Herbs for Protecting the Heart Against Lyme Disease
For people with Lyme disease who want a healthier heart
by Greg Lee
Have you ever seen a scary monster movie? These movies are often about frightening creatures that chase after people and terrorize them. No matter what police or soldiers do, these creatures are seemingly unstoppable. When I watched these films as a kid, my heart would beat faster and would feel like it was about to jump out of my chest.
How is a scary monster movie similar to a Lyme infection of the heart?
People with Lyme disease can also feel like they are fighting a scary monster
Just like a scary movie scene that gets your heart beating faster, a person with Lyme disease can experience a similar increase in his or her heart rate. These people can have symptoms like an irregular heart beat, palpitations, or inflammation of the heart muscle. These symptoms can come and go suddenly, which can be very scary for most people. Once Lyme disease is determined to be the cause of the heart problems, antibiotics are used to kill off the Lyme bacteria that are causing heart problems.
Patients can still have heart symptoms after antibiotic treatment
Many of these patients report that taking antibiotics led to an increase of heart symptoms. When these bacteria are killed, they release lots of toxins that can affect the heart, which can increase symptoms of pain, palpitations, or inflammation. If the Lyme toxins and infection have severely affected the heart, it can lead to reduced functioning. A new patient was receiving antibiotics for an irregular heart beat due to a Lyme infection. He asked, are there any other ways to stop my heart discomfort?
Herbal alternatives for helping the heart against a Lyme infection
According to Chinese herbal medicine, there are many herbs that can help the heart to reduce pain, arrhythmia, and inflammation. The herbal description uses keywords like “heat,” “phlegm,” and “dampness” to indicate inflammation and pain due to an infection. “Stagnation” is used to indicate a concentration of blood, fluids, or energy that can be marked by sharp stabbing pain. There are three herbs that have been effective in reducing heart pain and inflammation in people with Lyme disease.
Herb #1: Ku Shen Gen (Sophora root)
One of the most important uses of this herb is for stopping heart arrhythmia. The properties of this herb are bitter and cold. It also is used to treat insomnia, asthma, bronchitis, dysentery, diarrhea, jaundice, genital infections, itchy skin, and leprosy. It is also an immune system stimulant. Ku Shen Gen also has an inhibitory effect against Bacillus dysenteriae, E. coli, Bacillus proteus, B-hemolytic staphylococcus, and Staphylococcus aureus1.
This herb has a bitter taste, which can lead to nausea and vomiting. It is not to be used with patients that have excess coldness in their stomach.
Herb #2: San Qi (Notoginseng Root)
The properties of this herb are: sweet, slightly bitter, and warm. It dispels stagnation of the blood, stops bleeding, activates blood circulation, reduces swelling and inflammation, and relieves pain. It is used to treat arrhythmia, angina, high cholesterol, hepatitis, hypertension, and high liver enzyme levels2. Other Chinese herb texts describe this herb as having anti-toxin, calming, and nourishing properties. These texts also describe using this herb for palpitations, insomnia, traumatic injuries, and neurosis.
This herb will also enhance the effect of other anti-parasitic and anti-bacterial herbs for treating system-wide, chronic infections3. This herb is to be used cautiously with anticoagulant or antiplatelet medications.
Herb #3: Dong Chong Xia Cao (Cordyceps)
This herb is a medicinal fungus that has sweet and warm properties. It treats generalized soreness, low back and knee weakness and pain, bone or joint disorders, tinnitus, forgetfulness and poor memory. It replenishes energy especially in patients that have extreme fatigue, or are weak and have spontaneous sweating. It also strengthens the lungs, treats chronic respiratory disorders, increases platelet counts, reduces cancer symptoms, treats arrhythmia, and hypertension4.
Dong Chong Xia Cao enhances immune system white blood cells and enhances the quality and duration of sleep. It also relieves asthma, has anti-cancer properties in mice experiments, and reduces cholesterol in rats. It has an antibiotic effect on Staphylococcal spp., Streptococcal spp., and Bacillus anthracis.
These three herbs help your heart to reduce arrhythmia and palpitations, alleviate pain, neutralize toxins, and reduce inflammation. Consult with a Lyme Literate Chinese Herbalist before adding these herbs to your Lyme disease treatment program. These herbs have helped patients to reduce heart symptoms for several hundred years.
Patients report a significant reduction of heart discomfort
After taking these special anti-arrhythmia, pain alleviating, and inflammation reducing herbs, patients have reported that their heart symptoms are significantly better. Adding anti-Lyme herbs and treatments like cupping and acupuncture help to further reduce and eliminate heart-related symptoms. Using the right herbs can make a big improvement in your heart symptoms.
The right herbs can help protect your heart against a Lyme infection
Just like a happy movie ending where the scary monster gets defeated, the proper combination of herbs helps you to stop heart palpitations, reduce inflammation, and neutralize damaging toxins that are affecting your heart.
However, some of these herbs come with cautions on their use, so work with a Lyme Literate Chinese Herbalist to develop a proper, safe, and effective herbal strategy for your condition. Adding these herbs to your Lyme treatment program can help you to reduce or eliminate those scary symptoms and to have a happy heart.
1. Chen, John K., and Tina T. Chen. 2004. Chinese Medical Herbology and Pharmacology. City of Industry CA: Art of Medicine Press, Inc., p. 150 – 152
2. Chen, John K., and Tina T. Chen. 2004. Chinese Medical Herbology and Pharmacology. City of Industry CA: Art of Medicine Press, Inc., p. 587 – 590
3. Fruehauf, Heiner. “Gu Syndrome: A Forgotten Clinical Approach to Chronic Parasitism”, Journal of Chinese Medicine #57, London, England 1997, p. 16
4. Chen, John K., and Tina T. Chen. 2004. Chinese Medical Herbology and Pharmacology. City of Industry CA: Art of Medicine Press, Inc., p. 883 – 885
Come to our free film showing of Under Our Skin on Wednesday September 15th at 6pm at Two Frogs. Click here to find out more details about this controversial film on Lyme disease.