Monthly Archives: March 2014

Twenty-One Tips To a Healthier You

Here is my plate, next to my husband's dinner plate.  As you can see, I've successfully added in some avocado. (yay!)  I also have added in some sweet potato (plain).  This evening we had fish casserole that I make, and I just pulled mine out before putting theirs together.  They also had sweet potato cakes and fruit.

Here is my plate, next to my husband’s dinner plate. As you can see, I’ve successfully added in some avocado. (yay!) I also have added in some sweet potato (plain). This evening we had fish casserole that I make, and I just pulled mine out before putting theirs together. They also had sweet potato cakes and fruit.

A good friend of mine recently went to a lunch and lecture at the clinic I go to.  As we discussed some of the main talking points, it got me thinking again about the issue many teens have with acne, well… not just teens (right moms in our 30s?)… but yes, a lot of them are teens.

Now that I know a little bit about WHY people get acne, when I see a face covered in acne I think two things:

#1. Leaky Gut

#2. Zinc deficient diet.

The Standard American Diet (SAD) is well known for being depleted of most nutrients, but zinc is a major one during puberty, because it helps you grow taller, and it helps you not have major break-outs.  My son is on 90 mg a day, my daughter is on 60 mg – as are my husband and I.  The other children take 30 mg a day.  So spread the word – in a kind way of course, when you can help a brother out.  You know that most people are treating their acne  the wrong way – just like any skin issue.

Topically.

The reason why that never does much… except cause more issues in scaring and thinning of skin, and often more irritation… is because the inflammation is from the inside.  Sure you can wash your face well, and take care of things as best you can – but ultimately, when you have leaky gut?  You’re never going to get to the root of those issues with acne, until you address the gut issues – with diet, probiotics, fish oil and giving your body what it needs to be well.

A good e-book on the issue I recently heard about from the paleo world is also is called SKINTERVENTION, by Liz Wolfe.  Worth checking into also.  She recently released “EAT THE YOLKS”, which I’ve heard is super entertaining and informative!

So, as I step off of my soapbox on the ZINC topic. I will share with you the other 21 questions and answers from the lunch and lecture on nutrients.  Some great stuff here – read carefully!

TWENTY-ONE NUTRIENT LEVEL TIPS:

1. How long does vitamin C from your meal stay in your blood. (4-6 hours)

2. Which mineral nutrient helps to regulate blood sugar, energy levels, and also acts as an antidepressant?  (Chromium.  Broccoli, tomatoes, and green beans are great sources – it’s often low due to too much sugar intake)

3. What commonly deficient mineral used to be found in abundance in hard water?  (Magnesium)

4. What vitamin is the prime regulator of inflammation? (after Vitamin C, it’s Vitamin D – it’s the body’s sunshine vitamin)

5. What mineral deficiency manifests as little white spots on your fingernails?  (Zinc)

6. What common disease is now being called Type 3 Diabetes?  (Alzheimer’s)

7. What B Vitamin enhances cellular energy production, and happens to turn your urine bright yellow? (B2 – Riboflavin)

8. Which nutrient, if optimal in your blood, can help to reverse congestive heart failure? (Co-Q10, age dependant but generally 100-200 mg, I take 200 mg a day)

9. Which mineral is necessary for the optimal functioning of glutathione, and for which 76,000 medical references exist? (Selenium, I take 200 mg a day for cellular energy and thyroid function)

10. Not everyone can use Folic Acid, an important B vitamin.  Why?  (Mutated genetics of the liver – MTHFR, this is where methylated folate, B12 and B6 are essential!)

