green onion for RSD?

OK who knows.  But recently I’ve noticed circulation changes in my legs and feet as well as a change in how I sweat.   The only thing I’ve been doing differently is eating green onions nearly every day for a month or so in fairly large amounts. I’ve been eating at least one green onion but sometimes two a day.

Granted, it’s been extra warm here so I imagine perhaps some perspiration and circulation credit might belong to the sun.  But it’s been warm here all summer and for other years that RSD has been with me.  I still couldn’t sweat properly and my circulation has never been what it once was.  So, being the obsessive googler that I am, I looked up the health benefits of green onions.  Initially I was eating them for anti-fungal/anti-viral benefits to build my immunity and clear my digestive tract.  That was the extent of my motivation and knowledge of the potentials of what i now feel may be the most underrated onion out there.

I found this:

“Many other advantages of the green onions in medicine include that it clears out the respiratory tract and expels sputum or phlegm. It also stimulates our sweat glands and promotes sweating which is important for our existence. Many people suffering from perspiring disorders may use it for their betterment…It has vitamins like A and C in the stem and calcium in the white part. Lastly it speeds up blood circulation and helps in the absorption of vitamin B1.”   See link below to article.

Again, I am not a doctor. I don’t know if too much green onion would have a negative reaction for anyone on certain meds or blood thinners.  People do not always appreciate that foods can alter the effect of medication so always check with your doctor to be sure there’s no conflict.

http://bit.ly/1Or5a34

Foods to fight anxiety. And possibly RSD?

RSD/CRPS is often described as an anxiety disorder (certainly gone awry) and a sympathetic system stuck in “fight or flight.” Maybe you don’t believe that. But likely anxiety has set in anyway from the overwhelming stress of the prognosis (a prognosis I believe doctors will learn later does not have to be and possibly contributes to the decline in some patients). What we do know is that western medicines like ketamine sedate the body. We now have learned ketamine is being used for depression as well. We know that many medications for RSD are anti-anxiety meds. With that knowledge, why aren’t more doctors prescribing meditation and a change in diet?

I am not a doctor or a nutritionist. I can only speak for me. But I did improve significantly when I started to practice qi gong on a regular basis. There is a cumulative effect to meditating. Food is another tool that has assisted in my calming endeavor. Turmeric, avocado, kale, fish oil, ginger root tea, among others (okay sometimes Cabernet).

Below is a list of 13 foods from a mindbodygreen blog that can help ease anxiety. So often we ignore the food we are putting in our bodies, eat unhealthy foods and then seek outside medicine. Maybe those foods aren’t unhealthy but they might not be helping our bodies. Perhaps they would be foods better suited for another medical condition.

What if food is the answer?

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-15428/13-foods-to-help-ease-anxiety-stress.html
from mindbodygreen:

1. Oysters Research has correlated an imbalance of zinc to copper with anxiety. This trace mineral ratio is responsible for proper neurotransmitter function and adaptation to stress. Increased copper and decreased zinc may lead to symptoms of anxiety.

2. Chamomile Tea Sip on this natural anti-anxiety medicine for its natural calming effect. This soothing, mild tea was shown to significantly decrease anxiety symptoms in just a few weeks!

3. Rooibos Tea Rooibos, or African red bush tea, is a delicious way to bring a natural calm to your day. Researchers are looking into its effect on cortisol. It seems to work by having a balancing effect on the body’s main stress hormone.

4. Full-Fat Kefir In functional medicine, the gut is considered the “second brain” because it’s home to 95% of your “feel good” hormone seratonin. With more than 100 million neurons, your gut’s health is essential to manage anxiety.

Bacterial imbalances in your gut can alter brain chemistry, and kefir, an ancient fermented dairy drink, might just be the most powerful probiotic ever! It also has fat soluble vitamins A, D and K2, all important for brain health.

5. Turkey …Tryptophan is a precursor to the neurotransmitter serotonin, which helps you to feel calm. Tryptophan in the form of meat, has been shown to reduce anxiety disorders!

6. Turmeric Curcuminoids, the antioxidants in turmeric, have a neuroprotective quality and help enhance your mood. It was shown in a randomized controlled trial to be an effective option for major depressive disorder, which is closely linked to anxiety disorders.

7. Organ Meats If you eat meat, organ meats are some of the best sources of nutrients needed to beat anxiety, like zinc and vitamin D. They also contain copious amounts of choline, needed for the synthesis of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Liver is also abundant in B vitamins, which are needed for methylation, a metabolic process in the body that is responsible for proper synthesis of neurotransmitters that regulate mood. Homocysteine levels and MTHFR mutations are two tests that I run to ensure optimal neurotransmitter metabolism and methylation.

