EBV: The Gut Inflammation Connection

The Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) and consequently full blown mononucleosis (mono) can be Kryptonite for even the strongest superheroes. A happy, productive person can turn into a shell of their previous self who hibernates as their liver, spleen, lymph nodes, and possibly brain swell.

I’ll never forget Jan 1st, 2014. It was the day the EBV took over my body and turned into an intense case of mono. My level of fatigue was so severe that walking ten feet from the couch I was laying on to the bathroom was a daunting feat. My body was under so much physical stress that any additional mental stress would trigger seizures. My adrenals were depleted. My motivation to do anything was completely gone. I was in enormous amounts of pain. I was unable to work. At times speaking or standing was more than I could bare.

I had tested positive for EBV two years before I developed any symptoms. I wondered what caused this virus to activate and how could I reduce the symptoms so I could return to living my beautiful life. I initially looked to medical literature for answers, which was incomplete at best. This is what I read.

What causes Mono? EBV.

This answer is incomplete. It does explain why I was able to be infected with EBV without mono symptoms. It does not explain what activated the virus. This answer essentially claims they have no idea what causes mono.

What is the treatment for Mono? There is no treatment available. Drink fluids, get plenty of rest, and avoid contact sports to prevent the Spleen from rupturing.

Without understanding the cause, it is impossible to recommend an effective treatment. Avoidance is not the answer. Much more can be done, but we will get to that later.

How long does Mono last? The virus has an incubation period of 4-6 weeks. Once the body builds up antibodies, then it is immune and the illness will not return.

FALSE. The time period of mono varies from person to person and can return. My first bout of mono lasted four weeks, but I fought in on and off for over a year. If I took one wrong move, then mono would return. In fact, I’ve been battling mono this past week, which inspired me to further research the cause of EBV activation.

To begin to understand the cause of EBV activation, we have to look from a perspective that views viruses as symbiotic organisms, not demons. According to Antoine Béchamp’s Pleomorphism Theory, germs are the result, not the cause of disease. An unhealthy terrain creates a breeding ground for viruses and bacteria. In fact, virus activation is the most effective method for the body to overcome a toxicity crisis. They initiate a strong immune response that cleans up dying tissue, increases blood flow, and provides nutrients to the site of toxicity thereby restoring it back to health. Therefore, a negative change in terrain can cause a dormant virus to become active.

The Missing Gut Inflammation Connection

As soon as my EBV symptoms returned this week, I began to dissect my every move. What changes had occurred in the terrain of my body to allow this virus to reactivate? My diet, activity level, and sleep had remained consistent. However, I had been passing a large amount of rope worms after liver flushing and daily coffee enemas. Rope worms are extremely toxic. The colon becomes inflamed as they pass. I experience severe bloating, liver congestion, fatigue, and heavy metal poisoning. As soon as the rope worms are flushed out of the colon with an enema, the gut inflammation significantly decreases and my EBV symptoms disappear. Was I on to something? Was severe gut inflammation the cause of EBV activation? I looked to scientific research for evidence to see whether or not my theory had a valid basis. Bingo!

A study performed at the University of Rochester Medical Center analyzed and compared the amount of EBV DNA in the mucosal lining of health individuals to that of individuals with various bowel diseases. Here is what they found.

“RESULTS: EBV DNA was essentially undetectable in normal gastric mucosa but was present in 46% of gastritis lesions, 44% of normal colonic mucosa, 55% of Crohn’s disease, and 64% of ulcerative colitis samples. Levels of EBV DNA exceeded what would be expected based on the numbers of B lymphocytes in inflamed tissues, suggesting that EBV is preferentially localized to inflammatory gastrointestinal lesions.” (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/22410851/)

Essentially, EBV prefers to activate in lesions of the stomach and intestines. When there are lesions in the stomach and intestines, unwanted particles pass through the gut lining into the bloodstream. This can create blood toxicity and therefore incite a systematic viral infection associated with inflammation in the lymph system, also known as mono.

Treating EBV/Mono

Since gastrointestinal lesions may be at the core of EBV infections, one must become a detective and determine what is causing their lesions. Often times, parasites, heavy metals, and a poor diet can cause gastrointestinal lesions. Therefore, it is important to eat a clean, whole-food diet, gentle exercise, drink plenty of water, rest when possible, and detox the body.

