Friday, February 22, 2008

Food vs. drugs

At the risk of alienating anyone... here's my opinion
(again), after having read many books, and
having felt the amazing effects of diet modification
on my own health:

you can find books that say there is no scientific
proof that food hurts or helps, written by MDs, and
you can find books that say food is an essential
component, even a miracle cure, also written by MDs.

You can bet that all money that goes to research via
the LFA or the ALR is going towards gene/
pharmaceutical research, and *not* towards seeing if
tumeric or garlic or anything else the drug industry
can't patent and make a buck off is of help in
alleviating symptoms. Do I think the LFA or the ALR
are corrupt in their motivations? absolutely not.

But conventional MDs, medical schools, and pharmaceutical
companies are inseparable. there reason there is no
scientific evidence is that the trials are conducted
by drug companies. why would they study whether food
might do the trick? there is virtually *no* training
in nutrition in medical school. I find that appalling.

Point being, there are 2 schools of thought out there
amongst doctors. Those who go with the flow, and just
treat with drugs and surgery, and treat the symptoms.
And those who are more forward thinking/ open minded,
use drugs and surgery and also include things like
supplements, acupuncture, massage, allergy testing,
and diet. they are all MDs. their opinions hold equal

I want to feel as good as possible and have a full
life, and be on as few drugs as possible, so I'm
willing to change my diet, even though it's not easy,
and i miss certain foods (esp diet soda, chocolate, and potato

There are more than a few books out there on food and
healing, a more recent (and best-seller) being "Eat to
Live" by Joel Fuhrman, MD. I'm planning to be one of
his patients, but it's expensive and they don't take
insurance. He's in NJ, near me. so I'll just read his
book and try and follow the suggestions on my own, and
let my rhuem. and neph. and the lab tests help me wean
off the drugs this time, instead of having 2 primary
docs (last time i had a DO, a primary and several
specialists, and an acupuncturist; time before that i
just had a rhuem and a MD who did diet and chelation.
i move a lot- lupus has made me a bit of a homeless
person at times, wearing out my welcome with friends
and family, sleeping in my van, racking up debt
renting an apartment while paying medical bills and not being able to work a full-time job, etc.).

I have had years of remission, drug-free, after having
a stroke, kidney failure, etc. and being on 9 drugs. I
generally relapse when i stop eating well and "do too
much," and several big life stressors converge (death
in family, moving, planning wedding, long trip,
medical debt, etc.)

Anyway, I'm all about staying solution-oriented.
wishing you all the best health we can attain

How Not to be Completely Exhausted

Someone asked about boosting energy when you have lupus (SLE).
I've tried many things over the 16 years of having
this lupus follow me around (and sit on me like a
hippo). Really, these tips apply to anyone, even healthy people.
Here are some things i've done:

1- know when to quit. when i feel good, i tend to
overdo it (start cleaning up all the piles in the
house, and keep going forever til i drop), then end up
in bed for several days.

2-take as little painkiller as is effective. if i can
take 1/4 or 1/2 or a percaset for pain, i'll be less
groggy/ draggy.

3- drink less caffeine (yes you're more tired for the
first few days, but it makes your energy fluctuate big
time, then makes it hard to sleep). i've given up on
eliminating it completely, but i just have 1 glass of
green tea when i get up, and that's it.

4- eat less sugar. also sends your energy all over the
place. i have come to like stevia (acquired taste) adn
xylitol (nicer taste), both natural plant derivatives
with no calories. i was on a candida (anti-yeast) diet
for 1.5 years, and i felt amazing. then i fell off the
wagon... right now i'm doing the "fat smash diet" from
celebrity fit club, which i did last year, adn the
first phase is eating nothing but whole foods- fruit,
veggies, yogurt, oatmeal.

5- learn to meditate, if only for 5 minutes a day.
thinking takes energy.

6- find a good acupuncturist to restore your Chi (life
force/ energy). this has been really effective f or
me. ask around for a good one, or look for one who is
chinese-trained and also does herbs. even if you never
do herbs (i don't take chinese herbs), it says a lot
about their training.

7- Chi gong is suppose to be incredibly effective as a
self-help energy thing.

8- in 94 and 02 i had a series of chelation treatments
to remove the heavy metals in my system and i felt
like wonder woman.

9-exercise. the trick to this is to do enough to get
your heart rate up, but don't work so hard that you
set yourself back (see #1, know when to quit). a
reasonable amount of exercise (20-30 minutes on the
treadmill, or outside if you're in a decent climate, 5
days a week, for example. you can start with 10 if 20
is too much, and work your way up over time).

10- take digestive enzymes to help you break down your
food and get the nutrients from it. Udo's brand is
very popular. you can get at a health food store or
cheaper at

11- take 1 tbsp of pure, mercury free fish or flax oil
daily. this helps with mood and inflammation.
Barlean's is very popular and recommended to me by an
MD. vitacost or health food store.

that's all i can think of for now...