Nutrition and Your Genes
15 REASONS.....why you can't get rid of Lyme
.....or any other chronic illness
15 REASONS.....why you can't get rid of Lyme
.....or any other chronic illness
With Lyme and its coinfections, you want to bring the body back into a healthy, balanced state. I came to understand that the body is a self-healing system that can and will regenerate itself over time. I simply had to provide the right nutrients and whole foods, heal the gut, remove the toxins and gently reduce the pathogenic load—- a seemingly simple approach to a very complicated illness.
Each one of the following reasons ‘why you can’t get rid of Lyme' deserves a detailed article all of its own. Use it as a quick reference. They are not in any particular order; but all of equal importance. This is not a complete ‘how to,’ but merely a checklist to keep you on your path of recovery. It can be overwhelming; take it slow...one step at a time.
15 REASONS, REALLY?
15 REASONS, REALLY?
- ALLERGIC RESPONSE/FOOD INTOLERANCES- Some foods cause an allergic response or are linked to food intolerances. Most common are gluten, dairy, soy, corn, eggs, shellfish and nuts. I learned that I have HLA genes that make me susceptible to gluten sensitivity and possibly vulnerable to celiac disease. So I don't eat gluten (which means, absolutely no grains.) Remember, grains include oats, barley, rye, wheat, and corn…..all of it! There's the ancient grains, too; amaranth, quinoa, and millet. They must be gluten free. Plus, most grains are GMO and you want to stay clear of GMOs. The glyphosate in GMO’s will rip holes in your gut. If you are missing your granola, best to eat quinoa, amaranth, millet, and seeds like chia, sunflower, and pumpkin (parasites don’t like pumpkin seeds.) I avoid corn and soy all together! They are 95% likely to be GMO. I seldom eat shellfish anymore. It’s just a personal choice. I think it is most likely contaminated with bacteria. And I chose my fish carefully; eating wild caught and not larger fish which tend have the most mercury content (King mackerel, marlin, orange roughy, shark, swordfish, tilefish, ahi tuna, and bigeye tuna.) If you must eat tuna, eat 'skipjack' and no more than two times a week. When in doubt, smaller is better, like anchovies, sardines, and scallops. I subscribe to a couple of free phone APPs that have helped me. One is called ‘Seafood Watch,’ a guide to sustainable seafood and ‘Safe Sushi’ for checking mercury content in seafood.
- FOOD AND SUGAR- Are you still eating processed foods and/or foods with sugar or syrups in them? This is easily corrected by eating a clean, nutrient-dense diet that satisfies you and negates the cravings for sugary foods. I don’t eat anything that is in a package or at a drive-thru. All meals are made at home from whole foods without sugar or additives, preservatives, dyes, artificial flavorings and taste enhancers (e.g., MSG), emulsifiers, hydrogenated fats and high fructose corn syrup, to name a few. Take out all artificial sweeteners, too. It’s okay to have a little stevia or xylitol, but not agave. Agave contains high fructose corn syrup! (Btw, there's mercury hidden in high fructose syrup.) Eating sugar and other junk is like throwing gas on the pathogenic fire. All of these alter the gut flora (or microbiome) in favor of the bad guys (i.e., zonulin; remember the bad guys and good guys from the MethylGenetic videos?) It is VERY important to not only change the terrain, but maintain the terrain! This way, the good flora can win. Junk or processed food does not provide the necessary vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and essential fatty acids required to heal a broken biochemistry. BTW, most restaurant food is processed food (sorry), which means it's junk food; so make good choices when dining out. Remember, you are what we eat! A simple rule of thumb; if God made it, eat it, if not, don't eat it. Learn more here.
