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chronic pain or chronic illness?  peptide therapy with bpc-157 may provide a solution



Proteins, peptides, and many of the most common hormones (including the fountain of youth, hGH or HUMAN GROWTH HORMONE) are made up of chains of amino acids, with the major (and completely arbitrary) differentiating factor being the length of the chain.  PEPTIDES are shorter than 50 aminos, while proteins are longer.   Other peptide hormones of interest include INSULIN, GLUCAGON, FSH, TSH, LEPTIN, GHRELIN, OXYTOCIN, along with a host of others. 

I share this with you because if you are one of the millions upon millions of people suffering with CHRONIC PAIN — particularly CHRONIC MUSCULOSKELETAL PAIN — or chronic illnesses from the  INFLAMMATORY, AUTOIMMUNE or GUT HEALTH families, you owe it to yourself to learn a bit more about peptides.  Here are a few common “therepeutic” peptides as well as what they are being used for.

  • TB-500 (Thymosin Beta-4) for muscle repair and regeneration.
  • LGD-4033 (Anabolicum or Ligandrol) is a similar product.
  • Epitalon for it’s anti-aging features and ability to restore telomere length.
  • Bremelanotide (PT-141) used for reversing SEXUAL DYSFUNCTION (typically arousal issues), particularly in women but also in men.
  • Ibutamoren Mesylate / Nutrobal (MK-677), known largely for its ability to stimulate hGH and IGF-1 (Insulin-like Growth Factor 1), which is itself an extremely anabolic peptide.
  • CJC-1295 is similar to above, but is a synthetic form of Growth Hormone Releasing Factor (GHRF).
  • Cerebrolysin, which is a porcine-derived peptide combination used to treat those struggling with the after-effects of stroke, TRAUMATIC BRAIN INJURY, and DEMENTIA.
  • GHK-CU is a copper-based peptide that is said to have wound-healing properties, anti-inflammatory properties, anti-aging properties, anti-tumor properties, as well as having positive effects on both stem cells and neurological tissues.  It’s also used in some cosmetics and as a hair-growth product.
  • Ostarine is the peptide that caused three Clemson football players, including all-American Dexter Lawrence, to miss this year’s spanking of Alabama in the NCAA National Football Championship game.  It’s used for reversing OSTEOPOROSIS and muscle wasting.

As you might imagine, there are others — way too many to mention here.  As you would also expect, there has been great interest / use of these compounds by those in the strength and bodybuilding communities (at 52 YEARS OLD; while I still continue to train, I no longer have an interest in getting ‘huge’ or pulling 500 lb deadlifts (HERE).   Also be aware that most of the substances on this list have side effects — some of them quite troublesome.  That is why today we are going to keep today’s discussion of peptides to just one — a substance known as BPC-157.

Back in 1992, a group of 10 Croatian scientists were working with a new compound that had been isolated from STOMACH ACID and gastric juices, which had been named Body Protective Compound 157.  In a study published in Acta Phyisiologica Hungaria (The Significance of the Gastro-Protective Effect of Body Protection Compound (BPC): Modulation by Different Procedures), these authors looked at BPC-157’s effects on the outcomes of numerous types of surgeries, concluding,

Thus, seeing a wide range of organoprotective effects of BPC (intestines, kidney, liver, pancreas, inflammation, diabetes mellitus, delayed type of hypersensitivity), the gastroprotection has been supposed to be of crucial pattern in the general concept of organo-protection and to be responsible for the mediation of the suggested “stomach stress organoprotective response”. Therefore, the obtained modulations suggest a complex and overall beneficial effect of BPC.” 

a bit garbled in translation, this should have at least piqued some interest within the scientific community.  It did.  A year later, the Journal of Physiology, Paris (A New Gastric Juice Peptide, BPC. An Overview of the Stomach-Stress-Organoprotection Hypothesis and Beneficial Effects of BPC) said this of BPC (in CHERRY-PICKED fashion as well)…..

