Posts Tagged ‘CFS’

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CFIDS: Considerations on Living Life Happy

January 29, 2010

It’s been awhile now that I lost my zombie status as a chronic fatigue syndrome girl.   After having discovered the marvelous affects of a NT Factor supplement regimine,  I’ve managed by the grace of God to get a good portion of my life back.  Nothing short of a true miracle in my opinion.  For so many years, I was virtually bedridden, now I’m able to attend church and bible study during the week, as well as venture out to teach people how to use their computer as a part-time side job.   Moreover, these activities have been in addition to accomplishing the daily life tasks of showering, getting dressed, grocery shopping, making dinners, doing dishes, moderate housecleaning – all of which were entirely lost to me as a zombie.

My life isn’t sparkling perfect by any means.  There is always that daily ‘cost factor’ that I still have to take into account.  Any chronic fatigue person knows that if you do a task on any given day, the very next day is dedicated to rest.  I still have that too if I’ve done something big.  And I still can’t shower every day (I can hear you people say “ew!” but hey, it’s reality for CFIDS), I mean why waste that energy on something stupid like smelling wonderful when I can do something more important instead.   There is still always an ‘energy-wallet’ to keep in account.  Normal people know nothing of this, but chronic fatiguees know well that there is only so much daily energy to be had, and once it’s spent – forget it – can’t do another ding dang thing.  

But I’ve finally accomplished enough energy to formulate some real life relationships and then have the energy still to maintain them.  Actual social dates! Outside my house!  Unheard of, in the past many years.   The other thing that was lost to me during the zombie years was the ability to feel –  I had no idea that emotions could suck up all my energy.  Now I can actually feel emotions of happiness, having fun, and unfortunately being sad or upset.   Huge energy expense there, and if I get too happy or too upset, just feeling emotion zaps my wallet completely.  When I was a zombie, there wasn’t enough energy to feel anything at all.

Here’s the kicker – I’ve become so much closer to normal that I don’t even take NT Factor anymore.  Haven’t taken any for months, and yet the results seem permanent from having taken the supplements for about a year’s time.  Amazing.   I’m no where near normal, as I keep saying, but I’m so very thankful that the improvements that I’ve made seem permanent.  The clinical studies on NT Factor show only a portion of improvement for CFIDS patients – in other words, a cure wasn’t found.  I still struggle, still can’t shop like ladies do, still can’t stand and talk, but I have a new life that I’m living with “happy” in the title.

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Where I’ve been, where I’m going….

July 11, 2009

I’ve been travelling through some astounding chronic fatigue days of late. I’m feeling better still. I remember those days of pouring myself into the closest chair, not being able to get a drink from the fridge, showering only when it was absolutely necessary and dreading that thought. I’ve come so far and now I’m going further. I’ve had some recent and confusing developments in terms of some new vitality – two things happened and I don’t know which one of them is the reason for my newfound vigor.

Two weeks ago, I stopped for coffee at the local gas station. You know the coffee (sucks) and you know the kind of cup (paper with the ridiculously stupid paper sleeve), as I tried to get out of my car, I grabbed the coffee cup from near the top – too freaking HOT! and while trying to adjust the cup in my hand, I promptly spilled the steaming hot coffee all over my left hand. It turned out to be a 2nd degree burn – nasty white seared skin that blistered horribley and hurt like a screaming mimi for more than a week. Strangely, on this same day, I developed a UTI (urinary tract infection) – I get these fairly frequently, probably due to an overgrowth of candida, but who knows. Anyway, I take D-Mannose to cure these when I get them – it works pretty well, I just drink 1/2 teaspoon in water about every four hours. (word to the wise here, if you’re experiencing a UTI with fever, chills, outrageous frequency, urgency and pain – quit messing around and get yourself to the doctor today!)

d-mannoseD-Mannose is a common treatment for those seeking a non-antibiotic answer for urinary symptoms of frequency, urgency, minor pain. D-Mannose is a natural sugar that your body produces and it can be purchased at your healthfood store in powder or gel-pill form (it’s cheaper online though). Related article on D-Mannose: http://www.tahoma-clinic.com/mannose.shtml

