Wednesday, 7 November 2018

Can You Remove Neuropathy Problems With 50 Pills a Day? Well This Man Did!

Today's extraordinary post from (see link below) is a personal account of how someone took drastic steps to improve his neuropathy symptoms (with success) but it has to be said...what works for one, doesn't work for everybody and however tempting his approach may be, you need to be sure that this sort of approach fits your own personal neuropathy situation. Okay, warnings aside, this is an extraordinary story that is certainly worth a read and some careful thinking afterwards. First you have to have this man's dedication and secondly, you have to have a bottomless wallet!! Even then, there are no guarantees but you know that already don't you! Give it a read (maybe more than once) and think about your own situation very carefully - it's certainly tempting to follow this route but as a final warning, watch out for clashes with other drugs you may be taking for other conditions. Furthermore, none of these options are 'quack cures' - they're all recommended as treatments for neuropathy symptoms but individually and perhaps not en masse!

The fifty-pills-a-day neuropathy cure
Larry Feign 5 November 2018

You read the title correctly. I have nearly cured myself of peripheral neuropathy, and this is my secret formula:

Strenuous exercise for one hour each day
A strict diet (no cheating!)
Fifty pills a day
And I should add…
No drugs. None. Zero.
The punchline

After five months of self-treatment:
My fingers have recovered 95 percent of their feeling.
My feet have recovered by 70 or 75 percent.

Plus unexpected side benefits:

I’ve shed 20 pounds of excess belly fat and am close to my ideal body weight.
My LDL cholesterol levels have dropped from “borderline dangerous” to right-in-the-middle “normal” (after throwing my statin drugs—the suspected cause of my PN—in the garbage).
I have more energy and a clearer mind than I’ve felt in years.
My wife says: “You’re better looking these days.” (She would say that).

It works for me. Please note that I said for me. I hope you’ll be inspired by my findings and find a cure for you.

Search for a cure

My family doctor told me it was untreatable. The hospital neurologist said there’s no cure. Doom-and-gloom neuropathy support forums spoke of nothing but pain and drugs, pain and drugs, assuring me my condition would only get worse and worse until I was reduced to a throbbing crippled lump of flesh mainlining six-syllable painkillers.

“Cure Neuropathy” books told me nothing I hadn’t learned after a day of web browsing. Curiously, three such books, under three different author names, published in three different years, have the identical content. Are we being scammed? Various neuropathy clinics boasted impressive results in convincing YouTube infomercials, but the nearest one to me was 8000 miles/13,000 kilometers away. No one in my hemisphere seemed to know a thing about this terrifying disease. I was on my own.

To make a long story short, I did the research. Not just hopping onto the first robot-voice YouTube video touting this or that miracle remedy. I set aside my work—I couldn’t concentrate anyway—and did deep research for three months straight. One nutrient at a time, I followed the information trail and read every study, report, and anecdote I could find. My sources were scientists, doctors, naturopaths, homeopaths, Chinese medical practitioners, and people like you and me, obsessed with finding a cure. I cross-checked and verified, and compared notes. Sadly, there is a lot of lazy reporting on “Doctor Google”. Someone heard something somewhere, then someone else quotes it and it somehow becomes established fact. Weeding out the nonsense took up 90 percent of my time.

I came up with a list of natural supplements. Then, cautiously, one substance at a time, I became my own lab rat, feeling my body’s reactions—good and bad. Based on my own observations, I’ve tweaked, added to, and deleted from my list over the past many months. I consulted a naturopathic doctor, who studied my course of supplements, told me I’d pretty much gotten it right, except for a few suggested tweaks. I felt vindicated.

Maybe I’m overdoing it. Many of these may be unnecessary, but they haven’t done me any harm. Five months since starting this course, my neuropathy is almost gone.

I am not a medical professional. This article is not medical advice. I am not responsible for any unwanted reactions you may experience by consuming any of these supplements.
THIS COURSE OF SUPPLEMENTS WORKS FOR ME. In no way do I imply that the same will cure or improve your condition.
I am not taking any painkillers or other medications. Therefore I have done no investigation as to interactions between any of these substances and any medications not on my list. Many of the substances on this list may have interactions with your own medications. For example, several have blood-thinning properties or will lower blood sugar levels.
Don’t take my word for it. Do your own research. Consult a naturopath or other open-minded health care provider you trust.

