When I was ruminating about how to manage some new symptoms, I stumbled upon the benefits of unsweetened bitter herbs in balancing blood sugars. This discovery has helped manage some wild fluctuations but it is not a fail-proof strategy. I still bottomed out yesterday with seizure attacks at the kitchen table about an hour after following this new sequence. My beloved had to feed me while I shook, leaning precariously on our glass dining room table. It hurt. This situation is still hell.
It’s clearer more now than ever before that the swinging of my blood glucose levels is contributing to seizure attack episodes and the difficulty managing both of them. The endoscopy ultrasound (EUS) this past week found a particular type of pancreatic cyst, pre-cancerous but one in which surgery is not currently recommended. So while I grasp the magnitude of what a 6-month surveillance program looks like for the potentially deadliest of cancers, I am dealing with yet another new diagnosis: pre-diabetes. Say what? Tis much to bear right now.
I’ve spent most of my adult life managing “borderline hypoglycemia” with diet. This means no concentrated sweets, higher fiber foods, protein-rich snacks between meals and only low-sugar fruits with the baseline concerns of dairy-free, gluten-free, low-medium oxalate, largely organic/non-GMO, and lower in the categories of red meat and night shades. Whew. It’s a miracle that I have found anything to eat at all! Or that I have not gained a ton of weight when battling serious illness these past 8 years. Food is fuel and there are now more specialized products on the market from which to choose. Thank you Lord! “They say” that hypoglycemia can turn into diabetes sometime in a person’s life. I also understand that pre-D can be reversible with lifestyle changes. O.k., so let’s go for that option.
Still I have come to the end of my ability to figure out what to do now. The Docs say that the pancreatic cyst, even though it’s in the organ that manages blood sugar for the body via insulin and glucagon, has little to do with blood sugar difficulties per se. Full blown diabetes is associated with a greater risk of cancer when you have a pancreatic cyst. What about pre-diabetes? “I can refer you to a dietitian if you like,” said the Nurse Practitioner in the gastroenterology oncology department. Why sure! What else have you got that I haven’t tried already folks? Exogenous ketone supplements without the sweeteners? I’m on it, however even the ketogenic diet under the direction of a hospital dietitian didn’t help me two years ago. Too much fat these days triggers belly pain anyways. Tough challenge for sure. Referral is now pending.
Call me cynical because I am. I am in shock. Thankfully there are Facebook and online support systems, even apps for these diagnoses so I will avail myself to them. The isolation of being home alone dealing with all of this is crushing however. I tried leaving the house the day before the EUS procedure to get some errands done and came home really messed up. I always carry a lunch bag of special foods and water with me when I leave the house. And now it’s just not enough. I’ve reached out to my Doctors at Mayo Clinic to see if there is more expertise out there on these matters, particularly in connection to the seizure-like episodes. I cannot get into see an endocrinologist locally until JANUARY!
I just don’t know what I don’t know right now. Are you working Your plans somehow through all of this my precious Lord? Help me Lord! JJ
P.S. My new favorite snack is Hippeas Himalayan Happiness
There’s no pretending when the story gets bizarre. I mean who could make this stuff up?
As the grace of the Lord has blessed, I am not bedridden thus far in the ramp up of treatment for a serious protozoal infection. Just headaches, increased convulsive episodes at night or morning, achiness, and fits-n-starts of my ability to function. While this is certainly awful, I was sick like this every day for the middle years of these 4.5 years of illness so I am kind of familiar with it. This time we can call it a “herxheimer” (die-off) reaction and temporary! I am thinking that I have benefitted from a pretty comprehensive protocol that has finally come together:
Ongoing IV Rocephin and fluids via home infusions 3x per week for the treatment of chronic Lyme disease, per my Lyme Literate Medical Doctor (LLMD).
Weekly injections of a compounded B-vitamin and prescribed nutritional suspension.
Weekly injections of a bio-homeopathic treatment for a newly diagnosed autoimmune disease (to start in 2 days).
Additional IV fluids now pending to combat dehydration and the effects of the anti-fungal protocol.
