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Good Resources for Chinese Medicine


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#1 Luminosity

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Posted 10 August 2011 - 04:42 AM


I"d recommend a book called Asian Health Secrets by Letha Haddady. It's been a very useful book for me. I can't say I agree with every single thing it says. I don't think that vegetarian cleansing diets are the way to go (and I tried them), but she has a lot of wisdom. The writing is more accessible than many books on the subject.

As far as medicines go, Plum Flower brand is a good brand. They make a Loquat or Fritillary cough syrup that is good. There is nothing harmful or scary in there. It might be a good one to start with. You might buy it and keep it on hand in case of need.

Does acupuncture hurt? Not as much as you think. The needles are smaller than a human hair. Most points don't hurt that much. Overall, it's well worth it.

Is it safe? I've found it to be safer the Western Medicine. I would not personally let them put needles into an injured area. That has not worked for me. I would put it nearby or seek other types of treatments. All the acupuncturists I've been to now use sterile disposable needles. Feel free to inquire about it.

You probably don't have to spend a lot of time boiling up foul smelling teas. I've asked to avoid that. They have alternatives like herbals pills and liquid medicines.

How do you find a good acupuncturist? I've found that only half of them have the necessary skill or talent. This is probably because of liberal admissions policies in US acupuncture schools, which can be money-generators for the owners. You can ask around in your community. You can also go to one and see how you feel. If you do not see a distinct difference in one to three treatments, that person is probably not good. If you have a good one, you will know. There are also cultural differences. You might not want to go to a person who is too brusque or hard to talk to, if you have a good alternative. You might find it necessary to sometimes find an acupuncturist you can really communicate with, or whose office is comfortable for in terms of noise level, music, incense exposure. Not all settings work for all people. A good pracitioner will set up an environment which is not uncomfortable so the patients can absorb the treatments.

If you get an acupuncturist from China they might not require appointments. In Asia, some medical appointments are handled like haircuts at Supercuts; you just go. Be sure to ask that practioner what their policy is. I like just zipping into the doctor like it was McDonalds. It's liberating.

Edited by Luminosity, 10 August 2011 - 04:49 AM.


#2 InquilineKea

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Posted 17 August 2011 - 01:26 AM

Meh, I'd like to hear more about this.

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#3 Luminosity

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Posted 21 August 2011 - 03:02 AM

Thank you.

One of the things that most people don't know is that

ICE WATER IS BAD FOR YOU

As is eating cold food and too much raw food. Why? According to Chinese Medicine, your body has to divert vital energy from your internal organs to warm up the food, and your cold stomach. This vital energy is special, and it should be used to run your metabolism. Every time you drink a cold drink or eat cold food, you are distracting your body from its workings, leading to less radiance and vitality than you might have enjoyed. It will make you less healthy, and eventually you may not look as young as you could look. Raw and cold food is "yin" so excess of it can contribute to to "yin" diseases like chronic fatigue, and fibromyalgia. Consuming too much cold and raw foods feeds inflammatory conditions because it causes what Chinese doctors call "damp heat." They implicate "damp heat" in inflammatory diseases.

How do they know about this?

Chinese medicine is based on 5,000 years of observation handed down from generation to generation. By studying on the human body for that long and in such detail, they have figured these things out.

How do I know this is true?

You can try modifying your diet for a month and see if you look or feel better. Expect an improvement in your looks, energy, a lessening of any inflammatory conditions, less bloating and under eye bags. Over time you may notice enhanced digestion or a lessening of food allergies and sensitivities.

How could I do this?

Drink room temperature or hot drinks. Let chilled foods and drinks come to room temperature before eating them. Eat some warm, cooked foods each day, preferably with at least two meals. Try to have a hot drink and hot food as part of your breakfast especially. In Chinese medicine you are kind of sluggish in the morning and the heat will help get you going. Toast bread and warm up baked goods. Consider toasting nuts, or crackers in the oven to warm them up. If nothing else, having hot tea with a cold meal is better than nothing. In view of the heat wave, if you need a cold drink due to usual weather now and then, listen to your body. Outside of that, if you drink cold drinks all the time, it does more harm than good. It feels good at the time but it sets up inflammation and "damp heat" in the body. This actually feeds the craving for cold drinks, which seem refreshing temporarily, but have bad effects over time. After about a month, you will likely loose much of your craving for cold foods and drinks. You will probably look and feel better too. If it's real hot where you live right now, you could consider starting all this in the fall so you aren't adjusting to a new regime in the August heat.
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#4 Luminosity

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Posted 15 December 2011 - 03:15 AM

MORE ON HOW TO TELL A GOOD ACUPUNCTURIST

A really good acupuncturist/Chinese herbalist will ask many questions on your first visit. This should take some time. S/he will ask detailed questions about your bodily functions, metabolism, sleep habits, etc. If you plan to see an acupuncturist in the future you should take note of stuff like that. S/he may ask you the color and texture of your urine, feces, menstrual blood, how heavy your menstrual flow is, how long your period is, how many times a day you urinate, etc. Yeah, it's gross to talk about those things, but in asking those questions, s/he can tell exactly what is going on inside your body. It's better than having to bring that stuff in as you might have to do in a Western doctor's office. All acupuncturists will look at your tongue and take your pulses. If the practitioner you went to only asked two or three questions on the first visit, s/he isn't the best. It should take at least fifteen minutes to half an hour of questions before the treatment begins on the first visit.

