This morning I cried…

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Most people wake up in the morning and do not have to “think” about what they are about to eat. Egg, toast, bacon, avocado, oats….all easy grab and go meals. Man, oh man do I miss those days. When food for the most part, was for nourishment. Where I didn’t have to worry did I soak it too long or not long enough, will my body be able to manage, will my bowels constrict, will I vomit or worse yet will I have an anaphylaxis episode.

As I stared at my bowl of gluten-free oats that I had soaked over night, all the above flashed before my eyes. Its going on seven years, my life was altered changed for ever, based on lack of knowledge. Five of those years I have been scrambling to figure out what happened and figure out a way to stabilize myself to be well. All the while working to do the same for my children, which thank God is working. So now its my turn!!

So here I was getting my children ready for school, bustling about (actually rushing, we got up a little later than usual) and my eyes would glance over to the bowl. I kept thinking “Could this be the day?” “Could this be the day, my cells do not reject what I feed it?” “The day my body does not tingle as tiny reminders of the anaphylaxis that lies beneath my skin isn’t triggered, or by stomach does not balloon where I appear six months pregnant?” “Could today be the day?” Listening to my children giggle as they watched Curious George, I push that all aside as we are now very late and need to get to the bus.

I come back from dropping them off and glance over at the bowl, tears slide down my face. I am weary, it is okay now to let my guard down to just be. I stand there thinking  “I just can not do chicken again this morning, I just can’t.”  “But is that bowl and my need for change in my morning routine worth it?”  “I have two children to care for, studying to do.”” I can not afford my brain fogging over, getting lost as it misfires not able to retain knowledge. As words jump from the page and become jumbled as the pressure mounts in my head, my eyes straining even behind glasses.”

I rinse the oats and heat them up. I remembered I had taken a digestive enzyme which has made a world of difference in being able to eat again, so that takes off some pressure. Since it will be an all or nothing type of day, I decide to top it with some wholesome goodness. A spoonful of sun butter, blackberries and sprinkled with pumpkin and sunflower seeds. Oh and what the heck, toss in a few Enjoy Life chocolate chunks. It looks sooooo good. I prepare my Holy Basil tea and just stare at it. All I could think was “Can I eat this?” I say a prayer and I begin. One spoonful, I slowly chew so concerned with anaphylaxis. I have been able to manage that naturally by eating fresh thyme as soon as it begins but it still creates havoc within my body. Next spoonful, no numbness, my throat is not closing over, I can breathe. Okay, things are looking good!!

I finished the bowl and thankfully no anaphylaxis, however twenty minutes in there was some inflammation of my joints and some swelling in my stomach but no anaphylaxis!! I consider that a major win!!  I will still listen to my body, inflammation and bloating are both signs to heed. But even with that little set back I am still ahead. The lowering of my histamine levels, cooking to support internal inflammation all are taking effect. My body is slowly healing and I can eat more things.

I am sharing this today because allergies, sensitivities and intolerance are real and they create major stress in families lives. I am a grown woman, who it took this to occur for me to get in tune with my body.  This all started for me hours after taking a flu shot while pregnant. Before this I was a smorgasbord eater lol, I could eat just about anything. I was thirty-seven when this occurred and it forever changed my life and the life of my children. I share to give others hope, that they can rebuild, they can reclaim their health. I also share for those who are well, to never take your health for granted. Cherish it and treat your body with love so it can care for you.

So the next time you are frustrated because some child has an allergy, you can’t send that particular snack, or you don’t think allergies or food issues are a big deal, we are all one choice away from this becoming “you”. I really hope my story pops into your mind. These people who are effected are not trying to make your lives harder, for many they are trying to survive.

Wishing You A Wonderful Day!!

Your Nutritionist in Training
Trina

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Sensitive Children and the link to the Endocrine System

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With so many articles written addressing the emotional well-being of our children most fail to look internally to find the answers. For most the quickest fix unfortunately is the prescribing of medication which is very disruptive in  a growing body. An area that should be reviewed when dealing with a “sensitive child” is what is going on internally, looking for the root of the problem. Once the root of the problem is addressed and supported the body can very well (initially with support) right itself.

