Category Archives: mold toxicity

Renewed Hope for Lyme Disease and Biotoxin Illness

Hello to All,

I met with my third doctor in three years on my ongoing quest for health. I was impressed by his comprehensive approach to my illness. Here is the gist of it:

  • I have Lyme Disease (he is my third doc to confirm this*) AND
  • I also have Babesia (diagnosed by symptoms. Testing is $$$ and not always helpful) AND
  • Poor phase 1 and 2 detoxification ability resulting in inadequate glutathione production
  • Inability to detox mold resulting in biotoxin illness (revealed by genetic testing)
  • Methylation defects – MTFHR and others
  • Ongoing yeast problems
  • Increased intestinal permeability (aka Leaky Gut syndrome)
  • High levels of lead and mercury (though they came down significantly with IV chelation)
  • Reduced liver function
  • Reduced thyroid and adrenal function

Now, I already knew most of this, but it’s refreshing to have someone put it all together at one time. Now we’ll see if he has solutions for my problems. I can only hope that this is the complete picture of my health problems and there are no others in hiding. I’m testing my metal levels and spending the next 5 weeks detoxing before proceeding with Babesia treatment. Here are a few meds and supplements that I’ll be adding to my regimen:

  • Apex Methyl-SP formula, containing high doses of B vitamins, TMG and choline (given by my current naturopath)
  • Researched Nutritionals Liposomal Glutathione
  • Cholestyramine
  • Diflucan every other day
  • Nystatin twice per day

I’m also experimenting with my diet. I mostly avoid gluten, dairy, and sugar, and now I’m cutting down on the meat and omitting beef and pork entirely. I must admit, I feel a little starved.

I feel a renewed sense of hope after meeting with him. But as they say, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. I’ll track my symptoms and report back.

Best,

Laura

* Note: I have a Lyme Disease diagnosis by two naturopaths and an MD whose specialty is treating Lyme, ME/CFS and similar conditions. I’ve thought about seeing an infectious disease doc, but I doubt I’ll get any assistance from one. My diagnosis does not meet CDC criteria.

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#Lyme Disease, Toxins, Activated Charcoal, and Food Intolerance

Hello Again To All,

I’m back after a long absence due to an intense detox or possibly an adverse reaction to medication. I believe ketoconazole was the culprit, but I may never know. So I apologize if it takes me a while to post comments or return emails.

During the crisis, my doctor recommended stopping all meds and taking the usual detox remedies of Pekanas, coffee enemas, saunas, vitamin C, Meriva turmeric, and something new for me: activated charcoal. She says one has to be careful using charcoal on a regular basis because it not only adsorbs (attracts particles to itself) toxins, but also adsorbs beneficial vitamins and minerals.

I tried 2 caps of charcoal in the evening and didn’t notice any benefit. Then I increased to 2 caps twice per day. Still no obvious relief. Then I started taking it 30 minutes before eating lunch and dinner and discovered something wonderful: it prevents me from getting food related headaches!

Two prominent mold researchers/physicians, James Schaller, MD and Ritchie Shoemaker, MD recommend a resin binder (cholestyramine or Welchol) 30 minutes before meals to bind up toxins in the bile. So I decided to follow this protocol with the charcoal. Voila! It may not be a long term solution, but it has reduced my headaches greatly. My Candida and food intolerances have obviously returned, so I need to deal with them. But the charcoal is saving me a lot of pain and allowing me to eat solid, nutritious food for the time being.

Dr. Schaller has a comparison of the effectiveness of common toxin binders on mold toxins on his website: http://www.usmoldphysician.com/articles/comparingmoldtoxinbinders.html

Comparing the Mold Toxin Binders

  • Cholestyramine showed the best adsorption capacity. It was quite effective at 85% absorption.
  • Activated Carbon had the second best mold toxin absorption at 62%.
  • Bentonite clay adsorbed minimally. Even when the amount of toxin load in the water was reduced to a low load of only 13 microg/ml, the Bentonite clay still only bound 12% of the toxin.
  • Celite was not effective even at the lowest tested FB1 concentration of 3.2 microg/ml.