11.  Older people are commonly low in this B vitamin because they lack intrinsic Factor in their stomachs. (B12)

12. What is the most important vitamin? (The one you are lowest in!)

13. True or False?  All you really need to do is take a good multivitamin for nutritional health.  (False!)

14. Macular degeneration can be prevented if you have adequate  ___________?  (Lutine)

15. How many ‘colors’ do you need on your plate each day for optimal health?  (9-10)

16. Which mineral do we now know you can get too much of?  (Calcium)  Which vitamin helps to reduce the toxicity of this excess?  (K2, often supplements have them with D3)

17. Which fat soluble vitamin COMPETES with vitamin D for cellular receptor sites?  (Vitamin A)

18. Which omega ratio regulates inflammation?  (Omega 6  / Omega 3)

19. Which sugar causes liver damage?  (Fructose, here is a food informative chart, if you’re curious.)

20. True or False?  Eating a balanced diet is all you need to maintain good health. (False, if you’re not absorbing the right nutrients, it doesn’t matter how great you eat)

21.  True or False?  A gas gauge is not really necessary.  Just fill up your tank often… and hope you don’t run out!  (False.  It’s important to know your nutrient levels, and make sure they are at optimal levels regularly before you have a break down!)

“The person who knows my commandments and keeps them, that’s who loves me.  

And the person who loves me will be loved by my Father,

and I will love him and make myself plain to him.”
John 14:21

 

Cleansing Spring Transitions

Here are my new vitamin Bs and Folate to help me and my defect give my body what it needs!

Here are my new vitamin Bs and Folate to help me and my defect give my body what it needs!

It’s right around the corner… just one more day!  Spring makes me think of CLEANING and purging!  I’ve been in an extra great mood to work on this, after the week I had the last week.

Thankfully I was super busy, and wasn’t able to focus on what was going on around me and to me, otherwise I might have jumped off of a cliff.  Ok, not really – but I’m thankful for my friends who lifted me up in prayer.  I really needed it.

We took the kids to visit their doctor last week, and I got a vitamin IV boost.  I was already low on sleep, and per my doctor’s instructions, had started a vitamin C cleanse (with my SIBO elimination diet), and I also began taking my methylated vitamins for my MTHFR issues.  (more on that in a minute)

Well, what happened was a cleanse alright.  I thought I was chelating again, as the following day I spent a lot of time saying, “Oh Lord… please help me… don’t let me die.”

This is when I think MOST people go to the ER.

However, since I’ve dealt with knifing pain in my stomach and bowels for years… sadly, it’s almost normal for me.

Thankfully, it’s LESS normal – as IBS isn’t an issue anymore for weeks on end…

No, this was definitely a detoxify issue.

So, what is up with all of that?  Well, it’s because methylated vitamins are what I need… my liver can process those.  So in the meantime, things get a lot worse – before they get better.

My finger nails broke all off, and I just felt like someone was repeatedly squeezing my stomach and then kicking me in the gut for about 4 days straight.  On day 5, I started to feel much better.  More energy, lots less bloating and constipation…  I have great hope that it’s making big differences, and I am SO grateful.

I'm not sure when my nails have ever looked this bad.  I had worn some Jamberry nails (which I loved) - but following that - the spooning was severe and they just ripped right off!

I’m not sure when my nails have ever looked this bad. I had worn some Jamberry nails (which I loved) – but following that – the spooning was severe and they just ripped right off!

Unfortunately in the middle of my chaos my daughter, and then 2 sons started breaking out from a gluten cross contamination last week.  At first, I was certain it was my daughter’s new orthodontic “bands” that she started wearing – as cornstarch is used to keep them from sticking to one another.  However, then the boys started breaking out a few days later… I knew that wasn’t the only thing we were dealing with.

I knew it had to be something knew – either a formula of a vitamin had changed or perhaps an ingredient I was using had changed….  I knew I wasn’t doing anything specifically different.

Frustrating.

My daughter had a formal date with her father and was broken out from her shoulders to her hands, in the usual DH spots for her.  The boys were both broken out on elbows and hands.  I think it’s been a YEAR since we have had a break out…  I should count my blessings God has allowed us to keep such a good handle on things.