- REMOVE AMALGAMS/ROOT CANALS/CAVITATIONS– Amalgams are extremely toxic and you should have them removed as soon as possible. I did. It’s necessary if you want to get well. You will see a noticeable difference in your health; you may even turn the corner and feels burst of energy and overall wellness. Mercury toxicity has been linked to chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, lowered immune function, panic attacks, sleep disturbances, memory loss, chronic headaches, neurological symptoms, joint pain, candida, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, and Cancer, just to name a few. I had my mercury amalgams replaced years ago and would highly recommend this to everyone. Even if you are not ill now, I think it should be your #1 preventative health action. In addition to amalgam fillings, there may be old root canals that need extracting and possible cavitations (the wisdom teeth extraction site) that need to be addressed as well. It’s important to interview and decide on a good 'biological dentist.' Ask questions. Be sure they use PRF (plasma rich fibrin) after pulling the tooth. Also, choose a biological dentist that is using ozone and/or laser post surgery to keep those sockets clean. I have suggested some books on the subject under Dental Wellness here. For both prevention and maintenance, I suggest oil pulling. You can use sesame, sunflower, or coconut oil. I prefer coconut. A comprehensive resource is the book Oil Pulling Therapy, by Dr. Bruce Fife. Though the research is limited, there are some scientific studies that support the benefits of oil pulling, including those showing its benefit on different types or oral bacteria, on dental caries, on plaque/gingivitis and on oral microorganisms: Effect of oil pulling on Streptococcus mutans count in plaque and saliva.
- DRUGS AND MEDS KILL GOOD FLORA – Antibiotics wipe out both GOOD and the bad flora; this indiscriminate killing effect has been likened to clear-cutting a forest. Once this clear-cutting happens, the gut terrain is never the same. There are also drugs (in addition to antibiotics) that damage gut flora –such as antidepressants containing fluoride compounds, NSAIDS damage the intestinal lining, and acetaminophen is toxic to the liver. Research your drugs to see if they are noted for killing gut flora. I used antibiotics throughout my life for various infections, but intuitively knew I did not want to use them to treat my Lyme Disease. I believe the best time to take antibiotics for Lyme is if you just got bit and run immediately to the doctor for antibiotics (with tick in hand inside a jar for further testing.) Once the Lyme is in your system, time is of the essence. The spirochetes can set up house in 24-48 hours and then it’s too late for antibiotics. Seems doxycycline is the drug of choice. Many folks are healing from Lyme and co-infections using herbal preparations, homeopathic remedies, supplements and nutrition. Healthy gut flora is responsible for normal gastrointestinal function and protection from infection; it regulates metabolism and comprises more than 80% of our immune system. This is very important for those with chronic infections.
- CHRONIC INFECTIONS- Infections like candida, parasites, bacteria, fungus, mycoplasmas and viruses increase our pathogenic load. It is easy just to focus on one type of infection such as Lyme Disease or candida and overlook other co-infections. But once the immune system is compromised, we have little defense against a whole range of pathogens. In reality, it is difficult to determine which infection is the most debilitating. One of the best ways I found is energy testing. You can go to a practitioner that uses an Asyra Bioresonance Health Screening, a Zyto Scan, ART (Dr. Klinghardt’s Autonomic Response Testing.) Or, you can go to your local kinesiologist and he can muscle test you for which is the most predominant at that time. Like most of you, I had a whole symphony of infections that needed to be treated. I have found my Herpes Simplex and EBV (Epstein Barr Virus) to be very pesky. I used high dosages of vitamin A for viruses, high doses of Lysine for Herpes, and a mixture of herbs and tinctures that treat a wide range of coinfections. My kinesiologist is an herbal expert and I am studying to be an herbalist, so I am open to herbal treatment. There’s a great deal of information on herbs available online or you can check Buhner’s or Dr. Cowden’s protocol.
- HERBAL DOSAGES- Don't take too low of an herbal dosage for an insufficient period of time – I have seen this over and over on the Lyme disease and parasite forums. Herbs have to be taken in fairly high and consistent doses to achieve remission. Everyone wants a quick fix, but there isn’t one. Many start treating and feel worse due to the die-off from pathogens. Then they release endotoxins which create a cytokine cascade, in addition to the effects of their active infection. I went through the same experience when I first started with the herbs. I pushed through it all. It can take 6-12 months to see a difference. I am currently studying to be a Certified Clinical Herbalist, but worked with my kinesiologist and Dr. Klinghardt’s group to determine what herbs were best for me. Again, as many of you know; check Dr. Cowden or Dr. Buhner’s websites, or take a look at Dr. Marty Ross's web based Treat Lyme Book.