8. Avocados This superfruit is great for brain health and anxiety. They contain potassium which helps naturally lower blood pressure. Avocados also contain beneficial B vitamins and monounsaturated fats that are needed for neurotransmitter and brain health.

9. Dark Chocolate Science has vindicated chocolate lovers everywhere. A randomized, placebo-controlled trial published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology revealed that people who drank a dark chocolate drink, equal to about 1.5 ounces of dark chocolate per day, felt calmer than those who did not.

10. Asparagus This sulfur-rich vegetable also contains the specifically beneficial B vitamin, folic acid. Low levels of folic acid are linked to neurotransmitter impairment, which can lead to anxiety. A 5.3-ounce serving provides 60% of the recommended daily allowance for folic acid! It also contains moderate amounts of potassium, which can lower blood pressure.

11. Adaptogenic Herbs One common hormonal signaling pathway dysfunction I find in patients struggling with anxiety disorders is the brain-adrenal axis. The hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis is part of your sympathetic “flight-or-fight ” response and something, and can play a role in adrenal fatigue. Stress hormones, like cortisol, can cause seratonin receptors to become less sensitive to activation. Adaptogenic herbs like ashwagandha, rhodiola and holy basil are some of the tools I use to optimize brain-adrenal function in patients.

12. Leafy Greens If you struggle with stress and anxiety increase the greens! Plant foods like Swiss chard and spinach are rich in magnesium, the natural “chill pill,” which also helps regulate the brain-adrenal axis.

13. Fatty Meat Inflammation is one factor when it comes to brain health and anxiety. Omega-3 fats have been shown to decrease anxiety. Omega-rich foods like Alaskan salmon and grass-fed beef can help decrease inflammation and help cortisol and adrenaline from spiking.

zoopharmacognosy

Cool article! I like that we aren’t the only animals who might seek out certain plants to heal us. My main healing “plants” are green tea, avocado, kale and ginger root. Right now I want to seek out a rice crispy treat to feel better. I walked by a cafe today that sells pretty yummy rice crispy treats but they add other cereals and they are amazing. I totally cased the joint to be sure they have them today…I might have to go get one…I walked two blocks out of my way to go lurk in their window. I feel I have gone off topic maybe. The article…worth the read but here are some snippets:

“The theory of self-medicating animals, known as zoopharmacognosy, has been spotted in macaws in Brazil, elephants in Kenya and even dogs and cats in the UK and US. ‘The science of animal self-medication is derived from the roots zoo (‘animal’), pharma (‘drug’), and gnosy (‘knowing’). ‘It’s not clear how much knowing or learning is involved, but many animals seem to have evolved an innate ability to detect the therapeutic constituents in plants…

‘Dogs do not have the means to digest grass, as they lack the enzymes needed to break down the fibres,’ explained Vancouver-based vet Dr. Michael Goldberg. ‘Thus, there is little nutritional value in it for them. One reason for eating grass may be due to a feeling of nausea. ‘It is possible that dogs learn this is a temporary solution for stomach irritation.’ He continued that tests on dogs that have exhibited these behaviours have later revealed inflammatory conditions in their stomachs, as well as signs of gastric reflux or bowel disease…

Red and green macaws have been known to eat kaolin clay to help with digestion problems. This is said to be a ‘detoxifying’ strategy. The diet of the Amazonian macaw, for example, is made up primarily of seeds and this can lead to them eating toxic berries and other items that resembles seeds.

More than 200 species of birds, for example, grasp ants in their bills and wipe them across their feathers. This is known as anting. In particular, ants that spray formic acid can kill off feather lice and protect the birds from infection.”

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2868348/Do-animals-SELF-MEDICATE-Dogs-elephants-chimps-parrots-use-natural-remedies-treat-digestive-problems-induce-birth.html#ixzz3LjclrYVv
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Lifestyle Changes Bring Back Memory & Cognitive Function – A UCLA Study

I LOVE reading articles such as this one. Amazing…let’s hope that people are willing to try. So many people refuse to admit they play a role in their own health and chalk everything up to “it runs in the family.” I used to be one of those people.

