A Cure for Hay Fever?

The Daily Mail, The Daily Mail, August 13th 2002 Author: Marc Chadbourn

HAY FEVER sufferers may soon be able to greet the summer with open arms and clear noses. New research makes great claims for a treatment based on the ground-up bark of an African gum tree, which also seems able to relieve the symptoms of asthma.

The treatment, which comes in capsule form, is a traditional African medicine derived from a gum tree found only in Ghana, West Africa. The bark is soaked in clean water and then dried naturally, meaning the finished product contains no chemicals or additives. It is now marketed in the UK under the name Yamoa.

Asthma refers to the shortness of breath caused by the narrowing of the bronchial tree – the main airways in the lungs. It is often triggered by an environmental cause, such as an allergy to air pollution, dust mites or certain vapours. The number of asthma cases is rising fast in the UK. In 1973, 4 per cent of the population was diagnosed as asthmatic; in 1996, the figure was 21 per cent. It is now estimated that around 3.4 million people are affected, including 750,000 pupils.

Early statistics from a study by Dr Nyjon Eccles and nutritional therapist Althea Myrtle at Harley Street’s Chiron Clinic show that 48 per cent of Yamoa users claim they have been completely cured of hay fever, and a third believe they’ve seen a marked improvement. Nearly one-third of test subjects who suffered from asthma said they’d been completely cured, while 41 per cent reported a marked improvement. The effects of taking Yamoa could be seen in as little as two months in most patients. Dr. Eccles, who has a PhD in medicine from University College Medical School, London, says he came across Yamoa a year ago. ‘Some of my patients had found it on the internet and were taking it, so I decided to run a proper trial,’ he says. ‘At the moment, I’m taking formal measurements of lung capacity so that we can quantify the results scientifically, rather than relying on patients’ anecdotal evidence, but so far the results are very encouraging. ‘Yamoa seems to alter the immune system so the patient is no longer sensitive to pollen triggers. It also seems that patients need to take it for only a two-month period, never again. A large proportion of sufferers have been cured and haven’t needed to take antihistamines or use their asthma inhalers since.’ The only side effect is a slight, tickly cough.

Karen Barleycorn is a 28-year-old mother-of-one from London. Her hay fever symptoms have been cleared by taking Yamoa. ‘My hay fever started when I was seven and helping out on a market stall in East London,’ she says. ‘Being out in the open, it used to hit me badly. My eyes would swell up and I’d have an itchy throat. At night I couldn’t sleep. Once, when I went for a day out in the country, I had to come home because I had a very scary asthma attack.‘I’ve never been hospitalised, but it is frightening, as anyone who’s experienced it will know.’ She adds: ‘My symptoms subsided a little when I took an indoor job with Boots, but I was still using my inhaler four or five times a day all through the summer. ‘I was introduced to Yamoa by a friend three years ago and I started taking it twice a day. Within a few months I could see a massive improvement. ‘I don’t use an inhaler any more, and I don’t have any symptoms. I know it says on the box that you only need to take Yamoa for a month, but I’m still taking it three years later because I don’t want to risk going back to how I was. ‘I’ve just come back from a break in Cumbria. In the past, I wouldn’t have been able to go out without my eyes streaming and having difficulty breathing, but this time I didn’t have any symptoms at all. ‘The hay fever really made my life miserable. I couldn’t enjoy some of the things my friends took for granted, like a walk in the park. ‘I’m sure they got sick of me sneezing and having swollen red eyes the whole time. Even nights were bad. I’d wake up at least twice night, having to use my inhaler. ‘Hay fever was a part of my life for so long that I can’t believe it’s gone, and I still find it amazing.

How does Yamoa work?

Independent researchers from Montana State University in the USA have determined how the unique active ingredients found in Yamoa correct your immune system to respond normally to allergens.

Yamoa works on the root cause of your symptoms by altering your immune system’s response to allergens, normalising your reaction to them and so eradicating symptoms.

Because Yamoa changes the immune system and doesn’t just manage or mask symptoms, like many people you may find that a two month course is enough Yamoa™ to give you long-lasting benefits.

Powerful properties

Other powerful properties discovered in Yamoa™ by independent researchers from London, France and the Ivory Coast combine to make it a wonderful all-round health supplement.

