Blood Deficient

I saw my acupuncturist last week for some aches and pains. I’ve been on Dr Zhang’s Chinese Herbs for over a year trying to kill the worst of my infections, Babesia. Bab’s is a parasite cousin to Malaria….not a fun visitor by any stretch of the imagination and very hard to kill. Although Bab’s is still around, I’ve had great relief from it and I live an enriched life today.

One of my aches has been a burning stabbing pain in my right elbow and shoulder. In Chinese medicine heat indicates stuck blood. (please know that I don’t pride myself in using correct technical terms…I just try to get the jist of it) Lisa, my acupuncturist, did the little pinch the fingernail tips and thought I was a little blood deficient. That really didn’t come as a surprise. I know that ever since my battle with Hemolytic Anemia last fall, even though I brought my RBC back to normal with food and herbs, I continue to battle fatigue. If you think that I am a boundless 51 yr old filled with energy who accomplishes great feats every day…then I have misled you! I am not. I do get a lot done, but it takes a lot more these days! And I usually don’t post my off days. Learning to live with a positive attitude has meant not always admitting that I feel like a piece of chewed up and spit out meat! But for those of you who visit my blog hoping to get some tips on living with these infectious diseases, I try to be a bit transparent for you.

I respond to acupuncture very quickly. Lisa got my blood flowing. I’ve been in complete menopause (literally means a pause in menses) for a year…well, she got a little flow going! I thought that was a great way for me to know that it was working. It comes as no surprise to me that after my treatment last week, my fatigue is worse. Sometimes in treating things naturally, it gets worse before it gets better.

My symptoms with Bab’s are: fatigue, nervousness, anxiety, crying, muscle pain, nerves jump in my body like the jitters (I can literally feel my nerves twitching or the energy flowing through them…it’s weird), insomnia, nausea, bloatedness….. while I’m at it I might as well blame it for overweight, silliness and sometimes offensive behavior!

Why not? Babesia is a very very wicked disease. I am grateful however that I’ve had so much relief from it and I believe that one day I will be free from it’s grip. Dr Zhang’s site now says that it’s recommended to double the dose of Artemesia and HH. My usual dose lately has just been 1 capsule per day. When it’s active I up the dose to the recommended 3 capsules per day. During this most recent activity, I’ll be upping my dose to 2 caps 3X day. I will probably up it gradually. I hate sudden death!

Here’s what it says on the fact sheet Lisa gave me. “The quality of our blood is a measure of the available nourishments circulating in our body. Blood nourishes our muscles, organs, brain, every part of us. It’s quality depends on the quality of food we eat and our ability to absorb nourishment. In other words it depends on the strength of our Spleen.” In reading about the blood it makes sense that insomnia and difficulty thinking are a problem, and fatigue in the muscles all due to a lack of blood flow. Babesia attacks and kills the red blood cells, thus a lack of blood flow.

I’ll focus my diet again on blood building foods which include, fermented apricots, fresh liver, fermented beets, dark leafy greens braised in stock with a little balsamic vinegar, infused nettle tea, bone marrow in the form of stock, grapes, sardines, figs, and eggs.

When I feel like this I don’t want to fuss much over food, the easier the better. I always try to keep most of these foods on hand and I do try to keep my diet filled with variety. I have a ton of ferments in the frig and an Autumn garden growing dark leafy greens. My fresh pastured chickens always come with livers and hearts and they are scrumptious fresh! Yes, I said chicken livers are scrumptious! Braised in a little lard with some red onion they are great. The fresher the better and be sure to not over cook.

Here’s what I had for lunch yesterday.

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Heat up the stock and add several handfuls of greens per person….they will cook down to nothing. In my mix I’ve got beet greens, spinach and kale.

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I added some fennel root that I cut from the garden and some red onion. A dash of balsamic vinegar and it was so good, I could of eaten an entire plate full.

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I threw in a leftover pastured chicken wing and added fermented beets for a good blood fortifying nutrient dense meal.

The Importance of Vitamin D in Healing

I started to see my health turn around when I began eating lots of Vitamin D rich foods. One of the important elements to healing that Weston A Price found in his research was fat soluble vitamins. Vitamin D is just one of those fat soluble vitamins. It is essential in cell regeneration, and every cell in the body has Vitamin D receptors.(1,2)

So how do we get Vitamin D and more specifically Vitamin D3?

The sun, but only if you have cholesterol in your blood to absorb it.

Raw Dairy!

Lots of Raw Butter!

Cod Liver Oil!

Eel has some of the highest amounts next to Sardines!

Pastured Eggs, more specifically the yolks!

Beef Liver

Tuna

Red Salmon

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We have seen an increase in Cancer, Osteoporosis, Alzheimers, Chron’s Disease and other maladies according to The National Institutes of Health, all due to a deficiency of Vitamin D.(3)  Not only are most Americans deficient in Vitamin D according to Mayo Clinic in 2006, they are also deficient in minerals and elements.

Vitamin D technically is a hormone that signals the gut to absorb calcium. However, it cannot do so without Boron. Boron is an essential trace element that is vital since it activates the intestines to absorb calcium and magnesium.

How do we get Boron? It’s a trace element found in rocks, soil, oceans and plants.

Food Sources of Boron (mg/100g)

Almonds 2.82 Hazelnuts 2.77 Walnuts 1.63 Raisins 4.51 Honey .50 Dates 1.08 Cashews 1.15 Dried Apricots 2.11 Red Kidney Beans 1.40 Lentils .74 Peanut Butter 1.92

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Most Lyme victims have a lot of muscle pain and cramping due to the spirochetes feasting on magnesium in the body. Most doctors always recommend a magnesium supplement to their Lyme patients. However, looking at the data that I’ve reported on, Fat Soluble Vitamin D and Boron foods would be a better choice.

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Why not try to implement these foods into your diet today? Snack on Crispy Nuts, raisins, organic dried fruit and peanut butter. Not too much of the dried fruit if you’re just starting. You don’t want all the sugar that comes with it. Don’t forget your Cod Liver Oil from Dr Ron’s and a table spoon or two of raw butter to start the day.

Photo Credit: Flickr

Resources: 1,2 Jerry Brunetti & Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride 3, Algaecal.com