Have you been treating what you believe is lyme disease with ozone therapy for some time and you never felt any reaction to it, neither to the better nor worse?
Or only a marginal one at best?
Or you’ve been doing it for 4, 5, 6 weeks or few months and you never ever felt any relief from it? Or only a marginal one? Or it has only made you feel more miserable? Or you felt only weaker, started experiencing more fatigue, more head pressure, more stiffness in your neck, more pain in your body, more brain fog, more digestive problems, more insatiable thirst and burning in your mouth?
If that’s the case, then it might be time to consider the “unholy trinity” of lyme / candida / mercury, and that mercury and candida might be the bigger issues in your case and lyme only a marginal one.
In which case ozone therapy might not be the best approach …
Some assume that the underlying cause for lyme disease really is mercury toxicity and the resulting suppression of the immune system, making it impossible for the body to fight an invader like lyme.
It’s really difficult to overestimate mercury’s destructive properties which are reported to cause anything from allergies, chronic fatigue, crohn’s disease, insomnia, fibromyalgia to depression, panic attacks, multiple sclerosis, endoctrine disorders, cancer and – candida, just to give few examples.
Candida on the other hand can be responsible for such fun experiences like inability to focus, brain fog, irritability, dizziness, depression, fungal infections of the nails and skin, asthma, inability to lose weight, head pressure and stiff neck, digestive issues such as bloating, constipation, or diarrhea etc.
Given that many of the symptoms for lyme, candida and mercury toxicity overlap, it can be really difficult to figure out what is what, and what infection reacts to what protocol and whether the reaction is a die-off reaction or whether it’s the infection getting worse.
So how to find out whether the real problem for you is really more mercury toxicity and mercury induced candida than lyme?
How to Diagnose Mercury Toxicity?
1) Given that no blood, urine, hair, or challenge tests can accurately show mercury levels, Andrew Cutler proposes an indirect method to diagnose mercury toxicity, which he says is much more accurate than conventional methods.
Mercury has one property which so far no other metal is known to have: mercury will block the absorption of good minerals like magnesium, calcium, potassium, molybdenum, zinc etc.
One can use that unique property to diagnose mercury toxicity with a high degree of accuracy.
So what one really tests for is malabsorption of essential minerals, or what Andrew Cutler calls “deranged mineral transport”.
If deranged mineral transport is present, it will show on a hair test.
After studying hundreds of case studies and hair tests, Andrew Cutler developed “Counting Rules” to properly interpret hair tests and look for disturbed mineral levels. To be able to apply the counting rules, a DDI hair test is needed, which can be obtained either here https://www.directlabs.com/OrderTests/tabid/55/language/en-US/Default.aspx (hair elements DD kit) for $89 or here http://www.holisticheal.com/hair-elements-test-kit.html for $85
2) Another way to diagnose mercury is clinically, meaning through observation of symptoms.
Have you experienced any of the following symptoms in your life at some point to some degree? –
- have periods of high productivity interspersed with periods of non-productivity?
- life seems to progress in fits and starts?
- the productive periods become shorter with time and happen less often?
- depression, fatigue, listlessness
- loss of interest in one’s surroundings?
- inability to experience joy
- constant fear of for example losing one’s job
- feeling constantly tense
- feeling hopeless
- having the sense of impending doom
- small problems become discouraging
- personal relationships are impaired
- one becomes increasingly irritable and sensitive, reacting strongly to just minor remarks
- lose temper easily
- inability to take orders or instructions
- have an exaggerated response to stimulation
- become fearful, anxious and nervous
- become shy and avoid strangers
- engage in long, repetitive conversations
- eventually withdrawing from social settings
- deteriorating intelligence
- short term memory seems affected and ability to reason logically
- inability to concentrate, to balance one’s checkboo, do math or play chess
- loss of motivation
- heavy, repetitive and pedantic thinking
- loss of ability to think creatively
- make stylistic or grammatical errors while speaking
- ability to express onself declines
- brain fog
- lack of dreams during sleep
- dizziness, tinnitus, insomania, daytime drowsiness
- loss of appetite
- diarrhea, often alternating with constipation
- cold hands and feet
- tendency towards sweating or lack of sweating
- flushing or reddening of the skin
- digestive problems
- dry skin, athlete’s foot, toenail fungus
- skin becomes itchy, flaky and peels
- hair becomes thin, dry, less strongly colored, grows slowlier and becomes brittle
- biological clock is disturbed: waking up late and staying up late is more common
- inability to control one’s circadian rhythm
- visual disturbances, including alterations in color perception
- ability to focus on distant object and peripheral vision is impaired
- tingling in hands and feet, loss of feeling
- spongy gums which bleed easily
- loose teeth (can be wiggled very slightly)
- excessive salivation, bad breath
- impaired sense of smell, hearing
- ability to understand and interpret sounds diminishes
- sharp points of discomfort in ears at bedtime
- body’s ability to regulate temperature is impaired: alternating between being hot and cold when temperature isn’t changing
- night sweats
(for a better description of those symptoms go to http://www.noamalgam.com/#WHAT%20IT%20DOES or read “Amalgam Illness” by Andrew Cutler, page 25)
Many of those symptoms reflect large parts of my life in surprising detail.