Hopefully s/he will set up an appropriate environment and not say negative things. I've been to some who did otherwise. I went to one who had a red plastic sharps container overflowing with used needles. He constantly said dark and negative things even though I specifically asked him to stop that. I never went back to him. There was a celebrated acupuncturist in my area. All the smart people went to her. Her skills were the best although unfortunately she did play abrasive Chinese marching band music, burn incense twice a day, and inhabit a space with an extraordinary amount of traffic fumes. After many years of practicing, she became an alcoholic, which very few Chinese immigrant/Taoist monks do. She would come to work each day high as a kite. Her treatments lost their effect. Her waiting room became empty. She is still in practice and operates an acupuncture school. Like any other group of people, acupuncturists can have problems. Most are not alcoholics, but it could happen. Mostly the problems are a lack of sufficient skill, no rigorous diagnostic work, being unsuited to the work, being abrasive, not speaking English, poor communication skills, or setting up a contrary environment. At times you can get the help you need from someone who doesn't speak that much English. As always, when you are dealing with new-agey people, some have complicated personality problems.

You can sometimes get help from someone who doesn't ask a lot of diagnostic questions, or who isn't a great communicator. Personally I would try to find someone who is top notch but if you can't find that person there are other practitioners. If the person is a compromise, just be aware of that and don't go back to someone like the guy with the overflowing sharps container, or the alcoholic monk.

Edited by Luminosity, 15 December 2011 - 04:40 AM.

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#5 idquest

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Posted 15 December 2011 - 11:43 PM

MORE ON HOW TO TELL A GOOD ACUPUNCTURIST

I treated my inflamed hip with an acupuncturist this spring. At the beginning of each session she would listen to my pulse for about a minute or two. After a couple of weeks she started to ask me how my digestion was, did I have any problems or not. I was a bit surprised by her seemingly irrelevant (as I thought) interest until H Pylori hit me in May. Just by taking my pulse she knew something is wrong with my digestion. So I asked her how the pulse taking works, and she replied that usually acupuncturists are good at determining of coming problems. Taking a pulse to the fullest can take up to 45 minutes so they usually listen to the different areas of the body each time/session so that each session would have about 1-3 minutes of pulse taking. This whole thing was quite interesting.

#6 Luminosity

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Posted 18 December 2011 - 04:24 AM

Was it the hip joint? What was the diagnosis? What was the extent of the problem? How did it work out?

#7 idquest

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Posted 18 December 2011 - 07:17 PM

Was it the hip joint? What was the diagnosis? What was the extent of the problem? How did it work out?

Well my hip problem was quite educational for me. First I exposed my hip to cold during my sleep and got some inflammation. It is impossible to say what was inflamed, muscles, tendons, bone surface - nobody knows. Likely, that were muscles.

After the inflammation didnt' go by itself I went to a walk-in clinic (I don't have a family doctor as it is virtually impossible to get one in Canada). A doctor sent me for x-rays and prescribed diclofenac. Diclofenac made some relief to the inflammation but it still remained running. What diclofenac did though, it triggered H Pylori outbreak and I became seriously ill. Treating H Pylori with antibiotics triggered C Diff outbreak I'm still dealing with with little success.

The acupuncturist didn't say much, she just did the job, a number of one-hour sessions working with me only during the sessions. Highly proffessionally I must say, you know that when they insert needles into the right points, your body lets you know the points are right. She was the first one in my 50-ish years life who said my problems I have stem from the bad posture, and if I don't work on my posture my problems are going to be worse. When I asked her about my stomach problem that became apparent by that time she mentioned something about excess fire (acupuncturist jargon) which can be translated to inflammation process triggered by H Pilory easily. Overall, I was imressed with her proffessionalism and ability to diagnose and deal with the muscle problems. I didn't try to treat the H Pylori with the acupuncturist (could have been wrong with that) because I figured the bug had to be treated with antibiotics. Now I have C dif.

Another thing I liked about her treatment was a special far-infrared lamp, TDP lamp. They are pretty expensive, as I have checked afterwards, but they look like doing good job on warming up deep layers under the skin.

#8 Luminosity

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Posted 21 December 2011 - 11:22 PM

Thanks. I have invented a warming cream that might be helpful:

http://www.longecity...tion-that-works

Edited by Luminosity, 21 December 2011 - 11:24 PM.


#9 scottknl

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Posted 03 June 2012 - 03:57 AM

I consume substantial amounts of Chinese herbs, so I wanted to know what the nutritional profile of each herb is. While searching I ran across this link that has analysis profiles for many herbs. I thought it might come in useful for some.
In order to look up a herb, you'll find them listed by their latin names. eg. huang qi is listed as Astragalus_Membranicus.txt.
Cheers.

http://www.swsbm.com/Constituents/

Edit: I thought I'd just add that a pet theory of mine is that much of the effects of some Chinese herbal prescriptions can be attributed to the nutritional content of the herbs and teas. The theory suggests that drinking tea made from specific roots will produce a balance of trace minerals that helps the patient. As they say "Let food be thy medicine and medicine thy food!".

