Thanks to a recent conversation with a friend, I had an epiphany about my experience with this neurological condition. I realized that I have been spending far too much time thinking about the symptoms I experience; wanting not to experience them.
Thank you so much to Jimmy, who reads the blogs I post, for providing a link to an important article on the benefits of nutraceuticals in treating PD. It was published in the September 2016 edition of NeuroMolecular Medicine and contains a lot of medical terminology, but it’s well worth the read.
The purpose of this blog post is to set the record straight … for me! You see, I was raised to understand life in certain ways and this understanding led me to develop a whole raft of detrimental beliefs, which have caused me considerable suffering and are at the root of the neurological condition I’m experiencing. I was also raised in accordance with strict rules and expectations, much of which was based on this understanding, and failure to follow these rules and meet these expectations was often dealt with in quite a harsh way, causing considerable emotional pain, much of which was never resolved.
Quite often I find myself experiencing a lot of tension. I might be sitting at the computer, watching television, eating, walking, driving or even just sitting in my chair enjoying the view of the lake. I can feel the tension in my neck and back. My arms and shoulders are all tensed up. Quite often my arms will be trembling. I’m typically not thinking about anything in particular.
Early in 1993, I was midway through my karate training on my way to earning a black belt. As much as I loved the training, my body was a mess. Every one of my joints was in pain and a back injury I sustained in 1986 doing yard work had flared up on me. I had reached the point where I had to do something or I was going to have to put my training on hold.
Convincing people to eat a more healthy diet is a considerable challenge. Healthy eating takes willpower. It’s not easy to resist the temptation of a piece of chocolate or a burger loaded with bacon, cheese and ketchup. Nor is it always easy to take the time to prepare and cook nutritious foods when you can reach in the cupboard or pick up the phone and have something on the table in short order and with little effort. However, knowing that a healthy diet is key to having a healthy immune system can inspire us to make better choices at meal time.
Our immune system is vital to our health. In fact, the state of our health is pretty much entirely dependent on the state of our immune system (IS). If our IS is in good working order, it’s almost impossible for us to get sick.
According to The Healing Code, written by Alex Lloyd and Ben Johnson, only one thing compromises our IS, and that is stress. Stress comes primarily in four forms: first, an unhealthy diet; second, day to day stress; third, unresolved emotional pain; and, four, physical trauma to the body. If the stress is mild or short-term, generally our IS can handle. The problem is that we’re overloading our immune system with all forms of stress.
Given that 80% of our IS is situated in our gastrointestinal tract, the single most important thing we can do for it is to eat healthy foods. It’s the surest way to keep from getting colds, flus and even cancer. Unfortunately, the lure of tasty, unhealthy stuff is quite often too irresistible and so we opt for foods and snacks that aren’t good for us.
The second important thing we can do for our IS is to feel good about ourselves. When we feel good about ourselves we make better food choices and we are generally much happier…we are not so affected by day to day stress. A happy mind helps keep our body’s pH level in the 7.0 to 7.4 range which promotes a healthy IS.
Changing the way we eat begins with awareness. It is really important to know about the effects of all the food we consume. Yes, everyone knows that eating candies, snack foods and fast foods isn’t exactly going to help you live til 100. But it is also important to be aware of the negative health effects artificial sweeteners (esp. aspartame), sugar, margarine, dairy, pasteurized juices, processed foods and genetically modified foods (esp. corn), because in many cases we’ve been led to believe the exact opposite.
We also need to be aware of the positive effects of fermented foods (like sauerkraut and kefir), which put healthy bacteria into our digestive system, and Vit D (esp. from the sun), which promotes a healthy IS.
Folks, it’s like we’ve been given a choice. We can choose short term ego gratification by stuffing ourselves with tasty, unhealthy foods or we can choose long term health. Because I am in the process of healing Parkinson’s, my choice was made easy for me. I just wish I had this awareness, wisdom and willpower before I got sick, and I wish the same for you.
In recognition of the importance of maintaining a healthy immune system, this month at our karate club–Georgina Family Martial Arts–we’re celebrating Be Kind to Our Immune System and we invite you to celebrate it with us by making healthy food choices.
Honouring your immune system is a wonderful gift you can give yourself! We wish you healthy eating and an awesome day!