Definition of Dysbiosis:
A disturbance in the balance of bacterial flora in the gastrointestinal tract, resulting in dysfunctions (such as diarrhea, malabsorption, or the absorbing of toxins from the gut) with a wide range of symptoms.
Very common, up to 50% of the population may be affected at some time.
Effective treatment usually requires dietary changes to discourage the growth of disease-causing organisms, and recolonization of the gastrointestinal tract with probiotics.
Lack of energy and digestive disturbances, arthritic joint pains, skin disease, menstrual problems, emotional instability and depression. All symptoms of what I call the 'antibiotic syndrome' which have greatly increased in frequency in recent years.
On further examination, more symptoms may be discovered. Most of the gastrointestinal tract is tender when pressed, especially the small intestine, liver and gall bladder. There may even have been a gall bladder operation that failed to improve the condition, sometimes even worsening the symptoms.
There could be a history of thrush or oral, anal or vaginal itching. When these are present the diagnosis of Candida is obvious but it may also be present in the absence of these manifestations and that can be somewhat confusing. The yeast or fungus Candida albicans, of course, thrives during antibiotic treatment. I regard it as reckless negligence to prescribe antibiotics without simultaneous fungicides and replacement therapy with lactobacilli afterwards. I believe that this practice has greatly added to our vast pool of a chronically sick population.
However, the 'antibiotic syndrome' is not just due to Candida. I regard it more generally as a 'dysbiosis' where the wrong kind of microbes inhabit the intestinal tract, not just Candida and other fungi, but many types of pathogenic bacteria including coli bacteria which are normal in the colon but become disease-forming when they ascend into the small intestine.
If the problem has existed for years, there is usually a lack of gastric acid which then allows the stomach to be colonized by microbes, causing inflammation with pain and later, ulcers. The toxins released by the microbial overpopulation cause in addition chronic inflammation of the liver, gall bladder, pancreas and intestines. I regard it as rather likely that a chronic inflammation of the pancreas is a major contributing factor in the development of insulin-dependent diabetes.
Specific types of pathogenic bacteria appear to cause or contribute to specific autoimmune diseases. One variety of coli bacteria, for instance, produces a molecule that is very similar to insulin. When the immune system becomes activated against this molecule it may then also attack related features at the beta cells of the pancreas
Another type of bacteria, Yersinia enterocolitica, induces an immune response that attacks the thyroid gland and leads to Grave's disease with a serious overproduction of thyroid hormones.
Ulcerative colitis is linked to overgrowth with pathogenic microbes, the same as Crohn's disease, osteoporosis and ankylosing spondylitis. In ankylosing spondylitis the vertebra of the spine fuse together causing stiffness and pain. Other joints may in time become affected.
Klebsiella, another type of pathogenic bacteria, produces a molecule that is similar to a tissue type found in people with this disease. When klebsiella numbers in the gut decrease, related antibodies in the blood decrease and the condition improves.
Rheumatoid arthritis is linked to other bacteria, called proteus. Proteus is also a common cause of urinary tract infections. Women suffer urinary tract infections as well as rheumatoid arthritis twice as often as men, while men usually have higher levels of klebsiella and three times more ankylosing spondylitis than women.
In addition microbial overgrowth damages the intestinal wall so that only partly digested food particles can pass into the bloodstream, causing allergies. In this way all autoimmune diseases can be linked to food allergies.
While rheumatoid arthritis is a frequent feature of the antibiotic syndrome, and I regard it as relatively easy to cure, not many sufferers of this disease seem to be interested in this natural approach. The other day a young man with severe rheumatoid arthritis knocked at my door to collect money for a medically sponsored walkathon. When I told him that I do not give money for drug treatment as it can be overcome with natural therapies, he shouted: 'You are mad!' and left visibly upset.
Other autoimmune diseases that have so far been linked to dysbiosis are psoriasis, lupus erythematosus and pancreatitis. When remedies are given that bind bacterial endotoxins, these conditions usually improve. A further consequence of dysbiosis is susceptibility to food poisoning as with salmonella bacteria, while a healthy intestinal flora prevents these from multiplying and causing trouble.