“Ten memory-loss patients, some with brain-scan-confirmed patterns of Alzheimer’s, participated in a small UCLA trial called MEND (Metabolic Enhancement for NeuroDegeneration).
In the UCLA protocol, patients made dramatic lifestyle changes. They avoided simple carbs, gluten and processed foods. They increased their fish intake, took yoga and meditated. They were instructed to take melatonin, get adequate sleep, incorporate vitamin B-12, vitamin D-3 and fish oil.
Within six months, nine patients saw a noticeable improvement in memory. One patient, who was in the late stages of Alzheimer’s, did not show improvement. UCLA researchers say the findings suggest at least early on, changing a person’s metabolic processes can bring back memory and cognitive function.
Six of the patients of the patients in the study who had to discontinue working were all able to return to their jobs. Study authors say some patients were followed up to two and a half years and the memory improvements remained.

http://abc7news.com/health/non-drug-treatment-may-reverse-alzheimers/336963/

Table for One

Yesterday I had a stressful work day and, as soon as I could escape it, I grabbed my Ipod and went out for one of my walk-runs. It was about 3:30 in the afternoon and the sun was still strong. I listened to Songs of Freedom and had a really big smile on my face thinking about my loved ones. It was an amazing hour of peace after a day of work chaos. As I was crossing the street a block from my home, I realized a woman was yelling at me from across the street. I turned my music down to hear her scream at me “your face is so ugly, I bet you never get sick!!” She seemed to feel very adamant about this.
All I could think was “cool, i don’t want to get sick.” And I laughed at how ones view of health changes after losing it for a while. One thing is for sure, people seem extra stressed out right now. That seems perfectly natural given all things in the news but I want no part of it. Then I turned my music back up, went back home for a shower and took myself out to a nice early dinner with a book. I’ve started doing that more often. My old pain psychologist used to encourage me to take myself out and just enjoy food and sounds, that it would trigger calm in me and the pain would lessen.
I was not in pain yesterday but certainly craved calm. Chardonnay, a beet salad with goat cheese, a beautiful patio and a book. Total bliss. I used to only do this when I was already in so much pain that it only helped a little. But now I do it because I love it. It’s no longer weird for me. And I think it helps me get and sustain calm. RSD people seem to have the out of whack sympathetic response and so things that trigger the parasympathetic will calm us. Dining alone seems to do it. Turns out it might be really good for digestion and absorption of nutrients to boot.

“Going beyond just chewing food well, ridding of all distractions is another fantastic way to improve digestion. Why? Because our autonomic nervous system, which controls activities of our organs, glands, and involuntary muscles, operates in two states:
1) Parasympathetic: Activates tranquil functions, like stimulating the secretion of saliva or digestive enzymes in the stomach.
2) Sympathetic: Stimulates activites that prepare the body for action, like increasing the heart rate, increasing the release of sugar from the liver into the blood, and other fight-or-flight responses.
When we are distracted while eating (even if we don’t think we are), our bodies switch to the sympathetic state, diverting attention from the release of important digestive enzymes and general digestive functions. This prepares the body for action (like running away from a lion). The result? Digestion and absorption of nutrients are impaired. And that’s pretty much the worst combination…. Not being able to properly digest food, which affects the assimilation of nutrients that our body actually uses. Not good.”

http://julesfuel.com/2013/09/09/restaurant-diet-improve-health/

Wheatgrass

My new obsession.  I wondered if something that builds red blood cells and cleansed blood would help a condition in which blood flow is such an issue. I have had blood letting done and i have seen what some of the funky blood looks like and it’s clear why it wasn’t flowing so well.  I’ve been drinking shots of fresh wheatgrass juice every other day or sometimes a few days in a row for about a month or so now. I feel so much better on days i have it and the day after. If i go a few days without, I certainly feel it.

Read the link about potential benefits. Supposedly some people can be highly allergic but not necessarily those with gluten issues because of when the grass is juiced. I have some gluten sensitivity and the wheatgrass does not elicit a funky gluten response in me at all.  In fact, I think it’s made that better for me.

http://thechalkboardmag.com/50-reasons-to-drink-wheatgrass-everyday

 

Doctor Confined to Wheelchair Walks Again By Changing Her Diet

http://fox4kc.com/2014/04/28/doctor-confined-to-wheelchair-walks-again-by-changing-her-diet/

Very inspiring!!  I watched her Tedtalk a few years ago and she’s actually the reason I thought to do IV vitamins.   That proved to be far too powerful (did some wacky things) and I think sticking with healthy foods to heal is where I will stay.   She has sold me on kale and its benefits.   For the longest time I hated kale and now I actually crave it because it does make me feel so much better, especially when it is the primary food in my diet.