That said, I’m SO grateful that we KNOW when we’ve been cross contaminated… so we can be aware and do something about it.  About 3 days ago we took away their daily vitamins to see if could be one of those.  I must always remember that even the item that are labeled “gluten-free” can still have up to 20 ppm in them – and perhaps some “new batch” was higher than most…  Regardless, my kids are SUPER sensitive, and I am bound to get to the bottom of this!  Gluten dermatitis issues are always difficult because they take 1-2 days to show up after ingesting, and then another 2-3 weeks to go away, even after you remove the cross contamination.  Trying to figure out if they’re worse or better is always fun in the process, especially once they start the itching and scratching.

Another fun tidbit I learned while discussing MTHFR with the kid’s doctor, was the whole midline issues, and things like the “tongue-tied” or “tongue thrusting” issues.

Why did this mean so much to me?  Because our oldest just got braces put on for the 3rd time this year.  He had them off for 6 months before we realized, his whole smile was changing again.  The  orthodonist had him swallow and declared it was his swallowing and strong “tongue thrust” that had moved his teeth out of position, despite a nightly retainer.  As you might imagine I was hoping there was something they could do for this… and the orthodonist recommended “tongue training”.  I had no clue what that meant. (here is an idea, if you want to know)  Thankfully the kid’s doctor had lots of information that would be helpful and explained a lot on how to help my kids who are struggling with various issues.  All of the kids she’s seen so far are tongue tied… some are severely tongue-tied – like my oldest.

Those kids with MTHFR, and midline issues often have the following issues (I think my oldest had ever one): Troubles nursing (many times they will get their tongue “clipped” to untie it, this helps tremendously), or mom will have sore nipples, slow nurser/failure to thrive, motion sickness/troubles sleeping/night waking/mouth breather.  Mouth breathing while sleeping makes it difficult for you to get into that “deepest sleep” mode, and can make you imbalanced with melatonin, and sleep, you also take in less oxygen, so that’s trouble for your immune system.  Those people are often more acidic, so cancer is more likely as well.  When our oldest was little, he never woke up from a nap happy, and ironically, our youngest son is the same way.  They are just always feeling not well rested, and have troubles relaxing to go to sleep because of this disrupted cycle.  Sound familiar?  Hmmm.  I’m the exact same way.

Isn’t it interesting how things like this fit together?  God is such a great designer to make our “system” work together so perfectly.

I always wondered why some of my kids were horrible at swallowing pills…  if only I would have had their tongues clipped early on, and knew to put them on methylated vitamins for the sake of their liver!!

I am happy to announce how much progress my kids with ASD are doing.  My oldest daughter has been saying, “Hey mom… look at this, and check this out” a lot more.  She never used to do that.  She’s even put on earrings to match an outfit ALL BY HERSELF.  Again, details are not generally her thing.   Most of the time she’s been much calmer, and WAY less irrational fits… with a higher level of communication.  Since she was my most severe – it’s been a gift to see her thriving, and knowing these changes are helping her.

Thanks be to God.  Can I just say how good it feels to be making progress, and seeing the fruit of what God has done in my own body, and that of our family?  I’m feeling stronger each day.

How about you?  Working on spring cleaning?  Do you have any great printable check lists?  Fill me in!

“Have I not commanded you?

  Be strong and courageous. 

Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed,

for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Joshua 1:9

 

Weight, Hormones & Food Sensitivities

I had my son take a picture of this van that pulled up beside us the other day.  They had quite a chuckle regarding just the education aspect that is served in our government run schools.  Make sure you get your whole grains!

I had my son take a picture of this van that pulled up beside us the other day. They had quite a chuckle regarding just the education aspect that is served in our government run schools. Make sure you get your whole grains!

Look around at any public place.

What do you see?

Most likely you’ll see what statistics show…

The most unhealthy nation in the world, with the most spent per person on health care.

Or rather, disease care.

I’ve really started to notice either two extremes – people who are clearly over weight, or people who are malnourished.