So all that week, I was supplementing with d-mannose and at the same time nursing my nasty burn. By Friday of that week, I had huge huge huge energy! Me! I went swimming at two different public pools (if you’ve had cfs at all, you know ding dang well that even wriggling into your suit is out of the question, let alone swimming some laps, let alone all the showering!) By the following monday, I was at the local track, *Running* UP the aluminum stadium steps over & over again – I probably ran up these steps 8 times & back down again – my big fat heart raging, heavy breathing and me sitting on the top after each course, smiling like a little ninny 🙂

So which of those two happenings was the one that increased my energy by such proportions? It’s well known that your body goes into overdrive when you experience a severe burn – waking up all kinds of cellular activity. Or, is it some currently unknown property of the D-Mannose ? I dunno! But the D-mannose is cheap enough for me to continue that regimine – $15 for about 10 days worth. So I’m gonna continue that treatment before I whip out my curling iron and smack my upper arm with another nasty sear on my flesh. I’ll let ya know how it goes…

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Chronic Fatigue versus Christmas: I’m Dreaming, I know…

December 12, 2008

christmaswindowA heartwarming fire in the fireplace, even a fake one would do. The scent of fresh pine boughs conjuring up memories of Christmas Past, coupled with the blossoms of sugar cookies in the oven that I’ll soon fashion with sparkling sugar flakes. Sharing a cup of Christmas Cheer while gazing at a brightly glowing tree all ashimmer with tinsel and colored lights. It’s a wonderful dream, these tangible elements of a romantic Yuletide, and one that most of my friends and family are able to create. But Chronic Fatigue and Christmas don’t mix and for me at least, even to admit that to my family and friends, is wholly embarrassing.

There’s no decorating: I’d love to bring my house into the land of the living with vibrant displays of ornaments, garlands and snowy character scenes. But I’m not even capable of bringing down the Christmas box from the top shelf in the closet. Then to imagine creating bits of flair around my livingroom sounds like it’s beyond anyone’s energy reserves. Nor can I imagine myself decorating a pretty tree (how would that get into my house?). That activity represents a long term standing session coupled with daunting strains of bending, reaching, squirming. I suppose I could manifest the energy, but for me as always, there is an energy cost analysis of where to best spend my daily outlay.

Does my family understand? No, I’m sure they think that I’m lazy, or lack Christmas Spirit, or that I’m too self absorbed. I’m so fortunate that my husband doesn’t care and doesn’t even mention it. Then too, I can well imagine that this is a source of difficulty for families everywhere, in houses where the would-be decorator suffers from CFS.

There’s no Shopping: I imagine wrangling with coats, mittens and then mangling through slippery traffic in the winter wonderland. Bustling then through parking lots, shops, and cashier queues to gleefully find the perfect representation of my love to offer. This too is a complete impossibility. If I love you truly, you’re all getting the same imported cookies that are the one undiscovered secret of my local grocery. I’m so happy to be able to simply visit my grocer and manage that task without contemplating a mobile grocery cart. If I love you more than truly, I’ll be able to burn a CD of my favorite music for you, because here at my computer, I can sit and create with ease. If I hadn’t lost my job, I would certainly take advantage of shopping online. But as everyone can acknowledge, lately this is much too weighty on the pocketbook.

There’s no wrapping: To any normal person, doesn’t this sound like the most simple of tasks? For the CFS person, this little ditty can become a rigorous onslaught of terror. Where do the pretty papers, ribbons and bows come from? Where on earth did those sticker gift tags run off to? I suppose it can be managed, but when combined with the other stresses of the season and the dedication of time and attention to the matter, this task represents yet another CFS hill to climb. If I put a sticky bow on your untagged box of cookies, will you love me just the same?

Feast without Expectation: I will do my very best to create the perfect Christmas Dinner. Fortunately in my house that allows for a roast chicken rather than turkey. My energy does afford the ability to stock the household with festive feastings and I’m quite able to manage cooking a lovely glazed spread of delights. But for many I know, this too is another holiday expression of love that falls to the wayside. At the very least, this is one area where local restaurants or caterers can assist those that are still struggling.

