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inflammation

Diet and inflammation

Indianspices
What is diet’s role in healing Lyme?

The body’s response to injury is often inflammation. This is beneficial in case of a cut or scratch.

But when the body’s immune system is chronically switched-on due to a Lyme bacterial infection, the resulting inflammation can wreck havoc.

What you can do to fight inflammation

Stress and medication contribute to inflammation, but so does a diet of refined carbohydrates and sugary foods, as well as dairy, red meat, and cereals.

Be proactive in your own healing

Eat a mediterranean-style diet free of foods that are known inflammation triggers. Inflammation may not sound serious -- but according to medical experts it is no joke, which is why it is called the silent killer.

Healing from chronic Lyme is not easy for many of us. Why gamble with your health by consuming foods that may cause your body even more harm?

Increase your healing odds by eating anti-inflammatory foods such as oily fishes (salmon, sardines, and mackerel), walnuts, green leafy vegetables, and many spices and herbs.

Bright yellow turmeric with black pepper reduces inflammation hiding in the body, and contains anti-aging properties. It is included in the treatment of many debilitating diseases such as diabetes, Alzheimers and arthritis, as well as Lyme.

Look around in the produce section. Let your senses guide you. Choose organic, healthy, brightly colored fruits and vegetables which are high in anti-oxidants. Our diets should include about two and half cups of vegetables and fruits every day.

Exercise — not just on the days you feel like it.

The mind is not always our friend. Sometimes it is a bully, interfering with the needs of the body by arguing that it’s too tired or too sick to move around even just a little.

I speak from experience!

Don’t let your mind work against your body’s best interests. Make an effort to override it. Form new habits. This takes courage, so don’t be surprised if you think this is a difficult task. It is. But aren’t things that are worthwhile usually kinda hard?

Here’s a motivating factoid to encourage you to exercise even just a little:

Exercise oxygenates the blood and kills spirochetes, which cannot survive in a high-oxygen environment. Be a spirochete slayer. Your mind will even be impressed.

No one in this world is more invested in your healing than yourself. Not your mom, your doctor, your spouse or even your dog. Only YOU can change your habits if needed.

A tasty, organic mainly-veggie diet and regular exercise are part of my healthy healing journey. I exercise every day now, but it took years to formulate working-out as a habit. I realize this means my mind is particularly stubborn. At least now its habit is a healthy one that it won’t let me give up!


Manuka honey and shea butter

Honey is healing, and for centuries societies around the globe have applied it to cure infection caused by wounds and other skin injuries.

Skin problems associated with Lyme disease can include severe rashes and intense itching. Honey can be used topically to help reduce inflammation and soothe itchiness.

Manuka honey is a special, potent healing balm. Bees collect it from the Tea Tree bush, widely praised for its cleansing and germ-killing abilities.

Manuka honey’s healing properties are so dependable and effective that it is used by medical personnel in Emergency Rooms for patients with critical burns and gunshot wounds.

It is sticky, like all honeys. So it should be covered once applied, but mixed with shea butter Manuka can soothe and heal irritated skin.

For help with a case of seasonally recurring eczema, I discovered that spreading on a blend of Manuka honey and shea butter before bedtime helps reduce inflammation and soften rough skin.

If you try it yourself, remember to cover with a non-stick bandage so it stays on your skin instead of ending up on the sheets!

A remedy for inflammation — and a yummy late-night drink

In my house, Manuka is also our favorite go-to for soothing scratchy throats due to colds or allergies. On a chilly night I love curling up with our two little doggies, and a good book, and sipping on a hot steamy mug of Lemon-Manuka.

Into a cup of hot water, stir in one teaspoon honey and a squeeze of lemon. Add a dash of cayenne pepper for a cup of cozy warmth.

Avoid eating sugar if you have active Lyme symptoms. You do not need to add to your body’s troubles by consuming this non-food food.

The point is to reduce inflammation, and sugar can cause insulin levels to rise, which results in plummeting blood glucose and encourages silent or low-grade inflammation. Stevia is a good sugar substitute and doesn’t react in the body like sugar.