Staphylococcus aureus or golden staph cause serious infections in hospital patients. It has been found that not only golden staph but also other infections are greatly potentised when they occur with a Candida overgrowth. As Candida overgrowth is a natural outcome of the standard hospital treatment, it is easy to see why golden staph is so deadly in hospitals.
A similar picture emerges with AIDS. People do not die from the AIDS virus but from Candida-potentised bacterial infections. I also see the antibiotic-induced dysbiosis in babies and infants as the main cause of their frequent infections, glue ear and greatly contributing to cot death.
While it used to be uncommon for children to have more than one or two infections a year, now more than six is the norm.
In the 1940's Candida was found in only three per cent of autopsies, now the figure is nearer thirty per cent. There are, of course, other factors that can cause dysbiosis - the contraceptive pill, steroids and other drugs, radiation treatment and chemotherapy - but the main culprit is, without doubt, antibiotics.
Closely related to Candida are the mycoplasms or pleomorphic organisms. These have been shown to be a main factor in the causation of cancer. Therefore, antifungal therapy also has major benefits in cancer treatment.
Dr. Orian Truss
In 1953 Dr. Orian Truss discovered the devastating effects of antibiotics in an Alabama (USA) hospital. During a hospital round Truss was intrigued by a gaunt, apparently elderly man who was obviously dying. However, he was only in his forties and in hospital for four months. No specialist had been able to make a diagnosis. Out of curiosity Truss asked the patient when be was last completely well.
The man answered that he was well until six months before when he had cut his finger. He had received antibiotics for this. Shortly afterwards he developed diarrhea and his health deteriorated. Truss had seen before how antibiotics cause diarrhea. It was known that Candida was opportunistic and thrived in debilitated patients, but now Truss wondered if it might not be the other way round, that Candida actually caused the debilitated condition.
He had read that potassium iodide solution could be used to treat Candida infestation of the blood. So he put the patient on six to eight drops of Lugol's solution four times a day and soon the patient was again completely well.
Soon afterwards he had a female patient with a stuffy nose, a throbbing headache, vaginitis and severe depression. To his amazement all her problems immediately cleared with Candida treatment. Some time later he saw a female patient who had been schizophrenic for six years with hundreds of electroshock treatments and massive drug dosages. He started treating the woman for sinus allergies with a Candida vaccine. Soon she had recovered mentally and physically, and remained well.
From then on he treated his patients against Candida at the slightest indication of its presence. Many of his patients made remarkable recoveries from most unusual conditions including menstrual problems, hyperactivity, learning disabilities, autism, multiple sclerosis and autoimmune diseases such as Crohn's disease and lupus erythematosus.
Every experienced naturopath can relate similar success stories. Ironically, antibiotics are usually not necessary in the first place. In a few per cent of the cases in which they are necessary their serious after effects could easily be avoided using fungicides and lactobacilli.
Many people doubt the effectiveness of natural therapies against apparently serious infections, but my experience leads me to believe that frequently natural therapies are more effective, without causing the repeated and chronic infections seen after antibiotics. I have seen patients who have been unsuccessful on long-term antibiotic treatment recover within days or weeks with natural therapies.
Curing the 'Antibiotic Syndrome'
The main treatment for the 'antibiotic syndrome' is sanitation of the gastrointestinal tract combined with a low-allergy diet. In this way most acute problems can be overcome within weeks while degenerated joints or organs can start a slower road to recovery.
One unpleasant side-effect of most methods used to reduce the pathogenic microbial overgrowth of the intestines is the Herxheimer reaction - a sudden worsening of symptoms due to toxins released by the dead or dying microbes. This is sometimes used as a diagnostic tool, especially for Candida.
I recommend flushes combined with antimicrobial remedies to avoid or minimize unpleasant side effects. An isotonic flush consists of nine grams or one heaped teaspoon of salt in one lifter of water and is suitable for sensitive individuals and generally with low to normal blood pressure. A solution is said to be isotonic if it contains a similar amount of salt as the blood. An Epsom salt flush may contain one tablespoon of Epsom salt, more or less according to need, in a large glass of water and is useful in cases of constipation and with raised blood pressure.