“The possibility that the stomach, affected by general stress, might initiate a counter-response has not until recently been considered in theories of stress. We suggest that the stomach, as the most sensitive part of the gastrointestinal tract and the largest neuroendocrine organ in the body, is crucial for the initiation of a full stress response against all noxious stress pathology. The end result would be a strong protection of all organs invaded by ‘stress’. Consistent with this assumption, this coping response is best explained in terms of ‘organoprotection’. 

A new gastric juice peptide, BPC 157, has been fully characterized and investigated.  Despite the poorly understood mechanism, practically all organ systems appear to benefit from BPC activity. These effects have been achieved… using very low dosages.  The effect was apparent after one application. Long lasting activity was also demonstrated. BPC was highly effective when applied simultaneously with noxious agents or in already pathological, as well as chronic conditions. Therefore, it seems that BPC treatment does not share any of the so far known limitations for ‘conventional organoprotectors’. No toxicity was observed.”

If you did not grasp the sheer magnitude of this statement, allow me to break it down for you.  Peptide BPC-157 not only affects the DIGESTIVE TRACT in a positive manner, it does so in a rapid-acting, long-lasting manner that does not seem to have any SIDE EFFECTS.  Furthermore, it seemed to work whether the experimental animal was already sick or being purposely made sick by introducing various sorts of TOXICITY.  

Fast-forward twenty six years to last week’s issue of Cell and Tissue Research (Gastric Pentadecapeptide Body Protection Compound BPC 157 and its Role in Accelerating Musculoskeletal Soft Tissue Healing).  After reviewing three decades worth of scientific literature and research on BPC 157, the authors (a sports therapist, phyisicist / expert in regenerative medicine, and biomedical engineer), from the UK’s Loughborough University, concluded….

“Currently, all studies investigating BPC 157 have demonstrated consistently positive and prompt healing effects for various injury types, both traumatic and systemic and for a plethora of soft tissues. However, to date, the majority of studies have been performed on small rodent models and the efficacy of BPC 157 is yet to be confirmed in humans. Further, over the past two decades, only a handful of research groups have performed in-depth studies regarding this peptide.

Despite this, it is apparent that BPC 157 has huge potential and following further development has promise as a therapy to conservatively treat or aid recovery in hypovascular and hypocellular soft tissues such as tendon and ligaments. Moreover, skeletal muscle injury models have suggested a beneficial effect not only for disturbances that occur as a result of direct trauma but also for systemic insults [disease processes].  Promisingly, there are few studies reporting any adverse reactions to the administration of BPC 157.”

As you can read for yourself (the study is free online) the research dealt with the repairitive effects of BPC-157 on LIGAMENTS, TENDONS, and other connective tissues that are essentially FASCIA-BASED.  Take a peek at the author’s statistics, which they admitted were over a decade old, meaning they would be significantly worse today.

  • There are 33 million musculoskeletal injuries in the United States each year.
  • Half of these injuries involve connective tissues.
  • Over 300,000 surgeries are done each year to repair these connective tissues.
  • Nearly half of all sports injuries involve a tendon.

All of which begs the question; how does BPC-157 work?  After discussing the various phases of healing I talk about in many places, including my COLLAGEN SUPER-PAGE, the authors listed a host of physiological effects that BPC-157 have on injured tendons, including less mechanical derangement of the wound / scar (HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE), INCREASED FIBROBLASTIC ACTIVITY, increased production of high quality collagen fibers (see first link in paragraph), increased ability to bear loads, greater functionality / flexiblity, and several others. 

In fact, when BPC was used on totally severed Achilles tendons of rats (A CATASTROPHIC INJURY at best), it only took 14 days to completely knit back together. 

Oh, and lest I forget; BPC 157 was also shown to counter the deterioration and degenerative effects that are almost ubiquitous with the use of CORTICOSTEROIDS for musculoskeletal injuries — a fact admitted to by these authors (“although corticosteroid use has long been and remains controversial for healing of tissues, it still remains a prevalent treatment choice clinically for soft tissue damage and inflammation“).  In fact, the authors went on to review other studies showing that BPC-157 helped heal MUSCLES, tendon-to-bone injuries (avulsions), not to mention systemic muscle issues seen in various disease processes.