My fifty pills (and other stuff) a day

Upon waking up (7:30 am)
Folate (Vitamin B9) (5-methyltetrahydrofolate) · 1 x 400 mcg
Vitamin C (calcium ascorbate) + Rutin · 1 x 1000 mg
Zinc + Copper · 1 x 15 mg / 1.5 mg
Vitamin B12 (methylcobalamin) · 2 x 1000 mcg

Thirty minutes before breakfast (7:45 am)

R-Lipoic Acid (sodium stabilized) · 3 x 200 mg

L-Arginine + L-Citrulline · 2 x 250 mg / 250 mg

Hawthorn Extract · 1 x 300 mg

Quercetin + Bromelain · 2 x 800 mg / 165 mg

Add to breakfast smoothie (8:15 am)
Acetyl L-Carnitine · 2 x 500 mg

Sulfur (Methyl-Sulfonyl-Methane) · 1 x 1000 mg

Turmeric · ¼ teaspoon

After breakfast (8:30 am)
Vitamin D3 · 1 x 2000 iu
Vitamin E (D-Alpha-Tocopherol + D-Tocotrienols) · 1 x 50 mg
Coenzyme Q10 (Ubiquinol) · 2 x 100 mg
Evening Primrose Oil · 1 x 500 mg
Omega-3 + Astaxanthin (Krill Oil) · 1 x 1000 mg
Black Pepper Extract (Piperine) · 1 x 10 mg

Rhodiola Rosea · 1 x 500 mg
St. John’s Wort · 1 x 450 mg

After lunch (12:30 pm)

Thiamine (Vitamin B1) (Benfotiamine) · 1 x 250 mg
Niacin (Vitamin B3) (Nicotinamide) · 1 x 500 mg
Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5) · 1 x 500 mg
St. John’s Wort · 1 x 450 mg
Spirulina · 6 x 500 mg

Thirty minutes before dinner (7:00 pm)
R-Lipoic Acid (sodium stabilized) · 3 x 200 mg
L-Arginine + L-Citrulline · 2 x 250 mg / 250 mg
Hawthorn Extract · 1 x 300 mg
Quercetin + Bromelain · 2 x 800 mg / 165 mg

After dinner (8:00 pm)

Vitamin E (D-Alpha-Tocopherol + D-Tocotrienols) · 1 x 50 mg
Coenzyme Q10 (Ubiquinol) · 2 x 100 mg
Vitamin K2 (Menaquinone-7) · 200 mcg (2 x 100 mcg)
Omega-3 + Astaxanthin (Krill Oil) · 1 x 1000 mg
Black Pepper Extract (Piperine) · 1 x 10 mg
St. John’s Wort · 1 x 450 mg
Turmeric · ¼ teaspoon

Before bed (10:30 pm)

Folate (Vitamin B9) (5-methyltetrahydrofolate) · 1 x 400 mcg
Vitamin C (calcium ascorbate) + Rutin · 1 x 1000 mg
Magnesium Malate · 1 x 425 mg
Vitamin B12 (methylcobalamin) · 2 x 1000 mcg
Ashwagandha · 1 x 670 mg

Bacopa Monnieri · 1 x 750 mg

See below for descriptions of each of these substances. But first, to answer your question:

Isn’t that kind of…um…overdoing it?

Perhaps. But a drastic illness calls for drastic measures. I’m sure that some of these supplements are essential, while some may be unnecessary. But I don’t know which is which. All I know is that it’s working.


AirBnB closet on a recent trip to Portugal It does make travel a bit of a nuisance. I need extra luggage just for all my pills (by the way, the photo at the top of this page is my post-breakfast meal during a recent extended stay in central Portugal; and that’s water, not wine).

I don’t consider this to be long-term therapy. I am concerned about the effect on my liver. That’s why, at some point soon, I’ll gradually cut down, while listening to my body. But there is no question in my mind that this aggressive therapy has given my health the drastic boost it desperately needs.

Isn’t a daily multivitamin good enough?

No. No. No. Absolutely not!

