Wisdom Magazine's Monthly Webzine Skip Navigation Links
Wisdom Magazine is also one of the country's largest free holistic publications with 150,000 copies printed bi-monthly in three regional print editions. Wisdom is dedicated to opening people's hearts and minds to the philosophies, products and services of the new millennium.
Home  About  This Month's Articles  Calendar of Events  Classified Listings  Holistic Resource Directory
 Educational Programs  Sacred Journeys & Retreats  Reiki Healing
 Article Archives  What's New in Books, CD's & DVD's  Wisdom Marketplace
 Where to Find Wisdom Near You  Subscriptions  Web Partner Links
 Advertising Information  Contact Us
Denali Institute of Northern Traditions
Miriam Smith
Margaret Ann Lembo
Lindsey Arsenault
Vicki Monroe
Educational Programs
Vibes Up
Light Healing
Lindsey Arsenault
Alternatives For Healing

Infectious Parties: Bacteria, Candida, Epstein Barr, Lyme, Parasites and Others

by Michael Cheikin, MD

Holistic practitioners are often sought to evaluate and treat various infectious diseases. These include chronic Lyme, Candida/yeast, SIBO (Small Intestinal Bowel Overgrowth), Epstein Barr virus and parasites, such as Blastocystis.  Cycles of improvement and illness support the hypothesis that there is an organism lurking somewhere in the gut, sinuses, brain, gallbladder, sexual organs, skin, thyroid gland, or virtually any place in the body.

Sometimes all symptoms and experi-ences are explained by this, a single critter. Depending upon the experience of the practitioner and the patient, the belief in a single organism takes on the fervor of a religion or political party.  However, usually there is a complex relationship between our ecology, our gut and our immune system. 

What Is an Infection?
“Infection”, by definition, means that there is an alteration of physiology for the worse.  

Ultimately, infections are not caused by an organism, because if that was true we all would be infected all the time.  Therefore, what an infection actually represents is a faltering of the immune system.Which organism is able to penetrate our defense is dependent upon numerous factors. In fact, when a particular critter is found, let’s say in a bladder or sinus infection, what is not seen is the team of other players that have enabled that one to get over the wall of defense. Eradicating or weakening that winner with medications or other agents might give the immune system a chance to mount its defense. However, sometimes the ensuing ecological imbalance is setting the stage for the next invasion by the same or different creature.

Stealth Infections, Quorums and Biofilms
Certain organisms, such as Lyme, can change their shape, or shed their outer coat (“cell wall deficient”), rendering them invisible to the immune system. Such “stealth” infections can still wreak havoc. When a single organism is coming over the wall, what we don’t see is that it’s standing on the shoulders of others. This cooperation between organisms can explain some chronic and recurrent infections and related inflammatory conditions.

This is, in part, why it is common to get a bacterial infection following a virus, or a yeast infection following bacteria, especially if certain antibiotics are used. Lyme is notorious for “co-infections” with other organisms.
All cells export molecules into their environment. These molecules are used for certain functions, such as communication and defense. Some of these molecules are designed to inactivate the immune system, or act as a decoy.

Certain molecules, when detected by other cells of the same or other species, can signal a “quorum” or “critical mass” of soldiers. In response, these organisms, working in a community, build a “biofilm”, a structure similar to a coral reef, multi-layered blanket, or shopping mall. This structure defends and supports its inhabitants.

  Biofilms can make an organism such as Candida up to 1000 times more resistant to an antibiotic or the immune system. On the other hand, combining antibiotics with anti-biofilm agents can greatly increase the potency of such remedies. Biofilms exist on teeth, in the stomach lining, in the gut, bladder, sexual organs, sinuses, and other places. They often occur when there is an interface of two surfaces, including those caused by the growing list of implants.

Intracellular and Extracellular Invaders 
Organisms such as yeasts and parasites are as large as, or larger than, our human cells, so they remain outside our cells. Other agents, such as viruses, are smaller than our cell’s smallest parts, and work by invading the cell, interlacing their biologic molecules into the cell, disarming the cell’s defense.  They then use the cell’s own machinery to replicate and then spread to other cells. It is likely that there is coordination between the external and internal invasions, as we see when Shingles activates after an infection or other stressor. 

Microbiome, Dysbiosis & Leaky Gut
 The totality of organisms living in us and on us is called the “microbiome”. Bacteria, viruses, yeasts and even parasites are all part of this community. While we are made of approximately 10 trillion cells, we host 100 trillion. In other words, on a cellular basis, we are only 10%! Up to 20% of the protein of non-human origin in our blood is from viral origins. Up to 60% of our immune system resides in our intestines, where we maintain a battalion or farm of organisms that teach and support our immune system when working well. When the ecology is imbalanced, called “dysbiosis”, this damages our gut lining, called “leaky gut syndrome”, which then confuses and suppresses the immune system.  

Evaluation and Treatment
When an “infection” manifests, it is not a beginning, it is the last straw in a series of events involving our immune system that can go back days, weeks, years, decades, or even precede our conception. Therefore, the illusion that we can accurately evaluate our ecology when faced with a chronic illness is unlikely. Our technology can only detect two things—the organisms themselves, or our body’s response to those organisms. However, if they can go stealth and/or suppress the immune system, such testing will result in a “false negative”. This is when holistic practitioners are sought. An ecological approach requires re-balancing of a dysfunctional biome community, usually with indirect means, such as diet, supplements, reductions or eliminations of certain toxic substances including foods and electromagnetic radiation, use of probiotics,  pre-biotics, and basic lifestyle factors such as good sleep, movement, love and stress reduction.

1.This educational material may not be used to influence medical care without supervision by a licensed practitioner.
2.These contents are ©2016 by Michael Cheikin MD and may not be reproduced in any form without express written permission.
3.Dr. Cheikin’s website has related articles such as “Infectious Organized Crime,” Leaky Gut Syndrome,” “Stealth Infections” and others.

Michael Cheikin MD is a holistic physician, Board Certified in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (“Physiatry”), Pain Management, Spinal Cord Medicine and Electrodiagnostic Medicine and licensed in Medical Acupuncture. Dr. Cheikin has extensively studied yoga, diet and metabolism, Ayurvedic, Chinese and energy medicine and other alternative modalities for over 30 years. He specializes in obscure, chronic and severe problems that have not responded satisfactorily to other methods of healing. www.cheikin.com             

Add Comment

Article Archives  This Month's Articles  Click Here for more articles by Michael Cheikin, MD
Vicki Monroe
Lindsey Arsenault
Light Healing
Miriam Smith
Kiros Book
Alternatives For Healing
Lindsey Arsenault
Educational Programs
Denali Institute
Margaret Ann Lembo

Call Us Toll Free: 888-577-8091 or  |  Email Us  | About Us  | Privacy Policy  | Site Map  | © 2016 Wisdom Magazine