By Dr. Kyle Warren
Edited by Meghan Feir Walker
There is a problem I see time and again that is stalling the healing progress of patients with Lyme disease and other co-infections: vitamin and mineral deficiencies. You need to know that your levels of vitamins and minerals impact the success and speed of Lyme protocols!
I don’t know about you, but I hate going slow. I have learned to be patient as I’ve matured, but I want things solved efficiently and quickly. Ensuring you have healthy levels of vitamins and minerals will speed up your recovery process during a Lyme protocol. Not having enough of something fundamental like vitamin C, A, or glutathione is the dumbest reason to fail.
When I started taking care of these fundamental pieces of health, my results got better with my Lyme disease patients. It’s important for you, too, and it’s easy!
In this article, I will be going over how important vitamins and minerals are in your fight against pathogens and how deficiencies can have a huge impact on your healing from Lyme disease and Lyme co-infections. I’ll also share some patient examples of how these nutrients can impact a body’s ability to heal and how this may help you in your own fight against Lyme disease and co-infections.
To watch our accompanying video to this article, click here.
You can’t get better from just killing the Lyme bacteria
Every year, I like to attend two or three live conferences to stay abreast of the latest information on Lyme and co-infection testing, treatments, herbal and medical approaches, and more. After all, we want to continually improve our protocols in the clinic, and we want our patients to get better as quickly as possible with the fewest problems along the way.
One of the conferences we attended in 2020 was called “The Truth About Lyme Disease” where Jacob Leone was a speaker. Leone is a naturopathic doctor from Northern California who treats Lyme and other chronic illnesses. He was one of the published authors of this paper that came from Johns Hopkins in 2020 where they looked at certain natural agents’ abilities to kill diseases.
In addition to this article, we have other videos and articles where I walk through this paper.
During his presentation, he hammered home this point: Killing the Lyme bacteria in your system by using antibiotics or herbal remedies is not enough to get you better! We must be rebuilding the immune system and the broken parts of the body alongside killing the bugs.
To help illustrate the main points we focus on in our clinic’s approach toward Lyme disease, look at this graphic.
Only focusing on step number one, killing chronic Lyme and co-infections isn’t a complete enough plan for many patients to recover. In this article, we are focusing on the importance of step number three (the green arrow), which is giving the body the raw materials it needs to help finish the battle of the bugs.
Nutritional deficiencies stall healing for Lyme patients
Vitamins and Minerals Impact the Success and Speed of Lyme Protocols
An aspect of healing from Lyme disease and co-infections that does not get addressed enough is the importance of adequate vitamin and mineral levels. This is imperative to check and address when trying to fight off Lyme disease and other chronic co-infections, such as Bartonella, Babesia, Anaplasma, Powassan virus, and others.
When you are deficient in certain nutrients, you can get stuck in your healing journey. It either takes you much longer to get better or you aren’t able to get better at all.
Put simply, Vitamin and mineral deficiencies can stop you from recovering from Lyme disease and co-infections. Your levels of vitamins and minerals impact the success and speed of Lyme protocols!
Patient examples of vitamins and minerals helping Lyme battles
Vitamins and minerals are essential for your healing process.
Some of our patients were stuck in their Lyme healing journey; they were unable to kill the bug(s) because they lacked the nutrients their immune system requires to function properly. Other patients had actually killed the bug(s), but they weren’t seeing their symptoms improve. They were still fatigued, had nerve symptoms, etc. because they were missing raw materials they needed to heal.
Since low levels of vitamins and minerals can stop you from recovering quickly and fully, I want to share a few patient examples. These patients were stuck until we were able to get their micronutrient levels replenished. This was an extremely important piece of the puzzle when it came to their healing from Lyme disease and/or tick-borne co-infections.
Patient example No. 1: Vitamin A is crucial for the immune system
This is an example of where micronutrients were key in helping someone move forward both in killing Babesia and recovering from this parasitic infection.
Patient case No. 1 was continuing to experience extreme fatigue. She had already gotten rid of Lyme disease, but she couldn’t seem to shake Babesia, even after multiple rounds of antibiotics. When we ran this micronutrient test to see why she was stuck, we found her body was deficient in vitamin A and vitamin D3.
This may not seem like a big deal when her other levels look good, but it is! Vitamin A is extremely important in helping the body overcome Babesia. The standard herbs that are effective against Babesia don’t work by themselves. Artemesia and cryptolepis-based therapies do not work properly when someone is deficient in vitamin A.
Once her body had enough vitamin A, she was finally able to overcome Babesia because her immune system had the necessary materials to function properly.
This patient also faced extreme fatigue. We could also see on her test that she was deficient in CoQ10, a powerful antioxidant that helps convert food into energy.
CoQ10 is another necessary nutrient for energy production. Even if you get rid of Lyme and another infection like Babesia, if you don’t have enough CoQ10, you will not feel energetic and have stamina.
This is very common with Lyme disease. Fighting Lyme is a war and it can lead to extensive damage. Much of the time you need to replenish the nutrients your system needs before you will experience full symptom recovery.
When we gave her body more CoQ10, her energy finally returned.
After working with this patient, her husband called and said, “Oh my gosh, she’s back; she’s able to do everything, and she’s like my companion again.” He was so excited.
Patient example No. 2: B-vitamin deficiencies causing neuropathy and fatigue
Patient case No. 2 is an example of someone who had defeated Lyme, but they had lingering problems with fatigue and neuropathy.
In this patient’s case, they were dealing with five B-vitamin deficiencies.
As you look at their test results, anything that’s in the red is a deficient level, and anything that’s black is a borderline deficiency. We want to help improve anything red or black.