Edited by scottknl, 03 June 2012 - 04:02 AM.

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#10 Luminosity

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Posted 04 June 2012 - 03:08 AM

Thanks for adding that resource.

#11 Luminosity

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 05:07 AM

Here's some intelligent posts by Clarity about Chinese medicine. I copied them from another thread.

I agree with most of what she has said except that, as I said earlier, I would not have needles put into an injured area, or inflamed hip joints, based on my experience. I really regretted that. That seems to be a common treatment, though:


Posted 10 January 2013 - 07:45 PM


I've used chinese formulas alot with all kinds of funky ingredients, on my own & through acupuncturists. The only brand I trust 100% is Mayway products - Min Shan & Plum Flower brands. They test every batch for impurities & heavy metals. I once had an acupuncturist try to sell me a counterfeit lookalike so I'm very adept at spotting counterfeits. I've bought from Chineseherbsdirect.com, morningstarhealth.com and acuatlanta.net among others. There's such a large variance in prices for the same products too. They also can be found on amazon...just have to be careful you're not getting a counterfeit brand. Pretty easy to spot based on the labeling (they're not very good at it). You can go to mayway.com to see what their product labels look like.


-- Clarity . . . . . .


Posted 11 January 2013


Quote


I'm convinced of the health benefits of Chinese food, but not sure about the medicine (at least not all of it). What do you expect to receive as a result of acu treatments and funky ingredients?


From my experiences, I have found that herbs work much faster than actual needling. But there have been scenarios that herbs weren't appropriate (i.e. a herniated disc & back problems) that needling worked.

A few instances where only needling worked immediately for me (she didn't do herbs): I initially went for herniated disk in lumbar/sacrum - that actually took a couple months. I had a head cold (not why I was going) and acupuncturist cleared my sinuses on the spot. I was getting chronic cysts - cyst resolved day after needling. When I left that acu for a break, she said she was sending me off with a little "somethin', somethin'". I found out the next day what that was - a crazy libido that lasted an entire month. I think I'm going back to her...soon. : p

Instances where herbs worked: After trying to get pregnant for 10 years, I did acupuncture for 3 mos, then continued herbs for a few weeks. I got pregnant (but it didn't last after stopping herbs). I had pretty bad adrenal fatigue at the time after coming off of steroids & fertility drugs (they probably did a number on my liver) - I had much improved within those 3 mos (I backslid years later). More recently I had crazy hives and intense sweating after a spider bite. A different acu gave me strong purging herbs and the reaction stopped within a couple of days. The sweating had been pre-existing somewhat and hasn't returned.

The first time I had acupunture needling done, it wasn't exactly a good experience the first 2 months. It brought back some prior joint pain & night sweats, & I think her technique was off, because I never had that experience again. She was a bit of a Kamikaze when it came to the amount of needles. For some people less is more at the beginning.


I utilize chinese medicine because there have been too many health problems that regular doctors haven't been able to offer me a solution, and I find that I have much less side effects with chinese formulas then I do with regular herbs & supplements.


-- Clarity . . . . .


I utilize chinese medicine because there have been too many health problems that regular doctors haven't been able to offer me a solution, and I find that I have much less side effects with chinese formulas then I do with regular herbs & supplements.


-- Clarity . . . . .

. . . .


Edited by Luminosity, 13 January 2013 - 05:30 AM.


#12 Clarity

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 02:36 PM

Idquest - Interesting that you had hip inflammation after h-pylori. Me too. Except it was more of a sciatica running down my right hip. I had it for over a year and it was pretty resistant to going away. In fact, I have alot of right side problems - a western dr. would never understand that one. The acu I was going to for my back practiced 5 element, so I had a very hard time understanding that vs. traditional acupuncture. I'm going back to her in a month or so, because that sciatica is coming back. And interestingly I've had digestive problems lately. Have you tried Florastor for C. Diffic.? It's one of the probiotic strains meant for that. You can get it at many drugstores. I was taking it during H. Pylori treatment because those antibiotics were killer. And I mean I literally wanted to die while on them.

Luminosity - The acupuncturist didn't actually needle my spine or hip at all. She needled other areas. : )

I never drink cold drinks (except for the occasional one in the summer). For some reason that one really stuck with me.

#13 Clarity

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 02:58 PM

Edit: I thought I'd just add that a pet theory of mine is that much of the effects of some Chinese herbal prescriptions can be attributed to the nutritional content of the herbs and teas. The theory suggests that drinking tea made from specific roots will produce a balance of trace minerals that helps the patient. As they say "Let food be thy medicine and medicine thy food!".


If you've ever taken a custom raw herb purging formula that you have to cook, or herbs that cool or warm you, you'd probably feel it's much, much more than that. Trust me!

#14 scottknl

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 07:01 PM

Edit: I thought I'd just add that a pet theory of mine is that much of the effects of some Chinese herbal prescriptions can be attributed to the nutritional content of the herbs and teas. The theory suggests that drinking tea made from specific roots will produce a balance of trace minerals that helps the patient. As they say "Let food be thy medicine and medicine thy food!".


