Monday, September 24, 2012

Health Findings, A Celebration Sidestep

Lately, in my blog I've been talking about the various health discoveries I've come across in an effort to strengthen my immune system. My tip for the day is prayer, because I did not stick with any of my new rules for eating, BUT with good reason...

My Boy and I, he's the best gift every year!

Breakfast with a friend - had a wonderful twist on a Denver Omelet which came with hash browns. It was at Bravo Farms in Traver, and I love their Sage Cheese so they added that to my omelet.

Lunch - met with some local youth pastors for our monthly lunch meeting and enjoyed some great local Mexican food. (it has cheese :)).

Dinner - Went out with the hubby to Brewbakers and had a wonderful Cobb Salad and Garlic Fries as well as a beer (which has yeast, which I was trying to stay away from).

The big kicker: Dessert

My sweet sister, Catie, sent me a basket of goodies (a small cake, cookies, cake pops, meringue pies, and fudge), so that kind of hurts my current no processed (or low processed) sugar rule. We also had the parentals over for a chocolate cream pie. Typically, I go for the All-American Chocolate Cake from Costco, but if you know this cake - its huge! So that would have been way too much temptation for me.

I had a slice of pie, a cake pop, a bit of meringue and half a snickerdoodle. That is falling off the wagon my friends, and yet had I not been trying to find some restraint, I probably would have inhaled much more.

It was a great day and now before heading to bed, I am drinking a glass of the Bragg's ACV and water and taking all my vitamin suppliments. I will probably need to juice in the morning (carrots and spinach is what I have at the moment). Good Night and Happy Birthday to me!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Health Findings - Part 2

If you are just tuning in, I am on a search for better health. I am struggling with a weak immune system. You can read more in my earlier posts. Here are some of the latest ideas I've stumbled across.

1. Detox your body in an apple cidar vinegar bath (there seems to be some debate as to whether or not one can use filtered - it is cheaper). Use 30 ounces of vinegar in your bath and sit in it for 30 minutes. It draws the toxins out and even aids in the look of your hair.

2. Eating a Rainbow of Colors in you fruits and veggies. Here's a few examples of foods from each color, for summary of benefits, check out the Bragg website, this article at Whole Living, or do a google search.

Remember your rainbow colors (ROY G BIV)

Red: Cranberries, goji berries, red cabbage, red peppers (all varieties), tomatoes, red apples, raspberries, strawberries, red cherries, red grapefruits, red grapes, pomegranate, watermelon, kidney beans.

Orange: Oranges, tangerines, turmeric, sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkin, peaches, apricots, winter squash, cantaloupe, papaya

Yellow: Yellow snap beans, corn, walnuts, peanuts, chickpeas (garbanzo beans), pineapple, yellow bell pepper, golden zucchini, butternut squash, bananas, golden apples, grapefruit, lemons, papayas, Jerusalem artichokes, soybeans, sesame seeds

Green: Artichokes, asparagus, green snap beans, Italian green beans, lima beans, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, celery, cucumbers, fennel, turnip greens, collards, kale, dandelion greens, mustard greens, lettuce (the darker, the better), leeks, okra, green bell peppers, spinach, chives, zucchini, green apples, avocados, green grapes, kiwi, limes, pears, mung beans, wheat grass

Blue: Blueberries, blackberries, dark grapes, currants, black beans

Indigo: same as violet

Violet: Acai berries, purple wax beans, beets, purple broccoli, red cabbage, Chinese purple eggplant, purple kale, turnips, ruby seedless grapes, plums, prunes, passion fruit, purple artichoke

Tuck this list in your purse or keep it in your car and make sure get something from each color when you are at the store or farmers market. Eating a variety seems to be the key in getting all your nutrients. Vitamins are good, but your only getting the best nutrients from foods. Stay healthy.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Health Findings - Part 1

Today I wanted to cry pushing my cart through the grocery store as familiar packages looked at me from the shelves and I walked on by, not putting them in my cart. It was almost as if they were calling my name, but I had to say no. No, I'm not dieting, but I need to make a change in my diet. This realization has brought to light the reality that I am addicted to food. I love it. Yes, there is nothing wrong with loving food, but I love food that is bad for you.
Recently, I have experienced some health issues and my immune system doesnt seem to have what it takes to recover, and so that has sent me on a search of what I can do beyond get on yet another antibiotic.
I've decided to record my journey here and allow others to benefit from my research and trial and error. You may not agree with all that I decide to do, but gather what you can and let the rest go. Are you ready? Here we go.

