I tried adding a new page to my website, but until I can ask my webmaster to do so, this is going to have to be a blog post. For some reason I can add a page, but it doesn't show up at the top of the website. Oh well. I never did quite understand these things and since I broke the site once, I'm not willing to risk that again! Many of you have been reading my blog and my books over the years and you have probably heard me talk about my health a time or two. I don't want to focus on it, but I will say that I consistently look for ways to improve my life, spiritually, mentally, and physically. I manage to fail miserably when it comes to getting enough exercise - new goal for this year! But part of that reason has been pain limitations.
Briefly - in case you can relate - I have chronic pain that some call fibromyalgia, others think it a different syndrome, along with some arthritis and back issues. Of course, stress of any stripe makes things worse. And no matter what they say, I believe the weather plays a role. But I digress.
If you are like me or have faced any of these things, you know that pain gets old. And the older we get, the more we do battle with it. But I've learned a few things I want to pass on to you, just in case it helps.
These are three things I'm doing to help and they do:
- Changed my diet. I went to a new doctor who tested my vitamin levels and other deficiencies and she put me on a restricted diet to see what helped. Here's what I've found.
- Avoid grain as much as possible. Not just gluten. Grain. There are two brands that make grain-free pizza, pasta, and bagel - Against the Grain and Cappello's. When I'm in a hurry and want pizza, these make an easy meal.
- Avoid dairy. Okay, I cheat on this. I eat butter (the real stuff) and cheese on these pizzas, but most of the time I stay away from cheese and milk. I have found a brand of cheese (ricotta is the only one I've tried so far) from Kite Hill that is made from almonds but tastes exactly like cheese. I love it with almond crackers.
- Avoid most night shades - eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, potatoes. Okay, I cheat on the potatoes and very rarely on the tomatoes. But we don't eat spaghetti any more, which used to be a weekly staple in our house.
- Avoid soy. Soy really isn't good for us from what I've read and been told and why deal with it? I have found plenty of good chocolate that doesn't use it, and I don't eat it in anything else except Chinese food, but they use too many ingredients I can't eat.
- Avoid citrus if you have arthritis. Oranges, lemons, limes - if needed in baking they're probably okay but I stay away from eating the whole fruit.
- So what do I eat? The "avoids" kind of sound like the world has tilted. But not really. I eat most fruits and veggies, except those listed. I make easy meals like chicken with coconut oil and garlic or the roast chicken I made for Easter that was amazing from Elana's Pantry. Who knew that chicken tasted good with prunes and green olives?
- I also make quick lamb patties or hamburgers - grass fed when possible - we just eat them with mushrooms or things besides ketchup. Sweet potatoes are an easy side, and sometimes I get creative and bake or make something that takes more than ten minutes. I make a huge salad at the beginning of the week and it lasts a few days for lunches. Breakfast is normally fruit and maybe a grain-free muffin or bagel.
- I take daily supplements. I can't tell you what to take, but if you suffer from chronic pain, it wouldn't hurt to be tested for deficiencies. And one supplement that can help some people is Garden of Life Joint Support Supplement - Wobenzym N Systemic Enzymes, 200 Tablets. It was first introduced in Germany and for me, it helps.
- I've been experimenting with essential oils for the past year. I can't claim healing from them, but I love the way they smell, make my skin and hair feel, and help with mood - especially when the day is dreary or I need to relax. I list more about the oils I use on my doTerra website. I'll put a link to the page in the sidebar for future reference, if you are interested in specific oils. That page explains it a lot better than I can, but I must say peppermint oil (one drop) in my tea is great for a wake up or headache quencher and wild orange and peppermint mixed together smells great when rubbed in with coconut oil as a base into the skin.
That's about it for now. I'm always looking for new ways to feel better and exercise is next on my list. I can't wait to get back to bike riding this summer, but our weather still has me riding in the house. The cardinals are telling us that spring is here though, so perhaps they are right.
I would love to hear what things have helped you, so please pass on your tips of things that worked and didn't to make you feel healthier.
I hope you are helped by some of this. Life is never easy if you hurt. I hope my experiences help someone hurt less.