My Natural Health Journey Update

> > Update: May 2015

9th May 2015

My health has taken a turn to better as a result of slowly eliminating a chronic sinus infection and cleansing my lungs. I suspect both have been affected by aspergillus mold infection for a long time (systemic, 'stealth' infection). Blood electrification, drinking ozonated water, daily sinus rinse, exercise and Chinese herbs caused my lungs and sinuses to start cleansing after two weeks. There is still mucus but I already have more energy and I feel stronger. I wake up earlier in the mornings naturally, I have more energy during the day, it seems as if I can tolerate carbohydrates a bit better (weight doesn't go up as quickly) - and even running seems a little easier, as if progress with exercise were faster.

alkaline green soup
Alkaline green soup - recipe here.

To read a more detailed explanation of the above, refer to the entries on aspergillus and sinus infection at the natural remedy library.

I am now trying to follow a route of moderation, since I have realized that changing my diet very drastically and suddenly doesn't allow for enough monitoring of which foods are good for my body and which are not.

To combat 'yin deficiency' caused by stress, as well as 'qi deficiency', I have been taking acupuncture and Chinese herbs. I also got some Tai Chi and Qi Gong exercises from the Chinese doctor to do - specific exercises for my condition. Sometimes I do these, and sometimes some yoga moves, also Five Tibetan Rites, the spine twist, trauma release exercises, some muscle exercises and stretches, depending on how I feel. I have come to recognise that for me personally, variety in exercise is very important. To be able to vary the exercises daily according to my moods is very liberating and makes it enjoyable.

In terms of diet, I am trying to eat mostly warm, alkaline foods. Warm because of a cold body constitution and mucus problems, to balance my energies, as advised by the Chinese doctor. I have noticed that eating warm foods seems to make me feel stronger. I have been especially happy to eat green soups. Alkaline foods, on the other hand, seem to be important to reduce inflammation in my body and to slowly eliminate menstrual cramps. I am not sure yet whether alkaline is enough or whether juice fasting or raw foods provide additional benefits for eliminating menstrual cramps (they seemed to help very quickly before, as reported in my hormone diet experiment). I am hoping that eating alkaline foods and staying away from sugar and processed foods as much as possible will be enough to eliminate menstrual cramps and the related inflammation for good.

I still eat raw foods, especially cabbage salad and green juices. But I try to make sure never to eat foods which have been cooled in the fridge. I also avoid ice in water and cold drinks and include warm foods and teas in my diet every day. Perhaps once my sinus infection has been dealt with and a good energy balance in my body has been achieved, I will be able to eat raw foods only. But if I already feel good otherwise, it may not be necessary to be a strict raw foodist, only partly-raw.

My favourite foods right now, which make me feel best, are: green soups, green juices, mandarins, spirulina-and-grapefruit smoothies, lemon water, chaga mushroom tea, angelica tea, chickpea pate, steamed salmon with vegetables and lots of green peas, and small-to-medium amounts of carbohydrates, such as potatoes.

I've started eating more carbohydrates, even occasionally some white flour products, but stay away from any long-life bread and also anything with sugar. I must say that in some ways I feel stronger eating some carbohydrates - I am not sure if I am imagining this or whether it is true. I read that the glycogen stores can get depleted and people can feel very weak if they cut out carbs too much. However, this, again, seems to completely depend on the person and on how well their body can tolerate and utilise carbohydrates. It seems as if my body can tolerate them a little better than before, weight gain from carbs seems not to be as fast.

There are many white flour products I cannot eat, however, especially anything which is long-life and not freshly baked or stored in the fridge. Some fresh white flour products cause problems as well and some do not. I suspect it has to do with added ingredients, perhaps flour-treatment agents, bleach, sugar, etc.

I found new food intolerances as well, and eliminating these from my diet have made a huge difference to how I feel. I now almost never get the weak, fever-like feeling, unless I eat sugar.

