The Detox Diaries: Unintentionally Crunchy

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Gentle Reader,

I’ll start this with a bit of an explanation: I refer to health enthusiasts as “crunchy people.” I don’t know why. Probably heard it somewhere. This is not a derogatory term, but simply a descriptor.

And now I’m one of them. A little. Cautiously.

It’s not that I’ve never cared about things like eating right and exercising. Fruit and vegetables are yummy. I like to take walks and do stretching routines when I’ve got the energy. Since finding out about my liver issues, however, I have to force myself to be interested in things like green smoothie recipes and good sources of Vitamin A. (The liver likes Vitamin A). And now that I can’t take synthetic pain relievers, I’m about to get a frequent visitor punch-card at the chiropractor. There’s a bottle of St. John’s Wort (to help with anxiety and depression) sitting in my cabinet, though I’m trying to put off taking it until the Cymbalta has worked its way completely out of my body.

I’ve learned that the stomach upsets that have been my companion for the last couple of years are due not only to having my gallbladder removed, but also because the type of liver problems I have cause high blood pressure within the digestive system. This is why I’m either completely uninterested in eating or absolutely starving. No “yeah, I’m kinda hungry.” A way of addressing this is to eat 6-8 small meals throughout the day, thereby keeping the blood pressure constant.

This is not something I want to do. Food and I have a mutual dislike of each other at the moment. It sends me to the porcelain throne more often than I’d like to admit.

Becoming a health nut is overwhelming. I freely admit to possessing a hearty dislike for the arrogance and focus on money so often found in Western medicine, but I also dislike the uncorroborated anecdotes that so much of alternative medicine rests upon. Give me the scientific method and and open mind, darn it. I’m not going to start popping pills to eliminate the excess fat in my liver, but I’m also not going to eat the bark of a sugar maple because someone in some town who’s related to this guy’s friend found it helpful. Sorting through all the options and all the information is a time-consuming and often frustrating task.

In this moment I’m thankful that I don’t have to have all the answers. I don’t have to have a 10-year health-improvement plan, complete with charts and graphs. (I do love a good chart and a good graph). I don’t have to follow any kind of fad diet. I don’t have to exercise for five hours a day. (Lord, have mercy…). What I get to do is take this one day at a time. When I feel overwhelmed, I can step away from the research and play with my dogs. If I want to eat half a cantaloupe for dinner, I can do that. If I want pizza, I can do that, too. I can go for a walk. If I’m not feeling up to that, I can do 10 minutes of stretching.

What I’m saying is that I get to make choices. There’s a lot of power in that.

Even in those choices, however, I think it’s important to remember that my life is not my own. I don’t know when my last breath will be anymore than I knew when my first would be. I don’t know when or how the Lord will bring me Home. I get to make choices and I should take care of myself, but I’m a stranger here. A pilgrim. When my sojourn on this broken earth ceases, I will be ushered into life eternal. Life with no more pain, no more disease and no more debating whether or not to eat that tree bark.

Life with God.

My journey to faith. (15)

To read all the posts in The Detox Diaries series, go here.

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7 thoughts on “The Detox Diaries: Unintentionally Crunchy

  1. Betting the whole “crunchy people” thing comes from the fruits and veggies reference, since raw fruits and veggies are often crunchy when you eat them.

    The flip side of the coin (though I don’t have the same health challenges as you do) is being an older man married to a wife who is trying to keep him (me) alive as long as possible. So she’s become a “food and vitamin Nazi”. The bottles of vitamins and other supplements are lined up in the kitchen pantry for me to partake of each morning. One of my sons has joined in the conspiracy and has me eating bag loads of green veggies and little else for my meals (weekend probations are allowed, however).

    To be fair, their evil plan is working. That, along with visits to the gym four to five (early) mornings a week have finally resulted in some weight loss and increase in energy and stamina.

    My wife shares your distrust of the formal medical profession and the Internet has become both a boon and a curse, since just as much (or more) erroneous information about “natural remedies” exist on the web as valid data.

    Your liver issues have caused you to enter this realm of “getting healthy” prematurely, but trust me, you’d have gotten there sooner or later. You should see the books my wife has me check out at the library for her because she’s also trying to manage the health issues associated with growing older (perimenopause can be so much “fun”).

    As you say, the great equalizer regardless of age and health is all we really have to help us is God.

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    1. Oooo…early mornings at the gym. You have my sincere sympathy.

      As a librarian, the thing that stood out to me in your comment is that you check out books for your wife. Does she not have a card? If not, she should get one. 🙂

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      1. Oh. she has one. But I work an eight-minute walk from the main library. We live much further from the local library in our community, so it’s usually more convenient for me to put a hold on a book and pick it up on my lunch hour. And she reads voraciously.

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  2. I’m taking the zendocrine blend too 🙂 We’ve been on a quest for answers, too, with Andrew’s health. It’s all come down to diet .. and eliminating things that he’s allergic to. I pray you can find answers in God’s provision. xxooxx

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