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leaky gut / herbal SIBO treatment experiment

Discussion in 'The Gut: De Meirleir & Maes; H2S; Leaky Gut' started by datura, Apr 12, 2018.

  1. datura

    datura

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    I'm trying to heal leaky gut and potentially SIBO which I think are at the root of my mast cell issues. I've developed a lot of food sensitivities in the last several months.

    For the last couple months, I've been 'working' on leaky gut --
    - Replacing NSAIDS w/ turmeric
    - Eliminating wheat, dairy, high-histamine foods. Eating a 'clean' diet.
    - Supporting digestion + HCl production w/ digestive enzymes, lemon juice (sometimes bitters), DGL licorice + quercetin before meals, probiotics

    I can't take L-glutamine or drink bone broth because of glutamate sensitivity.

    I'm thinking of starting an herbal protocol for SIBO but my budget is limited (can't try Dysbiocide, etc.). My plan so far is to continue the list above, and for 4 weeks take:

    Garlic w/ 4mg allicin, 1 softgel 3x daily
    Solaray Berberine complex, 1 capsule 2x daily
    475mg neem leaf, 2 capsules 3x daily


    Does this look like it will do the trick? Is the dosing optimal (too long, too short), and should I start slower instead of starting all at once? Are these meant to be taken with or before food?
    I've read that it's not good to eat low FODMAPs during this protocol because we don't want to starve the good bacteria.

    Has anyone had good results with herbal treatment and what did you use/for how long?
     
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  2. ljimbo423

    ljimbo423 Senior Member

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    I am having really good results from herbal treatment.:thumbsup: As it seems you are aware, SIBO/dysbiosis can cause food sensitivities and food sensitivities can also worsen dysbiosis and leaky gut.

    I am taking curcumin instead of turmeric. That's something you may want to consider if possible. The other thing I have found to be crucial is lowering my intake of carbs. Mainly starches like potatoes, rice, etc. It's my understanding that they are the primary food of the pathogenic bacteria in the gut.

    I am taking holy basil, oil of oregano and thyme to kill off the SIBO/dysbiosis. I have taken many different herbs over the course of the last year though. The ones you have mentioned sound good to start. I would recommend you start VERY slowly and see how you tolerate the bacterial die off many experience.

    I have been treating my gut for about a year and have improved dramatically! I have also had CFS for 28 years and I think the longer one has CFS, the longer it takes to reverse it. The improvements I have made though still amaze me almost every day!

    I think you have a good protocol to start. Be prepared to adjust it as needed though. As far as the dosing goes, I would start with one garlic or one neem cap for 3 days and see if you experience die off. It often takes 3 days for die off to be fully felt. For some it can be mild, for others it can make them very sick, so please start VERY slowly.

    I think you can take the herbs anytime unless they upset your stomach, then you might want to take them with meals. The FODMAPS question I'm kind of on the fence about. I waited 5-6 months to add fodmaps back into my diet BUT I don't know if I would do that again. I think prebiotics are extremely important for the microbiome and fodmaps are prebiotics. Also what you say about starving the bacteria while trying to kill them, I don't think is a good idea. It's better I think that they are looking for food, it makes them easier to kill.

    I don't think 4 weeks will be nearly long enough for you to see a big change in how you feel. I would plan on treating your gut for at least a year and you will probably need some kind of maintenance diet for at least a few years or longer. Although you could start to feel better within weeks, I would take the long view and see how it goes.

    Having said all that, there is much trial and error involved in treating the gut. I'm sure you will make adjustments as you go, that work better for you. As they say though, a journey of 1,000 miles starts with the first step!:thumbsup::)

    Jim
     
  3. ebethc

    ebethc Senior Member

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    I've had good luck w herbs, too, and highly recommend this path over rx solutions... the FC Cidal and Dysbiocide is first choice, but since you can't afford it now, it's out.... 2nd choice is Berberine and Oregano Oil Softgels ($10, NOW brand). I also cook w a lot of thyme... Jim gave good advice re avoiding Carbs/Starches... So, there's a lot you can do on a low budget

    One caveat: the herbs kill good bacteria, too, so the combo of proper diet (feeding good bacteria) and herbs is key...and I always get sicker before I get better even w the proper diet.. I did herbs last May-June, then was REALLY sick in July-August, then better than I've been in years.. Chronic sore throat and swollen glands were gone for the first time in years... It killed more than SIBO, for sure... Just plan for that in case you are not already bed bound anyway.

    Other ways to re-innoculate good bacteria = prebiotics.... The next one I want to try is GOS, but I don't have the money right now..

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4030608/

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24891990
     
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  4. datura

    datura

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    @ljimbo423 -- glad you have been having success w/ herbs! The turmeric I take is high curcumin, I think. Good to know about the carbs -- my carb sources are yams, quinoa, oatmeal, berries, + applesauce. I was iffy on the yams but I don't eat huge servings of them and I thought they would be useful for keeping the good bacteria fed.

    Thanks for the tip about starting slowly. I'll work my way up to the intended dose. I've read, though, that herbal antimicrobials shouldn't necessarily be taken long-term (e.g., more than a month or two) -- does that just apply to certain herbs? The ones I'm thinking of are berberine-rich herbs. I'm also thinking I need to cycle the herbs so that I don't become resistant? I wonder if there really is an exact science to it, like with conventional antibiotics (very specific time frame), or if there's a lot of room for 'error' or experimentation? I just don't want to do it 'wrong' and make my dysbiosis worse!