Vitamin skeptics often remark that taking vitamins and supplements results in little more than expensive urine. And they have a point! Many vitamins are not well absorbed by our bodies; they might be destroyed by stomach acids or simply not pass the various cellular barriers to get into our blood or nerves. That’s why it’s important to pay attention to which form of supplements we take, when to take them, what to combine them with, and what not to combine them with.

In later posts I’ll write in detail about many of the supplements on my list. But for now, here’s a brief summary of each, which explains which form of each nutrient is least likely to become expensive urine.

I’ve grouped them as follows in terms of importance (to me):

· Absolutely essential
· Important

· Helpful (this does not mean ‘optional’; it only means these are the first ones I will experiment with lowering doses or removing from the list. For now, every item on my list is essential to me.)

Absolutely Essential

Vitamin B12 (Methylcobalamin)


Of all the supplements that help treat neuropathy, B12 is at the top of the list. It is required for building and maintaining the coating around our nerves called the myelin sheath—which is exactly what our immune systems are attacking when we have neuropathy. It has been well-documented that B12 deficiency is a leading factor in causing neuropathy. Vegetarians and vegans are highly prone to B12 deficiency, as are most people as we get older. Thus, B12 supplementation is crucial. The trouble is, B12 is not well absorbed in supplement form. This is why high megadoses are recommended (it’s water soluble, so it won’t endanger your liver). Important: Most B12 on the market is cyanocobalamin, which is hardly absorbed at all into the bloodstream, and is really not worth taking. There is a more potent form of B12 called methylcobalamin, which is far better assimilated into the bloodstream, but is of course more expensive. Yet even with methylcobalamin, absorption is weak when swallowed as a pill, as some of it is destroyed by stomach acids on the way down. The best way to take B12 is through injection. However, sublingual ingestion is second-best: this means holding it under your tongue and letting it get absorbed through the mucus membranes while it slowly dissolves in your mouth. Should be taken with Folate, preferably on an empty stomach.

R-Lipoic Acid (sodium stabilized)

The other superstar supplement for neuropathy treatment, and the most expensive. One study after another has linked significant improvements in neuropathy symptoms with the use of Lipoic Acid. Specifically, it repairs nerves by enhancing the delivery of blood, oxygen, and glucose into nerve fibers, and eases neuropathic numbness and pain. Countless doctors and patients testify that Lipoic Acid works miracles.

There are four types of Lipoic Acid: S-Lipoic Acid (S-LA), a synthetic form; R-Lipoic Acid (R-LA; the R stands for Racemic), a natural form derived from plants; Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA), which is a 50:50 blend of S-LA and R-LA; and Stabilized R-Lipoic Acid (Na-R-LA or Na-R-ALA; the Na means sodium), which is R-LA combined with sodium salts. The synthetic form alone has little effect on the nerves, while R-Lipoic Acid performs the miracles. Trouble is, R-LA is highly unstable and can deteriorate so rapidly at anything above room temperature, that it can lose all potency between your mouth and your gut. Stability is greatly improved by combining R-LA and S-LA into Alpha Lipoic Acid, the most common form on the market. However, the newer process of sodium-stabilized pure R-LA is much better at maintaining potency all the way through the gut and into the bloodstream. Manufacturers of stabilized, or “bio-enhanced”, Na-R-Lipoic Acid, claim ten times greater bioavailablity than Alpha Lipoic Acid. One medical expert suggests that Evening Primrose Oil enhances absorption even further. Caution: Possible side effects include lowered blood sugar levels, upset stomach, or temporary skin rash. Must be taken on an empty stomach at least 20 minutes before eating, with Hawthorn and possibly with Evening Primrose Oil.

Thiamine (Vitamin B1) (Benfotiamine)

An effective weapon for reducing inflammation and neuropathy symptoms, and to increase nerve conduction. Again, not all Thiamines are alike. Benfotiamine is nearly four times more bioavailable than other forms. Caution: Thiamine is poorly absorbed in the presence of high glucose levels; therefore, diabetics are sometimes recommended to pair it with Pyroxidine (Vitamin B6), which regulates glucose. See below for my reasons for not including Pyroxidine on my supplement list.