Okay, so your turn! What is your favorite anti-inflammatory remedy?
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Magnesium a must for Lyme patients



Magnesium for reducing inflammation

If you have Lyme disease, you have silent inflammation.

It is highly likely that you are also deficient in magnesium, because the Lyme bacteria, Borrelia, unlike other bacteria that require iron to survive, has evolved to use magnesium to complete its own life cycle.

The Lyme bacteria steals magnesium from our cells to survive.

Another factor contributing to the problem, for Americans at least, is that our farming topsoil has been depleted in magnesium which is not replaced. So our foods tend to be deficient in magnesium, which is problematic.

Magnesium supplements have been clinically proven to reduce pain and inflammation from fibromyalgia and other autoimmune diseases. As Lyme is an inflammatory disease, it makes sense to pay attention to something as simple as adding in a vital mineral.

Increasing magnesium levels through diet or supplements may be even more crucial for people with Lyme, because not only does the Lyme bacteria rob us of magnesium, so does stress—both physical and psychological or emotional—as well as the use of antibiotics.

If you have Lyme, you are likely familiar with experiencing stress on every level. One of the main complaints addressed by magnesium is anxiety, and reducing mental stress is a critical first step in healing.


Magnesium deficiency same as Lyme symptoms

Many of the symptoms of magnesium deficiency are the same ones associated with Lyme disease, such as irregular heartbeat, anxiety, insomnia, restlessness, muscle cramps and spasms, and joint health.

Other problems stemming from a lack of magnesium are arthritis, heart disease, hardening of the arteries, and calcification.

Magnesium deficiency shares another aspect with Lyme disease.

Tests are highly unreliable. Here’s why. This vital mineral is located throughout the body and functions in every cell, including those in our brain. Only about 1% of magnesium is in our blood. Yet the test for magnesium deficiency is a blood serum test.


Magnesium can alter the course of health — and disease

Magnesium research over the past 40 years tells us that this essential mineral is far more vital to our health—physically and psychologically—than was previously assumed.

Fibromyalgia patients treated with magnesium malate have been clinically demonstrated to experience a reduction in pain.

According to a recent study published the journal BMC Bioinformatics, magnesium is essential to altering the course of health and disease.


Major body functions requiring magnesium

Our bodies use magnesium to perform thousands of biochemical functions that contribute to good health—at the top of the list is a good night’s sleep and regulation of the heartbeat.

Nerve function, blood sugar control, blood pressure regulation, energy metabolism, protein synthesis, and production of the antioxidant glutathione are just a handful of the major functions that require magnesium.

It is easy to get more magnesium in your diet by eating magnesium-rich foods and also by taking a magnesium supplement. Magnesium baths also increase levels through the skin. Ask your doctor about the best way for you.


Calcium and magnesium are both necessary

Calcium and magnesium work together like two sides of the same coin. Yet modern medicine has fixated on the role and importance of calcium, even though getting too much calcium is problematic.

In addition to fibromyalgia patients, increased magnesium has shown benefits to those suffering with atrial fibrillation, Diabetes type 2, cardiovascular disease, premenstrual syndrome, and migraines.

Low magnesium levels are also associated with cardiovascular aging, which contributes to premature aging.

Magnesium is an essential part of the delicate balance of our health. Taking a magnesium supplement or eating foods rich in magnesium helps create the right amount of calcium in the body. Yet, calcium supplements taken without magnesium can actually deplete magnesium in the body.


What depletes magnesium?

Pharmaceutical drugs, antibiotics, stress, whether psychological or physical, depletes magnesium in the body.

Same with caffeine, so be aware that if you have a habit of drinking coffee or tea in the morning, one of the reasons behind your afternoon crash is that the caffeine has depleted your necessary magnesium levels. Drinking yet another cup of coffee is probably not the best way to wake up.

Nor is reaching for a candy bar or anything with sugar. Fizzy sodas and pop drinks contain phosphates which bind with magnesium and flush it out through the kidneys.

“Anti-nutrients” such as sugary drinks, candy bars, cookies, cakes, and pastries tank the level of magnesium in the body as well.