I found out that the 'wake up' coffee, which substitutes guarana for caffeine, also makes me feel weak, just as any form of caffeine does, even in small quantity. I don't seem to be able to tolerate celery at all, which was quite a surprise. This may have been negatively influencing my previous raw food trials and juice fasts. I have had to quit using a certain herbal salt mix I was using, as well as all stock cubes because of this find. Even small amount of celery in the salt gave me strong symptoms. Onken biopot (organic live) natural yoghurt raises my pulse and makes me feel weak: both food intolerance symptoms. Tomatoes and nuts I am not sure about yet, but I suspect that raw tomatoes (at least some varieties) are offending foods, though this does not seem to apply to all tomato sauces, for example. I am experimenting with not eating nuts now, since they seem to make my throat phlegmy, and cashew nuts specifically seem to make me feel weak, and possibly even cause headaches. I unfortunately suspect that blueberries may be a problem too. And if I eat a normal chocolate bar, I get very thick phlegm in my throat, to a point where I can't sleep because I have to try to keep swallowing to clear my throat, with no success. Once I even started worrying that maybe it was my throat swelling up, and not mucus. So I can't have most chocolate bars or candy, etc., but did find one sugar- and dairy-free one in the health food shop which doesn't seem to be too much of a problem, it is made by 'Balance'. Brown rice cakes gave me intolerance symptoms and the usual weak feeling too.

I am not eating cheese almost at all. I have also mostly replaced butter with non-raw coconut oil (tastes better than the raw version). Cheddar and many other cow's cheeses give me intolerance symptoms, whereas at least one type of feta, which is made of sheep's and goat's cheese does not. Blue cheese and goat's cheese may be ok too in terms of food intolerance, however, unfortunately all of these seem to cause mucus, and for this reason I have been avoiding them quite well.

Beer and wine have proven to be extremely problematic for me, as even one beer makes me extremely dehydrated for about 24 hours, and they both also cause negative thoughts and heart palpitations. I suspect it may be a combination of sugar and chemicals in these drinks, and in some cases aluminium from the can may be a contributing factor. But even organic glass-bottled beer proved very problematic. However, interestingly, I have found out that not all alcohol is anywhere near as much of a problem. I can drink spirits with non-sugary mixers fine, and unless I drink too much, I don't have any of the problems described above, and also no hangover. Possibly Cava bubbly wine is ok too, not quite sure yet. This proves, interestingly, that at least in my case alcohol itself may not be the chief culprit but other substances added to the drinks. As clean spirits as possible seem to be fine with me (although these also have chemicals), with a non-sugary mixer (sparkling water), and if possible, plenty of fresh lemon juice to make it even less harmful. Of course eating well before drinking alcohol and drinking water before bedtime help to feel well too.

I still have a blushing problem, and been using foundation cream for job interviews. The cream has been a huge relief, although I don't like the look of it. I am confident, however, that once the toxic metals (copper) are eliminated, once my body gradually gets used to breaking down carbohydrates better, and with the daily exercise habit I currently have, the blushing problems will naturally vanish in time. Also, ice cold drinks or weather seem to make the blushing worse, which goes with what the Chinese doctor is saying about energy imbalances. I think eliminating the suspected fungus infection (aspergillus in the sinuses and lungs) will help as well since these pathogens excrete neurotoxins, which in turn stress the body out. Anti-inflammatory diet all and all will help too, and once the dehydration problems are completely eliminated (they seem to be getting less), then my hormones should return to balance, especially with the help of an alkaline diet and potentially a few other tricks like herbs.

I have been sleeping fairly well. Eliminating more of the food intolerances, as well as the causes of dehydration and heart palpitations (notably sugar), have been key in this. Staying away from sugar and alcohol (and rice, maybe) seems to stop any negative thoughts of guilt, fears, self-pity etc., and even if I am not tired, I can lie in bed thinking happy thoughts. So bed-time has become quite enjoyable and relaxing. Hope it lasts! Key trick may also be ensuring that I tire myself enough during the day, and of course, not to sleep late in the mornings. Angelica essential oil and angelica tea help me to sleep, and valerian tablets helped at some point but seemed to stopped working afterwards.

If I do eat food items that I am intolerant to or that are just difficult to digest, taking digestive enzymes seems to help a lot in most cases, as long as they are taken just before the meal. Taking them after a meal seems to have much less of an effect. I try to take digestive enzymes now throughout the day, sometimes on every meal, and sometimes even between meals, to help break down any rogue proteins that didn't get digested. I have also read recently that digestive enzymes and elimination of food intolerances can help with autism. Perhaps other autoimmune conditions would benefit from these too?

