I have made so many dietary changes in my life and I did it by myself.  Occasionally I would have a helpful friend listen to me and we would give a chance to hear each other out, but usually only about 20 minutes or so.  But what people don’t realize is that dietary changes bring out real gut emotions that you probably have no idea are there!  In fact, the mention of your own personal diet changes can make other people feel defensive about their choices even when that is not your intention at all.  I think we all know we need to eat well, but there seems to be some inconsistency with who and how it’s going to happen.  All of this dietary talk reminds me of a comment I made during my gymnastics lesson where I told my teacher “I was just hoping the back handspring would happen to me, I don’t like throwing my body and head where I can’t see.”  I think that sometimes can happen with our plans to eat healthy.  Well if my wife eats healthy and my parents are eating healthy, then by default, so will I and it’s just going to be like that.  That was my rational with my back handspring too.  Well, I have a good teacher and he can do a back handspring and so-and-so can do a back handspring so I am just going to be able to do one.  Nope!  Not the case!  I have to throw my body and head 100% where I can’t see to get results and hope that I that I am going to land on my feet.  That’s kinda how changing your diet feels.  (Of course I plan to practice my back handspring as should one their healthy eating)! 

I have never had any eating disorder whatsoever, but man, getting rid of this or that and no longer being able to eat samosas at Chartara drove me crazy sometimes!  For me, fast food is gabbing an avocado and cutting it open myself, so not as exciting as ordering some item and having ready for me 2 minutes from when I ordered it.  You don’t realize how much love and comfort are in certain meals or foods until you let them go.  Then you realize, you gotta find some love and comfort in other areas of your life, and well, that is just not convenient sometimes.  Eating the way your body is truly intended to eat is a burden and it’s not easy all of the time.  Even though the benefits of it out weigh the cons and you can rationalize your motivation, it is not that simple for most people that I know, actually no one has ever said it was easy, because it just isn’t!

All of the social situations and well intentioned meals made that you just cannot eat seems to pile up.  You go to a “healthy” place to eat, they misunderstand you, you are starving, then they bring a meal you know if you eat, it’s just going to make you sick.  So you drink water and have an internal hissy fit.  But it gets better.  You plan ahead, meet different people more in line with your eating patterns, and learn what places you can and cannot go to eat.  It gets easier.  You will finally let go of all of that extra stuff around eating, then you get to eat for your goals, your beauty and you eat foods that are your medicine.

For years, I loved eating processed sugary foods and I could with no visible consequences.  I took birth control so my skin was crystal clear and my body was in reasonable shape for my standards during my dietary dark ages.  Processed and refined foods are addictive and rightly so.  They are chalked full of chemicals, preservatives and ingredients and make your brain jump around with happiness.  So you eat them, and then your stomach says “I’m not full”, so you eat some more, and your stomach says “I’m not quite full yet”, and you eat some more until you have eaten four times as much as you would normally eat with a nutrient rich plant based meal.  So many extra calories, chemicals, unhealthy fats, sugar, and processed ingredients.  You want a body that makes sense, then eat foods that make sense.  If you can’t read it or pronounce it, what do you expect you digestion to do with it?  So we just eat it anyway and hope for the best? 

Anyway, for those of you feeling all alone with your ‘health nut’ choices, know that you aren’t.  Many of us have successfully let go of the cravings, addictions and emotions that hold us in eating patterns and choices that no longer serve us.  You don’t just get health, you create it.  No one else can create that health for you, but perhaps it would be nice to think that was the case?  At the end of the day it’s just you and your fork and your mouth and you are the one calling the shots.  Let food be your medicine not your psychologist, take a bite in the right direction, whatever that direction may be for you.

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Reversing MS with diet is not new news.  There are lots of us doing it all the time.  Give yourself the right to listen to people getting the results that you want!

http://www.terrywahls.com/

http://www.annboroch.com/

I am serious. I cannot wait to be 35. Let me tell you why. It has been scientifically proven that every 7 years we renew our atomic structure completely. That is a 100% new you. Just think of all the amazing things you can do over the course of 7 years. All of the emotional debris we can get rid of, the toxicity in our cells that we can rid our bodies of and the enhanced physical appearance that we can create. I believe this is true and look forward to this transformation.  In accomplishing well being it’s not always about what we have, it’s often what we were willing to let go.

Using is raw plant based diet is one item I will embrace one my 100% renewal program over the next 7 years. The next will be spreading health and wellness to as many people as I can. For example, tomorrow morning I am buying a full spectrum sauna for my business Wisconsin Wellness and Healing Arts (http://wisconsinhealingarts.com/)! This way willing individuals in the Madison area will be able to rid their bodies of toxic residue from chemicals, pesticides and over cooked oils and fats right in my office. All of the people I get to help and meet everyday will keep me on my goal. Hearing others stories and personal life transformations help keep me inspired and focused.  We can create a healthier you, a healthier me and a healthier world.  Why not change Wisconsin into the wellness state?  Instead of people saying, “Aren’t you known for good beer and cheese?”  Instead we will hear “Wisconsin, isn’t that where all those health nuts are from?”  After all, we are all here for a beautiful, fun journey and we are all here together for a reason.

What age are you excited to get to?  What is your state going to be known for in 7 years?

