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July 14, 2018

Comparison is a Thief!

I heard this quote today on the radio during an interview... Comparison is a thief of joy. It hit me like a ton of bricks! How true a statement! We as people, and especially women, spend much time comparing. We compare our looks, our weight, our marriages, our finances, our children, our vehicles, homes and vacations...our lives in general! 
Comparing is not a good thing! When we compare, we become discontent with ourselves and our lives. Like the box above implies, what we are comparing ourselves to may have taken someone else years or tons of work to obtain. We also have no idea what they may have went through to become who they are or what they have accomplished. A marriage in the first year or two is much different than the one 30 years later that has been tested, tried and endured the give and take and much forgiving of the other's faults to remain in tact. 
Essentially, living in comparison mode, makes you constantly think the grass is greener on the other side of the fence (often it's greener because of the septic drain!) and creates unhappiness with self. Instead, remember the above box and that God loved you enough to send His Son, Jesus to die on a cross for you! Jesus loved you enough to do it! Remember that in Psalms 139:14 it says I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:... So take heart and be content, make changes where you can and accept what cannot be changed so that you may have joy within.

July 11, 2018

Learning About Food Allergies & Sensitivities

A little over two months ago, I did a food allergy/sensitivity test. Actually, back in Nov. of 2017 I did an Ige food allergy test. It tested for 26 foods. Only one thing came back positive and apparently was a false positive because when eating tomatoes I have never had any reaction and in my second testing it was negative though on the verge of a mild sensitivity. Ige allergy testing is a blood test that checks for immediate reactions to certain foods or other substances like seasonal allergies or pet dander, etc. That's what allergy generally refers to; an immediate reaction or reaction within a short time frame. Breaking out from exposure to poison ivy is an Ige reaction. Watery eyes from cats or dogs is another. Stomach pain, diarrhea, swelling or rash is also common if you are allergic to certain foods, such as seafood. These are all Ige reactions. Anaphylactic shock is the most severe Ige reaction.

Igg blood testing is a test that checks reactions over a period of 3-5 days. These would not be allergic reactions but sensitivity or intolerance reactions. Symptoms of intolerance or sensitivity to a food might include sinus drainage, excess gas and bloating, brain fog, low energy, stomach pain, constipation &/or diarrhea, arthritis, insomnia, hyperactivity, aggressiveness & disobedience in children or a host of other symptoms. Igg testing usually covers many more foods, spices & additives than Ige tests check. 

I tested positive for several things out of 96. These tests results range from a 1 to 3 in severity. 1 being mild to 3 being strong. For me eggs were my worst sensitivity. Egg whites being a 3 and egg yolks being a 2! Cow's milk was a 2 along with cheddar cheese & mozzarella cheese. However, cottage cheese & yogurt were only a 1! It's all about the processing! The only other 2 was for oats.  My doctor explained that over exposure to any food or any substance really, has the potential to cause an allergy or sensitivity to develop. This is what I believe happened to me for the most part. In trying to steer clear of gluten (which I don't have even a sensitivity to by the way) I was using oats and oat flour to substitute. I also ate eggs often. My normal breakfast routine for quite some time had been a soft boiled egg and a 1/2 cup of vanilla yogurt or a cup of oatmeal. All three of these showed up in sensitivity! I also enjoy having breakfast type foods for supper which means eggs more often. Also, many, many, many foods have eggs as an ingredient...from baked goods to mayonnaise! The foods that showed up as a sensitivity-1 for me are...asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale, green olives, almonds, chia seed, banana, watermelon, malt, black pepper, oregano, & tarragon. Dr. said he had only had two other people ever test positive for black pepper. I currently use white pepper! However, hard to completely prevent using due to restaurants or eating at friends and family. This just goes to show that it matters not at all how healthy a food is supposed to statistically be if you are intolerant to it! 
In my heavy research of food sensitivity, I discovered that most often sensitivities begin because of leaky gut or poor gut health. Nearly every autoimmune disorder can be cleared up completely or made better by fixing the digestive system! One thing that leads to leaky gut is Vitamin D deficiency, along with poor thyroid function and low liver function (low liver function may lead to the vitamin D problem!). All of these go hand in hand. In fact, the gut is the second brain of the body. If it isn't working correctly, the other systems will not work correctly either. BTW, I do not believe the Vitamin D deficiency problem in this country is from lack of milk but lack of sunshine! People spend way more time indoors than out than they did 30 years ago. Technology means more sitting around playing on a computer, gaming system, phone or just watching tv than a generation ago participated in. 

I am working on a theory and will let you know the outcome as I gain more knowledge about this. I tested sensitive-1 for several vegetables. Most of these vegetables are the "gassy" veggies. When you have a thyroid problem, you are not to eat those veggies raw at all or often even cooked. As regular readers of this blog know, I was diagnosed with Hashimotos thyroid disorder last November. I just wonder if I tested positive for those vegetables because I have a thyroid issue. In another month I will retest for the thyroid antibodies to see if we've made any headway on correcting the Hashimotos. I will report any findings. I had already made headway in this area just by starting vitamin D. Now that I am on a natural thyroid supplement, I hope to completely rid myself of the disorder. 