How to Chelate Mercury Safely and Efficiently?
IMPORTANT: CHELATION CAN ONLY BE DONE AFTER REMOVAL OF AMALGAM FILLINGS! (or after any other ongoing mercury exposure has been stopped).
There are again many different and many conflicting opinions, with every doctor or researcher claiming to know the best method.
I will present only one method here – Andrew Cutler’s approach – which many proponents claim is the safest and most effective one. Andrew Cutler’s program is different from others in a number of aspects:
1) It stresses the importance of half lives of chelators. Every drug or supplement has its own half life (the amount of time after which only half of the original dosage of the drug/supplement is still present in the blood), which is often important for the drug to be effective – a basic knowledge that apparently every medical student is taught in medical school, yet very few doctors apply in practice.
Cutler says that unless mercury chelators are taken in a way which guarantees a steady level of the chelator in the blood over a period of ideally 72 hours, the procedure will only result in a redistribution of mercury inside the body and not or minimal chelation will take place. Future worsening of symptoms or the creation of new pathologies often takes place later in life.
Every 72 hours chelation period should be followed by at least another 72 hours break period.
The half lives of the only 3 true chelators are:
– ALA: 3 hours
– DMSA: 2.5 to 3.5 hours
– DMPS: 8 hours
That means that in order for the chelators to be effective they need to be taken in those time intervals – day and night for 72 hours (given that a shorter time interval is not problematic when chelating, only a longer one is, it is ok to take ALA and DMSA every 3 hours to make the protocol less complicated).
2) According to Cutler there are only 3 true chelators: ALA, DMSA and DMPS.
Out of those ALA is the only one which can chelate mercury out of the brain.
DMSA and DMPS can only pull mercury out of the blood and organs but they will not chelate mercury trapped in the brain.
The only absolutely necessary chelator is therefor ALA. DMSA and DMPS can speed chelation up and make it more manageable.
For a chelator to be a true chelator, a compound has to have a di-thiol (double sulfur) bond since only then does the Hg (mercury) bond strongly enough to the compound and minimizes the risk of redistribution. All other single thiol compounds like glutathione, chlorella, cilantro extracts, DMSO, etc. are dangerous since they will only contribute to moving the mercury around without excreting it safely (or only minimally).
3) Respecting the half life of chelators is so important that if one accidentally misses a dosage, the round has to be aborted and only resumed after several days of taking a break.
4) Chelation can only take place orally and with very low starting dosages. For ALA recommended are 20mg, although some people have to go as low as 2mg. If symptoms during the round are too pronounced, it’s a sign of a too high dosage.
5) Supplementation is very important during chelation, since it makes sure that the chelated tissue can recover quicker and be protected from some mobilized mercury during the chelation.
For that I suggest Andrew Cutler’s books or this website: http://www.livingnetwork.co.za/chelationnetwork/chelation-the-andy-cutler-protocol/
6) Another great way to remove mercury from the body are saunas.
Mercury will leave the body through sweat. Cutler says steam saunas are preferable to infrared saunas.
A one hour sauna session is comparable to around 1 round of DMPS.
Apparently, saunas can only remove mercury from the extracellular space, not what is bound in organs or brain.
Depending on the severity of the mercury toxicity and the genetic predisposition of a person to either secrete Hg easily or less easily it can take several years and a couple of hundreds of rounds to fully recover. I’m currently on round #30 and 8 months into chelation. during that time my fatigue, the ability to concentrate and absorb new and more complicated information has improved dramatically; my speech has become more fluid and i seem to be able to think quicker and be able to access words faster.