Niacin (Vitamin B3) (Nicotinamide / Niacinamide)

Niacin plays a big role in the synthesis of neurotransmitters, and just plain gives a boost to the nervous system. Niacin comes in three forms: Nicotinic Acid, usually labeled as plain Niacin, the one which makes your face tingle; Inosotol Hexanicotinate, marketed as “No-Flush Niacin”; and Nicotinamide (also called Niacinamide). Of the three, only Nicotinamide repairs nerves. Not only that, but it energizes the whole nervous system. Various sub-forms include Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide (NAD) and Nicotinamide Riboside, both of which are jaw-dropping expensive, so I stick to an inexpensive product labeled as Niacinimide, which our bodies convert to NAD anyway.

Pantothenic Acid (Vitamin B5)

A shortage of this B vitamin will cause “pins and needles” in fingers and feet, and is a listed cause of neuropathy. Pantothenic Acid is involved in many important body functions, including formation and support of nerve endings and small blood vessels. While it is available in a number of foods, Pantothenic Acid, like B12, is water soluble, so safe to supplement in higher doses.

Folate (Vitamin B9) (5-methyltetrahydrofolate)

Folate deficiency is linked to B12 and iron deficiency, and is also a contributing cause of neuropathy. Because of Folate’s complex interactions with other nutrients, deficiency can be caused by other factors than simply not getting enough from food. Folate therapy has been shown to improve nerve conductivity. Again, not all Folates are alike, so it’s best to find biologically active versions rather than cheap folic acid. Should be taken with Vitamin B12 and Vitamin C.

Vitamin C (calcium ascorbate) + Rutin

Along with its well-known benefits as an antioxidant and immune booster, Vitamin C, when combined with Rutin, promotes repair to the myelin sheathing of nerves. Vitamin C is also essential for the absorption of many other nutrients. Although cheap Vitamin C as ascorbic acid is helpful, other forms such as calcium ascorbate are more powerful. Combining with Rutin and bioflavinoids (another good partner to Vitamin C) is essential for neuropathy treatment. Fortunately, many of the better Vitamin C supplements include both Rutin and bioflavinoids. Should be taken with Folate, B12, and Zinc.

Coenzyme Q10 (Ubiquinol)

This essential enzyme boosts cell energy and protects mitochondria throughout our bodies, enabling damaged cells to more easily repair themselves. That especially goes for nerve cells. In a study on neuropathic rats CoQ10 treatment completely restored nerve conduction to the same levels as healthy rats. If it’s good enough for rodents…well, it may not be good enough for me. As with nearly everything on this list, there are different types of CoQ10: Ubiquinone and Ubiquinol. Both are good. The former converts in the body to the latter, so taking Ubiquinol is more direct and efficient. Must be taken during or after a meal containing healthy oils or fats, and with pepper or Piperine for proper absorption.

Acetyl L-Carnitine

An amino acid often used by bodybuilders to supercharge mental focus and fat loss, and for pain relief. For us, it’s a powerful neuroprotector, which shields nerves from further damage. Most promising of all, studies suggest it works to actually regenerate nerves. I buy it in bulk powder form, which is significantly less expensive than pills, though it has a very sour taste.

Among its other benefits as a “super food”, turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory and immune booster, which has been shown to reduce neuropathy symptoms. Many articles recommend taking a concentrated extract of Curcumin, one of the major beneficial substances in turmeric, but I disagree. There is evidence that ‘full-spectrum’ turmeric (meaning: the whole root, not an extract) is more effective for treating neuropathy. That means, the cheap turmeric powder you can buy at Asian groceries is better for you than an expensive extract. Must be taken with pepper or Piperine for proper absorption.

Omega-3 + Astaxanthin (Krill Oil)

There may be some recent controversy over whether Omega-3 supplements are actually beneficial for cardiovascular health, but there is clinical proof that Omega-3 revitalizes damaged nerves. Not all Omega-3 fatty acids are alike. Yes, flax seeds and most nuts contain an Omega-3 called ALA, but ALA has little effect on nerve health. Sorry vegetarians, but we want EPA and DHA, which are found in oily fish like salmon, cod, and sardines. Recent evidence points to Krill oil as a superior source. Krill are tiny crustaceans which live in every ocean (blue whales subsist on a diet of Krill, and you don’t hear them complaining of numb fingers). EPA and DHA from Krill are better assimilated into our bodies, have lower chance of heavy metal pollution found in many fish, and are more sustainably harvested. Krill oil also naturally contains Asaxanthin, an antioxidant which makes Omega-3 oils more effective. If taking Omega-3 from non-Krill sources, then Asaxanthin supplementation is a good idea.

