Autoimmune Revolution Summit 2017
These are my notes from this interview during the summit. For more information on this subject please visit the speakers web page linked below.
Dr. Jay Davidson
web page drjaydavidson.com
Lyme Disease: Infections and Autoimmune Diseases
After battling Lyme Disease since the age of seven my wife is now the healthiest she has ever been, there is still work to, layers to keep pealing back but going from near death to now is a huge blessing. Anytime your looking at Lyme there is so many different factors, so this isn’t like the cookie cutter each case has to be analyzed. Specifically for my wife 2012 was when everything hit the fan, when our daughter was born, and it was like becoming a single Dad because she was so sick. We knew heavy metals was an issue for my wife back in 2007, she had some reactions trying to detox it. 2008 going from different practitioner to practitioner looking for the right coach, the right guidance. In 2007 had some reactions to DMSA, 2008 had some reactions to DMPS and we both showed up high in lead and mercury levels. There was such a huge autoimmune component to it and we knew fixing the gut was huge.
When you look at Lyme and infections you see bugs, the tick bite, and you get the bulls-eye rash which only shows up in about 30% of cases. If you treat that right away and the standard practice is Doxycycline, I like more homeopathic but that’s my preference. There is a time for antibiotics with acute Lyme, if you know it’s acute Lyme, or had it before and re-flared. Let’s say nothing was dealt with in eight weeks after getting Lyme, and Lyme can be sexually transmitted, it can be passed on from the Mom to the baby in the womb. There is a lot of different pathways. Let’s say that Lyme isn’t dealt with and it goes in it’s chronic stage, the chronic stage is when Lyme gets tough, it had different morphologies. It can be the spirochete form, the cyst form, which is basically like a sphere. So that within 20 minutes of taking antibiotics the spirochete’s are in a cyst form, which is a thousand times stronger against antibiotics than if it’s in a spirochete form. What makes Lyme tricky is it can literally go inside of our cells, intracellularly, it can basically be a stealth pathogen. This is where the autoimmune component comes in, chronic Lyme, the longer it goes the farther and deeper it goes into the autoimmune component. The body see’s it’s own cells, but it knows something is not right, and it goes after it thinking it’s maybe a pathogen inside and an autoimmune component. I have always found fixing the gut has been a big part of that.
With my wife’s Lyme, she became allergic to everything after pregnancy and the only thing she could drink was bone broth. For 15 days straight, otherwise with anything else her throat would swell up. From there we established some gut health using the bone broth to calm the autoimmune reaction down. Really going after the pathogen itself, and frequency technology was a big piece of that. The biggest turning point was heavy metals and getting them out.
As a clinician the patients that come to me usually have had a lot of tests run, so I am looking at previous tests and see if there are any additional tests to run. Even though testing has advanced a lot there is a new test not widely known from Pharmasan Labs and it’s called iSpot. It’s based off how they identify TB it’s super accurate, about 94% specific, 84% sensitive, from a laboratory standpoint great. It also gives you a number, just to give you a range over 25 is positive, under 17 is negative, and then in the middle equivocal. Anything over 60 your getting into the acute phase, 25-60 would be chronic, but when it comes down to it Lyme Disease is a clinical diagnosis. The test is just a tool, I think history and examinations is an important piece. Lyme is now found everywhere, the only place they say it’s not is Antarctica.
The tricky part deals with co-infections, and Lyme can have so many pieces to it. I find a lot of flare ups happen after having a child which I think for the first half of the pregnancy the immune system is Th1 dominant. The second half they’re Th2 dominant, after that they switch back to Th1. I almost think with the pregnancy and the flip-flopping of the immune system seems to trigger things, and the trauma of the labor and infections. The reason I like the iSpot test is not the positive/negative, and nothing is 100% it’s just a tool. But what I found is the number can dictate if Lyme is a big piece of it or is it part of the puzzle.
My clinical evaluation, when I look at somebody whose struggling with Lyme, is there is always something that made the body be susceptible to it. Our body is brilliantly designed and with a strong immune system if we get a bug the body should be able to take care of it. But, I look at he fact that our standard American diet with a modern day toxic exposure, our high level of mental and emotional stress, our lack of recharging, all these pieces fit into this puzzle. It makes our bodies more susceptible so when you do get a bug, pathogen or infection our bodies are less able to handle it. Any time that cascade starts it’s almost like it opens up the floodgates and this Lyme comes along, which in the United States there’s over a hundred different strains. Under these conditions it’s able to live and thrive and allows the body to get more pathogens. There are common co-infections with Lyme, once they get in and can multiply and thrive then it only gets worse, and obviously important to stop that as fast as you can. It’s a predisposition like in a case of having heavy metal toxicity. It’s a compromised immune system that allows Lyme to get a foothold and out of control and create additional infections, additional problems.
