The benefits of omega 3 fatty acids are well known: they protect from heart attack and stroke, regulate cholesterol triglyceride levels, and are healing to the brain and gut.
But Omega 3’s are not for everyone and actually increase inflammation for individuals with Pyrrole disorder, also known as Pyroluria, Kryptopyrroles, and Mauve factor, which is a biochemical abnormality that occurs when the body creates and excretes too many pyrrole molecules.
What is Pyrrole Disorder?
Pyrrole molecules are constantly excreted in our urine and for the typical person, this is not a big deal. However, for someone with Pyrrole disorder, nutrient deficiencies occur because these molecules have an affinity for zinc and vitamin B6 and latch onto and excrete them in urine before the body is able to absorb them. Pyrroles also keep omega 6 gamma-linolenic acid (GLA) from supporting brain function, as well as normal growth and development. GLA is also critical in regulating metabolism, maintaining the reproductive system, skin and hair growth, as well as maintaining bone health. Zinc and vitamin B6 are critical for a healthy immune system and maintaining intellectual function, mood, and memory to name a few.
Pyrrole disorder is a mood and stress disorder and contrary to popular belief, it can be seen in anyone of any age. Symptoms are typically most evident in toddlers and teenagers who have not yet learned how to cope with the resulting behaviors this disorder creates. I believe this is where the term “terrible twos” comes from. Pyrrole disorder is the underlying cause in a variety of symptoms and disorders from stretch marks, light sensitivity, and nausea, to Multiple Sclerosis and Rapid Cycling Bipolar Disorder.Are you intolerant to fish oil? You may have Pyrrole disorder. Click To Tweet
Pyrrole disorder is often genetically inherited, and I almost always see it when there is a long line of family alcoholism coupled with anger and rage.
Pyrrole disorder is much more common than folks realize and sadly, the medical community does not recognize it so your doctor probably won’t know what it is or how to test for it. Testing is simple using a kryptopyrrole test designed to find elevated kryptopyrroles in urine that carefully determines the level of pyrroles the body excretes. The kryptopyrrole test and pyroluria have also been historically referred to as KPU, Kryptopyroluria, KP, HPL, Mauve factor, and Hydroxyhemopyrrolin-2-one (HPL) in medical literature.
Symptoms and Disorders Association with Pyrrole Disorder
Common mood instability symptoms of pyrrole disorder include high irritability and temper, poor stress control, severe mood swings, tendency to withdraw socially, pessimism, explosive anger and rage, anxiety, and depression.
Physical signs include white spots on fingernails, a sweet or “fruity” breath, poor wound healing, frequent infections, poor short term memory, sensitivity to light, smell, sound, and textures, lack of dream recall, abdominal pain, lack of hair on head, eyebrows and eyelashes, blood sugar dysregulation, lack of regular menstrual cycles, abnormal body fat distribution, acne, loss of appetite (especially in the morning), low libido, leaky gut, malabsorption, insomnia, morning nausea, pale and thin skin, more energy in the evening (after the sun goes down), poor tanning, skin rashes, joint pain, spleen pain (side stitches when running), migraines, upper jaw overcrowding, sensitivity to supplements, gut dysbiosis, delayed puberty, and criminal behavior.
Disorders associated with Pyrrole disorder include Bipolar disorder (especially rapid cycling), Autism, Schizophrenia, OCD, ADD/ADHD, Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD), Tourette syndrome, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Asperger syndrome, alcoholism, epilepsy, Down syndrome, and Porphyria.
Diet and nutrients are key for the pyroluric individual and must contain ample zinc and B6-rich proteins for calming and to balance blood sugar, as well as high quality omega 6 fatty acids. Healing leaky gut and malabsorption is a major factor in pyrrole disorder and must also be addressed for healing to occur.
I encourage you to not buy into the hype that all omega 6 fatty acids are bad. Industrialized vegetable oils such as canola, soy, and corn are not good choices, but this doesn’t make all omega 6 oils evil enemies. Quite a few of them are very healing for those with Pyrrole disorder.
If you know of someone who struggles with any of these symptoms and disorders, please share this post. If you struggle with Pyrrole disorder, please share your experience in the comments below. It is through sharing your story that we create community, eliminate guilt and shame, and bring about healing.
Horrobin DF, Huang YS. Schizophrenia: the role of abnormal essential fatty acid and prostaglandin metabolism. Med Hypotheses. 1983 Mar;10(3):329-36.
Walsh, William J. Fatty Acid Profiles of Schizophrenic Phenotypes. 91st AOCS Annual Meeting and Expo San Diego, California April 25-28, 2000.
Walsh, William J. Discerning the Mauve Factor Part I. Alternative Therapies, Mar/Apr 2008, Vol. 14, No. 2.
Walsh, William J. Discerning the Mauve Factor Part II. Alternative Therapies, May/Jun 2008, Vol. 14, No. 3.
Pfeiffer, Carl C. (1975). Mental And Elemental Nutrients. New Canaan, CT: Keats Publishing.
Pfeiffer Carl C., Iliev V. Pyroluria, Urinary Mauve Factor, Cases Double deficiency of B6 and zinc in schizophrenics. Fed Am Soc Exp Biol. 1973, 32:276.
Pfeiffer Carl C., Sholer A, Jenny EH, et al. Treatment of Pyroluric Schizophrenia (Malvaria) With Large Doses of Pyridoxine and a Dietary Supplement of Zinc. J Appl Nut. 1974, 26:21-28.