I am really picky about where I get the fuel for my car because the first time I went to Chevron my car’s engine performance went from 250 miles to 300 miles with that full tank of fuel. Those additional 50+ miles represented a 20% increase in mileage. All I have to do for those additional 50+ miles for a full tank of fuel, is go to Chevron. Works every time like a charm.
Your stomach is your body’s fuel tank. At times, it may be more appropriate to call it your “gas” tank.
The performance of your car AND body depend on what you are putting in the fuel tank. If I were to put a burger and fries, or a Happy Meal, into your car’s fuel tank your car is going to choke up, stop working and you can count on having an expensive invoice from the mechanic. Even a small piece of candy would screw up your engine.
An inappropriate choice for your unique body is about as intelligent an idea as putting a burger and fries into your car’s fuel tank.
The first time I went to Chevron and got 50+ more miles for that full tank of fuel, THAT was my car talking to me. It said, via the mileage gauge, “CHEVRON HAS EXCELLENT FUEL”. Just in case you are wondering – this is not an advert for Chevron nor am I receiving any kickbacks from them. It’s just an excellent and fitting true story to illustrate the point I want you to grasp.
Your body has a voice and it is talking to you all the time. I know that you hear it. I know this because when your nose is running you reach for a Kleenex. When you are thirsty, you drink and when you are hungry, you eat. You also eat when you aren’t hungry, but that is an ENTIRELY different problem. When you have to go to the bathroom you get up and go. You even know when you need to high tail it to the toilet to meet a shorter grace period because of the stomach flu, food poisoning, intestinal diseases, bladder infections or something else. You also hear your body when your thoughts and emotions have run amok and suddenly you can’t ignore that your heart is pounding, hands are sweating, butterflies flying in your tummy or you stop breathing altogether.
Breastfeeding moms have the opportunity to listen to their baby’s body and often quickly recognize how impactful THEIR personal choices are on their breastfeeding newborn. Their choices often times directly impact their baby’s happiness, health and overall well-being. When the mother removes the problem exposure (ingested, inhaled or transdermal) then suddenly the baby’s body is better too. A mother who is eating too much sugar will often create a baby who isn’t sleeping correctly, cries often and is irritable most of the time. Simply put, a mother’s choices may put the baby’s fragile sensitive body in pain. Remove the sugar or other harmful exposures and often within just a few days the baby is happy and balanced. Diaper rash is caused by too much sugar or high acidic foods such as tomatoes, strawberries, citrus or kiwis in the mother’s diet. Removing the irritants in the mother’s body, removes the irritants from being passed along in the breastmilk to the baby. The opposite is also true. When a mother includes healing exposures she passes on those too via the breastmilk to the baby’s body. For example, a baby with eczema may be eradicated when the breastfeeding mother begins taking B-Infantis strain probiotic or another element the baby’s body needs to heal. After childbirth a mother’s choices are still directly impacting her baby and the baby’s body is indicating this to its mother.
Your body is talking to you all the time. I know you hear it. Do you hear only the screams? Or do you also welcome its whispers?
You may not want to listen to your body more than you currently do, but nonetheless are interested in knowing what lifestyle changes would be helpful. Below are some simple easy lifestyle changes your body will significantly benefit from.
♥ Use vinegar and baking soda to clean your house rather than chemical home cleaning alternatives. These are very effective, less expensive, and reduce unnecessary harmful exposures to you, your family and your pets.
♥ Free & Clear laundry detergents are the safest. And while you are at it definitely forgo the unnecessary dryer sheets. Chemical residues remain on everything you launder and suddenly your towels, sheets, washcloths and all your clothes have become chemical exposures and full body transdermal skin patches. Your skin is so effective a method for direct blood injection that pharmaceutical companies now offer skin patches for medicine administration. Take nicotine patches for example. Very small one square inch patches can diffuse medicine for up 24 hours directly into your blood stream. They are only one square inch. Imagine how much unnecessary chemical exposure your body is having to manage from the towels you use to dry your body, the bed linens that surround you at night as well as your clothes. The problem doesn’t just stop at transdermal skin injection, but it expands to include the chemical residues you invariably inhale from the detergents and dryer sheets. If you have ever smoked a cigarette or a joint then you know how extremely effective it is for inhalants to affect your body, mental and emotional states AND your behavior. Chemical residues from laundry detergents and dryer sheets represent entirely unnecessary 24/7 intense exposures for your body to manage and the solution is simple – Free & Clear and no laundry sheets.
