and the ANTIBIOTIC SYNDROME
By Walter Last
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 gastro-intestinal 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 colonised 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 dam ages 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 potentized 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-potentized 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 culprits are, 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 has also 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 diarrhoea and his health deteriorated. Truss had seen before how antibiotics cause diarrhoea. 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 auto-immune 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.
The Spit Test
A simple Saliva Test for Candida is as follows:
Immediately after rising before you eat or drink anything fill a clear glass with water at room temperature. Spit some saliva into the glass of water. Then check from time to time for up to an hour to see what happens. If Candida is present, you will see one of three things, or a combination of these.
1. There may be strings like legs extending down into the water from the saliva floating on top
2. Cloudy saliva will accumulate at the bottom of the glass
3. Cloudy bits will remain suspended in the water.
The quicker and stronger the strings grow and the sooner the saliva sinks, the more Candida is in the sample. If there are no strings and the saliva is still floating after one hour, you probably do not have systemic Candida but may still have a localized problem in the intestines, the skin or the vagina, and you may still have dysbiosis and infestations of other pathogenic microbes.
Even after systemic Candidiasis has been eliminated the spit test may still remain positive because of fungi living within the mucous membranes of the mouth which may then regrow in the night. This may be eliminated by repeatedly swishing MMS for several minutes in the mouth before swallowing it. Alternatively you may try swishing Lugol's before swallowing, or diluted hydrogen peroxide or diluted sodium bicarbonate, the last two best before going to bed.
Curing the 'Antibiotic Syndrome'
The main treatment for the 'antibiotic syndrome' is sanitation of the gastro-intestinal 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 anti-microbial remedies to avoid or minimise unpleasant side effects. An Epsom salt or magnesium chloride flush may contain one tablespoon of magnesium 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. Refrigerate the water to make it taste less bitter.
Add a crushed clove of garlic to the flush to reduce the microbial overgrowth. If garlic cannot be used then several drops of Lugol’s solution or a teaspoon of bicarbonate, or up to two teaspoons of three per cent hydrogen peroxide may be added instead. You can take another glass of water after the magnesium salt to wash down the bitter aftertaste.
The flush will carry most of the dead microbes and their toxins out of the body and minimise any unpleasant reactions. However, if the flush should not be sufficient to produce a strong bowel movement within two to three hours and you start feeling unwell, then another spoonful of magnesium salt may be taken. If overweight and with constipation you may take already 2 tablespoons to start with.
Other laxatives that may be used for a flush are Glauber Salz or sodium sulphate (sulfate), castor oil or senna. You may need to experiment with your chosen laxative to find the right amount to take with the garlic so that it is effective within a few hours.
Psyllium is excellent and most recommend for long-term use. If you are not overweight or constipated you may start cleansing this way instead of using magnesium salt. Psyllium is especially effective for removing endotoxins from the intestines and reducing allergic and autoimmune reactions.
In a large glass of water add a teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate and a heaped teaspoon of psyllium hulls, stir and drink immediately followed by another glass of water. Until you start with the systemic antimicrobial therapy add chopped garlic or another antimicrobial to the psyllium drink but continue adding a teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate as long as there are signs of pain, inflammation, Candida or overacidity. If you suspect intestinal parasites also add MMS or Lugol’s solution or wormwood or essential oils to the psyllium.
With Candida overgrowth any sexual partner should also use antimicrobial therapy. Most effective for vaginal thrush is inserting a capsule filled with borax at bedtime for up to two weeks. Some individuals are highly sensitive and with multiple allergies. In this case it may be necessary to proceed very slowly, remain on a stable low-allergy diet, use anti-inflammatory measures, such as slippery elm powder before meals and ginger with meals, and introduce probiotics, lactic acid fermented food and anti-microbials only very gradually.
For sensitive individuals it is most helpful to alkalize the body. Sodium bicarbonate is a strong fungicide and potassium bicarbonate is even stronger. Half to one teaspoon of bicarbonate in a glass of water taken on an empty stomach or 2-3 hours after meals can be used several times daily to sanitize the intestinal tract and alkalize the lymphatic system.
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 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 several high-potency capsules. High-potency cultures should contain 10 Billion (or more) live bacteria per gram or per capsule.
The medium-chain saturated fatty acids in coconut oil are potent antimicrobial agents, effective against fungi, viruses and many bacteria. The most effective fatty acids are caprylic acid (with 8 carbon atoms), capric acid (10 carbon atoms) and lauric acid (12 carbon). They appear to work by causing microbial cell walls to disintegrate.