If you've ever taken a custom raw herb purging formula that you have to cook, or herbs that cool or warm you, you'd probably feel it's much, much more than that. Trust me!

Heh he. I have cooked herbs to warm my organs, and while I know the feeling you're talking about, I have no theory that people steeped in both eastern and western medicine can agree on for some of the affects.

When you're deficient in a nutrient and then supply that nutrient, the results do appear very quickly, so that's the one part that stands out as something both sides can agree on.

Clarity, with respect to your sciatic nerve problems, you might take a close look at your diet and see if you have too much inflammatory foods or a deficiency of foods that are anti-inflammatory in nature. Perhaps reducing breads and grains (often high in inflammatory Omega-6) and increasing items higher in Omega-3 (ground flaxseed, flaxseed oil and to a lesser extent Olive oil). If you still need more fats, then try avocado for some monounsaturated fats that are neither inflammatory nor anti-inflammatory. Sometimes the balance just needs a little nudge in the right direction.

#15 Luminosity

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 07:20 AM

Clarity, thanks for the clarification. ;-) I'm glad your doctor didn't do that. There are some that do.

Sorry about the sciatica. Thought I'd mention some things although you might already be ahead of me. I hope you have nice soft pillows to sit on and can lie down as much as possible. For some people, cutting down on caffiene, tea, coffee, chocolate, sodas, acids and acid forming foods might help. Swimming might help. I believe the Chinese medicine does address this. Asian Health Secrets by Letha Haddady mentions a case history that she treated. I hope your acupuncturist's appointment goes well.

Edited by Luminosity, 14 January 2013 - 07:21 AM.

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#16 Clarity

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 03:39 PM

Heh he. I have cooked herbs to warm my organs, and while I know the feeling you're talking about, I have no theory that people steeped in both eastern and western medicine can agree on for some of the affects.

When you're deficient in a nutrient and then supply that nutrient, the results do appear very quickly, so that's the one part that stands out as something both sides can agree on.

Clarity, with respect to your sciatic nerve problems, you might take a close look at your diet and see if you have too much inflammatory foods or a deficiency of foods that are anti-inflammatory in nature. Perhaps reducing breads and grains (often high in inflammatory Omega-6) and increasing items higher in Omega-3 (ground flaxseed, flaxseed oil and to a lesser extent Olive oil). If you still need more fats, then try avocado for some monounsaturated fats that are neither inflammatory nor anti-inflammatory. Sometimes the balance just needs a little nudge in the right direction.


Right now I'm on a whole foods diet, but I found by day 2 I needed some refined carbs - because my back problems really started kicking back in (it's an adrenal thing). There's this very thin line for me between too many carbs and too little...I try though. I use chia seed daily, sometimes flaxseed. I cannot use fish oils or even algae based omega 3 supplements. It causes inflammation for me. I can tolerate small amounts of seafood, but too much gives me joint pain. I already did the rounds here trying to figure that one out. I did do some allergy testing and I had an inflammatory response to shellfish. Chia seed will have to suffice. Olive oil has a strong benefit with my blood sugar issues, so I use it daily too.

The back problems in particular - I find taking mucinex helps ALOT - when I remember to take it. And chinese herbs for cold damp/phlegm...no coincidence there. The strange thing is if I take either for more than 3 days in a row, my mind starts to race. I have to take it every other day.

Edited by Clarity, 15 January 2013 - 03:40 PM.


#17 Clarity

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 03:51 PM

Clarity, thanks for the clarification. ;-) I'm glad your doctor didn't do that. There are some that do.

Sorry about the sciatica. Thought I'd mention some things although you might already be ahead of me. I hope you have nice soft pillows to sit on and can lie down as much as possible. For some people, cutting down on caffiene, tea, coffee, chocolate, sodas, acids and acid forming foods might help. Swimming might help. I believe the Chinese medicine does address this. Asian Health Secrets by Letha Haddady mentions a case history that she treated. I hope your acupuncturist's appointment goes well.


I can't live without coffee but I drink decaf (I'm thinking this is bad too). I have a cup of green tea a day which has an anti-inflammatory effect for me. Soda...I have tried to cut out diet soda. It makes me tired and depressed when I do (I don't know why). I don't drink caffeinated soda so it's not the caffeine. And I agree with the swimming. I used to have a pool, back when I had a herniated neck disc & whiplash. Swimming was huge in my recovery. Right now we're looking for a house with a pool. Incidentally, I have the mild form of spina bifida, which I didn't find out till a few years ago. I think that makes me more prone to back problems.

#18 Luminosity

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Posted 16 January 2013 - 05:40 AM

I can't live without coffee but I drink decaf (I'm thinking this is bad too). I have a cup of green tea a day which has an anti-inflammatory effect for me. Soda...I have tried to cut out diet soda. It makes me tired and depressed when I do (I don't know why). I don't drink caffeinated soda so it's not the caffeine. And I agree with the swimming. I used to have a pool, back when I had a herniated neck disc & whiplash. Swimming was huge in my recovery. Right now we're looking for a house with a pool. Incidentally, I have the mild form of spina bifida, which I didn't find out till a few years ago. I think that makes me more prone to back problems.