Dreaming of a Splendid White Christmas: As one given to outrageous fantasy, I dream of days of shooshing on the ski slopes of Telluride and then exchanging romantic gifts with hubby in our suite during our fabulous red-cheeked Colorado Christmas. Or I still envision sculpting christmas bears and bunnies on our front lawn and stringing them up with lights for nighttime neighborhood display. My mind still yearns to be dressed to the hilt in red velvet or satin and share drinks and flirtations at hubby’s company christmas party. All in a dream, my friend.

The Spirit of Christmas Still Lives: Your chronic fatigued spouse, mom or dad, family or friend still loves you just the same. Even if we fail to meet your holiday expectations, even if we fail miserably in expressing our love and heartfelt Christmas greetings, even if we’re entirely incapable of sharing in the fun, please know that we want to show our love and we’re all trying the very best that we can.


Visit my latest toy pages: Ice Age 3 Dawn of the Dinosaurs , Terminator Salvation Toys and Transformers Revenge of the Fallen Toys

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Cooking for Health: Mexicali Stand-off Chicken Tortilla Soup

June 25, 2008

Sometimes soup is just the right thing. Oh I know it’s the middle of the summer for youse people out there in bloggyland, but that ain’t gonna stop me from steamin’ my house up with the sweet aroma of chili spice. I’m always affected by the weather, in particular high pressure systems (sunny days not me, I love the rain!)…. So here’s my answer to the seeming Evangelista Torricelli barometric shape of my olefactory caverns and their resulting difficulties (I chose to speak cryptically here so I don’t gross people out.) Anyway, hot and spicy soup is the answer for today, good for what ails ya!

I’m just not good at following recipes… so I always end up making my own:

Lightning Fast Mexical Stand-Off Tortilla Soup (This recipe makes one liquid ton, well capable of serving 6-8, or my husband for just one meal.)

2lbs Chicken tenders
1 Vidalia Onion diced or any onion ya got!
1tbsp olive or cooking oil
1 can diced tomatoes with green chilies – mild or hot
1 can diced tomatoes
1 cup frozen corn
(2) 32 oz. Chicken stock or Chicken Broth (College Inn is the best tasting)
1 7oz can chopped green chilies
juice of one lime
1 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp cumen
1/2 cup seriously smashed corn tortilla chips
salt and pepper to taste
hot sauce to taste
corn tortilla chips to add at the table

Roast up the chicken tenders by sauteing in a frying pan with the onions and the oil. Try to get a nice browning on them. Then add the chopped green chilies and let that groove for a couple of minutes. At this point, you should be able to chop up the chicken tenders with a pancake turner or other firm spatula or spoon. (I love it when you don’t have to put the meat back on the cutting board to chop it up!)   I actually did the sauteing in my giant non-stick soup pan, so I could gather up all that browning goodness.  Want to use a frying pan and then transfer to your soup pot?  Just wrestle out the tasty chicken brownings with your can of diced tomatoes for a minute on a fairly high heat.

Add chili powder and cumin, stir. Add chicken stock/broth, lime juice, the two cans of tomatoes, frozen corn, and smashed tortilla chips. Bring to heat. Now’s the time to taste your creation. If your soup isn’t deep enough in flavor, add 1 tsp of catsup and 1/2 tsp of worcestor sauce. If your soup is too acidic, add just a touch of sugar – 1/2 tsp. I added catsup and that balanced out the acidity immediately. Simmer this gorgeous soup for an hour or so to meld the goodness into paradise on wheels. Serve with more crispy tortilla chips on the table – I’m gonna smash mine right into the soup for a crispy crunchy heat-seeking groove.

Traditional renditions of this soup include hand-fried corn tortilla strips (who’s got time for that?). This soup is also traditionally served with sour cream or shredded cheese garnish. Yum!

This spicey rendition of a classic soup is good for your health. The capsaicin in the chilies and chili powder releases endorphins, the steamy hot soup will cure my pressure head, and capsaicin has been proven to help Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, CFS, sufferers both topically in creams and by adding a boost to your metabolism when ingested. Related article: Hot Peppers Add Zing (sorry about the stupid pop-up!)


