Health Improvement

Over the last couple of weeks I have started to feel better. Seriously better. It is such a relief. I had been very concerned that things were never going to improve. Depression had set in and my anxiety had worsened. Now, with my hemoglobin up to a whopping 125[1], I feel fabulous. I can actually go up stairs without stopping to breathe. I can walk without my legs burning. I am not fatigued.

Don’t get me wrong, life is still not all that and a bag of chips. I still have ulcerative colitis and secondary symptoms. I have rashes and roving joint pain. I am still living in chronic pain. My colon can still cause me to run to the bathroom many times a day. Life would still be better without ulcerative colitis. I am still on my drugs including immune suppressant drugs and an experimental anti-inflammatory.

But ohmygod!!! I feel so much better. Even under a great deal of stress right now, I am still feeling good. I am sleeping a much more normal 8-9 hours rather than 10-12. It makes my life so much easier to deal with feeling so much better. It is so nice not to feel fatigued all the time. For the first time in 6 years since I was diagnosed with colitis, I actually have some hope of remission. Think good thoughts for me.

[1] Normal hemoglobin is 115-160

Greenwash – Part 3

I neglected yesterday to address Day 340 of the “Our Green Year” blog. This entry needs to singled out as a clusterfuck of all that is wrong with this blog. This blog post focuses on using natural remedies for some very serious medical conditions and problems. Even though Craig assures us that he and Layla are not doctors they feel no hesitation in recommending ‘natural’ cures to their readers.

So, let’s begin with the advice dispensing:

If you are feeling down, instead of taking anti-depressants, you can put a couple of drops of lavender oil on your temples. This can temporarily relieve anxieties and help calm you. Having lavender smells in your home or office will also help.

First of all, doctors do not prescribe anti-depressants for those ‘feeling a little bit down.’ Instead they are far more likely to suggest counseling, self-care and making some changes in one’s life to improve mood.1 If someone has severe enough depression that it requires anti-depressants then a little lavender oil on the temples is not going to help. Clearly neither Craig nor Layla or anyone close to them has suffered from depression or they would not write such drivel. As someone who has recently joined the ‘anti-depressant’ club as a result of chronic illness and anxiety I have to say that a little lavender oil would not have done anything for me. I only went on the anti-depressants when my anxiety and depression were almost debilitating. If counseling, self-care and making changes in my life didn’t work why would lavender oil? Moreover, the insinuation that people who are ‘a little bit down’ would take antidepressants is insulting. Mental health is a very complex and serious issue and not one to be taken lightly. Quite frankly, I was insulted by this post and I am sure many others were as well.

Continuing with the ‘mood’ theme:

Another tip for your mood is to buy 100 percent natural flower essences. What are those? Well they are flowers you grow outside with nothing but water and the sun. Flowers are a great way to add nice aromas and balance your mood.

Now everyone likes to get flowers. They smell nice and looking at them may make you feel a little happier especially if they come from someone special. I am at a loss as to what they could do for one’s mood pharmacologically speaking.

This one is great:

If you are having troubles with high blood pressure, try some nice herbal teas or use some dandelion tea.

I think if you have high blood pressure you need to be making dietary and exercise changes and taking medication if it is recommended by your doctor. I am not sure which herbal teas he would be referring to but I think if you drank any tea that had any affect on your blood pressure and you were taking medication, you may lower it to dangerous levels. This piece of advise is dangerous. Please, consult your doctor before you take any herbal remedies to deal with high blood pressure.

More condescension in this little exercept:

If you have trouble with diabetes, asthma or any number of conditions, you can contact a herbalist and see what options are available to you. Make sure you choose someone who has credentials and training with herbs and you should be able to get some very beneficial herbs.

I am sorry but people don’t ‘have trouble with asthma or diabetes’ they have them. End of conversation. Quite frankly as one who has asthma I would not give up my inhalers for any herbal remedy. If I am having an asthma attack I need to fix it, now! People with diabetes risk losing limbs, their sight and kidney function if their disease is not managed. I am not sure what a ‘herbalist’ can do for these conditions but I would bet they are far better treated by a medical doctor.

Craig ends this post stating:

So, unless it is a severe medical issue that only a doctor can help with, we will be using natural remedies for minor things like colds, flus, aches, pains, headaches and more.

Given that he has addressed severe medical issues like depression, diabetes and high blood pressure as diseases that can be treated with natural remedies I wonder what he would consider a serious disease?

1 I am also pretty sure they are not going to recommend lavender oil. Just my thoughts but hey, I am not a doctor.