Thanks for responding. I see some possible triggers for the sciatica. I hope it isn't obnoxious to offer further opinions.

Decaf coffee contains acids and some caffeine. There's an herbal coffee substitute called Teechino. It tastes just like coffee. Personally I like the Java flavor best. I mail order it from Vitacost, although WholeFoods may have it for double the price. It has no acids, which is better. The phosphoric and citric acids in diet soda are likely fueling this problem. They will break down nerve sheaths and disks. Artificial sweetener does too. It even causes MS for some people. I'm sure your acupuncturist can help with the diet soda habit. You are probably just feeding the damp heat. If you try real hard to be healthy, like drinking hot herb tea all day and eating a steamed green vegetable every day, it might help. If you have access to fresh aloe vera gel, it might help. Take it on an empty stomach. Only consume the inner leaf gel as the yellowish area under the peel has a laxative effect. I think you just have too many yin influences, from the American diet and lifestyle.

Here's a healthy mocha recipe. Taking even unsweetened chocolate all the time could make your problem worse though.

http://www.longecity...y-mocha-recipe/

You can also add carob powder to warm almond milk.

I drink Green Roobois tea and Honeybush tea by Numi because they both have no acids or caffeine. Vitacost has them too. Swanson's might as well.

All of your problems may have a thinning of certain tissues as a factor. Your stomach lining may be thinner and more porous than normal. The same may be true of other mucous membranes, the lining of the lungs, nerve sheathes, etc.

Why? Too much acid in our diets and also produced in our own bodies by stress. Also the modern food supply is not what it used to be.

Taking certain supplements may help. MSM is the most likely to help. It is the building block of many tissues in the body and our food supply is deficient in it. I would take Source Naturals MSM plain powder, but any plain powder MSM is o.k. as long as they use OptiMSM as their source. Source Naturals is a finer powder and more dissolvable in water. I take two teaspoons twice a day (four total) on an empty stomach along with a small dose of vitamin C. I don't absorb MSM well in non-liquid forms. You could start with a half a teaspoon at a time.

Collagen is another supplement that might help you. Personally, I take Swanson's Type II Chicken Sternal Collagen. I have tried all the type II supplements and this is the best. I take six capsules twice a day (twelve a day) dissolved in water, on an empty stomach along with a small amount of vitamin C. Some people take Bovine or Porcine types I and III collagen, basically gelatin. Some take hydrolyzed, some take unhydrolyzed. Great Lakes is a popular brand. It is pure and fresh. Types I and III gelatin make my skin break out. My body can't break it down. Type II is better for joints and connective tissue anyway.

I also take Cola de Caballo by Amazon Therapeutics. It is a good source of organic silica, another building block for our bodies that is deficient in our modern diet. I get it from Vitacost.com.

Just as important as what you put into your body is keeping the excess acids and junk food out. It can wash out these and other expensive nutrients. What all your problems have in common may be thinning, porous tissues that allow stuff to leak from your digestive system into your blood stream, for instance.

Edited by Luminosity, 16 January 2013 - 06:02 AM.


#19 Raptor87

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 04:32 AM

Any remedies for anxiety/OCD or stress?

#20 idquest

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Posted 02 February 2013 - 10:54 PM

Idquest - Interesting that you had hip inflammation after h-pylori. Me too. Except it was more of a sciatica running down my right hip. I had it for over a year and it was pretty resistant to going away. In fact, I have alot of right side problems - a western dr. would never understand that one. The acu I was going to for my back practiced 5 element, so I had a very hard time understanding that vs. traditional acupuncture. I'm going back to her in a month or so, because that sciatica is coming back. And interestingly I've had digestive problems lately. Have you tried Florastor for C. Diffic.? It's one of the probiotic strains meant for that. You can get it at many drugstores. I was taking it during H. Pylori treatment because those antibiotics were killer. And I mean I literally wanted to die while on them.

I agree the antibiotics were killers. The C Dif outbreak resulting from the antibiotics was a pretty nasty one. I also must say that all my digestion problems had huge impact on my joints and muscles. Apparently I've developed some sensitivities for certain foods that now cause inflammation. Still working on it.

With regards to back problems, I can recommend this course:
http://foundationtraining.com/home/
The idea is simple: to increase the distance between the vertebrae, to train the peovic area, and to improve alignments legs-pelvic-spine. TO do that, you'll need two things. First - well trained muscles in both posterior and anterior spine. Second - really good relaxation techniques. Why you need relaxation techniques - because you won't be able to straighten the spine and increase the inter-disk space only with stretching and strong muscles. You can ultimately do this only by relaxing the surrounding muslces. The course above will train the muscles, and for the relaxation there are a lot of different courses. I use the one Bruce Frantzis teaches.

Edit: In a lame excuse to keep this post in line of the topic theme, I can say that B. Frantzis's main teachings are daoist ones, of Chinese origin.

Edited by idquest, 02 February 2013 - 10:59 PM.


