Category Archives: Auto Immune Protocol (AIP)

Overloaded Sinuses

photo_BEETJUICE

I’ve been a terrible blogger lately. It’s really not you, it’s me.  As much as I cut out of my life to prepare for this crazy busy soccer season and preparation to build a new home, blogging just had to take a back seat.

I wanted to update you all on my first round of Fluconazole, how my son’s sinus surgery went, as well as how our Myofunctional Therapy is going along!  It’s been a busy end of summer at our house!

First off, the Fluconazole did help.  Not enough for me to eat raw veggies… but enough to notice a change in distention after eating.  MUCH improved.  We’re talking about round two starting soon, but I definitely want to try it again.  I’ve been more consistent daily with my juices to start my day, and keeping my meat portions in check.  More recently I’ve gone back to keeping all raw fiber out of gut, so only cooked veggies, avocado (1 a day total) and well cooked meats – mainly salmon, chicken, and turkey – with some red meat (Grass fed and finished beef).  I’ve also been studying some on parasites, and cleanses with that.  I ordered SA Wilson’s coffee for this.

My son’s surgery went fabulous, as did this healing period.  The only issues we had were with recovery in the surgical center.  The medical reports (yes, we got them!)  said that the surgery went well and he woke up and went to recovery.   We ended up waiting almost an hour following surgery, to get to see him.  He had to be put on oxygen for about 4 hours because the nurses had drugged him with Demerol, an old drug they used to use in the 70s.  Not cool.  Especially considering we talked in length with the anesthesiologist about his adrenal issues, inability to methylate narcotics, etc.  She totally understood.  She actually came in following surgery and said… “mom was riiiiight.”  So we’re fairly certain it wasn’t her that gave the orders for that.  Meanwhile, we he also had an allergic reaction to one of the other medicines they gave him…  Still we have yet to get the paperwork on this situation to figure out what we need to be aware of.  THAT has been frustrating and is just one of my many beefs with the whole western medicine bullying that can occur.  Clearly you have a right to the records and information – you are the patient.  Especially on an allergic reaction, you need those records to be informed for your health future.

Our family Skype classes start Wednesday with our therapist.  I’m excited.  We got our kits with all of the toys for class, we took all of the “before” essential pictures, and we got our binkis to start doing our muscle therapy during “zone out time” at home.  Our orthodontist still doesn’t seem quite sure what to think… but as the therapist said, some people you just have to “show” for them to get it.  (One of the suggested books is: Close Your Mouth)

I’ve managed to have a sinus attack with our weed pollen counts through the roof in Kansas, followed by some type of virus that went through our family.  Pertussis has been pretty thick throughout the county, so it could very well be that…  you know us though, definitely NOT afraid of the promoted and highly exaggerated “big, bad wolf.”  The kids keep asking when they are going to start coughing.  We’re wondering if with supplements and our diets – if this just won’t be an issue.  The mucous is super thick – but with high levels of Vitamin C, increased probiotics, vitamin D and fish oil – we seem to be faring well.

Some info on treating whooping cough naturally for a 30 year immunity, vs a 3 year (maybe) with the vaccine.

Anyway, for us, so far, so good.

That’s about it for me.  Our trip did do me in, as traveling and all of that jazz always does.  I’ve struggled to get back on track with juicing and having issues with “C” that leave me throwing up because I’m so full.  I really hate that part…

This time when I left, I found myself missing “home” and family even more.  There is something about being with people who just get you, who are a support system,  they encourage and love you.  When I said good-bye to my mother she held on long and cried deep.  I wondered in my heart what it must feel like to know you’d never just “hang out” with your daughter again… how afternoons together, grabbing a movie or a meal wouldn’t be possible because they simply lived too far away.

Not just for a season, but forever.

My acupuncture read out said that I was struggling with stress, and “a broken heart.”  Couldn’t have been more spot on.

Thanks be to God for the burdens and heartache He carries when we can’t.

 “The Lord is close to the brokehearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
Psalm 34:18

 

Busy! Busy! Dreadfully Busy!

SIBO

I think we’ve worn a path to our doctors offices almost 3 hours away from our home, but I’m delighted to report, I believe we’re making some progress.

