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Holistic Chiropractor Told Me He Knows The Cure For Pots


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Hi, everyone,

As my never-ending search goes on for better health (I feel like it's never going to come), I've turned to alternative medicine and seen a holistic chiropractor, who said that he has treated some POTS patients and found that "POTS is an adrenal problem, along with low blood sugar." He said if he treats the adrenal glands and gets them to working properly, the rest falls in line. This he does with supplements and body manipulation.

Having said that, he examined me doing kinesiology (spelling?), and said that my ileocentric (?) valve (a valve between the small and large intestine) was stuck open, and that allowed toxins to back up through my system, poisoning me, and it also allowed foods to pass right on through without being digested properly. He manipulated me, rubbing on several pressure points, checked me again and said it was closed, but that I would have to have the treatment several times before it would stay shut on its own. Anyone ever heard of this?

Also, he then said that he knew exactly what was wrong with me: All of the meds I've been on over the years has hurt my system to the point that my adrenals are sluggish (hence, low blood sugar and POTS), my gallbladder was removed two years ago and I was never put on a supplement to help with digestion now that my gallbladder isn't there to help (so my digestion is poor), and I'm toxic from the valve being stuck open...I think that's it. He put me on five different supplements, some to be taken three times a day at two pills each! I figured up and I would be taking 20 pills a day! I can't even handle baby food most days! I told him that was not possible. I took a couple of the pills the first day, then one the second, and by the third day, my POTS was back and full-blown (nearly had an autonomic storm in the middle of the night, which I haven't done in ages!), I'm shaky all of the time now, my sugar is a mess as is my blood pressure, I'm a mess again, which I was before, but not with POTS, as I am now. I know even herbs can trigger POTS, but what I've read from you all over the years. I'm desperate, but not to the point I want to pop just anything.

Anyone have any thoughts about this? Any of you see a holistic chiropractor and take supplements? I've called him three times to tell him that I'm not handling things well. He just keeps pushing the supplements, saying I won't get better unless I take them. I want to take them, seeing as I am so sick and want so badly to get better, and two, they cost so dang much!

Thanks, everyone.


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My experience with supplements is I can't take them. They are too strong for me and irritate my bladder lining (I have interstitial cystitis) and irritate my chronic gastritis (stomach lining).

I would be careful because my experience with a "health food" doctor who was treating me for leaky gut and candidiasis in my gut was that I got a lot worse from his pills. I also believe that my stomach lining was permanently ruined after taking his medications. I have not been the same since.

Now, that being said, I would feel a lot more comfortable if an endocrinologist had tested you for insulin tolerance (which mine did). It showed that under stress (the test lowers your blood sugar), my adrenals do not put out what they are supposed to. The usual test for Addision's disease (cosyntropin stim test) was normal. In any event, I have documented proof that under stress I might need some hydrocortisone.

I totally understand your need for some answers and I am not discouraging you from your quest. Just be careful and think about things. Our bodies tend to be more sensitive to stuff than normal people.

I only want the best for you. Take care.

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I would be suspicious of any practitioner who claims he or she knows how to cure POTS. Where is the peer-reviewed literature to support these claims?

I saw a naturopath who said very much the same thing-that I needed adrenal support and she sold me a couple hundred dollars worth of supplements, most of which I never attempted to use, and what I did use made no difference in my symptoms. She never recommended the simple actions that DO help POTS like compression hose, added fluids or salt. Basically, she did not understand what I had, but insisted that she did.

This practitioner may very well have seen improvement in patients following his treatment only b/c many POTS patients do recover on their own, at least to some degree.

Be careful and skeptical--is my suggestion.

Take care,


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I have also turned to alternative treatments for various conditions over the years when regular doctors are at a loss to help. If you are going to try supplements, I would try one at a time, so that you'll know what you're reacting or responding to. I also have many allergies, and can't introduce multiple things at once.

