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The Impact Of Lyme And Mold On The Digestive Tract

Lyme disease can wreak havoc on various bodily systems. If the bacterial infection isn’t treated promptly, it can lead to chronic health issues that can last for years. Mold toxicity occurs when a person who is exposed to mold experiences symptoms from the exposure. Although not all people who come into contact with mold will come down with mold toxicity, those who do can experience respiratory and neurological symptoms if it is not addressed.

Those with weakened immune systems are more susceptible to symptoms from mold exposure, and Lyme disease can hinder the immune system’s ability to function. When a person contracts Lyme disease and develops mold toxicity, the combination of the two health issues can be devastating for various parts of the body, including the digestive tract.

Can Lyme disease affect your digestive system?

The digestive system is a vital component to overall health. The gut has various connections to other parts of the body, including the brain. This means that if the digestive system isn’t operating as it should, other parts of the body will feel its effects.

When someone contracts Lyme disease, it can upset their digestive processes. This is because the borrelia bacteria, which causes Lyme disease, can upset the balance between good and bad bacteria that live within the digestive tract. Treatment for Lyme disease can also play a role in the health of the digestive system because antibiotics have been shown to deplete levels of good bacteria while trying to rid the body of the bad kind that is causing problems. When this imbalance occurs, the energy that the body needs is not produced as it typically would be, thus altering bodily functions.

Image by Sandy Millar on Unsplash: Is there a way to do mold avoidance and Lyme disease recovery at the same time?  

There is also the chance that Lyme disease may cause chronic damage to the digestive system as the bacteria itself wreaks havoc. One such chronic issue that can arise is adrenal gland deficiency, a condition that leads to the body’s inability to produce enough digestive enzymes to break down food. When there aren’t enough digestive enzymes, particles of food can end up leaking into the bloodstream, which causes inflammation. Another condition that has been found in Lyme disease patients is leaky gut syndrome, which occurs when the microbiome is so out of balance that toxins and bacteria are able to leak through the intestinal wall.

What foods should be avoided with Lyme disease?

Food is an excellent way to help give the body what it needs to recover from an illness and stave off certain symptoms. A poor diet can lead to a host of health problems even without a condition such as Lyme disease, but for those who do have Lyme, poor nutrition makes symptoms that much worse. It also makes it harder to recover from the disease. Eating the right foods is crucial when it comes to Lyme disease, and that means lots of nutrient-rich fruit, vegetables, meats, and grains.

Many foods can be considered bad for Lyme disease. Foods that cause inflammation, such as sugary foods, high-fructose corn syrup, artificial trans fats, refined carbohydrates, and processed meats, should all be avoided if you have Lyme. Other types of foods that should be avoided include those that contain dairy or gluten, because they can exacerbate digestive system symptoms.   

Lyme disease and mold toxicity

Having mold toxicity or Lyme disease can be a difficult experience, but having them both at the same time can devastate the digestive system. Mold gets into the digestive system through the respiratory tract. Once inside, it can make its way the mucosa in the lower gut and cause issues with nutrient absorption and bowel function. Lyme disease, on the other hand, upsets the balance of bacteria as mentioned above. The more damage done to the gut by Lyme disease, the better it is for the mold infestation, because it can then continue to expand and release more of the mycotoxins that cause health issues. The mold will depend on the Lyme disease to cause damage so it can thrive.

nutritious healthy diet food
Image by Brooke Lark on Unsplash: People with Lyme disease should only eat nutritious whole foods.

Mold toxicity and Lyme disease share some very similar symptoms, such as:

  • Mood swings
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Cognitive issues such as confusion, focus and concentration issues, and poor memory
  • Fatigue
  • Problems with temperature regulation
  • Respiratory issues such as shortness of breath or cough
  • Digestive dysfunction and abdominal pain
  • Muscle and joint aches

This can make it incredibly difficult to diagnose both Lyme disease and mold as co-morbidities. Being exposed to mold and having Lyme disease can harm the digestive system, so if you suspect either, book an appointment with your doctor. Prompt treatment for both conditions increases the chances of a full recovery. 

Featured image by Ava Sol on Unsplash

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