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Sjogrens relief; eastern medicine ideas? i'll TRY it!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

some of you may know that i have a 'condition' (some call it a disease, some don't) named Sjogren's. It dries out my body over time; when i'm old i'll have fewer teeth and much more pain than many people. It can have neurological symptoms also, but let's hope that i get hit by a meteor first... k, i'll take the symptoms, lol !

in the past 14 months i have gone thru surgery to correct the strangulation of my spinal cord, and after spending four months basically immobilized, i have begun having such a lot of leg pain that at times i need to use the electric wheelchair carts at Any store that has them; and sometimes it's just too painful to walk to and from the car also. I got more active again, hoping that would ease the pain, but it simply moved from my back and hips into my lower legs and knees and feet, and at times into my elbows, and upper/lower arms. GRRR... and western docs have begun to look at me like i need a shrink, simply 'cause it doesn't fit their textbook ideas of what any one problem might look like.

recently i've had a major increase in the amount and frequency and duration of aching/ throbbing/ painful legs; not cramps or restless legs, just a constant pain that can reduce my mobility and Still not! go away. I've taken anti-inflammatory ibuprofen infrequently before, but lately i've had to down them two or three times a day to stay off of stronger painkillers, and i do Not want to progress onto stronger anti-inflammatories, which can have many fairly awful side effects of their own.

i'll be trying a course of acupuncture, refining my diet according to eastern medicine ideas of energy flows and heat/cool damp/dry, etc; but i've also decided to return to the low- or no- dairy of my younger years, since i already had determined decades ago that i'm slightly 'allergic' to cow's milk. i Do do well with goat milk and cheeses, and fortunately they're a LOT more available than they were 30 years ago!! (i used to have to drive or ride a train for 1+1/2 hrs to go to esoteric 'new age' food stores in the Village in nyc!) O, the Age of WonderBread!

i also happened across the book Wheat Belly, and read enough of it in the market aisle to gather that ... well, wheat as we know it today is NOT the wheat our ancestors, and even our grandparents, ate! Bio-availability be darned, i guess.!, in the pursuit of making More food not Better food, for more people. Soooo, ~done with soapbox, sry!~ i'm going to try to get the book from our library or from a friend and read it thoroughly.

Since i was already leaning toward making breads with almond, coconut, and other flours, i think i'll move more swiftly in that direction. My 'puncturist suggested i stay off of wheat even without just cutting gluten, and i already know that when i eat carby-type wheaty breads, i WANT MORE of stuff i would prefer not to want more of! Like sugar, cakes, etc... and of course coffee, cofffee, cooofffffeeeeeee, to gulp down while i munch on the Soft Stuff!

I also lose weight more easily when i keep to an ocean-centered, eggcellent type of diet, and keeping to veggies In Season will even be more Affordable!

I'll try to blog again about this as i go forward; hmmm... of course, it'd be nice to get some more sleep, too, LOL....

Member Comments About This Blog Post:

    Dr. Lizzie! I can't wait to hear how much better you are feeling! Lots of great advise....did you contact MzzChief for the at home test? I'm curious! See you on da Island Sista! emoticon

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VONBLACKBIRD 3/23/2013 12:51PM

    I have RA but the drying like you do and I think Eastern medicines help alot. Acupuncture helps a lot but found massage with the realigninment my therapist does helps the most. I started stretching exercises for 10 minutes a day and it relieves some pain. I know what you mean about the harder meds...but I was on high doses of ibuprofen and it caused ulcer...and now my liver is not good so have to watch anything I take orally. I use a prescription rub called Volteren which helps some too and by-passes the stomach. Hope you can get this all under control soon. Losing weight has helped me alot and has been slow to do. I started walking only 10 minutes per day and could only stand that much at a time. Then finally went to 2 10minute stretches a day and now can walk about 20 minute stretches. I'm going to try to up it to 10-20more minutes per day this year. It took me a year to pull off 30lbs and need to lose twice that so what if it takes a year for another 30lbs..every little bit will help. emoticon

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WATCHMEGO! 3/22/2013 6:06AM

    I read Wheat Belly and decided to give up wheat. I feel so much better when I don't eat wheat!

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BOPPY_ 3/22/2013 4:44AM

    Before bioengineering, centuries of selective breeding by man has created food stuffs bearing little resemblance to those produced by "nature". If you're interested in the topic, I recommend Guns Germs & Steel, as a compelling intro.

I'd like to say something like I "enjoyed your articulate and thoughtful description of your condition, and issues", but that sound way to sadistic. However, I do want to thank you,

Lee emoticon

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MZZCHIEF 3/21/2013 2:47PM

Loved your blog... looks like the misery you've been thru, has not robbed you of your storytelling abilities and sense of humor!

Best of luck with all of this, will be interested in hearing what relief you've found for your condition.

As for the dairy and wheat situation... there's a test you can do at home, to pin point your problem with dairy. Provided of course, that you're up for it.

If you're interested, leave me a note on my Sparkpage!

: )

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PARASELENIC 3/21/2013 2:38PM

    You have a clear plan, and a doc that you trust who is willing to experiment with you. I think this is a very progressive way to approach your condition. If anything, (because I always give advice), I would keep a detailed journal of how you are feeling throughout the day, especially before and after eating-- you can even just add notes to spark's food tracker....

that will give you a good look-back, where you can use the data to really look at the food triggers and their relationship to your pain levels/ inflammation/ rest, etc. The more detailed you get, the more you will get out of this--

It might not be immediately evident, but over time, you will see patterns-- e.g. the day after I eat sunflower seeds my legs hurt, or right after I eat rice I get sweaty-- knowing more can only help you and your acupuncturist determine the best form of treatment.

Please keep us up to date on what is working for you and what you have learned-- it can only help others on their own journey!

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TIME2BLOOM4ME 3/21/2013 2:01PM

    I will be following your progress. I too have an autoimmune condition. My MD put me on a special detox, cleanse, nourishment type program that is helping me a lot. She did tons of labs to see what I was low in, had too much of, etc. It's making major improvements. I love to read up on what is helping different autoimmune issues.

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