Raw Food 2016

I am excited to return to eating raw foods a year after my last raw food attempt failed quite badly. But I have made much progress on my health journey and I now feel very optimistic about being able to make this - very specific kind of - raw food diet work. This raw food 2016 diary will hopefully be the turning point in my life, where I develop a comfortable, very healthy, and affordable long-term eating plan, which will not require lot of food prep and therefore is suitable for my (still) busy lifestyle.

raw food pasta
Raw courgette 'pasta', with raw tomato sauce, recipe here.

This time I will not have many strict rules, I will set some guidelines according to what I believe will work, but will be open to adjusting anything along the way, according to how I feel. I won't be 100% raw, but will incorporate pasteurized juices and non-raw nuts for convenience, as well as boiled herbs, steamed vegetables and soups with very clean ingredients for easy-to-digest nutrients. I will aim to be 50%+ raw, but extremely healthy. The key difference between this and my previous diet trials will be that there will be no set length for this diet - I will seek to make it a long-term lifestyle for the first time.

What I learned from my previous diet trials - improvements for 2016

During my previous diet trials I've made the following discoveries:

  1. It is important to measure one's pulse to determine any food allergies/ intolerances, according to the advice given in 'The Pulse Test' book. If you haven't read that article, I highly recommend you do - it has been of immense help on my health journey.
  2. I have to avoid celery, carrots, preservatives, and a few other foods which I am intolerant of.
  3. It is crucial, especially for me, to ensure that I get enough protein on every meal (having eaten too low protein for many years). I feel weak very quickly if I don't get enough protein.
  4. Dairy does not seem to suit me, even in its raw form. At least cow's cheese seems to give me spots and mucus. Since I have by now gone for long periods without eating dairy, whenever I return to eating it, I can feel and smell the dairy on my skin, and also notice the smell/taste in my mouth for long after eating it.
  5. I will try to approach this diet from an abundance mind-set, trying to have as varied diet as possible, while aiming for the best health possible.
  6. Listening to your body's messages is crucial. If you don't feel well, don't just put it down to detox, try to figure out what is going on.
  7. I have a huge problem with trying to digest (insoluble) fiber from raw vegetables. I therefore cannot eat salad and many vegetables that I want to eat might better be eaten in lightly steamed or lightly boiled form, or juiced. Blending might help too - to be confirmed.
  8. I have to continuously work towards eliminating the rest of the aspergillus stealth infection that remains in my sinuses. Part of it has been eliminated (quite dramatically, as you will see if you follow the links) but not all. Oregano oil steam breathed in, neti pot nasal rinses with warm salt water, ozonated water, and blood electrification seem to be the main tools to fight this stubborn mold infection.

My previous health complaints fully or partly resolved:

  1. Headaches: Were mainly tension headaches, but also linked to eyesight (needing glasses), eating difficult-to-digest foods (fiber), stress, holding my head in a forward position too much, etc. Eliminated with 1) regular stretching, 2) adjusting computer screen to hold neck up straight and avoiding too much crouching over the mobile phone, 3) using a hammer (!) to self-massage very stuck muscles on my shoulders and upper back, 4) epsom salt baths with quiet reflection time, to wind down at the end of the day. Note: I still suspect that some foods may cause more muscle tension in my neck, sounds strange but it would seem to make sense in my daily life - to be confirmed.
  2. Cough: A friend of mine from childhood recently reminded me that I used to always clear my throat/ cough a little even as a teenager, so I might have actually had the cough all my life. It seems to be caused by 1) dairy, and 2) alcohol. In addition, it may be linked to indigestion and acid reflux (which sometimes has very few symptoms). I wonder how long I've had the aspergillus infection and whether that is linked to the cough. In any case, the cough usually gets eliminated when I eat 'clean' for a while.
  3. Red eyes: These were at some point a fairly constant problem for me, but at points my eyes get clear and bright. The solution is either one or more of the following things: 1) being well-hydrated, eliminating anything dehydrating (e.g. alcohol, sugar, stress, tiredness, negative emotions). The dehydration is also linked to liver health, so strong liver helps. 2) Eating enough protein and iron. 3) Eliminating any infections in the ears, nose and throat as those are linked to the eyes.
  4. Dehydration: I used to feel very thirsty even though I drank a lot of water. It now seems that this was due to eating too much difficult-to-digest (insoluble) fiber in the form of raw vegetables. (I can't eat much salad anymore.)
  5. Sugar/ carbohydrate intolerance: This was either linked to 1) aspergillus infection, which is now partly cleared - I can tolerate fruit again, and/or 2) eating too many low-carbohydrate diets - it is possible that they cause sugar/carbohydrate intolerance.
  6. Painful menstrual period and associated problems: These seem to clear best on juice fast and raw food diet, but it also seems that iron supplement and protein-rich diet help.
  7. Tiredness: Complicated problem, in my case this was linked to 1) food intolerances, 2) too busy lifestyle, 3) financial stress, frustration about my work, 4) generally not feeling in control of my life (such things can be extremely tiring and draining), 5) chronic sinus infection, 6) alcohol (major one! even a little alcohol can sap your energy levels), 7) possibly dairy and wheat consumption, 8) too little outdoor exercise, 9) less than ideal sleeping conditions, 10) feeling stuck in life, 11) protein deficiency (major one), 12) possible iron deficiency, 13) eating too few calories or too few carbohydrates, etc.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Day 1, Raw Food 2016

16th January 2016

My weight varies between 57-59kg (post-holidays-weight).

This diet will not be a set length, I will instead endeavour to make it long-term and record this diary as much as I can, if not on a daily basis. I am busy with studies at the moment so it may be too much of a challenge to write everyday. I will try to write everyday, however, and will in any case make sure that any key realizations and updates get reported.

I had a green juice for breakfast, bananas sliced length-wise and peanut butter spread on top as a snack, Tesco pasteurized fruit juice (pink grapefruit and tropical), lemon grass tea, spriralized courgette (zucchini) with raw cherry tomato sauce (cherry tomatoes, oregano, 2 dates, salt, cayenne pepper).

The raw courgette (with tomato sauce) sat very heavy in my stomach and didn't seem to digest well. I took two digestive enzyme tablets after eating (better taken just before eating) but still became very thirsty in a way that drinking water doesn't seem to make better. I drank a lot of water that night nevertheless.

In the morning I also took many supplements: B-vitamin complex, two pouches of iron-rich water, D3 vitamin spray, and two dropperfuls of rhodiola tincture.

For dinner I had a can of kidney beans, for protein and iron, with olive oil, salt, pepper and balsamic vinegar for flavour. They taste very good. Obviously not raw but I've noticed that eating these makes me feel good so they - and other beans - will be and important part of this diet.

This will be a diet of abundance - where I try to find a very healthy and very varied way of eating, where I have many lovely foods to eat while feeling extremely healthy and happy, not stressed.

The pub downstairs was having a party and the noise kept me up until 1am approximately. Then I couldn't sleep but realized that it was too hot indoors with the electric heating and opened the windows to let some cool air in. (I found out later that it snowed this night.) The cool air helped me go to sleep very quickly.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Day 2, Raw Food 2016

17th January 2016, Sunday

Woke up a 9am, got out of bed at 9.30am. Felt quite good this morning, a little lighter than usual. I feel tempted to put it down to not having eaten dairy or wheat (or gluten) yesterday.

Late breakfast: Green juice: Kale, iceberg lettuce, cucumber, courgette (zucchini), ginger, lemon and pink lady apple (both juiced without peel to avoid wax). My pulse raised a little bit after eating these, but I don't think it was enough to count as intolerance. Need to double-check though because the pulse raises less with liquids than with solid foods to indicate intolerance.

12.15pm: I learned that I have an intolerance to peanut butter! Very annoying, as I was planning to use peanut butter (made only of peanuts, no added ingredients) as one of my high-protein comfort foods. My standing pulse before eating it was 67bpm, and soon after eating the standing pulse ranged between 76-87bpm. A little later, under an hour after eating, my standing pulse was 98-90bpm. I took my pulse sitting down also, after having sat down still for 5 minutes, and it was only 70-72 bpm. But your standing and sitting pulses are very different, and my heart does feel pounding and I do have that slight nervous feeling in my upper body as usual with food intolerances, so I think the verdict is right.

The only thing I will need to test again, is if it was lemongrass tea that caused it instead of the peanut butter, since I drank that sometime before eating the peanut butter with apple slices. I'm pretty sure apples are safe but will retest.

peanut butter food intolerance
Food intolerance: Is peanut butter the culprit?

4.10pm: I haven't eaten anything since the peanut butter apple and been feeling fine. No cravings, no hunger really. Just drank a pint of ozonated water and will wait for 30mins before eating my cherry tomato salad (cherry tomatoes, olive oil, salt, pepper) - I want to test the tomato and see if I am intolerant of it since I've been suspecting it for a long time.

4.44pm: Testing cherry tomatoes (bought from Tesco): Before eating: sitting pulse 68bpm, raising to 87bpm when standing up, becoming 79bpm standing pulse. (I am using the 'Heart Rate' app and 'StandUp' test addition to it.)

