Thursday, April 05, 2007

On Diet

I have read so many blogs about diet and how it affects our lives that I feel the need to write about what I have learned, first hand, and hope that this knowledge might help someone else.
We have become a society of fast food junkies. Whether we buy it at a take out establishment or in boxes and jars at the super market, we are still depriving ourselves of what we need and eating junk and poison. The worst of it is, the junk is cheap while the good, nutritious foods can be expensive, further encouraging us to mistreat our bodies.
Although I was never the worst offender, I had my moments. That all changed in my 48th year when I was diagnosed with Macular Degeneration, a leading cause of blindness in the elderly. I started young. At the same time, I was also diagnosed with Toxoplasmosis, a parasitic disease that usually only affects the eyes if the immune system is intact. Without a good immune defence, it can wreak havoc. Facing potential blindness, I did a lot of research and discovered that a diet rich in antioxidants could be a strong weapon against that end. Yup, those fruits and veggies.
So I started eating my five servings a day and then some, plus a few supplements. For a time my eyesight continued to deteriorate, but then something exciting happened. It stopped. Now, at almost 65, I see much better than was expected and the vision in my right eye has actually improved a little.
To take this even further, when I was diagnosed with ALS two years ago (symptomatic, three years) I extended my research. This time around I learned about the debilitating effects of chemical additives. When I really started to pay attention to what was in our food and water, I changed my diet once again. Eliminating as many of the preservatives, hormones, heavy metals and dyes as possible and increasing my antioxidant supplements has clearly made a difference. Once again, I am fairing better than was expected.
Not only am I doing better, but it is easier to control the depression that is part of having ALS without having to rely on any drugs, which have their place, but can also be toxic. The old adage "you are what you eat" is closer to the truth than many realize. Attitude is a huge part of how we do and our attitudes need veggies, too.
Good health to all.


Blogger Tammy said...

I'm going to work on that! HUGS

5:04 PM  
Blogger KGMom said...

You are so right about American food choices.
I am pre-diabetic, so have to watch carbs. Once I began counting carbs, I was AMAZED at the carb level of various foods. Cereals, for example. Or yogurt!
You are a great example of the positive effects of a wholesome diet.

7:27 PM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Your experience is very impressive. Way to go!

9:10 PM  
Blogger Laurie said...

Such good information you've passed along here. My dad has macular degeneration and Parkinson's. We've upped his veggie and fruit intake and he takes suppliments for his eyes. Now I need to do some research to see if there's a dietary connection to Parkinson's.

Thanks you so much for this post and I'm very glad you are doing better than expected!

2:42 AM  
Blogger Thailand Gal said...

Well, you know I'm a believer! :)

You are taking antioxidant supplements? I drink Green Tea and get some from that. Maybe I'll buy some supplements.

Thanks for the info. :)



3:44 PM  
Blogger Ginnie said...

A wonderful entry. Thanks, Pam...and you are such a good example for all of us to follow. I truly believe that "we are what we eat".

7:53 PM  
Blogger Cathy said...

Thanks for the nudge, Pam. I really have gotten lazy on the nutrition front. I'm noticing that my night vision is really diminishing and am thinking I better check this out. What supplements do you take for the macular degeneration.

9:38 PM  
Blogger Mama P said...

I am right there with you, Pam. I am back on my Zoloft, but on a smaller dose. I am also switching docs, attempting to eat better, and going to see a nutritionist. Thank you for reminding me of your great success.

10:51 PM  

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