On my own health front, I have been struggling a bit with some type of hormonal imbalance that I’m guessing is affecting my thyroid.  I made some poor choices about a month ago, and yes… I’m still paying for them.  They were sweet potato chips with coconut oil…. and coconut oil doesn’t like me.  A little bit one day, and little bit more another day… and the next thing you know – I was eating way too many chips that I shouldn’t have been having in the first place and ending up in a lot of pain.

My reactions to coconut oil aren’t as bad as coconut flour… so I lied to myself and thought I could handle it.  But, as with any food that causes AI reactions…  it catches up with you, and it’s never worth it.  By God’s grace, we weren’t able to get the chips for several weeks (and I believe they are still out of stock), so that helped me get back on the right path.

It seems insane though, doesn’t it?  Something like “just” sweet potatoes and coconut oil with sea salt, (other wise safe and healthy ingredients) can affect my gut, throw off my hormones and cause countless breakouts and neuropathy in my back (so irritating) legs, feet and arms.

Because of all of that I gained (almost overnight) about 5 pounds – that I can’t seem to shake either.  This is why I believe thyroid problems are to blame for so many issues that women struggle with concerning weight.  They can cut calories and increase exercise – and still continue to struggle.  But if their thyroid is off = due to a leaky gut,  high cortisol (stress) levels,  poor sleep (inability to stay asleep due to airway obstruction or other hormone issues) – all parts play a role.  Most often, people take sleep meds for something that doesn’t really help balance anything or get to the root cause of the issues for long-term health.

So with that, I’m back on track…  and not planning any less-than-intelligent moves in the near future.

On top of that, after a recent visit to my naturopath, we opted to try Fluconazole to help nip my SIBO in the bud for good.  It was a 10 day dosing schedule, and we might have to do more – but after being on AIP for over a year, and trying every natural help I can… I figured this was worth a shot.  The down sides to the treatment (other than what is in the pill, including RED food coloring – WHY?) was a chronic headache that I had all waking hours.  I imagine some of that is from detoxing whatever bacteria was dying…  but by day 6 I did feel like my bloating was improved.

Now I’m about a week out of my last dose, I can’t say it’s cured that bacteria 100%, but I’m improved dramatically, and with less pain after eating.  Our goal is for me to be able to eat raw vegetables again.  It’s the little things in life. 🙂  We’ll probably try another dose next month.  I’ll keep you posted.

So, combine all of that with a bit of added stress recently with taking on a new house project, with a heavier workload as we gear up for busy time in retail and prep for school, which equals less sleep, and my son having sinus surgery (more on that later), I know my cortisol levels, rest and exercises aren’t where they need to be.  It all matters.

On that note, I better run.  I have a trip to pack for, a follow-up appointment, an ad to create, 2 sessions to work through and I need to magically make a 6 year old’s birthday party happen before we leave in 3 days.

I will be walking, focusing on breathing and saying NO more often.

Healthy for Him.

 

“But we have this treasure in jars of clay,

to show that the sur

passing power belongs to God and not to us.”
2 Corinth. 4:7

How Do You Eat an Elephant?

photo1

If there is one thing that I’ve learned about my health over they years, it’s that restoring your health isn’t an over night process.  There is no magic pill that will fix it, no “one-size-fits-all” answer…

That said, there are common threads in healing, and it starts at getting to the source of a problem.  While reading “The Paleo Approach” book, she talks about how getting your auto immune symptoms in remission, or under control, really depends on your compliance to your route.

I’ve read lots of things that talk about healing MS or other autoimmune diseases, only to NOT talk about an auto immune protocol diet.

Going gluten isn’t mentioned… or being grain-free, or dairy-free… or refined sugar-free… and those are the top 3 things that have to be completely eliminated.  Slowly but surely… we’ll get there.  (But how many people suffer in the process?)

I recently read a commentary on the Paleo Mom Community Facebook page, where someone said the Mayo Clinic actually advised this person to go “Paleo” for autoimmune disease.  “They are big believers of the Paleo diet and advised me to change my lifestyle.”

That surprised me.

I mean, I know it’s true – but you know things are changing if Mayo is starting to pay attention.

