Lyme disease is a tick-borne disease that is sweeping the nation. It is a very complicated disease to treat, both for the conventional western medical community and alternative medical practitioners, because it morphs so rapidly, it hides, and it is exceedingly difficult to destroy.
Healing from Lyme requires getting to the source, and detoxing plays a crucial role in this. It is however a multifaceted problem that requires a multi-therapeutic approach.
Fighting Lyme Disease
The first and most obvious thing to fight lyme disease is to prevent tick bites in the first place. Beginning in January through June and then again in the fall from the end of August through November, you must be very aware of where you are hiking or camping. The hot spot zones for Lyme seems to be Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, New York, Vermont, Virginia and Wisconsin; although now it is reported that every state has Lyme disease cases.
After hiking you want to ensure you properly examine your body for any tick bites, and make sure not to miss the back of your legs, arms, and back.
The type of tick that carries lyme disease is the deer tick, a small tick that is about the size of a pencil tip. If you find a deer tick on your skin, it’s important to remove it carefully with tweezers, and ensure the head is fully removed from your skin.
If the tick is embedded in your skin for less than 36 hours, you have a much better chance of steering clear of contracting Lyme disease. But to be on the safe side, even if the tick was imbedded for 24 hours, (and you never hear me suggest taking antibiotics) you should ask your doc for a prescription for Doxycycline.
This antibiotic will clear infection so that hopefully, you won’t run into problems later. It is necessary at the beginning stage, because it doesn’t give the spirochetes any time to morph into later stages of the disease, which makes them more difficult to treat.
Phases of Lyme Disease
Borrelia Burgdorferi (the bacteria that causes Lyme Disease) has the potential to transform into three different phases.The first phase is called the spirochete phase, in which can cause many uncomfortable symptoms. The borrelia spirochete is a twisty looking bacterium that burrows deep into tissues, joints and organs by drilling holes. In fact, if you see it under a microscope, it looks like a corkscrew. That is why symptoms such as joint pain, knee pain and small joint pain are common complaints.
The second phase is referred to as the cell wall deficient phase because the bacteria easily slips into your blood. During this phase the borrelia bacteria has no cell wall, which makes it more difficult for your immune system to attack this offending pathogen and makes it nearly impossible for an antibiotic treatment to be effective. The bacteria sticks together in little city type structures, which protect the inner lining, making it almost indestructible. This phase also lends itself to autoimmunity. In an attempt to kill this virulent pathogen, the immune system ends up attacking its own tissue, organs, and joints.
The third phase is the most serious, and it is called the cyst phase. With any challenge to their survival (such as long term antibiotics or natural remedies) the borrelia spirochetes will literally swallow themselves, and develop into cysts. These cysts lie dormant, and are able to withstand many attackers including heavy-duty antibiotics, starvation, immune system bombardment, and almost anything exogenous intervention. These cysts become cocoon-like homes that protect the spirochetes.
It is important to work with a professional who really understands the different phases and different methods needed to effectively attack the spirochetes, because as we have examined- too much or two little of any treatment can worsen the symptoms. On top of this, you have to account for the herxheimer reaction, which is a natural bodily process in which the body feels more sick before it gets better. This is due to the endotoxin-like products released by harmful microorganisms as they die, which can make you feel worse even though you are effectively killing the pathogen.
Can Your Body Get Rid of Lyme Disease?
Because it is incredibly difficult to test for Lyme disease (especially as it morphs through its different phases), and because Lyme is often accompanied by multiple other forms of infections or issues related to toxicity and autoimmune disorders, it’s not clear if we can the body can ever be 100% free from lyme disease. I can however confirm that by taking a conscious and calculated multi therapeutic approach, that you can indeed live symptom-free.
Lyme Detox is Not Enough
This complicated disease requires more than a detox, because aforementioned there are many other facets to Lyme, which often trigger an autoimmune reaction in the body. If caught early enough, antibiotics can be extremely useful, but once you hit the chronic stage (more than 6 months with progressive symptoms), the worst thing you can do is take an antibiotic.
Many doctors suggest antibiotics called “Cell Wall Inhibitors” to treat Lyme, but the problem with this medication is that it can force the Lyme spirochete into the cyst stage (the third stage of lyme disease). This stage comes with very nasty symptoms, and are worsened by the co-infections.