♥ Swap out chemical personal care products for natural and organic alternatives.
♥ Any food, herb or internally ingested items that your body is sensitive or allergic too may also cause negative body reactions if your body is transdermally exposed to the same element. This is not a 100% rule by any means, but if you know you are allergic or intolerant to almonds then it is possible that your body is responding negatively to almond oil in lotion, shampoos and other personal care products. Keep that in mind as you choose products. Look carefully at ingredient labels. If you don’t recognize the names then verify what exactly it is because many companies are using elaborate words instead of the names you will easily recognize. For example: Helianthus Annus seed oil is your common sunflower seed oil. I actually started choosing products by consumer friendly companies which indicate ingredient names that I can understand at a glance without needing a biology or Latin dictionary.
♥ You don’t need to change your diet, but at least choose the organic equivalents. Organic and naturally raised produce and animal products mean no unnecessary exposures to herbicides, insecticides, other chemicals nor genetically modified organisms.
Over the last 10 years consumer demand has grown so much for natural and organic options that more competition has increased available options and driven the prices way down. It is a great time to be making the switch and your budget is unlikely to suffer.
Your Body has a Voice
If you wish to know how to be more available to hear your body’s voice and what it is sharing with you, then keep reading.
♥ Body function and dysfunction such as blood pressure, heart rate, blood circulation, skin disorders, allergies, sensory problems (taste, hearing, smell, touch), wound healing, body aches and pains, nausea/vomiting, flushing, frequent urination, digestive disturbances, infections, hypoglycemia/hyperglycemia or diabetes, respiratory malfunction, auto-immune disease and illness are all ways your body is talking to you. Even the quality of your sleep and the content of your dreams are direct body communications that provide invaluable information your body wants YOU to know and acknowledge.
♥ Mental clarity, thoughts, emotional stability and behavior are four very important and often neglected forms of body communication.
♥ Abnormal body discharge of any kind is an undeniable sign your body is providing to indicate a problem. All body products are forms of material communication. Sweat, sinus, ear, menstrual blood, vaginal and sperm discharge are some body products.
Your skin is the body’s largest organ. An average size healthy adult (not overweight) carries 8 pounds of skin. Lesions, wounds, ulcers, rashes, blisters, scales or oozing liquids are visible body communication. These may indicate problems inside the body or it may be revealing inappropriate or harmful external exposures.
Urine and stool are end digestive and body “waste” products, but these are the living proof and story of your digestive process from entry to exit. It shares with you information regarding stomach acid, bile flow, enzymes, internal bacterial/fungal/parasitic environments, digestive integrity or not, body hydration and more. It shares this information via pain, discomfort, frequency, color, volume, form and consistency, time it takes from entry to exit, evacuation frequency and other specifics. End products tell you the whole story without missing a single detail. The problem, is if you refuse to look at what is coming out of your body. Not looking at what comes out of your body is akin to a factory product manager refusing to look at the final product off his assembly line. Or a surgeon refusing to verify his surgical work. Or an architect refusing to look at the building once constructed. Look at the end products coming out of your body. These hold invaluable information which often lead to the solution. Healthy people need to pay attention to what comes out of their body just as much as someone with problems. Knowing what was coming out of my body when I was healthy enabled me to know where my goal was once my body became diseased. Knowing what to look for became the barometer for if and when I was on the right track or if I was off course.
Get past the phobia of looking at your body’s end products. These have the potential to offer you tips and clues for a more complete health recovery. They are crucial and essential.
♥ A person’s body odor will change with just about any variable. Diet has a great influence on how a person’s body smells, as does body chemistry and hormones. Anything happening inside or outside of your body can influence your body odor. Even falling in love.
I was surprised to realize that eating too much poultry changed my body smell. I am not a meat eater and only ever eat poultry simply because my muscles become too weak if I don’t have some poultry. At one point I was eating it every day for many weeks. I decided to stop eating so much and sometime later I noticed my body smelled different, it was so subtle that no one else noticed, but I did. I try to eat it regularly enough that my muscles aren’t weak, but not so much that my body smells differently.