Our emotions (a.k.a hormones) are controlled by our Thyroid which is part of the Endocrine System which is a very important part of our bodies. It is compiled of the thyroid, adrenals, hypothalamus, pituitary, pancreas and ovaries/testes. The thyroid has a very important function in breast-feeding, as it paired with the hypothalamus, and pituitary gland all work together to produce the two hormones (prolactin/oxytocin) that govern the last stages of milk production.  It is well-known and documented in adults that if this system is not operating properly , emotions such as anxiety, depression, insomnia, panic attacks and mood swings occur. A disruption in this system in a growing child can disrupt brain chemistry which can have long-term health effects. Our children are no different than us and stress on their growing endocrine system can result in the very same deficiencies resulting in behaviors.

As parents it is very important for us to keep in mind, any body system we struggle with there is a good chance our children may as well. We need to see them as little people who have developing bodies that may be deficient and need support internally before we look to a synthetic way of masking the problem. Ways to support the endocrine system are through the removal of gluten (food intolerance known or unknown can disrupt the thyroid) ,  eating raw cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, brussels sprouts), sea vegetables (sea weed, algae) brazil nuts (high in selenium), smoothies with maca and or chlorophyll, and avoid soy protein isolate. For those families with allergies, sensitivities and intolerance nuts in particular may be a problem. Some other sources of selenium are tuna, lamb, chicken and beef.

For parents struggling with an emotional child who is having melt downs, trouble managing emotions, sensitive, having trouble with sleep, there is a way to assist you child please do not give up hope!  I encourage you to seek out a supportive doctor, a doctor who practices functional medicine, Natropath and holistic nutritionist. There are ways to restore the body so that it can function properly. Our children are precious and are looking to us to advocate for them. Never forget there is always hope!!

Wishing You an Amazing Day!!

Your Nutritionist in Training!

Trina

 

Sources:

Anxiety? Panic Attacks? Depression? Mood Swings? The Thyroid Roller Coaster Ride

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2799043/

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-10681/what-you-should-eat-to-improve-thyroid-health.html

The Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby and Child Care – Sally Fallon & Thomas S. Cowan M.D

 

Growing a Baby, please consider….

Pregnant Stomach

The last little while I have been reading so many posts of pregnant women who are struggling on what to take supplement wise. With so much information out there on top of hormones it can get so over whelming. I remember what it was like to be wading through those waters. And for women with allergies, sensitivities and intolerances it can get increasingly more challenging. So here are a few things I have learned.

Calcium (1,200-1,600 mg)

Calcium is so important especially when pregnant. If a woman getting enough in her diet her child will pull the calcium from her bones to nourish itself. This creates health issues for both mother and unborn child. Calcium is important in helping form the baby’s bones and teeth and aids in muscle and heart function, blood clotting and nerve transmission.

Foods that can be added to the diet to meet the requirements are : nuts, seeds, leafy greens, sea vegetables, fish as well as milk and whole grains. However if you have allergies, sensitivities or intolerances to any listed please avoid and look for substitutes.

One brand to consider when picking your vitamins that contains no dairy, wheat, gluten and peanuts is SISU

Iron (30-50mg)

Over the last week I was reading some mom’s to be were upset that their doctors had prescribed them iron and did not think it was necessary. Now I totally agree the synthetic version of iron is unnecessary, however iron itself is quite important. Iron is a crucial nutrient needed to build blood cells in the mother and baby. Considering the mothers blood volume needs to increase by 50% during pregnancy I would say that it is a major factor in the creating of a healthy baby. Another important feature of iron is it aids in disease resistance and elimination.

Foods that are very high in iron: 3 cups streamed chard, 1.5 ounces of pumpkin seeds, 3 cups sorgumn pasta, 1.5 tbs of black strap molasses. Other sources are beef liver, red meats, salmon, seeds, nuts, prunes, chard mushrooms, seaweed.

It may be hard to get the adequate amount in you diet and if anemia occurs here are two plant based vitamins high in iron. Mega Food Blood Builders and Floradix.

Zinc (20-40 mg)

It is needed to aid normal development of the immune system. The foods it is found in is the same as iron.

Natural Factors is a popular brand.