I recommend starting with soft, easy to digest foods that promote gut healing. Bananas are soft, easy to digest, and are a great pre-biotic, which feeds the good gut bacteria and promotes gut balance. Cooking anti-inflammatory vegetables increases nutrient availability and absorption while reducing gut irritation. This is not the time to load up on raw vegetables or fiber-rich grains. Pro-inflammatory foods, such as grains containing gluten, dairy, meat, nightshades, refined sugar, and alcohol should be avoided. Coconut oil is particularly helpful as it is anti-viral, antimicrobial, and full of medium length chain saturated fatty acids that promote energy and healing. Turmeric and cinnamon should generously added to meals as they greatly reduce inflammation. Anti-parasitic herbs, such as clove, may also be helpful. Taking chlorella will help bind heavy metals and reduce gastrointestinal irritation.

If you can muster up the energy, exercise at a level your body can tolerate. This will help get the lymph flowing, reduce pain and dehydration, and boost the immune system. Intense exercise should be avoided, since the adrenals are already over-taxed over-training will reduce your body’s energy reserve for healing purposes. Yoga, rebounding, and DIY pressure point deep tissue massage with a tennis ball are great to promote blood circulation, reduce pain, and decrease fatigue.

If you are too weak to exercise, then I recommend a warm Epsom salt bath or sauna therapy. These detox methods will promote blood circulation, get the lymph flowing, and reduce organ swelling without the exertion required by exercise. When my symptoms became unbearable, I immediately soaked in a warm Epsom salt bath and drank lots of water to stay hydrated. Coffee enemas are another great detox method, especially if you have a parasitic infection. They flush out parasites and worms that may be causing gastrointestinal inflammation and lesions while healing the swollen liver. During a coffee enema, intracellular glutathione increases 500-700%. Glutathione is the body’s most powerful anti-oxidant, so inflammation decreases dramatically.

Incorporating the previously mentioned lifestyle factors will speed up the healing process, thereby reducing the length and severity of EBV infections and mono. With a greater understanding of the purpose and cause of infections, we no longer need to fear them. We should view the symptoms as a reminder to love ourselves by incorporating healthy lifestyle changes.

Say “No!” to Antibiotics

We can only be victims of conventional medicine if we give doctors control over the decision-making process. Whenever I go to a doctor’s visit, I always inform the doctor that they do not have permission to give me prescription antibiotics. After the shock wears off of his or her face, they start to ask what if questions, and my response is always the same. Regardless of the medical issue at hand, I refuse to ingest antibiotics. This stance may appear foolish and short-sighted to those who prescribe or take antibiotics on a regular basis. But I assure, it is not.

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with Lyme (or any other infection), then I implore you to thoroughly research the negative biological effects of prescription antibiotics and testimonials of other Lyme patients who have taken that treatment path. Before I dive into scientific theory, I would like to share my story.

My Experience with Antibiotics

It was my junior year of college, and I had been fighting a severe sinus infection. It was an infection that started off as the most painful sore throat and turned into a persistent upper respiratory infection. I was under the impression that the infection could not be viral and must be bacterial, since it had been persistent for a month. I setup a doctor’s office, explained my situation, and was prescribed Amoxicillin. Like many others, I had taken antibiotics before and never experienced any noticeable issues, so I assumed this was the safest route back to health. I could not have been more wrong.

Two hours after swallowing the first dose of Amoxicillin, my life changed forever. I was sitting in a room working on homework, and all of a sudden I was hit with an intense feeling of fear. My external environment was calm, but my internal environment had switched into full panic mode. My core muscles began to involuntarily contract and release. I was shaking, twitching, and convulsing as I laid on the floor. Unsure of what was going on, I decided to lay down in bed and wait for the episode to pass. The periodic convulsions persisted, so I headed to the emergency room two hours later.

Overtime, my health deteriorated further. I continued to experience partial seizures. I developed food, chemical, and environmental sensitivities. I began fighting a range of viral and bacterial infections, and was eventually diagnosed with Lyme Disease. My poor gut health lead to a systematic illness that affected every organ and cell in my body. I can only imagine the route my life would have taken if I had simply refused to take Amoxicillin. However, my journey is not in vain. It has inspired me to question treatment methods of conventional medicine and search for a deeper understanding of preventing and healing chronic illness.


The War on Infection

In the mid to late 19th Century, scientists were debating the origin and purpose of germs. Louis Pasteur became known as the father of The Germ Theory. His interpretation of experimental research led him and his followers to believe that bacteria and viruses originate in the environment and are the root cause of disease. Therefore, by killing germs, we can successfully treat disease.

