Thursday, January 17, 2019

Bacterial gastroenteritis and molybdenum's limitations in dealing with it

In the past couple years, I've seen many instances of molybdenum glycinate causing dramatic relief of viral gastroenteritis. However, I've also seen a handful of cases where it didn't do much, if anything, to stop vomiting. In those cases, there has been reason to suspect infection with listeria, salmonella, or another food-borne bacteria.

Bacteria make their own toxins. Viruses, on the other hand, typically attack our own cells with the main aim being to use our own cells to replicate and spread the viruses as quickly as possible. My hypothesis is that during these viral attacks, excess sulfite--a metabolic product of hydrogen sulfide, which is used in protecting the gastric mucosa from injury--is a primary trigger of the vomiting associated with viral gastroenteritis; the molybdoenzyme sulfite oxidase converts sulfite to sulfate, which I think is how molybdenum glycinate alleviates vomiting from viral gastroenteritis.

But getting back to bacteria. Stupid bacteria. We don't know they're in us till they make us sick with their toxins. Salmonella releases toxins when it dies. Can molybdenum do anything for bacterial gastroenteritis? Based on what I've seen so far, which is not a very large sample*, a relatively short bout of vomiting will occur, despite taking molybdenum, as the body rids the stomach and proximal small intestine of the bacterial toxins within them. I suspect that antiemetic medications--even ginger, which has a compound that is a 5-HT3 receptor antagonist ( help prevent this vomiting, but I'm not sure that we want to prevent it; after all, do we want those toxins to remain in our body? I don't know the answer to that question.

I have noticed that molybdenum glycinate seems to shorten the course of vomiting from probable bacterial gastroenteritis. Once and done, sometimes ( Perhaps the bacterial toxins damage cells in the stomach and so trigger an increase in sulfite, which the molybdenum then helps with via sulfite oxidase (see the discussion of viral gastroenteritis above).

One clear benefit molybdenum appears to give in bacterial gastroenteritis is relief from diarrhea in nearly all the cases I've heard about.

Only one person said it didn't help her with diarrhea--apparently from bacterial gastroenteritis--despite pre-dosing for a few days before coming down with the same "bug" that hit her young children earlier. Her children threw up but never had diarrhea; I assume she gave them molybdenum since she was pre-dosing herself with it. When she came down with the "bug," she had severe diarrhea. Because molybdenum is stored in the liver and delivered from there to the duodenum, I asked her whether she had known liver issues, and it turns out she does have elevated liver enzymes. I also heard of a man a while back who had been horribly sick with gastroenteritis for days before I happened to run into his wife and told her about molybdenum; when his wife, a nurse, gave him molybdenum, he was able to keep food/drink down, but only when he took molybdenum. This indicates to me that some people have difficulty retrieving molybdenum out of storage in the liver and delivering it to where it needs to go; they will thus need more frequent doses of molybdenum and will not be helped by pre-dosing.

To sum up the above, molybdenum glycinate can ameliorate bacterial gastroenteritis symptoms, especially diarrhea, but its preventative effects on vomiting will be generally be markedly less than is seen with viral gastroenteritis. Moreover, people with liver and biliary tract issues appear to benefit most from "as-needed" doses of molybdenum glcyinate since the molybdenum stored in the liver is less able to quickly get where it needs to during gastroenteritis (be it bacterial or viral); pre-dosing with molybdenum glycinate will likely not help them.

[Updated 10:30 am, January 17, 2019: My teenage daughter came to me less than an hour after I'd posted the above saying that her head had started hurting ten minutes earlier and that her stomach had started hurting two minutes earlier. Early this morning, I was talking with her friend's mother, who very recently had a bout of what might have been salmonella and during which molybdenum was unable to prevent vomiting. Our conversation about it, which took place while my child was in a classroom with her two teenage children (meaning my daughter was possibly getting exposed) was part of the impetus for the post. While writing the post, I pondered on ways to prevent bacterial toxins in the stomach from triggering vomiting; one way to do so should be to get the stomach to empty faster. It has been reported that peppermint oil enhances gastric emptying (, and I have candy canes leftover from Christmas. So I gave my daughter molybdenum glycinate tablets to dissolve in her mouth, a cup of water to sip on, and some candy canes to suck on between sips. By an hour later, her stomach had stopped hurting, so I took her candy canes away, but her head still hurt. Since her stomach was better, I gave her one acetaminophen to swallow. Then a few minutes later, she called out from the couch, "My stomach hurts again." But she says it's a different kind of pain, so I suspect it's just the acetaminophen irritating her stomach. I gave her back her candy canes. A few minutes later, her stomach was better and her headache was lessened. I've taken to carrying a bottle of molybdenum in my purse during the last year as a first aid supply, and it looks like I'm going to have to add peppermint oil-containing candies to my purse now, too. And I thought I wouldn't need a big purse when my kids got older....]

* Seriously, isn't there someone out there with more resources willing to take over on this? I'm a housewife. I should not be the only person trying to figure out what is going on with molybdenum's effects on the body when given in doses larger than the RDA. Please email me. You can find my email address on my publications, which I link to in earlier blog posts.