Now, to report on quitting harmful foods to my body. Cravings were not hardly an issue at all which totally surprised me. I really do enjoy eggs! Dr. was hoping it would eliminate my joint pain completely but has not so far...but it IS better! The best part of it is that I most definitely have more energy on a regular basis and just feel better overall. I was really struggling for some time with energy crashing between 1-2:30 almost every day. That isn't an issue anymore unless I've really been active working on a something or didn't get a good nights sleep. I seem to be sleeping better, too! Now if only I could get the pain and tingling to stop in my neck, shoulder and arm from the bulging c5&6 I might feel like a new woman! I also would love to stop gaining weight even when I watch what I eat. 

I know this was a very long post but I wanted to give an up date on my health and hope to help others in theirs! Do not be so quick to poo poo the idea of food allergies and sensitivities. I believe with all my heart it is MUCH more common than people realize!

June 24, 2018

Life is a Circus

Comparing Circus Performers with Real Life

I. Clowns - they are fake - they hide behind makeup
--Don't be a hypocrite - Matt. 23:27, Luke 12:1, 1 Ptr. 2:1

II. Trapeze Artists - They practice for hours for just a few minutes on stage
--Seek God Continually - 1 Chron. 16:11, Gal. 6:9, 1 Cor. 15:58
--God is the one who perfects us - Ps. 138:8
---Perfect practice make perfect!

III. Jugglers - They can juggle many things at once
***But they only touch one thing at a time in each hand!
--We need to prioritize - God 1st, Husbands 2nd, Kids 3rd, Christian Service 4th 
---Serving is not necessarily putting God first, you can get so busy doing that you neglect spending any real time with God (Mary & Martha story)
--you can also neglect husband, kids & home
- Deut. 6:5, Gen. 2:18, Prov. 14:1

IV. Lion Tamer - Gets in cage with lion but only gets so close
--Be separate from the world - 2 Cor. 6:17, 1 John 2:15

V. Tight Rope Walker - They must walk a straight line high above
---As leaders in church or a leader to your own children & grandchildren we must be good examples - Ps. 101:2-3, Titus 2:7-8
--The tight roper walker also has a safety net below them
---God catches us & holds us - Ps. 54:4, Is. 41:10

VI. Ringmaster - They represent the pastor & his staff
-They call the plays or what's coming - Heb. 13:17, Jer. 3:15

VII. Cleaner of the Circus - They are behind the scenes, not in the spotlight
--Not all jobs are glamorous or receive recognition but they are still important 
- 1 Cor. 10:31, Col. 3:17, Col. 3:23-24

June 20, 2018

How Does Body Temperature Effect Health?

We all know that the average normal body temperature of humans is 98.6. However, in recent years it is now considered normal if anywhere from 98.6-99.8. 

When a person runs even a low grade temperature, they are considered contagious, sick and fighting infection somewhere in their bodies. Fevers are God's design to help heat up and kill off bacteria and viruses. 

What happens when a person begins having a below normal body temperature? 
I recently discovered this to be the case in myself. My average basal body temperature was 97.5! For years I have struggled with being cold. Feeling cold most of the time even to touch my arms, feet and nose. I have never liked winter time and being cold because when I am cold, my muscles stiffen up and then my joints and body hurt and ache. As I have aged, I figured that I just had poor circulation and that was due mostly from age and lack of exercise. A month ago, while visiting a chiropractor that specializes in natural path internal medicine, we discovered my low body temp. He recommended natural thyroid medicine because low body temperature is a sure sign of a thyroid problem. (BTW, in Nov. 2017 I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's - a thyroid autoimmune disorder. Dr. has told me to stop saying I have that because we are on the road to fixing it) After a month of medicine, I have more energy and my average body temp is now 98.3! I rarely feel cold and shiver anymore! 

Now that I have learned of low body temps and the symptoms and health issues associated with it and the thyroid, I can look back to the age of 34 and the symptoms I began having, and realize that I have been unhealthy and chronically ill for many years. I am now 51. I was just unaware! I knew I didn't feel right. I knew I struggled with issues but had no idea it boiled down to fixing one main thing in my body. You can have symptoms before having anything show up in lab tests. - possibly for years! I chalked it up to aging quicker than normal because I had such trauma to my body when I was in the car/train collision. Along with my thyroid medicine, I am also taking a liquid iodine daily. This is supposed to help shrink the uterine and breast fibroids that also began at age 34 - I was unaware of this back then too! 

