Have you ever woken up with extra “bags” or discoloration under your eyes the morning after a great night out with very little sleep? Of course, most of us have at one point or another, but unfortunately many chronic Lyme patients are noticing this issue without the benefit of any of the fun associated with the previous night. It’s the way many patients wake up first thing in the morning as a matter of course, and we refer to them as “shiners.”
What are shiners and what is this reaction? It’s an inflammatory response called an IgG (Immunoglobulin G) reaction, and in the case of Lyme patients, it is almost certainly a reaction to particular foods the patient has eaten as many as 3 days prior. This reaction is also very similar to the way your body reacts when it detects foreign bacteria, viruses, parasites, and fungus (candida).
If you’ve been paying attention to posts in the Lyme community, the word “stevia” has been a hot topic for the last few years. You’ve probably seen comments like… “Stevia can cure Lyme disease!”; “No, stevia causes cancer and infertility!”; “Stevia can’t be absorbed in the human body!”; I’ve been putting it in my coffee for years, so why am I not cured of Lyme?”
In this short and admittedly non-comprehensive guide, we attempt to put some ideas to rest and to offer a small bit of common sense regarding this plant that various cultures have been using as a food additive for more than 400 years.
Many Lyme disease and chronically ill patients are probably aware that Ionic Foot Baths can be a non-invasive and natural way to help the body remove toxic substances quickly.
For the uninitiated, most typical ionic foot baths consist of a tub of salted, clean water (usually distilled) with two stainless steel plates placed in the foot bath that pass a low-amp electrical current (usually 3-7 amps) through the water to dislodge toxins in the body that are pulled out immediately into the ionized wate
Our body is designed to naturally eliminate toxic materials, and the two main types of toxins it encounters are water-soluble and fat-soluble. Toxins that are water-soluble, are relatively easy to flush from one’s body via the blood and kidneys by drinking about 3 quarts of water, evenly space throughout the day.
But fat-soluble toxins are more difficult for the body to remove. They tend to be the heavy metals, pesticides, preservatives, pollutants, plastics, and other environmental chemicals we encounter in our daily lives, and they must be converted to water-soluble toxins before the body has the ability to eliminate them.
Greek physician Hippocrates, who is considered the “Father of Modern Medicine,” is famously quoted as saying, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” When it comes to treating chronic Lyme disease most patients find that paying strict attention to what they put into their body besides medicine and supplements can play a major role in their recovery. And beyond this, food can become a major factor in dictating whether a patient improves or declines based upon how their body reacts to their food intake.
When seeking treatment for Lyme disease, most chronic Lyme patients understand the need to take a number of supportive substances to help them repair damage from the bacteria, stave off further infection and to improve cellular function and protection. The bacteria attacks healthy cells and weakens one’s bodily defenses, and without some kind of supportive measures imbalances can occur.
We polled a number of chronic Lyme patients across the country and asked them to reveal the contents of their personal medicine cabinets.
Everything is connected, and we are all multifaceted beings. But as we go about our daily routine, we seldom think about it until some obstruction or jarring event comes into our lives to rattle our cages and make us look at ourselves more closely. Such is the case with chronic Lyme disease, and as I talk to more and more Lyme patients across the country, I’m finding that their experiences frequently match my own when it comes to moving through the illness to complete healing.
In 1969, author Elizabeth Kübler-Ross published her book “On Death & Dying,” and in it she presented a famous formulation of the stages of grief that dying people tend to go through as they come to terms with the realization that they will soon pass. Since the book’s publishing, her stages-of-grief system has become more popular than her book, and it is now a part of our modern cultural awareness. Her five stages include denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.
Inspired by Kübler-Ross’ work, I have begun to notice similar but different stages of consciousness, experiences and emotions for chronic Lyme patients as they move to complete healing. One of the differences in the staging system I’ve developed is that a patient can get stuck in a stage and never progress to complete healing. Conversely in the stages of grief, a patient ultimately moves through the system and reaches the final conclusion of death whether they like it or not.
Like most Lyme patients, I went for a long period of time of being sick and undergoing tests before I received a definitive diagnosis. Like most patients, I was used to trusting my traditional medical doctor because whenever I had a cold or a fever, he would prescribe some antibiotics and I would get better. As simple as that.
However, when I came in with Lyme symptoms, my doctor didn’t have a clue. He ran his usual battery of tests, but because I didn’t have cancer, diabetes or heart disease, he literally said, “Oh well. I guess we’ll just have to chalk this up to being ‘just one of those things.'”
When I pressed him further on what exactly he meant by that, he said, “Your symptoms aren’t life threatening, so maybe you can learn to live with them.”
Rocephin (ceftriaxone) is a cephalosporin antibiotic commonly used to treat many kinds of bacterial infections, including severe or life-threatening forms such as meningitis. It’s a favorite go-to antibiotic in these cases because of its well-known ability to cross the blood-brain barrier (see study). For this reason may doctors and LLMDs have been prescribing rocephin to patients suffering from neuroborreliosis or Lyme infection that has entered the brain. In these cases, rocephin is administered intravenously through injection or PICC line.