Thursday, July 26, 2012

Steadfast Heart

Proverbs 14:30a says, "A heart at peace gives life to the body". 

One of the keys to a healthy body is a steadfast heart. 

Peace of heart doesn't come from a life without problems. It depends on the focus of the heart.

"Blessed is the man who fears the Lord...
He will have no fear of bad news;
his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord. 
His heart is secure, he will have no fear...."
-Psalm 112: 7-8

It doesn't say bad news won't come. It says we can have "no fear" of bad news because our hearts are secure, steadfast, trusting in the Lord.

This passage reminds me of the story of Peter walking on the water (Matt. 14:25-33). When Peter was focused on Jesus, he walked on the water! But as soon as Peter looked at the wind and waves, he began to sink. 

Are we "storm-conscious"? Or are we "Jesus-conscious"? 

When we are more conscious of Jesus than we are of our problems, then our hearts will be steadfast, trusting in the Lord.

Lord, please make our hearts steadfast in You, that they may give life to our bodies as well. 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Safe Housekeeping

Trying to keep a safe, non-toxic home environment can be a challenge, I know. 

Personally, these are the products I use and recommend for keeping a healthy house:

My mom and I use baking soda and Heinz white vinegar (other brands may have petroleum based products in them) for all household cleaning needs. 

We also use baking soda for hand soap and dish soap.

For laundry we use Charlie's Soap

A friend recently recommended Karen's Naturals for personal care products. So far I've tried the Organic SCS Jojoba shampoo and have been quite happy with it. This company makes many other products too, which I hope to try soon. =) 

These things cover the basics for us. We've learned to simplify (and save some money too). =)

If you haven't switched to healthy alternatives for everyday products, I encourage you to do so. It's one of the most important ways you can guard your health. All of the "normal" cleaning and personal care products are full of toxins, and some even contain known carcinogens. 

There are more "healthy" brands and products for sale these days, but they aren't always what they claim to be. There's a great post on the Sharing Air blog about "How to Know if a Product is Safe". It has helpful information and good resource links. 

Using safe products is essential for good health. I hope this information will help you succeed with "safe housekeeping."

Question: What healthy products do you like to recommend? 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Made To Heal

One of the most valuable things I've learned in the last few years is that God created our bodies with the ability TO HEAL.

At first that may sound like common sense. After all, we can watch our bodies heal things like cuts and bruises every day. 

Unfortunately, the "modern" medical mindset is very different. Most doctors don't try to find the source of a health problem. They don't try to "heal" the problem. They just prescribe drugs to "manage" the problem or alleviate the symptoms. That's why so many people are sick and getting even sicker.

But when a doctor understands that God designed our bodies with the ability to heal, they have a totally different approach. And they usually have more positive results of people actually getting well.

For those of us with E.I. this is probably the best news we could hear: YOUR BODY CAN HEAL! 

I am continually amazed at the awesome way God has designed the human body! In this toxic world, our bodies are often overwhelmed and can't keep up with the amount of "repairs" that must be done. Yet when we give our bodies a little extra help (see the recent posts about my "Extreme Makeover: Health Edition"), it's incredible how quickly these bodies can respond and how hard they work to heal. 

Healing is a process, and it takes time. But it is possible! Wherever you are today in your health journey, be encouraged. You were made to heal.

Friday, July 6, 2012

"Extreme Makeover: Health Edition" - Part 3

My "Extreme Makeover: Health Edition" has been a gradual process over the last 3 years - involving hard work, commitment, and much prayer. But praise God - the result is that I'm experiencing a health transformation! =)

The first step in my "makeover" was to detox effectively. For step two I had to get rid of the "bugs" and help my body heal from the damage they caused. 

For me, step three involved two valuable therapies:

1) Physical Therapy
I used to think physical therapy was only for people recovering from surgery or an injury. Now I know that it can be helpful for almost anyone.

Chronic illness causes the body to tense up in various places (or all over), like being tied in knots. Often those knots need to be physically "untied" or worked out so the body can function more effectively.

A good physical therapist can work wonders for the body and for overall health! 

I originally went to my physical therapist for help with trouble breathing. She was able to get my diaphragm to relax, then she worked on my abdominal and back muscles. I could breathe so much better after she worked on me! 

She also puts my neck back in alignment without the cracking or popping of traditional chiropractic methods. 

In the beginning I had physical therapy twice a week, then gradually I lessened the frequency. I still have an appointment about once a month, and my body always feel more relaxed and fluid afterwards. 

(One caution is to make sure you get a GOOD referral for a physical therapist. You want someone who will listen to you and understand your level of fragility. 
When I first started, my therapist was extremely careful and didn't push my body past what it could tolerate. Now she's able to really work me over because my body is stronger and can handle it. 
Physical therapy does involve some discomfort, but a good therapist will recognize your tolerance level work within it.)

2) Dynamic Neural Retraining System (DNRS)
I like to call this program "physical therapy for the brain." 

With Environmental Illness, the brain develops an automatic response to triggers such as chemicals, foods, mold, etc. The DNRS program teaches you practical brain exercises to stop the negative automatic response and retrain your brain to have a new automatic response that is healthy.

Next week I'll complete 6 months of this program, and I've seen tremendous improvement! I plan to continue doing the brain exercises until I feel I'm 100% recovered.

And if you have specific questions, please feel free to email me or post a question in the comments.

I was reminded this week of Proverbs 14:23a, which says "All hard work brings a profit". 

Recovering from Environmental Illness definitely requires work and perseverance. But I'm so thankful there are actually helpful treatments we can put our effort into! And we can know that they will bring the "profit" of restored health. Praise God!

I'd love to hear about your "Extreme Makeover" stories. What have you done to experience a health transformation?

Thursday, July 5, 2012

What Do You Think?

This week I decided to redesign the look of my blog. I wanted something that's simple and easy to read and that also communicates hope.

What do you think?

Do you like the new look? Any suggestions?