Dear Stephen,
My question is about Chinese herbs: forsythia, isatis, gardenia, coptis, phellodendron, houttunya, lonicerae. Would you recommend any or all of these herbs, for someone who has followed your protocol for about 12 months and still has light symptoms coming back after stopping the herbs? I’m on month 8-9 of your protocol and I’m practically symptom free except for a cold feeling (for a few hours/day), but if I stop the herbs, arthritis comes back rather fast (and probably all other symptoms will come again, as my disease started with arthritic pain).

Stephen’s response:
The herbs in the Core Protocol will relieve arthritic symptoms, so it just may be arthritis though I can understand your concern if the Lyme began that way. In general, if you are feeling so much better on the protocol, I would recommend two approaches to take at this point, given your query.

One: See if you can reduce the protocol down to one tablet 3x daily each of Cat’s claw and Knotweed without return of arthritis symptoms. And then just keep doing them as a regular part of your regimen if that works.

Two: Begin the regular intake of immune tonics such as Astragalus, Siberian ginseng (a 1:5 tincture; not the Herb Pharm), Isatis, Ashwaghanda perhaps.

The herbs you mention are fine and no reason not to take them, however I am not up on them in detail at this point and would, if trying to decide on a course of action, look into your particular situation in a lot more detail, including your age, before deciding.

Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar and you may just have arthritis.

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