#21 Clarity

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 05:48 PM

I can't live without coffee but I drink decaf (I'm thinking this is bad too). I have a cup of green tea a day which has an anti-inflammatory effect for me. Soda...I have tried to cut out diet soda. It makes me tired and depressed when I do (I don't know why). I don't drink caffeinated soda so it's not the caffeine. And I agree with the swimming. I used to have a pool, back when I had a herniated neck disc & whiplash. Swimming was huge in my recovery. Right now we're looking for a house with a pool. Incidentally, I have the mild form of spina bifida, which I didn't find out till a few years ago. I think that makes me more prone to back problems.


Thanks for responding. I see some possible triggers for the sciatica. I hope it isn't obnoxious to offer further opinions.

Decaf coffee contains acids and some caffeine. There's an herbal coffee substitute called Teechino. It tastes just like coffee. Personally I like the Java flavor best. I mail order it from Vitacost, although WholeFoods may have it for double the price. It has no acids, which is better. The phosphoric and citric acids in diet soda are likely fueling this problem. They will break down nerve sheaths and disks. Artificial sweetener does too. It even causes MS for some people. I'm sure your acupuncturist can help with the diet soda habit. You are probably just feeding the damp heat. If you try real hard to be healthy, like drinking hot herb tea all day and eating a steamed green vegetable every day, it might help. If you have access to fresh aloe vera gel, it might help. Take it on an empty stomach. Only consume the inner leaf gel as the yellowish area under the peel has a laxative effect. I think you just have too many yin influences, from the American diet and lifestyle.

Here's a healthy mocha recipe. Taking even unsweetened chocolate all the time could make your problem worse though.

http://www.longecity...y-mocha-recipe/

You can also add carob powder to warm almond milk.

I drink Green Roobois tea and Honeybush tea by Numi because they both have no acids or caffeine. Vitacost has them too. Swanson's might as well.

All of your problems may have a thinning of certain tissues as a factor. Your stomach lining may be thinner and more porous than normal. The same may be true of other mucous membranes, the lining of the lungs, nerve sheathes, etc.

Why? Too much acid in our diets and also produced in our own bodies by stress. Also the modern food supply is not what it used to be.

Taking certain supplements may help. MSM is the most likely to help. It is the building block of many tissues in the body and our food supply is deficient in it. I would take Source Naturals MSM plain powder, but any plain powder MSM is o.k. as long as they use OptiMSM as their source. Source Naturals is a finer powder and more dissolvable in water. I take two teaspoons twice a day (four total) on an empty stomach along with a small dose of vitamin C. I don't absorb MSM well in non-liquid forms. You could start with a half a teaspoon at a time.

Collagen is another supplement that might help you. Personally, I take Swanson's Type II Chicken Sternal Collagen. I have tried all the type II supplements and this is the best. I take six capsules twice a day (twelve a day) dissolved in water, on an empty stomach along with a small amount of vitamin C. Some people take Bovine or Porcine types I and III collagen, basically gelatin. Some take hydrolyzed, some take unhydrolyzed. Great Lakes is a popular brand. It is pure and fresh. Types I and III gelatin make my skin break out. My body can't break it down. Type II is better for joints and connective tissue anyway.

I also take Cola de Caballo by Amazon Therapeutics. It is a good source of organic silica, another building block for our bodies that is deficient in our modern diet. I get it from Vitacost.com.

Just as important as what you put into your body is keeping the excess acids and junk food out. It can wash out these and other expensive nutrients. What all your problems have in common may be thinning, porous tissues that allow stuff to leak from your digestive system into your blood stream, for instance.


Sorry it took so long to respond! Thanks for all the recommendations (no I didn't think it was obnoxious). Ironically I'm having more digestive problems of late - seems to be triggered by some new probiotics. And of course, my back is bothering me more. But I had been thinking about using knox gelatin for the collagen - I get a little nervous about collagen supplements ever since doing bovine colostrum and having it end up in disaster. I know they're different, but maybe more similar in an immune system kind of way? I once made bone broth - blech. Could not stomach. Trying to keep on top of taking whey protein.

MSM never works out for me after a few days. I start getting joint pain, and brain fog. I'll try to take it a few times a week. While I don't think I can cut out my decaf, I am going to make a real effort to cut out the diet soda. I also ordered Trace Minerals - I've heard good reviews on it, and hopefully it will help in some way. I have not drank mineralized water in decades...we had RO water as a kid (we lived near a farm), and since then filtered. I think I am probably missing valuable nutrients.

ETA: After posting this, I rethought that probably chicken collagen is probably safer than knox gelatin (beef). My only problem is if it has any glucosamine or chondroitin components to it, I can't tolerate that. I have the same problem with those that I have with MSM. In fact, I feel like I've been ran over by a truck when I take Gluc/Chondroitin.

Edited by Clarity, 04 February 2013 - 06:19 PM.


#22 Clarity

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 06:03 PM

Idquest - Interesting that you had hip inflammation after h-pylori. Me too. Except it was more of a sciatica running down my right hip. I had it for over a year and it was pretty resistant to going away. In fact, I have alot of right side problems - a western dr. would never understand that one. The acu I was going to for my back practiced 5 element, so I had a very hard time understanding that vs. traditional acupuncture. I'm going back to her in a month or so, because that sciatica is coming back. And interestingly I've had digestive problems lately. Have you tried Florastor for C. Diffic.? It's one of the probiotic strains meant for that. You can get it at many drugstores. I was taking it during H. Pylori treatment because those antibiotics were killer. And I mean I literally wanted to die while on them.

