Therapy of the HPU

HPU not causally curable, but good to treat

According to current knowledge, HPU is not causally curable. However, a suitable therapy and an adjustment of the lifestyle enables the affected persons to live a (nearly) symptom-free life. The basic therapy consists of returning the lost micronutrients (zinc, manganese and activated vitamin B6 (P5P)) to the body.

“However, the complete recovery of symptoms can take months and depends on age. Very rapid improvements are often observed in children.”

Dr. med Joachim Strienz, Living with KPU, 6th edition, Zuckerschwerdt Verlag, 2017

Not taken seriously by conventional medicine

Many HPU patients undergo a physician odyssey with unsatisfactory therapeutic success before their diagnosis. In self-help groups, they report the feeling of “not feeling taken seriously”, of the symptoms being shifted onto the psyche (“we can’t find anything physically, your problem must be psychological”) or of pure symptom treatment (pain tablets for chronic headaches or stomach aches).

Since HPU can also be accompanied by psychological disorders such as anxiety and panic attacks, depression, AD(H)S, as well as high sensitivity, many affected people end up in psychotherapeutic practices.

A psychotherapeutic treatment can be a useful accompaniment to HPU therapy, but it does not counteract the causes of the symptoms.

Broad spectrum of symptoms requires individual therapy

Since HPU can manifest itself in very different symptoms, there is no generalized therapy recommendation that works equally well for all HPU sufferers.

HPU rarely occurs alone, but is often caused by disorders:

  • the thyroid gland (e.g. Hashimoto’s thyroiditis),
  • the mitochondria (mitochondriopathy),
  • the adrenal glands (adrenal weakness),
  • of the intestine (leaky gut) and the intestinal flora (dysbiosis) etc.

For this reason, therapeutic support by a doctor experienced in HPU (environmental or orthomolecular medicine) or alternative practitioners is usually unavoidable.

The Dutch research institute KEAC provides a list of therapists for Germany, Austria and Switzerland on its website. The therapist list of HPU and You can be found here.

Balance of micronutrients

The reason for the metabolic disorder HPU is haem-forming enzymes that do not work properly. One or more of the 8 haem-producing enzymes can be affected in different ways. As a result, the body produces an incorrectly folded heme that cannot work properly due to its faulty structure. Since the incorrectly folded heme is toxic to the body, it must be disposed of. This is done by binding vitamin B6, zinc and manganese to the defective heme and excreting the entire complex through the kidney (this complex is measured when HPU is diagnosed).

This solves the problem of toxic haem, but the body loses important micronutrients that are urgently needed elsewhere. An essential pillar of HPU therapy is therefore the adequate supply of the body with micronutrients. These include primarily minerals such as:

  • Zinc
  • activated vitamin B6 (P5P))
  • Manganese

The supply of these 3 micronutrients also normalizes the synthesis of heme. The body produces more “healthy” haem and less misfolded haem, which it has to eliminate with micronutrients. The amino acid glycine, which is essential for the production of heme, can also support the synthesis of heme.

You can find more information on therapy with micronutrients here.

How long does the therapy last?

Micronutrients must be supplied throughout the life of an HPU patient – more so in stressful phases of life than in relaxed times. An improvement in symptoms can be expected in adults 4 to 6 months after the start of therapy, in children it can occur much earlier.

In his book “HPU and then”, Dr. J Kamsteeg describes that the psychological symptoms usually improve in the first 3 months after the start of treatment, and from the 4th month onwards the physical symptoms, for example.

Therapy break?

Kamsteeg also reports micronutrient-free periods of about 1.5 years during which the HPU patients did not show typical HPU symptoms. This was particularly the case in patients who had changed their diet and stress management. He recommends a basic therapy with micronutrients of at least 9 months.

The HPU therapist Dr. Tina Ritter recommends taking the dietary supplements continuously.

Important: Every new stress event (psychological stress, physical overstrain, infections…) can set the patient back in therapy and fire up the production of the HPL complex again. In particularly stressful phases, the micronutrient supply can therefore be increased. You can find more information on how to deal with stress here.