A Natural Approach
One of my very best friends was diagnosed with a chronic condition of Lyme disease. It really made me look deep at the bacteria that could create such havoc. I mean it is just a bacteria right?! Usually viruses are the ones that come in strong and hang dormant in our body. These are my thoughts on how to approach chronic Lyme conditions, and I look forward in growing more knowledge with her and anyone who would like to share their journey.
Here are my first thoughts how to tackle and eliminate this bacteria
- Treat with natural strong gram negative antibacterial foods.
- Support the immune system and adrenal glands with adaptogen rich foods.
- Eliminate toxins that are consumed orally, topically and inhaled.
- Understand how the sympathetic and parasympathetic reaction can keep us in chronic pain.
- Understand the power of breathing scientifically.
Along with being an integrated physician with a doctorate in traditional Chinese medicine, I am science forward and a researcher.
- Strong gram negative antibacterial foods. The gram negative bacteria transmitted in Lyme disease is B. burgdorferi. Most herbs fight bacteria. You just want to make sure the temperature and quality of the herb is what you need. For example, ginger is always hot quality even if in a cold drink. So if your body is running cold, ginger is perfect to kill bacteria and warm your body systemically. I almost daily make a drink with ginger turmeric and cinnamon. Really strong healers. At night your body wants to cool down. To sleep better, think about herbs that cool you like mint, rose, lavender and sarsaparilla. Wine is warming, vodka is cooling, whiskey is warming. Also if having a hard time sleeping at night have your dinner meals be cooling property like fish, rice , dandelion, seaweed, mushroom,millet, pumpkin seed, and squash. A really strong antibacterial recipe is fresh oregano, sea salt and garlic muddled in olive oil. You could put this topically on a wound, or take it by the spoonful.
- Foods that support the immune system and adrenal glands. Your immune system and adrenal glands are working hard and need special foods to nourish them. These include thousands of years of health testimony to include maca, ashwaganda, rose, black cohosh, liver, oysters, and sardines.
- Food and skin care can create a toxic environment in our body. It can be hard to change habits, but our immune system may have been out of whack before this bacteria came to hang out, so any chemicals in your skin care products or in your food need to be eliminated. Removing these chemicals will help your immune system focus on just your Lyme disease. Check out the endocrine disruptors list here. It may seem like you have to change a lot, but it will empower you and strengthen you forever.
- Sympathetic and parasympathetic is your “fight or flight” hormone response. It is your survival. This is the primal system that needs nourishment. How many of us live in a constant stress? In our society, it is almost glorified the amount of stress we have to how successful we are. But in realty, it is the peace we have through our challenges that make us healthy and strong. The fight or flight response is like a gazelle fearing a lion. Sometimes the lion is close and sometimes at a distance, but the gazelle still worries. We have to stop the worries. When I find myself in a gazelle moment, I remember that everything I have feared in my past, I am still ok, possibly stronger and more loving due to those challenges. When in this stress response, we do not breathe or digest properly, and we physically strain our body. True science.
- Breathing science. One of the easiest things to control yet we have many challenges is breathing. In traditional medicine back thousands of years, waking up at 3-5am means our lungs are deficient. Try meditation, yoga, or a trending breathing regimen. It is so important to get enough oxygen. About 4 minutes without oxygen is death. Every cell in your body needs oxygen to survive! When we do not get enough oxygen day after day, we may only support the vital organs. Without adequate oxygen our muscles hurt. Do you get enough oxygen to thrive? Can you breathe in slowly for 10 seconds? 15? 20? Oxygen is hand in hand with pain. One great way to expand your intake of oxygen is singing. Pick a song and sing as far along as you can without a breath. Push that limit more and more. Force your diaphragm down to expand more oxygen intake. Look how large lungs are in our body! So important …. and simple.
Your lungs want to get stronger so try what works for you!
How to start!
- Do your own thorough intake from head to toe, with every detail. The more you express of symptoms, the easier you can see daily your progress. When we see things going in the right direction, that positive feeling (parasympathetic goal!) will help us breathe deeper and get momentum. And when trying a healing modality that is not working you will see it right away and be able to try something else. Watch this video on how to fill out a medical intake form. Click here to get a printable Health Intake Form including medication and goals list. This intake form explains why details are so important and how to notice them.
