Many know that now I eat a plant based diet, after many attempts to consume animal proteins with catastrophic side effects. I have been converting to a new dietary lifestyle as of last spring. I have found this to be a method of metabolic detoxification that is slow and restorative, while also incredibly effective. I began this conversion last year, and as the seasons changed I am moving deeper into that process. This is also an emotional process of breaking old habits, especially finding comfort in food. Over the course of the last 3+ years the following have been purged from my diet:
- Animal Protein
- Fermented Foods
- Canned or leftover foods
- Fried Foods (I cheated with grain free tortilla chips and one bag of purple potato chips on my birthday)
- Store bought fruit juices
- Cooked nightshades (I still occasionally eat cooked potatoes)
The focus of this time will intensely be on the following goals:
- NO PACKAGED/PROCESSED FOODS! (I have three left to purge).
- Not eating cooked food on a daily basis (to begin I will eat cooked food every other day).
- No oils (minus oil pulling).
- Tapering out sea salt (I was on a high sodium diet when very unstable with cardiac issues).
- Slow Taper of synthetic digestive enzymes, I currently take digestive enzymes with fats and cooked meals but not with fruits.
- Reduction in grains (I now eat soaked or sprouted corn, millet, quinoa, and gluten free oats 4-5 times per month).
Challenge 1: I will be going potato, grain free later in the process of converting to a raw food diet (this is to achieve a deeper level of detoxification).
Challenge 2: It has been hard on my body, the intensity of the detox brings waves of symptoms, and I keep the pace with balance and intuition.
I plan to expand from there, after finding stable ground, my first milestone will be eating raw for one week. I will begin that process as it unfolds, now keeping focus on staying stable, going slow and steady.
The nutrition protocol that I follow as I shift toward a raw diet consists of consuming 1800-2500 calories per day in the following pattern:
- 80% fruits and veggies
- 10-15% fat
- 10% protein
- Celery and/orLemon Juice on empty stomach first thing in the AM
- Coconut Milk AM/pain tonic
- Raw Fruits until 1pm
- Raw Fruits and Veggies/Nuts/Seeds until 730pm
- Cooked Foods/Grains/Root, cruciferous veggies after 730pm
Focus 1: I will listen to my body and increase or decrease intake as necessary, with focus on the above methods and guidelines.
Focus 2: I also follow strict food combination guidelines and do not mix fruits with other foods, and avoid proteins combined with starches.
I have returned to a baseline protocol after changing or reducing some supplements and herbs. I currently follow a near daily protocol with the below herbs and foods:
- Bromelain in supplement form
- B12 Adeno 3000mcg
- Elderberry (at times I add echinacea)
- Raw Enriched Honey (propolis,pollen, jelly)
- Milk Thistle
- Hawthorn Berry Powder
- Acai Berry Powder
- Chicory/Dandelion/Burdock Root
- Ginger (in tincture/tea and bath); This has also been great as a mouth rinse reducing gum bleeding
- Arnica (topically)
- Cannabis (currently converting from a smoking method to an edible method)
- Vitamin D (via sunshine and reducing baths/showers using soap)
- Hydration! Hydration! Hydration! (1-2 liters of water daily)
- Baths with Apple Cider Vinegar/very occassionally epsom salt salve.
- I will soon resume dry brushing before detoxification baths as the intense adrenal fatigue improves.
- I have discontinued the use of castor oil with good results.
Focus 1: Cleansing the colon and restoring healthy microbes by way of nutrition primarily.
Focus 2: I will be learning more on how to prepare well balanced raw food meals. I do not plan to incorporate many homemade fermented foods at this point, but will continue to consider this after further education. I have been able to tolerate very small amounts. I am on the fence about probiotics (unless on natural antibiotic/antimicrobial protocol).
I have been dealing with severe and painful swelling of the blood vessels and tendons in the arms and legs. I have had decades of cardiac issues and have addressed this with serious motivation, research, contemplation, and intuition.
