Can a dietary supplement made from a substance found in tobacco plants help ease your chronic pain?
Yes, according to the makers of a product called "Anatabloc."
"I'm just so excited, I've got to tell everybody about it," says Cheryl Reilly.
Reilly is a Midland resident who spent years suffering from Crohn's Disease and Fibromyalgia. Now she claims her days of persistent pain are behind her. She credits a dietary supplement known as Anatabloc.
"My husband could not even touch my skin," Reilly explains, "I mean it was just too painful for anyone to even hug me."
Reilly and her husband have been married for 22 years and they have two daughters in college. Every day was a struggle for her when she was dealing the chronic pain.
"Oh, it was horrible," Reilly said. "I mean I would be in bed and think I was fine. I would get up to walk across the room to leave my bedroom and take two steps and I would be so exhausted and in so much pain I would just crawl back in bed."
Reilly took part in a clinical trial of Anatabloc under the care of Dr. Dale Wilson. He is in charge of the local portion of a national study on Anatabloc.
"At this stage in my career, to be doing something like this is really a thrilling for me," said Dr. Wilson.
The creators of Anatabloc promote the supplement for anti-inflammatory support of the immune system. This is potentially helpful for a variety of conditions.
"Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, autism, epilepsy, schizophrenia - things that we never before had any idea what the etiology of the disease could be. Heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, inflammatory disease of the bowels like Crohn's disease, [the list goes] on and on. And one of the most intriguing deceases is fibromyalgia," said Dr. Wilson.
Anatabloc, which comes in pill or lozenge form, is based on a substance called "Anatabine" that is found in tobacco plants.
That's right tobacco. After you take a pill, it enters your body and interacts with a protein in your cells.
The resulting cell adopts a natural anti-inflammatory process in the body. Researchers say it's very effective and promising in the battle against chronic pain.
"The inflammation is gone which helps the Crohn's," Reilly said.
Dr. Wilson explains further, "Anatabloc turns that chronic low grade inflammation off. That's why people with Crohn's disease, fibromyalgia show a marked response. From what I have been doing clinically, from what I've seen, that's one of its most effective areas.
Right now you can only purchase Anatabloc online on the company's website. A box contains 10 containers, each holding 20 tablets. One box is being sold for just under $100.
While the manufacturer touts Anatabloc as revolutionary against chronic inflammation, some researchers say it's a bit premature to reach that conclusion.
Dr. Ed Rosick, an expert in alternative medicine at Michigan State's College of Osteopathic Medicine explains its safety and effectiveness.
"There is just not enough information to say whether it will work or won't work. Again, it seems to be a relatively safe substance, it's something found in tomatoes and peppers things people eat all the time," Dr. Rosick said. "On the other hand, will it do them any good at $100 for a 20 day supply - we can't say that."
None of that matters right now to Cheryl Reilly. She has a new career and is out enjoying life again - pain free.
"Oh my gosh, yes, I'm always excited about life everybody wonders why I'm always so happy," Reilly said. "It's just limitless, it's so exciting! It's just amazing."
There is still time to get involved with the clinical trials if you have ten weeks to devote to the study. Just call the office of Dr. Dale Wilson at 810-342-1725 to get started.
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