Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Comforts Of A Rainy Tuesday!

Yes, I'm riffing on the title of the wonderful Alexander McCall Smith book,
(book five of the Isabel Dalhousie series)!

I woke up to RAIN this morning!  And it hasn't blown over!  Yay!
In fact, it's only 77 degrees right now!
I am going to enjoy every moment.

Stephen has taken to relaxing on the arm of the couch like this:
 (Our Roomba, Sandy, was vacuuming the kitchen when this picture was taken, so please 
excuse the chairs and cat scratching posts all over the place!) 

He was also watching birdies out the window with his shining big eyes!

I am still juicing every day.  This is what a normal juice is for the past couple of weeks:
2-3 carrots, one peach, one pear, 2 stalks celery, 2 leaves kale, one bunch parsley (this picture shows an orange, as well).  I love something really sour in there - it masks a lot of the bitter green veggie taste.  Lemons are especially good!  But there aren't any organic lemons in the stores right now.  Guess they aren't in season.

After my juice, I usually get a spike in energy and mood.  Yay for nutrients!

Health Update:
Overall, I haven't been feeling very well the last week (thus the disappearance from the blogosphere) . . . not only have I been having more digestive distress, but I've been very fatigued and my joints have been hurting.  I had a big curriculum order placed last week (a church in Texas ordered the entire first module PLUS holiday lessons - hooray!  I'm excited for their students to hear how much God loves them in a way that will make sense to them!), so I've been working hard and not feeling well, which was emotionally tough.  But yesterday I started bouncing a back a bit.  Now I have to make sure not to do too much while I'm still healing.  

I made an appointment with my Gastroenterologist to talk about why I'm not taking the scary drugs he prescribed (Uceris and Lialda).  They have side effects I do NOT like, and there are other drugs that are more effective. 

Uceris is an immuno-suppressant, which I won't take because I don't agree with the overall strategy of weakening my immune system to decrease problems. It seems like a possibly faulty assumption to me that my immune system is overactive.

Lialda is an anti-inflammatory, which I won't take because a natural supplements, Boswellia, has been shown in a double-blind placebo study to be equally effective at reducing inflammation in Crohn's patients and it comes from a plant (frankincense!) and has no side-effects!

It's annoying to me that doctors are sold drugs by the pharmaceutical companies, and that's what they automatically prescribe ME, even though there are better and SAFER and more EFFECTIVE options out there! GRRRRR!!!  (picture me with a face of righteous indignation!)

I am not necessarily anti-pharmaceutical, though; I am thankful for the many medications that have been discovered that have helped people (me!) get better from things.  

There is a drug that's been shown to be VERY effective for Crohn's Disease in a teeny tiny dose (4.5 mg).  It would have to be prescribed off-label because it's only been approved by the FDA at a much higher dose (50 mg) for recovering heroin addicts, but click here to read more about the science behind Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN).  This drug is about 30 years old and is useful in almost every disease out there, it seems.  It costs about $15/month (which is probably why it's not being prescribed - it doesn't make anyone much money).

Click here for studies on LDN and auto-immune diseases in general
Click here for the best study on LDN and Crohn's

I would like this to be the next step in treatment for me because of the high success rate (67% of patients with Crohn's in the study went into remission and 89% demonstrated response to treatment - just by adding this tiny dose of LDN!) and because the side effects are minimal (and not scary - the only one that people mention is vivid dreams during the 2-4 am window).  

So I am meeting with my doctor on Thursday to talk about why I don't like the medication options he has offered me, what I AM taking and the science behind it, what other options he sees and recommends, and the possibility of trying LDN.  I am praying that he is open minded and that he doesn't just write, "non-compliant" in his chart and get angry.  If he is NOT helpful, I also made an appointment with the Integrated Health Center in Phoenix (thanks to my friend Jessica for the referral!) so I can get medical advice from someone (an MD) who will look for the least negative treatments before jumping to the scary ones.

Time for some more work - another lesson must be delivered tomorrow!

1 comment:

  1. So smart of you to do your own research. I've struggle with the mentality of symtoms = this drug irregardless of side effects. If I hadn't investigated other options with my first GI issue I would be on prednisone and you know how bad that stuff is. The challenge is that I had to pay for the alternative (food allergy test, non prescription supplements, chiro) but in the long run I am going to run longer. I'm praying your doctor is receptive. If not I'd keep trying till I found one. Love you, Me