Supplements to improve calcium trafficking as prescribed by my naturopath and genetic coach.
Pharmaceutical grade supplements including an iodine protocol.
A switch from filtered water to non-fluoridated, purified bottled water.
Anti-fungal and biofilm busting treatment of protomyxzoa rheumatica (formerly known as FL 1953).
Continued mold/sugar/sweetener/dairy/gluten-free, low oxalate and glutamate diet.
Mineral baths and celtic sea salt supplementation.
Detoxification via far-infrared sauna, nutritional binding compounds, and periodic colon hydrotherapy.
A fabulous support system.
Rest. Gardening when possible. Rest.
Unfortunately the bills are piling up as Steve and I go along. At some point we will need to decide how comprehensive of a plan is really needed long term due to the significant expense when insurance covers virtually nothing. For now all I can say is that I continue to move in a direction of recovery and we will figure out the rest as the Lord leads. Our prayers, your prayers are being answered. Thank you for praying. Praise the Lord!
Thank you Jesus for the hope we have in you and that I can see in my life. And please bless my faithful husband, Steve! Lord willing, I am going to get well! :JJ
Psalm 20:7 (NIV)
7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
Finally the haze of a medical setback has lifted for me and I can make my food in regular clothing! And that is a bonus for fans of the Do It Sick Chef! Sweats have been replaced by a flannel shirt and jeans. Woot! Woot!
First and the best of the bunch are tips for making salad for one or more 1) meals or 2) people, conserving energy and resources as you go.
Next up are subjects important to those planning meals while restricted in dietary choices and dealing with a serious illness. Not quite sure how I remained upright for the taping of this one! (See the Six Deer and a Skunk post for the reason!) Check out these simple tips for freezing food portions to help your meal planning when time and energy are lacking:
And third is a quick take on making your own ghee butter. That’s butter without the milk solids for those who must be dairy free for health reasons. It tastes very mild and tends not to burn when used for sautéing too.
To keep closer tabs on upcoming foodie tips from the Do It Sick Chef (yours truly!), “Like” the Facebook page Hope Beyond or Subscribe to my YouTube channel directly. I will do summary blogs periodically here that will be filed under the “Do It Sick Chef” category at the end of this webpage. Future topics will include fabulous 5-ingredient Vitamix soups, kitchen organization & simplification, and more.
Remember that food is fuel, food is medicine, and Lord willing we are going to get well! I will be praying for you Gentle Reader. Take care, JJ
No, this entire blog is not being overcome by a crazy foodie! :J
We all gotta eat and preparing meals can be challenging when recovering from a serious illness. Enter here another strategy to keep myself sane while the yada, yada, yada nightmare over here continues. (Yes, made another visit to my fav Emergency Room last night!) So let’s forget about all that and make some food, eh?
I’ll be adding a few more videos from Vimeo and You Tube to catch up the blog here so please bear with me! You are invited to follow the Do It Sick Chef videos on Facebook at Hope Beyond too.
Or, by following this blog and clicking on the Do It Sick Chef category, you can also keep track of the latest meals, tips, and survival strategies.
In the meantime, my belly is now full and it’s time for a nap. The IV fluids helped last night too, by the way. More testing will be coming regarding the lower right belly ache. Thankfully it’s not from the fabulous lettuce wraps created above . . .
The first video of my Do It Sick Chef series is now available on Vimeo!
In “Let’s make something that resembles lunch,” I literally get out of bed to make real food in a real kitchen that includes: a veggie-n-meat entrée, ghee butter, and roasted turnips. Roasted turnips? Yes, you got that right! Special diets require new and sometimes unusual food choices. Just Julie will show you not only how to make these dishes but how to prepare the food saving money, time and energy.
Future videos that are already in the works will cover the topics of freezing foods for easier meal planning, a stand-alone segment on ghee butter, kitchen organization to save energy, and more. You are invited to “Like” my Hope Beyond Facebook page to keep up with future videos and share your meal planning, preparation, sanity tips too.
Take care, Gentle Reader. Lord willing, those of us battling serious illness are going to get well! JJ