5.20pm: Slight beginnings of a headache, barely noticable, neck feels a little stiff and jaw a little 'tense', as if I'm gonna start biting them together soon.

5.33pm: Very very slight chest ache, tiny bit itchy hands, don't feel upbeat or light anymore, but don't feel bad either...

6pm: Sitting pulse has remained steady until now, but I also get the feeling where I can't fill my lungs properly now (cleared soon after). Standing pulse, however, is more interesting: 89-90bpm, so clearly more than 8bpm raise compared to before eating standing pulse (79bpm). I will keep monitoring the sitting pulse, however, since the standing pulse is measured soon after standing up both times (using StandUp test).

It may be that drinking ozonated water half an hour before eating the tomatoes eliminated the intolerance symptoms (or the enzymes taken earlier today). I will retest next time I eat tomatoes.

6.08pm: 71bpm sitting down.

6.13pm: 73bpm sitting down. My heart feels pounding now, uncomfortable feeling in the chest.

6.20pm: I don't feel well, heart pounding, slight headache, eyes feel strange: a bit watery and slight burning sensation. Pulse = 69bpm. Even if the pulse doesn't show food intolerance reaction I will stop eating tomatoes for a while and retest.

6.30pm: Sitting pulse is not raising any further, standing pulse stays at 90bpm. I feel quite uncomfortable, however, with a pounding heart. Pretty sure there is an intolerance/ allergy to these Tesco's cherry tomatoes, but the pulse may be held down by the digestive enzymes or the ozonated water. I will test again another time, now taking more enzymes to feel better. Will conclude that tomatoes don't suit me, however.

raw food 2016 tomato salad
Simple but tasty cherry tomato salad, just with salt, pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.

Took "thyroid calming" tincture by HerbPharm, this usually stops my heart palpitations quickly, let's see if it works this time. Ingredients: motherwort leaf and flower, cactus stem, lemon balm leaf and flowering top. It seems to be helping, about 1-2 minutes after taking it, the pounding heart is calming down. (It calmed down a little bit but kept pounding for a while, less badly.)

Hyperthyroidism

I also tested once (over a year ago) for subclinical hyperthyroidism in blood tests - basically meaning that my thyroid was overactive enough to need monitoring, but not overactive enough to need medication. I wouldn't have made much out of this, especially since the doctor said that these tests are very sensitive and results are easily affected by many things. However, since my symptoms match hyperthyroidism well (heart palpitations, anxiety, difficulty in handling stress, etc.), and because I didn't use to have these problems, I considered this an interesting finding.

And when I found out that the 'thyroid calming tincture' stops the heart palpitations very effectively, I have since then considered myself to have a mild case of overactive thyroid, even though the second test the doctor did came back normal, and even though I haven't taken blood tests since.

So now there seems to be a link with the pounding heart and tomatoes. This is interesting. So the heart doesn't beat faster, just harder somehow, enough to feel uncomfortable. Or it could be that the heart beats normally but the blood veins are constricted so the beat feels more heavy and less comfortable. Not sure what exactly is going on but the problem is something along those lines. And since "thyroid calming tincture" helps, it got me looking for information on a possible link between hyperthyroidism and tomatoes.

I found an interesting article on Naturalnews.com, entitled: Prevent and Treat Hyperthyroidism Naturally. It made a link between allergies and hyperthyroidism, mentioning tomato and nightshade plant family allergies as two of the typical ones. More explanation on hyperthyroidism here.

hyperthyroid herbs
Hyperthyroidism - herbal tincture.

* * *

7.30pm: Made cashew nut butter, out of cashew nuts which were soaked for 2-3 hours in ozonated water, so as to kill any mold that might be living in them. Apparently mold in dried foods, especially nuts, is very commonplace. The nut butter had just cashews nuts, water, olive oil, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper. Yummy. I then ate some on top of slightly unripe banana slices. Feeling better now than before.

9.37pm: Started having cravings for something, wasn't sure what. I thought the cashew nut butter would be good to eat but I didn't have any crackers or bread that would be raw and gluten-free. Then I realized that kidney beans would satisfy the need - and they taste really good, just what I needed. I was also contemplating having bread or eggs before... I drank some fruit juice earlier and it didn't help to satisfy that out-of-balance feeling, like my body needed something. But now I think that I was craving for protein! This makes a lot of sense: perhaps all the cravings for wheat products during my previous diet trials have been protein cravings, since wheat has a fair bit of protein in it! And the same can be said for cheese cravings and cheese!

So I'm now eating a bowl of kidney beans (from a carton, with no added ingredients) with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and a fair bit of salt. Protein usually satisfies my hunger and cravings well for a longer time and I wonder if it will do this time as well.

11pm: Feel very thirsty, also have a bit of gas, which I usually don't have. Is yesterday's fiber from the courgette still affecting me? I have the same stuck feeling in my throat and upper chest that I would get from eating a fiber-rich salad, plus the dehydration. I wonder if the tomatoes were too fibrous (I ate a lot of them), as apparently they have both, insoluble and soluble fiber in them.

Went to sleep around 1am.

Other things eaten today: Pasteurized tropical fruit and pink grapefruit juices (from Tesco), 30,000 iu of vitamin D3 spray.

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Day 3, Raw Food 2016

Monday

I woke up around 5.30am and the dim light in the room seemed slighly blue - not sure if it was from some lights out on the street or the beginnings of the sunrise (the sunrise time today was at 8am). It looked nice but what is more, everything looked a little more 'radiant' than usual. I quickly went back to sleep though, and woke up properly around 9.30am.

Morning weight: 58kg
Morning pulse, while lying in bed: 62bpm.

I feel good this morning, I think I'm already getting benefits of two days of eating well. I suspect the main benefits are from being dairy- and gluten-free, as well as from eating wholefoods and nothing processed or chemical. My body feels balanced, I feel a bit upbeat, and my eyes are a little clearer and I look a little healthier than two days ago. A good start!

I didn't eat anything until midday, wasn't that hungry, just drank water. I did some quick burpees, push ups, yoga moves and stretches, then took a bath and washed my hair with conditioner only to avoid harsh SLS's (sodium laureth sulfates). It seems to clean the hair well.

12.15pm: Heart rate: 63bpm, before eating. Ate some apple slices (skin removed, because it's difficult to digest hard fiber), with home-made cashew nut butter (as yesterday).

I feel quite cold now, and the cold cashew nut butter (straight from the fridge) didn't help. I got a cough after eating it as well - it could either be that I shouldn't eat cold foods (as suggested by the Chinese Doctor) without chewing them well, or that my throat is just clearing.

I still have these health complaints, since before starting this diet: congested sinuses and lungs, cough (it came back during the holidays from eating cheese and drinking alcohol), sometimes red eyes, water retention regularly (puffy face, possibly linked to inflammation), and sometimes a little bloated abdomen (not nearly as bad as before, though). I feel confident that these get resolved during this diet, however.

My sinuses and throat feel like they are clearing a bit. I don't have the heavy feeling anymore from eating all the fiber yesterday. My energy is good but it is the cold time of the year and it is not always warm enough in this old house we are living in (single-glazing, draughty windows, and brick walls with no insulation). On the other hand, when we do get it warm, the electric heating dries out the air and makes it less comfortable, making your head feel less than fresh. So unfortunately (in terms of sustainable energy use) it is a matter of heating the place, opening the windows to ventilate, heating again, etc. In addition, warm clothes, hot tea, hot baths and warming your hands under hot water have proven to be very helpful. Exercise is a useful way to warm the body but often not practical throughout the day.

It is important for raw foodists to think about their body temperature. If you start feeling cold, get warm immediately, one way or another. According to Chinese Medicine, cold foods are very harsh on the stomach. So try to eat your foods at room temperature or warmer. If you choose to be 100% raw, make sure you get enough heat from sunshine, hot baths, saunas, exercise, warm teas (if you drink them), wearing warm clothes, soaking your hands and/or feet in hot water (surprisingly effective way to warm yourself up). Chinese doctor also said that animals are able to eat raw food because they are constantly in movement and therefore create lots of heat energy throughout the day, whereas modern human lifestyle is much less active.

The temperature outside is currently about 2-4 degrees Celcius (35-39 Fahrenheit degrees), at night dropping to -2-0 degrees (28-32 F).

12.46pm: Pulse 66bpm before eating. 1pm: Eating pea soup. Felt so much warmer after eating the soup - it just goes to prove how big part food plays in heating the body. I did get red face as well, however, not momentarily but for a longer time, which is somewhat uncomfortable.

The pea soup was a slightly amended version of this recipe here: Split Pea Soup. The ingredients were: Dried split green peas, soaked for 12 hours and rinsed, water, red onion, garlic, ginger, red chilli, cayenne pepper, curry powder, turmeric, paprika, bay leaves, cardamom pods, salt, bicarbonate soda (1/2 teasp, to soften the peas), lemon juice, cinnamon, fresh coriander (cilantro) from frozen, cacao butter, fennel seeds, mustard seeds. (Note: Green peas are rich in protein.)

The fact that the body needs warmth, and is used to getting some of it from food, is the main reason why it is easier to be a raw foodist if you live in a hot country, or are an athlete. But as long as you stay warm by other means, and don't eat chilled foods, I believe it is completely possible to be a raw foodist in colder climates during winter. That is partly what this diet trial is all about, even though I'm high raw and not 100%, which makes it easier.