The top 5 Yamoa™ research findings:

• An effective anti-inflammatory
• Improves white blood cell counts
• Yamoa polysaccharides stimulate innate immunity
• An effective antibacterial
• Yamoa slants allergic immune response on a molecular level

Frequently asked questions

1. What exactly is Yamoa?

Yamoa™ Powder comes in 30gm containers of pure Funtumia elastica ground bark powder. The Yamoa™ Capsules contain 500mg pure Funtumia elastica ground bark powder, 10mg Magnesium stearate B.P., and a vegan cellulose capsule.
Yamoa™ powder 30gm contains pure Funtumia elastica bark powder. The capsules are pure powder with a small amount of magnesium stearate as an anti-caking agent, and a cellulose (vegan) capsule.
POWDER: Mix the entire contents of the 30gm bottle thoroughly with an average size jar of honey, about 1lb (454gm). Stir well until the powder is completely mixed, also stir the mixture each time you use it. Adults: One 5 ml standard teaspoonful twice a day for one month continuously. Children: under the age of 12: Half a 5ml teaspoon twice a day for one month continuously. OR take 1/4 of a 5ml teaspoon of powder twice a day with a glass of water or fruit juice, tea or any beverage, an eighth of a teaspoon for children. FOR BEST RESULTS, FINISH ENTIRE MIXTURE EVEN IF RELIEF IS FOUND AT AN EARLY STAGE OF TREATMENT. CAPSULES: Adults: 1 capsule twice a day (morning and evening) with water. Children aged 12 and under: 1/2 capsule twice a day (morning and evening) mixed in honey or jam, maple syrup or other foodstuff to mask bitter taste. If the child is old enough to swallow the capsule, only half of the powder will require mixing with honey (or other). IT IS IMPORTANT NOT TO STOP YOUR OR YOUR CHILDS CURRENT MEDICATION WITHOUT YOUR DOCTORS ADVICE.
The guide is really just twice a day, at a decent interval of a good 6-8 hours - it does not have to be specifically at mealtimes, although people usually find it easier not to forget to take the dose if taken at these benchmarks in the day.
The pure Yamoa™ should be emptied completely into the honey and mixed thoroughly, then stirred before each dose is taken. Using the right amount of honey/jam (approx. 1lb/454gm) ensures that the correct dose is taken. Please remember a child's dose is half a teaspoon of the mixture, and the mixture will be taken over approximately 2 months in all for a child.
You can mix it with a jam, brown rice syrup, pure maple syrup, water or any beverage. It can also be sprinkled into baby cereals or yoghurt for young children or babies - honey is not recommended for babies under 1 year due to the risk of Botulism (bacteria in honey). Yamoa™ tastes bitter, so it is better mixed with something sweet. If you are a diabetic, you are best advised to mix it with a low sugar carrier. We have Yamoa™ in Capsule form, which is ideal for people who cannot take Yamoa™ mixed in honey.
Most people find they get results within the first two months. Some people obviously need more than two months, but some people do take the powder for longer for a variety of reasons. Many people experience changes in their condition within the first two weeks, but it is best to take the mixture until the course is finished entirely.
It has been a long-term solution for many people. We tend generally to supply second courses to people who are re-ordering on behalf of their friends or relatives rather than themselves, but obviously some people may require follow-up treatment consecutively or the following season. Others tend to buy again for themselves to have the product to hand 'just in case'. It is a very subjective remedy, and we cannot categorically say that you will only need the one course.
We have found that people who have had their condition for many years, and who are in the senior age bracket, have generally required more than one course of Yamoa™ before beginning to feel substantial benefits. This may be down to the fact that the condition is long-standing, and that an older person has a longer history of illness and stress, which may mean a reduced immune system capacity, which may make it harder to recover from a condition as quickly as a younger person or a child. With this in mind, it may mean that although Yamoa™ may not appear to improve your condition within a month, it may need longer to establish its healing properties and boost your immune system against the triggers which cause your asthma. Persevering with Yamoa™ for more than one month may therefore bring better results.
Hay fever sufferers have been known to take Yamoa™ in the winter, and it has remained effective for the following hay fever season. Others have found relief from their symptoms after taking it at the beginning of the season. Others find they take it at the beginning of the season each year. Most people who take it whilst they are suffering symptoms, find relief within a couple of weeks of taking it. It is always recommended to take the dose every day until the course is finished completely even if relief is found early on in treatment. One course (two months) is usually enough for one person.
