction times have varied from 90 minutes to four and a half hours, with the time dependent on the formula and herbs.

My son has anaphylactic food allergies and has been on the CM original formula for FAHF-2, which is an herbal formula that has been proven to cure anaphylactic allergies in mice: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15637565 This formula is currently being used in phase 2 human trials for peanut allergy. It apparently remodulates the immune system and stops the entire process of anaphylaxis. They are not yet doing a study of his food allergy and I did not want to wait for a drug to be synthesized, so I researched and found a CM medicine practitioner to oversee his care along with his allergist. I did not diagnose him according to CM theory, but the practitioner did, and suggested this formula before I mentioned it. He will go for his second oral challenge in August.

BTW- the original FAHF formula is not for many of us here, regardless of mast cell issues. It is very specific and very powerful; it will completely tank your system if it is not appropriate for you!

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Thanks firewatcher for the info. One of the preps in those listed 11 forumulas looks like one of the ones Rama had given me. I'll have to find my note from him and compare it. Thanks for the heads up on the herbal prep. I don't think I'm so sensitive to sulfur that everything will be a problem - but, maybe lowering my daily intake will make a difference.

Interesting about the forumula for your son and his food sensitivities. Let me know how he does. I've been trying to get in touch with the TCM in China Town here - as I've heard he has helped some other people and it's the only avenue I haven't investigated yet. I have had some of the tea pills in the past from a DO who also did acupunture. He studied in China. I don't live there any more - or I'd go visit him again. One other person here is now seeing a TCM. She was going to check for me and see if he knew someone here in AZ that might be helpful. (She's in another state.)

I'll look up those herbal companies and see if you have to be licensced to get them. I used to help someone else who had a license and learned a whole lot over the years by my exposure in and around the alternative med. field. But, no longer have access to ordering through his license, since he moved. Alternative meds are my main focus --first thing to try ---last thing to try are traditional RX meds. I've been through most all of them at this point - but, still searching for a better fit.

Issie

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Sometimes if you look hard enough you will find reasons not to try anything. I wouldnt over think it personally.

Rama has been talking about these two herbs for awhile and even though he says he has taken them for years - they must not be ALL he needed cause I know he's added some meds to his routine in the last half year.

I dont remember ever claiming either cured me permanently or that they were all I needed... But I doubt a beta blocker alone would cure anyone from POTS... The question was whether anyone had tried this herb. I have tried it and I found it helpful. As for mast cell issues again Id raise the point that far more patients think they have mast cell issues than doctors suggest. patients could be right here but I doubt Id go on assumption when considering my own treatment plan (with doctors consultation ofcourse).

Compraed to a conventional beta blocker I think Eucommia works quite well. Infact its probably the most relaxed ive been in ages. My herbalist was thinking that I respond to MAOIs but who knows.

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Thanks firewatcher for the info. One of the preps in those listed 11 forumulas looks like one of the ones Rama had given me.

Issie

Now to state I have 'given' you formulas would be a stretch. You asked and I offered but I never prescribed. As ive said previously, consult a TCM specialist before considering these preparations. I dont prescribe herbal medications :)

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Sometimes if you look hard enough you will find reasons not to try anything. I wouldnt over think it personally.

THIS - I have to say that I most certainly agree with Rama. Inaction is most definitely a choice, and usually a bad one at that. :) Looks like my Eucommia isn't coming for a day or two yet, but I will be certain to give an update once it arrives.

Also of interest is our common symptom of persistent migraine aura - what an eloquent way of putting what I have been experiencing for months into words!

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"Sometimes if you look hard enough you will find reasons not to try anything."

I also agree with this statement, but far too many people don't look hard enough and end up harming themselves saying: "if I had only known!" There is also a HUGE misconception that just because something is NATURAL that it also means that it is SAFE and this is just not the case! This is an ancient and very effective pharmacy!

I have had good success with my herbal regimen and have more daily ability now than I have had in ten years, but I would not just try this stuff based on isolated abstracts or chemical studies! I dislike the whole "supplement" concept that CM is given, it oversimplifies a very effective system and creates a cavalier attitude toward substances that need to be respected for their potency.

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As for mast cell issues again Id raise the point that far more patients think they have mast cell issues than doctors suggest. patients could be right here but I doubt Id go on assumption

IF this was directed to me, because of the worry of mast cell degranulation ----my genetic profile confirmed the suspected MCAS. As has my history with response.