- pericarditis (swelling of sac around the heart)
- unusually low blood pressure (but that is the kidney/adrenal issue)
- panic/anxiety disorder (now I understand the fright and flight/adrenaline response in the body, ADRENALS)!
I would often sleep in the parking lot of the emergency room as I had no idea when the rapid onset of symptoms would occur. Often it would start when on the brink of falling asleep, and I suffered decades of painful insomnia. It also impacted my employment, making it hard to keep a job, I often was taken to the emergency room via by myself, a boss, co-worker, or by ambulance.
Entering into the Summer the focus will be on kidney, liver, and cardiac/circulatory support. I will address the vitamin K amounts in food and herbs, as I discovered that some of the daily herbs that I was taking were high in vitamin K. It is recommended that having a consistent amount is important, this requires more balance in my daily food and medicinal herbal choices.
I will continue to address blood thinning and flow as well, continuing to wear compression socks for 2-6 hours per day, and taking natural blood thinning treatments including ginger, bromelain, tomato seeds, topical arnica gel, and witch hazel baths are the primary source right now.
have not been this stable digestively in nearly a decade, though I have suffered extreme stomach pain since childhood. The constipation, or painful onset of diarrhea would take hold at random times and I would have to stop at gas stations, rest stops in a rush to find a toilet, having painful bowel movements. I felt like I was being gutted and a sharp sword stuck into my butt. My body going into cold sweats, with waves of nausea. Have you ever had to take a crap in a toilet while holding a trashcan to vomit into?
I hated vomiting but it became a regular reality, sometimes up to 10 times in one day, often I would have to pull over on the side of the road, my stomach knotted in horrific pain. This was a way of life for me, again sending me to the emergency room on a frequent basis. Phenegran became the new candy, but these knocked me out and I spent endless beautiful sunny days in a drugged slumber.
I still have work to do on the gut issues, I still struggle when eating certain foods and am adjusting my diet accordingly. Three years of food experimenting and journaling are beginning paying off! I have literally been building from ground zero, as at one point I was unable to keep down fluids, my bowels were barely functioning. I still struggle with swallowing foods, which has made eating raw foods a challenge, it often takes me an hour to eat a small meal. Again symptoms that would end me up in the emergency room, dehydrated and beyond constipated, and in excruciating pain. The prescribed medications for these issues made it even more difficult to function, and I endured many painful procedures.
The medical establishment was just as cold and cruel as I had experienced since childhood, I was further drugged, dismissed as a hypochondriac, and treated with mockery and disdain, especially when I expressed unease about tests and treatments. I have literally had a doctor throw my chart at me, and often overheard nurses and staff making fun of me, especially if I was in elevated pain. “It’s all in her head” were words that I still hear in echoes, a gross mantra I heard repeated over and over again.
As the list of psych meds grew, I wondered if I was indeed crazy or making this all up? I felt lost and tried numerous treatments, therapies, and medications that permeated me with fear and doubt. At one point, I would have to crawl or drag my lower body around to meet basic needs like going to the bathroom. It would be too hard to wash my hair or bath. I could not drive without the use of cruise control, and I would often have to sit on the floor while waiting in a check out line at the store. I have been able to comfortably walk barefoot for the first time in years and my feet are not swelling as badly, but still burn with mind numbing pain. It has been 6 years since I was fully disabled by the fluoroquinolone antibiotic Levaquin, that was administered with steroids, for a chest infection.
I have been able to gain some executive function by having a structured environment. I have loving support. I am staying as active as possible, and trying new things. I am blessed with a loving support group. I am able to get out of bed throughout the day, though I still need long naps. I still stay indoors a majority of the time due to symptoms and sensory/chemical sensitivities but I have achieved some amazing milestones.