We have had isolated reports (from single people) of a reaction of a rash, water-retention, a tickly cough, stomachache and palpitations (when taking blood pressure tablets also). Some people may respond initially to Yamoa™ with what is termed as a 'healing reaction' (sometimes known as a healing 'crisis' or Herxheimer reaction). This is when symptoms seem to worsen before they start to improve, and it can be quite alarming for some people, particularly asthma sufferers. Please bear this in mind, and although it is rare with Yamoa™, it is common with many complimentary therapies. Please be sure, particularly if you suffer from respiratory attacks such as in asthma, that you always carry your emergency medication with you at all times, even if you feel Yamoa™ has helped you combat your condition. We do not recommend you take Yamoa™ if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you are on blood pressure medication. We also do not recommend mixing the powder with honey or another sweet carrier if you suffer from fungal infections in the respiratory tract (see Powder versus Capsules questions below). If you find you are experiencing any adverse symptoms from taking Yamoa™, please let us know. Please see our 'drug interactions' question.
We have had feedback from one lady regarding a possible interaction between Yamoa™ and her daily dose of 0.5mg of Norvasc (blood pressure medication), resulting in palpitations which increased in severity the longer she used the powder. She ceased use of the powder, and her palpitations disappeared after a few days. This is the only drug interaction we know of to date. Tests to establish whether it could interact with any one medication taken by any given individual are impossible to conduct due to the enormity of the task (there are so many drugs and drug combinations being taken), that we cannot give a conclusive guarantee that this will never happen, therefore it is strictly your decision as to whether you will go ahead and use Yamoa™ whilst on your current medications. If you experience any signs that an adverse reaction is happening to you when you take Yamoa™, you must stop immediately and consult your healthcare specialist, and inform us so that we can advise others of possible interactions.
We do not recommend that pregnant or breastfeeding women or people on High Blood pressure medications take Yamoa™.
Yamoa™ has been microbiologically analysed to clinically confirm that it is free from nasties such as Salmonella and E-Coli, Faecal Coliforms and Faecal streptococci. The conclusion to the tests was: "The analyses undertaken provided no evidence of the presence of pathogenic bacteria on any of the samples examined". Further research (Graff JC et al, Polysaccharides derived from Yamoa™ (Funtumia elastica) prime γδ T cells in vitro and enhance innate immune responses in vivo, Int Immunopharmacol (2009), doi:10.1016/j.intimp.2009.07.015) found that Yamoa™ in fact "may be effective as therapeutic innate immunostimulants in Salmonella enterica serotype typhimurium infection and potentially other infectious disease settings." It has also been tested by the Centre for Scientific Research into Plant Medicine (MINISTRY OF HEALTH), Ghana, by S. Osafaro-Mensah MSc. These tests were performed between 1996 and 1998. Mr Osafaro's conclusions to the tests were "The investigation and clinical trials conducted have shown that Yamoa™ is safe for human use...and when the bark is dried it can be safely stored for up to 6yrs before being ground for use". A peer reviewed scientific research paper, (Graff JC et al, Polysaccharides derived from Yamoa™ (Funtumia elastica) prime γδ T cells in vitro and enhance innate immune responses in vivo, Int Immunopharmacol (2009), doi:10.1016/j.intimp.2009.07.015) conducted by Montana State University's Molecular Biology department determined that Yamoa™ "appears safe" with "no evidence of toxic or other adverse effects". Jodi Hedges, one of the lead researchers on Yamoa™ explained when interviewed, "We think that in vivo the main response to polysaccharides is that they prime the cells, to better respond to other signals. They do not overtly stimulate the cells, and they do not induce inflammatory cytokines. Targeting these gd T cells and NK cells is nifty because these cells are not the source of strong damaging cytokines like IL-1, IL-6 and TNFa, these come from macrophages. gd T cells and NK cells are anti-inflammatory in many situations, and polysaccharides may enhance that capacity as well. Macrophages are not known for this, but also do not appear to be a primary target for these polysaccharides (if they were, we would see more inflammation not less).”
The main differences are the ease of use, the ability to maintain an accurate dosage and the compatibility with a strict sugar or carbohydrate free diet, such as that of a diabetic or someone trying to lose weight, or even someone who needs to avoid sugars due to candidiasis, etc. If you suffer from fungal infections in the respiratory tract, it is better to take the capsules than the honey mixture, or at least do not mix the loose powder into honey or a sweet carrier as the sugar will only exacerbate the condition and it may become worse rather than improve. If you do not know whether you are suffering from a fungal infection, it may be better to opt for the capsules to err on the side of caution.
The loose powder is better for those suffering from seasonal allergies or hay fever when mixed with a local honey, as the honey will itself help to strengthen the immune system against local pollens. It is also more suitable for those suffering from conditions such as MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivity) as it does not have the added presence of magnesium stearate, as in the capsules. If you suffer from fungal infections in the respiratory tract, it is better to take the capsules than the honey mixture, or at least do not mix the loose powder into honey or a sweet carrier as the sugar will only exacerbate the condition and it may become worse rather than improve. If you do not know whether you are suffering from a fungal infection, it may be better to opt for the capsules to err on the side of caution.
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