Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Day 8 - The Joys and Marvels of Modern Medicine!

My wife and I had an early appointment with Tony Horton—we did a P90X session (Kempo)—it was pretty good, but our DVD player had a problem in the middle of our session so we had to quit; although I can’t say I was terribly upset.  Decided to mix things up with breakfast this morning.  Pulled out the Blend Tec and made a morning smoothie.  I know there are a lot of recepies in the Blend Tec box, but I just decided to through some vegetables together.  Put a few carrots, some romaine lettuce, spinach, kale, lemon juice and some distilled water—blender did amazing mixing the concoction together.  Although it was very similar ingredients to the juices we make it was a bit harder to get down (our bodies are not use to all those fibers we lose in the juice.

Today was a pretty hard day for me, and I think the next couple of days will be hard.  I have to this point weaned myself off of all medications except one well 2 actually.  One of the things we have tried off and on over the last few years is some medication for ADD.  I went to the Doctor a number of years ago and I have all the symptoms, so my doctor prescribed me some medication.  I have tried Aderal and I think Ridilan as well as one other more generic one, but the one that seemed to work the very best without many--at least thats what I thought at the time--of the side affects is Vyvanse.  The biggest problem with Vyvanse was the cost—since it is not covered by insurance it would cost about 185.00 per month, but really seemed to help me keep focus.

I didn’t feel “drugged out” or “spaced out” on it, it just let me focus on one thing for longer than a few minutes.  Not only did it help my attention span it also helped my extreme lack of energy I felt during the day and would allow me to stay alert and well focused during the morning hours—I thought I had finally found the answer.  It wasn’t until taking it for about 5 or 6 months straight (4-6 times per week) that I noticed side affects.  It became a little harder to sleep, and then I started to get more headaches and what felt like swelling in my neck as well as some pretty bad nausea issues.

I also noticed that my energy levels began to go back down and found that taking the pill didn’t even help with that anymore.  While I did feel like it still helped with the attention, it definitely made things worse in too many other ways.  I weaned myself off it (mostly) and only used it once and maybe twice a week and actually was completely off it all during law school.  More recently I got back on it because my focus seemed to just be getting worse and worse so I started it initially to be able to work better, but then I was on it pretty much full time.  That is until the symptoms started to come back, but they seemed worse this time--I even think it was contributing to my depression and anxiety.

Again… I weaned off it, and would only take it if I felt like I needed it.  Along with my other symptoms my ADD started getting worse after this and I decided to set up another appointment with my doctor, so to get ready for it and so I could tell him what the medicine was doing I began taking it every day.  I scheduled the appointment about 4 weeks out, but I had already started the cleanse when it was time.  The doctor did give me a different prescription for my ADD but I decided to hold off until after this cleanse to see how I felt.  I did't want to have to rough of a time at the beginning of the cleanse (since I knew it would be bad anyway) and I actually had thought I would get well through the cleanse before completely weaning off.  However; I decided one week in that cold turkey would be the toughest, but--in the end--the quickest and in a weird way the easiest way to go.

I mentioned that I had been taking 2 medications.  One of the medications I was prescribed a long time ago was for Inderal.  I have--for a long time--been victim to panic attacks (not the completely debilitating ones, but ones that would make me shake for no reason.  It would hit at times and then would be consistent--Like if I were to give a talk to a large group or train a large group, or when I first started to travel for work (I was a scared flyer).  The inderal would  make those times bearable, but what I also noticed is it made some of the symptoms of the Vyvanse much less severe.  If I didn't take the inderal with the vyvanse I would get really shaky and if I got to that point it was hard to get over it, so I pretty much took it at least once a day or twice a day while on vyvanse, but I decided to stop that medicine cold turkey as well.  I will have to see how the lack of both affect me for at least the next couple of days--but will also need to see about training groups or speaking to groups of people.

Now don't get me wrong... I do think that this type of medication, as well as many others, do have their place in our society and in some peoples lives, but in todays world it does appear the easy answer when somebody tells you something is wrong is to give them a pill.  I don't ever once remember hearing over the course of 20 years that the food I'm eating may be a problem.  We are raised to not question the authority of those who have the education that is required to get to where they are.  One thing I learned for sure in law school is that those who go to school for a long time--thinking of myself here--do NOT know as much as people think or assume they do.  This may be part of the reason I even questioned my doctor in the first place.  So while I believe medicine should and needs to have a place in our society (some of the benefits for people who suffer serious diseases are amazing) I don't think it should be the very first thing the doctors jump to before looking at what we eat.  I guess "we are what we eat" really may mean something huh.

Lunch: today’s lunch was quick because I needed to help my wife get to a class, I had spinach mixed with chicken cooked in olive oil, lemon juice, basil, oregano and green onions—I am now a huge fan of all these ingredients.  For dinner: I pulled out the Blend Tec for a recipe that I found in their binder.  It was a tortilla soup without the forbidden candida stuff (AKA, the tortilla chips and a few other ingredients).  I ended up putting water, onions, carrots, tomatoes, seasoning, and then mixed it on the soup setting.  It came out puree but extremely hot, I mixed some black beans and some cooked onions and some quinoa in with the mix.  My children were not fans at all—although my 4 year old did seem to eat it OK until my 8 year old called out that he didn’t like it and he thought it was making him sick, then all of a sudden my 4 year old didn’t like it either and it was making him sick too.  Silly children!?!?

Same dessert for late tonight--I'm going to miss these when they are gone--still at least another week until we have to cut all of that good stuff out of diet, but until then we will enjoy! enjoy! enjoy!

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