2pm: Again, no high rise in pulse after eating the soup but my face is still red, an hour later, and my chest hurts a little bit. My resting/ sitting pulse raised by 7bpm whereas 8bpm is the limit for food intolerance. Mustard is a typical allergen so I suspect that might be causing me problems. Or it could have been the red onion which is a nightshade family plant.

After eating the soup, the balanced, good feeling from the morning went away, and I also got a little watery eyes and achy shoulders/ neck from stiff muscles. I suspect there was something in the soup that didn't suit me, however, I cannot rule out the possibility that either the vitamin D3 spray or the cashew nut butter was the culprit.

Other things eaten today: Pasteurized tropical fruit juice (from Tesco), 30,000 iu of vitamin D3 spray.

3pm: Feel quite normal again, a bit sleepy. Took two sachets of Spatone iron water, mixed in with pasteurized grapefruit juice. Each sachet has approximately 5mg of iron. Also took two dropperfuls of rhodiola tincture.

5pm: Had a smoothie with blackberries from frozen, a sprinkle of milk thistle seeds, hemp seeds, soaked cashew nuts, cashew nut butter, 1 tbsp wheatgrass powder, water, some boiling water to warm it up slightly, linseeds, dried blueberries.

6pm: I feel slightly nauseous - I often get this feeling after drinking a smoothie with frozen berries. Maybe I just drink too much smoothie too quickly (this one was 1.5 pints).

I remember getting stomach ache and nausea from berry smoothies before.

8pm: Took two digestive enzymes some time back but I'm not feeling too well now, the middle of the stomach, just above the belly button feels uncomfortable, also the chest and throat, and I feel a bit nauseous ever since I drank the smoothie. I don't normally have a problem with a smaller spirulina smoothie, even when it has seeds mixed in, but something about these berries seems to be a problem... (mixed frozen berries)

9.30pm now, started feeling a little bit ill some time ago: throat ache and flu-like/fever-like feeling. Ate a banana and a peeled apple with cashew nut butter (home-made) and feel a bit better now. I have a tense jaw too, however.

10.10pm: Did boiling water vapour breathing with drops of eucalyptus and oregano essential oils. Also breathed the oregano oil in straight from the bottle and drank two drops in water. Feel better.

11.40pm: Sleepy now, drinking cinnamon and anise tea. Went to bed at 00.30am.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Day 4, Raw Food 2016

Tuesday 19th January

Woke up at 10.30am. I sleep better when eating this way, not sure if it has to do with 1) gluten-free, 2) dairy-free, or 3) lack of fried food - maybe it's a combination of all. Plus the fact that I'm eating about 50% raw. It cannot be just the lack of alcohol or lack of caffeine alone since I have gone for long periods of time before without those. But now I feel better.

I slept well, woke up feeling nicely 'warm and fuzzy', literally, in my body. I also feel quite positive and optimistic this morning. My weight has dropped to 55kg - since the weight-loss is so quick I think it's due to losing water-weight. This would possibly point at inflammation in my body, which is now probably getting less. I have left out gluten, dairy, and eggs which have all been linked to inflammation.

My nose is still quite congested and dry, mucussy.

11am: Breakfast: Cinnamon and star anise tea. It felt a bit too strong on an empty stomach. Got a little bit of an uncomfortable, nauseous feeling, less upbeat and a bit anxious. I wonder if at times when I get nervous and anxious it can be linked to stomach upset? There is neurotransmitter activity in the stomach so this may well be the case. There may be acid reflux as well as I kind of feel like something wants to come up my thoat.

Ate a banana, drinking a pint of smoothie: spirulina (1 tbsp), wheatgrass (1 tbsp), 1 peeled lemon, 1 tbsp linseed & dried blueberry mix, water.

Did oregano oil and eucalyptus steam breathing.

1pm: Had a peeled apple, sliced, with home-made cashew nut butter.

Sat with a window open with sun on my skin for 1/2 hours - a rare treat, the sky's been mostly overcast in the last couple of months. (And the good thing about sash windows is that you can open just the top of them :))

2pm: Ate some pea soup again (as yesterday). I don't want to waste food so took two enzymes and had a bowlful. Soon after I started to feel a bit anxious and now (25 mins later) I have anxiety sitting on my chest and my heart is starting to pound heavier. Took 1g of GABA (4 capsules) and 2 dropperfuls of 'thyroid calm' tincture. If they don't help I will take valerian. (Note that the enzymes were probably not the best quality: 'Nature's Plus', quite cheap ones.

Felt better and more calm soon after but by 3.10pm was still not back to feeling as good as this morning.

Tuesday evening, I didn't write down the details, but I probably had more apple and cashew nut butter, as well as kidney beans.

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Day 5, Raw Food 2016

Wednesday

Woke up feeling good and my face is starting to look much more fresh. But I feel tired. Slept very little because I had slept in too late the morning before. Had to go to work a bit sleep deprived (I'm teaching at the university on Wednesdays while studying).

Long day of teaching at the university. Had spirulina smoothie for breakfast: 1 tbsp spirulina, water, linseed and dried blueberry mix, water.

In the evening my boyfriend drove to London to pick me up. I was very tired and had pain on the right side of my lower back. It felt like pain to do with inner organs, not bones or muscles. It started in the late afternoon and continued until maybe 10pm the latest. Then it quickly dissipated. I think it was detoxification pain, I seem to remember having the same thing before. Probably it had to do with kidney cleansing (judging by a chart which shows which inner organs reflect pain to which part of the back).

Ate at a nice pub in London: seabass with butter, caper sauce, small potatoes, small beetroots. I battled with myself, trying to figure out what my long-term approach will be to eating out. I decided that I shouldn't avoid eating out with people but I should try to order the healthiest thing on the menu. I think this is the end of veganism for me this time, as I don't see a reason why I shouldn't eat fish. I will have to experiment later whether it takes away from the raw & vegan lifestyle. But I did regret later having the butter (and maybe the low-quality table salt) because I got a cough straight away and next day I had bags under my eyes, as well as red eyes & more dull-looking eyes again. It is possible that it was caused by the potatoes as well, which some say are inflammation-causing - nightshades - or simply the lack of water drunken. Next morning I had a cough and more phlegmy throat also.

Later note: I'm almost certain that these problems were caused by the butter. Dairy seems to affect me quite strongly.

Drinks: Orange juice from concentrate, sparkling water (acidic).

Went to Stokie Wholefoods, bought teas and 2x raw cakes ('cheeze' cake and tiramisu cake). They tasted too much like coconut oil. Ate a raw cheese cake and drank Celestial Seasonings' Sleepytime tea. Also had Tesco tropical juice, not from concentrate.

I had shortness of breath.

I wonder if going to London and working in an old building affected me negatively this day?

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Day 6, Menstrual Period Started

Thursday

Woke up at 9.30am. Drank Celestial Seasonings' lemon tea and ate raw tiramisu cake. Asda's strawberry and kiwi juice, not from concentrate.

Felt nice, 'warm and fuzzy' again, literally, when still lying in bed, although I have many things running through my mind which I could easily get anxious about - 'school' work, basically.

Had lots of dreams, slept quite well generally but not quite enough.

Lunch @ 1pm: Kidney beans with balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt, black pepper. Unsoaked mixed nuts as snacks. Water. Grapefruit juice.

I have a deadline on Monday so not much time to report on this diary but anything important I will make sure to note down.

Feeling a bit anxious, my hands feel a bit shaky. Took one iron sachet, thyroid calming tincture, 2x GABA, Celestial Seasonings' 'tension calmer' tea. Nose feels congested, very slight headache and neck tension - probably because of electric heating, lack of fresh air, lack of stretching and exercise.

Took 30,000 IU of vitamin D3 spray.

I don't dare to stop and go running or take time off to stretch because I have lots to do for my university deadline, and I haven't started working on it today yet, as I had other things to take care of.

3.15pm: Pink grapefruit juice, one avocado with salt & olive oil, spirulina smoothie (lemon, 1 tbsp spirulina, wheatgrass powder, 1 tbsp bee pollen, water). Slight headache.

I started feeling a little bit out of balance, couldn't figure out what I was craving. Thought it was fat and ate an avocado, then realized that I was craving bread or a croissant. Drank fruit juice for carbohydrates. Then I thought that there might be amino acids in wheat that are not in kidney beans, so I drank spirulina smoothie. My menses might be starting soon as well, get slight feelings to that effect.

Actually, my breakfast might have been too fatty and brought me out of balance.

I start feeling more and more as if my menses are starting. Headachy, stomach ache, tired, bad taste in my mouth - only slight feelings. Also I feel tired from not enough sleep in the last two nights in total.

4.30pm: Had to get up and do some stretches, exercises, and go for a walk outside while leaving the windows open. Was getting a headache (been sitting at the computer for a few hours now)... maybe because of the dry, heated, stuffy air indoors.

I've also had a throat-ache most of the day, and now start getting fever-like symptoms. Walking outside, I started to feel better, and ventilating indoors helps too.