- TOXIC PERSONAL CARE AND HOUSEHOLD PRODUCTS- Eliminate commercial body lotions and excess use of sunscreen, bug spray, toothpaste, make-up, non essential hair care products, perfumed synthetic soaps, body scents, teeth whiteners, heavily scented laundry detergents and fabric softeners, synthetic cleaning products. It takes time, but you can do it. They add an additional toxic burden to a body that is already extremely toxic. Go to EWG’s Skin Deep products site Skin Deep and/or get the APP for your phone . While you’re there, you might as well download their APP called ‘Dirty Dozen,’ and ‘Clean 15’ for a handy list of fruits and vegetables without pesticides and herbicides. Then, it will always be with you when you are out grocery shopping.
- ENVIRONMENTAL TOXINS– Off-gassing from new furniture, carpets, new vehicle upholstery (new car smell), fresh paint, mold in the home or workplace, excessive EMFs (electromagnetic fields) and other dirty electricity exposure, cigarette smoke, air fresheners and scented candles (made from petroleum, not soy.) I am also careful to avoid these as much as possible. I gave up my cell phone in 1998, before we knew how damaging it could be, but sadly, bought another one a year later, out of necessity. However, I keep my cell phone either turned off, in 'airplane mode' or encased in a special EMF protective case (Cruz.) If you can't do that, keep it about 15 feet away from you. I text most of the time and use the speaker phone whenever possible. I used to think the headsets (not Bluetooth) were the healthiest route until I saw a TED Talk that the cords just shuttle the brain damaging radio wave frequencies straight into your head. Since wifi is everywhere, I try and keep it out of my bedroom. If you must have it in your home, it is important to keep it as far as possible from where you sleep and spend most of your time, and to turn it off at night whenever possible. I use Stetzer Filters in my home. I like the 'Greenwave' brand the best; they provide an additional plug on the side of the Stetzer Filter. I hired a Building Biologist to help me determine where I had the most exposure and how to remedy it. Find one in your area; it's well worth the money. You will sleep so much better!
- EMOTIONAL TRAUMA and NEGATIVE EMOTIONS– It is really important to address anxiety, depression, sadness, self pity, feeling stuck or held back, frustration, guilt, low self confidence, loneliness, regret, betrayal, unhappy relationships, humiliation, shame and unfulfilled dreams. Over long periods, these weaken the human spirit and erode the body’s vitality, leading to disease and premature aging. I have faced many of these issues with one-on-one counseling over the years. After regular therapy sessions, I went a step further and began EMDR (eye movement desensitization reprocessing) to address my childhood and adult emotional traumas. It takes work, but it was an excellent experience for me. I revisited my traumatic incidents, and the feelings and beliefs about that incident. Then, I replaced them with calmness, feelings of peacefulness and empowerment. It works quickly to end or significantly lessen many symptoms: EMDR Help. EMDR taught me to move past these ‘blocks’ that may have been keeping me from accomplishing my goals by alleviating grief and loss, keeping successful relationships close and releasing those that were toxic. I let go of unhealthy and unsupportive relationships. I surround myself with loving friends and try and have some fun at least once ot twice a week if not more! I try and live each day with an attitude of gratitude…..sometimes it is very difficult to do when you have chronic Lyme Disease. Recently, it was brought to my attention that the CDC and Kaiser conducted a study on ACES (adverse childhood experiences) back in the mid 90’s whereby they looked at the health statistics related to physical, sexual, and emotional abuse, emotional neglect, divorce, substance abuse, mental illness and incarnation within families and the effect of these experiences on the incidence of disease, early death and even suicide. I believe that ACEs may be a contributing factor to such chronic illnesses as Lyme. Here's the link to the CDC and Kaiser Study. I have at least 8 ACES myself. You can take the test on Niki Gratrix’s website, to determine how many ACE’s you may have. Donna Jackson Nakazawa just wrote a great book called Childhood Disrupted: How Your Biography Becomes Your Biology! I just ordered mine. It’s about the link between ACES and such adult illnesses as heart disease, cancer and autoimmune disease.....and chronic Lyme is an autoimmune disease.