A crushed clove of garlic can be added to the flush to reduce the microbial overgrowth. If garlic cannot be used then up to two teaspoons of three per cent hydrogen peroxide (food-grade) may be added instead. You can take another glass of water after the Epsom salt to wash down the bitter aftertaste but not after the isotonic flush, as it would no longer be isotonic.
The flush will carry most of the dead microbes and their toxins out of the body and minimize any unpleasant reactions. However, if the flush should not be sufficient to produce a strong bowel movement within two to three hours, then another flush, preferably with Epsom salt, should immediately follow or unpleasant reactions may occur.
As a precaution after antibiotic therapy, as a general body cleanse or if there are only mild symptoms of microbial overgrowth, it will be sufficient to continue this for about three days. In severe and long standing cases the flush may be used for several weeks. If Candida overgrowth is suspected, any sexual partner should have at least a short flush period. If it is inconvenient to continue with a flush, as for instance with work commitments, then it may be acceptable to have a flush just once or twice and then continue for a long time with a high intake of acidophilus and bifido cultures.
Acidophilus & Bifido
This leads us to the next step: replacing the decimated pathogenic microbes with desirable lactobacilli. This must be done in a massive dose 30-60 minutes after each flush, otherwise the unwanted microbes may grow back to full strength after the next meal. Acidophilus culture is used to repopulate the freed-up spaces at the walls of the small intestines, while bifido bacteria are the protective inhabitants of the colon or large intestines.
There are several possibilities. These bacterial cultures are available from health food shops as powders in brown glass bottles that should be refrigerated before and after sale. You may either buy a mixed culture and take two teaspoons in water or vegetable juice or one teaspoon each of the separate cultures. If you suspect cows' milk allergy, which is rather frequent in this condition, then use milk-free cultures. Alternatively, you may take about 5 high-potency capsules.
However, initially it is even better to combine these high-potency capsules or powders with fresh self-made yogurt. You may use these cultures as a starter to make your own yogurt. Because of the problems caused by cows' milk, you may use goats' milk, soya milk or even rice milk. In Australia I found the Sungold brand of Soya milk to make the best yogurt. Goats' milk and rice milk may not set creamy because of their lower protein content, but that does not matter as the beneficial bacteria are in the liquid whey.
Because you will need to keep the milk warm for several hours until it has set the easiest way to make your yogurt is with a yogurt maker. The temperature should remain between 30 and 450C, best just below 410C. As starter either add several teaspoons of powdered cultures or use a cup of commercial yogurt made with acidophilus and bifido bacteria. Later you only need to take about a cup of the previous batch of yogurt as a starter for the next one. If the yogurt should become too acid or otherwise spoil at a later date, begin again with a fresh culture as starter. Refrigerate the yogurt after it sets.
Take a cupful of this yogurt best together with acidophilus powder or capsules after each flush, using more before or with other meals. It may not set as firmly as commercial yogurt and is somewhat more acid, similar to acidophilus milk.
Continue taking either the cultures or yogurt for several months after you have stopped taking a flush. Women should also for a few days or weeks apply yogurt or acidophilus powder to the vagina. It is preferable initially for a few days to douche with diluted hydrogen peroxide solution at a strength of one teaspoon of three per cent peroxide to a glass of water or more or less according to sensitivity.
For those who do not ingest acidophilus/bifido products regularly it would be good to take a course once a year just as a precaution, but especially with or after taking any drugs, medical or recreational, or when leading a stressful life.
The diet during therapy should be free of sweeteners, sweet foods, yeast, alcohol and, initially, fruits. Various supplements, such as caprylic acid, can be useful but are not necessary with this flush method.