My menses started at 5pm. No stomach ache yet and no other bad symptoms. No more headache.

No more cravings, although all the unbalanced feelings had probably to do with the menses.

Weight: 59kg.

Drank some Tesco tropical juice.

6.40pm: I feel nauseous (and cold) because of the menses. Running a bath. I think the pain is starting now. I feel quite out of balance and my mouth has a really annoying taste. My lower abdomen feels bloated, my face is bloated (but not as much as some other times), I feel crumpy and concentration on my work is becoming difficult.

I'm determined to stay healthy now despite constant cravings and a constant feeling that I should eat something, not knowing what. If I say feeling eating healthy, I will feel better tomorrow, I think, or at least the following day.

The menses also seem to make me have anxiety and heaviness in my chest, lower chest and above the belly button, just by the lowest ribs in the middle. I feel tired and irritable, and have gas.

Drank another sachet of iron supplement water.

7.20pm: Very hot bath made me feel warm again but the pain is starting and I'm beginning to feel very unwell. Took 2x ibuprofen pain killers. I bit into them (liquid ones) to try to make them act quicker - and they are disgusting. Very acidic, feel like they burn my mouth and a horrid taste.

I wonder if I didn't eat potatoes and butter yesterday, which have both been said to be inflammatory, whether I would have got away with no pain today.

Had to lie down to wait for the painkillers to take effect, and ended up going to bed for the night. The painkillers were somehow different from usual, thicker skin, bought from a one-pound-shop. I suspect they were fakes.

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Day 7, Menses Day 2

Friday

Woke up at 8am. No pain.

Drank fruit juice: pink grapefruit, orange, passion fruit, etc.

9.25pm: Eating soup. Made with broccoli, courgette, red pepper and steeped in boiling water for a while. With salt, pepper, coconut oil (not raw), grated ginger. A bit of lemon would have been a nice addition.

Did a few stretches and exercises, drank two sachets of iron water and grapefruit juice.

11.05pm: Very loose stools, bordering on diarrhea. I'm happy that I've made it this far today without painkillers - usually for the first two days I'm in a lot of pain (except during juice fasts, raw food diets, etc., when the pain goes - see this report: Overcoming Menstrual Pain). Last month the pain and the associated uncomfort was really bad though.

11.30am: Took the first pain killer for the day. Sitting at the computer brings the pain back but I'm working on a deadline so no choice.

11:50am: Second pain killer. Pain is getting worse, just got out of the bath.

2pm: The pain killers took ages to take effect and only now I'm pain-free. I did fall asleep for a little while in the end. I think the pain killers (or the pain/inflammation itself) make me tired and want to sleep.

2.30pm: Strong sugar cravings, not satisfied by fruit juice, ate: two dates, 2 teasp of molasses sugar, one apple peeled.

5.40pm: Had one licorice bar, Panda. Ingredients: molasses syrup, wheat flour, licorice extract, natural flavouring (aniseed oil). Annoyingly I only realized that it had wheat after eating. I got a cough from eating it too, which is interesting, it may be wheat/gluten at least partly causing it, though I don't remember coughing after eating croissants in the past.

Eating oat-cakes with home-made black-bean paste (ingredients: black beans, salt, pepper, olive oil, water). Oat cake ingredients: wholegrain oats, palm fruit oil, sea salt, sodium bicarbonate (= raising agent).

I thought that I will have to have some crackers that I can eat if I'm going to have this lifestyle long-term. Testing these. Don't like the flavour though, they taste like soda bicarbs.

Oats can have traces of gluten but the grain itself doesn't have it, it's just from the processing facility.

Almost full moon today, fuller than yesterday.

Slight headache at 6.55pm.

8.25pm: Had to get some whiskey and sparkling water to continue studies. Tired, a bit bored, and feel out of balance because of the menses. Self-medication.

Ate some home-made vegetable curry which has a tiny bit of stock cube (celery) and potatoes, cauliflower, chillies, etc. Tasted so good. Fried food though. Potato might be inflammatory.

Went to bed at 1.30am. Drank juice of 2 lemons in water before bed to alkalize.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Day 8, Menses Day 3

Saturday, 23rd January 2016

Woke up at 9am. Pulse in bed 65bpm - lower morning pulse would be better. But I feel well this morning and I slept well. 7.5 hours seems enough. But I don't have the same warm energy vibe feeling I had the few previous days.

Slight stomach ache and discomfort still, but most other symptoms have gone by now.

Breakfast: Tesco tropical fruit juice, some red grapes, spirulina smoothie (2 lemons, 1 tbsp spirulina, 2 tbsp linseed and dried blueberry mix, water. 30,000 IU of vitamin D3 spray. 2 sachets of iron.

10.50am: Just got out of a hot bath, feel tired.

Lunch: oat cakes, blackbean paste, grapes. Feel quite good. No more belly ache at 1.20pm. Drank fruit juice and took vitamin B complex.

Ate 2x Alpro soya dark chocolate desserts which are vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free. Full of sugar though. These caused my face to go red again afterwards.

I'm too busy on a deadline today to prepare food or to eat well.

Later ate a small can of kidney beans but annoying realized that they were in tomato sauce. Ate it anyway but took enzymes.

Drank whiskey in the evening with sparkling water.

Juice of two lemons before bed. Did't eat enough this day. Went to bed at 2am.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Day 9

Sunday

Woke up at 9.15am, after seven hours of sleep. Feel tired from drinking alcohol and I have a cough and my face is puffy.

I think staying 100% raw would be easy if I didn't have a busy lifestyle. Now this diet experiment has failed, I feel.

I have to reassess and figure out if there is a way of always prepping simple-to-make, quick foods for the week ahead, and stay 100% raw. Then I have to figure out what vegan cooked food items I will include in.

Eating porridge for breakfast, made with organic soya milk, oats, salt and olive oil. Not bad.

Got hungry, didn't eat anything until 3pm, too busy working.

Ate a few grapes and cooked four eggs. Not vegan but they would have been wasted otherwise. Don't want to waste food, bought them before this diet started. Four boiled eggs with oatcakes, olive oil, salt, a few red grapes.

Drinking whiskey with sparkling water in the evening. Deadline tomorrow. Went to bed at 11.30pm.

***

There was a long gap in notes, fell off the diet. From here on my notes are not daily, and not as detailed, I just noted down whenever there was something important to report. I think for a long-term diet and lifestyle change that type of reporting makes more sense.

Friday, 29th January, 2016

Something made me feel very out of breath and not able to breathe deep...

  • unsoaked cashew nuts?
  • B12 vitamin spray?
  • D3 vitamin spray?
  • red grapes?
  • fried eggs?
  • something I ate yesterday?

I had pizza two days ago. I think I may be getting a longer-lasting reaction to cheese, especially since I hadn't eaten it for ages before that.

I also think the unhulled sesame seed paste (tahini) was too fibrous for me. Ate tahini made from hulled sesame seeds later without problems.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Saturday, 30th January

Woke up at 9.30am. Pulse in bed: 67bpm. Took hemp protein powder for the first time since long time yesterday. I've been avoiding it because it's extracted and not wholefood, and because I thought it gave me a headache before. But the headache may have been caused by something else - retesting it now.

11.30am: hemp protein powder - it's safe, no intolerance reaction, happy!

Eating unsoaked cashew nuts.

11.38am: Drinking Yogi Tea Chocotea.

1.30pm: Ate Trek protein bar (has peanuts, but is gluten and dairy free). Felt fine afterwards.

Smoothie: Pack of fresh raspberries, 30g more hemp protein powder (2 scoops), soya milk, 1/2 tbsp hulled tahini (sesame seed paste), water, crushed linseed, dried blueberry mix. Blended in Vitamix. Drinking slowly through the afternoon. (I have to stop trying to down smoothies quickly and which seems to cause stomach ache/ nausea.)

Felt fine after eating unsoaked cashew nuts this time.

Ate two apples without skins and one sachet of iron water.

Nice and sunny today - it's starting to look/ feel like spring but it's still cold.

Felt a bit unwell after the smoothie - in the same way as after the big berry smoothie. Maybe I should give berries a break for a while - I used to eat huge quantities of them during my earlier study years - in frozen form. Maybe I overdid it.

4.10pm: Feel a bit cold too, and burbing. Will drink Digestee tea.

6.10pm: Testing eating oat cakes with Granovita spicy Mexican pate. Ingredients include a bit of tomato puree and tomato paste. I just feel like eating something solid and pasty, not water-rich like fruit.

7.20pm: Had two sweet potates because I had a craving for them. Felt like I needed to eat something warm. Ate them with olive oil, salt, pepper. Zapped my sinuses and forehead with a homemade magnetic pulser. (It just gives you one zap at a time, not continuous zaps like the one sold by Sota Instruments.)

Didn't take any supplements today, apart from the iron water. Been feeling good all day. Have this fresh feeling in the chest and arms, it varies through the day and not always the same. Feel good.

No cravings for cheese/ dairy or wheat/ pastries all day.

8pm: Ate another sweet potato with home-made dairy-free pesto-sauce from frozen, and salt.

Either the potato or the magnetic pulser is making me feel a bit achy and 'inflamed'.