I might also try something like acupuncture before taking pills. At least that would stimulate YOUR body to make whatever changes, rather than taking a substance.

And I'm always wary of people who claim they can fix me. I'm very wary of people who make claims like this, as much as I want to believe they have the answer.

I'm very wary of chiropractors, as I have eds. No adjustment will really hold and may stretch me out further. I've occasionally gone when my ribs were out.

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I would also be wary on "cure". But on the other hand, different things can help different people. I've seen a doctor of osteopath and some of the changes he has had me do (diet and some supplements) have helped some. I have more decent/good days then bad. It is a lifelong committment though when diet comes in to play, you know that well don't you!).

He should be more than willing to discuss things more in detail with you, rather than just tell you that you need the supplements and goodbye. Possibly starting one thing, a little at a time to see how it goes then work up. I can't take too much of any one thing from food to supplement without running the risk of having some type of reaction. I started small doses of things I tried and took it from there.

Also regarding $$$, he should understand that and really look at what you could wait to take and what is really the #1 thing he would suggest you take first and the rest can wait.

Otherwise, I would walk away if he is not open and willing to listen. There might be an equally good dr. out there who who thinks alternatively and complementary. A balance of both.


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I spent several years getting accupuncture, cranial sacral therapy and chiropractic. Of those, in my opinion, only the accupuncture helped a bit, and only with the headaches at that. Please look for any EMPIRICAL research showing a clear relationship between a treament and a desired outcome.

There are some treatments that may "cure" POTS in people who have an underlying, treatable condition, that is causing their POTS symptoms. Some here have found they had lyme infection, autoimmune disorder, thyroid disorder, or allergy that was the likey PRIMARY issue that caused POTS-like symptoms. However, claiming that one could cure POTS by spinal manipulation, massage, etc. is a BIG claim to make. For someone like me who has EDS hypermobility type, nothing that a chiropractor is going to do to me is going to improve my genetics. I'll have EDS after treatment and will therefore, still have dysautonomia as a symptom.


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I would judge an alternative health care practitioner by the same standards as a conventional doctor. Does he listen to you and answer your questions? Does he really seem to have an understanding of POTS (including the fact that it takes many different forms)?

I have spent many years trying alternative treatments. Some of them helped; some of them didn't. For the last several years, I've been working with an MD who also uses alternative treatments. Her approach is to give me a whole bunch of suggestions and tell me to experiment and see what works. But even she has her prejudices and blind spots. Use your judgement, and trust your gut.


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Keep in mind that chiropractors do not go to medical school to get their lisences, and that "holistic" medicine is not regulated by the FDA and is usually not peer-reviewed.

Also, in my experience, holistic "doctors" often come to the table with an agenda against pharmaceutical companies, and try to convince most people that the medicine they're taking is actually making them sick. If you had POTS before taking the meds you're on, then it makes sense that those meds couldn't have caused your POTS.

In my opinion, I'd be very, very cautious when stepping out of mainstream medicine. There are many people out there who tout themselves as "healers" but are really hucksters.

Also, you really should be communicating with your PCP about all of this. He/she can help you to make informed decisions about any new treatments you're trying.

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How could this chiropractor tell that your ileocecal valve is "stuck open"? Does he have x-ray vision? How could he tell that it "closed" after he rubbed you? Sounds like sheer quackery to me. Either that or he has superpowers. Thank goodness he doesn't use those powers for evil!!!

Isn't it convenient that the things that his competitors have a monopoly on (namely, your prescription medicines) are bad for you and the cause of all your problems--as if you were the picture of health when you started taking them. Isn't it a bizarre coincidence that the things that he promises will lead to your recovery are products and services that he can sell you?

Why don't the people who have had their ileocecal valve surgically removed get POTS?