As most everyone here knows, I try just about everything at least once - even if I find with research it may not be the best thing for me. Just because data may show it might not be the best thing for me, there is no telling how my body will react - without trying it. Many experiements have gone wrong and my suspected response proven right. But, at least I give it a go and try to stay with it long enough for the experiment to be confirmed - one way or the other.

Issie

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Thanks firewatcher for the info. One of the preps in those listed 11 forumulas looks like one of the ones Rama had given me.

Issie

Now to state I have 'given' you formulas would be a stretch. You asked and I offered but I never prescribed. As ive said previously, consult a TCM specialist before considering these preparations. I dont prescribe herbal medications :)

Yes, and I thank you very much for suggesting the herbs that have worked well for you. I do intend to try them as soon as I can find them all. Since, I don't want to do one at a time - but, all four of them together. Thanks again!

Issie

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Well, I didn't expect to start discussing herbs and nutrition so soon after my arrival! In the course of searching for answers for my own and others' health issues for a while now, I got into herbs, did some schooling, and started a small business a few years ago.

Long story short, I've got a few wholesale distributors that I've been working with and I discovered that one of them actually had the bark, so I placed an order. I couldn't find it through any of the normal channels locally or online in a small amount to try it first, so I have a whole pound coming! I'll post an update once it has arrived, and I check it for quality and purity. I may be able to ship out a few samples or something to that effect.

I'm planning to make a tincture (alcohol extract) of it, which helps preserve its strenth as well as allow for easy dosing. The amount of alcohol in a dose is very minimal and shouldn't bother anyone that is sensitive to drinking. As a matter of fact, breakdown of certain foods is likely to produce more alcohol than the amount in a dose of a tincure. :)

In all honesty, I have not found a large amount of information on Eucommia as compared to some of the other herbs I use. Whether or not it would be a mast cell degranulator is a very interesting question, but may not be fully able to be confirmed without trying some. I would think that for anyone that has a hyperadrenergic state and MCAS that the degranulation effect of the Beta blockade would be less than that caused by the adrenal rushes, as long as there was no allergic reaction. Beta blockade may also be effective in combination with Histamine (H1/H2) blockade.

--- Time passes, lots of research papers and studies read.... ---

Interestingly enough, and this is part of why I love herbs SO much, Eucommia contains a iridoid glycoside called Aucubin. A research paper I referenced states that Aucubin is a specific inhibitor of NF-kappaB activation in mast cells, which might explain its beneficial effect in the treatment of chronic allergic inflammatory diseases. So, cutting through the jargon, this appears to say that Aucubin in Eucommia actually prevents activation of mast cells. This suggests that it may not have the same side effects of Beta blockers for those with dys and MCAS, but rather it may be beneficial for both. :)

This is part of what makes herbs so superior - the fact that they are naturally built with numerous active ingredients, co-factors, and supportive nutrients. This is a great part of why they are so much more biologically friendly and do not have the numerous side effects of using a single chemical substance.

While we're on the topic of MCAS, Quercetin actually is bioflavonoid which blocks mast cell and basophile histamine degranulation. It is sold as a supplement isolated from plants, though my first preference is to use foods that contain the substance as they have many other valuable co-factors that are missing in an isolate. Bee pollen, onions (especially red ones and in the outermost rings), black/green tea, citrus, and tomatoes are a few sources rich in quercetin. It also has MAO-A, MAO-B inhibiting properties as well. Interestingly enough, recent studies showed that organically grown vegetables had higher concentrations, so another reason to buy organic.

Hope this sheds some light on the subject, and thanks for prompting me to do a bunch more reserach on Eucommia. This will be very helpful for an eventual formulation, as well when I am assist others in the use of herbs! I learned a lot!

Zap:

Regarding Quercetin: I understand that this blocks mast cell degranulation. I read somewhere that it increases NE levels. Is this true? So if someone is hyperPOTS with MCAS would this help or hurt?

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I had never heard this before about quercetin increasing noriepi - but, the internet does have info indicating that. It says it blocks COMT which could increase NE levels. Another study I read says it helps to regulate the NE receptors.

I have HyperPOTS and use quercetin. I can't tell that it has caused my POTS to be worse from using it. And I have less issues with allergies. It does definitely help with mast cell degranulation. Supposedly by NE activation. Maybe, some of us have higher NE levels for that reason??????????

Interesting question. I do know that it will lower your blood pressure and it may not be so good for those with already low blood pressures. But, with my bp being mostly high - lowering it is good for me. I'll pay closer attention and see if the quercetin is making my surges worse - but, not thinking that they are. I will do a few days without and then add it back in and see if there is a difference. I'll let you know.

Issie

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