Wade Riddick riddick at
Wed May 8 00:15:10 EDT 2002

It's interesting to me personally that Karey Perkins brings up the topic of
autism.  I'm currently being treated for several metabolic conditions in
Baton Rouge by Dr. Stephanie Cave, a figure in the autism community.  She's
of the opinion that autism is a special case of mercury poisoning which
arises in a segment of the population with a defect in the natural
chelating gene.

Chelation is the process whereby the body grabs metal toxins floating
around in the body and gets rid of them.  In the case of autism it's
theorized that childhood exposure to mercury unnecessarily used as a
disinfectant in vaccinations (Thimerosal) affects brain development.  Since
autism now affects more than one in five hundred people, this is a major
medical problem.  Dr. Cave reports great progress treating autism as a case
of mercury poisoning - the standard treatment being a monthly course of
DMPS shots.

There is still some controversy as to whether or not the mercury we're
needlessly shooting into the arms of our babies is making them sick.  I
simply offer the following paper for those interested.  A web search should
turn it up quite easily.  Bernard, et al. published a paper in 2000 drawing
connections between genetic inheritance, mercury poisoning and autism
called "Autism: A Unique Type of Mercury Poisoning."  There is a strong
correlation between exposure to mercury in Thimerosal and incidence of
childhood autism.  Until Thimerosal was introduced in vaccines in the early
20th century, there was never a documented case of autism.  The rate of
autism has increased in direct proportion to mercury exposure received
through the new vaccines, the most recent being one for Hepatitis
introduced in the early '90s.  Evidence of a genetic component becomes
apparent when you examine twins with different vaccination records.  The
twin with lower exposure had a statistically lower chance of getting autism
with proportionally less severe symptoms.

I can speak first hand about the cognitive effects of such disorders.

My own exposure to mercury came through the four amalgam fillings in my
teeth.  Despite two knee surgeries, severely pulled muscles in my neck,
chest pain and cubital tunnel syndrome by age twenty, the dentists who
installed those fillings never bothered to examine me for sleep
apnea/bruxism.  The bruxism caused me to grind my teeth at night and
there's only so much even a normal body can do to get rid of mercury.  Over
the next decade, I developed an inevitable case of mercury poisoning.  Even
a little bit of the metal can wreak havoc on every system in the body,
particularly glands and neurological tissue.

I'm now so sensitive to the metal, I can't eat seafood any longer thanks to
the mercury-rich drilling mud the offshore oil industry has been tossing
into our oceans for decades.  If you don't believe me about mercury levels
in fish, go buy a piece of fish from the gulf and have it tested.  Tuna is
one of the worst, although the FDA has been bribed to put out statements to
the contrary.  Pregnant women are most at risk to this kind of exposure.
Despite that doctors continue to give pregnant women in utero inoculations
containing Thimerosal.

Combined with the exhaustion caused by apnea and a nearly lifetime yeast
infection brought about by overexposure to antibiotics (called Candidiasis
or Leaky Gut Syndrome), I had a severe crisis last fall which had quite
substantial effects on my cognition.  The naturally occurring yeast in my
intestines are fungi and so were unaffected by the antibiotics.  They fed
on the sugar, carbohydrates, caffeine and other unhealthy components of our
modern diet - even common medications like Advil.  Lacking bacterial
competition to balance them, the yeast exploded, causing a host of
allergies and other subtle problems doctors are only now beginning to
recognize.  Without symbiotic bacteria, I had nothing to help me process
and absorb necessary nutrients like Vitamin B complex.  No vitamin B, no
cognition - literally.  It hasn't helped that omega-3 oil levels in the
American diet have dropped precipitously over the last century.

Every single one of these conditions I've described is quite common, but
most doctors are not trained to spot and treat them.  I would not be
surprised if half the people on this list had some sort of yeast problem
they have dismissed as acne, athletes' foot, hay fever or any of a hundred
other things.  It's easier to get a cream or salve or pill to treat the
symptoms instead of giving up all those modern foods most bodies aren't
evolved to handle.

Yeah, I know.  I come across as a vitamin-pushing Scientologist - except
there are plenty of boneheaded leftists hurting themselves on vegetarian
diets too because their ideologies blind them to scientific truth the same
way politicians and the dairy lobby are trying to convince us that cow's
milk is really healthy for our children.

Who would have ever thought the healthiest item on the McDonald's menu is
the patty - well, assuming it's not fried in hydrogenated oils.

What I've done to treat myself is based on solid diagnostic bloodwork.

