Saturday, December 15, 2012


Last May I started the Samento-Banderol protocol for Lyme disease. According to recent research, these taking these two herbs in combination is extremely effective at killing off “dormant Lyme,” meaning that last little bit of Lyme bacteria that’s so good at escaping the antibiotics. These two herbs are so effective, they’re actually better, in lab tests, than antibiotics are at killing off Lyme in a biofilm. (And the biofilm is part of what makes Lyme such a tough enemy.)

One of the early signs of effective Lyme antidotes is the Herxheimer reaction, which is when your symptoms of disease increase as the medication kills Lyme and floods your body with toxins from dead bacteria. (Here's a beautiful illustration of the Samento plant!)

Judging solely by the Herxheimer reaction I had when I started Samento and Banderol, they have to be just as good or better than antibiotics. I have also been deliberately going for as big a Herxheimer reaction as I could, based on a theory that this is the best way to kick an entrenched case of Lyme. Instead of increasing my Samento and Banderol liquid herbs at the recommended rate of one drop every other day, I increased by two per day. By July I was on the full dose, and by August the big “Herx” reactions seemed behind me. So far, so good.

Enter my naturopath Nesreen. When I told her about the maximum Herx theory, she agreed. “You have to feel worse before you feel better,” she said. She also admitted it’s a tough sell. She’s lost patients who simply won’t, or can’t, go through the healing-by-fire method.

(And I realize that Herxing on Lyme meds is in fact a luxury in our screwed-up world. Try doing that while taking care of kids, holding down a job, or keeping up with homework assignments. Until our society recognizes Lyme for what it is and your friends and family rally round with casseroles and babysitting and the world at large accepts that you cant keep up with your job or your school work, the way it would if you had any number of other serious illnesses, turning the volume up to eleven on your Lyme symptoms—so you can actually get over this disease—will remain a luxury.)

At Nesreen’s suggestion, I added the herb Teasel and this has cranked up the herx even more. More on that in an upcoming post!

When I lived in Mexico these dried Samento pods (una de gato) were for sale on the street as amulets. They were said to ward off evil, and I actually wore one around my neck for some time. I'd love to get another but they seem hard to come by in the States.

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