I agree the antibiotics were killers. The C Dif outbreak resulting from the antibiotics was a pretty nasty one. I also must say that all my digestion problems had huge impact on my joints and muscles. Apparently I've developed some sensitivities for certain foods that now cause inflammation. Still working on it.

With regards to back problems, I can recommend this course:
http://foundationtraining.com/home/
The idea is simple: to increase the distance between the vertebrae, to train the peovic area, and to improve alignments legs-pelvic-spine. TO do that, you'll need two things. First - well trained muscles in both posterior and anterior spine. Second - really good relaxation techniques. Why you need relaxation techniques - because you won't be able to straighten the spine and increase the inter-disk space only with stretching and strong muscles. You can ultimately do this only by relaxing the surrounding muslces. The course above will train the muscles, and for the relaxation there are a lot of different courses. I use the one Bruce Frantzis teaches.

Edit: In a lame excuse to keep this post in line of the topic theme, I can say that B. Frantzis's main teachings are daoist ones, of Chinese origin.


Thanks IDQuest. I did do some of those exercises from a back video I had. Didn't help much, but I'll look into it further. I understand though the relaxation theory - because it does feel like my hip is never relaxed. I really basically need to get moving - ALOT. I felt so much better recently during hurricane Sandy. Just because we had no power, and I was constantly moving & doing something. I had no computer, iPad, smartphone, etc. to keep my occupied in a sitting position. It's really my own fault. When you have back problems, you start getting locked into what you can't do, instead of working through a little pain. It gets noticably worse in the winter even indoors, so I'm having a hard time doing that.

Any remedies for anxiety/OCD or stress?


There's quite a few diagnoses in chinese medicine for anxiety. Heart Shen, gallbladder formulas (fear based anxiety) etc. Maybe Luminosity can suggest something, but have you tried 5-htp for stress & anxiety (I use it when needed)? Some also use inositol for OCD.

Edited by Clarity, 04 February 2013 - 06:04 PM.


#23 Clarity

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 06:07 PM

For Brainfogged: http://www.raysaheli...vedisorder.html

It mentions Strep infection as a trigger for OCD too, and incidentally my brother has OCD & Tourettes - both came on after strep when he was 6.

#24 Luminosity

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Posted 07 February 2013 - 03:50 AM

But I had been thinking about using knox gelatin for the collagen - I get a little nervous about collagen supplements ever since doing bovine colostrum and having it end up in disaster. -- Clarity

Not sure if you are sensitive to all dairy/beef products? If not, I'm guessing they would be different enough to not pose a problem, but I find bovine gelatin impossible to break down. It makes my skin errupt. Some people like it. I find chicken type II collagen much more assimilable. The molecules are smaller. I would take it as I recommend it as that is the most digestible way. -- Luminosity

Trying to keep on top of taking whey protein.

Jan McBaron M.D. who is also a Naturopath, recommends One World Whey. It is from raw (grass fed?) milk. She has a radio show called Duke and the Doctor.


MSM never works out for me after a few days. I start getting joint pain, and brain fog.

What form and brand to you take? Have you tried it the way I recommended it? I can't take other forms. They gave me gas, bloating and brain fog.

While I don't think I can cut out my decaf, I am going to make a real effort to cut out the diet soda.

Good.

I think the herbal coffee substitute I recommended might be spelled Teeccino.

. . . probably chicken collagen is probably safer than knox gelatin (beef). My only problem is if it has any glucosamine or chondroitin components to it, I can't tolerate that. I have the same problem with those that I have with MSM. In fact, I feel like I've been ran over by a truck when I take Gluc/Chondroitin.

I did too, but this is different. These are assimilable. The others might have been made of of crab shells or something not digestible to you.

A nutrient can be life-giving, useless or an irritant depending on the form.

#25 Clarity

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 02:45 AM

Oops, for whatever reason, I stopped getting notifications for this thread & had to refollow it - sorry!

You are absolutely right about the glucosamine! I found out about a day or two after last posting that glucosamine is made from shellfish. This really annoys the hell out of me, because I never knew that, and they really need to start labeling supplements for those with seafood allergies. While I don't have the typical allergic reaction, I cannot take fish oil supplements or even algae based DHA supplements because I get an inflammatory response (the infamous joint pain). I do get a mild response to seafood itself, but very occasionally I do have shellfish in small amounts with maybe a tinge of joint pain. So I did purchase the swansons & have been taking it for a few days without any problems. But really, they should be labeling it for people with serious seafood allergies. I notice they are now labeling some as "shellfish free", but no labeling when it is shellfish. I'm wondering though - is collagen safe to take regarding heart/arterial health? I did notice the sciatica went away, but I threw out my back a bit after shoveling snow (I'll never learn).

The last time I took MSM it was NSI brand (which obviously was a while ago since it's now vitacost). I think I've tried other brands. But I took one a few times this week wtihout a problem.