You might be surprised that food sensitivities, and hormonal imbalances can cause BOTH.

I take my own struggles for example.  Hypothyroidism for me, is caused by food sensitivities and leaky gut… (since the T4 to T3 conversion happens in your gut…)  My body WILL NOT lose weight, and it will gain it in the blink of an eye.

It doesn’t matter how much I move, if I tried to eat less (and actually eating too few of calories can also actually make you GAIN weight because it will shift your hormones too much).

One more reason why slow and steady wins the race!

Exercising too much can all defeat your purposes.  That’s right…. too much cardio, or too hard of workouts makes you hungrier, raises your cortisol and stresses our your adrenal glands…   NOT exactly what you’re going for either.

It’s hard not to think about people who struggle to lose weight and feel like they “can’t” – yet they have no clue it has to do with hormone balancing and food sensitivities.

When I was taking that new supplement a few weeks back, (the one with coconut, even though I can’t tolerate it), the first sign was I put on 4-5 lbs… in a week.  BAM.  Just like that.   Now some of it was obviously inflammation, and retention of water – but it doesn’t matter what I do when that happens… I crave sugar (fruit) like crazy and just never feel full.

Hypothyroidism kicked into high gear, despite my dose that I’m on being fine – just a week ago…  and it made me realize just how much our body works together…

Or doesn’t… when things aren’t right.

So, just some thoughts – if you, or someone you love… battles a weight issues – even though they are eating well, and exercising, and getting plenty of sleep – it’s important to look at the proper thyroid ratio (including Reverse T3), and look at their cortisol levels (a saliva test that measures things over 12 hours is best).

If they are underweight, and unable to gain – it’s important to look at absorption issues, and test their vital vitamins and amino acid levels.  An OATS blood test would be a good place to start.

It’s good to keep in mind that over weight doesn’t necessarily mean someone is lazy…  and thin doesn’t necessarily mean someone is healthy either…

Spread the word!  You are what you absorb!  Healthy for Him!

“Seek Me first and foremost; then the rest of your life will fall into place, piece by piece.”

1 Chronicles 16:11

Correlation Isn’t Causation

This super easy sorbet is a favorite of my kids'.  Just coconut milk, raw honey and frozen berries blended.  I stirred in fresh strawberries for a delicious treat!

This super easy sorbet is a favorite of my kids’. Just coconut milk, raw honey and frozen berries blended. I stirred in fresh strawberries for a delicious treat!

I hear it over and over again, the defenses of people who declare you’re blaming this or that for something to do with why someone is sick.

Whether it’s our food system, or our medical system, or genetics, or the environmental toxins or vaccines…

The blame shift goes on.

Believe me.  I get it.

I don’t think there was “ONE” thing that caused the domino effect in my own illness.  No way.  It’s not that simple.

It was the perfect storm, and the exact chain of events.

I can track inflammation back to when I was 26 months old and had my tonsils removed… I can track gut problems back to grade school, and IBS back to High School.  Irregular periods?  Breast cysts? Chronic infections… the genetics and gut health I passed on to our kids…

I could go on and on, but you know what I’m saying.  You’ve heard it before.

Is GLUTEN the source of all evil?

Of course not.

It just happens to be a major player in inflammation in the gut because it’s not digestible.

Are vaccines to blame for things like autism?

Alone?  No… but their toxin load are super dangerous to many who can’t detox those chemicals.  They land in the fat cells of the brain, and in the gut.

Do pesticides and GMOs cause gut issues?

By themselves?  No. Contributor?  Definitely.

So what DOES make someone sick?

Don’t think for one minute I haven’t back tracks into my past and thought…

What if amalgams weren’t used in my mouth?

What if my hormones had been balanced in high school?

What if I didn’t eat so horribly in college?  Or over use antibiotics?

What if SIBO was an issue since high school… and maybe that contributed to celiac disease?

What if when I was pregnant with my first, they would have realized the rash on my stomach was due to celiac disease…

How would my life be different today?

