Pyroluria is not for life

by sue

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Pyrrole is not for life. It can be treated and eliminated!

by Sue Kira, Naturopath & Clinical Nutritionist

Previously it was believed that when you were diagnosed with pyrrole, you had it for life, and any treatment with nutritionals was also for life.

In some cases this is true, but only if you don’t eliminate the cause of the elevated pyrrole.

The misconception of ‘pyrrole for life’ evolved from the idea that pyrrole was inherited. Some factors that lead to pyroluria can be inherent, but…

The condition itself isn’t genetic at all but rather a condition that results from oxidation in the body.

We can have defective genes that make pyroluria more likely, but the fact is that there is a cause behind it that can be healed.

Epigenetics (our diet, lifestyle and environment) have the biggest impact on our chances of developing elevated levels of pyrrole.

I have covered some of these epigenetic factors before, such as ‘leaky gut’, small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), large intestine bacterial overgrowth (LIBO), parasitic infections, mould illness, heavy metal toxicity, other mineral imbalances like too much copper, and insufficient zinc.

Diet plays an important role

This is because of: damage created by acidic, processed, hydrogenated, genetically modified and toxic sprayed foods; eating or drinking too much sugar, alcohol and caffeine; and not consuming enough vegetables, water or fibre.


This is the big one most of us can relate to. What’s your stress resilience like and how well do you manage it?

What to do?

When you have these things going on that affect you, how do you support your body and mind?

First, work with a good practitioner to help rebalance those imbalances you don’t currently have control over, such as healing the gut, detoxing the toxins that shouldn’t be in your body, and go for an anti-inflammatory diet that is rich in antioxidants and the vital nutrients you need to support your body.

Reduce or eliminate foods and drinks that affect your liver such as caffeine, alcohol and other toxins, and those substances that inflame your gut such as gluten, dairy, sugar and processed foods.

Drink plenty of water. Look to specific dietary programs for ‘Leaky Gut’, SIBO/LIBO, a heavy metal detox, Pyrrole Support Diet or at least a gluten, dairy and sugar free diet.

Reduce stress. Make time for walks, sunshine, Epsom salts baths and relaxation. Lie down or sit quietly (even on the toilet) and simply focus on relaxing different parts of your body. Go to bed earlier and get extra sleep on the weekends.

The more you look after yourself the easier it will be for your body to heal.

What else can you do to support your body with this oxidative (think corrosive) process? You may already be taking certain vitamins and minerals to help balance your body, but also consider anti-oxidants. When there is an oxidation process going on, it makes serious sense to use anti-oxidants.

Even if you are already taking many supplements, there are probably some  you may not need any more, particularly if you have been taking supplements for a long time and you are on a good diet. It’s important to have your vitamins and minerals monitored to find out what you may be able to discard from your regime.

For example, Vitamin B6 was once considered to be essential to treat pyroluria because it was thought that pyrrole binds to B6 along with zinc. But new research shows us that this is not true.

There are now many people who have toxic overload symptoms from too much B6 in their body, whether from Pyridoxine Hydrochloride or Pyridoxyl 5 Phosphate (P5P). But some do need B6 and plenty of it at times.

So don’t take B6 just because you have been diagnosed with pyrrole, unless you first had your B6 levels tested. Otherwise you could waste money, add toxins to your body, and take a pill daily that could be replaced with something more helpful.

It’s a good idea to have your supplements reviewed regularly rather than take them indefinitely, however do not stop taking something prescribed unless you have been given the all clear to do so. This is very important.

Also, listen to your body. We often intuitively know when a certain supplement is not right (even if it’s just for that day) but we often override this feeling.

Anything taken for a medical condition must NEVER be stopped or adjusted without first speaking with your prescribing practitioner. I want to be super clear on that point.


So back to the topic of antioxidants, which solely don’t cure pyrrole, but are great to reduce the effects of oxidation and hence pyrrole levels. However, you need to work on the various causes of oxidation as mentioned above.

Which are the best antioxidants to use? There are many to choose from and following are some of my favourites. Be aware that some may not suit you, which is why you need the support of a good practitioner. Don’t try and use ALL of them, but find a combo that has a few key antioxidants and add some key herbs and spices to your diet.

  • Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum), aka St. Mary’s Thistle – liver antioxidant
  • Artichoke (Cynara scolymus), fresh, canned, jar, or powder –liver antioxidant
  • Beetroot (Beta vulgaris), fresh is best but can use powder – liver antioxidant
  • L-Glutathione (reduced)- this is our number one liver antioxidant for detox
  • N-Acetyl Cysteine (NAC) – supports the body to make and utilize glutathione
  • R-Alpha Lipoic Acid – is one of the best antioxidant in existence
  • Taurine – powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent
  • Grape Seed Extract (Vitis vinifera)- amazing antioxidant
  • Alpha Lipoic Acid – also helps make glutathione & detox
  • Turmeric (Curcuma longa), powder, fresh, concentrated extract of cucuminoids – this is a very powerful anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiviral & a great spice
  • Bilberry Extract (Vaccinium myrtilus) or fresh blueberries, raspberries and blackberries
  • Cranberry (unsweetened, juice, berries or powders) – berries are great fruit antioxidants
  • Rosemary (Rosemarinus officinalis) – you can add this to your cooking, as well as parsley, coriander (cilantro) all good herbal antioxidants
  • Bromelain (from Pineapple) and Papain from papaya – great antioxidants
  • Citrus Bioflavonoids – from the ‘white’ in citrus skins – powerful antioxidant
  • Quercetin – awesome antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, also anti-allergy
  • Co enzyme Q10 – only available as a supplement, but powerful antioxidant
  • Ginger root, fresh, or powder in cooking – better than a pill
  • Green Tea – popular antioxidant that is easy to incorporate into your lifestyle
  • Astaxanthin – very powerful antioxidant. It’s the pink in salmon & trout
  • Vitamin C preferably from fresh fruits and vegetables but can use sups if needed

I really prefer antioxidants from diet – those you obtain from food, so you also get the bonus ‘life force’ of the vegetable, spice, herb etc. And then it doesn’t feel like you are supplementing.

Eliminating pyroluria is all about looking after yourself, or to be more accurate, constantly treating yourself with love. Now that’s a real treat!

PS I’m available for consultations and I’d be delighted to help you with pyrrole or antioxidant choices. Details here

All the best, Love Sue x


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