Did oregano oil and eucalyptus steam breathing. Drank 2 drops of the oregano essential oil also. Nose and sinuses started cleaning and hurting a bit.

Half-heartedly pulse-tested sweet potato - showed possible intolerance. Needs retesting.

Went to bed about 11.30pm, but kept waking up because of drunk people and noise from the street.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Sunday, 31st January

Woke up at 9.45am.

Was craving fruit juice, feeling tired but not sleepy when waking up. Had a tiny bit of grapefruit juice.

Smoothie: Soya milk (always organic, to avoid GMOs), water, 30g protein powder, vanilla extract drops, linseeds, dry blueberries, half a banana.

I'm detoxifying dairy and/or sinus infection. The pizza I ate a few days ago is getting purged by my body. Very coated tongue.

My eyes are clear since exposing them to oregano oil steam yesterday, but my face looks a bit puffy ('inflamed') and I have phlegm in the throat and sinuses. I think the body is fighting the sinus infection since I upset the infectious agents yesterday.

Drinking Celestial Seasonings' Mandarin Spice tea.

2.30pm: Ate a pack of potato crisps, salted, baked, not fried. Feel a bit 'inflamed' straight afterwards.

Whenever I go to shop a little hungry I should take something nice with me to eat on the way back, because I have a habit of always wanting to buy a treat of some kind from the shop.

3.10pm: Had half a small bowlful of porridge, made with oats, soya milk, salt, olive oil. Feel too full to eat a full bowl.

Today I don't have the fresh feeling like yesterday - feel a little tired and lazy.

***

Long break in notes...

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Tuesday, 16th February

Been sticking to healthy eating on and off. Have some interesting things to report:

  • Definitely feel better without gluten and dairy. But I get starch cravings if I cut out all starches, even if I get plenty of sugar from fruit juice and dates, etc. I have been eating potatoes and Nutribix (weetabix-style) cereals, gluten-free, made of sorghum (by LifeHealth Foods UK Ltd).
  • It's easier to stick to healthy eating if I don't worry about eating the so-called 'natural flavours' (which are not natural but chemical).
  • I try to reduce fruit juice since it's not raw and not a high-vibration food (pasteurized and industrially produced) but I still need it in the morning to wake up.
  • Thyroid Calming Tincture (from HerbPharm) and GABA (from Enzymatic Therapy) seem to cam me down when hyperthyroid symptoms start.
  • I met with Gareth Edwards, a nutritionist, who adviced me to follow an alkaline, high raw diet, eating plenty of high-vibration foods and balancing out with some healthy acidic foods. (link to separate report to follow)
  • I ordered wheatgrass and sprouts from Aconbury Sprouts and started juicing the wheatgrass and eating the sprouts every day.
  • I began to drink bottled alkaline spring water (Highland Spring, from organic soil) making sure there is no added fluoride like in some bottled water.
  • I read Marie Kondo's book: 'The Life-changing Magic of Tidying Up', which really inspired me to simplify my life and my flat. I worked at cleaning and organising for three days solid and threw away/ gave to charity 18 black bin bags of stuff. The result: A cleaner, better-organised flat, some weight off my shoulders and a nicer environment to live in.
  • The three-day cleaning spree also exhausted me, however, as the fourth day (yesteday) when I woke up I felt a bit ill, and very lethargic for most of the day. Exercise also seems to exhaust me sometimes. (People with hyperthyroid seem to report the same problem.)
  • Regarding fiber: I CAN eat salads made of sprouts, baby leaf salad, or spinach, seemingly without problems, especially if I balance them out with some 'heavy' foods, e.g. boiled eggs, cashew nuts, olive oil, falafel, etc. It seems to be just certain, 'tougher' fibers I have a problem with. What a relief! I really enjoy eating salads again.
  • My typical favourite salad is: Rocket, baby leaves, crushed cashew nuts, olive oil, lemon juice, hot chilli sauce, crushed sesame seeds, boiled beetroot, pea green shoots, falafels, a tiny bit of maple syrup, salt. All mixed well and chopped into smallish pieces.
  • Foods I don't seem to be able to tolerate: mixed frozen berries, dairy, gluten, food allergens listed earlier, peanut butter.
  • Foods that might possibly be bad for me: Nightshades, eggs, garlic.
  • I also don't like eating almonds anymore, since there seems to have been a bad reaction some time back. They need retesting though.
  • Hemp protein powder may cause constipation and loose stools. Will try to take in smaller quantity.
  • I haven't done much oregano oil breathing these days, unfortunately, since I feel that I have limited time in the days. It's a shame though, since my nose is feeling more blocked and my whole head more 'inflamed'.
  • I stopped taking supplements, except B-complex when drinking alcohol. I have to quite B-vitamin complex now, however, because it contains vitamin B6 (see next point).
  • I found an interesting approach to beating hyperthyroidism naturally and will try it starting today. It sounds very promising, I really hope it will work.
  • Weight: 59kg, starting to look healthier but still puffy & red eyes, blocked nose.
  • I've been getting detox symptoms, detoxing dairy: bad breath, blocked sinuses, etc.
  • Started drinking Pau D'Arco tea (a couple of days ago), it is supposed to help to clean the lungs and fight aspergillus. (Later note: I saw no evidence that a few teas of Pau D'Arco would have made any difference.)
  • I started getting a bit of a headache here and there but not too often or for too long. Feels similar to the headache on my previous raw food trial a year ago. Later note: I thought it was gluten and/or dairy withdrawal but it turned out to be a sinus headache.
  • Note: The zinc I took previously may have started my hyperthyroid problems (back in 2013).
  • Note: The last Nutritional Balancing (hair mineral analysis) nutritionist lady insisted that I stay on HYPOthyroid regime instead of HYPER. I didn't want to and so glad now I resisted it. It would have probably made me feel a lot worse.
  • My bones and joints keep sounding creaky, and have been (on and off) for many years now.
  • I just did oregano oil steam breathing (with water) and took two drops of the oil internally. 15 minutes later I blew some thick phlegm from one of my nostrils again - feels very good to clear it, similar to the Paris episode but not so dramatic. Seems like dairy-free living and a bit of oregano oil breathing is working! Haven't done blood electrification this time.
  • After cleaning for three full days - quite physical (and a bit emotional) work - taking big full suitcases up and down the stairs, and pulling them to charity shops, moving furniture, etc., I felt quite unwell the fourth day, after finishing everything the night before. I didn't drink alcohol and there was no other reason to be so tired, apart from 1) physical exhaustion 2) negative ionizer I just bought that emits ozone, 3) cleansing of old energies and decluttering the home and 'putting my past in order' by getting rid of stuff (energetic detox?) 4) Detox from eating lots of alkaline foods, no dairy and no gluten.
  • Strangely, my urine was grey-greenish colour this morning too, possibly indicating detox.

Supplement Plan for Overcoming Hyperthyroidism

Beginning a supplement trial for hyperthyroid symptoms - first dose taken today:

  • Solgar chelated copper: 7.5mg (3 capsules) every other day and 5mg (2 capsules) every other day. (Although one website states that you can take up to 12mg per day)
  • Solgar boron: 3mg (1 capsule) per day.
  • Solgar calcium, magnesium, and boron (3 capsules per day), providing: 1g calcium (as carbonate, gluconate, citrate), 400mg magnesium, 3mg boron. (A guy took up to 6x this much when feeling very unwell with hyperthyroid.) [Note: Reduced to 1 capsule later: 160mg cal, 130mg mag, 1mg boron.]
  • Solgar magnesium citrate ('highly absorbable'), 3 capsules per day: 600mg. [Reduced to 1 capsule later: 200mg]
  • Solgar no-flush niacin: 500mg (1 capsule) every other day.
  • Vitamin B1: 200mg (2 capsules) per day (HealthAid brand)
  • Vitamin B2: 100mg (1 capsule) per day (HealthAid)
  • A probiotic, one per day.
  • D3 vitamin, 2,500 IU, not every day.

In addition, I will stay away from iodine, zinc, and vitamin B6. Trace elements are also recommended, as well as silicon (from horsetail), 18-36mg of iron per day (I take 5-10mg, which is 1-2 sachets), protein, fats, vitamin K. Also milk and eggs are among the recommended list to avoid, as well as progesterone and birth-control pills. Certain foods, herbs and supplements have been recommended to discontinue for awhile for those who suffer from hyperthyroidism, these include: iodine, manganese, selenium, excess iron, zinc and multiminerals, excess vitamin E, ginseng, DHEA, pregenelone, gingko biloba, testosterone stimulating herbs, pine bark extracts, grapeseed extract, iodized salt, selenium.

This new supplementation plan follows advice from an article I found, explained better here: Hyperthyroidism Caused by Copper Deficiency? It has been suggested by many that copper deficiency causes anemia. Boron is used to increase testosterone and estrogen, which are suggested to be low in hyperthyroid people and cause low energy. Apparently estrogen requires copper for its manufacture, whereas progesterone and testosterone require zinc. Progesterone may stimulate the thyroid, whereas estrogen may suppress it. Chocolate craving can be a sign of copper deficiency. Copper should ideally be taken in amino-acid chelated form, 6-12mg daily, according to the original article.