The two most found heavy metals with Lyme are mercury and lead. These are now a modern epidemic for everyone and not being properly dealt with, aluminum is also a large problem. Mercury and Lyme both love the brain, I think there is a synergistic thing that happens between them. Lead loves bone, it’s stored in the bone, anytime there is hormonal shifts in the body, whether it’s puberty, or during labor in pregnancy. When the baby is requiring minerals and the Mom loses minerals out of the bone to supply the baby, lead is stored in the bone and will be released. Also menopause and for guys andropause, those hormonal shifts change bone density and lead can get stirred up and surface at that time. They call lead the generational curse because a Mom will pass it on to a child for four generations. So we are still getting the effect of the lead from the 1940s on from lead paint and leaded gas. We still have some sources today, a recent report showed some balsamic vinegars showed lead in them, a lot of jewelry, faux leather, toys from China, so it’s still there.
When tested you could have one or multiple metals and there are others, arsenic, cadmium, bismuth from pepto-bismol. Mercury from a symptomatic standpoint loves the brain, and effects the hypothalamus and pituitary. Those pieces are the master hormone system, the top of the chain. The hypothalamus communicates with the pituitary, and the pituitary communicates with the rest of the hormone glands like the adrenals and thyroid, and whether you’re male or female the reproductive organs. Anytime someone has adrenal issues, thyroid problems, estrogen, testosterone, progesterone type issues, if they have a couple or all those I like to focus upstream and see if we can rule out that mercury is not playing a roll. I also think of mercury being the headache problem, anxiety, insomnia, agitation, easily aggravated, not 100% but a skinnier frail.
When I look at lead I would say is more of the obesity or heavy weight metal, sometimes it’s really hard on the digestive tract these people usually have horrible guts. It’s not always 100% but always look at your Mom’s health history and get yourself tested. Evaluate your environment, have you been to a dental hygienist, do you get vaccinated with the flu shot every year that has 25 mcg of mercury in it. Silver amalgam fillings in your mouth, which are 50% weight mercury and 35% silver. Studies are showing for each filling that’s in your mouth increases the amount of mercury in your brain, so it’s proportional. Looking at an examination, history, symptoms, and getting tested gives the best perspective as far as looking at heavy metal toxicity and chronic exposure. Lead likes to store in bone and the reason is it’s high affinity to calcium receptors. It has a similar structure to calcium and displaces the calcium because it’s heavier and takes over the receptors. Mercury has a similar pattern with selenium and it’s found in a high amount in the thyroid. Competing with the selenium receptors of the thyroid causing your body to go after the thyroid tissues. Metals replacing the good stuff is where the autoimmune component comes in. It all comes back to inflammation, anything that triggers cellular inflammation is going to be detrimental to our health.
There is not a perfect test, for instance mercury, there is the heavy metal challenge where you take a chelator collect the urine and test it. There is hair analyses, but classically with Lyme Disease those individuals are not good excreters or drainers where they can’t get things out. Whether it’s the colon, kidney’s, skin, they don’t sweat. If you are excreting things well doing a hair analyses won’t show it either. I tend to lean toward the urine challenge, collect the urine for about six hours and see what come out. To be clear that’s not checking how much lead is in the bone or how much mercury is in the brain, it’s checking how much is stored in the tissues and from there you can get a basis.
The biofilm I really think is an area where we are going to see more and more research as Lyme forms it’s own biofilm. Let’s just say we have borrelia bacteria, and we’ve got the different forms, the spirochete form, the spiral form that can spiral into the joints. It doesn’t randomly float around in the bloodstream, it’s not part of the standard tests with Lyme disease. If you have the cyst form, the ball form that turns itself into a ball to protect itself, and when it looks like it’s safe it comes back out. The round body we used to call the cell deficient form. What will happen is these different forms will colonize together, and what they will do when they form colonies is form this substance biofilm around them to protect them. You could think of the substance like slime and now our immune system can’t see those pathogens, it works like a barrier. Biofilm is made up of different materials and there is multiple biofilms, specifically with Lyme they are made of magnesium, calcium, copper, iron, and the two biggies mercury and lead. For someone with heavy metal issues it’s very plausible that in theory if you don’t address the heavy metals that’s part of that blanket or protection over the pathogen. It’s unlikely that you will be fully ever to get “healed” of Lyme Disease because you haven’t uncovered them all. There has to be a synergy going after the Lyme and the metals together and co-infections as well. I find a slow process is best so as not to overload the body all at once.