Mercury Chelation and Ozone Therapy
Whatever I say here is mostly my own conclusions or based on my personal experience with the two protocols so far, given that there is not much information on the Andrew Cutler protocol coupled with ozone therapy.
I’ve started the Cutler protocol ca. 8 months ago and for the first 5 months I had been doing ozone therapy (ozone saunas, vaginal and rectal insufflations, some ear insufflations and few o3 IVs) in between the chelation days. I separated my ozone treatments from the ALA rounds since ALA is a potent anti-oxidant, so I assumed that it’s probably not a good idea to mix those 2 things or otherwise I would be running the risk of cancelling the two out. [According to Cutler this is a wrong assumption. Ozone therapy can be performed during chelation.]
During that time I was able to dramatically reduce my adrenal fatigue symptoms. Given that I read that it can take up to 2 or 3 years to reverse adrenal fatigue, it seemed unusual. I don’t know whether it was due to my adrenals not being too affected by Hg to begin with or whether it was the ozone which did that.
Andrew Cutler, believing that mercury does damage to the body by creating oxidative stress, recommends heavy supplementation with anti-oxidants like vit C and vit E (I’ve tried vit E and although it was a very expensive gluten-free brand it gave me instant diarrhea; I did drink a lot of vit C). Given that he also believes that anti-oxidants can reduce the risk of cancer it looks like he might have fallen victim to the erroneous assumption that oxidative stress causes cancer and anti-oxidants reduce it, with research showing exactly the opposite is true: (http://www.genengnews.com/gen-news-highlights/james-watson-hypothesis-links-cancer-to-antioxidants/81247848/ and http://ispub.com/IJPS/7/1/3757)
So if his basic assumptions about oxidative stress are wrong, it might be possible that his assumption of how mercury does damage to the body is wrong as well. So it might be that the symptoms experienced during chelation are not due to Hg causing oxidative stress but due to it causing damage in a different way.
From a personal point of view, what would nevertheless speak for Cutler being right, is my experience with high dosages of vit C during chelation. It does seem that vit C (a potent anti-oxidant) does indeed keep the mercury chelation symptoms under control. But given that vit C in large dosages also stimulates the body’s hydrogen peroxide production, and hence increases oxidative stress, it could also possibly refute Cutler’s claim that it’s the oxidative stress which causes the damage.
So all in all, my mind is not entirely made up about whether it’s a good idea to combine ozone therapy with Andrew Cutler’s chelation protocol. It’s something I think everyone has to find out individually, also given that people’s mercury toxicity levels vary greatly and most people suffer from other pathologies like inflammation or other non lyme related infections the reduction or elimination of which can be achieved with ozone therapy and can offer a great relief and improve quality of life while continuing with mercury chelation.
Can Ozone Chelate Mercury?
Some doctors, like Saul Pressman, maintain that ozone will oxidize methylmercury to harmless mercury oxide which the body then will safely excrete. Having done extensive ozone therapy in my life (up to 3 or 4 hours per day for 5 or 6 months at a time) I cannot say that my experience supports this theory.
If ozone does help extrete mercury, then to a marginal degree at best, but it’s pure speculation on my part. Once I started the Andrew Cutler chelation therapy I started experiencing symptoms which according to Cutler were typical for someone who was mercury toxic, which I did not experience while doing ozone.
If ozone has any positive effect on mercury toxicity it might be through its ability to stimulate the body’s glutathione production and so maybe help the body excrete marginally more Hg – a theory which does not seem to be necessarily supported by Andrew Cutler’s research.
So I tend to think that no, ozone cannot chelate mercury.
If it does, then only to an extremely limited degree and possibly stirring and redistributing Hg up to some degree without chelating it. But again: that’s just a speculation of mine.
Mercury and Candida
It has been observed that many people who suffer from mercury toxicity also suffer from candidiasis. There are different explanations for that:
– some say that mercury, having antibiotic properties, will destroy the good gut bacteria which keep candida in check and so allow for the candida to take over
– Andrew Cutler says that low levels of mercury prevent neutrophils, a kind of white blood cells, from producing oxygen radicals which in turn kill yeast
– others again say that since candida binds mercury, it’s the body’s way to protect itself from mercury
Whatever the connection is, an overwhelming percentage of people who have candida have also mercury toxicity. So if mercury in fact is the underlying cause for candida infection, it will be difficult to near impossible to get rid of candida before getting rid of mercury.
