Friday, February 27, 2015

What is a Salicylate?

Green Bean Girl has been M.I.A....

A little over a week ago, I had a great conversation with my pal Beaker from Team TMR. My symptoms had me in a whirlwind and I was so overwhelmed I wasn't seeing the patterns anymore. The more I learned about food, the less sense any of it made.

Although I have gut issues, and an allergy to candida, sugar did not make me feel nearly as bad as eating an apple or raw vegetables.

Meanwhile, the wheat allergy I had easily managed for years, turned into a 7-10 day horrific event from even the slightest infraction. My stomach would blow up like a balloon covered in painful itchy welts. The pain was so severe, I would alternate covering my stomach with ice packs and peppermint oil.

I also have a confirmed allergy to dairy. It has given me clogged sinuses, mucus, skin rashes and brain fog in the past. But since moving to Texas, everything changed. Different cheeses cause very different reactions. But plain ice cream doesn't have much effect.

Oh, and now when I eat cooked onions, I get boils on my cheeks.

Lovely, huh?

So, when I started breaking out into hives from green beans? Well, I was about ready to give up.

I started really researching Histamine and Histamine rich foods. I began taking a DAO enzyme supplement to help my body get rid of the histamine. I was doing some better...but why did it seem like the supplement only helped with some food reactions and not others.

Cue the beautiful and brilliant Beaker.

She taught me about salicylates.

Essentially, salicylates are natures natural pesticide in fruits and vegetables. And some people are very sensitive to them.

I read many food lists to see what the offenders could be. After becoming aware, I took out some major players in my daily routine.

1)Peppermint Oil and Peppermints

Twice a day I took peppermint oil in capsules and was a peppermint and Altoid junkie. I even used peppermint toothpaste, body and face wash.

2)Licorice Root Digestive Enzyme

Taken with everything I ate.

3)Coconut Oil

Coconut Oil was a huge part of my daily life, as was Peppermint Oil. I used it to coat and cook all my food, as well as lotion and deodorant.

As I continued down the food lists, I noticed that many of the foods that I reacted to that were not high histamine, were high salicylate. And if they were both, high salicylate and high histamine, well, my DAO enzyme just didn't seem to work.

A lot of things are starting to make sense, and I'm hoping now by reducing my salicylate load, my body will not be in constant crisis, and I can start to heal.

A few other key points:

-I was using calcium for migraines. Ditched it when I learned calcium makes mast cells explode.

-I was dependent on high doses of magnesium, which seems to be one of the key elements in healing this type of illness.

-B vitamins and aminos had been a real help to me in the past and came up again as keys to healing.

I'm hoping these few changes will make all the difference. It may take 4-6 weeks to rid my body of the salicylate stores. 

here goes nothin'

Monday, February 16, 2015

How I Immediately Dismissed the MMR/Autism Link

I was visiting my Grandmother and she was reading over the paper as she did every morning. She shouted to me from the other room, “Did you hear this? It says there might be a link between autism and the MMR.”

“Sounds like a bunch of sad angry parents looking for someone to blame.”

I didn't read the article. I didn't even ask her for any details. I completely dismissed it. It was an incredulous idea....a childhood vaccination having anything to do with autism. Why would doctors expose infants and children to such a thing? It couldn't possibly be true.

I went on for years never hearing about it again.

During that time, I was focused on teaching my son. I was involved in his school and talked daily with his teachers, aides and therapists. I continued behavior plans and followed through with expectations at home.

I was focused and never strayed.

I was never in an autism support group; never even heard of one.

I never searched the internet about autism or tried to find other moms online. It  was relatively new and I didn't have time.

I had two little kids who were constantly sick even though they never went to daycare. I was overcome with worry and took them to doctors, who never seemed too concerned and never really helped.

When Tristen was about 9 years old, I received a book for my birthday from my mother-in-law. It talked about kids like him who were chronically ill. The kids described in the book had the same issues my kids did. This was the first time I had some kind of direction how to get my kids healthy.

I took him to a new doctor who tested his blood. He told me how sick he was and that most of the vaccines he had been given had not provided him with immunity. I was shocked that I had done what I was told by our previous doctors, and put him through so much trauma, just to have them not work. This is where I started to question what had been taught to me my whole life.
I started to look back through their baby books and journals.  I started to see where they had been affected by their vaccinations.  My youngest son, Tanner, even had a severe reaction to the DTP where the doctor who finally stabilized him told me he should never have that vaccine again.  The next doctor we saw disagreed and mocked me for my concerns. There were all these red flags never set right with me, but I didn't know what to do about it.  Everything started to come together.

I wanted to continue to learn more about how to heal my son's health issues so I decided to go to my first ever autism conference and meet people who were just like me.

Jenny McCarthy was a keynote speaker that year, and it was the first time I had heard about her since she was on MTV's Singled Out.

I took what I learned about autism and vaccines from lecturing doctors I met in person. And lots and LOTS of books.

I never believed the headline my Grandmother read to me 15 years ago, because it was easier to dismiss. Juggling a 2 year old with autism and a newborn baby while my husband was deployed left no time or energy to go down a rabbit hole of questioning everything I had ever been taught.

Last year I learned about the CDC covering up a link between the MMR vaccine and autism. They knew if the children received that vaccination on time (at 12 moths per the CDC recommendation) there was a dramatic increase in chance of autism. They found it in their own study, and they covered it up.

I'm not saying the MMR caused my son's autism, but it has definitely caused some kid's autism.

It is easy to dismiss something when it seems it can't possibly be true....when deep down you don't want it to be true because it upsets the foundation of what your life has been based on....being responsible and following the rules.

I didn't join in some Jenny McCarthy groupie fan club to gain this opinion.

I didn't have any influence from any autism groups or any other autism mom's.

My thoughts are based on my life experiences with my kids and what makes sense to me from reading package inserts and published medical journal articles.

Don't believe me just because I said so.

Check it out for yourself.

Find out the real facts for yourself.

You don't want a snap judgment to leave you with regrets.