You will say, oh, that's a lot of B.S.

I ran out of alpha-ketoglutaric acid pills this weekend and my hands got
dry and swelled back up.  The insomnia came back and I couldn't focus long
enough to read a single newspaper article.  What's worse, I didn't want to.
This happens to me now if I run out of calcium, magnesium or any of a dozen
other pills.  In the last six months I've quite literally lost sixty pounds
without changing how much I eat or exercise.

While I may have been at death's door six months ago, I do consider myself
fortunate in that I will not have to wait until I'm sixty and riddled with
some sort of prostate cancer to find out the toll modern living has taken
on me.  By then it's too late.

You can't turn medical treatment into religion, but in the context of
discussions on cognition I thought you would find my experiences

Whether it was the mercury or the Vitamin B deficiency or some combination,
I'll never truly know.  I do know for the last few years my ability to
concentrate and read large books has been affected.  I can concentrate as
long as I'm writing, but it's become difficult to write too.  Certainly the
mathematics and computer programming skill has gone out the window.  I
never understood why.  It's more a question of inclination than ability,
but if you can't coax your toe into the water you can hardly swim the race.

I still am startled by loud sounds.  I still have days when I am fuzzier
than others.  At the absolute nadir of my condition, I stood, painfully, in
the living room trying to have a conversation with my father.  While it
took everything I had to listen to him, I knew what I wanted to say in
response but suddenly everything froze and I couldn't speak.  As soon as I
started thinking of my response, the inner voice that made me *me* was
suddenly ten feet under and gasping for air.  This lasted almost a minute.
The whole world was crawling by anyway - my perception of time had long
been screwed up - but it wasn't like one moment I had seen something and
the next minute the whole arrangement had changed.  It wasn't like being
suddenly transported into the future.  I knew my father was moving around
waiting for an answer but then again I didn't really *know* that either.
It's hard to explain.  It was like my brain skipped a beat, but that wasn't
quite it either.  True, words and memories had become inaccessible to me at
awkward moments but it's as if my speech centers had ceased to exist.

Sometimes I'd watch a stupid sitcom and get the joke a half-hour later.
The scene I had just watched would suddenly register after all that time.
It's like I had seen it and now I was finally getting around to *watching*
it.  (Forget laughing.  My facial muscles physically hurt even if I felt
like it.)

I used to blank out like this with doctors.  Sometimes, literally, no
matter how hard I tried I could not listen to people.  Sometimes I couldn't
stop talking.  Then I'd be so sluggish sitting there with doctors I
couldn't manage a word.  The best strategy I adopted when talking to
doctors was to imagine what they were saying as words typed on a screen and
then read those back to myself in my mind's eye.  That worked.  I could pay
attention and understand then.  It wasn't like rainwater rolling off the
eaves; it stuck.  I'd type what I wanted to say back and read it to them.
I found when I thought in text there were a lot fewer dropped words and a
lot fewer missed memories and a lot fewer halting conversations.  I have no
idea why I was still able to do this.

I had serious trouble reading.  While I had trouble getting the urge to sit
down and type, once I started I was fine.  If it weren't for getting online
and chatting with others I would have never straightened out certain parts
of my condition.  I could and still do write up a coherent storm.  I don't
know why that part of me was spared but sitting down, writing up lists and
trying to coordinate research really saved me.  I still download important
articles but don't read them for a month.  I wish I knew exactly what was
affecting me.  I do have faith that it will eventually go away.  I am
getting better and I've had a few brief moments here and there where I'm me

I suppose the best way to explain it is to say it's like that worst moment
you've ever had with the flu.  You role over in the middle of the night,
look at the alarm clock, see "3:30" flashing at you and you wonder why it's
dark outside and you haven't been fired for not showing up at work.  If
it's so dark, why isn't it raining?  It's that sort of confusion, except
all day long.  You can grab on to reality if you try, but it's like moving
through mud.  It's so bad you can't feel sleepy.  That's how isolated you
are from so many of the things essential to the human condition.  If
emotion and mood were sharp cutlery, then it's like trying to dine on life
with bowling balls.

If you're interested, you can read more on my condition and others in the
Yeast-L archives.

Apnea is a life-threatening injury to the jaw that can kill you suddenly in
your sleep.  It doesn't necessarily involve snoring.  If you have generic
joint pains, clicking sounds in your jaw, prematurely receding gums,
popping ears, hearing loss or circles under your eyes, please seek out a
qualified dentist for an exam.

Wade Riddick

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