While I don’t necessarily like the word “Paleo” – It works – it’s the easiest way to explain to people what it’s like to eat REAL FOOD and to focus on a nutrient dense diet and it’s recognizable by many people…

I think when Paleo doesn’t “work” – there are more food sensitivity issues that need to be addressed.

Sometimes there are also other things that need to be looked at as well… that aren’t diet related.  Sometimes they’re toxins, sometimes they’re structural, and it’s crucial – and you have no clue.

I mentioned a few months ago about my oldest son “tongue thrusting” and being a mouth breather, and the issues that has caused over the years.  I’m sure maybe you thought, how much does that really matter?  (Read this and find out!)  Honestly, I had no clue either.  Our entire family finally met with our Orofacial Therapist to discuss what we need to look at for the kids and myself, and we also had an appointment for our oldest son, who takes first priority with this whole issue.

After much discussion, and evaluation of 5 of the kids, it was determined most have the same issues – deep tongue tie, many had lip and buckle ties, and some type of breathing restriction as well.

She shared about her own kids, and her and her husband’s struggles … and I heard a lot of the similar issues we’re battling.  I’ve read enough to know if you have a poor sleeper,  or a child with speech issues, a child with ADHD personality traits, a slow grower, a poor immune system…  on and on – it’s worth looking into.  THIS could be a missing link to helping to restore your child’s (or your own) health.  Read more about Orofacial Myological Disorders here.

My son has adapted well… I will admit that… but it’s also a huge burden lifted to hear someone who “gets it”… that this needs addressed, and why.  It also gives me great hope that we can DO something for him, so he and the others don’t end up in the position I’m in health-wise.

So we went from the Therapist, to the ENT, and weren’t there very long before we knew surgery was going to be D1’s best option.  He needs a Septoplasty surgery to fix his deviated septum, and they will be removing his adenoids as well.  Oh boy.

So… here’s the long-term goals for revising his tongue thrust and restoring his health:

1. We get him a hole to breathe out of to stop the airway obstruction: Septoplasty, and allow him to heal from surgery (About a month).
2. We do a laser procedure to release his tongue and lip tie, and start therapy which will include regular therapy with deep tissue massage to release a lot of the issues that are currently embedded into his cranium (Functional Cranial Release), neck and shoulders.
3. We look back into expanding his palette, and braces.

Now because this hits home for myself so much…  You know I’m excited to get started on myself as well… I hold all sorts of incredible stress in my neck, and see a chiropractor regularly for adjustments to help me with pinched nerves and my son is the same way.  I’ve always struggled with my posture…  I didn’t know why.  I get a little giddy for HIM just knowing how much better he will begin to feel when this is all said and done!

So how will we eat this elephant?
One. Bite. At. A. Time.

D1’s biggest delight is that his surgery will be in the next 30 days, so he will be able to place high school soccer at a new level this year.  I can only imagine how much faster he will run when he can BREATHE!  Praise be to God for this journey and His leading!

For more reading on this topic.  My Orofacial Therapist recommended the new book:
The Cause and Cure of Malocclusion, by John Mew.

“My son, if you accept my words
and store up my commands within you,
turning your ear to wisdom
and applying your heart to understanding—
indeed, if you call out for insight
and cry aloud for understanding,
and if you look for it as for silver
and search for it as for hidden treasure,

then you will understand the fear of the Lord
and find the knowledge of God.
For the Lord gives wisdom;
from his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
He holds success in store for the upright,
he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless…”

Proverbs 2:1-7

When Food Doesn’t Move

BEET_JUICE

Good news!
My comprehensive stool test came back!

I don’t have bad bacteria in my gut anymore.

No candida.  No more SIBO.

Unfortunately, I don’t have any GOOD bacteria either…and I had meat (undigested in my stool).

Gross.  I know.  But it’s my reality.

So how does THAT happen?

Well, in my process of preparing for the test – I had to stop taking my enzymes, any probiotics, and HCl (the stomach acid helper).  In the mean time, we went on vacation… I stopped taking my MSM… I got a little lazy and was eating some sweet potato chips, with coconut oil, which I”m not supposed to have because it causes reactions… and I started eating some raw veggies… carrots, cucumbers… a few radishes.