Folic Acid (800-1,200 mcg)

This is so important  to help form red blood cells, aid growth and reproduction of other cells and to support the nervous system of the developing baby. Interesting enough it helps stimulate the mothers appetite.

Foods this vitamin can be found in are the following: yeast, fish, leafy vegetables, organ meats.

Two allergen free options are BioCare and Kirkmans. Also Prenatal Plus has a prenatal vitamin that may be one to consider.

Other vitamins that play a role are A,E, and B6, minerals that are helpful are iodine, magnesium and sodium. When you think of sodium, consider celery, beets, red meats, seaweed and seafood.

The above are so very important in the building of a beautiful new life. Some other things to consider outside of foods are what vaccinations you put into the body. When you consider all vaccinations contain food proteins (dairy, egg, gluten, nut) among other ingredients it is imperative you weigh out the risk of allergy to both yourself and your unborn child. It is a delicate time for the both of you, consider weighing the risks of injecting the unknown into a body hard at work building your perfect bundle of joy.

I wish someone had taken the time to share the above with me. However since I can not go back and change the past I would most definitely like to help those who are making decisions in the present.

Wishing You an Amazing Journey!

Your Budding Nutritionist

Trina

Resources:

Staying Healthy with Nutrition – Elson M. Haas, MD
http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vac-gen/additives.htm
http://vactruth.com/2011/05/28/rise-in-childhood-food-allergies-being-linked-to-vaccinations/
http://www.drgreene.com/vaccine-ingredients-allergic-reactions/
http://www.naturalhealth365.com/food-allergies-vaccines-1541.html

Herbs benifits, more than just for cooking!!

kaboompics.com_Basil in the cup II

This summer has been an amazing journey of continuing to heal myself though the very foods I eat. It has been the first summer in six years I was not running to the pharmacy to replenish my allergy medication. The first summer I could venture outside and begin to enjoy the warmer temperatures without breaking out into an uncontrollable sweat that made working out look like childs’ play. That my feet didn’t swell making it excruciating to walk. Even better it was the first summer I was able to tame my oral allergy syndrome and enjoy fruit again without experiencing anaphylaxis.

In May even with my diet as clean as I could possibly get I was still struggling to eat. In 2009 I received my one and only flu shot while pregnant and as a result I developed the oral allergy, egg allergy and milk protein allergy. With each year the symptoms had grown and this year due to the oral allergy I was prescribed an epi-pen. My body being so stressed I was down to eating rice and kale and my body was in desperate need of help. Having been to my doctor I still could not get any answers. After a visit with my Natropath she shared with me about histamine intolerance and the pieces of what I was struggling with began to fit. So being a research fan I began to dig.

Initially I was looking at the list of what I already could not eat paired with the histamine intolerance diet and well I was already on that diet without even knowing it. Well not quite however my body was severely lacking nutrients. Thankfully I stumbled upon a site called the Low HIstamine Chef, and it was here I learned that pairing high nutrient, low histamine foods could help stabilize your body. Through her health experiences and her willingness to share I finally began to be able to find way to heal.

My first step was lowering my histamine levels in my body, which was quite the challenge considering everything I ate created a reaction of some sort. So I began researching and then applying some of the Low Histamine Chef’s suggestions. Here are a few that I started with, all trial and error however my body began to thank me for it right away

Green Tea – this tea has so many benefits, one being dealing with inflammation. Incorporating this helped with the swelling in the joints of my fingers as well as eliminations of histamines and excess water. Some other benefits of green tea are the following regulate blood sugar and blood pressure, boost the immune system, prevent ulcers, control inflammation, viral colds and flu, prevents gum disease, cavities, and bad breath

Basil – to think adding this into my meals would assist in helping with histamine and inflammation. The oil in basil qualifies basil as an “anti-inflammatory” food that can provide important healing benefits along with symptomatic relief for individuals with inflammatory health problems like rheumatoid arthritis or inflammatory bowel conditions.

Thyme – this is my go too, especially if I have eaten something that is causing me a reaction. It has proven to stop anaphylaxis in mice and those claims are so very true. It stopped my oral allergy in its tracks saving me the use of my epi-pen. All I had to do was to eat a few leaves off a sprig, it stopped the episode in seconds. It is also my go to when my stomach is upset.