It’s suspected that may be why some people react negatively to chelation based therapies, that they’re pealing back a biofilm and having a presence of an infectious microorganism now flair up the immune system. There are a lot of chelator’s that will grab onto the metals and pull them out but not all them work, in my book I describe the five steps and the last step is detox. There are so many steps to do ahead of time to prepare the body for, especially with Lyme disease because they don’t drain well. Anytime you start killing Lyme off or detoxing metals they have a tendency to hold things inside the body. So focusing on making sure the body has good drainage, good cardiovascular flow, good lymphatic flow, kidneys supported, liver supported, all these different pieces are important.
Pharmacokinetics, understanding how to use the chelator, IV EDTA is a big one in the medical world of chelation. I’ve had clients come to me that have been neurological wreaks from doing a long course of it. Let me explain where that comes in, each thing you take like an aspirin, Tylenol, DMSA, DMPS, EDTA, each thing has a half life. Which means how long it takes your body to metabolize or absorb it and excrete it out the body, how long it takes to get half of it out of the body. DMSA has a half life of four hours, EDTA in the IV form has a half life of about an hour and a half, if you take it as a suppository then it’s an eight hour half life. When your chelating you want to follow a half life rule, meaning you would take something every half life. That means the IV EDTA chelation you would take every hour and a half, but it would be extremely expensive and very impractical so doctors are giving about once every two weeks. What that does is it stirs the metals up but it doesn’t have a consistent amount of the chelator to pull it out of the body.
One gentlemen came to me and he kept having follow up tests that had done this chelation for a couple years, and every time he had a follow up his lead level kept coming up higher. It was interesting that every time he did the IV EDTA chelation with this doctor and followed up with a DMSA urine challenge and it kept coming up higher. I explained to him that EDTA is amazing for getting lead out of the bone but it’s not great for getting it out of the body. Let alone the IV you can’t follow the half life, so you can’t have a steady amount to pull it out of the body. So this guy came in, he was about 105 lbs. soaking wet, very frail, sixty years old, he stuttered so it took long to get sentences out, wanted to know what was going on. I told him you just have heavy metals floating around and you have never had anything grab them and pull them out of the body. There is a lot of pieces to chelation, prepping the body is important, understanding when you’re ready to start chelating. You can never chelate metals if you have amalgam fillings in your teeth, their just not going anywhere because you still have a source in your body. Then understanding what would be the right one for you, if you have a lot of lead then maybe integrating to EDTA suppository type of chelation. If it’s more mercury DMPS is great, DMSA kind of grabs onto both of those.
If somebody has Lyme Disease or mycoplasma, these are things they call stealth infections, intracellular, meaning they can go inside our cells and look like ourselves. Our immune system gets confused and it starts tagging those cells but it also starts tagging our regular cells and then you have an autoimmune condition with the body mistakingly attacking ourselves. If you have pathogens hiding inside your cells it makes it hard for your body to identify which cells are good and which cells are bad. The longer a Lyme Disease infection happens the farther and deeper it gets into this chronic autoimmune stage.
The first step in healing is the mind, not only having hope but calming the mind and knowing you’re going to get through this. You are going to find the right pieces to the puzzle, find the right help, and just understand it’s a journey. Henry Ford said whether you think you can or you can’t, you’re right. So decide in your mind you’re going to figure this out and do this.
One of my favorite food for this to start to calm the autoimmune flair up is bone broth, just make sure it’s organic, free range, grass fed, whichever kind of animal it’s from. It’s one of the most healing foods and helps in healing the gut. I love vitamin D3 with K2 and a little bit of vitamin A, colostrum is another one, glutathione, and probiotics. Sleep, Lyme people especially don’t drain well, they can’t get toxins out, like debris from pathogens being killed off. When your body sleeps that’s when it drains the excess fluid that creates a lot of heat in the brain out. There is things called glial cells in the brain, when you sleep they start to empty and drain. Yawning doesn’t necessarily mean your tired it could be your body trying to cool the brain off because of that excess of buildup. One takeaway from the Lyme summit I did is so many people recommended coffee enemas which confirmed how much they can help. So do some research on how to do that. Coffee enemas raise glutathione and they cause the liver to purge bile helping to drain out toxins. Because the body likes to recycle bile, as it takes a lot of energy to make, I recommend taking some activated charcoal or clean clay right before to catch the toxins and get them to carry out of the body before they recycle. Coffee enemas also have one of the most positive influences on super chronic pain, the two things that stand out for help with intense pain is the coffee enemas and CBD oil or tincture.
The information contained on this site is for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for diagnosis or treatment from a licensed physician. It is essential that you discuss with your doctor any symptoms or medical problems you may be experiencing.