- CHIROPRACTIC/ACUPUNCTURE ADJUSTMENTS- I can’t stress enough the importance of maintaining your body’s alignment with chiropractic adjustments. Find a chiropractor that you like and get an adjustment every 4 to 6 weeks for maintenance and more frequently for chronic issues. That’s what I do. Chiropractors pride themselves on taking a natural, drugless approach to helping their patients reach their health goals. Essentially, the basic principle upon which the entire profession is built is that the body has the amazing, innate ability to heal itself (under the right conditions), and it is the chiropractor’s job to help create an environment to facilitate this. At the core of the numerous chiropractic miracle stories is a concept known as “vertebral subluxation.” When chiropractors use this phrase, they refer to mechanical compression and irritation to spinal joints and nerves. Because the nervous system controls every cell and organ in your body, chiropractors focus their attention on the health of your spine being properly aligned and, if there are shifts, helping the spine come back into alignment. That's why subluxation is so healing. Some chiropractors are kinesiologists and can tap into your energy fields with additional healing methodologies. Learn more. Acupuncture is another modality that might help you. It is an ancient Chinese system of complementary medicine that involves pricking the skin or tissues with needles, used to alleviate pain and to treat various physical, mental, and emotional conditions. I tried for a couple of months; it was interesting. There are no side effects and it is virtually, pain free. Here are some of the benefits of acupuncture.
- EXERCISE AND GROUNDING- I know you may be too tired to walk across the room on some days, I know I was. But you must get a little exercise. Start slow. Take a short walk in your neighborhood, go a little further when you can. Since my dogs passed away, I walk my neighbor’s dogs. It’s great therapy for me and I get my doggie fix and a little exercise at the same time! After I was able to walk around the block, I started walking around 2 and 3 times, then I crashed. One step forward, and two steps back. When I got stronger, I bought a small rebounder. Again, start slow, just bounce a little. First, do it for 5 minutes, then 10, then move up to 15 or 20 minutes, whatever works for you. This is the best way to get your lymphatic system moving, especially if you cannot spend the money or time on a professional lymphatic drainage therapist. Syncing your bare toes into wet grass, dirt, sand, or water is the latest trend in wellness. Known as 'earthing' or 'grounding,' when skin comes into contact with the ground, the human body becomes a sponge that soaks up negatively-charged electrons from the earth. This practice is quickly earning recognition as a novel way to protect your health and combat the insults of our current lifestyles. The modern concept of earthing made its debut in 2010 with the release of Clint Ober’s book, Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever?
- LYMPHATIC DRAINAGE/MASSAGE- Listen up, because this is so very important! The Lymphatic System is the most underrated part of our circulatory system. It’s so often neglected, especially with chronic diseases. I am here to say that lymphatic work has been a lifesaver for me. I tentatively started out by getting lymphatic treatments about every other week until I realized I really needed to go more frequently, at least once a week. Once you experience how much better you feel, you will become addicted, as I am. Our body contains approximately 3 quarts of lymphatic fluid, 5 1/2 quarts of blood; thus 50% as much lymph as blood! Why don’t more doctors talk about this? Healthy lymph fluid should have the consistency of thin fluid like milk but congested lymph becomes more like yogurt. So, the idea is that you are going to break that yogurt up and get it moving. The lymphatic system detoxifies and moves the waste from your body by cleaning the tissues and aids in cellular repair while eliminating toxins. If our lymphatic systems are not working properly; they become stagnant and make us sicker. Sadly, many health care practitioners rarely consider the critical role the lymphatic system plays in preventing disease and keeping us healthy. It becomes evident how poor lymphatic drainage can contribute to a wide range of dysfunction, numerous diseases and a lack of overall vitality. That is why it is so critical for folks with Lyme, Cancer, and other chronic illnesses to get regular lymphatic treatments. Also, you can aid in your lymphatic drainage at home by doing a little ‘dry brushing’ before you take a bath. A perfect scenario would be to rebound, dry brush and then take an epsom salt bath. Ahh! More Information.
