Lyme Disease

Lyme Disease

Natural Support—Supplements for Lyme Disease

by Kamau Kokayi, MD
Kamau Kokayi bw

Based on your evaluation, symptom complex, stage of Lyme disease infection, and presence of co-infection, a supplemental regimen possibly comprising micronutrient, vitamin, neurotransmitter, and bioidentical hormone support may be recommended, as well as any one or a combination of the following herbs and phytotherapeutic formulations.

Compound Formulations

Transfer Factor LymPlus™



Please be aware that supplements for treating Lyme disease can have very powerful effects.

Many natural products can interact with pharmaceutical medications.

Supplements should be used to treat Lyme disease only under the guidance of an experienced integrative health care practitioner.

Under a physician's direction, Transfer Factor LymPlus™ may have special dietary usefulness for individuals diagnosed with Borrelia burgdorferi (cell-wall deficient Lyme), as well as other infectious diseases such as Babesia, Ehrlichia, Bartonella, Epstein–Barr virus (EBV), HHV 6B, cytomegalovirus (CMV), and Chlamydia pneumoniae. Transfer Factor LymPlus™ provides our physicians with a targeted formula developed to support the body's immune system. This uniquely formulated transfer factor is derived from chicken-based transfer factor.

Transfer Factor Multi-Immune™

Transfer Factor Multi-Immune™ is helpful for patients with a weak immune system. Regular use under a doctor's supervision is found to be effective. Transfer Factor Multi-Immune™ is a daily-use immune support product. For healthy people it promotes healthy NK (natural killer) cell levels, keeping "bugs" at bay. For immune-compromised individuals, it assists the body in bringing NK cell levels to where they need to be for optimal health. As Transfer Factor works at the cellular immunity level (as opposed to humoral immunity), it does not stimulate the immune system. Transfer factors act as chemical messengers to alert the body's naïve T-cells to recognize any foreign bodies that may be found in the body.

Individual Herbs for Lyme Disease

Plant medicines are very good at addressing some of the more subtle imbalances that occur in immune function, and are additionally able to target specific problems that occur in certain areas of the body or within certain body systems. The following medicinal herbs represent a sampling of those plant species most useful in Lyme disease treatment protocols.