    I'll watch for any die-off reaction -- a month ago I thought I was experiencing die-off, because **TMI** elimination smelled horribly of motor oil, but it's been happening every day since then so I'm not sure it's die-off. It started around the time I started taking DGL and quercetin and eliminating food triggers, and drinking lots of 'detox' teas (dandelion, burdock, nettle) + adding in coconut oil and butter for the lauric/caprylic acid / immune and metabolic benefits.

    I'm eager to start incorporating gut-healing foods again such as kefir and kombucha, but I'm not quite there yet due to histamine intolerance.

    I'm definitely going to keep treating my gut long-term, as far as supporting the mucosa and taking enzymes. Have you all tried gut-supportive herbs such as licorice, marshmallow root, aloe, slippery elm? Thinking of trying Choice Throat Cozy tea which has licorice and marshmallow root.

    @ebethc -- Did you take the herbs for the whole two months? Glad you're feeling better -- are you taking anything to maintain your results?
     
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  5. ljimbo423

    ljimbo423 Senior Member

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    I think that applies to very high doses of very concentrated herbal extracts or herbal oils, like high doses of oil of oregano, which are very potent and concentrated. Treating SIBO and leaky gut is more often than not a long term process, many months or longer.

    You could do "courses" of several weeks at a time and repeat that after taking some time off. My concern with that is the bacteria growing back in the time one takes off from taking the herbs to kill them.

    My experience of taking daily herbs, for a year, to kill off the bacterial overgrowth has only benefited me and in no way that I am aware of hurt my health. As I said in my previous post though, you will need to find what works for you and what you are most comfortable with.:)

    I keep my carbs from starchy foods down to 50 gms a day, although I eat about 2,000 calories a day, a lot from fats like olive oil and butter.

    I have been doing that, not because I think resistance builds up, but because different herbs kill different bacteria. So I take many different herbs, at different times, for different lengths of times.

    As I understand it, there are many different bacteria that cause SIBO/dysbiosis. So my view is, the more types of different herbs I take the better. There isn't an exact science to it, just general guidelines.

    I have taken DGL and am still taking aloe vera but I think marshmallow root and slippery elm are good too. I am also taking 7-8 grams a day of glutamine and was taking 3-4 grams a day of colostrum, up until about a week ago. Because it's so expensive, I stopped taking it.

    I'm not sure what's causing that but it does sound like either die off and/or your body detoxifying toxins. High levels of toxins go hand in hand with SIBO/dysbyosis and leaky gut.

    Jim
     
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  6. ebethc

    ebethc Senior Member

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    I've been taking some oregano oil a little bit this year.. nothing as consistent (every day) or wholistic as last year (the dysbiocide and fc cidal have a lot of herbs)... My baseline health is good, however, I still get every cold/flu that goes around and have no resistance to oxidative stress... eg. I got VERY sick during the norcal fires last fall (i'm super sensitive to particulate matter, and we had 2 solid weeks of heavy duty pollution from the fires)... it took me months to recover... this year, I got the flu, shingles and then a sinus infection... On top of that, I get CFS flares from (IMO) gut issues... eg severe pain from low baro pressure and winter storms.. So, the fall/winter/spring have been rough, but now that winter is over here, i'm hoping to make myself stronger... The incredible improvement that I felt late summer / early fall last year was (i think) b/c I killed some long-term infections, thus my baseline health improved... I still have no resistance, though, and that's what I have to figure out this year... I'm taking arabinogalactan and will start GOS (prebiotic) as soon as I can afford it.. those are both gut supplements that feed good bacteria, but probably also bad... it's important to kill the bad stuff before you start throwing in microbiome fertilizer! Also, will go see Dr Kaufman as soon as I have better health insurance... I've gone almost as far as I can by myself...

    the gut stuff is basically all you, though, and it's time consuming and doesn't have to be outrageously expensive, so you can work on that until you can afford more expensive treatments/doctors... super slow and no doctor can make it go faster..

    ps I found that I had to take betaine w pepsin w meat... low stomach acid can cause a lot of bacterial problems, and I think that may be a big contributor for me personally.. I use thorne brand, and take two w meat meals..
     
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  7. kangaSue

    kangaSue Senior Member

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  8. datura

    datura

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    @ljimbo423 -- I've been searching around trying to find antimicrobial herbs that would help clear SIBO, but I don't want to take anything too strong if I can help it. After treating for a year, do you find you have to take antimicrobial herbs as maintenance? Or is it just necessary to focus on moderate consumption of mucilaginous herbs, probiotics, and prebiotics? Eventually I'd like to be able to eat a moderate amount of carbs and not have to have such a restricted diet.

    @ebethc -- I had considered betaine with pepsin, but it might be too strong for me. I'm taking lemon juice before meals, and trying not to drink so much water around mealtime. It's hard, though, because I'm so thirsty during mealtime, even if I've had water in between!

    @kangaSue -- Thanks -- I've read about LDN for chronic pain and autonomic issues. They seem to be interrelated, though I think it's poorly understood.
     
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  9. ljimbo423

    ljimbo423 Senior Member

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    I have used Ceylon cinnamon, which works well. I bought the powder in a 2 ounce spice bottle. That way you can take as much or as little as you want to. Therefore giving you a lot of control over any die off symptoms and it don't taste bad either.:)

    I am actually still treating SIBO/dysbiosis, so I still take herbs daily for it. I've had dysbiosis for many years and I think the longer you have it, the longer it takes to get rid of it. It also depends on how high a dose of herbs you take to kill off the overgrowth.

    I have been taking a low to moderate amount. If I was taking a higher amount, I'm sure I would be even further along in my healing.

    I think the amount of carbs one will be able to tolerate after it's gone, varies a lot. It will be trial and error, I think to find the amount that works best for you.

    Jim
     
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  10. datura

    datura

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    ljimbo423 likes this.

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