Black Pepper Extract (Piperine)

Piperine is the substance in pepper that makes it spicy. It also protects certain nutrients on their journey through the acid swamp in our stomachs. It therefore increases the absorption rate for such things as Coenzyme Q10 and Turmeric, making them up to ten times as potent. Without pepper or Piperine, you’re wasting most of the therapeutic effect of these other nutrients. You can take a small amount of pepper (black, chili, or cayenne are all fine) with your other supplements, or get inexpensive Piperine in extract form. Must be taken with Coenzyme Q10 and Turmeric.

Vitamin D3

Vitamin D deficiency is a common contributing factor to neuropathy. Our bodies synthesize their own Vitamin D from sunlight on our skin, and as more of us lead entirely indoor lifestyles, D deficiency is a rising problem. Thus, the best therapy is to go outdoors with some exposed skin for at least half an hour every day. But a hospital study concluded that high doses of D3 over a limited period actually help to repair nerve damage caused by neuropathy. Should be taken with Vitamin E. Should also be taken with Vitamin K2, either at the same time or (as some nutritionists believe) eight hours apart.

Vitamin E (D-Alpha-Tocopherol + D-Tocotrienols)

Vitamin E supplementation can reduce neuropathy symptoms, including pain and numbness, by protecting nerve cell membranes and mitochondria. It also promotes nerve regeneration. Start by eating Vitamin E rich foods such as sunflower seeds and wheat germ. As for supplements, be careful to get one from natural (preferably non-soy) sources. There are two main kinds of Vitamin E, Tocopherol and Tocotrienol, and each comes in Alpha, Beta, Delta, and Gamma forms, all of which are good for nerves in different ways. Cheap Vitamin E supplements are synthetic Tocopherols, sometimes labeled DL-Alpha-Tocopherol. Better to get the natural form, D-Alpha-Tocopheral (without the L). You can also find Tocotrienol capsules. A supplement which combines both (and preferably contains all four of the Alpha, Beta, Delta, and Gamma forms of either Tocopherol or Tocotrienol) will be the most effective. Must be taken with Evening Primrose Oil.

Vitamin K2 (Menaquinone-7)

Vitamin K2 is directly involved in the health, growth, and repair of nerve cells. A human trial indicated that neuropathy patients tend to have low K2, and that K2 supplements noticeably improved their neuropathy symptoms. The most effective form of K2 is Menaquinone-7, also called K2-7. Don’t confuse Vitamin K1 and K2, since their properties are completely different. Vitamins K2 and D3 are considered a “dynamic duo”, enhancing each other’s effect on the nerves, bones, and arteries. The duo is often packaged together. However, some nutritionists suggest that taking them eight hours apart is the proper timing, so that’s what I’m trying for now.

Magnesium Malate

Magnesium is on every health practitioner’s must-have list for treating neuropathy. So why did it make me feel worse? This is a case of “listen to your body”! My naturopath originally prescribed 850 mg twice daily. Whenever I took it my fingers flared up like icy fire within minutes. I cut it out entirely for a month, then tried 425 mg once daily, and have had no adverse reaction. Why is it so strongly recommended? Many people with neuropathy have a Magnesium deficiency. Magnesium supplementation helps to improve recovery and regeneration of nerves, as well as reduce pain in general. As with so many supplements, there is a confusing variety of Magnesium supplements. What little guidance I found points to Magnesium Malate as the preferred source for nerve treatment.

Zinc + Copper

Zinc is a tricky one. It is absolutely necessary to protect against nerve damage. Zinc deficiency has been linked to neuropathy, yet too much zinc can be mildly toxic. While many foods such as beans, oats, and nuts are rich in zinc, short-to-medium-term zinc supplementation is often used for stimulating nerve healing and improving nerve conductivity. Warning: excess zinc can deplete copper in your body. Any zinc supplement should include copper at a 10:1 ratio. I prefer a supplement containing both, made from fermented vegetables and herbs. Should be taken with Vitamin C.