BIG Mistake.  BIG.  HUGE.

As of recent I had been battling the every day morning “I think I’m going to throw up I’m so full in guts” feeling.  I got a stomach bug early this week – which emptied my entire body of any food contents that might have thought about sitting, and other than wishing I didn’t have to throw up beet juice, I was just THANKFUL to not feel so sore, and sick.

It was almost a year ago I realized I was battling gastroparesis, you can read more about that if you want.

I knew my stomach was emptying slowly.  I didn’t really consider THAT was my main problem.  I knew it led to other bacteria issues… I figure THAT had to be the main problem…  and maybe it was – before the treatments I did.

But now?  After getting the results back from my stool test… and knowing the SIBO is gone, and candida isn’t an issue… and there are no parasites…

and some more research on gastroparesis….

I realize now – this is more serious, and I need to get more specific before I end up on a complete liquid diet.

I’m happy to report I’m bouncing back from my Iowa trip, and adding MSM in has helped my inflammation a ton (as has getting rid of the sweet potato chips – boo-hoo!)

I spent some time being real with myself, and figuring out a plan because this is serious, and it’s not going away.

I have to say I’m SO glad I did the most recent elimination diet from this book.  It helped me get to this point to see why and what was making me bloat.  While I focused on trying to eat 2 meals a day, and a smooth in the AM (more recently) – in an attempt to encourage “cleansing waves” for my digestion process…  I’m realizing now that approach isn’t going to fix my gastroparesis.

In fact, it’s going to make it worse.  While the well cooked foods, and types of foods are GREAT to encouraging healing…  SMALLER, more frequent meals are required.

I’ll admit.  I had some tears over it.

Realizing that fiber from raw vegetables and fruit simply aren’t an option, and that juicing and well cooked smaller meals like I ate before, are going to be consuming most of my summer wasn’t exactly where I was hoping to go with this.

Selfishly I was thinking we’d be on track to targeting a bacteria, and be able to move forward… away from the chronic pain that has plagued me for a majority of the past 3 years.

You know how when you are in a pit… and God just lifts you up?  

Once again, God doesn’t disappoint.

While researching my newest plan, and awaiting my doctor’s input…  I was SO encouraged by this short video by an 18-year-old from Canada who shared how SHE healed her gastroparesis… after going through a wild goose chase with western medicine.  She talks about several things that I’ m already doing, and a few I’m interested in trying, or getting more serious about.  Specifically acupuncture more regularly.  I’m going on Tuesday.

I also watch this video on what to eat for gastroparesis, and she had her top 10 things to do… again, most of them I’m doing, but it had some great insight.  One of the things I KNOW effects me (and literally made me laugh out loud!)  is  “eat in a calm environment.”  Sorry.  That’s not going to happen any time in the near future anyway, and I know stress is a big problem – I’m fighting regularly to keep under control, and at a manageable level.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read this.   Please don’t pity me.  I am encouraged and hopeful.  Our BIG GOD is a healer – and I’m focused on what He’s doing in me through this process.  Healthy for Him.

Curing the Incurable

What is in Iberogast?

“Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble,
And He saved them out of their distresses.
He sent His word and healed them,
And delivered them from their destructions.”

Psalm 107:19-20

 

Vacation Hang-Over

BAGS_TRIP

 

I think my body was trying to run on full-force the past week.  My goals were to get through the prep of another trip, following our vacation… and just survive.

How much can I fit into one weekend?

A home school conference, and research for 2 children starting high school in a few short months.

Squeeze in a last minute family portrait session with a mad-talented friend who I attribute to God using to reset my health-course and helped to save our family.

A Christ-centered wedding and reception – probably one of the richest events my kids have gotten to witness.  (more on that in a minute)

Add in running to the store each day, planning meals, trying to be one step ahead of what we were doing, and a cat on its death bed at home…

I’m beat.

I knew I was beat last night…  when we arrived home, dinner-less and I just wanted to crawl into bed.  I went ahead and threw some veggies (Cabbage, carrots, celery and radishes)  in a pot with olive oil and salami, cut up pears for a side and called it good.