- COLONICS AND COFFEE ENEMAS- First of all, many Lymies know it’s a very good idea to get a professional colonic right around the full moon when these critters are most active. As a matter of fact, the parasites seem to be most active 3 days after the full moon, according to Louise Gittleman, who wrote a fabulous book, Guess What Came to Dinner? You can choose from a closed system or an open system—-your preference. I tried both and I prefer the open system. It’s a good idea to get a colonic every week . Or, what I like to do is in between my professional colonics, I prepare my own coffee enemas at home. Why in the world would someone use coffee in an enema? I did my research. When I got over my initial resistance, I quickly saw the benefits of coffee enemas. I have since recommended them to so many other chronically ill people. Many have told me how wonderful they feel after doing it. Several said coffee enemas saved their lives. Indeed, they are most helpful for many types of conditions. The procedure is also inexpensive and can be done at home without special equipment. Coffee enemas were first popularized by Max Gerson, MD, author of A Cancer Therapy - Results of 50 Cases. Dr. Gerson pioneered nutritional therapy for cancer and other diseases with excellent results. His therapy combined coffee enemas with a special diet, juices and other supplements. The enemas were an integral part of the therapy. Get the poop here: Gerson Institute. Easy Retention Enema Directions with organic green coffee and extra nutrients!
- INFRARED SAUNAS- I have had an infrared sauna for many years now, before I knew I had chronic Lyme, coinfections and parasites. I will never give it up! I bought it for the detoxification benefits. Mine is a two person cedar infrared sauna. I was lucky, it was on sale. You can buy smaller and/or inexpensive ones for your home that are portable and easy to store. Infrared saunas have a litany of benefits and can improve your wellness. Most importantly, it may be effective in directly killing candida and parasites. It improves circulation and repairs processes, i.e., mitochondria produce more ATP when infrared rays are introduced. It causes the release of nitric oxide. This stimulates vasodilatation of the microcirculatory system, bringing more blood to the muscles. Heavy metals that often accumulate in toxic levels such as lead, cadmium, copper, manganese and nickel have been shown to detox with sweat (source). Toxic chemicals from our environment, such as pesticides and phthalates, can also be excreted through the body via sweat. Dr. Wilson, a holistic doctor and Nutritional Balancing pioneer, believes that the infrared rays and sweating inhibit the sympathetic nervous system and engages the parasympathetic nervous system (source). It also improves the immune system. The following effects of infrared saunas all work together to improve immune system function: improved circulation, improved lymphatic flow, improved mitochondria function and increase in body temp stimulates white blood cells.
- MINERAL DEFICIENCIES – This one is huge! So many of your are mineral deficient. Poor diet, stress, toxins, pharmaceutical drugs, OTC meds, parasites and other chronic infections all drain vital minerals from the body. Lyme loves manganese and uses it to sustain itself. Once the minerals are depleted, it takes a serious effort to restore them to normal levels. It is very difficult, if not impossible to heal the body in a mineral-depleted state. I put powdered electrolytes, along with some vitamin C powder, in my mountain spring water everyday. I add trace mineral drops to my protein drinks. I also make a point to take some additional mineral supplements that I know need from my mineral testing, i.e., zinc, potassium, molybdenum, boron, and chromium. It’s a good idea to put a teaspoon of Sole water into your drinking water as well. There are 84 minerals in Sole Himalayan Salt and some of the many benefits include:
- normalizes blood pressure
- balances the alkaline/acidity in the body
- balances sugar level in the blood
- vital for absorption of food particles through the intestinal tract
- clears up sinus congestion
- vital to the nerve cells for communication and information processing
- vital for sleep regulation
- vital for circulation
- vital to making the structure of bones firm
- dissolve and eliminate sediments which lead to stones and various forms of rheumatism like arthritis and kidney and gall bladder stones
- Let’s not forget magnesium! Personally, I work hard to keep my magnesium levels up, but let me remind you that magnesium is responsible for over 300 biochemical reactions in the body and most of us have low magnesium levels! In addition to electrolytes, you can drink Natural CALM and take Epsom/mineral salt baths every evening to keep your magnesium levels up.
WHEW! Any questions?