Hawthorn Extract

Hawthorn berries contain a powerful antioxidant, which also promotes blood circulation into the smallest blood vessels. Many naturopaths consider Hawthorn to be a synergistic herb to be taken with Lipoic Acid in order to enhance its effect. Caution: Can reduce blood pressure. Must be taken with Lipoic Acid (ALA, R-LA, or R-ALA).

Quercetin + Bromelain
Quercetin is a wonderful natural antihistamine, derived from onion skins, which alleviates (among other allergic symptoms) itchy, swollen ankles, commonly associated with neuropathy. Its anti-inflammatory effects also reduce neuropathic pain. Best of all, it has neuroprotective qualities that shield nerves from further damage, and has been shown to help regrow damaged nerves. In two separate studies, neuropathic rats were completely cured of neuropathy with Quercetin treatment! Bromelain, derived from pineapples, has similar antihistamine effects. For a detailed discussion of Quercetin, see my post, The Onion Skin Cure.

Evening Primrose Oil

Not just for women! Evening Primrose Oil has been found to improve nerve function and to relieve neuropathic pain. One diabetes specialist claims that it also enhances the effects of Alpha Lipoic Acid (or Na-R-Lipoic Acid). Must be taken with Vitamin E. Should possibly be taken with Alpha Lipoic Acid or Na-R-Lipoic Acid.

St. John’s Wort (Watch out for interactions with medications here - esp. for HIV patients Ed:)

Best known as a natural antidepressant; that alone makes it worthwhile for anyone with neuropathy. That’s certainly why I take it, along with Rhodiola Rosea. But St. John’s Wort is reported to have neuroprotective properties and has also been proven to reduce neuropathic pain in laboratory rats. Caution: St. John’s Wort increases the skin’s sensitivity to sunlight. If one is prone to sunburn or melanoma, precautions must be taken when going outdoors. Can be taken with Rhodiola Rosea—after consulting a health practitioner!—but absolutely should not be taken in combination with antidepressant drugs.

Rhodiola Rosea

Rhodiola Rosea, an Arctic flowering plant, has been popular for centuries in northern Europe as a natural mood stabilizer and antidepressant (as well as anti-diabetic, anti-viral, and anti-cancer properties). In recent studies, extracts of Rhodiola tested positively in aiding nerve regeneration. So, two benefits in one supplement. Can be taken with St. John’s Wort—after consulting a health practitioner!—but absolutely should not be taken in combination with antidepressant drugs.
Helpful (does not mean optional)

L-Arginine + L-Citrulline
These amino acids are two sides of one coin. Our bodies convert L-Citrulline into L-Arginine. Taking both together extends the supplement’s effect. L-Arginine activates Nitric Oxide, which helps to dilate and maintain the flexibility of small blood vessels and increase blood flow into the tiniest capillaries. The more blood in those extremities, the more nourishment is delivered to the tiny nerve endings. Although acknowledged as good for cardiovascular health, opinion is divided as to whether L-Arginine is truly beneficial for neuropathy patients. Caution: These can reduce blood pressure and blood sugar levels. Diabetics may require an adjustment in insulin treatment. Should not be taken with blood pressure medications or Saw Palmetto.

Sulfur (Methyl-Sulfonyl-Methane)

This one is an educated guess on my part. MSM is a powerful anti-inflammatory which generally accelerates healing and flushing of toxins, all of which are desirable for neuropathy. What makes it special is that MSM helps to normalize collagen, which not only makes your skin look nicer, but collagen strengthens the epidermis layers where the tiniest nerve endings reside. Low levels of collagen expose and weaken those tiny nerve extremities, whereas a mild boost in collagen promotes healing of impaired nerves and increases tactile sense in the fingertips. So, putting two and two together, my guess is that MSM may benefit my neuropathy. Should be taken with Vitamin C.