Taking a 10 minute swim in the ocean, was a profoundly emotional experience. I had been primarily homebound and often bedridden for over 6 years. I even weighed in at 102 pounds, after over one year since the bone broth again triggered the aggressive wasting syndrome. I began actually seeing some meat and muscle on these bones. That said my focus is not on rebuilding just yet, that will come later on.
I can now see, smell, read, write, and type again, though still in a diminished capacity. I still have to sit down often as I prep food, and have limited use of my hands and wrists.
It is such a miraculous blessing to be able to regain these abilities, even if slowly. The use of Arnica gel and hot baths help, I am also able to tolerate brief, cold showers now to help stimulate adrenal function. I do light yoga and walking as much and often as I am able, the use of the compression socks really help (but they are a bit difficult to wear). I still experience extreme pain and discomfort, though I am managing through the pain, it is more extreme than I could possibly describe. I keep things simple and laugh as much as possible!
I have also continued easing the toxic load to my body by phasing out plastics and metals. I no longer wear metal jewelry, use toxic bath/beauty products, and I got rid of clothing that was not GOTS or OEKO-Tex certified (safe from toxic chemicals and dyes). I have also focused on purging emotional blockages, and painful/toxic relationships and behaviors.
This is my 4th summer free from pharmaceuticals after a nightmarish cold turkey withdrawal from these regular medications:
- Pristiq (Antidepressant)
- Klonopin (Anxiety/Benzo)
- Valium (Anxiety/Benzo)
- Diazepam (Anxiety/Benzo)
- Vistaril (Anxiety)
- Seroquel (Anxiety/Insomnia)
- Zofran (Digestive)
- Albuterol (Pulmonary)
- Lyrica (Pain)
- Percocet (Pain)
- Ondansetron HCL-Zofran (nausea)
- Lyrica (Pain)
I had taken many more prescribed meds before acute withdrawal. The previous 6 years I had been administered the following:
- Azithromycin (antibiotic), Levofloxacin (fluroroquinolone antibiotic),
Ciprofloxacin (Fluoroquinolone antibiotic), Nitrofurantoin-Macro (antibiotic), Metronidazole (antibiotic for bacterial vaginosis), Cheratussin (Expectorants), Benzonatate (cough suppressant), Prednisone (steroid), Promethazine (Antihistamine),
Lidoderm (Sodium channel blocker), Oxycodone (opiate), Compro (Antipsychotic),
Lorazepam (Benzodiazepine), Alprazolam (Benzodiazepine), Clonazepam (Benzodiazepine), Clorazepate (Benzodiazepine), Sertraline (Zoloft SSRI Antidepressant), Sumatriptan (Imitrex) (Serotonin 5-HT-Receptor Agonists, Naproxen ((NSAID), Nystatin-Triamcinolone (Steroid and antifungal), Zyprexa (Antipsychotic), Hydroxyzine Pam (Antihistamine), Saphris (antipsychotic), Tramadol (Narcotic), Ibuprofen (NSAID),
Phenazopyridine (Analgesic), Gabapentin (Nerve pain medication and anticonvulsant), Cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril muscle relaxant), Butalb-Acetametaphine Caff (Barbiturate and Stimulant), Baclofen (Muscle relaxant)
Morphine Sulfate (opiate), Suboxone (Narcotic), Propoxyphen-APAP (narcotic),
Hydromorpone (Narcotic), Nabumetone (NSAID), Fluticasone Prop (corticosteroid)
Metaxalone (Muscle relaxant), Dronabinol (Marinol,THC), Metoprolol Succ ER (Beta blocker), and MANY over-the-counter medications.
One of the most amazing healing methods that I have experienced is meditation. Recently, I have begun further developing this practice, I am learning how to breath again! Each day a blessed struggle that has made me a better person in many ways, and enriching my appreciation for life and wellness. I cannot express the gratitude feel, and I trust in myself. I will keep moving in the direction of knowledge and intuition. Slowly healing my mind, body, heart and soul. I make time to be alone, to rest, and to be still, seeing and feeling the sunshine at long last!