Visit my latest toy pages: Ice Age 3 Dawn of the Dinosaurs , Terminator Salvation Toys and Transformers Revenge of the Fallen Toys

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Still Feeling Froggy – Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, CFIDS

June 20, 2008

In my continual wonderment at how much my Chronic Fatigue Syndrome has improved, I’m also just as perplexed at my own ever-present toxicity. I still feel foggy, which I call froggy (cuz I’m insane) and I know it’s because I’m no where near healthy. The pursuit of health seems so complicated by so many factors and yet at the same time, the answer seems universal to nearly any health issue.

My complications include: sugar addiction, wavering hormonal flux, reliance on caffeine, the energy that’s required to create natural well-balanced meals on a daily basis.

The Universal Health Answer: Have ya ever noticed that the natural response to nearly any health difficulty on earth is the same? The Dr. Dean Ornish Heart Health Diet, Cancer Recovery Diet, Detox Diet, Chronic Fatigue Diet, Losing Weight Diet, Yeast Ridding Candida Diet, Athletic Diet – Simplified: Eat mostly fresh veggies – both raw and cooked, and some fruit. Brilliant!

Gee that sounds so easy – Why is it so difficult? I know from my own experience that sugar is one serious evil-doer, complicating my blood sugar levels, hampering my efforts through continual cravings and overwhelming any rationale to eat my veggies. Supposing I’ve gone off sugar for three days to overcome that monkey on my back, I still become weighted down by an inexhaustible yearning for starchy carbs. I think that’s just my blood sugar screaming out for more, more, more. Wouldn’t it be great if I could tell my blood sugar to just shut up already?

The Pursuit of Happiness: My goals never change – I’d like to be able to work, play, and think like a normal human being! To quote Scripture for a second here: “As a man thinks, So Is He” – This is the first key to success: Point your mind in the right direction, and your body will follow. In order to achieve my goals of feeling better, acting like a normal person, I need to focus my thoughts on the detox veggie diet and stop revelling in fantasies about chocolate cake and brownies.

In this vain, it’s always most helpful for me to view sugary and starchy foods as “poisons” to my goal, and the veggies as “cleansers”. It’s not too extreme to call the cakes & candies poison – they’re literally robbing me, and have robbed me of my life for 17 years. So sad to even consider the complete effect of sugar addiction in one glance like that. I’ve also proven to myself that the cleansing effect of the natural vegetable diet is dramatic and enervating. And it’s always my thoughts that create the motivations to change or languish, resulting in good or bad behavior. I feel like Winnie the Pooh: “Think, Think, Think”….

Mitochondrial and Other Supplements: Imagining that I’ve managed to maintain a clean veggie oriented diet and that my blood sugar levels aren’t making me a slave to their whims, I know that nutritional supplementation is essential to create my health. I feel like I owe all of my CFS improvement to NT Factor – Lipid Replacement Therapy. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Research has shown damage to the Mitochondrial Function of the cell, the area responsible for fueling energy in the body. While the phosphoglycolipids in NT Factor don’t repair the mitochondria directly, they do provide the pre-cursors for ATP production. This same treatment protocol has been adopted for fatigue among cancer patients as well with amazing results. D-Ribose helps with the fibromyalgia pain of daily living too, and although this has never been my primary complaint, I know it’s a major factor in many CFIDS sufferers.

Continual Health Resolve: Here I am again, still pressing on toward winning this life long battle. “Keep going Carrie, You Can Make It! – Think These Thoughts!”

1. Stay away from Sugar and Starch. They’re the nasty creeps causing your downfall!
2. Eat 5 Mighty cups of Veggies per day. (Other people can eat fruit too, I can’t – blood sugar.)
3. Maintain a constant influx of Supplements. This is where your energy is coming from, you ninny.
4. Drink 64oz. of water daily, before 8pm – I hate peeing all night.
5. Walk 3 times a week for 20 minutes – even if it kills ya.
6. Control Your Thought Life – stop thinking about Aunt Grace’s Brownies, think about swimming instead!
7. Go on a juice fast, gallbladder flush, or colonix cleanse again. I promise you’ll feel better if you do!

Ok, I’m done lecturing myself…. I’m striving to do better… I gotta get serious to get my total life back – I believe it’s truly possible now!