This blue green algae is a highly nutritious, extremely easy-to-digest natural food, rich in Beta Carotene (Vitamin A). It’s also an excellent source of Gamma-Linolenic Acid. GLA strengthens neural membranes and promotes peripheral nerve growth. Human trials demonstrate that GLA reduces neuropathy symptoms and increases nerve conduction. Why do I list this under Spirulina rather than a separate listing for GLA? Because Spirulina delivers its nutrients in such an easily assimilable form that, in my opinion, it’s better than taking GLA supplements. Note: Spirulina has a reputation as a source of B12. This is not quite true. The B12 in Spirulina is not bioavailable to humans, so it is not a substitute for other B12 supplementation. Caution: Spirulina is cultivated in open ponds. It is highly susceptible to absorbing pollutants from the water. I therefore avoid any Spirulina sourced from China (which unfortunately includes most commercially available Spirulina). The best Spirulina, in my mind, is grown in Hawaii, but it’s also the most expensive. I currently use a product grown in an allegedly pristine environment in northern India.


Derived from a flowering shrub, Aswagandha is used as a wonder cure for many ailments in Ayurvedic medicine. Three separate scientific studies showed that Ashwagandha helps to rebuild damaged nerve synapses and heal diseased nerve cells. It’s being hailed as a possible preventative for Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative diseases, though no specific study has been done on neuropathy. Seems promising, though. Must be taken with Bacopa Monnieri.

Bacopa Monnieri
Another Ayurvedic herbal cure, otherwise known as Water Hyssop, is mainly prescribed for memory and intelligence, by boosting communication between neurons. It does so by promoting the growth of peripheral nerve endings, called dendrites. Sounds good to me! It is also considered a synergistic herb, often prescribed with Ashwagandha. It can have a mild sedative effect, which is why I schedule it for bedtime. Must be taken with Ashwagandha.

Supplements I don’t use

Pyridoxine (Vitamin B6)

Vitamin B6 is often listed beside B12 as beneficial for alleviating neuropathy symptoms. Many sources recommend pairing Benfotiamine with Vitamin B6, especially for diabetics. But beware: B6 is tricky, in that either a deficiency or an excess can actually cause peripheral neuropathy. Since B6 is available in a large variety of common foods, B6 deficiency is rare in most people. I won’t risk overdosing myself with B6 supplements. If I were diabetic, I might consider B6. Note that many multi and B-complex vitamins contain shockingly massive overdoses of B6.

Ginkgo Biloba
Often recommended for neuropathy because of its effectiveness in increasing blood flow into the tiniest blood capillaries, which of course feed the tiniest nerves. But this function is also served by Hawthorn and L-Citrulline. The trouble with Ginkgo Biloba is that it also lowers blood pressure. There are enough blood pressure-lowering items on my list, that taking too many could be dangerous.
Pill substitutes

Vitamin D3

On days when I spend at least thirty minutes outdoors in direct sunlight, I really don’t need D3 supplements. Care is required, though, since St. Johns Wort increases susceptibility to sunburn, so I take direct sunlight in moderation.


As explained in The Onion Skin Cure, onion skins are such a good natural source of Quercetin that I only take the pills if I haven’t saved up enough skins. A small amount of 200 mg (a teaspoon or so) tossed in a smoothie or other meal is enough. They’re practically tasteless.


I don’t advocate taking Turmeric in pill form. I only use high quality organic turmeric powder.

Black Pepper (Piperine)

Best to simply sprinkle a liberal amount black pepper on a morning omelet, or toss some chilis or cayenne pepper in a dinner stew, within 30 minutes of taking turmeric and Coenzyme Q10. I only take Piperine tablets on those occasions when I don’t eat a spicy meal.

How much does all this cost???

It isn’t cheap. I calculated what I spend per month (30-day supply) for all of the above, using today’s exchange rate:

US$332.57 = $11.09/day

CA$434.42 = $14.48/day

£255.29 = £8.51/day

€291.92 = €9.73/day

AU$472.52 = $15.75/day

NZ$518.68 = $17.29/day

HK$2628.65 = $87.62/day

Prices range from highly expensive Na-R-Lipoic Acid (US$96/month) to incredibly cheap MSM Sulfur powder (US$0.08/month).

That’s a lot of money, to be sure.

I faced a choice: do I want to hang on to my money or reclaim my health? My neuropathy was affecting my work as a writer and artist. I couldn’t even feel the keyboard! I fell three months behind on a major project. I had more to lose financially by not spending eleven bucks a day on pills.

