Wednesday, 21 June 2017

Broccoli sprouts for all Diabetes and some COPD

This blog is about translating existing medical research into therapy for autism, but quite often the same research has clear application to other conditions.
Very often those conditions include diabetes, a common severe form of asthma (COPD - Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) and of course cancer.
Some readers of this blog are already applying some of these insights to improve their diabetes and indeed COPD. Type 2 diabetes is becoming very common and so more interest is being shown in better managing it. Sulforaphane from broccoli sprouts should benefit people with both Type1 and Type 2 diabetes, as more people are beginning to realize.

Cancer is a complex subject with many different molecular variants, but much of the science that needs to be applied is shared with autism. If you could master PAK1, RAS, PTEN, BCL2, P2X7, NRF2 etc you would be well placed to treat variants of both conditions. There is a surprising overlap between the existing drugs being repurposed for some autism and those being considered for some cancer (statins, metformin, propranolol, ivermectin etc.).

A chemical called sulforaphane, found in broccoli sprouts, has previously demonstrated an ability to reduce glucose levels in diabetic rats. Anders Rosengren of the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, and his colleagues wondered whether the same might be true for humans. To test the theory, his team gave 97 people with type 2 diabetes a concentrated dose of sulforaphane every day for three months, or a placebo. All but three people in the trial continued taking metformin. Those who didn’t take metformin were able to control their condition relatively well without it.

The concentration of sulforaphane given was around 100 times that found naturally in broccoli. “It was the same as eating around five kilograms of broccoli daily,” says Rosengren.

On average, those who received the broccoli extract saw their blood glucose reduce by 10 per cent more than those on the placebo. The extract was most effective in obese participants with “dysregulated” diabetes, whose baseline glucose levels were higher to start with.

Journal reference:

COPD is relevant to autism because it is epigenetic and features oxidative stress interfering in important biological processes, so there are some parallels with types of autism.

To ensure that the lungs function correctly, white blood cells called macrophages remove debris and bacteria that can build up in the lungs and cause infection.
This cleaning system is defective in smokers and people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) – a combination of emphysema and bronchitis – who suffer from frequent infections.

Now, researchers have figured out that a chemical pathway in the lungs called NRF2, involved in macrophage activation, is wiped out by smoking. They also found that sulforaphane, a plant chemical that is made by broccoli, cauliflower and other cruciferous vegetables when damaged, such as when chewed, can restore this pathway.

Journal reference:


  1. Peter, what do you think about mint leaf extract as GABAa modulator? I was thinking if it could have an anxiolytic effect. Did you try it?

  2. One of the commenters from a while back claimed to give their child straight garden grown mint leaf with good results. In light of this idea I briefly trailed menthol from hall's sugar free cough drops since menthol has similar GABA subunit modifying properties. I never noticed anything good or bad from the intervention but the trial was not consistent because he did not like the taste very much so we eventually dropped it.

    1. Tyler and Peter, I think that what Iam not controlling is electrical activity. The changes were generating gradually since I changed valproate by diamox, including the eventual use of Miyairi later that could have nothing to do, nervousness, hyperactivity,much more handclapping and no longer sleeps. His handwriting got worse to he point that is unreadable, he used to write much better with his pencil. My options are not varied, can´t get bumetanide, so perhaps a commbination of valproate and diamox in low doses could work better or safer than increasing the dose of any of them alone. It may seem that his electrical activity is not big deal but it is not.

    2. Valentina, best to go back to what worked well and get things back to normal.

      Then if you change things, make only one change at a time and then you can be more certain what gives a benefit.

    3. Regarding the mint/menthol:
      I remember using Vicks VapoRub (menthol, camphor, eucalyptus) as a kid when having a cold, on the chest and under my nose. (Note that it is not recommended to use in smaller kids and not near nostrils today). It always made me feel very comfortable and "safe", even though I can't remember it having any effect on coughing. Maybe it was just a psychological effect, but who knows?

    4. Thankyou Peter,I will give him one sprinkle a day of valproate with diamox, don´t want to return to high doses.

  3. Just to let people know that Vitalica Plus - the patented “Hopkins” variety broccoli seed extract is available from the manufacturer at
    Their website could use some improvement in my opinion. Also I have not tried the extract as I am trying to buy the Caudill broccoli sprouting seeds (so I can just make sprouts for salads).


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