I also recently got a new hair mineral analysis report, I have written a summary here.

In so many ways my health is going to a much better direction. I found an important help to be not sticking to diets and rules dogmatically, but trying to eat quite a varied diet within the limits that my body can at the moment tolerate and what it needs. As you can see, in my experience the solution is much more complicated than whether to eat raw food or not, and gluten-free or dairy-free on their own also would not have solved the riddle of my body's needs. This is a new important realization - trying to find a balance between not eliminating too many food items (to make it difficult to stick to or end up deficient) while still eliminating all the offending foods and those that my body doesn't like for other reasons.

I still have mucus problems with my lungs, throat and sinuses, but as mentioned above, the aspergillus-eliminating methods are working well so far and I hope that this problem will be history too, as well.

I occasionally get headaches still, but less, and they may be linked to cold draught on my neck from the windows while sleeping, not wearing glasses, possible nut allergy, and/or certain posture while working at the computer. Muscle stiffness of the neck and tension in the jaw are related problems, and they come and go. Funnily, sometimes eating a little bit of sugar seems to help to lift the headache, and sometimes glasses, hot water bottle, exercise, stretching and massage help too. Today I am headache-free again but I cannot conclude yet what the ultimate cause is. Somehow I suspect, however strangely, that it is not just muscle tension (caused by stress or lack of exercise) but that there is another causative factor too. I suspect this because the jaw tension and neck tension seem to come at once with the headache, as if something else, like nuts, was causing all the symptoms at the same time. All this is to be confirmed, however, as I don't know the final truth of this yet.

I have also began meditation, and meditated a full one hour on two separate days so far, and 45 mins another day. I believe that this will help me to be more in control of my thoughts and moods, focus and live in the moment better, and consequently, enjoy life more and be much less stressed. It is quite enjoyable to just observe your own thoughts and visions coming to your head for a while, although I suspect it won't always feel as easy as it did last time. The Chinese doctor says that it is very important to strengthen the mind through meditation and visualization, like you would strengthen the body through exercise.

In any case, I am very happy that the mystery of my health is showing good signs of unfolding. In conclusion, these seem to have been the most beneficial approaches to improve my health so far:
  • Eliminating food intolerances with the pulse test - of crucial importance.
  • Partly eliminating the sinus infection (suspected aspergillus) with blood electrification, ozonated water and sinus rinses. Chinese herbs and exercise seem to help as well.
  • Eating enough alkaline foods (seems to reduce menstrual pain because it reduces inflammation - to be confirmed). Note that eating too many alkaline foods can cause a metallic taste in the mouth like I had during the green juice fast.
  • Hair mineral analysis - I suspect that this has been a huge help, even though it is a long-term method and in some ways symptoms can get a lot worse before getting better, especially when it comes to toxic metal elimination. Hair mineral analysis is in my experience not an easy way to eliminate undesired symptoms quickly, although especially the supplementation can sometimes have quick beneficial effects.
  • Exercise. I underestimated the importance of this before, at some point trusting the power of raw foods alone. But especially for raw foodists exercise seems to be of crucial importance, to ensure that the body gets enough 'heat' energy. In my case, exercise helps to keep my body warm, helps eliminate mucus, and I think in the long-term will give me more confidence as well, as it has done before. It is the best stress-busting method too - if I start getting angry or frustrated or stressed-out about something these days, I go for a run and feel much better.
  • Staying away from sugar and many processed foods has been extremely helpful in so many ways, and I suspect this is not only true for my body but many other people's as well.
  • Avoiding ice and chilled foods and drinks, keeping warm, including warm foods in the diet. For reasons of energy balance and based on my experience also, this seems to be very important for me at this point in time, though maybe not forever.

Update, the Next Day

An important thing to note is that I am still tired during and after my menstrual period. I seem to need sometimes more than 10 hours of sleep during this time, as well as feel out of energy and lazy during the day. This is one of the challenges I still need to overcome. I will try to combat this by eating alkaline foods, greens, burdock root in tea for iron, kapikachhu for general hormone balance, as well as movement and exercise, plenty of water, antioxidants and ozone water. Maybe the liver needs some support as well during this time.

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