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Meniere's Disease

Meniere's disease accounts for about five percent of all dizziness, and 10 to 15 percent of all vertigo (a sensation that the world is moving around one). It generally occurs in adults and consists of recurring episodes of ringing in the ears (tinnitus) and hearing loss, and a feeling that the room is spinning. Patients often report a sensation of “fullness” in the ears. The vertigo may last hours or days, occur every week, or go ten years without a recurrence. About 80 to 90 percent of patients have hearing loss only on one side. The disease may progress until the patient is completely deaf in the afflicted ear.

The cause of Meniere's disease is unknown, but it may be related to a dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system which produces a constriction of the blood vessels which supply the inner ear.

Meniere's disease most commonly occurs in women 50 to 60 years of age. The onset is sudden, and without warning. Sudden movement of the head during an attack may induce nausea and vomiting. There may be uncontrollable horizontal jerking of the eyeballs. Patients often have a history of allergies, vasomotor rhinitis, and ear trouble.

Treatment

1. Use an oil-free diet to improve blood circulation in the tiny capillaries.

2. Smoking induces vasospasm and vasoconstriction and should be eliminated.

3. Lying quietly on the affected side with eyes turned in the direction of the affected ear may assist in relieving the attack.

4. Patients should be allowed to move at their own rate, and be protected from sudden moving and jarring as this aggravates vertigo.

5. Persons speaking to victims of Meniere's disease should stand directly in front of them so the patient does not have to turn his head.

6. The patient should not try to read and should be protected from bright lights.

7. Several studies have shown a relationship between Meniere's disease and diet Dr. Roger Boles, of the department of otolaryngology of the School of Medicine at the University of California reports that almost 9 out of 10 Meniere's disease patients are greatly improved on a strict low-salt diet

8. Diuretic teas such as watermelon seed, buchu, burdock, and cornsilk may be helpful. Asparagus shoots have a diuretic action.

9. Some cases of Meniere's disease may be due to food allergies. Dr. Jack Clemis, an associate in otolaryngology at Northwestern University Medical School reports that allergies to milk, eggs, corn, wheat, and yeast are sometimes the cause. Eliminating these foods from the diet results in clearing of Meniere's disease.

We suggest the exclusion of the most common food allergens for a month, then reintroducing one food at a time about a week apart. If symptoms recur, eliminate the food.

10. Dr. William A. Updegraft, director of the department of otolaryngology at Vassar Brothers Hospital, Poughkeepsie, New York, says that the most common cause of vertigo is a disorder of glucose metabolism. He observed that variations from normal in glucose tolerance testing are very frequently accompanied by dizziness. When insulin levels are normal the patient seldom has tinnitus, vertigo, fullness in the ear, or fluctuant hearing loss.

Dr. T. S. Danowski, professor at the University of Pittsburg School of Medicine, has developed a system involving a glucose tolerance sum. He tabulates the sum of fasting, one-half hour, one hour, and two-hour blood sugar levels. If the sum is under 500 mg. per 100 mi., there is no diabetes and vertigo is rare. A sum between 500 and 800 mg. per 100 mi., he calls a pre-diabetic or chemical diabetic state. Vertigo is common in this range. A total of over 800 mg. per 100 mi. indicates diabetes. A stable diabetic with little glucose fluctuation rarely has vertigo, but with wide swings in blood sugar levels dizziness is frequent Dr. Danowski gives his patients a healthful diet and all but a half-dozen patients in a three-and-a-half-year study period have had no recurrence of dizziness. The use of the pancreas recovery program will assist in normalizing any blood sugar problems present

11 . Daily outdoor exercise will assist in improving the circulation to the inner ear.

12. Stay well-hydrated to keep the blood from becoming excessively thick, hindering proper flow.

Pancreas Recovery Diet

1. Avoid all sugars including white, brown, and raw sugar, fructose, honey, syrups, jams, jellies, preserves, jello, etc.

2. Pies, cakes, sweetened desserts of any type, jello, should not be used. Make your own healthful desserts without sugar. A cookbook will be helpful.

3. Cheese and milk and milk products are best eliminated. Milk contains leucine which has been shown to induce hypoglycemic syndrome.

4. Refined grains including white breads, crackers, saltines, white macaroni, white rice, spaghetti, and other refined grain foods should be replaced with whole grain products.

5. Extremely sweet fruits such as raisins, dates, figs, etc., are concentrated foods and are best eliminated for at least a year after beginning the diet after a year small amounts may be introduced on a trial basis, and used if no symptoms develop. Bananas, watermelon, mangoes and sweet potatoes are all in this category. Grapes may induce symptoms in some people.

6. Caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol are all harmful to body mechanisms that regulate blood sugar. Coffee, tea, cola drinks, and chocolate all contain caffeine. Many over-the-counter medications contain caffeine.

7. Soft drinks contain excessive amounts of sugar or sweeteners. Fruit juices are concentrated foods and should be used sparingly, if at all. It is much better to use the whole fruit.

8. Spices have an adverse effect on the nervous system and may aggravate symptoms. Vinegar and vinegar-containing foods may be prepared using lemon juice and salt in place of the vinegar.

Health | Disorders


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