♥ Sleep quality and dream content are ways your body shares what is happening. There are vast amounts of information in what happens when you sleep. Your thoughts, emotions, body function, food choices and exposures directly influence sleep quality and dream content. Did you know a food intolerance or toxicity can be the cause of repetitive dreams, nightmares, night terrors or even PTSD?
What is influencing your body?
The better question may be “What isn’t influencing your body?” because everything is effecting it. Food, herbs, supplements, lifestyle choices, environmental exposures at home or work as well as inside and outside be it ingested, inhaled or transdermal exposure, lifestyle choices, activities and hobbies, circadian rhythms, geographic location, weather, seasons, moon cycles, solar activity, electromagnetic fields AND MORE are all significantly influencing your body function, thoughts, emotions and behavior.
In this article I use food to illustrate the points I wish to make, but it is crucial to remember that EVERYTHING is influencing your body. Do NOT discredit the negative impact of anything you feel is the cause of your body problems. Make the needed adjustments to help your body. You are likely to meet professionals or experts that shame or belittle you for identifying what THEY believe to be unlikely causes of body, mental, emotional and behavioral influences. Trust what your body is sharing with you as I feel your body is the most accurate indicator.
Your body is talking 24/7, at times your family and friends hear it better than you do
Loved ones often hear and see our body functions, emotions, mental activity and behaviors more clearly than we do. If you are lucky they will share their observations. Why not use their comments to your advantage rather than reject them in anger and or defensiveness. Sit with what they shared and have a personal think. What did I eat? Where was I? What happened? When did it start? What is different now from yesterday, or two days ago? Zero in on as many possible sources as you can. If it isn’t clear right away then it will become so at some point.
Use information, no matter its source, as a means to zero in on the source AND the solution your body is indicating. The difference between the discomfort and the comfort is the solution.
Myth: “I can eat whatever I want”
The clients I have met who say “I can eat whatever I want” invariably have body symptoms indicating that while they probably CAN eat whatever they want, they probably shouldn’t be if they actually want better body function and health recovery.
Food choices may not be the 100% solution, but I know they are definitely contributing to the problems. One reason you may not recognize food as the culprit is because (unless you are eating a whole foods organic diet and cooking your own meals) you are likely eating the same foods day in and day out. Constant daily exposures can breed continuous ongoing internal problems. The most common ingredients, which also happen to be the most problematic are cow dairy, sugar, wheat, gluten, corn, yeast, eggs and sunflower/safflower/canola oil. A standard total elimination diet with slow reintroduction of one item per 4 day interval, often reveals the source(s) of the problem. Avoid items which prove to be problematic.
SIMPLE THREE STEP ACTION PLAN
I am willing to bet that no one has told you that you already have the needed information to mobilize better health. All you have to do is collect the information you already know. These are the three simple steps.
1. What is HURTING your body and triggering problems? What food, environments, weather, seasons, location(s), personal care products or other cause your body upset. In other words what causes greater discomfort for your body function, thoughts, emotions, behavior and sleep?
2. What is HELPING and improving body comfort and function? What precedes or causes improved body, mental and emotional comfort and function? For example: organic vegetables, salad, juice fasting, castor oil packs, Epsom salts baths, ocean air, body brushing, walking or something else?
3. What exactly HAPPENS when you are exposed to the specific HURTER or the specific HELPER that you have just identified?
Note down what Hurts, Helps and Happens. Keep track in a way that has meaning and makes sense for you. Write it, draw images, create a chart, type it into your computer, tablet or phone or maybe you are more auditory and would do better with a voice recording. Do what feels right, makes sense and is easy for you because you are more likely to keep doing it. Be sure to include new body understanding as it arrives.
For me personally, I need to write things down with my hand. A three column chart helps me see it more clearly. I know I can access additional information if I use my non-dominant hand and I pay close attention to possible information that arrives in my dreams, cravings or repulsions.
What is triggering and Hurting your body is only 50% of the equation.
The other 50% of the solution comes from identifying what is Helping your body.