On the other hand, Pasteur’s rival, Antoine Béchamp, created the pleomorphic theory from his own experiments and research. His theory suggests that germs originate from microzyma, organisms that live within the human body (and other organisms) where they usually remain quiescent and harmless. When the body is threatened by a potentially harmful matter and unhealthy terrain, the microzyma morph into bacteria and viruses. The purpose of these germs is to remove the harmful matter, dead cells, and toxins. Therefore, germs are the result of disease, not the cause. We can successfully treat disease by cleaning up the harmful matter, dead cells, and toxins.

On his deathbed, Pasteur admitted that the cause of disease is the terrain, not the germs. If you read about Pasteur’s experimental procedures, then you will find that his research was invalid and unscientific: he injected healthy animals with blood from diseased animals merely demonstrating that you can induce disease in healthy tissue by poisoning the blood with dead cells. For the purpose of this article, we will entertain the idea that Béchamp’s stance holds more truth than Pasteur’s. See the links below for more information on this debate.

Unhealthy Terrain

What determines an unhealthy terrain? The following four factors are the root cause of all disease.

1. Acidic pH
2. Positive electric/magnetic charge
3. Presence of poisons and toxins
4. Nutritional deficiencies

Please Note: Killing off bacteria does not address any of these factors. In fact, killing the bacteria is equivalent to firing an obnoxious, loud spoken maid whose responsibility is to clean your house. When she is gone, you no longer suffer the pain of listening to her ramblings, but your house remains dirty and will gather filth over time.

Result of Antibiotics Use in Lyme Patients

There is a huge controversy surrounding the use of antibiotic as treatment for Lyme Disease. Most medical professionals are taught to prescribe one dose of antibiotics. However, this method consistently fails Chronic Lyme patients who have been sick for an extended period of time. They deal with the toxic effects of killing off the bacteria and perhaps receive temporary symptom relief due to a reduction in inflammation, but the infection always reappears with a vengeance. Desperate, Chronic Lyme patients look for a doctor who will prescribe them multiple rounds of antibiotics over an extended period of time. Alone, this method provides temporary symptom reduction, but always leads to a relapse. Lyme patients who choose the antibiotic treatment path are merely managing symptoms while damaging not only their gut, but also their entire body.

Antibiotics kill the good bacteria in the gut, whose responsibility is to breakdown undigested food. When the good bacteria die, the ability to digest food decreases and intestinal fungus, such as Candida, begins to proliferate. The fungus has the ability to poke holes through the intestinal lining of the gut wall with their tendrils, which leads to a syndrome called leaky gut. At this point, undigested food travels through the damaged gut wall into the blood stream and triggers the immune system to produce phagocytes to break down the food. This puts a strain on the immune system, liver, and kidneys. When the liver and kidneys become overwhelmed, the toxins may circulate and penetrate the blood brain barrier leading to neurological symptoms. In an attempt to clean up the toxic mess, multiple infections simultaneously activate.

Lyme patients may suffer from food, chemical and environmental sensitivities, chronic systematic inflammation, multiple organ dysfunction, decline in cognitive function, anxiety, fear, chronic fatigue, and much more.

Herbal Alternatives for Prescription Antibiotics

To stop the symptom management disease proliferation cycle, it is important to wean off all medications, embrace healing reactions, and focus on nutrition and cleansing methods. There are herbal alternatives that will help decrease the presence of infections by supporting the healing process without killing off the good bacteria in the gut.

Here is a short list of herbal antimicrobials that I have had success using.

• Garlic
• Oregano Oil
• Wormwood
• Clove
• Cinnamon
• Echinacea
• Cat’s Claw
• Cranberry
• Ginger
• Licorice Root
• Olive Leaf
• Thyme
• Cayenne

This is not meant to be a comprehensive list, but rather reassurance that there is an alternative herbal treatment path that is more effective than prescription antibiotics. By replacing antibiotics with herbs, you are replacing poison with nutrition, thereby replacing death with life.

Lyme Patient Testimonials

“A wise man learns from the mistakes of others, a fool by his own.” –Latin Proverb.

If there is still doubt in your mind about which treatment path to choose, then I encourage you to read Lyme patient testimonials. Look for the long-term results. Who had success and claims to have cured the incurable? Who is convinced Lyme disease is a lifelong battle with inevitable relapses? What approach did they take? Learn from their mistakes and successes as you create your own path.

Resources and Suggested Readings