After learning about the shellfish in glucosamine, I'm now wondering about other supplements I've had the same side effect and what exactly they are derived from. There needs to be more accountability & transparency by these supplement manufacturers. I heard today on the news that Vit D supplements do not often even have the dosages they claim on the label. It's really a crime that they can get away with that.

#26 Clarity

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 03:00 AM

That whey protein is a little on the expensive side, but I'll check out other raw/organic sources. I saw Garden of Life raw protein is priced well. I've been using Jarrows because it has the branch chained aminos. It just seems to give me more energy, and I don't have any s/e from the aminos like I can get with some others.

One of my customers who is a naturopath told me she didn't like Whey protein at all, but I didn't get into the details with her. I wasn't having anyone blow my love for whey to bits. Everyone has such opposite opinions. You could find a negative for every supplement.

Sorry to take this so off topic...

Edited by Clarity, 13 February 2013 - 03:00 AM.


#27 Luminosity

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Posted 15 February 2013 - 03:21 AM

There's no off topics on my threads. Thanks for responding. Don't know much about whey but I'm guessing that the raw, organic, green fed stuff is a lot more digestible. Haven't tried it because I couldn't imagine that more dairy would be good, but people are into it so I'm keeping an open mind.

I know what you mean about vitamins. I've had to spend thirty years learning what the good ones are. I'm unaware of how the chicken collagen could affect your heart negatively. It's basically something that chicken soup is made of. It's chicken cartilage. When you say you took "one" MSM, is that a pill? Since you are so sensitive, you should really take the form I recommended, plain powder dissolved in water, on an empty stomach, preferably with a little vitamin C or juice or fruit. I'd start with half a teaspoon twice a day and slowly work up to the point where you feel like it's too much then cut back. I take a total of four teaspoons a day. You may need a lot based on your issues. It's a question of how much you can tolerate before you get gas, sluggishness, etc. I like Source Naturals plain powder, but Jarrow is fine, or any brand that uses OptiMSM as their source. I don't take it after dinner because it keeps me from sleeping.

Swansons and Whole Foods have liberal return policies.

Each vitamin has it's own particular issues, so specific knowledge is needed. I have that and am happy to share. Reviewing the info above can help as can googling my posts on this forum about any particular vitamin. In general, Jarrow is a good brand, Source Naturals is good, the one Vitacost brand supplement I have taken is good. Gaia Organics is a good brand. I like their herbal extracts with alcohol. As with food, not every product that given company makes is good or agrees with everyone.

Your sciata went away? That's pretty major. Wow. It went away until you decided to shovel snow. So . . . nuff said. Hopefully someone else can do that.

Happy Valentines

Edited by Luminosity, 15 February 2013 - 03:37 AM.


#28 Clarity

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 05:38 PM

Thanks luminosity! Here's the weird wrench in all of my symptoms - well not really weird because I know gut inflammation causes SO many whole body symptoms with me... I had been using virgin coconut oil again, except I've been using it for much longer than I ever had. I was blaming the new digestive problems on a change in probiotics, but it turns out the VCO was causing all the problems. I was getting joint pain in my wrists and hands again. Horrible digestive bloating & pain, like I did with H Pylori. Some people might claim that's some kind of H Pylori dyoff, but I have gallbladder problems.

The back pain much improved since stopping! I need to pay attention more to inflamation triggers with my back.

I no longer believe the whole spiel that VCO is not digested by the gallbladder. Maybe it isn't, but it certainly congested my liver. I had estrogen dominance symptoms too. I couldn't figure out for the life of me where that was coming from. Now I know.

I had stopped alot of supplements, so now I have to start from square one with the collagen, MSM and I have this chinese formula I was using that kicked the bootie out of some weird viral thing that came and went in 2 days. It's Xiao Chai Hu Wan ( tang) - I used Min Shan brand. Very interesting reactions from it. I'll eventually post on that here when I get a chance.

#29 Luminosity

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Posted 21 February 2013 - 06:23 AM

We have some similarities. I can't take cold-pressed virgin organic coconut oil. It gives me acne. A thing is only good for you if your body can break it down and use it. That kind of oil can be life-giving to some people, but not to others. This is true of anything. I can take a little bit of good quality coconut milk which would contain some oil. I have had a lot of trouble breaking down oils and fats, but I'm getting better.

#30 Clarity

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Posted 22 February 2013 - 05:48 PM

We have some similarities. I can't take cold-pressed virgin organic coconut oil. It gives me acne. A thing is only good for you if your body can break it down and use it. That kind of oil can be life-giving to some people, but not to others. This is true of anything. I can take a little bit of good quality coconut milk which would contain some oil. I have had a lot of trouble breaking down oils and fats, but I'm getting better.


It's a shame, because it was helping at the beginning, and I definitely was noticing some kind of thyroid boost (without depleting my adrenals) and a substantial raise in body temperature. I started breaking out in cystic acne too. I worry about getting enough saturated fat for hormone production & brain function. The only saturated fats I get are usually from meat. I've added a higher fat milk daily to try to compensate. Funny, that doesn't bother me at all. I eat very low cholesterol, which isn't good. But I really don't have a choice. It's a genetic thing (or maladaption thing) in my family - we don't process fats well.




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