It’s a good thing I did that.  They gobbled it all up.
Oh wait. I made bacon too.

Bacon makes everything better.

Well.  Not everything.  Since I can’t tolerate pork, or the sugar that it’s often included in it.

Still, I had a nibble last night.  First time in … over 6 months I’m sure?  (and when I say nibble, I mean the last section of my pinky-sized nibble.)

So I wake up this morning…. way after everyone does today, and I feel like I’m moving slowly.

Maybe I’m just tired.

Only everything hurts, and it feels too familiar.

I get the kids their supplements, start some laundry and curl back into fetal position on the couch.

By 10 am the mountains of laundry are making me feel a bit sick, so I wonder if it’s just the fact that we did so much this weekend… or that I really shouldn’t have eaten that bacon nibble.

Maybe it’s the stress, and the lack of rest.

Maybe it’s the fact I feel a bit depressed every time I leave Iowa and my heart aches for family, and fellowship and feeling of “home”.

I don’t know…  but I feel horrid.  Like I could sleep the week away…

It’s a good thing I have lots of children who need me, and that isn’t an option.  Right?

Just. Keep. Moving.

Ok, back to that wedding…

The vows the couple wrote to each other included him promising to the spiritual leader of the family, and hers included her promise of submitting to his leadership.  That’s the first time I’ve heard that spoken – in vows, but it was beautiful… and simple, and perfect.  The reception was food, slide shows and cake cutting… for which they had cupcakes. Very cute.  Other than “their first dance”, there was no dancing.  Later it made sense… no dancing,  no alcohol…  just a celebration of their lives joining as one, thankfulness for their strong family bonds, and fellowship.

I asked my kids what they took away from that.

“I don’t want dancing at my wedding,” D2 said.  “I don’t like the idea of everyone staring at me.”  She is SO her mother.

“I noticed they got along with their siblings, they really loved their family,” D1 gave his input.  This brought up some other good discussion… and made me very encouraged for how we raise our family.

“I want cupcakes at my wedding,” said D7…. “Only not poisonous ones!”  Since we sat right next to the cake table, my husband said we totally should have brought literature on inflammation and grains.  Hah.

Only one woman was brave enough to ask why we weren’t eating the cupcakes, so she got a lesson in alternative options for disease. 🙂  We brought the kids chocolate and fruit strips as a treat.

All in all, I think the message they also received was the importance of choosing a spouse who loves the Lord, and desires to follow Him, and that made it worth it for us to miss soccer championships for our 6 of our 8 soccer players.

An eternal life-lesson is worth more than soccer, any day.

I’m going to continue pushing fluids and taking it easy today.  It’s definitely the most frustrating part of auto immune disease… that you can’t push your body like you used to (not that you should every anyway!).

It’s probably another blessing in disguise that God gives me as a reminder I need Him, and for that – I am grateful.

Keeping me humble.  Healthy for Him.

Oh, and here is a great video of a “chuck box” idea – to tote the things you need while traveling and feeding your family while avoiding eating out.  We travel similarly, and it’s such a help! 🙂  Enjoy!

The LORD replied, “My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”

Exodus 33:14

Adrenal FAIL!

ARIZONA

Oh the ways our body likes to remind us just who is in charge.

I’m back from vacation, and feeling really good over all… but I have to share with you a couple of episodes I had on vacation that were down-right scary.
Before I do that, I’ll hit the highlights:
– I swam a lot, soaked up a lot of sun, had a great time with our kids and got to bed on time every night.
– Despite having to make every meal but one on our trip, the kitchen was HUGE and allowed for the kids to help me without us tripping over each other.  (NOTE: Larger kitchen and full pantry functions much better for 10)
– There was an outdoor table for 10, and the weather was perfect the entire time. (Yes, you may puke, but it was…)
– I’m pretty sure that I was supposed to live somewhere warmer than Kansas, but vacations are good too.

Ok… so that was the highlights.  Here’s the low-down on what else happened.
Our first night in New Mexico, we booked a Homewood Suites room.  It had 3 rooms and a full-sized fridge, which was perfect!  As my daughter and I did our usual OCD clean-routine, we buzzed around the room and my oldest son brought in cartloads of tubs and bags.  I remember making sure the air temp was in the range we were wanting…. 72.  But as we buzzed around, I kept getting hotter and hotter.

