Homeopathic Methods

Update (10.23.18): I ended up taking a round of antibiotics because the infection went to my deeper sinuses causing no common sinus infection symptoms, just some pain in my cheek.

After being diagnosed with UC and reaching remission, I’ve been terrified of the moment I may need to take oral antibiotics. Not only do I not want to mess up all of the hard work I’ve done to achieve a happy gut, I’m also not interested in inviting C. Diff into my life.

That said, I’ve always had issues with mosquito bites and sinus infections – I have two deviated septums. It’s shocking that I don’t snore, but my doctor also suggested I likely don’t get sufficient oxygen either – much like someone with sleep apnoea.

This post is about the creature that bit me recently and the bite marks that wouldn’t go away. I’m thinking this was not a mosquito. Maybe some kind of fly?

I’ve always been a fan of not taking medication unless absolutely necessary and that goes for things as basic as tylenol. I don’t like to mask symptoms and I am aware of what antibiotics do to the body.

On the advice of some fellow SCDers, I went ahead and tried a combination of: tea tree oil mixed with manuka honey, oil of oregano, and sovereign silver. It worked. I couldn’t believe it, but it worked. Below are the pictures detailing the many faces of my bites and the ultimate healing. Also, I successfully beat a sinus infection using oil of oregano in my sinus rinse and taking it orally. It took a while, but I skirted taking the oral bactrim despite my doctor saying I needed it.

These are the products I used and will continue to use in the future:

Here are the bite pictures:

*Please forgive any grammar or spelling errors. I am writing this on my cell on my way to the SCD Conference in MA.

Hair Care Review: Living Proof

I’ve recently become obsessed with Living proofB hair products. I have always had long and healthy hair – despite countless color applications and processing. Back in May of 2017, I had to cut my hair short because, I believe, the round of prednisone I was on for two months destroyed it. It could also be related to the IBD, but I lean towards the prednisone because my hair is finally getting better. FYI: it started getting better before I began using this hair care brand, but this has made all the difference for me. And, I am not a hair product person. The most I use is some leave in conditioner.

So far I love the Restore and No Frizz lines. I am going to try out the PhDB line and some of the styling products. Here is a briefB summary of pros and cons thus far followed by a teeny review of the items I have tried thus far.

Cons

  • Pricey. I guess you get what you pay for, right?

Pros

  • I actually see and feel a difference in my hair and no longer hate it.
  • Free shipping and returns online.
  • Available at Ulta and Sephora.
  • Has decent promotions.
  • Can be found on Groupon and other discount sites.

Restore: Shampoo, Conditioner, and Mask Treatment

  • My hair felt like satin using these products. I used in combination with the humidity shield for a week, but I couldn’t bring myself to spend the $$$ on the large bottles of the Shampoo and Conditioner just yet. It’s expensive stuff.

Restore: Repair Leave-In

  • This works really well to detangle and smooth my hair while leaving it soft and manageable.

Restore: Perfecting Spray

  • I actually wanted to reorder this in a larger size, but I accidentally ordered the Repair Leave-In. I love this stuff. It leaves my hair silky without any indication of having used a product (i.e. oily). When I run out of the Leave-In, I’ll stock up on a big one of these.

No Frizz: Humidity Shield

  • I use this as often as I can tolerate because the smell actually bothers me. Or, maybe it’s the smell in combination with how it lingers in the air? Whatever it is, this makes me cough. However, in humid-as-hell Philly, this product does work on my fine hair.

PhD: Dry Shampoo

  • I just started using this and I have to say that it’s the best of the dry shampoos I have tried and I am a big dry shampoo fan. I usually use batisteB brand as a go to.

Maybe my hair was already on the mend on its own, but this brand of hair care products is making that journey significantly more enjoyable.

LEAP Phase 4

I’m now on phase 4 of the LEAP program and I’m feeling pretty good. Here’s my phase 4 list:

  • Turkey 1.8 (10/7)
  • Egg 1.8 (10/2)
  • Tuna 1.8 (10/4)
  • Tomato 1.8 (10/3)
  • String Bean 1.8 (10/6)
  • Cucumber 1.9 (10/8)
  • Grapefruit 1.7 (10/12)
  • Peach 1.7 (10/11)
  • Cheddar 1.1 (10/5)
  • Cottage Cheese 1.5 (10/9 – DCCC)
  • Yogurt 1.5 (10/1)
  • Nuts/Seeds/Oils
  • Sesame 1.7 (10/10 – Tahini)
  • Black Pepper 1.7 (9/30)
  • Cayenne Pepper 1.7 (10/13)
  • Goatb s Milk 1.5 (*SCD*) – Cheddar
  • Cowb s Milk 1.4 (*SCD*) – Cheddar/Yogurt

I’m excited to reintroduce some of my favorites in this phase and phase 5. I get to have honey soon (phase 5), and I’m really hoping it gets to stick around. I do think that this program was money well spent. It’s time consuming and it requires a lot of dedication, but I am happy to be learning more about my body through this experience. I highly recommend this program to anyone trying to sort out causes of inflammation in their own body.