Visit my latest toy pages: Ice Age 3 Dawn of the Dinosaurs , Terminator Salvation Toys and Transformers Revenge of the Fallen Toys


Notes: Thanks to Marilyn’s Toy Pages for that amazing frog cut out picture. Also, “feeling froggy” in the urban dictionary actually refers to feeling lively or upbeat. If you’d care to know how one lovely girl that has lost her job due to CFS earns a seriously tiny income, you’re welcome to visit my Wall-E Toys. Thanks!

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CFS: I’m Living a New Life

June 8, 2008

Quite honestly, I never thought that I could get this far. I barely even think of my chronic fatigue as a constant impediment to my daily living tasks. I am highly aware that my activities have to be limited or there will indeed be hell to pay, but on the other hand, my mind is no longer constrained by the constant fear of collapsing someplace or completely running out of steam when doing a specific task.

Earlier in my bloggyland I had mentioned my upcoming trip to Florida – It’s in the past now and I had such a great great time with my family. I went swimming every day! ME!!! (Good Lord, if you people knew me before, in the midst of my mollasses-ness (mollasiocity, mollastication?) you’d know how unbelievable that is…)

One of my big turning points was re-reading the label on the NT Factor – it now states: “For Severe Fatigue, increase to 9 tablets per day”… and I did – ANYTHING to feel mo’ better… This stuff totally works… I want to reiterate again, I’m not cured… I couldn’t work an 8 hour day for the life of me – if you suffer from CFS, you know well that getting up, showered, dressed is half of that battle… but lately, I’m thinking I could indeed work 20 hours per week. Yes, I really just said that… 

Anyway, NT Factor is a dietary supplement cooked up by clinical researchers in their quest to determine just what is causing Chronic Fatique Syndrome – aside from initial indications that it’s caused by a virus (epstein-barr, etc.).   NT Factor is a blend of probiotics and phosphoglypolipids that move into the cell wall and boost the mitochondrial function of creating ATP for your body.  That’s pretty heavy talk for some – translation:  for CFS sufferers, your cells are actually damaged – yup every ding dang one of them!  This is a supplement that supports energy production – getting your cells back to functioning and creating energy the way that they’re supposed to. 

So lately, I take 9 pills, and I’m still kinda flakey and dont’ take them every day.  One of my most serious limitations is that I still can’t handle stress or strong emotions.  Recently, a very very dear friend of mine passed away, and even though I could have gotten dressed and physically attended his services, the emotional strain of the circumstances left me completely weak.  I simply was unable to interact socially.  Emotions can be unbearable for me, still causing me to need to lay down.  I still have difficulty on the phone too.

But, on the good side: I walk now without thinking of sitting down… I do things… I proved my swimming longevity in Florida (I aint’ back to doin laps again, but I did wrangle, wriggle and wiggle into that suit and then freely frolic!). Yesterday I did housecleaning, including a serious scrub of da tub – my haunches hurt today, but I ain’t dead. Today I worked on my Kung Fu Panda Toys page, cleaned the kitchen (lordy what a mess!), then went to a movie with my brother, then went shopping for photo frames for my other brother’s handsome pic – that’s him up there – the reason for the Florida trip, Then I went to the grocery store, and I’m just now about to take a shower. 

My increased energy, sense of well being has decreased my bloggyrhythms (blog posts for the uninitiate), and also unfortunately has decreased my maniacal attention to my diet – now I feel better enough not to have to worry about every single morsel placed in my little mouth. I know I could even be better still, with greater adherence to my mostly veggie diet protocol.  It’s just that NT Factor totally totally works.  No Jokes.


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CFS: My New Fear

April 10, 2008

I’m in the midst of my carefully devised plan to overcome Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  I’ve changed my diet, found amazingly effective supplements in the form of NT Factor and D-Ribose, and I’ve garnered some success.  But a new fear is overtaking me lately.  The clinical studies involved with these ‘new found’ supplements reflect only a 40-45% improvement of CFS symptoms.  And this is where I am right now.  Does this mean that where I am is as good as it’s going to get?   Have I reached the pinnacle of improvement?

I no longer pour myself into the couch after walking just a few steps into the livingroom,  I can walk and do some normal life endeavors or attend an event without the need to collapse, but is this all there is?   I don’t know the answer….  I have to keep working, keep detoxing, keep hoping, keep praying…


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