Here are some facts and symptoms about Low Body Temp ...
A low body temperature is more than enough to explain many health problems, such as: Fatigue, headaches, migraines, PMS, easy weight gain, depression, irritability, fluid retention, anxiety and panic attacks, hair loss, poor memory, poor concentration, low sex drive, unhealthy nails, dry skin and hair, cold intolerance, heat intolerance, low motivation, low ambition, insomnia, allergies, acne, carpal tunnel syndrome, asthma, odd swallowing sensations, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, muscle and joint aches, slow healing, sweating abnormalities, Raynaud's Phenomenon, itchiness, irregular periods, easy bruising, ringing of the ears, flushing, bad breath, dry eyes/blurred vision, and more.

This does not mean that if you have one or many of the above symptoms you automatically have low body temp and a thyroid issue, but it is something to keep in mind. BTW... a one time low body temp is not the same thing. To find out if you have a below average body temperature you need to have an accurate working oral thermometer and take your temp first thing in the morning for five mornings in a row. Take it before rising from bed and before drinking anything! Keep the thermometer and a piece of paper to keep track next to the bed where you can reach with little movement. After the five days add all temps together and divide by 5. This will be your average temp. If it is below 98.0 then you are experiencing low body temperature and the good news is it can be fixed!  Ask your doctor about some lab work to test your thyroid function including antibodies. Ask for Armor Thyroid or one of the generic natural thyroid medicines. 

It remains to be seen if the thyroid medicine will help with my antibodies (Hashimoto's) or the iodine with the fibroids but I will keep you posted. I will say that my monthly period was lighter than usual for the last one and that was after being on the two supplements for only a couple weeks! It has been heavy for 7-10 days for about ten years! 

June 10, 2018

Being Peculiar

The word peculiar in the Bible doesn't mean what most think it means. It does not mean strange or different. It is often taught that we should look and act different from non-Christians because we are to be a peculiar people. I DO think we should look and act different than the world but not to be peculiar. We are to come out from among them and be separate. Peculiar means to specially and singly belong to another. 
I believe completely that when a couple enters into marriage they should become peculiar to one another! They should belong SPECIALLY and SINGLY to one another for the rest of their lives. That doesn't mean there can be no other friendships or family or work relationships but they should feel that my husband or my wife belongs to me. No one else gets to have the same relationship with them that I do. Hence the phrase "my". Seeing couples who have stayed happily married well into their old age makes a beautiful picture. 
Likewise, the Bible says that God wants us to be peculiar unto Him.
God says He is a jealous God. He doesn't want us to have someone or something more important to us than Him. He wants special and single ownership of us. Just as a husband and wife want single ownership of one another and when they feel that is threatened at all they become jealous; God also becomes jealous when His ownership is threatened. We were bought with a price...the precious blood of Jesus. God has every right to expect that we belong singly to Him. 

May 30, 2018

It's A Dog's Life!

The other day I wasn't feeling very well, and I was laying around on the couch, when I looked over at my two dogs at the other end of the couch. They were laying on their blanket that was laying on the quilted pet cover to keep the hair and doggie smell off the couch. I thought to myself, sometimes it would be nice to be a dog. It really is a good life if you have good owners. 
Then I realized, I sorta DO have a dog's life. lol I mean at times when I'm not feeling well, my hubby takes good care of me and caters to me. I lay around on the couch with my blanket and pillow. He will bring me food and drinks if I want them
and he will even rub my belly with his warm hands to make me feel better. (The warmth from his hands often helps my nausea -- we discovered this when I was pregnant with my first child!) So, see, I have a dog's life sometimes! lol 

How about you?! Do you have it pretty good at times? Just a little thought provoker to help you realize some possible blessings in your life! Maybe tomorrow I will bake my hubby something special! 

ps---these pics are not my dogs!

May 26, 2018

Unrealized Blessings

I saw a video on Facebook this week that reminded us that sometimes we think bad or frustrating things are happening to us; when in reality those things are really God looking after us. 

When we have little delays in our day or the car doesn't start or we have a dropped call from someone or the restaurant gets the order wrong, what actually may have happened was God providing His loving hand of care and protection. I believe that if we could see the spiritual realm of warfare going on around us, just to keep our lives going the way God plans or even the way we pray, we'd be astonished! In the Bible there is a story told about a man being confronted by an angel and the angel tells him that he was sent to help as soon as the man had prayed and asked for help but that he was hindered for a few days by Satan. In other words, the guardian angel that God sent to help with the man's problem was doing battle with Satan and his devils which kept the angel from getting there right away. 
So, when those maddening, frustrating and bad things happen, don't get upset with God and point an accusing finger at Him. First, take a deep breath and do a self evaluation check to see if it is even remotely possible that you have sin in your life that could be bringing on the chastisement of God. If not, then remember, you may be running late or the car may not start right away because God is keeping you from an accident. Sometimes God is just molding and shaping and strengthening areas in us that needs it. You know patience is most often a learned trait! So is not being easily angered! 

Just some food for thought!