There are two common co-infections (acquired with the Lyme) carried by ticks. One is called Babesia which is a protozoa similar to malaria with viral type symptoms such as intermittent fever, fatigue, chills, headache, nausea, vomiting, depression and more. The other is Bartonella, a gram-negative bacteria with symptoms such as fatigue, fever, headache, an unusual rash, swollen glands and more.
Following a Lyme detox diet is not enough to properly heal the body from this complicated disease, but it is a way to support the body through your treatment.
Lyme Detox Diet
Although a detox is not the only tool to heal from Lyme symptoms, it is a necessary part of the healing journey. A Lyme detox diet is a lifestyle diet that eliminates inflammatory foods and embraces whole foods that heal cells from the inside out.
The diet focuses on consuming good fats (like quality sources of saturated fat and cholesterol), moderate amounts of healthy proteins (i.e. grass-fed and pastured animals), and lots of organic leafy greens and a variety of non-starchy vegetables. Starchy vegetables, grass-fed dairy, legumes, fermented foods, nuts, seeds, and low-glycemic fruits are consumed in moderation. Healthy sweets, like dark chocolate or stevia-sweetened desserts, can be enjoyed sparingly.
The diet works for three main reasons:
- It down-regulates cellular inflammation
- It produces cellular detoxification, because it supports the regeneration of the cell membrane
- It supports hormone regulation
The majority of this diet plan can be achieved by making three conscious changes:
- Remove bad fats and replace them with good fats.
Man-made fats like hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, margarine, and trans fats are used as cheap alternatives to extend the shelf life of foods replacing natural, good fats. These oils denature very easily, since they are sensitive to heat and light, and are likely rancid before they make their way into your kitchen or restaurant meal.
Healthy fats include whole-food sources (like avocados and coconut meat), as well as cold-pressed organic oils (like olive, coconut, avocado oil), pasture-raised, grass-fed butter and ghee, and animal fats like tallow and lard.
- Remove low quality or highly processed meat and replace it with pasture-raised, organic meat.
You are not only what you eat, but also what your food ate; and this is why it is imperative to consume only pasture-raised, organic animal products (meat, eggs, and dairy). When animals are fed an unnatural diet of only grain (usually GMO), their fat stores highly inflammatory omega 6 fatty acids, instead of anti-inflammatory omega 3’s, which leads to a myriad of health problems in humans.
Instead of factory farmed animal products, you want to invest in local, organic, grass-fed and pastured meats and eggs, and wild caught, low-mercury fish. Low mercury fish include salmon, sardines, mussels, rainbow trout, and Atlantic mackerel.
- Remove all processed grains and sugars
Eliminating sugar and everything that the body turns into sugar (aka grains) may be challenging, but often makes the most dramatic impact on health. These highly processed grains and sugars generate constant inflammation in the body and provide very little to no nutritional benefit. Spiking blood glucose throughout the day also leads to insulin and leptin resistance, which prevents your hormones from communicating with one another effectively (or at all).
Removing Toxins From Your Life
Eliminating toxins from your life is addressing one of the root cause of autoimmunity, and failing to do so means your body is constantly struggling to get back to baseline. When you’re dealing with Lyme disease, this is especially important because your body needs every ounce of its energy to heal.
Removing toxins from your life generally requires a total lifestyle overhaul because we live in a society that opts for short term toxic solutions to our problems without factoring their long term impact on our health.
Top sources of toxins are found in:
- Household cleaning agents (dishwasher tablets, bathroom and kitchen sprays and gels)
- Furniture, carpet, and appliances (toxic glues found in cabinets, mattresses, pillows, carpets, flame retardant)
- Most tap water ( full of fluoride, chlorine, medications, hormones, antibiotics, birth control and psychotropic drugs)
- Air (car fumes)
- Food (food-like-products, hormones, antibiotics, herbicides, and pesticides)
- Amalgam fillings (mercury dental fillings)
- Vaccines/ the flu shot (contain mercury, aluminum, formaldehyde, aborted fetus tissue and propylene glycol)
- Plastics and styrofoam (BPAs, phthalates)
- Beauty care products (makeup, shampoo/ conditioner, soaps, deodorants)
You can also view top detox supplements from Revelation Health.
Lyme disease is a tick-borne illness that can quickly transform in the body is not treated properly. The three phases of the disease require a distinct approach, which is best led by a qualified professional. A Lyme detox diet is an important part of supporting your body’s healing process, but itself is not enough to heal the disease.
Other aspects to address include the co-infections that generally accompany Borrelia Burgdorferi, as well as removing any other source of toxic exposure in your day to day life.