- Now that you have an intake, put everything of of concern on a separate paper. Write out every detail regarding that concern. For example, if you wake up at 2, 4 and 6:30am, write that down. Talk about why you wake up, including details if sweating or vivid dreams, and how you fall back asleep. This way when you only wake up 2 times a night and no sweat, you can see your body moving in the right direction of healing. Remember our body works as a system, embrace every part of your body and never call something bad or use the word always. ( Bad knee, I always get headaches) When you do this, you will always have headaches and a bad knee. Use words to describe like “challenging,” “uncomfortable,” and “concerns.” An example sentence would be “My knee is a bit unhappy and I have some pain on the inside of my knee when I walk too much.” This way you have described the pain and how it happens with a goal for it to be better than just a label of bad. Tell your knee how proud of it you are for its journey and all it has done for you. It may sound cheesy, but your body should be spoken to like you would a friend, and the parasympathetic (relax and digest) you get from those words are science proven.
- Remove all the toxins you can in your life. Your skin is first line of defense, yet many skin care products are full of chemicals. These chemicals absolutely go through the skin into our bodies. This includes laundry detergent, sunblock, lotions, shampoos, and hair dyes. You can make your own (which is empowering) or find nice products without chemicals. Click here for a list of chemicals through the Environmental Working Group. Of course processed foods will have cheap chemical ingredients and fake flavors. I hate to waste, but when I have a product that is not good for me, I call it no regrets throw out. Doing this alone will give so much power to focus on your Lyme symptoms.
- You need to strengthen your digestion for the best nutritional absorption. There is a reason if you get bloated eating certain foods. Solve the reasons and do not just eliminate healthy foods. For example, if beans make you uncomfortable, do not say I can’t eat beans, but solve the root of the problem. The production of gas in the stomach is usually from not enough fermented foods and good bacteria to break down the beans. You want to assist your stomach in breaking down food by adding to you diet 1. fermented foods 2. food enzymes. Fermented foods include kombucha, kimchi, sauerkraut, raw local honey, yogurt, apple cider vinegar raw, nutritional yeast, and miso. Do not heat fermented foods because they have that good bacteria alive and ready to work for you! Make a plan to pick one and have everyday. I easily can do a apple cider vinegar with honey and water each morning. Add some lemon and it is a very nice drink! For food enzymes you have foods including pineapple, papaya, kiwi and mango. I cut up a pineapple and put in the freezer for my son to take a few cubes out every day and eat after a meal. I was a little shocked how effective it was for him when he said his stomach was bloated feeling. Click here to read more about my thoughts on cause of disease.
- So now we are ready to eat! When you really want to eat for health, nutrients should be easy to absorb in the digestion. Our stomach is about 110 degrees and acidic. It wants to be this way. Soups and stews are a great way to leach out nutrients and have them at about the temperature of your stomach. This way your stomach does not have to work hard heating food up, breaking down enzymes, and getting nutrients out to the body. Though this is science based, some people want raw foods. If you are eating raw but drinking warm tea, then you understand the concept. If you do not want to try eating food in soups and stews, you can try curing foods in sea salt, lemons, apple cider vinegar, or honey. Eat with intention to heal, then call the rest fun foods!
- Foods to heal! Think about what a bacteria, virus, parasite, fungus DOES NOT want to live in. Onions, oregano, parsley, turmeric, garlic, ginger, sea salt, dandelion. And think about antioxidants for inflammation including blueberries, goji berries, broccoli, spinach, carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, green tea and cabbage. (Find your favorites and use at each meal)
- Before you take a supplement you should know what you are low in by taking a blood test. If you just take a magnesium supplement and do not know if you need it, you can upset the balance with complementary nutrients. Calcium contracts muscles and magnesium relaxes, so only eat food with a natural bond organically stable with the correct percent of nutrients. An example of the most important minerals to survive, and most confused, is salt. Salt is needed to exchange in every cell with potassium at 3 sodiums to 2 potassiums. If we only do white salt, we do not get that potassium we vitally need. If you look the composition of sea salt, you will see that sodium and potassium is in proportion as needed in the body. You can fact check this and also see the recommended daily allowance is also that proportion. Sea salt also have 80 more minerals like calcium, magnesium, and potassium. The body needs these in small amounts and in the right proportion as in the natural bond of sea salt. Check out a website discussing the importance of sea salt here. Try for yourself. Take a pinch about 3 times a day. In summer months and if sweating, take more. You will most likely know when you have had enough or want more nutritionally. Here is a quick 2 minute video explaining the importance of salt for nerve function and ATP function.
I hope you found value in reading my thoughts on conquering the condition of Lyme disease. Fight to eradicate it from your body and never give up. A little thought on semantics: If you say you have a bad knee or bad back, you will always have it. If you say I am working on getting this back happy again, you will.
I have a forum if you would like to discuss any thoughts… happy or trials, I welcome the conversation.