In heading out this morning with my small to do list I had already been contemplating “extreme”. A commercial came on the radio, I don’t recall what they were promoting, but the message was about art and having nature to inspire it. Painting, writing, drawing, “allow nature to inspire you” was the message.

Needless to say happenings in the news, on a global level, have been extreme. An industry I’m constantly trying to understand is about to be headed “extreme”….gas prices. And what about this weather, one word-extreme. Nature has a way of not only showing us “extreme” but a way of inspiring us as well.

This message was in draft form and started early in the morning of Friday, well before the wrath of our stormy and “extreme”, Friday evening; right after a week of “extreme” temperatures and heat.

The word extreme came to my minds forefront early in the week with a health diagnosis……..osteoarthritis in my wrist. “Extreme” osteoarthritis. “Narrowing of the 1st CMC joint, associated with subchrondral geode in the base of the first metacarpal and large spurs” osteo

Noticing an odd bump on the side of my thumb I booked an appointment with my doctor in seeking out a request for an X-ray. After chatting with him, he did offer me “something” to help it. “Something” I asked him????? To be honest I had a slight uneasy feeling of exactly whom I was sitting across from; a health care professional or drug dealer. “Perhaps a cortisol shot or “something” to help the pain”. Pain? Heck I wasn’t in a lot of pain, I just had this weird sort of bump that ached a little. I told him that I’d rather wait until we see what we’re dealing with.

X ray was performed but it wasn’t until several weeks later did I call to request the findings.

How do you react with a health diagnosis? 1. Victim, why me? 2. Beat yourself up? Why did I do that? (I think the progression of this was sparked by a slip on the stairs while I was, ya you know, rushing around). 3. Blame? Who are you blaming which takes you back to point “2”. A vicious cycle that goes round and round.

I think it’s perfectly healthy to go through each and every one of these phases but as with many things in life, it’s when you stay stuck in any one of them.

A short period of time cruising through each phase and I was ready for action! Pass on the cortisol, I heard from my daughter THAT hurts like heck. Pass on the meds, hello, do you know me? Besides I watched my grandmother whom hands were crippled with rheumatoid arthritis, progress to such a concoction of meds that stomach cancer progressed rapidly.

“Many drugs used to treat rheumatoid arthritis have potentially serious side effects.”

I grabbed a copy of the X-ray report and am choosing some alternate ways in managing this. In the near future there will be some acupuncture and laser treatment. More immediately, I’ve turned to food and supplements. “Let food be thy medicine” – Hippocrates

As with everything, I encourage you to do your own research. My research has found that through diet and supplements, optimal level, I can get this under control.

My arthritis recovery program and these action steps that I am well aware of but have been “loosey-goosey” over the last couple of months in one area or another:

Optimal hydration: 1 ounce of water for every half pound of body weight. Take your body weight, divide it in half. That amount of weight is the amount of ounces of water (not juice, not coffee, not green or any other kind of tea, not milk) to be consumed daily. As ginger root has great health value, 20 oz of my water has a generous hunk of the root.

Anti-inflammatory diet: no grains/wheat, more veggies and low glycemic. Juicing in the morning and using for my shake in place of water

Stretch: even if just 10 minutes a day, full joint movement done slowly to keep other areas mobile

Supplements: we’re talking optimal levels, each and every single day.

HEALTHPAK: 3x’s a day. This covers my antioxidant, multiminerals, calcium, natural anti-inflammatory

BiOmega: 1 2x a day. Not enough can be said about fish oils. Still a little scared about some news about fish oils and cancer…..latest scoop – STUDY WAS FLAWED

Procosa: 3 x day. glucosamine was a strange word to me until 5 years ago! I have now journeyed through foot surgery (painlessly) and a torn meniscus (unlike the surgery, excruciating). I like my feet, knees and hands and I’ve got a lot of living to do. If not the eight years of heavy lifting as a competitive bodybuilder, I live hard. Gardening and lifting weights are just two the many things in plan to do for another 30 years. Not to mention the fact that my kids have an interest in running now, it would be really great to do running again with them.

White Willow bark: 2x 3 times a day can suppress the progression and onset of osteoarthritis. On the recommendation of a naturopath I use Natures Way. In another week or two, my plan is to gradually cut this back and see how I feel.

Traumeel: although I used this for the foot surgery and torn meniscus recovery I passed on this. It is something I had a very good experience with and may be an option for you.

Now, I am not a doctor, all I can share with you is my experience. And my experience has been, over the last 10 days is that it doesn’t hurt when my feet hit the floor in the morning, the ache in my wrist is minimal, I don’t need a nap in the middle of the afternoon, I can garden all day and get up the next day to do it again.

One last word……..give your doctor a check up! Like any relationship whether it be personal, business or financial, pay attention if your goals are align with each other.talk to doctor

I’ve had the same doctor for 30 years. He has been fabulous, but I am noticing that his focus has changed. He now, and rightly so due to the sheer numbers in aging population, spends most of his time accommodating seniors in retirement and nursing homes. I had wondered when he suggested “something” or a cortisol shot, if he recognized who he was sitting in front of.

No need dump your doctor but know that there are many more options out there. Chiropractors, naturopaths, osteopaths, even an experienced connected to a network health coach are many good choices to add to your health supporting team

Live well, live long.

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