If you have POTS and a history of gallbladder disease, I think you should be tested for celiac disease, especially if someone else in your family has a history of gallbladder disease or undiagnosed intestinal troubles. If you do have celiac disease, then the remedy is to eliminate gluten from your diet. I guess that's an "alternative medicine" thing to do, except that regular MDs will give you the same recommendation, on the off-chance that they ever think to test you for celiac disease. If you have celiac disease, you probably have malabsorption and "leaky gut," so you'll probably have lots of food allergies and maybe some nutritional deficiencies. So you may have to be on a restricted diet and take supplements until your gut heals.

By the way, a doctor of osteopathy (DO) is a real doctor, whose training is pretty much the same as an MD's, these days.

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Thanks, everyone, for your replies and support. Yes, I've been checked for celiac and found to not have it. I was checked I think both at CCF and Mayo, so I'm pretty confident I don't have it.

I want to clarify something. The chiropractor is more concerned with my gut problem than my POTS. That's not good either, I guess, but he didn't really address my POTS more than to say that he has found that it's a combination of low blood sugar and adrenal problems. He's more focused on my guts, seeing as I can't seem to put on any weight whatsoever and hurt all the time.

Now, here's what I've found on my own time. Weeks ago, I took a spit test, where I spit in a glass of water in the morning before eating or drinking anything. If "legs" came off the pit, I had a candida problem. If not, I didn't. Well, legs started to grow right away--many of them. I went off sugar (fruits, mainly, and stopped putting brown sugar on my sweet potatoes), took the test a week later, and no legs coming down. Then, when the chiropractor told me I could go back on fruit, I did for a week, took the test again, and now legs are coming down again, plus I feel awful again---hhmmmmm, that could be from his supplements, as well, though.

I don't know. All I know is I'm tired of feeling like I'm on my last leg, which is how I've felt since March. I'm desperate and am grasping at things I normally wouldn't. Plus, it doesn't help that my pcp dropped me--I got to be too much for her--she didn't know how to treat me. I see a new doc Monday, after asking lots of docs to become my pcp and getting no's from all but one.

You're all right, though, in that a lot of what he said didn't make sense to me, he didn't listen to my concerns, he was quite smug and I got worse after seeing him. But, I'm desperate, is my only excuse.


Oh, and just for clarification. He didn't say that the stuck open valve caused my POTS. He's saying all of the meds I've been on for years, plus stress, stuck open the valve, which has caused me to go toxic and has caused my food to digest too quickly, leading to malnutrition and malabsorption. I don't think he ever connected the valve with POTS. He said the POTS is from adrenals that don't work right. I don't know that those were connected with the valve or not.

I'm not standing up for him--just trying to be clear so you all can advise.

Thank you.


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Hi. You posted while I was working on my answer. I think I will leave it in, anyway. I never heard of the candida spit test, and I have heard of lots of candida tests.


The chiropractor did make some mistakes by saying he knew the "cure" and that you had an "adrenal problem", etc. Applied Kinesiologists are usually chiropractors, but there are many medical doctors and dentists. All are licensed health care providers and some are Board Certified with rigorous standards.

Applied Kinesiologists are taught that when the blood pressure drops on standing, it is an adrenal problem, period. Probably he took your BP in different positions. (They are not taught as much about tachycardia, except that it is often a potasssium deficiency or food allergies.) Once I started getting symptoms and did all sorts of adrenal tests I learned that this is not always, and maybe not usually, the case. The EDS people know differently. Hyperadrenergic people know differently. Gastrocardiac people know differently. Genetic involvement of the NET protein is not adrenal. Etc.

Ileocecal valve problems are so common they are almost considered normal, but they really can be associated with toxic symptoms. In my recent barium test, I saw that I had an (asymptomatic) ICV problem, but it wasn't even pointed out. A good friend of my sister's is a radiology tech and I asked her once how common they were. She had a problem there and said they were very common. Nevertheless, it doesn't mean it is the cause or involved in the cure of POTS.

