A Healing Crisis, or, the "Die-Off"
Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction, or, Lucio's Phenomena
Getting rid of mutated Candida and restoring the proper balance of healthy flora within one's digestive system is no easy task. It takes a multifaceted approach to overcome the yeast, promote healthy microorganisms, and watching one's diet to prevent the yeast from feeding on excessive sugar.
The medium chain fatty acids in coconut oil provide nutritional support to overcome the yeast, but if this happens too quickly it can cause a “die-off” effect that is referred to as a Herxheimer reaction, which is the result of the rapid killing of microorganisms and absorption of large quantities of yeast toxins, cell particles, and antigens.
Mutated Candida produces 79 toxins according to Vitamin Research Products Inc journal (3/99Vol.13, #3). Sugar activates candida metabolism and some of its by-products are neurotoxins such as formaldehyde, alcohol and acetlyaldehyde. One's nervous system can become confused during candida infestation due to specific neurotoxins. Candida converts the element mercury to methyl mercury which is 100 times more toxic. Mercury chelation might deliver more mercury to the system temporarily allowing the candida-methyl mercury conversion. Mercury is an antibacterial, yet, in concentrations lower than fatal to humans, bacteria are often encouraged. Your symptoms may get worse before they improve.
The Herxheimer reaction was first described by an Austrian dermatologist Jarisch Adolf Herxheimer working in Vienna and Innsbruck in 1895 and shortly after this, confirmed by his brother Karl Herxheimer also a dermatologist working in Frankfort.
It is a phenomena that results when there is an intensification of the disease symptoms and often an expansion of similar symptoms to other places all of a temporary nature, after which the patient is improved or well. Often it appears to some as if they have the flu. The symptoms of the Herxheimer Reaction can be most severe. Usually die off lasts only a few hours, though it can last several days, and may, in severe cases, be maintained for weeks. These symptoms can discourage not only the ill person, but also the doctor, therapist, or anyone who is in close relationship to the patient.
The brothers were involved in treating syphilitics. They observed that skin lesions they treated with very toxic heavy metals became larger and inflamed before lessening and healing. They also found that those cases that responded in this most violent manner healed the best and fastest. A patient could be quite ill for 2-3 days after which the syphilitic lesions resolved.
The Jarisch-Herxheimer reaction (referred to as "Herx" often) is believed to be a reaction caused by organisms (bacteria) dying off and releasing toxins into the body faster than the body may comfortably handle it. It was originally observed in patients with syphilis who received mercury treatment.
Some immune system compromised or distracted persons will have moderate to severe herxheimer effects from antibiotics that will usually have no effects on normal healthier individuals. It seems to occur when injured or dead bacteria release their products into blood and tissues, provoking a sudden and exaggerated inflammatory response - thus the response may be connected to a specific organism being killed off. Many non-antibiotic treatments (glutathione - whey products ) may also produce a herxheimer effect -- whether it is bacteria die off or simply toxin mobilization.
The most common ones include:
- swollen glands,
- constipation or diarrhea,
- increased joint or muscle pain,
- elevated heart rate,
- chills, cold extremities,
- itching, scratching, nail biting,
- unusual perspiration,
- fever (usually low grade),
- hypotension (low blood pressure),
- Itching, hives and rash (sometimes assumed to be an allergic reaction)
Two common sources: decreasing the blood flow, which allows the toxins to accumulate, or, increasing the die off of parasites.
- anxiety and worry,
- hormonal imbalances,
- enzymes, bromelain, pancreatin, etc.,
- clotting agents, heavy foods,
- excessive exercise, tiredness,
- fatigue, exhaustion,
- cold temperatures,
- air pollution,
- chronic illnesses,
- high doses of vitamins,
- some forms of chelation treatments
Two common strategies: improving the blood flow to clear the toxins faster (see vascular constriction), or, neutralizing the toxins (or both).
- relaxation techniques,
- Enemas, Colemas, Colonics,
- increase in blood thinning supplements,
- Lemon/Olive Oil liver/gall bladder cleanse,
- 2 Tbsp Lemon Juice (Organic) or 1/2 lemon rind),
- 1 Tbsp cold pressed Extra Virgin Olive Oil,
- flavanoids (widens blood vessels),
- hydrogen peroxide intravenous,
- aerobic oxygen supplementation,
- lymphatic massage,
- bentonite clay,
- charcoal tablets,
- diatomaceous earth,
- pain medication,
- muscle relaxers,
- hot baths / hot tub,
- steam bath or dry sauna,
- infrared Hot House treatment,
- a cleansing bath: add 1 cup salt, 1 cup soda, 1 cup epsom salts, 1 cup aloe vera, to a hot bath, remain in and keep hot for about 1-1/2 hours all the while consuming about 2 quarts of warm water.
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