Let's hope this works to reduce hyperthyroid symptoms - i.e. strengthen my eyes (I have lots of problems with them these days), strenghten my body for exercise, eliminate stress and heart palpitation symptoms. These symptoms are currently a little bit less than some time back, probably due to my less stressful lifestyle, but still definitely badly affecting me.

I will continue to take iron (sporadically) as well as GABA and 'thyroid calming tincture' and valerian as needed.

Wednesday, 17th February

Weight: 57kg.

8.30pm: Got proper diarrhea, but no linked symptoms - no nausea or weakness. Second day on supplements. Either this is caused by detoxification or the supplements.

Still got very red eyes today just from being at work (university teaching). But I maybe felt a tiny bit stronger than usual. Got some flu-like symptoms in the afternoon, maybe from the lunch salad.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Thursday, 18th Feb

Woke up with very puffy and red eyes... don't understand why. I ate well yesterday. I think it may be just stress causing thyroid problems, which in turn causes red eyes. And since my eyes were red and hurting yesterday, they are even worse this morning. I hate it. Makes me not want to go out.

Breakfast: Spirulina and lemon smoothie, sorghum cereal with water.

Decided not to go to university today, feel too tired and have a lot of work to do from home.

Slept many more hours, past midday, and still feel tired, flegmatic and quite moody. Eyes are not nearly as red and quite a bit less puffy upon waking up the second time. Maybe the supplements are helping?

The supplements I'm taking are not the highest quality but have added ingredients which are not that good for you. I hope I am not allergic/ sensitive to some of them. I put these negative feelings down to detox and hope that I feel better tomorrow. I'm glad I got to rest, though, since I clearly needed it.

I felt better towards the evening but generally felt quite lethargic all day.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Friday, 19th Feb - First Day of Menses

Felt good this morning, not especially energetic when waking up, but not too tired either. Once up I felt quite upbeat, until breakfast of Sorghum cereal, maple syrup, soya milk and fresh raspberries, which I suspect is not the most energising breakfast. Perhaps a fruit salad with hemp seeds and linseeds would be best. Drank two lemons in water to try to combat acidity.

Ran out of bottled spring water yesterday and drinking tap water for a while again.

I've had a slightly flu-like, fever-like feeling all day, which is strange, because I thought I ate very well and healthy yesterday. Not that much alkaline stuff though and I skipped the green juices. Had a pack of oven-cooked (not fried) 'ready salted' crisps (yuck) and 2x Naked raw cereal bars (gluten and dairy free). Those are not ideal foods by any stretch but I thought they would be treats that are not too bad. Maybe I was wrong?

Still get loose stools, and also gas today. Also some lower abdomen ache just now. Feel quite tired suddenly, maybe because I only slept about 7 hours last night.

Later note: Sudden tiredness is usually a sign that I ate something that doesn't agree with me. Sudden sneezing can be another sign, though it of course isn't always - just sometimes - caused by food.

12.20 noon: Menses started. No wonder I've been feeling a bit dizzy and having diarrhea and slight stomach ache. Just took supplements for the day and iron, feeling tired. I also have phlegm stuck in my throat even if I haven't eaten anything that causes it today, not even nuts. Either Pau D'Arco tea causes cleaning reaction or the menses cause the mucus, perhaps because they make me more acidic.

So I've been eating clean for quite a few days now, gluten and dairy free, alcohol-free, some sugar, plenty of live foods, green juices on and off, salad every day. More alkaline water and lemon water than usual. I was starting to look a bit more healthy and fresh in my face, however, the menses now are a major challenge.

I always get huge cravings during this time and because I usually feel physically very unwell, it makes me feel miserable, which makes me want a dose of 'instant joy' in the form of sugary, fatty junk food. I think it's this need for instant gratification that is behind most junk food urges, and much of addicition in general. (Although food cravings can often have to do with deficiencies as well.) The less happy you are on a certain day or in everyday life, the more likely you are to want to get a dose of happiness in certain flavours, a sugar high, alcohol-high, etc., depending on what your personal preferences are.

It doesn't help that the advertising industry is trying to create an image of selling 'happiness' in a bottle, e.g., and in addition, these substances are actually physically addictive too.

Writing this, I am actually getting a huge cravings for fatty food now, as I always seem to do during menses. Will eat cashew nut butter with apple slices and hope that I manage to stay away from junk.

I'm meant to be going to a party tonight as well, which is a surprise party, which will be a huge temptation to drink alcohol and might make me fall off-track. If I feel too bad with the menses, however, I won't go, even though it's kind of important for me to be there.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Saturday, 20th Feb

Yesterday I made it through the day without painkillers, and actually wasn't even using the grounding products or any other remedies. I was in some pain, and had to lie down all day, but it wasn't anywhere near as bad as usual. I was very tired, though, and had diarrhea and gas. Felt dizzy at some point also.

My guess is that the diet, together with iron, kidney beans (protein), and possibly copper supplementation are helping. Being gluten- and dairy-free seems to help, and eating more alkaline too. I had green juice yesterday, and wheatgrass juice, lots of lemon water, and not much else, apart from what was noted above. I didn't have much appetite and also didn't want to give into cravings for junk food. I'm so happy now that I didn't.

I rested all day from when my menses started, feeling quite miserable, and slept through the night as well.

So today, Saturday, there is no pain but I feel very tired. The flow yesterday and today was less than usual too. I hate the menses because I always feel tired before and after them for many days, so all and all maybe half of the month I'm feeling less well than usual and too low in energy. I hope that with this dietary approach, in the long-term, I won't lose energy anymore during menses, but can have good energy levels all through the month.

I got more energy towards the end of the day - maybe the iron and copper supplements helped.

Blowing blobs of phlegm out of my nose again - starting to think that it has more to do with quitting dairy than oregano oil...?

Sunday, 21st Feb

Felt good all day, don't remember being tired at all this day.

Either the supps or the negative ionizer I had on last night (on low) made me feel energetic. I also slept well last night. Felt a it groggy when waking up at 8.30am but as soon as I was on my feet I was awake. Went to bed around 2am.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Tuesday, 23rd Feb

I've been feeling stronger than usual today and yesterday. I barely dare to write it down in case it stops. Tiredness affects me (if I haven't slept enough) but not as badly as usual. My nervous system doesn't feel as weak and my eyes still get red but not as badly and they don't hurt/ sting/ water as much.

But this morning I woke up with puffy eyes and I think it might be from spirulina, which has iodine in it. Will stop taking spirulina for a while to test and see.

58kg now, not much menses left.

Still gluten and dairy-free. Alcohol-free, and on the same supplement regime, as well as a bit of rhodiola occasionally.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Wednesday, 24th Feb

8pm: So I've been feeling really good recently, more strong and confident.

However, yesterday I had hurting gums and today too. I ate falafels with Hummus from Tesco for lunch and they had breadcrumbs in them. I also had a miniportion of fruit pieces and dark chocolate. I was feeling tired and yawning in the afternoon after eating lunch. My eyes started watering and going red, feeling tired, and now in the evening I have a stiff and achy neck. The falafels didn't suit me (fruit and dark chocolate I think are quite safe).

All these same symptoms that I have been suffering from were slowly disappearing, until I ate the falafels which had breadcrumbs in them. I have noted before in these diet diaries that eating some bread breaks my gums, and even other people I know have reported the same.

So I suspect gluten from bread crumbs caused my problems, including the tiredness straight after. Either that or something else in the breadcrumbs, e.g. a preservative or another treatment agent. Some people sensitive to gluten (whether Celiac or not) report similar problems, as well as fuzzy vision, which I have, and a long list of other problems.

I read that wheat berries are stuffed into silos to wait for sales and they tend to get mold and fungus on them, and therefore preservatives are sprayed on them to prevent this. So when we eat wheat flour there is a whole host of other problems, not only gluten but these too, and added, possible, bleaching agents, additional preservatives, etc., when baking the bread.

So it is quite likely that it was the breadcrumbs causing my problems this day. Usually sudden tiredness after eating is a key sign for me to stop and think.

Also, Surefoodliving.com reports that the symptoms of fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome and gluten intolerance can be surprisingly similar, and suggests/ implies that all of these conditions may be caused by wheat and gluten.

I am also avoiding iodine now, even from table salt.

I think the eye puffiness and the red/watering/hurting eyes are separate problems, probably caused by different things.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Thursday, 25th Feb

Woke up with little bit puffy eyes but not badly. I think this is still left-over from the other day. I still have loose stools and today the diarrhea came back in slight form - I'm pretty sure this is caused by the supplements.

Magnesium can cause diarrhea if: 1) the dose is too high (e.g. more than 350mg/ day) 2) it's taken with/ without meals, depending on the person 3) not enough fiber is eaten with it 4) magnesium citrate is used - dimalate capsules may work better.

If not enough magnesium is being absorbed from the digestive system into the blood stream, then it ends up in your colon where it has a laxative effect.

I have been taking 1g of magnesium per day up to now, will reduce to 330mg. Other supplements stay the same. Hopefully this reduction in calcium and magnesium will eliminate the diarrhea, even though I'm taking magnesium in the form of citrate. [Later note: Still got loose stools.]