For those who may be concerned about the potential CANCER-CAUSING / CANCER-SPREADING effects of taking a product that increases angiogenesis (increases new blood vessel formation such as seen with VEGF, which can be a double-edged sword), here is what these authors — authors that declared no competing interests or FINANCIAL COI — had to say on the subject.

“Despite the tumour-promoting effects of many growth factors and peptides, BPC 157 has been shown to inhibit and counteract increased expression of VEGF and subsequent signalling pathways thus avoiding VEGF-tumorigenesis. Furthermore, BPC 157 inhibits the growth of several tumour lines and can counteract tumour cachexia [body wasting and atrophy].”

As far as other research for other BPC-related benefits are concerned, you could head on over to PubMed and take a gander at the 125+ studies on the subject (HERE), which not only show benefit for musculoskeletal issues, but for a wide range of illnesses including MS, various forms of INFLAMMATORY BOWEL DISEASE, DEPRESSION, CHRONIC STRESS, PARKINSON’S, STOMACH ULCERS, BLOOD PRESSURE ISSUES, and yes, even hangovers. 

As far as side effects, after combing through the studies and looking at message boards of people taking the stuff, I have only found / read about one — nausea or queasiness — if too much is taken.  And while studies show that taking this peptide orally actually works for gut-related problems, peptides (think insulin here) are almost always injected because they cannot survive the stomach’s harsh environment.

While I am not suggesting that you try BPC-157 due to the fact there are few human studies, I do know several FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE professionals that have been using it extensively in their clinics for years.  Notice that I did not use the word “prescribing” here.  That’s because BPC-157 is not a patentable prescription drug; more than likely the reason you have not heard much about it from the medical community at large. 

In online discussions with physicians who are using it clinically (as well as personally), however, the thing that keeps coming up over and over again is just how effective it is for such a wide variety of problems.  As far as where to get it, how to mix it, how to dose it, etc, etc, etc, those are questions that you will have to answer using other sources.  The one thing I will mention is that in my conversations, numerous experts said not to use cheap Chinese product because you have no idea what you are really getting, both potency-wise and toxicity-wise.  Stick with American-made.

While BPC-157 might still be controversial in some circles, what’s not controversial — it’s well established — is that reducing the amount of systemic inflammation in your body can provide an almost limitless number of amazing health benefits.  That’s why I suggest that people start taking the bull by the horns — even if it means doing so with baby steps — and start removing systemic inflammation from their lives (HERE).  

Oh, and if you felt today’s post was worthwhile, be sure to let others know.  Other than sitting down and jawing over a cup of coffee (IF SENSITIVE, drink hot tea), the best way to reach the people you love and value most may still be by liking, sharing, or following on FACEBOOK.

As is always the case with anything new or novel, be sure and ask your doctor if BPC-157 is right for you before even thinking about trying it on your own.  The statements found in this post have not been evaluated by the FDA.  The information found on my site and particularly in this post is just that — strictly for informational purposes only.   It is not meant to replace or substitute for the recommendations or advice of your primary care physician or medical provider. The information on my site is also not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease.  If you believe you have an actual medical condition, please contact your nearest health care provider immediately.


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One Response

  1. Hi Russell….good write up on BPC 157. I started taking it about 2 years ago for severe IBS and it was miraculous in bringing me back to a functional level. Not fixed but functional. What I wanted to mention was that for me it causes anxiety like symptoms. I say anxiety like because unlike real anxiety it does not have the ‘doom/darkness’ factor. I feel spaced out, jittery, tight chested and ears ring like crazy. I’ve suffered with anxiety for 40 years and know it well so it took me a few cycles of BPC 157 to realize I wasn’t sliding into anxiety but reacting to the BPC 157. I googled it and found a number of guys on reddit said BPC 157 had caused severe anxiety and even panic attacks. Several swore off it and sold their remaining stock. Just thought I’d pass that info along.

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