Oregano – this is one herb that I add to my meals for all its antihistamine properties. Wild Oregano has at least seven different antihistamine chemicals. So as it helps to control histamine it also fights allergies as well as fungus and infection.

It has been so exciting to be able to lower my histamine levels naturally and begin to be able to eat again. In my studies to be a Holistic Nutritionist I am always looking for ways to heal the body naturally. My body is so very thankful!! If you are on a wellness journey never give up, I am living proof you can get better, one change at a time.

Sources

Natural Histamine and Herbs – by Andrew Pacholyk
http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=85
http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-green-tea.html
Photo Courtesy: Kaboompics

No Eggs, No Problem!!

In a pinch, can’t get to the store, here are some alternatives to eggs. Whether it be due to an allergy or a preference there is always something on hand to take their place. At your next get together why not surprise someone with a yummy treat that is egg free! They may just love you for it!!

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Why I am pro IgG!

With food allergies, sensitivities and intolerance sometimes the road to find the root(s) of the problem is an ever winding road. With so may detours that when you get there you are too tired to celebrate. It took me three years to learn this valuable lesson. So today I am sharing my experience in hopes just one person can be on the road back to optimal health sooner than my family.

So what is IgG test? Well in the search for what ails you with foods the fastest way to getting answers, in my humble opinion. Well first I know everyone is familiar with a traditional blood test. Well a traditional blood test can show many possible illnesses. A few examples are as follows:

* blood glucose levels
* cholesterol levels (LDL, HDL)
* auto immune disease
* provide cancer markers and tumor markers (proteins found in your blood)
* liver health

So if a blood sample can tell you of illnesses would it not be a great place to start for food intolerance issues? After two failed tests for celiac, numerous trips to the doctors due to odd placed rashes, vomiting, diarrhea, food issues, screaming fits, and numerous other issues. I took the girls to a traditional allergists. Where interesting enough the IgE test most results came back pink without a hive. The IgE test shows the histamine reaction on the skin the “hive”. The same visit we also did the patch testing. That is where the skin is pricked and covered for a period of 24 to 48 hours. What traditionally is supposed to happen is a major hive or rash. What happened instead was all eight patches were flaming red. The allergists looked at me perplexed and had no answer. It was what he said that led me to the IgG test. When asked what was wrong as both of my kids were crying he said “I don’t know I have not seen that before.” “The only thing I can think of, is this is on the cellular level.” Nothing more than that aside from saying there was nothing he could do.

So once again I left another office exhausted with two girls in pain and no answers. However this time I had a clue, the word “cellular”. And I ran with it searching everything I could. Which was not much however I came across the IgG test and I knew a prayer had been answered.

So now what is IgG test. Well it takes place at a Natropaths office, and what they do is prick the finger and send the sample away. The blood sample is then tested against various foods to see which foods have the histamine response. This test looks for the IgG antibodies in relation to food. It can be tested on up to 300 food items.

Another interesting thing is that you do not have to eliminate foods before testing. So unlike the tests for celiac there is not a month to three months of eating the foods that are hurting you before the test can be preformed. My eldest had for the third time had the foods which were hurting her removed from her diet before the test. However that was not a requirement it just happened to be where we were in our cycle of food elimination trials. The IgG test still showed the reaction. The results were bang on to the foods I had already been questioning. Things finally made sense and having it on paper, well it was no longer me just reading her body/behaviors in food reactions. I had something concrete.

Since keeping my children allergen free they are happy healthy little girls. The rashes are gone, eczema gone, bleeding from the folds in her ears healed, bloated bellies gone and behaviors normal.

If you are struggling or your child is struggling with food issues and you can not get any answers this test is worth a try. I am not a doctor but I am a mom with a little experience to share and if I can help one person then my families experiences have done some good. If you are struggling to find the answers you really have nothing to lose. Wishing you the very best in your health journey the answers are but a finger prick away!!!

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Sources:
http://www.healthscopepathology.com.au/index.php/functional-pathology/tests/igg-food-sensitivity-profiles/
http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/bdt/show
http://www.greatplainslaboratory.com/home/eng/e-newsletter/igg_vs_ige.pdf