1. A friend, Cecelia Mainord, recommended adding Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar to my life. I've imbibed the water and apple cider cocktail, but apparently the key is getting raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar. Bragg's just happens to be what our stores carry. So now I drink Bragg's in my water three times a day. One of my struggles is sinuses, and raw apple cider vinegar helps thin the mucus. If you want to check out the other benefits, check out the Bragg's website.

2. Reinstate regular (twice a day) the use of the netipot. I am using a baking soda and Kosher salt mix in the pot to flush out my sinus cavities. Its not so fabulous to do but it does help me from getting overly congested and cleans me out. After suggested by my friend, Jen Rachal, I now use it in the morning in the shower; its a bit easier that way. If you don't know what a netipot is, it looks like a genie bottle, and you mix water and the mix listed above inside and then breathe through your mouth and pour the water into one nostril and let it flow out the other. Fun huh?! (Sarcasm)

3. Did you know that excessive dairy consumption can cause chronic sinus infections? Well I am the dairy queen. I love cheese, yogurt, sour cream, cream cheese, butter, milk, ice get the picture. So apparently I will need to cut my dairy consumption (more on that later).

4. Due to being on antibiotics and nursing my son, I have gotten thrush, which results in overproduction of yeast. So that begs the question, how to get rid of the yeast? There are homeopathic and medical ways to resolve the problem. I am trying a bit of both. I've heard some disagreements on diet. Yeast feeds on sugar, so some have said cut my sugar and carb consumption so the yeast will go away, but others have said not to, because then once I reinstate my old eating habits, the resurgence of sugar will cause the yeast to come back.

I am taking Acidophilus and L-Lysine and have gotten Infant Probiotics for my son. I am also taking the Diflucan pill as prescribed by my doctor as well as a Nystatin Cream. I am cutting my processed sugar intake, but still eating limited fruits and carbs.

That is all for now, but I have had two enlightening conversations with two good friends that have shared what works for them and their solutions are drastically different. Stay tuned for those conversations in my next entry.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Connecting with Jesus in a New Way

Today while reading "Walking With God, God's Way" by William Wyatt, I read that our purpose is to be transformed into God's image. Because God doesn't need us, our steps in ministry are to walk alongside God in what he is already doing. Each step of life is about knowing God and becoming more like him. I also read that when we go through awful things (the author shared a story about a missionary rape victim) we get to share in just part of the suffering Christ experienced on the cross. It just got me thinking. The horrible experiences are a connection with the horrible suffering our Savior lived out on the cross. Its an offering of intimacy. Now I am not saying God zaps us with tradegy. Don't forget our God is good, but he allows it and hopes that through it we will find him and know him in a new way.

I have a story that captures some of this, it may be something I've already written about in a previous post. Many years ago, my mom was married to a man named Kurt. Kurt had a difficult childhood. He was exposed to pornography and child abuse from his dad. His mom would just sit back and watch while this would occur. Kurt drank. That is how he coped with tumultuous emotional agony he journeyed. When he drank, he hit my mom.

Our lives with Kurt included hiding, yelling, fighting, pushing, hitting, and inappropriate touching. However, Kurt found God through our life with him. Fast forward about 20 years. Kurt was sick, and dying. Eventually he died. My mom officiated the funeral. Weird, yes, but amazing at the same time. Kurt at one point almost killed my mom. As a girl I watched him try to stab her with a screwdriver after beating her mercilously. Years later she had to have back surgery as a result of the injuries she incurred in that marriage. She will forever be marked physical due to the marriage, but God has healed the heart. God replaced pain with forgiveness and empathy for a hurting man. As I walked through my emotions during all of this, God revealed to me that the worst years of my life, were the best years of Kurt's. I realized that those years showed him God, and I came to a place in my heart of gratitude and acceptance. It was worth all the pain if Kurt found God through it. Those feelings weren't there for any other reason except God put them there.

I felt the amazing glow of 2 Corinthians 4:7 in my own life:

"We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves." (NLT)

My suffering in those years (and a few other issues in my life) have allowed me to share with others and be empathetic to the life experience of those around me. May God bring you to this place as you have walked and continue to walk in a place of pain. May God be your rescue, your guiding light and your sacred companion. Let that light shine through your cracks, and may you find comfort in his understanding as he held all of that pain on the cross.