Avoid what is Hurting and increase what is Helping
You may despise your symptoms and problems, but these problems are your biggest allies for health recovery. When your symptoms and problems decrease and allow greater comfort and function then you are getting CLEAR INFORMATION that you are making “good” decisions. Your body will respond favorably to more personally appropriate choices. Use your symptoms to lead the way.
BE SPECIFIC – Helpers and Hurters
Be specific about what Hurts and Helps
Below are a few very vague examples to illustrate the importance of being specific. Solutions for health recovery are often in the specificity.
Was the food raw or cooked?
What was the temperature (frozen, refrigerated, room temperature or hot)?
When you ate were you on the phone? Music/Quiet? Inside/Outside? With others/Alone?
The time of day?
Were you hungry when you ate or not?
“Caffeine” is too vague. Which forms of caffeine? Coffee, chocolate, black tea, green tea, yerba mate or over-the-counter caffeine are entirely different types of caffeine. Be specific.
“Dairy” is WAY too vague, it is even more vague than saying “caffeine”. Dairy has so many facets it is daunting. Your body responds differently to each form of dairy product.
♥ From what animal is the milk (cow, goat, sheep, horse, buffalo, camel)?
♥ Is the milk raw, colostrum, organic, pasteurized, homogenized, grass fed?
♥ Buttermilk, lactose free, hormone free?
♥ Is the butter cultured or uncultured? From what animal? Salted or sweet?
♥ Is the cheese hard? Soft? Semi-soft? What bacteria and or fungus were a part of fermentation process? What was the fermentation process used? How long did it rest to reach maturity? Country of origin? Is it organic and or grass fed (organic is not grass fed)? What animal(s) milk?
♥ What strains of bacteria were used for the yogurt? What type of milk was used (raw, colostrum, pasteurized, homogenized)? What animal? Was the yogurt cultured before or after pasteurization? Does it contain sugar/colorants/chemicals, thickeners and additives?
♥ All kefir contains YEAST. Kefir is NOT yogurt even though both are short phase cultured dairy products. Different kefirs have different strains of bacteria and fungi (yeast is a fungus). What strains of bacteria and yeast were used? What type of dairy was used? Was it cultured before or after pasteurization? Was it cultured under pressure or not? Under pressure culturing processes create a fizzy carbonated element and at times will cause an alcohol to form. How much and what types of sugar/colorants/chemicals and additives are in the final product?
I know with certainty I cannot have cow dairy, kefir or any dairy that contains sugar or additives of any type. However, plain goat and sheep yogurt, hard goat and sheep cheese are probably what saved my life. Knowing the specificities for my own body in terms of dairy was crucial for my recovery.
A friend of mine knew without a shadow of a doubt that her auto-immune disease triggers were corn, seeds, nuts and sugar. However her body would be triggered for reasons that eluded her. I zeroed in on corn instantly because she said even one corn grit would trigger her body. I felt if her body was so sensitive to crisis states by just a spec of corn that her body was probably also responding negatively to the corn molecules in the animal flesh and animal food products she was eating. Possibly even from chicken or beef broth. I asked if she noticed a difference between grass fed beef and standard cow meat. Her answer was “YES, how on earth do you know?”. At which point I suggested she buy only grass fed cow meat, grass fed dairy and refuse all animal products that had been fed corn during their lifetime. She had to make a lot of calls and do some research, but she did and suddenly she was able to safely eat these foods without incidence and her healthy body function became more predictable. For more information about the “corn” connection you may like the documentary named “King Corn”.
The moral of this story is this. If you have a known allergy to something then it is very important to look back at the food chain.
As I mentioned earlier. If your body is responding to something ingested, you may also be negatively responding to transdermal exposure of the same element. Check ingredient labels and remember that just because it is natural or organic doesn’t mean that YOUR body will NOT have a negative reaction to it.
While any and all chemical ingredients in personal care products should be eliminated, if you still have some exposure AND you are still having problems then give the products a break for a month and see if it makes a difference.
Just enough, not too much
It is confusing at times when an element helps one area, but causes problems somewhere different.
