The “6R” Strategy for Fighting Lyme Disease
Many many people suffer from Lyme disease and do not know. The CDC reports up to 300,000 new cases of Lyme disease are reported each year. This is estimated to be about at 10% increase occurring yearly. Lyme disease is a tick-borne infectious disease most common to America. The infection that ticks can give through their bite is called borreliosis and can move through the body infecting different areas at different times. It can hide and be difficult to detect which is one reason Lyme disease often goes diagnosed. Even for functional medicine practitioners it is difficult to treat. Lyme disease can hide from the immune system and can also suppress the immune system making it hard to diagnose leaving you susceptible to chronic infections, mold toxicity, and parasites. Symptoms of Lyme disease mimic other things and can include:
- Muscle aches
- Flu-like symptoms
- Joint pain
- Gut issues
- Compromised immunity
The standard testing for diagnosing Lyme disease is the Western blot and ELISA test. This method of testing can miss early-stages of Lyme disease up to 60% of the time. If you suspect you may have Lyme disease, consider this Lyme Disease Questionnaire and work with a functional medicine practitioner to do the right diagnostic testing. You need an experienced practitioner to guide you in treatment, but there are lifestyle changes you can make starting today that can help support your body through this process.
If you suspect you may have Lyme disease or have been diagnosed but are not getting better, start implementing these “6 R” Strategies for Fighting Lyme Disease, and get scheduled with a functional medicine practitioner who truly understands how to treat Lyme disease.
- Real Foods- the body needs as much support as it can get when fighting a systemic disease like Lyme. Avoid processed foods and sugar as much as possible while incorporating healthy fats (olive oil, avocado, coconut oil and grass-fed butter) and vegetables into the diet.
- Repopulate– good gut bacteria will be compromised with Lyme disease. Not only are probiotic foods like sauerkraut and kimchi beneficial for repopulating the good gut bacteria. Other supportive supplements to replenish nutrient deficiencies are necessary, and need to be implemented with the help of a skilled practitioner.
- Remove- eating foods your body is reacting to only increases inflammation and adds to the stress the body is under. Consider food sensitivity testing to know which foods to remove.
- Rest- although chronic fatigue often occurs with Lyme disease, being fatigued does not necessarily mean you are getting the quantity and quality of sleep you need. The body relies on quality sleep time to restore, reset, and even reprogram at the cellular level.
- Restore– Stress is one of the most underrated sources of chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation is one of the most underrated culprits of poor immune function. Finding ways to manage stress, play, and be in nature are important parts of the healing process.
- Reduce- When immunity is low and toxins are high, the body must work overtime to get rid of toxins, and in the case of Lyme disease, it rarely has the capacity to do all the extra work. Cleaning up your skin care, body care, cleaning, and home items are a big step in the right direction when healing from a complicated and often chronic infection like Lyme disease.