If the Candida problem is severe or exists already for a long time, chances are that the fungus has already invaded the bloodstream and internal organs. In addition to intestinal sanitation, I recommend to eliminate Candida and other parasites by using wormwood. Parasite infestations combine with fungi, such as Candida, to greatly undermine our long-term health. Examples of common parasites are intestinal worms and protozoa. Malaria and Giardia are protozoa. These can be eliminated with wormwood (Arthemesia absinthium), best combined with the other Hulda Clark herbs ground cloves and tincture of green hulls of black walnut.
You may put the ground wormwood into empty gelatin capsules size 00. Start with 1 capsule before supper and increase by 1 capsule per day to 7 capsules on the 7th day and for 2 more days, then continue for several more weeks taking 3 capsules twice a day. Alternatively, you may take it just with a spoon and wash it down, 1 rounded teaspoon is equivalent to about 7 capsules, half a teaspoonful to 3 capsules. However, if the herb is powdered instead of finely crumbled, then use only half of the stated measures. The recommended maximum dose of 7 capsules or 1 teaspoon is about 2g in weight.
You may take 4 drops of tincture of Black Walnut 4 x in liquid during the first day. If this is all right, take 4 x 8 drops the next day, then 4 x 12 drops, 4 x 16 drops and on the 5th day 4 x 20 drops. Then continue taking 20 drops once a day for several weeks.
The cloves should be reasonably freshly ground and refrigerated. Take 1 capsule 3 x before meals on the 1st day, 3 x 2 capsules on the 2nd day and after that 3 x 3 capsules until day 10. Finally take 3 capsules only once a day for several weeks.
If you want to take ground cloves directly on a teaspoon use half a level teaspoon instead of 3 capsules and immediately wash down with plenty of liquid. If you have a sensitive stomach you may proceed much more slowly increasing either one of these remedies.
During any parasite or Candida cure have a high intake of water or diluted liquids to flush out toxic residues. These Hulda Clark parasite herbs are now available from most health food shops. If you cannot obtain the other herbs then use just wormwood. To eliminate Candida wormwood needs to be taken for a longer time than for other parasites. The wormwood or parasite cure should be repeated if Candida symptoms reemerge or after 6 months and later once or twice a year.
If you have reason to believe that the wormwood has not eliminated all Candida in the blood or internal tissues or you are not able to take it for other reasons, then you may take a course of Lugol's solution. That is how Dr Orian Truss originally cured his patients.
Lugol's solution is an internal iodine solution designed to eliminate Candida and possibly viruses and other microbes from the bloodstream. Obtain 100ml of Lugol's solution, also labeled Aqueous Iodine Oral Solution B.P., from a chemist. Take a test drop in liquid other then just water to make it taste less strong. If this does not cause an allergic reaction, continue to take 4 x 6 drops daily in liquid or mixed with food, but not together with vitamins A, C, E, grape seed extract or cysteine. Iodine is an oxidant and it is best to reduce the intake of antioxidants while using it.
If the blood was contaminated, then you may initially experience a die-off reaction of the Candida, causing weakness and possibly headache or nausea. If this happens cut temporarily back on the amount of Lugol's solution and drink plenty of water and diluted teas or juices. Continue for 3 weeks, but interrupt if you develop a serious reaction. Do not take the iodine for more than 3 weeks as that interferes with thyroid activity. If necessary repeat the course after several months.
Some antifungal remedies are propolis, golden seal, pau d'arco, and the oils of tea-tree, neem tree, cinnamon, eucalyptus, mustard and thyme. Also chewing some fresh or dried neem leaves for several weeks is good. Avoid sweet foods, yeast, molds and, initially, fruit. For further information see also "Intestinal Sanitation" in Part 6 of Healing Foods.
Finally, in addition to Wormwood or Lugol's solution and possibly as an alternative, you may use a Beck-type blood purifier or zapper to eliminate Candida and other fungi and infectious agents from the blood, for details see the article Electronic Zapper & Magnetic Pulser. Furthermore, the magnetic pulser may help to sanitize pockets of Candida infestations inside the mouth, vagina or underneath affected skin areas.
Don't let the antibiotic syndrome creep up on you. Always try natural alternatives in preference to antibiotics, but when they are absolutely necessary, supplement your treatment with the steps outlined above.