Dandelion Tea

It’s disgusting.  But I drink it fairly regularly now. I do feel like it helps. If you told me the dirty matted grass outside my apartment that has been walked on and pooped on would make a great healing tea, I’d probably be out there picking some inside an hour.  I absolutely love teas for healing. I drink chai green when I can handle some caffeine because I do find that green tea is the best anti-inflammatory around (apparently the chai spices are great for the immune system), mint tea when I have stuffed my face or just have slow digestion and dandelion tea when I feel my liver needs a kick (which I believe helps my nervous system).  Mint tea actually freaks me out that you can drink one cup and you’re tooting away. Or so i hear.. 😉

Here’s a great list of benefits of dandelion on this link.  Specifically I use the tea for the liver health due to the liver-brain connection and because of its anti-inflammatory properties. 

http://www.sunwarrior.com/news/11-health-benefits-of-dandelion-and-dandelion-root/

ome health food markets or as a freeze-dried herb. Dandelion tea, capsules, and tinctures are also available. – See more at: http://www.sunwarrior.com/news/11-health-benefits-of-dandelion-and-dandelion-root/#sthash.6tgRLMht.dpuf

Liver – Dandelion has been shown to improve liver function by removing toxins and reestablishing hydration and electrolyte balance.

Antioxidants – Every part of the dandelion plant is rich in antioxidants that prevent free-radical damage to cells and DNA, slowing down the aging process in our cells.

– See more at: http://www.sunwarrior.com/news/11-health-benefits-of-dandelion-and-dandelion-root/#sthash.6tgRLMht.dpuf

Liver – Dandelion has been shown to improve liver function by removing toxins and reestablishing hydration and electrolyte balance.

Antioxidants – Every part of the dandelion plant is rich in antioxidants that prevent free-radical damage to cells and DNA, slowing down the aging process in our cells.

– See more at: http://www.sunwarrior.com/news/11-health-benefits-of-dandelion-and-dandelion-root/#sthash.6tgRLMht.dpuf

Liver – Dandelion has been shown to improve liver function by removing toxins and reestablishing hydration and electrolyte balance.

Antioxidants – Every part of the dandelion plant is rich in antioxidants that prevent free-radical damage to cells and DNA, slowing down the aging process in our cells.

– See more at: http://www.sunwarrior.com/news/11-health-benefits-of-dandelion-and-dandelion-root/#sthash.6tgRLMht.dpuf

Liver – Dandelion has been shown to improve liver function by removing toxins and reestablishing hydration and electrolyte balance.

Antioxidants – Every part of the dandelion plant is rich in antioxidants that prevent free-radical damage to cells and DNA, slowing down the aging process in our cells.

– See more at: http://www.sunwarrior.com/news/11-health-benefits-of-dandelion-and-dandelion-root/#sthash.6tgRLMht.dpuf

Liver – Dandelion has been shown to improve liver function by removing toxins and reestablishing hydration and electrolyte balance.

Antioxidants – Every part of the dandelion plant is rich in antioxidants that prevent free-radical damage to cells and DNA, slowing down the aging process in our cells.

– See more at: http://www.sunwarrior.com/news/11-health-benefits-of-dandelion-and-dandelion-root/#sthash.6tgRLMht.dpuf

Liver – Dandelion has been shown to improve liver function by removing toxins and reestablishing hydration and electrolyte balance.

Antioxidants – Every part of the dandelion plant is rich in antioxidants that prevent free-radical damage to cells and DNA, slowing down the aging process in our cells.

– See more at: http://www.sunwarrior.com/news/11-health-benefits-of-dandelion-and-dandelion-root/#sthash.6tgRLMht.dpuf

Food to Improve Inflammation Levels

I am so empowered by articles and blogs like this one.  I do feel it for myself that if I eat things for my brain and for my liver,  I feel a whole lot better overall and my RSD symptoms are much fewer.  Leafy greens, cabbage and avocados. Lots of avocados. I feel those are the foods that help me the most (in addition to fish and eggs).  Also last night after I had sushi and green tea for dinner there may or may not have been marshmallow Peeps in my belly.

The portion of this most important for RSDers, I think, is Paragraph 3 of this link: “A plant-based diet improves inflammation, weight, and vascular health.”

“A recent research group in Pennsylvania studied 63 individuals with heart disease who followed the Ornish program and compared them to a group of 63 people who did not follow any particular program. While the control group experienced no improvement in health, the Ornish group lost weight and blood pressure fell by about 10%.

At 12 weeks, researchers found that 26 genes were exhibiting different activity in the Ornish group. After a year, 143 genes were doing the same. The genes that promoted inflammation and blood vessel injury were significantly reduced in activity. The control group showed no improvements as they maintained their standard diet during the year.

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-13477/how-the-food-you-eat-changes-your-genes.html