When it was recently suggested that I go see a naturopath a couple months ago, I shrugged it off. I’ve gone this route before and It’s been helpful and I’ve learned a lot from those visits. But in the end I’d slide back into my old ways and some of the underlying issues didn’t seem to get dealt with - such as my lack of energy.
When I picked up this nasty bug from Italy and had to take Flagyl, a drug with warnings that it is possibly carcinogenic, at it’s maximum dosage, it felt like chemotherapy.
In the end it didn’t work and it was suggested that I go back on it again. Even after taking it, a week was needed to recover from it. There was simply no way. This was when I decided to make an appointment with someone who came highly recommended to me.
I made the appointment. The first one lasted for about an hour and a half. It sounds like a lot, but the time passed very quickly. What I liked about this particular naturopath is that he has extensive experience working with addictions and knows a lot about the 12 step programs, a lot of the issues that go with it, as well as HIV.
What we spoke about turned out to be part info-sharing, part guidance, and part counselling. looking at what’s going on in all aspects of my life, not just the physical health.
This was the first time I had this experience. When I go to my regular doctor it’s about the meds, and sometimes we talk about other stuff. The focus is really on medication and monitoring.
Because of this experience I thought I’d journal a bit about it as I go through this process. This goes without saying, yet needs it anyway: Do not follow any supplements that I do unless you check it out with a qualified naturopath or your physician. There are many potential interactions that can happen. There you go; you were warned.
One of my major issues is depression, and worse, seasonal depression. The first thing we discussed was Vitamin D. I had been taking it, but only a couple thousand milligrams a day, and cheap drug store brands. We switched that to 5000 a day via liquid drops.
Now maybe it’s placebo effect or my imagination but I started to feel a “brightness” that I haven’t felt for a long time. I was told it would take from a week to 10 days to feel a difference. If need be, I can increase it even more, but this was our starting point.
I also spoke about my tendency to isolate with my TV, and lack of structure in my life which in turns leads to anxiety as I feel like I don’t have a handle on a myriad of things I’ve taken on, but not this website.
I have started to create a small foundation of structure for the day. No matter what time I get up, I have my coffee in the living room and read the paper on my laptop. I have my breakfast, shower and take the dog out. I am now ready for work.
Before I’d wake up, grab a coffee and sit and start working. There were no boundaries to what was work time, me time, housecleaning time, relaxing time. With the exception of my weekly Shabbat (beginning Friday evening to Saturday evening) every day was almost the same as the other.
The other piece I’ve added is going to my 12-step meetings everyday, with Fridays off, and sometimes Thursday. I have my conversion class on Thursday night (another imposed structure).
Bit by bit it is coming together.
I thought I’d share what my homework is for the next two weeks. Again, this is tailored to my needs, however if you deal with some generic issues such as lack of structure etc, some of these points may apply to you.
1) Probiotic- HMF Intensive 1 cap per day take at least 2 hours away from antibiotic. Before bed would be best, will give the most benefit but this mean taking your antibiotic with your meals.
2) VItamin D. 5 drops on your hand and lick it off, once a day-doesn't matter when
3) Diet diary, fill out and return to me weekly.
4) work on a daily/weekly structure for your time
5) follow up with the GP who is giving you the antibiotic for blood test-specifically CBC and Liver function tests, also get a copy of any test within the last 6 months
6) consider B12 shots
7) continue with meetings, get up off your chair every hour,
8) drink water - goal is 2 liters a day
9) Be gentle with yourself during this process- you don't have to be perfect- just make some progress.