Let's see if my good feeling continues, i.e. was it mainly caused by cal-mag or by copper. I suspect copper since it seems that the magnesium wasn't absorbed so well anyway, not in such large quantity anyway.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Friday, 26th Feb

I feel really tired this morning - didn't sleep that well but I also spent the whole day in front of a computer yesterday, doing really boring work. I think that the lack of movement and fresh air yesterday are the main causes of fatigue today.

Woke up with puffy swollen eyes again - could be because of table salt eaten yesterday (has iodine) but more likely to have to do with sinuses - sinusitis can cause swelling around the eyes and red eyes, blurred vision, achy eyes, etc.

I had lunch at an Italian restaurant with my boyfriend and ate: green salad with lemon and olive oil, black pepper; roasted potatoes (side dish); and cooked spinach (side dish). I was happy about this meal and the new approach to restaurant eating I came up with (salad + side dishes) but I think the spinach was cooked in butter. That may have made my sinuses worse today. Lack of fresh air, lots of electric heating which dries the air, and lack of movement may be the culprits also.

My eyes are really hurting today.

I felt quite bad this day: headache, a bit nauseous at times, eyes were a bit puffy and hurt/ ached over the eyelids. Headache kept coming and going all day. It was possibly linked to stress but quite likely also to do with the previous day when I was sitting at the computer and not moving around.

The butter I ate yesterday at the restaurant may have caused these problems.

I had breadcrumbs (gluten) in falafels on Tue + Wed, which may still also be affecting me, though less likely.

Maybe I need to up the calcium + magnesium dosage again to keep the headache away? Or just do a lot of stretching...

But the way the stiff neck and associated headache comes feels like it could be linked to a food intolerance somehow, and if so, I suspect it could only be butter - which doesn't really make sense since I don't get the headache when eating croissants.

I think at least partly it's a sinus headache, and partly a tension headache. In any case butter, dairy and gluten don't seem to be good for me, and the butter would in any case make my sinus problems worse.

Ate vegan sweet potato curry in a pub for dinner, with naan bread (gluten, possibly dairy) with two glasses of white wine, and whiskey with sparkling water at home.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Saturday, 27th Feb

Woke up with hangover and a headache and a bit nauseous. Kept drinking lemon water.

My eyes are not badly puffy, but they are red due to dehydration. Eyes are still hurting but in a different way - it seems linked to the general headache now.

Maybe the eyes hurting (yesterday) has to do with sinuses - and maybe eating butter caused it! (Butter is concentrated milk.) That would make sense, because the headache would be a sinus headache in that case. (Today, of course, it's a dehydration headache, although alcohol does worsen my sinus problems/ mucus.) Although I had gluten and alcohol yesterday, at least I didn't have any dairy. Good.

So my guess now is that my eye problems and headache are caused by dairy - and are linked to sinus problems. But to avoid them I should avoid all dairy, even butter.

I ate lots of salty food yesterday, with table salt (the bad kind), not rock salt, so it's not the iodine in salt that causes eye puffiness. My eyes are not very puffy today, just a little bit. It's more likely the dairy.

1pm: Just did steam breathing with oregano oil and it immediately took my headache away. That proves that my headache is linked to sinuses. And, for any mucus condition, cold can make it worse - it does in my case anyway. So it makes sense that if I'm too cold, e.g. the house is too cold or I'm outdoors without enough warm clothes, I get a headache. Sometimes I even feel that a windy weather can give me a headache.

Also, I sometimes developed headaches when I went on a clean, high raw diet - I probably didn't have enough heat in my body then as my body was used to getting a large amount of heat from foods. It makes sense that this would have made my chronic sinus congestion worse. I really think my eye problems are linked to this too.

I hope that once I keep breathing steam and oregano oil, drinking hot teas and avoiding cold and strictly stay away from all dairy (even butter), my eye problems, sinus congestion, and linked problems will be gone, eventually. I may need to do blood electrification too, and other things, if it's aspergillus that I'm still fighting and not just dairy congestion.

It has been difficult to find this all out and link the pieces together because I didn't get headaches when eating dairy and gluten regularly, but then again I was also eating warm foods. Mucus congestion was there though.

And then it seemed that whenever I became dairy-free (e.g. long time ago, raw food diet), my headaches started. But that time it was because I wasn't getting enough warmth in my body (which seems to make mucus problems worse).

But the fact that my headache instantly disappeared today with steam breathing shows that it's a mucus problem. What a relief to finally find this out! I look forward to a much-improved life without dairy or mucus problems!

I ate boiled eggs today and wonder if they are mucus-causing. By the way, I have also snacked on dates in recent days, and they don't seem to give me problems anymore, like they used to (because of their sugar content).

Also, I think the Chinese doctor is right, I should only drink warm water, as much as possible, because drinking cold water, and even touching it, or being in a cold room seem to make my headaches worsen (also today).

Did magnetic pulser on my eyes and cheeks and forehead. Now doing blood electrification and drinking Pau D'Arco tea.

The headache came back later and started getting quite bad. I did steam breathing with oregano oil again and it got rid of it straight away, again!

I was fighting with myself, whether to drink alcohol this evening but I didn't in the end. I actually managed to continue working until quite late and didn't feel too bad about it - kind of enjoyed it and was happy that I didn't need alcohol to focus and to get stuff done.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Sunday, 28th Feb

I slept badly for some of the night but in the morning started to have lots of crazy dreams, and when I woke up I felt like I had had a massive clear-out of my brain - I felt quite well.

I often have this up-beat optimistic feeling after a well-slept night, and I'm enjoying that feeling today.

I seem to have more dreams when I don't drink alcohol, especially if I go for longer periods without drinking. I feel that dreams are important for mental wellbeing and am wondering what kind of damage the alcohol must be doing to my mind if it stops me from dreaming and/or sleeping well.

Yesterday I ate fish and eggs since long time, did lots of sinus clerance, took supplements in the evening instead of morning, ate many coconut macaroons (sugary, but dairy and gluten free). Did some of these things contribute to me feeling well this morning? Or is it just due to general, longer-term, on-going detoxification?

Later note: Perhaps sinus clearance makes a huge difference to my body and makes it function much better?

My eyes are a lot more puffy today again. They are not red or hurting, just puffy. Is this because of the sugar, or maybe an allergy to something? Is it just a detox symptom?

I've began to ask myself: 'Does this suit my ideal lifestyle?' a lot, since I read KonMari's book. How would I get out of bed in my ideal life? How would I carry myself during the day? How would I speak to people, etc.? I notice many interesting things and to some extent, 'fake it 'til you make it' approach works here.

I realize that in my ideal life I would speak a lot less and not involve myself with many things I involve myself with usually. I would get out of bed with good posture, stretching. I would wear nice clothes and have my hair and skin always done nicely, even if just alone in the house.

It's a good approach, I don't follow it most of the day (yet) but when I remember to follow it, it brings me happiness and some new realizations.

***

Gap in notes...

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Friday, 4th March

Have a busy week behind but some good progress on the health front. Supplements seem to be working. It seems to me that the articles (summarized and linked to here) were right and copper + other supplementation helps to alleviate my hyperthyroid symptoms! Therefore it would seem likely that copper deficiency is a least in some cases the cause of hyperthyroidism.

Yesterday I had a presentation but felt only very slightly stressed out about it, and presented confidently, and was able to speak coherently; didn't forget words or get confused in the middle of the presentation as I sometimes do.

Later note: At a presentation one week later, my face went really red, but I didn't feel as stressed out as usual. So hyperthyroid symptoms lessening, while red face problem has come back (despite wearing foundation make-up, which seemed to remove this problem previously). I am fairly certain that the red face came from having drunk wine the day before, which seems to affect me very badly on many levels, worse than other types of alcohol.

I feel warmer day to day and stress doesn't seem to affect me nearly as badly. I feel stronger in general. I don't get the feeling of physical tiredness or muscle weakness as easily.

I had to attend a drawing workshop last week all week, and having been away from home a lot, I've been compromising on my diet a little bit - had 2x vegan sandwiches (gluten), some red wine (makes me feel mentally out of balance, worries come), some other alcohol, some dairy and gluten foods. Generally I've been eating very healthy, however, but didn't have time for oregano oil breathing, and as a result began to get more and more blocked up.

My eyes still look very dull, not bright, and quite puffy. Not red though, and perhaps there are not so many vision problems.

It's possible that the vision problems are linked to gluten/cereal grains/wheat/bread, as it seemed a bit last week. (After eating a sandwich my eyes started watering and feeling uncomfortable.)

But generally, despite veering off the diet a little bit, I feel stronger. My stomach has been bloated on and off. I suspect all cereal grains might bloat it, not just wheat, so sorghum breakfast cereal may have to go.

I have been on the new suppement regime for two weeks now (17 days to be exact), and will continue with the same regime, albeit cal-mag reduced from the original plan. Vitamin D, rhodiola, and iron water are taken on and off, as is practical.

I slept well last night, had a powerful, angry dream, which felt like an emotional clear-out. Felt like some weight had been taken off me when I woke up.

