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Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Three Years After Stent Placement and New Lipid Profile Numbers

DH's last stent placement was three years ago this week.  From that time he has been following Dr. Caldwell Esseltyn's low fat plant based diet program to reverse his heart disease.

Every three to six months we have had his lipid profile to see if the diet is working.  His numbers continue to improve.

Today he had his lipids checked again, and these are his numbers:

Total Cholesterol: 104
Triglycerides:        166
LDL:                        38
HDL                         33

And now he has his glucose checked and it was at 87.

Take a look at his numbers last time:

Total Cholesterol:  157
HDL:                        28
Triglycerides          198
LDL:                        90

In past months his doctor has always gotten on his case for the LDL, but look in the huge drop, it went from 166 to 90.

I will say that he is on 10 mg. of Atorvastin three times a week, but this is a decrease in medication from a daily dose of 40 mg. of Simvastatin, and the pharmacist told him to tell the doctor he doesn't need to take the statins anymore.

He is not on anything else, no adrenaline blockers, or beta blockers.

Want to know what he eats every day?

Breakfast:  1 huge bowl of oatmeal, 15 frozen cherries, and 1/2 grapenuts
Snack:  1 cucumber
Lunch:  1 large potato, refried beans, 1/4 salsa, 2 T sugar free ketchup, and 2 tablespoons of mustard

(okay, I can't get into the mustard, but he has developed a taste for it)

A discussion on potatoes:

People say that russets cause blood sugar problems, and weight gain, but not for DH.  Russets are what he has added to the diet since the last test and look at the numbers!

Since he has added potatoes to his regime, his glucose has gone from 110 to 87.  The numbers don't lie.  He has also lost 10 pounds, so where is the problem with the potato I ask?

The problem is what is added to the potato.  Dr. Neal Barnard has proven that it is the fat added to the potato in the form of butter and sour cream that drives up the blood sugar.  I was once pre-diabetic and I have tested out this theory over and over again testing my blood sugar frequently and as long as I eat the russet with the skins, and stick to one large, not over eating, my blood sugar stays below 125 during digestion, and goes back to the mid 80s two hours after.

Continuing on with what he eats during the day.......

Snack:  Banana, and or apple.

Dinner:  Dinner almost always consists of something really starchy, whatever the paleo low carbers would call taboo: brown rice pasta, another huge potato, or brown rice.

Examples of dinner meals:

Pasta with low or no oil marinara sauce
Pasta with a veg cheese sauce I make out of blended cooked cauliflower, garbanzo beans, and nutritional yeast.
baked yellow potatoes, ketchup, no oil homemade hummus.
Stir fry with no oil added.

Like I said dinner always has something very starchy and he eats as much as he wants, and at a least a couple of veggies in the from of stir-fry salad, cooked veggies, etc.  Then he also has fresh fruit for dessert as sweet as he wants, like pineapple, and as much as he wants.

He also does something else the diet experts would call deplorable, he eats a huge bowl of oatmeal before bedtime.

He has lost 75 pounds and maintained that weight.  The only exercise he does is 10 minutes of strength training three times per week, and puttering around the house.

I have friends and family struggling with life threatening health crisis as I speak now.  This diet works, and I pray for you that you might give it a try because it is an easy way to live and it's does work to reverse conditions that not even medical intervention has been able to do.   We've been at this for three years, and the proof is in the pudding.  He lifted a 26 cubic foot refrigerator into the back of a pickup yesterday and didn't even break a sweat.

Saturday night we walked two blocks to an event in downtown and I couldn't keep up with him.  He had no breathlessness, no sweating, no dizziness, no left arm heaviness and pain.

Three years ago, he couldn't walk to the end of the block.

How many people do you know who have had heart procedures that have gone for three years without heart medications and without having a degradation in their heart health?  I struggle to find one person.

How many people do you know that have diabetes, or have been diagnosed pre-diabetic, as DH had, reverse their diabetes without medical intervention in the form of pills?  I know many, but all of them are people I have only seen on the Internet, and are doing this diet.  I don't know any personally, except for one and he works hard physically, and has changed his diet, but doesn't do a low-fat plant based diet, but he is on a good diet, but let me make this a long sentence and say he does a lot of hard physical labor.  DH does not.

I only want to bring this up because it has been three years now, and DH has now become one of Dr. Esselstyn's hundreds of statistics that have supported the studies that a low-fat plant based diet reverses heart disease, and if your doctor is saying there isn't anymore he can do for you, and you are crippled by your chronic condition, there is hope that there are answers in this diet.  If you are up against a wall, try this diet.  You don't go hungry, you can eat how much you want (if your a guy), and when you want, and still heal the chronic condition.

All you need is education to learn how to prepare the foods, and setting it as a priority in your lives.

DH is a busy man, works for corporate America, eats out at restaurants because his business requires it, but he has learned how to bring foods to work that keep him going through the day, and he has learned how to order only from the menu what he can eat.  If he can do it, you can to.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

My Method for Converting an Episode of Supraventricular Tachycardia

I have been a supraventricular tachycardia (SVT) sufferer for three years.  I have celiac disease and my episodes tend to happen on the heals of being glutened.

The first few episodes I had of SVT lasted for a very long time, and one episode had to be arrested with adenosine by paramedics, but I have since been able to convert my heart back into a normal rhythm by doing the following.

