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EVERYTHING BEGINS WITH

hope

"Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness."

Desmond Tutu

About-Us

ABOUT US

We started this foundation to make a real difference in the lives of people who are struggling with ALS.

ALS is a challenging and often devastating disease, and those who are affected by it can benefit greatly from the help we can provide

Friends in Nature
What-is-ALS

About als

What is ALS?

ALS, also known as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder that affects nerve cells in the brain and nerves throughout the body. ALS results in the breakdown of communication between the digestive system and muscles, leading to parts of the body gradually weakening until use is no longer possible. ALS is also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease after a legendary baseball player who died from ALS in 1941. Currently there are no treatments that can slow or stop ALS, although there are therapies available to help ALS patients manage pain and improve motor skills.

Those afflicted and their families can take solace in the existence of ALS non-profit organizations. These organizations are essential for providing greatly needed financial and emotional support for ALS patients and their families. They also fund research into ALS treatments and cures.

ALS Symptoms 

ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) is a progressive and often fatal neurological disorder that affects muscle control and movement. Affected individuals may experience a wide range of ALS symptoms, such as muscle weakness, twitching, stiffness and cramps. These symptoms may worsen over time as ALS progresses, leading to an inability to move legs and arms, difficulty speaking or eating, problems breathing and other physical impairments. ALS does not directly affect intelligence or senses like vision, touch or hearing. It’s important to be aware of potential ALS symptoms so that you can seek help in order to best manage this condition. 

Environmental Factor in ALS
Several environmental factors have been associated with an increased risk of developing ALS, including:

Exposure to toxins: Exposure to heavy metals, pesticides, and other toxins has been linked to an increased risk of ALS.

Smoking: Smoking has been linked to an increased risk of ALS, and smokers are more likely to develop the disease than non-smokers.

Military service: Military veterans are at a slightly higher risk of developing ALS, likely due to exposure to environmental toxins and other factors.

Traumatic brain injury: Traumatic brain injury has been linked to an increased risk of ALS, although the exact mechanisms by which this occurs are not yet fully understood.

Viral infections: Some studies have suggested that certain viral infections may increase the risk of ALS, although more research is needed to fully understand the link between viruses and the disease.

It's important to note that while these factors may be associated with an increased risk of ALS, they do not necessarily cause the disease. Most people with ALS do not have any known risk factors, and the exact cause of the disease is still not fully understood.

Viral infections in ALS

ALS can be caused by viral infections and other environmental triggers like certain viruses, exposure to toxins etc. ALS-specific cytokines are created as part of the body's immune response to these triggers and scientists believe this may be a potential cause of the disease in some people who develop ALS symptoms. Research is underway to further investigate this link between ALS and viral infections, with the hope that if it is confirmed it could lead to new treatments for ALS in the future.

Exposure to toxins in ALS

ALS can be caused or accelerated by exposure to environmental toxins such as manganese in the drinking water or mercury from fish consumption. For those already diagnosed with ALS, exposure to toxins can cause more severe symptoms at a faster rate. These findings are currently being studied further by the ALS Association for potential treatments– hoping to offer ALS patients some relief against this terrible disease.

Genetic Mutations in ALS

Although the exact cause of ALS is unknown and it is mostly considered sporadic, research has shown that a small number of ALS cases can be attributed to mutations in genes. These genetic mutations have been linked to ALS symptoms like muscle twitching and impaired motor coordination. ALS also appears to develop at an earlier age and progress more quickly in patients who have these genetic mutations. Researchers believe that this information could lead to targeted treatments for ALS patients in the future.

What is the reason cells die in ALS?

In ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), the nerve cells responsible for controlling muscle movement (motor neurons) gradually degenerate and die. The exact reason why these cells die is not yet fully understood, but there are several theories as to why this occurs.

One theory is that there is a problem with the nerve cells' energy metabolism, leading to an accumulation of toxic substances that damage the cells. Another theory is that the nerve cells are subjected to oxidative stress, leading to the accumulation of damaged proteins that trigger the death of the cells.

It is also thought that genetic mutations and environmental factors may interact to cause the death of motor neurons in ALS. Some studies have suggested that the abnormal accumulation of proteins within the nerve cells may trigger a destructive process that leads to the death of the cells.

Finally, some studies have suggested that inflammation may play a role in the death of motor neurons in ALS. This theory is based on the observation that many people with ALS have an increased level of inflammation in the brain and spinal cord, and that anti-inflammatory drugs may help slow the progression of the disease.

In conclusion, the exact reason why nerve cells die in ALS is still not fully understood, and more research is needed to determine the underlying mechanisms of the disease.

 

Heavy metals influence on ALS

Exposure to heavy metals, such as lead and mercury, has been linked to an increased risk of developing ALS (Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis). Some studies have suggested that exposure to heavy metals may cause oxidative stress and the accumulation of toxic substances that damage the nerve cells responsible for controlling muscle movement.

However, it is important to note that while exposure to heavy metals has been linked to an increased risk of ALS, most people with the disease do not have a history of heavy metal exposure. Additionally, the exact role of heavy metals in the development of ALS is still not fully understood, and more research is needed to determine the precise mechanisms involved.

If you have concerns about your exposure to heavy metals and your risk of developing ALS, it is best to speak with your doctor. Your doctor can help you assess your exposure to heavy metals and recommend steps to reduce your exposure to these substances. Additionally, it is important to take steps to protect your health and reduce your exposure to heavy metals by following recommended guidelines for safe use of products that contain heavy metals, such as lead and mercury.

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