For years, I experienced numerous medical “complications”. Think autoimmune, without the official title. About once a year, when the hives, swollen face, fatigue, and other symptoms became too much for me to handle, I would walk into my primary care physician’s office with a list of issues, only for him to smirk at my concerns, order blood tests, and send me to specialist after specialist.
I’ve seen a cardiologist, an OB/GYN, a dermatologist, an allergist. I’ve worn heart monitors. I’ve had to have an IUD removed and a uterine ablation performed. I’ve been shot up with steroids. I’ve had my entire back smeared with allergens and skin tested multiple times. I’ve been diagnosed with tachycardia, polymenorrhea, eczema, and numerous contact and food allergies. I was prescribed medication after medication… and nothing changed.
Then COVID happened.
Pro-vaccine, anti-vaccine…. we’re all entitled to our opinion. I respect that. But for me… I was concerned that my doctors still hadn’t put a name to or resolved any of my medical concerns, and I sure as shit wasn’t going to put something else in my body that hadn’t been fully tested. I called my doctor and asked for a medical accommodation. I was told, “we can’t give you a waiver, but we can treat whatever symptoms result from the vaccine”.
At that moment, I lost whatever respect I had left for my doctor and our society’s approach to medicine, as a whole. It isn’t health care, people, it’s sick care.
After months of research, I happened upon the name of a Naturopathic doctor who specialized in nutritional medicine, herbal supplementation, and a holistic approach to identifying and resolving issues. She asked me to complete a food log, a questionnarie on symptoms, we talked about sleep, exercise, what supplements I was taking. I took a food sensitivity blood test. She didn’t smirk at my carefully crafted list of issues and concerns. She actually thanked me for it!
<ENTER BRIGHT LIGHT ILLUMINATING, TRUMPET PLAYING, BIRD SINGING AH-HA MOMENT>
So why am I not over the moon happy?
I am currently smack dab in the middle of week six of an elimination diet. You see, the thing about nutritional medicine, you have to be willing to put in some very hard work to see the results. In addition to eliminating the top offenders from my food sensitivity test (eggs, peanuts, dairy, pumpkin), I’ve also had to cut out all grain/gluten, added sugar, oils (except for coconut and olive), and processed foods. I don’t eat meat. I don’t drink alcohol.
That leaves nothing but a whole lot of fruits, veggies, beans, and fish. For six fucking weeks. Fun times.
I’ve had to come up with some creative ways to bring a little happiness back into my diet. Did you know that a can of black beans, vanilla, a couple of dates, and cacao powder makes a delicious “brownie batter” dip? And air fried Lima beans dipped into whipped <homemade> hummus is an awesome, crunchy alternative to chips? And sweet potatoes can be toasted and eaten as a stand in for “bread”? <okay, this one takes quite a bit of imagination>. BUT, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. The goal of this elimination diet is to heal my body so that I can reintroduce these foods back into my diet without all of the previous issues.
My new doctor has uncovered things in a few short months that I have been chasing for YEARS with my primary physician and specialists. YEARS. She suspects a MTHFR gene mutation which makes it really hard for my body to detox harmful substances and toxins. On top of that, I have 20+ years of working in aircraft maintenance, where our bodies can actually stockpile those carcinogens and toxins. We’ve had to do some serious work to uncover and treat my body as a whole, but man-o-man, it has been worth it!
I take ZERO prescription medications <she does have me on a few supplements to help with the detoxification process (Chlorella, NAC, probiotic, etc.)>. My skin flare ups have all but disappeared. My digestion has improved. My eyes are no longer puffy when I wake up. My immune system is stronger. I only have one menstrual cycle a month. I am sleeping. My joint pain has disappeared. My brain fog is lifting. I feel better than I have in a very long time.
But goddamnit, what I wouldn’t give for a piece of chocolate right about now.
As a P.S., trust your instincts. My brother insinuated that I was a “hypochondriac” when describing my adventures in health care. If you know deep down in your gut that something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. If what you’re doing now isn’t working, take a step back and approach it differently. We eat a ton of fucking garbage. Even with this push for plant-based, look at how many fillers and additives are in that “healthy option”. There are toxins in everything we come in contact with. Our bodies are meant to naturally rid ourselves of those toxins, but sometimes it needs a little help. Like mine did. He can say what he will, but I look forward to running circles around my brother in the coming years. 😏
2 thoughts on “Eliminate all Happiness”
Preach, gurl! Medicine is a business and there are doctors that suck at their jobs. Keep this in mind in terms of your diet, most food sold today is intended for maximum shelf life, nutrition is secondary. Anything you can pull off a shelf and eat (processed food) is full of preservatives that BEST case your body processes as glucose, and take it from this four toed sugar foot, the diabetes loves to eat.
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Thanks for your read and comment, friend! I hope that I didn’t come across as someone who despises all traditional medicine. There is definitely a time and place. The advances in medicine are mind-blowing. I have several family members still here today because of some amazing surgeons and doctors. I understand and appreciate the complexity and skill required to perform said medicine. BUT….. If it really was “health care”, there would be the promotion of healthy eating, supplementation, exercise, and less medication/surgery.