Candida and Ozone
Ozone kills candida but it can also indirectly make candida worse.
Candida’s headquarters in the human body is the large intestine. Rectal insufflations or vaginal insufflations can greatly reduce candida. But if the underlying cause of candida is mercury, ozone will offer only a temporary improvement. Ozone can also cause candida to become systemic, due to a little known fact which is that candida can feed on both ketones and glucose. Mark Sisson explains:
“Paul Jaminet, who suffered from candida overgrowth,argues that since candida (being eukaryotes) have mitochondria that can feed on both ketones and carbs (as opposed to prokaryote bacteria without mitochondria), going very low carb or ketogenic will only provide more fuel for the overgrowth. Furthermore, since ketones are water-soluble and pass easily through cellular membranes, ketones will actually be a more accessible food source for candida.” http://www.marksdailyapple.com/candida/#ixzz2zJArfAqe
Doing ozone is like subjecting one’s body to a high powered workout.
Basically, ozone makes the body burn more energy and so promotes ketosis which in turn causes candida to spread. In order to control o3’s ketosis generation, it’s good to increase carbohydrate intake before or after an ozone session. But since candida will feed on both glucose and ketones the trick is to find the right balance, since too much carbohydrates will also promote candida overgrowth. Candida’s unique trait to get worse during ketosis is so reliable that one can use it as a diagnostic tool, says Paul Jaminet:
“Medicine is still in a primitive state it’s not very good for diagnosing these infections much less treating them. But a lot of these pathogens respond very differently to different diets. So one of the key differences is in how they respond to a ketogenic diet for instance. So pathogens that have mitochondria like fungi and protozoa can metabolize ketones for energy. Bacteria and viruses can’t, and so if you go on a ketogenic diet you’ll starve bacteria and viruses but you’ll feed fungi and protozoa. And so a simple thing to do is go on a ketogenic diet for a while, do your symptoms get worse or better. And that can tell you which class of pathogen you have, one with mitochondria or one that doesn’t have mitochondria.” http://chriskresser.com/episode-15-dr-paul-jaminet-on-chronic-infections-depression-more
To see what symptoms can be attributed to candida, a good way is to not eat for a while and see what symptoms get worse during that time and which symptoms improve after adding carbohydrates. In that way, one can become aware of what symptoms to look out for to gauge whether the body is going into ketosis or not.
It’s a diagnostic tool that I find very reliable.
Whenever I go into ketosis my head pressure and the sensation of stiffness in my neck increases and I start experiencing a burning sensation in my mouth which I cannot quench with liquids but only with carbohydrate intake. If i let the head pressure get worse, brain fog sets in. If I catch the ketosis in time and eat some carbohydrates like sweet or regular potatoes, cooked carrots, beets or winter squash – the symptoms abate.
Some people who treat themselves with ozone therapy for what they believe is Lyme disease do not see any progress. Given that Lyme, candida and mercury toxicity have sometimes overlapping symptoms, it’s possible that those people are dealing mostly with mercury and candida and only a minor Lyme infection or none at all. The most accurate way to diagnose mercury toxicity is by having a DDI hair test analysis done and by applying Andrew Cutler’s counting rules to the essential minerals levels on the test, NOT by looking at the mercury levels themselves which in most cases will be inaccurate.
Andrew Cutler also offers a relatively safe and efficient protocol to remove mercury with oral ALA, DMSA and DMPS which can be done at home and which respects the half lives of those chelators.
Candida can be tested by using knowledge of candida’s ability to feed on ketones and by observing one’s symptoms during ketosis. By keeping a balance between glucose intake and ketosis, candida can be prevented from going systemic.
Ozone will kill candida but it can also indirectly promote it by promoting ketosis. Ozone’s ketosis generation can be off-set by a higher carbohydrate intake which will keep candida in check until all mercury and hence the underlying problem of candida is removed.
Mercury and lyme connection: http://www.chroniclymedisease.com/mercury-and-lyme-disease Diseases linked to mercury toxicity:
Short Andrew Cutler bio: http://www.noamalgam.com/#aboutauthor
Detailed overview of Andrew Cutler’s protocol: http://www.livingnetwork.co.za/chelationnetwork/chelation-the-andy-cutler-protocol/
Andrew Cutler explaining why mercury causes candida: (http://onibasu.com/archives/am/917.html)
How many people who have candida are mercury toxic: (http://www.yeastinfectionadvisor.com/mercurypoisoning.html)