In this article, we discuss a type of chronic illness called Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome, or POTS for short. There are several types of dysautonomias, and we are primarily focusing on POTS — a disorder of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) which manages things your body does without having to think about them, like regulating your heart rate, digestion, blood flow and so on.
In this post, we'll look at common symptoms and a non-conventional therapy that's making all the difference in this rising autoimmune disease.
What is POTS (Dysautonomia)?
POTS stands for Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome, a condition where a person faints when they stand up quickly. Along with fourteen other kinds of dysfunctional autonomic nervous system varieties, called "Dysautonomia", it cripples an estimated 70 million people worldwide today.
Dysautonomia refers to a group of medical conditions caused by problems with the autonomic nervous system (ANS). This part of your nervous system, the autonomic nervous system, controls involuntary body functions such as blood flow.
Dysautonomia affects an estimated 70 million people worldwide, with 85% of them being female and roughly half experiencing symptoms before the age of 19.
There are fifteen types of Dysautonomia. The most common (by a long shot) is POTS with NCS (neurocardiogenic syncope, or fainting).
Your autonomic nervous system (ANS) is the part of you that works your vital organs without you thinking about it. Like, maintaining a constant internal temperature, regulating your breathing, keeping blood pressure steady, and moderating your heart rate.
Dysautonomias are states where these automatic functions no longer work properly.
Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS)
Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) is a condition that affects blood flow. POTS causes symptoms such as lightheadedness, fainting, cardiovascular issues, breathing problems and an uncomfortable, rapid increase in heart rate as a result of standing up from a reclining position… which are relieved by sitting or lying back down.
POTS Neurocardiogenic Syncope (NCS)
The presenting symptom of POTS is fainting, also called syncope. Syncope affects tens of millions of people worldwide and it can occur only occasionally or it may be frequent enough to disrupt a person’s daily life.
A Simple Explanation of POTS (Dysautonomia)
Gravity naturally pulls the blood downward, but a healthy ANS adjusts the heartbeat and muscle tightness to prevent blood pooling in the legs and feet, and to ensure blood flow to the brain.
NCS (POTS) means the nervous system is failing to control this. The blood pressure is miserably low and the heart overworks to try to increase blood pressure without the help of muscles contracting and blood vessels constricting to move the blood up to the brain. This temporary loss of blood circulation in the brain causes a person with POTS to pass out or faint.
Common POTS Dysautonomia Symptoms
POTS can impact people differently, but here’s a grab bag of all the common POTS symptoms:
These symptoms can occur in a range of combinations, making dysautonomia a difficult condition for doctors to diagnose.
The following are known to trigger syncope (fainting) for people with this autoimmune condition:
- Alcohol consumption
- Concentrated sugar consumption
- Very warm environments
- Tight clothing
How to Treat Pots: A New Treatment Plan
Medications such as beta-blockers (Midodrine) and pacemakers may be used to treat persistent or severe cases of NCS.
But what if the answer to all this nervous system dysfunction lay in the gut microbiome?
Notice that alcohol consumption is a trigger. And although most teens and young adults do not drink alcohol regularly, POTS is on the rise among this demographic. It’s also curious to me that people with this condition do better if they watch their consumption of sugars.
Because all autoimmune diseases, Dysautonomia and its fifteen varieties included, begin in the gut. Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine made this claim thousands of years ago (400 BC).
Once friendly bacteria are destroyed by any one of eight different risk factors, simple sugars in the diet feed opportunistic microbes in the gut which then produce enough internal alcohols to make you feel a bit tipsy and trigger POTS symptoms to fire.
What people all over the world are discovering is, when they restore "health to the navel" by repairing leaky gut syndrome and removing the majority of acid-producing microorganisms from their microbiome, the "marrow in their bones" which is where immune cells are born and maintained, comes back to its senses and begins performing its proper function and stops attacking the body.
So what am I saying? There is a “new” treatment plan to cure POTS disease! And it starts with healing your gut first. But don’t take my word for it…
Healing Dysautonomia Naturally - A Real Life Story
I've had the privilege of walking with a friend who developed POTS within days of running a marathon. She ended up in the hospital and didn’t know if she’d ever run a marathon again. She's seen great strides in her recovery by cleaning up her gut microbiome using Tumtree products, and as part of helping her in her recovery, I've become a student of POTS, NCS and other forms of Dysautonomia. I am fascinated by its genesis and am excited to share what we’ve discovered with you!
Meet Idonna Clarke from Idaho. She was diagnosed with Dysautonomia at age 36, just 7 days after running her second marathon. She underwent surgery to have a heart pacemaker installed. She suffered a pneumothorax (punctured lung) during the surgery and six months later had not recovered her health. Could you imagine?
Here’s Idonna telling her story:
"I tried rest, caffeine, slept elevated, visited my doctor multiple times but did not improve. What made all the difference was when I did the full 30-Day Reboot program to correct my microbiome and heal my leaky gut." - Idonna Clarke, Idaho