Having a Vitamin D deficiency contributes to a loss of magnesium.

Alcoholic drinks, if taken seven times or more per week, also flush magnesium out through the kidneys.

Exercise and sweating depletes magnesium. Magnesium is controlled by the kidneys and excreted daily.

How do you know if you’ve got too much? Your body will naturally let you know. Too much magnesium can cause diarrhea as your body rids itself of the excess mineral.


Foods rich in magnesium

You can take a supplement, but the easiest fix is to start eating foods that contain magnesium to see if you feel an increase in energy. Look for vegetables high in chlorophyl, such as dark leafy greens—chard and spinach contain magnesium.

So do pumpkin seeds, yogurt, kefir, beans and other legumes such as black-eyed peas. Artichoke, almonds, avocado, goat cheese, figs, dark chocolate, and banana are some other foods that contain this miracle-worker mineral.



Further References:
http://www.newsmax.com/fastfeatures/magnesium-deficiency-lyme-disease/2016/07/11/id/738173/

http://www.everydayhealth.com/pictures/foods-high-in-magnesium/#05

https://www.amazon.com/Magnesium-Miracle-Revised-Updated/product-reviews/034549458X/ref=cm_cr_dp_synop?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=0&sortBy=recent#R1L09DW10O2WDF
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Sugar cravings and nightsweats: What is your gut trying to tell you?


Causes of autoimmune disease.
Dr. Peter Muran is like the Sherlock Holmes of Lyme literate doctors.

A physician who specializes in natural, alternative, and complementary medicine, with a background in engineering and chemistry, he says disease doesn't just happen.

He explains that preceding every disease, including chronic Lyme, there is a pathway, a chronological timeline that led to the condition.

Take, for example, the classic killer heart attack.

“Someone doesn't simply have a heart attack and die,” says Dr. Muran, who, along with his wife, Dr. Sandy Muran, practices Functional Medicine at Longevity Healthcare in San Luis Obispo, California.

There are factors that lead up to the cause of death, he explains. If you take an engineering approach and look for the clues, you can discover a telling storyline.

The heart attack does not come out of the blue. First, an occurrence of some sort leads to the clogging of the arteries, and then, this disease of the arteries develops until they get blockage, and then finally, the result is a heart attack.


Nudge it with a sledgehammer?
As he sees it, the doctors' job is not to come up with a diagnosis so that a label can be slapped on the illness, and a code to treat it can be decided upon.

Instead, his goal is to investigate the chronology leading up to the illness, to locate just where along the line the imbalance occurred. Then, he says, the doctor's job is essentially to get out of the way and allow the body to heal itself.

But in their effort to heal the patient, doctors can make errors in judgement.

For example, it only takes a nudge, a very mild or slight tuneup of the hormonal system for tremendous results, says Dr. Muran.

“When Prednisone is given to manage a slight cortisol deficiency in the hormonal system, it's like using a sledgehammer when all you needed was a tackhammer.”

What does this mean for us patients? It means that we can have some degree of control in changing our particular situation.

While there is no way to change the fact that we got Lyme to begin with, chronic Lyme can be examined objectively, looked at and analyzed the way one would a story—or a crime.

And a good place to start looking for clues is in our diet. Conventional doctors are not schooled in nutrition, so we'll get little help from them.


SAD but true
Most Americans, finds Dr. Muran, live to eat, intead of eating to live. The SAD (Standard American Diet) causes stress and inflammation and creates imbalances in the immune system. Under these conditions, diseases which we could normally keep in check are instead allowed to flourish.

Dr. Muran finds that patients dealing with chronic disease often do have problems in their GI tract.

Night sweats, sugar cravings, and other disturbances are often a result of the inflammation and imbalance in the gut caused by an unhealthy diet.

He points out that we are not subjected to anything separate from the earth, or sterile. “Our GI tract has 100 billion cells living in it,” he says, which is ten times the number of cells that make up our body.

It doesn't take an engineer, or even a Watson, to recognize that our bodies have an ongoing and continuous relationship with the earth, meaning the flora and fauna that live inside us, and that actually play a key role in our wellbeing.