LEAP/MRT Testing Avoid List

I am patiently awaiting my full LEAP/MRT food sensitivity results booklet at the moment. Luckily, I am able to start avoiding the following foods that I’ve tested as highly reactive to:

  • Whey protein
  • Cinnamon
  • Mint
  • Dill
  • Cane Sugar
  • Leek
  • Strawberry
  • Apricot
  • Apple
  • Blueberry
  • Cranberry
  • Cauliflower
  • Carrot
  • Zucchini
  • Asparagus
  • Yellow Squash
  • Sweet Potato
  • Wheat
  • Corn
  • Kamut
  • Tilapia
  • Pork
  • Almond

So, how do I feel about this list? Well, I am overjoyed that bananas, eggs, honey, other nuts, seafood and shellfish, olives, coconut and many veggies are not on it. I feel like perhaps I can eventually get back to being pescetarian (or at least 90%).

What’s odd is that while I know I am likely testing highly reactive to some items that I have daily, there are others that I rarely or never knowingly ingest (pork, kamut, tilapia, sweet potato, leek, cane sugar, & mint). Those items that I have been eating daily are more likely truly “caution” foods that I may be able to rotate into the diet weekly later on, but they’ve built up from my bombarding my gut with them. Those are the carrots, zucchini, asparagus, apples, berries, and almonds. Cauliflower and I have never gotten along, so that wasn’t a shock to see. And, I hate corn.

I took the LEAP blood test on Wednesday of last week (07/26/17). Earlier that morning I had my IBD panels done through my GI doctor. My c-reactive protein (non-cardiac) came back in the normal range (3.1) and my vitamin D is up from 26 to 57 in just 2 months. All of my other test results were in the normal ranges. Such excellent news all around.

Oh, and I’m still doing well with my nicotine experiment and staying true to the specific carbohydrate diet. Life is good today.

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Native Deodorant (Review)

I intend to update this review at a later time with some more thorough opinions, but for the time being…

I’ve been using Native DeodorantB (Coconut Vanilla) for a little over a week now. It’s been pretty hot in Philly. I’ve gone to work. I’ve exercised. I’ve sun-bathed. I’ve sweat a good bit.

It goes on dry and it smells pleasant, but not overwhelming. Sometimes I have had to reapply simply to ensure that I don’t begin to smell. I would say that’s usually halfway or more through the day. I’ve not become sticky or stinky yet, either way.

I used to use Dove’s clinical antiperspirant and switched recently to Degree deodorant. In the past I had tried Tom’s aluminum-free is fresh apricot. It smells delightful, but is is sticky as hell and I couldn’t stand it. The stickiness seemed to never go away, either.

So far, so good. I will continue to use Native for the time being and report back any changes. In the meantime, try it out for yourself and let me know what you think.

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The Restroom Access Act (Ally’s Law)

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If you have never heard of Ally’s Law or The Restroom Access Act, but you have IBD or IBS, then you need to read this brief post. To begin, this act aims to protect the rights of those with IBD/IBS and aid in providing us with a means to suffer less by forcing businesses that have no public restroom to provide a restroom to us in an emergency situation. It began in Illinois through an unfortunate experience had by a 14 year old girl with Crohn’s disease.

Only the following states have this law in place at this time:B Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and Wisconsin. Regardless, I still ordered a set of cards for myself with the hopes that if I should need to use them, someone might show me some compassion. I ordered my cards from ColitisNinja.com – a site that I highly recommend as a source of information and inspiration.

For some more reading, check out these two articles I was able to find on Ally’s Law:

To order your own card(s), check out these sites:

And, if you’re feeling up to it, click here to sign a petition to get this law passed in my state. While there, if you find other petitions related to this law for other states, please post in the comments. If you start your own, share it with me and I will add it to my site.

Update: New York state has been playing around with this bill since January of 2017. There was a petition signed in a similar fashion to PA’s current petition that seems to have played a role in this. As of 6/19/17, the NY bill has been passed by the Senate and returned to assembly.

Lauren’s Hope Medical ID (Review)

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Re:B Peyton Medical ID Bracelet, Item: A628

I’m going to keep this one brief. I ordered the Peyton leather interchangeable bracelet and one of the rose gold stainless steel medical ID tags. It cost me about $60 between the item itself and shipping. I was so excited for this bracelet.

Preface: I used to make jewelry. Nothing special, but I am familiar with product quality and workmanship.

When the bracelet came, I was excited to start wearing it. That excitement quickly turned to disappointment when I discovered that it was nearly impossible to get this thing on and off. It mainly came down to the stiffness of the bracelet portion, the extra space making it awkward, and the lack of care that went into the ease of the design.

Aside from trying for 20 minutes to get this thing on unsuccessfully, it felt like plastic. It also looked rather cheap. With the assistance of my boyfriend, I was able to get the thing on. Only to hate it more.

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I measured my wrist snuggly and I am 7 inches around. The tag is about 1.5 inches. They said they would size it comfortably. It was an entire inch larger than my wrist which made it sit mid-forearm. I don’t find this comfortable.

I’m returning the peyton bracelet (I have to pay shipping) and getting a refund. I’ve since ordered a rose gold, stainless steel, water-safe, cheaper, snugger bracelet component. In the meantime, I’m wearing the tag on my neck since I do enjoy working out and wanted the tag for safety reasons.

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While I was not a fan of this particular item, it doesn’t mean I wouldn’t entertain giving them another shot. Some of their jewelry is really pretty and I think that if you take my review into consideration, it may just make your experience more pleasant.