B-vitamin deficiencies can contribute to and cause neuropathy. It’s very hard to heal dizziness, tingling, burning, and nerve pain without proper levels of B vitamins. This person’s nerve symptoms were not resolved until we raised their B vitamin levels, specifically pantothenate, aka B5.
If you don’t have enough pantothenate/B5, you will end up with what we call “push-crash” where you push to do something and then you crash, run out of gas, and have to take some time to recover. Sometimes this can take days for people. B5 is extremely important when it comes to maintaining energy.
It’s also important for immunoglobulin production, which is part of your immune system. Some people can’t even kill the Lyme and co-infections without B5. So not only are you extremely tired, but you also can’t overcome these infections. This is because B5 is important for your immune system to function well.
Once this patient raised their B-vitamin levels, their energy greatly improved and they were able to heal nerve symptoms.
Patient example No. 3: Biotin is crucial for gut health, B12 for energy
Another one of our patients was dealing with fatigue and multiple gut symptoms. Despite going through several gut cleanses, they had multiple food reactions that wouldn’t go away. This patient was referred to me by another practitioner who had put them on various gut cleanses for problems like Candida overgrowth, SIBO, and several other digestive cleanses.
Although these were good gut protocols, we found out the major problem was that they had Lyme disease that needed to be dug out.
After we rid their body of Lyme, we tested their micronutrients and found they were deficient in vitamin B12 (cobalamin) and biotin (B7, aka vitamin H), along with being borderline deficient in vitamins B2 (riboflavin), B5 (pantothenate), and B9 (folate). We then began working with them to replenish their nutrients.
While biotin isn’t as famous as glutamine for helping the gut, It’s very hard to heal it without biotin. In this case, their glutamine levels were very good, but their biotin levels were far too low. Biotin is essential for healing the gut.
Once we raised their biotin level, they were able to heal their gut and eat more foods without being so reactive. Their energy also improved once they had more B12.
B12 is famous for raising energy levels, which is why it’s the featured ingredient in things like 5-hour energy drinks and other energy-boosting products.
This patient had been extremely drained of energy and couldn’t heal their gut because Lyme disease had destroyed their digestive system, leaving them too depleted to heal. When we added in B12 and biotin, they were able to recover and feel well.
Testing your micronutrients
The micronutrient test we use in the clinic checks your vitamin and mineral levels inside the cells. Vitamin and mineral level testing is more accurate inside the cells compared to testing the fluid of the blood.
Symptoms don’t always indicate a current infection; they can indicate deficiencies
A common misconception is assuming that if you still have symptoms, you’re still dealing with active Lyme disease or co-infections. This may or may not be true. In some cases, micronutrient deficiencies can be the cause of continuing symptoms, which is why micronutrient testing is so crucial.
When you’re dealing with Lyme disease and co-infections, each person handles it differently and has varying deficiencies, which is why testing is imperative. Every patient has unique needs.
For example, if you’re missing vitamin C, vitamin A, or vitamin B5, your immune system may struggle. We need to know the specifics so we can help you recover.
The micronutrient test helps us customize your plan. It helps us learn why your body can’t finish the killing or detoxifying process, what’s contributing to your symptoms, and what your body needs to get stronger and recover.
Recovering from Lyme disease and co-infections isn’t a one-step process. While killing bugs is an extremely important part of the process, checking micronutrients is absolutely essential in healing and repairing the body.
I like this graphic we use because it illustrates how there is no fix-it pill that does it all. You need to go through these stages to fully get over these infections and recover.
Don’t ignore your micronutrients
I hope these examples helped you learn more about Lyme disease and Lyme co-infections and the complicated nature of healing from them. There is no doubt about it: Your levels of vitamins and minerals impact the success and speed of Lyme protocols!
Micronutrients are an important part of restoring your immune system and body functions. When dealing with chronic infections such as Lyme, we find vitamins and mineral levels are often ignored.
Because of that, patients come to our office who are failing in other therapies because this part of the puzzle has been overlooked.
Don’t assume you have adequate levels of all the nutrients you need because that’s often not true. In our clinic, we often find that’s a dangerous assumption to make. This is often ignored or forgotten, but it should be of utmost importance.
I hope this article helps you in your journey toward health. Remember: You can get better and you can be healthy! If you understand what’s making you sick, you can get better. More information is power.
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- When dealing with chronic Lyme, expecting to get better by simply taking something that kills the bug is wrong. This kind of thinking will fail you. It doesn’t matter whether it’s herbally based or an antibiotic.
- To heal from Lyme disease, you can’t just focus on killing the bugs. It’s not a complete enough plan. You need to give your body the raw materials it needs to function well.
- Vitamin and mineral deficiencies can stop you from recovering from Lyme disease and co-infections.
- Vitamin A is necessary for immune functions. It’s critical for addressing Babesia because herbs like artemisia and cryptolepis won’t work well without it.
- B-vitamin deficiencies can contribute to and cause neuropathy. One patient’s nerve symptoms were not resolved until we raised their B vitamin levels, specifically pantothenate, aka B5.
- Some patients can’t get over infections without enough B5.
- In the third patient example, they were deficient in five B vitamins. The biotin deficiency was contributing to gut issues and food reactions. Their B12 deficiency was making them fatigued.
- Recovering from Lyme disease and co-infections isn’t a one-step process. While killing bugs is an extremely important part of the process, checking micronutrients is absolutely essential in healing and repairing the body.
- When you’re dealing with Lyme disease and co-infections, each person handles it differently and has varying deficiencies and needs, which is why testing is imperative.
- Your levels of vitamins and minerals impact the success and speed of Lyme protocols!