  • Andrographis paniculata—Known as Chuan Xin Lian in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Andrographis paniculata is a bitter herb that has been used in Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine for centuries for a broad range of diseases and conditions. Lyme spirochetes behave much like other parasites, and A. paniculata has been very useful in parasitic diseases, including syphilis, also caused by a spirochete bacterium. Andrographis has been credited with decreasing mortality in the 1918 flu pandemic in India. While its therapeutic actions are broad, in Lyme disease Andrographis activity is antispirochetal and anti-inflammatory for the central nervous system. It helps reduce pain and stimulates the immune system.
  • Astragalus membranacea—An important herb in the Chinese medical compendium for thousands of years, Astragalus is known in China by the name Huang Qi. Astragalus is a potent immune modulator, promoting pro-immunity factors while reducing cofactor actions that promote infection. Astragalus supports immune function, protects the heart and heart function, provides anti-inflammatory protection, and supplies antioxidation effects in the brain.
  • Ceanothus americanus—Red root derives its benefit in Lyme disease from its stimulation of the lymphatic system, the disposal system of the immune response, removing waste and detritus resulting from bacterial infection in the body. Red root is also a potent anti-inflammation agent in both the liver and spleen.
  • Dipsacus sylvestris—Teasel root in Traditional Chinese medicine has been used to alleviate pain in the knees and back, and to reduce swelling and inflammation. In Lyme therapy it is useful for arthritic symptoms, muscle stiffness, and chronic inflammation.
  • Eleutherococcus senticosus—Eleuthero, or Siberian ginseng, stimulates a strong immune response to infection from Lyme spirochetes. In Lyme treatment, eleuthero reduces chronic fatigue, and improves cognitive function affected by Lyme. The herb is known for its immune-supportive actions, stress reduction, and ability to normalize physiological functions promoting overall health and well-being.
  • Harpagophytum procumbens—Devil's claw is an African herb that is useful in Lyme treatment for inflammation in the joints and for pain relief. Oleanolic and ursolic acids in Devil's claw contribute to its immuno-modulating, immuno-stimulating activities, as well as its cardioprotective properties.
  • Polygonum cuspidatum—Japanese knotweed is a relatively new addition to the Western herbalist's toolkit, although a part of Chinese and Japanese healing arts for two millennia. Japanese knotweed has broad systemic benefits that include antispirochetal, anti-inflammatory, anti-autoinflammatory, antioxidant, as well as acting to protect the central nervous system, lower blood pressure, and provide a good source of vitamin C. Resveratrol, an active compound found also in red wine and believed to be behind the "French paradox," the famously rich French diet resulting in little heart disease, is one of many active components in Japanese knotweed.
  • Smilax glabra—Sarsaparilla has a long history of use in Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine, and found wide acceptance in Europe, having been introduced from the New World in the early 1500's. Smilax binds endotoxins in bacterial infections, facilitating their removal, as well as decreasing autoimmune reactions while promoting specific immunity against infections. It is also antiparasitic, antifungal, and antibacterial. Smilax also possesses strong anti-inflammatory properties, reducing pain in arthritic joints, protecting brain function, and working synergistically with other herbal treatments used against Lyme infections.
  • Stephania tetrandra—Stephania root improves arthritic conditions through reductions in inflammation, swelling, and pain. Its anti-inflammatory properties extend to reducing inflammation associated with Bell's palsy, partial paralysis of the face, and symptoms from neuroborreliosis.
  • Uncaria tomentosa—Cat's claw is another powerful immune stimulant, anti-inflammatory, and analgesic herb. Related species have been used in China and India for centuries. U. tomentosa is a South American species which is specific for muscle and joint pain in Lyme disease, as well as improving cognitive impairments due to Lyme, protecting the heart and heart function, and raising white blood cell count in late Lyme disease.
  • Urtica dioica—Stinging nettle is another herb long known for its pain relieving and anti-inflammation properties. Nettle can reduce general arthritic symptoms by supporting cartilage and collagen health. Elastase is a naturally produced enzyme that degrades cartilage and collagen; stinging nettle inhibits the actions of elastase while providing anti-inflammatory relief as well.

This list of medicinal plants used to support patients with Lyme is by no means all-inclusive. Many more natural support supplements are available to assist in the treatment of Lyme disease and its related co-infections.

To add a word about the effectiveness of a given herb, the active components have in many cases been identified and standardized to therapeutic dosage in available formulations, to ensure consistency and potency. As long recognized in traditional healing arts such as African, Chinese, Ayurveda, Native American and European herbal medicine, there is often a synergistic efficacy that a given herbal treatment provides that is greater than its individual active constituents. It is often true that the total effectiveness of a given herb is actually greater than the sum of its active parts. This should not be surprising as flora (plants) and fauna (animal life) have co-evolved over millions of years and are likely more closely interrelated than commonly recognized in modern medicine.

Begin Your Journey to Wellness with Patients Medical

The effects of chronic Lyme disease can significantly affect your health, livelihood, and overall well-being. Conventional antibiotic therapy may provide an initial sense of relief, but if your symptoms should return, continue, or worsen in spite of conventional therapy, as they do in many Lyme sufferers, broadening your therapeutic options is a worthwhile step toward restoring both your health and your sense of well-being.

At Patients Medical we draw upon both modern and ancient healing arts to tackle the oft-times bewildering problems chronic Lyme disease presents in our patients. Our team of Lyme experts can develop a personalized, integrative treatment protocol designed to optimize your long-term health and support you in countering the symptoms and detrimental effects of Lyme disease.

Begin Your Journey to Wellness with Patients Medical

Our job at Patients Medical is to listen, to connect the dots between a patient's medical history, symptoms, and their underlying causes. Patients Medical is a superb place for women and men to secure integrative and holistic health care from providers who give personalized care, partner with the patient to focus on the root cause of their illness, support their recovery, and help them maintain good health.

To make an appointment with one of our physicians, please call us at 1-212-794-8800. We look forward to hearing from you.

Next Steps For Supplement Therapy:

Many of us will benefit by taking supplements for the issues discussed on this page.

To order the supplements, please visit our supplements store website Or call 1-212-794-8800 to place an order.

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