Q. Dear Dr. Dean:
I have been taking your top mastic formulation for about 3 weeks. My lab work reported many lesions in my stomach, but not the esophagus. I don’t have ulcers; but severe gastritis. It very much affects my voice, which I have to use every day for work. I am taking 4 capsules of the formulation at breakfast, lunch, and bedtime. This is not yet giving me adequate relief. Can I increase the dosage, and take more capsules at each meal, including supper, and bedtime? Also, for a severe case of H. pylori infection, how long does it take with your formulation to get significant results?
Jeanne, Spring Valley, NY
A. Dear Jeanne:
At the dose of the mastic formulation that you are currently taking (12 capsules per day), you are consuming two grams (2,000 mg) of mastic gum (the principal active ingredient contained in the formulation).
In a landmark article in the New England Journal of Medicine, the authors reported that “even low doses of mastic gum—one gram per day for two weeks—can cure peptic ulcers very rapidly.”1 The researchers found that mastic was effective in killing 99.9 percent of seven different strains of H. pylori. However, this was a dish study. Yet, other studies (see the many articles published in Life Enhancement) have borne out this preliminary conclusion, finding that mastic therapy is on par with or close to the pharmaceutical “triple therapy.” This drug therapy, however, has many side effects and is less effective for reinfection treatment, which is not the case with mastic. Also, it is important to note that reinfection may be self-infection, such as the harboring of H. pylori in the calculus of the teeth may cause. A mastic biofilm can be helpful, and provided by chewable wafers of mastic that get in between the teeth.
You are already taking twice what the NEJM researchers suggested to be an effective dose. In my experience, one month of treatment with the mastic line of products should be adequate treatment—although extending the treatment period for several months should ensure eradication of the H. pylori.
Unfortunately, as no one seems to know how we become infected with H. pylori, it is possible that a re-infection has occurred, and chronic suppressive doses of Bye-Lori™ may be indicated. Also, since there is no known toxicity to mastic gum, you may consider increasing the dose; either by adding another four capsules of one of the mastic formulations.
I hope this helps,
Ward Dean, M.D.
- Huwez FU. Thirlwell, D. Mastic gum kills Helicobacter pylori. N Engl J Med, 339: 1946, Dec 24, 1998.