The best illustration is often a story so let me share one with you. Coffee helps my gallbladder and digestion which is crucial for my body to function properly. But it caused skin inflammation, flushing on my face, increased anxiety and caused my auto-immune diseases to flair. With a lot of trial, error and adjustments over some months I came to understand that 1-2 tablespoons of cold brewed organic coffee per day in the morning provided my body the benefits it had to offer without ANY problems or set-backs. Now you may be asking how I manage to make and take 1-2 Tbs of coffee a day? Simple. I cold brew a big batch of organic coffee, strain it, freeze it in small ice cube trays and then put the cubes in freezer bags. Each day I have 1-2 of these frozen perfect sized cubes. I KNOW that if I have more I will have problems. It’s easy, exact and I only have to prepare coffee once every few months. It took some time to figure out, but it was well worth it and has been a crucial component to my health recovery.
If after many attempts it just isn’t possible to reap the benefits of an element without having a set-back, then consider making use of anything related to the simultaneous helper/hurter. Sometimes a different but related nutrient/herb/food can provide the benefit the body needs without causing any problems or set-backs.
BE SPECIFIC – What is Happening?
Be very specific about how your body is responding to what helps and hurts.
A headache is not a headache nor are its causes. What are the specifics of your headaches? A headache from food, deficiencies, herbs, sunlight, lack of sleep, weather patterns, dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, tension, chemical exposures (ingested, inhaled, transdermal), emotional states, humidity, barometric pressure, season or from body imbalances are each often very different headache experiences. The same is true of any other symptom.
Describe in detail the headache. Sit with it and experience it in detail. A description as detailed as this is good – “Pain above left eye that penetrates deep inside my head like an electrical line, can’t think, need to lie down, anger instantly and cry easily, shallow irregular breath, completely incapacitated, legs are weak, lack of smell”
BE SPECIFIC about what is happening. Using medical diagnosis terms is simple to convey a general understanding, but it does nothing for the purpose of finding information that will lead to a solution. Include information about what you know makes it better and what makes it worse.
Worse from – fluorescent lighting, loud noises, wind (weather), chemical fragrances, dry air
Better when – ear plugs, dark room and taking a nap AFTER drinking a big glass of water and eating a baked potato with lots of salt along with a banana or drinking fruit juice.
Joint pain is another common problem so let’s look at it. Is your joint pain every joint? Only right or left side? Only lower or upper body? All the time or only when you move? When you are awake and/or asleep? In certain chairs only? Is it worse at certain times of the day? Before during or after you eat? Are there patterns related to seasons, weather or the moon? Is the pain like shattered glass or is it a dull hum that never goes away? Does it always happen on the weekend or certain days of the week? Is it cyclical or irregular in frequency? Related to certain activities or time spent with certain people? Do you have it after you eat Italian food (gnocchi, eggplant parmesan, tomato sauce and bell peppers are in Italian food – these are nightshade vegetables which are commonly associated with inflammatory conditions that cause discomfort and pain)?
Determining the details is what will cause the mystery to unravel, making the solutions easier to identify. The clarity brings with it ideas and solutions.
LOOK FOR THE PATTERNS
Once you have collected information about what is HURTING, HELPING and HAPPENING then you are ready to start looking for patterns. The patterns reveal the Extra Something(s) you may be missing which will really drive home your healing and move your body towards greater comfort and better function.
Helpers will indicate what other related items are likely to be helpful while the Hurters are likely to indicate what other related items need to be avoided. If you knew that spinach and collards caused your auto-immune disease to flair, then you may need to investigate avoiding all high oxalate foods.
While it may seem that the Helpers and Hurters are not at all related there is often a very interesting dynamic between the two that unveils additional and helpful information. Look for information that fits together AND locate the contradictions. Both of these are invaluable.
If you suffered from gout pain which is a build-up of uric acid in the tissues, and you shared with me that asparagus was helping your body I would find that curious while being exceptionally valuable information. Why? Because asparagus is a very high purine food item and purines are the cause of uric acid build-up in the tissues. However asparagus is a high sulfur AND it has the ability to reduce high ammonia levels in the body. This could signal two different problems that may be interfacing with one another. Just that information alone would give me a good idea of what other questions to ask, where to look and/or viable suggestions to offer.