How much are you spending on those prescription drugs that aren’t curing you? How much were (or are) you spending on junk food, soda pop, corn chips, candy, biscuits, ice cream, and alcohol, that you gave up (or should have) due to neuropathy? If you cut out one Starbucks coffee a day, there’s nearly half the supplement budget.

As a reminder: No, a budget multivitamin won’t do you much good. Those don’t contain the right forms or the correct portions of of the nutrients you need.

Remember that the above supplement course is mine alone. Your condition, and your own research, will likely result in a different course. You may still spend a lot on pills, but at the end of six months you might end up like me, “feeling like a million bucks”. How much is that worth?

How long does it take to work?

For the first two months I felt little effect. In fact, I got worse. I fell down in the middle of a lunchtime crowd on a pedestrian bridge in the central business district because my feet hurt so much, that I almost—almost—crawled to the doctor to beg for a painkiller, knowing that becoming drug dependent would screw up my head, ending my ability to think and write clearly, the end of my career. Instead I stood up and kept walking, and increased the doses of some of my supplements.

For the next two months, my condition stabilized. Whenever I took a set of pills, my numbness would subside temporarily, then return after an hour. It was promising, but I felt no lasting effect.

Then in month four, feeling gradually returned to the little finger of each hand. It was a breakthrough. I felt like howling at the moon. A couple weeks later the numbness and chill in my ring fingers came and went in slow waves, then the numbness subsided for good. My feet felt less like they were treading on balloons; I sensed the coolness of our tile floors for the first time.

In the fifth month, things started to improve rapidly. By the time I left for an extended writing sojourn abroad, most of the feeling had returned to both hands, and the numb spots on my feet had contracted to my toes and the balls of my feet. I was elated!

It’s too soon to stop, of course. I expect to continue this treatment for at least one year, probably two years, adjusting, evaluating, feeling my body’s responses, and adjusting some more along the way.

Are they really all necessary?

Many of these supplements appear to do the same thing: dilate small blood vessels, repair nerve endings. I presume they all do so at a small pace, using different biochemical mechanisms. By stacking them, I may have sped up the process.

As for their cumulative effect on the rest of my body, I look at it this way: many of the human trials of individual substances lasted for six months, and I’m not there yet. Many anecdotal reports about neuropathy recovery mention time frames of six months just to start with, ranging to two years. So for now, it’s too early to worry. I did have a full medical examination just a few weeks ago, and my liver function was very slightly raised, but far below any warning levels. I don’t sense any physical issues. Other than residual numbness in my feet, I actually feel healthier than in many years. I will continue to monitor and adjust.
What brands are best?

I put a massive effort into comparing supplement products for their ingredients, reputations, reviews, and of course value for money. In many cases I have tried and switched products. The link just below contains the latest list of all the supplements I am actually using for myself. You can see which brands and products I use, examine the ingredients, read other users’ reviews, and compare with competing products.

Peripheral Art Neuropathy Supplement List

Please be aware that this is an affiliate link for iHerb. My purpose for this blog, and this post, is not to sell you anything; my motivation is to share with you my hard work and my joy in finding a cure for my own neuropathy, in the hope that you’ll be inspired by my experience. But yes, I do get some small pocket change if you buy anything from the list. You also get a discount by using this link. I’m perfectly happy if you only use the list as a reference.

Pills are not the whole cure

Finally, I emphasize again: supplements alone haven’t cured me. I attribute my remarkable recovery in equal parts to:
Strenuous exercise for one hour a day;
Dietary choices and restrictions, which I strictly adhere to, plus a lot of water;
The supplements on this list.

In future posts I’ll describe my exercise and diet regimens. For now I’ve taken enough of your time.


I’m still learning! If you have any corrections, disagreements, experiences with these or other supplements you wish to share, or additional information about any of the above, please please please tell me in the comments below. Be aware: as a writer and sometimes editor, I reserve the right to correct any errors in spelling or punctuation in your message. Please no advertisements or insults.

I wish you a speedy recovery from the torment of peripheral neuropathy.

Gorgeous sunset seen from my room in Evoramonte, Portugal, where most of this post was written.

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