Part of healing my multiple sclerosis was the realization that I HAD to be active.  I had to get out for walks, yoga, capoeira and the like to make a real difference in how I felt.  I took on capoeira as a challenge to myself and my healing journey.  If you have ever seen capoeira, it looks hard (it is hard).  To someone who hasn’t seen it, I find myself saying “It’s kinda like kung fu break dance fighting.”  Seriously, just look it up because my description does it no justice.  It is not just a performance, it is the way you live your life.  My first response when I saw capoeira was “Wow, that was really cool.  I could never do that.  My body doesn’t work like that.”  I let that very limited view be my stance for awhile on the subject, but then something in me changed.  I started to realize if I was going to reverse something as strong as MS, I was going to need to reverse my way of thinking and my concept of aging as it related to my body.  So I began slowly training capoeira.  I was sore.  It was hard.  I looked “stupid” doing it.  It did not come easy and I felt so uncoordinated for the first 6 months.  I am naturally talented, so I often can start something new and fake my way through it looking like I have done it for years.  Not this.  The only thing that gets you better at capoeira is dedication and practice.  There is no cutting corners with capoeira and I enjoyed this part of it.  Now I am doing things with my body I never thought I would be able to do.  Now I take gymnatistics and use my body in ways that I couldn’t even when I was young.  Strength and flexibility are making their way back into my body and I feel I am reversing aging on all levels.  Thank you Omulu Guanabara Capoeria for the physical, emotional and creative strength you have so humbly taught me!

I recently made a “warm-up” mix for my capoeira group, Omulu Guanabara Madison (http://www.madisoncapoeira.com/).  I made it on the fly to celebrate the importance of movement, no matter where it comes from or how you look when you do it.  My capoeira name ‘agulha’ means ‘needle’ in English.  Jamie ‘Mandioca’ looked at me during the nicknaming ceremony and blurted it out and that’s how I got it.  How fitting for an acupuncturist and dj!  The more I think about it, the more I realize that is how I look when I play as well, straight up like a needle.  That is not how one should look by the way, so my New Year’s resolution is to keep my butt down when I play (and get to class more often), but really, I really do like my nickname..

Download this mix on my soundcloud page.  Feel free to share!

http://soundcloud.com/dj-urbane/omulu-guanabara-madisonImage

One by one, my clients call and cancel today due to the snow. Hope this mix below gives you hope, light and optimism through the darkness of winter.

My first post.  I feel nervous, like the time when I was sixteen and played my first rave at an American Legion in northern Indiana, except I’m wearing clothing that fits and my hair is its natural color…  This blog will be a place where I have recovered from my MS (multiple sclerosis) diagnosis and will continue to do so over the course of many years to come.  I do this by eating beautiful pure food, listening to inspiring fun music, participating in the beauty of life all around and connecting with exciting and interesting people, and telling parts of my story when it seems right.  Consider this blog a forum where I can learn from you, and perhaps, you may pick up a thing or two from me:  A way I can be held accountable and in so doing so, keep me well, vibrant and alive.

When I tell people all of the things I have done and continue to do for my health, many comment “Isn’t that inconvenient?”  My reply is “no,” but what I can tell you is that not being able to feel your legs or being so dizzy you are unable to lift your head without vomiting- THAT is inconvenient.  I wish I could tell you everything I do I learned in a book my MS specialist gave to me when I first got diagnosed, a straight forward “Heal Your MS” book, but that is not case:  Instead I got a drug encyclopedia.  Everything thing I have had to do I learned by doing my own research, experimentation and examination.  My remission has not come easy or without sacrifice, but I can tell you I would not change a thing.  Doubt, fear, insecurity and shame all plagued me as the tin of the diagnosis pierced through me and I tried to navigate my way.  A single mother of a two year old, I worried and worried away.  Many things I had once enjoyed left my life immediately; gluten, dairy and sugar.  Alcohol eventually left 4 months later, but that stuck to me longer than I anticipated.  I quickly read ‘The China Study’ and started asking questions to as many people I could about autoimmune and diet.  What do I eat?  I knew there was no clear answer on this, so I slowly started formulating my own “MS diet.”

Not only has my diet come a long way, but physically, emotionally and spiritually, I am a different person in the best way possible.  Some things about me will never change, like the fact that I grew up in New Jersey and will constantly buy hoop earrings no matter how many pairs I have, but I am happy to say my Jersey girl attitude about things is gone (most of the time)!  I have always had a healthy life.  I had already completed my Masters in Oriental Medicine when I was diagnosed.  I was a practicing acupuncturist and massage therapist eating mostly organic and exercising regularly.  I thought I knew all there was to know about health, but the MS blew that facade fast away.  Just because I could academically connect the dots, did not mean I was living a life of health and wellness for myself.  This life I have been given is one where you walk the walk, I don’t just get to talk the talk, grab a coffee between patients and go out for drinks on the weekend after a long week.  I stay have to stay consistent on all levels, for me, that is the only way.

For dinner right now I am having a fresh salad made of lettuce, carrots, apple, walnuts, lime juice, topped with 5 olives and sunflower oil.  On the side, I made flax crackers and guacamole.  This is a snip-it of the things I do that keep me well.  I am not going to be putting recipes on this blog.  I don’t follow them and why should you?  Formulate your own approaches to all things, not just the food on the table.