If you don’t see the patterns, then ask friends, family or loved ones if they do. Just because a person isn’t a specialist doesn’t mean they don’t have your answers! Give people a chance to shine by asking them. People know things you would never imagine they knew.
By all means be willing to pay to see a good professional with lots of knowledge, experience and the ability to listen to what you know about your body. Someone good will be able to help identify patterns and zero in on possible solutions. You could end up with the needed understanding AND solutions quicker rather than spending years of time trying to find the answers on your own.
A good expert WILL LISTEN, HEAR AND USE the information you bring while also knowing that their knowledge is only as good as what the client knows and brings to the table.
Unexpected and Hidden Social Traps to Avoid
It is easy to fall prey to the multitude of hidden social traps.
♥ Media and professionals have valuable information. However much of that information is presented in one-sided blanket statements as if everything was a 100% rule. Neutral and objective information willingly exposes the good, bad and ugly which is essential for you to make personally appropriate choices. I look for and cross check all information to understand cause, effect and the qualities of element. I use multiple and extremely different references to verify for more understanding. Each methodology (examples include allopathic, nutrition, herbal, holistic, TCM, Ayurvedic and more) has crucial but often vastly differing understanding of a same common element.
♥ Media is a fast moving vehicle for trends. Trends may be good for your health and recovery, but some of them may have devastating results for you. Remember when media told you eggs were bad? Eggs will need to be avoided for some, but will be the solution for others. In recent years gluten has become the “devil”. While gluten is the kiss of death for some (me included), it is other people’s solution! Everything has qualities. Qualities will be needed for one, but problematic for another. Allow your body to tell you what is and isn’t appropriate.
♥ Just because it is a healthy organic food doesn’t mean it is good for YOUR body. Here is another story for you. I met a man who had just been diagnosed with bladder cancer. Doctors wanted to remove his bladder and his prostate and he wasn’t too keen on the idea. Before agreeing he looked into all his options and did a lot of research. I met him shortly after he received blood test results for food allergies that showed he was having negative reactions to his home grown organic cucumbers and bell peppers. It never occurred to him something organic, natural and healthy could in fact be a part of the problem. The moral: Your body hasn’t read nor does it agree with media and professional opinion. Your body is responding to and creating reactions and interactions with everything. A healthy organic item may be a problem for YOUR body.
Since we all love a beautiful ending, here is the follow up to his story. He followed a wide spectrum natural very detailed protocol that included Vitamin C drips, IV chelation to remove the heavy metals and environmental toxicity, a 4 day food rotation diet while avoiding all food allergens and intolerances and high intake of dietary supplements for vitamin deficiencies. He did decide to use one modern medical technique proven to have results for bladder cancer because he had that sort of gut instinct inkling that it was a good choice for him to incorporate. He committed and followed through on everything to the last detail, grumbled a lot but held strong for his best chance of recovery. Months later he announced his body was testing cancer free. He still has his bladder and his prostate. Now a couple years later I still run into him and he is still cancer free.
♥ Price does NOT indicate quality. Use your body’s responses to indicate what products work best for your body’s needs.
My final thoughts
I spent a lot of time grumbling about my dysfunctional body until I had the epiphany that my body NEVER got a break EVER. Then I quickly realized my body worked way harder than I ever had or ever would. In fact my body was my most loyal and dedicated companion in my life and always would be. In that moment I came to respect my body’s problems weren’t against me, but it was my body’s way of getting my attention because it needed my help. From that point forward I became my body’s Sherpa and have never looked back.
The action plan is simple. Determine what is HELPING, HURTING and what is HAPPENING. Be Specific. Then look for the PATTERNS. Your body is talking to you all day and all night. When you begin to listen and respond to its calls then better health, recovery and greater comfort follow.
You know every detail of your body’s function and history because you live it 24/7, that makes you the expert of your body. Don’t allow others stature or titles to take away what you know about your body.
Health recovery and solutions often come about when a person realizes they have not even yet begun to investigate all the available choices. Leave no stone unturned, there is always something you haven’t yet discovered or tried yet.
If after reaching the end of this article you decide to do nothing with this information except to begin buying your fuel at Chevron, then I know there is still hope for you. ; )