It makes sense to try one pill (or food or medicine) at a time to check for tolerance, but sometimes supplements need to work together to be effective. My tummy cannot take a lot of pills at once, but still I know I have to somehow get into my system the things my body needs. If you had such a rough experience afterwards, it seems like the treatment or pills weren't right.

I don't want to type too much, but I have lots of experience and opinions, so feel free to PM me. Your PCP is not likely to have enough knowledge of body structure or nutrition to give educated advice, but if he/she is open-minded to natural support of what you are otherwise doing, that may be "as good as it gets."

I am curious about your muscle tests and how they compared with the lab tests you have had.

I wish you well in your quest.


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I have heard that the Ileocecal Valve syndrom and it is something most holistic healers will point to as causing all kinds of symptoms:



Syncope / Near syncope


Bad breath

Face pallor

Dark circles under eyes


Bowel disturbances (diarrhea / constipation)

I have found that accupuncture has really benefited me and improved my POTS symptoms by calming my nervous system. I had a saliva test for adrenals and they were not sluggish but alot of the holistic healers go after that as well.

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Hi Linda, I saw an alternative doctor for a few years who I feel was helpful. He worked with me on supporting my adrenals and thyroid, and on getting rid of a candida problem. I put all that in the category of improving my overall health, and I did feel better overall, but I wouldn't say it specifically helped my POTS symptoms.

With that said, my doctor never said he could "cure me", and I'd be very apprehensive hearing that from any doctor. I think when it comes down to it you have to really trust your intuition - if you're calling the doctor and telling him you're nervous taking the supplements, I think the doctor should have adapted the treatment plan to your individual situation. Just like any other speciality you're gonna find good and bad alternative doctors.

I've heard of the spit test for candida, but I question how valid a test it really is. It seems to me that it would only be picking up candida in your mouth, and could vary greatly depending on what you had recently eaten. But, I don't really know a lot about it....so don't take my word for it :( I think candida was detected via a bloodtest for me. Anyways, if you do think you have a candida problem it's definitely worth treating it. I felt a ton better from doing the diet. If you haven't already, William Crook's 'The Yeast Connection' is a great read, and you should be able to check it out of your library.

good luck,


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It sounds hocus pocus. If you had "toxins", wouldn't you have a fever? Anytime anyone says the T word to me, I run the other direction. If you think he knows his stuff, ask him to tell you what POTS stands for, etc. He can't know a cure if he doesn't know what it is. I would quiz him. You will be able to tell soon enough. He should not have to look at any notes while answering you.

In my opinion, some holistic healers are like fortune tellers; they will take the information you give them and turn it into what will make the pills sell!

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My chiropractor helps me with my minor migraine symptoms and I feel like a good alignment can't hurt me. I have tried multiple vitamins, herbal and natural type remedies. I tried the colon cleanse herbs. I tried the blending spinich and carrots and fruits and and all that good food stuff for months. My family thought I was crazy. I was desperate to attain health and my life back. Nothing proved of significant imporvement for me. Medications have been my life savers (although it's taken 2 years of trial and error to find significant improvement). My body was missing certain things that my body should have been making but it wasn't. my life have impoved recently with new medication:florinef.

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The old time healers used to say that nature cures and they just assist nature. When people claim to cure, we should all be suspicious.

But being too close-minded might cost us some valuable knowledge and help. There are many endogenous and exogenous sources of toxins we deal with daily and sometimes our bodies are not very effective and efficient at detoxifying. I don't mean to sound argumentative, but I do feel bad when support of natural physiology is shunned because the provider, book, pill, etc., does not have the blessings of an M.D.

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Guest sonotech

I think on a topic like this......RESEARCH is the key. Just research the Chiropractor and his/her qualifications and then do the research on the herbs they plan to have you take.

I know that when faced with a chronic illness that "modern medicine" can't help or cure we feel like we are willing to try ANYTHING! And that's ok as long as you protect yourself and make sure you do a little background work first.

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