Coconut oil appears to be effective within days. With Candida take initially 4 tablespoons of coconut oil spread out during the day, and after improvement you may reduce this to 2 tablespoons for several more weeks. This seems to be effective against systemic as well as localised infestations, including those of the genitals. However, it is advisable to apply coconut oil topically as well.
The best commercial product is cold-pressed or virgin coconut oil. However, this has been heat-stabilised to destroy lipase. Therefore, my preference is self-made raw coconut cream or milk: press coconut pieces through a low-speed juicer, or alternatively blend with water, strain and refrigerate.
For topical applications and for those with fat malabsorption the lipase-rich coconut milk can be expected to be much more effective than heated coconut oil with only a very low concentration of free fatty acids. Alternatively, you may use lipase supplements with coconut oil.
Iodine is one of the best remedy to eliminate systemic yeast infections. It is commonly used as Lugol's solution with 10% of potassium iodide and 5% iodine, which is the same as 10 grams of potassium iodide and 5 grams of elemental iodine per 100 ml. Each drop contains about 6.5 mg of iodine/iodide. While it contains 10% of total iodine as elemental iodine and iodide, commonly it is called a 5% iodine solution. Other names for Lugol’s solution are Aqueous Iodine Oral Solution BP or Strong Iodine Solution USP (both of which contain 130 mg iodine /iodide per ml). Iodine Topical Solution (USP) contains 2% iodine and 2.4% potassium iodide.
Presently 5% Lugol's solution, and all iodine solutions containing more than 2.2% elemental iodine are no longer available in the US as they may be used in the illicit production of methamphetamine. However, up to one fluid ounce (30 ml) of Lugol's solution is exempt from this regulation. Standard Lugol's solution is still available in
Canada and Mexico, it is very difficult to obtain in the EU, and under strong attack in Australia.
If you buy 2% iodine solution take 2.5 times more than the amount recommended for the standard 5% Lugol’s solution. In the
US you may also buy Iodoral tablets, each standard tablet with the equivalent of 2 drops of 5% Lugo’s solution. I do not recommend pharmaceutical types of iodine dissolved in alcohol or other solvents as they often cause side-effects. Always read the label and compare the iodine content with the iodine in regular Lugol’s solution.
To test for a reaction in case of an overactive thyroid or use of stimulant drugs take a drop of iodine in liquid other than just water. If there is no reaction, gradually increase to taking 10 drops 3 times daily in liquid or mixed with food. Do not take the iodine directly with antioxidants but it is fine to have antioxidants five or more minutes later during a meal. You may use more or less iodine according to body weight. I believe that a 3-week course adjusted for body weight is generally safe for children. However, it may not be suitable if the thyroid is overactive or with goitre; with these conditions the amount of iodine may need to be increased very slowly. Also see Iodine: Bring Back the Universal Nutrient Medicine.
Follow up the Lugol's iodine treatment with MMS and other fungicides as explained in The Ultimate Cleanse. You can obtain Lugol’s solution and MMS from www.strideintohealth.com. Bicarbonate solution is very effective in direct contact such as for rinsing out the mouth, sinuses or vagina or as packs over sites of fungal infection and tumours.
Some other antifungal remedies are pau d'arco, propolis, wormwood, borax, kerosene, gum turpentine, and the oils of tea-tree, neem tree, cinnamon, eucalyptus, mustard, oregana and thyme. Pau d’arco, also called taheebo or lapacho, has the advantage of tasting reasonably pleasant. Wormwood may be used if you want to eliminate fungi and parasites at the same time, for details see The Ultimate Cleanse.
Many with Candidiasis have benefited from using inulin, a non-digestible polysaccharide, which helps to feed the beneficial intestinal bacteria, especially in the colon. It is present in
artichokes, chicory roots and dandelion roots, and may be sold as a white powder, see http://members.shaw.ca/duncancrow/inulin_prebiotic_probiotic.html. Jerusalem
In addition 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 sanitise pockets of Candida infestations inside the mouth, vagina or underneath affected skin areas.
Some individuals have found urine therapy effective against Candida, parasites, intestinal inflammations and Leaky Gut Syndrome; for details see Urine & Urea Therapy.
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 a fungicide and probiotics.
For more detailed instructions to treat Candida, parasites, autoimmune diseases, intestinal inflammatory diseases and “Leaky Guts Syndrome” see OVERCOMING CANDIDA.