Our bodies are miraculous and resilient. Given half a chance to survive, we may even begin to thrive. Making positive shifts in our lifestyle and diet can help us manage chronic Lyme.


Members, for further information about Dr. Muran's approach to managing chronic Lyme Disease, please listen to our 4-part interview with him in our Lyme Experts audio interviews series in the membership portal.


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Start where you are. Fight chronic inflammation.

Lyme disease is a thief. Chronic lyme disease symptoms can go on affecting a person’s life for many years. Given the complexity of receiving a correct diagnosis, a person with an undetected, underlying Lyme infection may instead be labeled with RA, fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, MS, ALS, or almost anything from a truckload of other conditions.

Meantime, life goes on. Friends and siblings get jobs, travel, go to grad school, fall in love. They get married, have babies, and not in any particular order. But for the person with Lyme those fundamental pathways, common fruits of life we for granted, may simply not be an option. Lyme has stolen years.

But enough of spilled tears, right? The wisest thing anyone can do is to start where you are. If you’ve had it with chronic lyme disease symptoms, take heart. Many others have been in your shoes. And they’ve gotten through it. Regardless of the time and opportunities missed because of Lyme, there are many people living happy, loving, productive lives again.

Exactly how the stealthy
Lyme bacterial complex works is still under scrutiny. Scientists and doctors, some who are also personally infected with Lyme disease, such as Dr. Eva Sapi and  veterinarian, Lyme and immunology expert Dr. Scott Taylor, toil to understand and find a cure for Lyme. One thing we know for certain is that Lyme is an inflammatory disease, and chronic inflammation is the root cause of many life threatening conditions, including Lyme.

Cortico-steroids are commonly given to Lyme patients by doctors without any knowledge or clinical experience in
diagnosing chronic Lyme disease symptoms. The faulty logic goes something like this: the patient is experiencing distress, inflammation is causing the distress, steroids (usually Prednisone) will reduce the inflammation and thus reduce the patient’s distress. Not! Predinose will supress the patient’s immune system, causing it to tolerate the Borrelia bacteria instead of attacking and killing it. The Lyme infection is almost guaranteed to get worse, not better.

What can be done about chronic inflammation? Are there safe prescription drugs available, and does your LLMD know about them? What about natural alternatives? Aside from fish oil, are there other products we can take to reduce this silent killer? Does physical exercise really help people dealing with chronic inflammation? Or can it hurt? In my next post, we’ll delve into the various ways to treat chronic inflammation.


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Add spice, reduce inflammation

Do you have an appropriate Lyme disease diet?

Low-grade or chronic inflammation accompanies a bacterial infection such as Lyme disease. Chronic fatigue and lethargy are produced when the body is busy fighting infection. Reducing inflammation is key in regaining vitality and healing. It's smart to include foods in your diet to help achieve those goals.

Help your body reduce damaging inflammation with the following:

* Eliminate refined sugar and processed foods
* Reduce stress in your daily life
* Get enough early morning sunshine


Add some spice to your life -- specifically, turmeric and ginger -- to help reduce inflammation. They are both part of the same family of plants.

Turmeric is used to lend mustard its yellow color. It is used frequently, though sparingly, in Indian food. The active substance, curcumin, is a powerful, yellow dye that will stain countertops and plastic food containers. It's also a well-known anti-inflammatory. Turmeric can be taken in capsule form or you can sprinkle it onto your food. I like it on my eggs for breakfast, or added to the stir-fry veggies we often cook for dinner. A general rule of thumb is to use about a teaspoonful or less in cooking. More than that will make your food taste bitter.

Ginger root is the underground stem of the ginger plant. The powder and the grated root are often used in cooking and baking. Ginger has medicinal qualities, and due to its anti-inflammatory element has long been used to aid in arthritis and ulcerative colitis. Among other uses, ginger is antibacterial, and effective as a digestive aid.

Nearly all of the people we've interviewed for our Lyme success stories have said that modifying their diet has improved their health significantly.

* What changes to your lifestyle and diet are helping you heal from Lyme?

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