So for those of us who require slower detox, charcoal is a good option. And it’s cheap, too! I was advised to take extra water and fiber to avoid constipation. I also need to take extra minerals, zinc, magnesium, potassium, and trace minerals to avoid depletion.

My next steps are to:
1) Have a few NAET/BioSET treatments to calm the food sensitivities,
2) Improve gut health and CAREFULLY kill off more fungus and bacteria,
3) Do genetic testing to determine SNP’s and methylation defects so I can detox and metabolize better,
4) Correct probable hormonal imbalances related to my age: the dreaded 45 and onset of what is most likely peri-menopause. (I’ve been having heart palpitations, nighttime sweats, and wicked insomnia. Yup, I think it has begun).
5) Support adrenals. I’m trying cordyceps, a Chinese mushroom herbal remedy.

More to come soon.

– Laura

#Lyme Disease and Biotoxin Removal, Part Two

Hello to All,

After checking with my doctor, I have been following Richard Loyd’s detox protocol for about a month now. His protocol consists of absorbing bile toxins from the body with Cholestepure, doing foot detox with ionic foot baths and foot patches, and removing mold toxins from my home with a diffuser and detox oil.  See Dr. Loyd’s paper on mold detox at http://www.royalrife.com/mold_toxins.pdf.

So here is my report: My pain level is significantly reduced. I have little body pain and fewer, milder headaches. I currently have no food reactions. I am able to eat a wide variety of foods with no headaches. In fact, I’ve been eating too much and I’ve gained more weight than I needed. In addition, I have not observed side effects from treatment so far.

I have known for some time that when I’m flared up, all my symptoms flare, not just pain. When pain goes down, so do my other symptoms. I used to think these symptoms just co-existed. I now understand that reducing inflammation causes a reduction in my other symptoms of depression, anxiety, fatigue, and insomnia.

I will certainly not say that Loyd’s protocol is responsible for the reduction of symptoms. It could be a coincidence. If my doctor approves, I will continue with this toxin reduction protocol and restart anti-microbial treatment to see what happens. I’ve had temporary reprieves before. We’ll see how long this one lasts.

I know that this is a long road, and there are more challenges to come. But I’m encouraged by this reprieve and very pleased to be feeling better!

Good luck to all,

Laura

#Lyme Disease and Biotoxin Removal Protocols

So after a tough month of detox symptoms following a new anti-microbial regimen, I decided to research an improved detox protocol for myself. I am cleaning up my diet (again) and taking time off from killing the infections until I can reduce my existing toxic load and improve my body’s detox system.

My understanding of this illness has deepened considerably in recent months. Chronic Lyme Disease is not a stand-alone condition. It is a complex interaction of impaired physiology, biotoxin load, and immune dysregulation. The infection is only a part of the problem. Borrelia and other pathogenic microbes are opportunistic and stubborn infections that will wreak havoc in the already impaired body.

My research has led me to the work of two researchers who advocate removal of mold toxins from the body and the immediate environment as the path to regaining one’s health: Ritchie Shoemaker, MD, a family practice physician, author, and researcher, and Richard Loyd, PhD, a researcher and nutritionist. According to these pioneers in the field of biotoxin related illness, treating mold and removing existing toxins from the body is vital for a full recovery from Lyme disease.

Both of their protocols use an intestinal toxin binder, such as cholestyramine or Cholestepure. They both work by binding toxins in the intestines that have been released from the gallbladder. Toxins are stored in fat cells. They are processed through the liver then on to the gallbladder until a fatty meal causes the gallbladder to release bile and the toxins into the gut. Without cholestyramine or other toxin-binding agents, they can re-circulate back into the blood stream. This is a self-perpetuating cycle. Even if you kill off pathogenic microbes in the body, their toxins continue to circulate in people with ineffective detox pathways. The gist of treatment is threefold: Avoid, Prepare, and Remove.