BUT… what GOOD does that do exactly?

Nothing.  Absolutely nothing.

You know what DOES do good?  Counting just how God has followed me each step of the way, and THEN counting my what ifs…

What if I hadn’t gone through a year of specialists and testing, to make me look somewhere else for answers…

What if they had just diagnosed me with MS and put me on their 5 year round of shots…

What if I had been diagnosed with cancer – and just taken the chemo, because I didn’t know any differently…

What if any of those things had happened to my kids… and I didn’t know how to help them??

It’s definitely a better perspective, to know that God is in control of all things….  That it all happens with a purpose.  HIS purpose in mind.

You know, when people say to me, “Correlation is not causation”… I think to myself – you’re right… it’s not.  I’ve never meant that.  However, it’s just ONE more piece to the puzzle.

As I’ve worked (over a year now) to detox, and rebalance my body, my hormones, my life…  I realize the layers that make up “us” and how each contributes to life, or death.  How each one is either helping us live healthy for Him, or carelessly bogging down our system to a state of disease.

I’m happy to report on day… (12?) of my elimination diet… things are going REALLY well.  I had a good blood sugar this morning (I’ve been drinking bone broth before bed), I’ve lost almost all of the weight I was retaining after the whoops moment I had with supplements a month ago, and I’m feeling very hopeful after talking with my doctor last week.

Maybe it’s the time change, maybe it’s the warmer weather on the forecast, but I’m really JOYFUL that this spring is so hope-filled.  Your prayers and notes of encouragement have been priceless to me.  Thank you.  I’m so grateful to have the true meaning of the word “FRIEND” in all of you.  Thanks be to God and His Spirit which guides me each day.

 

“No one has ever seen God; if we love one another,

God abides in us and His love is perfected in us.

By this we know that we abide in Him and He in us,

because He has given us of His Spirit.”

(1 John 4:12, 13)

 

 

Lush Lashes?

Eye make-up from Red Apple Lipstick, and liner/mascara ZUZU brand.

Eye make-up from Red Apple Lipstick, and liner/mascara ZUZU brand.

I always had thick, thick … take an hour to dry hair.

Hypothyroidism and food sensitivities have left me with about a third of what I had.

I really don’t mind the shorter dry time, but it’s taken some getting used to as I run my hands through my thin, absent mane.  That’s for sure!

Now, when I style my daughter’s hair, I remember just how thick and full my head used to be…

About 6 months ago I felt well enough to ask about what I could DO in addition to healing my gut and absorbing vitamins to GET my hair to grow back in fuller…

You see, it wasn’t JUST the hair on my head that was sparse.  My once naturally long and curled eyelashes and eyebrows were also MIA…

Surely I could help them all with one swoop!

Voila – Biotin!  It’s something that is in the foods we eat, but you can safely take more to help make your hair, nails and lashes thicker and stronger – and it works.

I take Solgar brand, and 10,000 mg a day.  Within a few weeks I really noticed a change in my hair and eyelashes.  My hairdresser even mentioned last time that my hair felt healthier than it had felt in a few years…  so that’s great news!!

Progress!  A piece of “ME” back.

I know there are lots of products out on the market that claim to help your nails and hair grow, some may even contain some Biotin!  Make sure you get a quality product with NO fillers!

*Wink*  I missed my lashes – and so happy to report they are BACK!!

Healthy for Him!

“Search me, O God, and know my heart!

Try me and know my thoughts!

And see if there be any grievous way in me,

and lead me in the way everlasting!”

Psalm 139:23-24

Funky Junk

What should I eat today?  How about carrots?

What should I eat today? How about carrots?

 

Well, I was right.  Carrots are getting old.  I might be turning orange again.

Carrots with cinnamon are very good.  Shredded carrots with olive oil – yum.  Carrot soup is pretty tasty too.  I feel like I’m doing pretty well with the diet over all.

