Monday, January 2, 2017

Keeping Lyme at Bay

HAPPY NEW YEAR!! It has been awhile since I blogged last. And what a year 2016 has been....

I decided in May of 2016 to try a different approach to treatment and management of this disease. I felt like I had exhausted my antibiotic options.  Although the oral and IV antibiotics had brought me quite far, helped me to walk and regain my strength and energy again, they completely destroyed my immune system in the process.  At this point, modern medicine is not able to completely eradicate the Lyme and associated bacteria from our bodies.  With a severely disabled immune system from years of disease and antibiotics, and traces of bacteria remaining in my body, it was only a matter of time before the bacteria multiplied and symptoms began returning.  I have come to realize that the key to managing this disease is just that, management.  It appears to be impossible to overcome it completely but it can be managed effectively by keeping my immune system strong, and actively killing the bacteria with herbal antibiotics during flare-ups.

After switching to a herbal protocol in May, I went further downhill for the next two months as my body and the herbals fought against the bacteria again.  I was exhausted and so sick of fighting, but I was told to remain strong, stick to the protocol and I would emerge eventually in a better state.  So I endured and by the 8th week of treatment it seemed that a switch flipped in my body.  My body was stronger and I was beginning to feel healthy and energetic - the best I have felt in years! So I slowly lowered my dosage of herbals, and continued to rebuild my immune system with quality vitamins, supplements, probiotics and a healthy diet (processed food, dairy, sugar and gmo gluten free).  As my body got stronger, I slowly introduced physiotherapy and tiny amounts of cardio again.  I felt alive and rebuilding my body finally felt possible once more!  I was able to enjoy the summer with my children and husband for the first time in 5 years! I took my kids body-boarding in the lake, and tented with them twice over the summer. We did swimming lessons, sold our home and bought a property with a few acres of land.  It seemed that health and 'normal' living was possible again!

I bought a bike! And I can ride it again!!

News of my amazing improvement spread and people were calling and emailing looking for the secret to my recovery.  My brother came to stay with us for 7 weeks to receive the herbal treatment that I was on.  A friend from Winnipeg also came and we made trips back and forth to Toronto to supply them with all the necessary supplements and herbals to treat their Lyme also.  In the busyness of  building a new home, joining in the kids school programs and outings, special diets, treatment protocols, trips to the naturopath, helping others and taking care of my household and family unassisted, I pushed my body beyond it's limits.  I was surprised to notice that even when I overdid things, I recovered much faster than before, I no longer became fatigued and the pain which I felt in my muscles when I pushed them seemed to recover over a few days if I rested.  So I continued to push my body and mind, enjoying the freedom of living a more regular life and not considering the potential consequences. There was so much living to do - so much I had to catch up on, so much I had missed that I was keen to enjoy and join in again!

My brother Del and I 

By the fall of 2016 I had enjoyed four precious months of symptom-free living.  The natural doctor I was seeing had not found any traces of Lyme in my system for those months and as I was his first Lyme patient, he thought it safe to take me off my bacteria killing herbals.  I was only taking them once a day at this point.  Around the same time, I decided to take up swimming again.  My visitors had left and it was time to get into shape.  One week after stopping my herbals completely, my symptoms had returned - pain in my legs, exhaustion and my ribs consistently were popping out of place.  I saw the chiropractor 4 times that week, as quickly as he put my ribs in place they would go out again.  I remembered that the same thing happened before I initially began my Lyme treatment in 2011.  It apppeared the bacteria had returned - and indeed, the herbalist found it with his test. In addition to the returned Lyme, I have crashed my adrenals through years of chronic disease and stress.

So, I am back on heavy herbal and supportive supplement treatment again, and so disappointed to have my health taken away again. The cost is high for the treatment adding further stress.  We are currently spending/borrowing about $800 per week, for a total of $20,000 so far this year.  After a month in bed, I am up and about again and determined to do things differently this time.


Boost Immune System:
To boost my immune system I use PureTrim products.  They are pure and cold-pressed, easily absorbed by the body and tested by my natural doctor for quality.  I take:
2 TBSP 2X day of Daily Complete (multi-vitamin)
1 TBSP 2X day of Harmony (for energy),
1 cap Synergy Defence (pre-biotic, pro-biotic, digestive aide) before meals
1 cap 2X day of Female Balance to regulate my hormones
2-3 caps Experience (colon cleanse) with 2-4 cups of water before bed
1/2 Puretrim meal replacement shake - for afternoon snack
PureGardens cream (mixed with silver) for my skin

You can buy PureTrim products here and receive free shipping by signing up for autoship:

Kill bacteria:
Custom herbal bacteria killers.  I also like DoTerra oils
Fungus killers - the Lyme cloaks itself in fungus so fungus killers are important to expose the Lyme before killing it.

Colon Cleanse - Experience - PureTrim  (see above)
Cleanse blood
LIV52 - liver cleanse - 2 pills 1X day at 1pm
Kidney cleanse - I use Zi Yin Bu Shen Wan (herbal chinese) 8 pills 1X day
Infrared Sauna - every second day
Ozone therapy - local naturopath

I take Dr Ohirra (green box) probiotics in combination with Puretrim's Harmony

Digestive Aides:
Synergy Defense - PureTrim (see above)
Good digestive enzyme
Fermented foods are also amazing for pro and prebiotics and digestive enzymes

Adrenal Recover:
Stress supplement - 5-HTP NOW brand - 200mg 3X daily
Adrenal support - ADRENAsart - Lorna Vanderhaeghe brand - 2 caps breakfast and lunch
Stay below my daily energy limit - no pushing myself!
Balance hormones - Female Balance - PureTrim (see above)

Slowly increase physiotherapy exercises - very careful not to push my body

Say NO!!:
Taking care of my house and home is all I am able to do right now.  I will be getting help with the housework bi-weekly and am teaching my children to assist with household chores.

I really think the key to keeping the Lyme at bay is to become a hostile host for the bacteria.  That means maintaining a healthy immune system (80% based in the gut) and recovering my physical strength.  I will also remain on low dose herbals for the remainder of my life if need be to avoid another relapse.