Treating Lyme Disease the natural way.
Lyme disease, a very common tick-borne infectious disease, often goes undiagnosed or becomes misdiagnosed. That can potentially become a real problem considering the fact that researchers believe the actual amount of infected people is up to 10 times greater than the amount reported.
Lyme disease, also known as Borreliosis, is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi, which can proliferate to every area in your body. An infected sheep tick or castor bean tick transmits the virus to humans through a bite (in North America it’s blacklegged deer tick).
Unfortunately, Borrelia burgdorferi has the ability to thrive within every area of the body, hiding from and suppressing the natural immune system. Lyme infections literally kidnap the immune system in s similar manner to AIDS.
Lyme is one of the most challenging, difficult conditions to diagnose and treat because it mimics other illnesses such as the flu, manifesting as diverse symptoms such as: headaches, muscle aches, stomach ulcers, constipation, and joint pain.
A weakened immune system coupled with suboptimal cellular function and protection, chronic bacterial infections, and exposure to environmental toxins, such as molds and parasites, can worsen things for those who suffer from chronic Lyme.
Some of my patients who are diagnosed with Lyme have struggled for years with undiagnosed symptoms that the doctors overlooked.
I have a client that had a chronic inflammatory problem that no one seemed to be able to figure out. After meticulous testing, it turns out he had a tick-borne infection. It is thought that many conventional doctors misdiagnose numerous cases of Lyme as fibromyalgia.
The right strategies, combined with working with a Functional Medicine practitioner can help address Lyme. The healing process can become frustrating and sometimes ostensibly undefeatable, but with time, effort, and a focus on a whole-system, integrative approach with the right practitioner, you can crack it. I’ve seen patients have incredible recoveries, especially when diagnosed and treated in the early stages.
Although I believe antibiotics become necessary for treating Lyme, many conventional doctors stop there. But to truly recover from Lyme disease, you want to work with a practitioner who takes a whole-system approach rather than simply believing a few courses of antibiotics will will sort it out.
If you suspect Lyme, the first step is to complete the Horowitz Lyme-MSIDS Questionnaire. This will help you pinpoint many Lyme-related symptoms and their severity.
If you believe you have Lyme, you should get tested in order to confirm your suspicion. It goes without saying that the sooner you confirm your condition and begin treatment, the better are your chances of recover.
The most popular conventional way to test for Lyme disease is a combination of the Western blot and ELISA test, which measure specific antibodies in the blood.
The problem with this and other conventional testing is that it’s not always precise. This approach also misses up to 60% of cases of early-stage Lyme disease, since it can take weeks for the body to develop measurable antibodies.
While the majority of conventional doctors are mistaken by not supporting your entire system, Functional Medicine becomes a systems-biology approach to personalised medicine that focuses on the underlying causes of the disease. The very definition of Functional Medicine states that we focus on WHY, not WHAT.
The good news is that with some work and effort, you can successfully treat Lyme disease. After a correct diagnosis, you want to become proactive about eradicating this disease.
If you suffer from Lyme and really want to get to know and understand healing strategies, I strongly recommend reading Why Can’t I Get Better? Solving the Mystery of Lyme and Chronic Disease, by Dr. Richard Horowitz. This book contains a wealth of referenced information.
Treating Lyme disease involves diagnosis followed by treatment with a Functional Medicine practitioner. This can become a challenging trial-and-error process that requires patience and effort.
As you work with your practitioner to eliminate Lyme disease, consider employing the following strategies:
1. Eat real whole food: The key here involves removing things that are bad for you such as processed foods and sugar and incorporating healthier food such as protein, healthy fats, and plenty of anti-inflammatory omega 3-rich foods like wild fish
2. Supplement cleverly: Many of nutrients, including herbs, can help with Lyme. I encourage you to work with a Functional Medicine practitioner to customise these and other supplements, which you can find in my store. These include immune-boosting herbs such as:
Cordycep, reishi, and maitake mushrooms that help kill off bad bacteria. I recommend ImmunoMax 24/7 which combines all three.
Immune-boosting vitamin D
Anti-inflammatory curcumin (found in turmeric)
3. Repopulate: While I believe they are undeniably crucial to treat Lyme, antibiotics kill off all bacteria (good as well as bad). After you’ve eliminated them, you want to repopulate with good bacteria. Eat probiotic-rich fermented vegetables such sauerkraut and kimchi. And supplement with a high-dose, multi-strain probiotic.
4. Address food sensitivities: Gluten, dairy, and other food sensitivities is likely to increase inflammation, weaken your immune system, and cause Lyme disease symptoms to become worse. You might want to consider doing a Food intolerance test
5. Get decent sleep: Studies show that sleep troubles and chronic fatigue are often closely linked to Lyme disease. Sleep deprivation has numerous consequences, including reduced levels of your feel-good hormone serotonin (I often see this with patients) and reduced immunity, giving pathogens more a better chance to increase.
6. Control stress: Chronic stress can destroy your immune system and aggravate Lyme disease symptoms. Whether you do yoga, deep breathing, or meditation, find something which can sustainably reduce your stress levels. I work with my patients using the Heartmath method which works wonders and is very quick to master.
7. Reduce your toxic load: These include heavy metals and pesticides, damage the nervous and immune systems and contribute to diabesity. If you suspect metal or kind toxicity, I can help you develop a customised detoxification plan.