When you ask the average person about Lyme disease most people will say:
- It’s spread by ticks
- It’s relatively rare
- It causes flu-like symptoms including fever, chills, headache, stiff neck, achiness and fatigue
- It’s treated with antibiotics
Well, each of those is only partially true…and not having all the facts on Lyme disease can put you at a much greater risk.
Here’s the complete story on Lyme disease, and how you can fight or prevent it.
Lyme disease—the emergence of a mystery
Lyme disease originated around 1975 and was named after the town of Lyme, Connecticut, where it was first identified.
Within two years, the black-legged tick (also known as the deer tick) was linked to the infection.
Then in 1982, scientists discovered the bacterium responsible for the infection--Borrelia burgdorferi—which is related to the bacterium that causes syphilis.
The Lyme bacterium has a knack for hiding and survival. It can live inside your cells and encase itself in a “cyst.” That’s why treatment can be so difficult and it can recur after antibiotics.
It’s also tricky to diagnose. There are many species of the Lyme bacterium, but only a handful of strains are detectable with lab tests.
It starts with a tick bite—or maybe not
The typical Lyme infection starts when a tick that’s carrying the bacterium jumps off a deer, bird or other animal and gets on you.
Then it immediately starts numbing your skin so you can’t feel it. It prefers dark, secluded areas such as your armpits, behind your ear or your scalp.
But ticks aren’t the only guilty parties. Lyme can also be spread by other insects including mosquitoes, spiders, fleas, and mites.
After being bitten, one of the first signs of Lyme is a bulls-eye-like rash on your skin, but if a tick didn’t do the biting (and you were instead bitten by another Lyme-carrying insect), the rash may be shaped differently.
A myriad of symptoms
The typical signs of Lyme disease are flu-like symptoms, but that’s not always the case.
Because Lyme can partner up with other co-infections, and the “team” can cause a myriad of symptoms and mimic other disorders such as:
- Multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Parkinson’s disease
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease)
- Alzheimer's disease
- Vision and hearing problems
- Heart problems
- Facial palsy
It’s not as rare as you think
Although many people think Lyme disease is rather rare, that’s not true.
According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), 300,000 new cases of Lyme disease are diagnosed in the US each year.
Blood tests don’t always pick up cases of Lyme and here’s why: The Lyme bacterium can infect your white blood cells, and when this happens, they don't respond by producing antibodies like they should. Since the blood tests measure white blood cell antibody production, you can get a false negative.
Once your white blood cells recover and begin to make antibodies, then they’ll show up on a blood test—but by then you can have full-blown Lyme disease.
Fighting Lyme disease—prevention first
As is the case for most illnesses, prevention is the key.
If you spend time outdoors, check for ticks daily on yourself, children and pets.
Bathe or shower within two hours after coming in from the outdoors if possible.
If you’ve been in a tick-infested area, do a full body check and examine your clothing for ticks.
Tossing your clothes in a dryer on high heat for an hour will kill any you may have missed.
And see a doctor immediately if you develop a “bull’s-eye” rash.
Help your body along if you’ve got it
If you’ve already contracted Lyme disease, here are three ways you can help your body fight the challenges of the condition, encourage strong immune system functioning, and help counteract the effects of the strong antibiotics that are usually prescribed.
1- Engage the power of the right diet
Nourishing your body with a healthy diet is number one.
Having a nutritious diet and encouraging sound digestion helps create a healthier gut environment.
Since your gut is where most of your immune system resides, by promoting gut health, you are also supporting strong immune function!
The nutrients in a healthy diet play a big part too.
Antioxidant vitamins and minerals can help fight the damage caused by infections and viruses, and many of the phytochemicals found in fruits and vegetables have been shown to have immune-enhancing properties.
The good news is, having a healthy diet is not only easy, but it tastes great too—when you follow the Great Taste No Pain health system.
Great Taste No Pain will show you how to create nutritious meals that are positively delicious and easier for your system to digest.
When you have sound digestion, you can better eliminate wastes and dangerous bacteria, and absorb immune-enhancing nutrients from your foods.
Note that if you are gluten-sensitive, have Celiac disease or just want to avoid gluten, then Great Taste No Gluten is for you instead.
2- Immune support
Since most of your immune system lies in your beneficial gut bacteria, it's essential to make sure you have a strong population of these good guys.
In addition to a nutritious diet, supplementation with probiotics can help you achieve this important, health-enhancing goal.
Super Shield's 13 strains of friendly bacteria are up to the task, ready to line your intestinal walls, help keep your digestion smooth and be on the lookout for "suspicious invaders." Plus Super Shield can help your body bounce back from “antibiotic destruction” of your helpful gut bacteria.
In addition, vitamin D is critical to your immune system, and helps to prevent excessive, inflammatory immune responses.
And for a top-quality vitamin D supplement, nothing beats Dr. Salerno’s Vitamin D-K Factor.
You’ll get 5,000 IUs of immune-loving, bone-supporting vitamin D with the added benefit of vitamin K to support bone and heart health!
3- Additional measures
Here are other ways you can fight Lyme disease:
- Foods such as garlic, leeks, onions, radishes and cabbage have anti-infectious properties.
- Helpful spices include thyme, fennel, clove, cayenne pepper, turmeric and ginger.
- Mushrooms including cordycep, reishi and maitake have been shown to activate immune response.
- CoQ10 can protected your brain and nervous system from degradation and improve cellular