1.  Drink one big glass of cold water.
2.  Lie down or sit down (if you don't have a place to lie down).  I have converted before during sitting, but lying down is much more comforting.
3.  Then I take deep slow breaths while I think "slow down your heart rate and the heart will convert."

The idea behind this is that if I can get my heart rate down to about 110 beats per minute, my heart will find it's naturally slow path way and convert back to it.

I have had doctors tell me to do vasal vagal maneuvers to convert my SVT into a normal heart rhythm, but when I do them and they don't work, I get panicky and my heart rate shoots up even higher and then adrenaline feeds the the process and prolongs it.

I believe that all of my SVT's are caused by my vasal vagal nerve.  Most of the time, I am either on my period, which I am today, and did have an SVT episode today, or when I have been glutened, which I was over the weekend, or when my stomach ulcer is flaring.

The uterus, the stomach, and the heart are all linked to the vasal vagal nerve and the heart can be affected by an inflamed and irritated uterus or stomach.

The idea by the calm slow breathing is to calm down the vasal vagal nerve.  The vasal vagal nerve is also very affected by thought, and that is why some people faint when they see blood, or have other anxious moments.

The controlling of thoughts is very effective in treating SVT, in my opinion.  It is very effective to think of that vasal vagal nerve as the culprit, like a three year old that is having a temper tantrum.

Doing what you can to calm that nerve seems to go a long way to not only converting an SVT, but addressing anxiety and anxious moments in general, and visualizing your thoughts calming down that nerve can pull you out of a panic attack and SVT.

Now this is just my opinion.  I am not a doctor, but I have talked to six doctors about my SVT.  All of them have had ideas of how to convert, but the only person who was successful in helping me to understand what to do was a grocery store nurse in an Urgent Care satellite whose sweetness and calm nature was able to help me convert on my second SVT.

I have just done a lot of studying, and 100% of the time I've been able to convert since I started to visualize my vagus nerve.

Another important factor is to make sure you don't bend at the waist ever.  Today I did it, and whammo, I felt the thump in my chest, and the bunny kicking really hard, really fast in my chest after the thump.  I knew what I had done to cause it.

I have had over a dozen SVTs in my life and nine of them have been caused by bending at the waist.  Another was caused by a moment of intense anger, another by a near car accident, and another by eating past my stomach's capacity.

If you have SVT, you might get checked for a hiatal hernia.  If I had to make a guess, I would not have SVT issues without my hernia.

I hope this helps.  There is a lot of complicated SVT information out there, and I hope that I am able to offer simple relief, and calm, happy thoughts for those who suffer from this condition as I do.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Cholesterol Numbers Update - MEDICATION FREE

Today DH and I had our semi-annual date to Walgreen's to have our cholesterol tested......

DH had not taken his statins, or any other heart medications for four months.  Here are his totals....

157 total
198 triglycerides
90   LDL
28   HDL  If you don't have that much trash to take out, you don't need that big of a truck to carry it out.

Overall, we are very happy with these numbers. When we were in the waiting area waiting for the results, I was setting myself for bad news, like a total of 190, or something.  I was so delighted to see that without the statin drugs he was still close to 150.

A further comment on this, is that he confessed that he ate a huge bowl of oatmeal right before bedtime, which was within the time he was told to fast, so I think this effected the results, especially his high triglycerides level.

I am looking forward to a time when we can get a fully fasting results.  I am sure they would be even better.

I can say that after 2 1/2 years of frequently testing my husband's cholesterol while on and off statins, with and without exercise that Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr., M.D.'s Reverse and Prevent Heart Disease is protective and does work.  We have tested it out under many different scenarios. And you can see how great the results have been for DH overtime.

Below is a spreadsheet that we have kept of our test results.

DH has been under 150 since he started the program while on statins.  This is his second test off of the statins.  The last test, done in August, he was at 149, and although he is at 157 today, I feel confident that at this moment he is still at a very low risk for a heart attack.

All of his heart disease symptoms, i.e. fatigue, ED, sweatiness, sleep apnea have completely reversed.  And people tell him he looks ten years younger than he did two years ago.

Being off of the medications and free of the side effects, I would not baulk if he stayed at 157 the rest of his life.  Plus, whose to say that the little drop of blood on the instant test at Walgreen's is foolproof? Additionally, since he ate late last night, not being fully fasting when he had the test, I would venture to say that made an impact on the results, as well.  In any case, the results are good.

I also bet that a 12 hour fast would have produced more accurate and happier results, but we are happy with these results because these numbers were off of the medications for many months, and with a small tweek here and there with exercise, I think we can get these numbers to the heart attack proof level.

Being medication free means he can exercise because he is now pain free. Being off of the medications means he can now exercise to nudge his numbers just a little bit more.  Until he stopped the statins, he couldn't exercise due to the pain.  While on the statins, he severely tore his gastrocnemius muscle (a large calf muscle) and was on crutches for two months.

The day he stopped his meds was the day he got off of the crutches, and the injury healed quickly afterward. That was also the day his widespread muscle pains stopped.

Now he can run, play basketball, work in the yard, and hasn't complained about pain for two months.

You have to be careful to make sure that pill you are taking for a cure doesn't prevent the cure.  In our case, the statins were making DH sedentary and aging him.

Now pain free, medication free, and still having very nice cholesterol numbers, we are looking forward and not looking back, and more committed to the diet than ever.