I remember things getting a little fuzzy… and when I went out to get another load – something in the hallway smelled…  funky.  Like incents, or something strange.  It was a casino town, and I was concerned about just sending my son off down the hall with no cell phone because he mentioned there were a ton of people in one room “like a party” he said.  So, I was trying to text my husband what was going on…  Only I suddenly couldn’t text, or think… my mind was getting really fuzzy, and I felt like I really needed to lay down before I passed out!  My daughter was getting concerned as I was slurring my speech as well.

I didn’t know what was happening but it was like my energy was zapped and I couldn’t really even care.  It was awful… like an instant flu-paralyzing feeling.

Thankfully, about then, my husband came in with the rest of our kids – and figured out they had the heat on in the rooms, not the AIR… and the blowers were roasting us.  For someone who did hot yoga last year, I was surprised with my body’s reaction to the heat in about a 10 minute time span.  Maybe it was just too much, too fast… I don’t know, but I took note.  After some food, water and COOL AIR, my body came to, and I could help with getting the kids to bed.

A similar thing happened the next night.  When we got to the house we rented, as the evening wore on, we realized the kitchen, (which had many west-facing windows and no window coverings) was roasting – an almost identical event happened… just as the night before, and I began to get concerned for our trip and my well-being.  I was hoping this was NOT a pattern.  We decided for the remainder of our trip that any baking/cooking would be done earlier in the day – and we’d have our lighter meals for dinner – to avoid heating up the kitchen, and making myself sick!

Voila!! No more issues with that the remainder of the trip!

So, if you’re battling adrenal failure, you know what I’m talking about.  It isn’t just physical and emotional stress that gives you the shakes, makes you flu-ish and zaps your energy almost instantly… it can be environmental stress as well, including the temperature.  I did a great job of not “shocking” my body with cold this winter – and always wearing plenty of layers – and I do a pretty good job of just avoiding most stressful people and situations anymore…  but apparently I’m going to really need to watch it with heat and lack of circulating air this summer.  (and continue praying that my body is healed from adrenal failure soon!)

I hope and pray you have SPRING weather where you are!  After a long week back with grey skies, cold temps and rain (which was a blessing, don’t get me wrong) I’m THRILLED that the weekend looks to be gorgeous! 🙂  Enjoy this link to the top 3 reasons Mainstream “Medicine” could be failing you, and what to do about it!

We get to pick up and travel again really soon – thankfully the next trip is only 5-6 hours, vs. two days by vehicle!  I’m planning now what we will eat, and pack… because that is such a key part to making our trips successful and keeping things Healthy for Him!

“This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.”

Proverbs 3:8

 

 

Kind of a BIG DEAL…

PALEO_MOM_LOGO

Well hello!  Glad to see you spring!

I totally forgot how busy spring is… whoa.  In the middle of this craziness, apparently God decided He would use me.  A good friend of mine was setting up a support group in her area for people who wanted to learn about gluten-free/Paleo lifestyle.  I thought that was a grand idea, and wanted to do something “like that” locally too.

So I sent out some feelers to see who might be interested in is.  As providence has it, lots of people were interested.  (Lots to me is over 20).  I think that’s a great start, and could serve as some great encouragement.  Some of the topics we’ll cover at our meetings will be how to get started, tips and tricks and recipes we love/want to share.  My group is more geared towards Paleo/AIP and why and how that works, but I’m very excited – we meet this week!

Another exciting announcements is I’m helping moderate a brand new support community that the Paleo Mom has put together to add more support for people who are using the Paleo Approach to regain their health.  Find it here.  There are tons of new boards within the community, so definitely check it out!  You might even see me moderating there as time allows!

I’m super excited about more information getting out there to the right people.  On a recent YOUTUBE I watched on sleep and Vitamin D, the neurologist shared that most people are on 3-4 meds by the time they are 30.  That is simply nuts.  This isn’t health, and we need to step it up and take responsibility in our lives and for our families.  I’m sad for parents who say their kids are picky – and then doing nothing about it.  We all make choices.