Note: Cholestyramine is a prescription bile acid sequestrate intended for use in lowering cholesterol. It has also has been found clinically to be effective in relieving the symptoms of toxic mold syndrome. It works by binding to the mold toxins in the gut and removing them from the body. Cholestyramine has been used for decades in mainstream medicine to lower cholesterol. It is also used by the U.S. military to remove neurotoxins after exposure in combat. It has an excellent safety profile because it is not absorbed into the blood stream. The most common side effects are constipation, heartburn, and nausea. Dr. Loyd suggests a product called Cholestepure as a natural, gentler alternative.

CAUTION: Lyme patients, or people with any severe biotoxin illness  may not be able to tolerate any cholestyramine at all. Starting a toxin binding protocol such as this can lead to intense detox (Herx) reactions. Talk to your doctor. And prep with a good anti-inflammatory protocol BEFORE commencing a protocol like this.

Step One: Avoid further exposure to mold toxins

Remove yourself from toxic environments, or remove the mold from your environment. See Dr. Loyd’s website and paper on mold http://www.royalrife.com/mold_toxins.pdf for mold removal strategies, including diffusing mold killing essential oils with a diffuser into your car, garage, and basement. Read Dr. Shoemaker’s books: Mold Warriors and Surviving Mold for detailed information.

Step Two: Prepare your system for the detox storm to follow

Cholestyramine can cause unbearable detox symptoms (inflammation!) in chronically ill patients. Once you start processing out the toxins, more are released from their safe hiding places. Though a number of physicians (including Dr. Klinghardt) once prescribed a short course of a drug called Actos to mitigate detox symptoms, this drug is now linked with increased risk of bladder cancer. This drug can also be problematic for those with insulin problems and low leptin levels.

See http://www.survivingmold.com/docs/biotoxinpathwayritchieshoemakermd.pdf for helpful diagrams of the body’s chemistry to better understand the inflammatory cycle and detox pathways.

Dr. Shoemaker now advocates preparing the body with very high doses of fish oil as a natural anti-inflammatory. The targeted dose of fatty acids is 2.4g EPA and 1.8g DHA daily for 8 days prior to commencing binding therapy. This can be 5 or more capsules of high potency fish oil!

Dr. Loyd suggests one of the following products: UltraInflamX, Kaprex, KaprexAI, BioticsKappArrest. They inhibit NF-kappaB, a messenger that causes the release of inflammatory cytokines. They are safe, natural alternatives to Actos.

In addition to fish oil, my doctor has me on a concentrated, highly bio-available form of turmeric called Meriva.

To my surprise, Dr. Loyd (and also noted LLMD, Dr. Steven Harris) also suggests foot detox to draw out toxins. He suggests electronic foot detox baths and foot detox patches. See http://www.royalrife.com/mold_toxins.pdf. Honestly, I thought foot detox was pure B.S. until I read his website. Scott Forsgren from www.betterhealthguy.com has also used the Japanese-made patches with success. Go to his website for brand suggestions, since there are likely many ineffective ones out there. This is supposedly a gentle toxin removal treatment without side effects. It may be helpful to undertake this before commencing with toxin binding.

Part Three: Bind the Toxins

Mix one packet of cholestyramine in water four times daily between meals, preferably 30 minutes before a meal.

  • As an alternate, Welchol is a gentler pharmaceutical binding agent that can be used.
  • As a natural alternate use 1 – 3 capsules of Cholestepure, three times per day in between meals.

Shoemaker requires a low sugar, low amylase (starch) diet to aid in the process and reduce detox reactions. Duration of treatment is anywhere from two weeks to several months, depending on the toxic load.

In Conclusion

Please be careful when taking any new medications/supplements or implementing a detox protocol. It’s tempting for desperate, chronically ill people to play doctor on themselves. But detoxing can have serious side effects, including runaway inflammation, which is not only painful, but is dangerous. Get professional help. Do your research. And go slowly and carefully.

– Laura