I think the zinc supplementation as adviced by the hair mineral analysis nutritionist may have caused my whole problem of hyperthyrodism. Hair analysis evidenced that my body started to push out copper - but was the copper appearing in my hair sample good or bad quality copper? How would we know? Was I copper toxic after all? Is anyone ever copper toxic? The nutritionists I consulted with regarding the hair mineral analysis seemed to make a big deal about trying to get the body to begin to detoxify copper, even when it didn't show in the original test. When it showed in the hair that copper was coming out of my body, they saw that as a good sign of progress. But then I ended up with copper deficiency, it seems, so are they actually making people a lot worse by causing their bodies to push out copper, by using zinc supplementation? More explanation of this finding here: Hyperthyroidism Caused by Copper Deficiency?

Diarrhea and constipation are gone, today elimination is good. I guess the loose stools had to do with the magnesium supplements?

58kg

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Tuesday, 8th March

Slept well last night even though I woke up at some point. Woke up with a warm and content feeling in my body.

Last night I felt anxious - similar to the food intolerance-feeling, so I took thyroid calming tincture and 4x GABA. I also took a bath with magnesium at 11.30pm and one copper supplement before bed. There was one mobile phone in the room while sleeping, about 1.5-2m away. I'm listing these things in case one of them was what caused me to have a good night's sleep. Also yesterday I took the supplements as usual, plus iron water (earlier in the day).

1.5 glasses of Cava earlier in the evening. Had 2x decaf green tea and didn't get a negative reaction as usual to the small amount of caffeine. This is the first time I have had green tea in probably at least one year. My body is getting stronger.

Later note: I still feel unwell if I drink many decaf green teas in a day (they do have some caffeine), but it's just general caffeine effect, not the 'intolerance' effect I had before, where my arms would be aching and I would have a fever-like exhausted feeling soon after drinking it, and extreme dehydration.

I ate lots of protein in the last two days (which is maybe the reason why I slept so well). I think my eyes may be less tired because of it. But now, after waking up and eating, I feel tired again. Drinking another decaf green tea.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Thursday, 24th March

I've now finished two more weeks on the supplement regime. It has definitely made me stronger. I don't get as many hyperthyroid symptoms or as much anxiousness anymore. I can take stress better. I'm not sure how the food intolerance is linked to this whole picture since the heart palpitations, stress and irritability seem to be linked to both. I still get 'heavy heartbeat', e.g. last night it stopped me from sleeping. I took thyroid calming tincture and it calmed me and I fell asleep. This has happened a few times previously as well. But the palpitations are not anywhere near as bad as they were - barely noticable.

I'm taking a break from all other supplements except copper, iron and vitamin D for now, because I kept having loose stools and diarrhea on and off ever since I took these supplements.

Great news: I am finding more and more ways to eliminate/ greatly reduce menstrual pain. This month (last week) menses were accompanied by very little pain and I didn't need painkillers or any other remedies to handle the pain. Iron water seemed to help take the pain away and the pain was so little that even distracting myself with a game on my mobile phone (Peak) seemed to help overcome the pain. High protein, dairy-free, and almost completely gluten-free diet seemed to help also, as well as iron - definitely - and maybe copper helped too since it's involved in iron storage mechanism. The link between copper and anemia has been an important realization for me.

Another realization of great importance for me was regarding copper deficiency. It can be caused by zinc supplementation and this finding makes me seriously doubt the hair mineral analysis 'Nutritional Balancing' process, in addition to the doubts I already had about it previously. I have now added notes on all the articles outlining my experience with the hair mineral analysis that I recommend against going through that process, since it is expensive, and seems unprecise, and even dangerous.

It is quite possible that the zinc supplementation (and other supplements?) they gave me caused the whole hyperthyroid-like situation in my body, which I have been putting up with for three years, until now that it seems to be going away. Also, nutritionist insisted that I was HYPOthyroid even when I had lots of HYPERthyroid symptoms and even one blood test to show low TSH and therefore suggest an overactive thyroid, etc.

In addition the whole process is so expensive and they claim to know so much on the basis of a hair mineral test, some of which seems contradictory and all of which seems too certain of the reasons/ causes of problems, whereas the human body is immensely complex and surely it's not so easy to manipulate it as precisely as the analysts and nutritionists following Dr. Paul Eck's and Dr. Lawrence Wilson's science claim.

Recently I have eaten only a little bit of raw food but lots of easy-to-eat vegetarian protein: lentil and quinoa crisps, corn crisps, hummus, oats, hemp protein powder, eggs, nuts, hemp seeds and soya milk. I am not following a vegan diet anymore as occasionally I eat fish and the other day I had organic chicken soup. I eat quite a lot of eggs again. I'm more vegan than I used to be, however, as I am almost completely dairy-free, apart from a few little cheat moments.

I've stopped eating spirulina for a while, in case it increases hyperthyroid problems due to iodine.

I've been more relaxed about sugar, using small amounts of maple syrup and eating some licorice sweets and sweet chilli hummus here and there.

I feel stronger for the high-protein diet, iron, supplements, and copper, but I don't look as radiant and healthy as when I ate raw foods and green juices only.

I've drank alcohol occasionally and that definitely causes me to look less healthy very quickly. Especially wine, which makes me feel unwell mentally (worries of all sorts start popping in my head and they have a stronger hold on my mind than usual). Wine also seems to cause me to put on weight very quickly.

During my menses, which started on Friday 18th March (and lasted five days), I reached a weight of 61kg, which is more than I've weighed for ages...

But cramps were much less than normal, even easier than last month. There was almost no gas, though I did have some bloatedness and diarrhea. Lots of tiredness, starting couple of days before the menses started, as usual. Lower back ache/ sensitiveness, and cravings were also there. Bloating was much less than usual at the beginning of the menses but my belly bloated later on. No moodiness or nausea this time, thankfully.

I feel happy about living a relaxed, dairy-free, gluten-free lifestyle, but have to keep moving towards more raw foods and avoidance of alcohol as much as possible. I drink so much less than I used to years ago, but I notice more and more clearly how it affects me, even in subtle ways. I don't get hangovers anymore since I don't drink much and I employ the 'hangover remedy' methods.

Alkaline water: I drink a lot more bottled water now instead of tap water. I've reduced the fruit juice intake as I don't feel like I need it as much anymore. But I do get sugar cravings, mainly for the energy boost.

Puffy and red eyes are getting less.

Red eyes seem to be lessened with this supplementation and/or the dairy-free lifestyle. Protein seems to help too, and iron, and perhaps the oregano oil steam breathing (less mucus).

The puffy eyes are still not completely resolved, but no alcohol and no gluten or take-away food seems to help. I also bought a new non-allergenic duvet and and my boyfriend cleaned the bedroom carefully of dust and mold (that was appearing on the single-glazed window frames). This effort because I want to eliminate the option that the puffy eyes are caused by dust or mold allergy.

My nose/sinuses are still suffering from a long-term chronic infection, even though it is less than it was. Yesterday I blew very thick yellowy (green?) phlegm out from my nose again. Dairy-free lifestyle together with oregano oil breathing seem to be key. I did a marathon of oregano oil steam breathing two days before this latest (minor) clear-out today.

Muscle exercises: Brilliant way to exercise seems to be 'Power Wave' style whole-body/ musclework. Me and my boyfriend get results quicker and the exercise itself is very brief, intense and effective. It makes me feel very good.

20 seconds of exercise, 10 second break, with fairly heavy weights, whole-body exercises (mostly) for 20 mins in total (I do 10 minutes so far only, to start with). Each exercise is done 6 times.

There are three instant ways how I can make my life better, I think:

  1. Always eat breakfast which is high-raw, high-nutrient and high-protein - e.g. green juice with protein powder mixed in. Breakfast is really important for sticking to healthy eating during the day. Green juice is ideal.
  2. Stick to exercise routine (I like to do the exercise late in the evening, just before bed, because it makes me sleepy and my muscles need a rest afterwards. For some people, however, the effect of exercise is the opposite.)
  3. Do as much sinus clearing with oregano oil breathing as possible.

Being dairy free is hugely beneficial for me! Dairy seems to not suit me at all... Sinus problems, smelly breath, I can even smell the dairy on my skin after eating it, phlegmy throat and can't speak as clearly, cough, allergy symptoms from some dairy, possibly fatigue, possibly puffy and dull-looking eyes, etc.

I now have this and next week off teaching and studying, will have to do a lot of work from home though. It's Easter holiday.

Jump to the summary and conclusions of this diet diary.

Saturday, 25th March - Easter weekend

Since I've been eating plenty of protein, I don't seem to crave croissants or bread anymore - not really even cheese. I wonder if the cheese and wheat cravings were really protein cravings? (Both wheat and dairy have protein.) Or are the reduced cravings due to supplementation? I do crave sugar, however, for the instant energy boost, from time to time.

Couple times in the recent week I drank alcohol but really didn't enjoy it. It didn't taste good, didn't have a pleasant effect, and seemed just unnecessary. Not sure if something is changing in my system to make me not want alcohol anymore. Maybe the protein or the supplements are having an effect on me.

I think if I am to transition this diet into a more raw food direction, I will have to drink a green juice almost every day and have plenty of nuts and seeds, which I thought was bad before but from my previous diet diaries it seems that sometimes when I ate lots of nuts and seeds I felt very good the next day.

To be continued...

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