We are the future – do you want health for your children and yourself?  Then dig in… and own up!  God has made loads of foods for us – and no, it isn’t “easy” to change with the way our world has directed us to get JUNK… but if He can allow me to do it for our family of 10 – I’m certain, He can do the same for you and your family!

If you’re feeling like things are a little crazy this spring… hold fast.  God will only allow you to do what He desires you to do.  Don’t be frustrated if you can’t do more… maybe He doesn’t want you to do more.  His peace is in the quiet times.

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”

Psalm 46:1

Are You A Mouth Breather?

MOUTH_BREATHER

I didn’t realize this was such a negative question to ask.  I suppose it could be used as a put down, if I didn’t know better, which I didn’t.

What I’m talking about is Orofacial Myofunctional disorder from being tongue tied.

What is Orofacial Myofunctional therapy all about?

If you are a mouth breather, or you suffer from TMJ, poor sleep habits, drooling, teeth grinding, poor chewing (and therefore, digestion) or have an upper airway obstruction that causes a multitude of behavior problems from poor sleep – than YOU too might need some therapy.  (I already KNEW I did!)

Getting the body to FUNCTION correctly, so you can be well, is very important to us.

Understanding your body, the way God made us each so differently – and learning how to “work with what you have” is key.

I think back to the stress of having my son.

The first grandchild, born right before Christmas…

Born at 9 lbs 3oz, he was a failure to thrive for almost 8 weeks.  Labeled a “slow” nurser, there was more going on than that.  Determined to nurse, and reassured by every 3 day doctor visits, and personalized nursing visits – the professional told me, all was ok.  But wasn’t ok… and I can almost blink and feel the emotions I felt back then.

Helpless.  Unsupported by family…  It was a pretty lonely road for my husband and I with our first child, but a great learning opportunity that God eventually used to grow us towards Him.  The one person who really supported us, happened to be my doctor’s wife, and the Godmother of our children.  She understood a slow-gainer, and the frustration and stress of your first baby dashing those hopes of being a ‘by the book’ baby.  She brought me lots of info, was my shoulder to cry on and let me know he would “ok”…

I’m sure I had post pardum depression.  I hardly slept.  He cried ALL THE TIME.

I think now… he wasn’t JUST hungry… he wasn’t able to swallow from the breast properly.  He eventually learned how to adapt to a bottle, and I pumped my milk for him until he was about a year old.  But, not before I lost much of my breast tissue and cried for nights on end.

What seems to happen now (commonly) with just a clip of the tongue while the baby is still in the first few weeks of life, was missed… with him – and all of our children.  Some how.  It just shows up differently in each one.

That oldest son is getting his 3rd set of braces off soon… because of his tongue thrusting.  After his second set, and going to only “night wear” of his retainer – they shifted back within 6 weeks.  The orthodontist suggested “tongue training” at the time… but I had no idea what that meant, or how that would even be possible.

He has battled drooling from only a few months of age, and lived in a bib.  They even did a stomach sonogram to insure that food wasn’t causing his spit up sessions after a doctor was concerned his value by his esophagus wasn’t sealed.  I tease my son about it now, when he “forgets to swallow” but only because I didn’t understand it – until now.  I don’t do that any more.

He’s never been able to swallow pills…  and again, I think “you just do it.” What could possibly be the problem?

Unless you don’t really know how to swallow “back” – but only thrust forward.

Again the guilt seeps in.  Where was the medical community to tell me and guide me through this?

No wonder he had motion sickness, and awoke from naps crabby…. every. day.

No wonder he’s a night owl, like me.  It’s hard to fall asleep, to stay asleep… to feel well rested.

So, we’re working on our consult for our family.  I’m not sure of the cost of this type of thing, but I’m guessing (again) that it’s out of pocket.  The therapy after it’s cut is important… in retraining just how all of those neck and head muscles work together.

Who knew?

It’s crazy that I would be so excited about something like this… but I am.  I’ve started focusing on sleeping on my back, and the deep breathing through my nose with my mouth closed.  I want my kids to be able to rest well, and hopefully function more as God intended, for His glory.  Healthy for Him!

“The Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.”

Job 33:4

 

 

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

 

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