In all honesty – this has been more difficult emotionally.  Feeling “hungry” or carb starved is tough, but I feel like the worst of that is over now.  Saying ‘no’ to my fresh case of kombucha is even harder.  I know it’s calling my name.  I’ve been more tired, and allowed for more sleep, less stress…  but it doesn’t always work out that way when you’re the mom and 3 meals are day are required for 10.  I often ate later than the rest, now I REALLY eat later.

I completely lost it today when making breakfast into the late morning, missing my supplements (my essential Esto-DIM) left me feeling at the end of my rope.

It’s ironic, I don’t even realize what is going on – until I snap…

Then it hits me.

I didn’t take my mid-morning supplements!!!!  Ack!

Yes – they’re essential.

A little piece of information came from the doctor on Friday.  I haven’t had a whole lot of time to dive into, but at least I know I’m positive for CYP1A1, and CYP1B1, both gene risks for breast and ovarian cancers – due to extra estrogen.

Not a big surprise – again, confirming what we knew.

If you’re wanting to know if I’m going to go out and get my breasts removed…. or my uterus taken out.  No.  I’m not.

However, it very much proves to me how essential it is for me to take Estro-DIM, and how I need to make sure I’m doing all I can to get other toxins and plastics out of my life.  Specific drugs I need to be careful of – blood thinners for instance, can make me much worse, also things like aspirin, and also chemo drugs like methotrexate.  I also plan to get a thermography scan  (vs. a mammogram).

Basically what the tests said is I’m in need of more antioxidants than the average person.  My liver struggles – and I’m extra sensitive to smells, and drugs/medications, etc.  I’m also at a higher risk for motor neuron diseases and problems with the energy in my cells.

So I must take my antioxidants – including N-actylcysteine (NAC), Milk Thistle, selenium and Vitamin C specifically.  Also eating lots of broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, brussel sprouts, radishes, etc.  (Well, just as soon as I can!

Thank you to those who have been checking in with me, just to see how I’m feeling/ doing.  It means a lot.  This has been a lonely place – just to give up more, and again I’m so many friends who reach out and encourage me.

There is something that people who choose to give up chasing the western medicine diagnosis… and that’s often sympathy.  People have lots of sympathy for a diagnosis…they have sympathy if it means you’re on drugs the rest of your life – the sympathy is – apparently in the name.

For me, the name is just a specific way your body is letting you know what is going wrong.  It’s a clue into what you need to do to “right” the ship.

Sometimes I forget that other people don’t have any clue what it’s like to live with diseases that can’t be seen.  Sometimes I get into my own groups of people who know and think like me – and I’m foolish to assume others “get it” too, when they haven’t felt it.

There was recently a young woman who popped on our Paleo Approach board (I assume seeking about the Paleo lifestyle), but she didn’t have any diseases – she was just seeking it in a way to “be healthy”…  which is super actually.  I’ve heard nutritionist say that’s the one way to avoid the consequences of auto immune diseases being triggered – changing diet NOW, as all with auto immune shouldn’t be eating grains/dairy/sugar.  Unfortunately, it also blind-sided her regarding the daily struggles many who have to be so cautious with food deal with daily, and just what food CAN to do heal the body.  She spoke brashly to members being obsessed by food, and again couldn’t grasp the severity of our food can build us up or tear us down.  Clearly she didn’t understand sensitivities, or the need for supplements these people need to function while our body repairs itself.  Several others congratulated her that she couldn’t understand at this point, she should be grateful!  It wasn’t long before she left the group though, because it wasn’t a good fit.  I think until you’ve “been there” – you simply can’t really understand.  I pray she never has to understand – but I hope she still considers Paleo for her future health!

Thankful for support – in all ways it comes… but mostly from my God who leads me in all ways!  Healthy for Him!

For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways My ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are My ways higher than your ways
    and My thoughts than your thoughts.

Isaiah 55:8-9

 

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