Archive for September, 2009

30 Things About My Invisible Illness You May Not Know

Do you have an Invisible Illness? Welcome to the club!

Groucho Marx, comedian and actor, once said, “I don’t want to belong to any club that will accept people like me as a member.” The Invisible Illness “club” is like that for me. I was invited – against my will – to this club in the summer of 2006. And then, just like Mr. Marx, decided to withdraw my membership. I now live in near/full remission. [Search for “Simla’s Story” on this blog to find posts that go further into details about my life living with and healing from invisible illnesses.]

I’m posting the following “30 Things” as a contribution to highlight the start of National Chronic Invisible Illness Awareness Week 2009 TODAY, Sept 14, 2009. II Week 09 is hosting a 5-day F*R*E*E Virtual Conference with 20 fantastic speakers who are vibrant, well-versed in the art of living with invisible illness, and there to offer you and/or the ones you care about support and encouragement and entertaining, engaging information. Register and attend this conference by clicking here.

30 Things About My Invisible Illness You May Not Know
by Simla Somturk Wickless of
www.enjoydelicioushealth.com

1. The illness I live with is:
Fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, immunotoxicity, undifferentiated connective tissue disorder, multiple chemical sensitivity (all in remission – 95% of the time)

2. I was diagnosed with it in the year:
2007

3. But I had symptoms since:
2006, and maybe even years earlier on some of the conditions but wasn’t diagnosed properly

4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is:
Change my career (from management consultant to health & nutrition consultant)

5. Most people assume:
That somehow I’m stronger than they are or that my medical conditions must not have been very serious because I was able to get to the point where I now live in full remission. Both are incorrect.

6. The hardest part about mornings are:
Waking up when my body is not ready to wake up – a feeling of utter and painful exhaustion.
Or if I ate gluten the day before: feeling deeply exhausted and having inflamed, painful joints and soft tissue as a result.

7. My favorite medical TV show is:
Grey’s Anatomy, because of the drama, not the medicine.

8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is:
My laptop.

9. The hardest part about nights are:
Used to be the all-over itching caused by my drug-induced liver inflammation and excruciating nerve pain in my legs. Nowadays, occasional nerve sensitivity in my legs, or if my adrenals are off, insomnia.

10. Each day I take __ pills & vitamins.
Down to about 10 from 45+. WOO HOOOO!

11. Regarding alternative treatments I:
Bet my life on them and I won.

12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose:
Invisible. I’m a very private person. This way I get to choose how and where I share information about me.

13. Regarding working and career:
You must love the work you do to be truly healthy. I LOVE my work now. It feeds my health and soul. And I wouldn’t have found it had my illnesses not found me.

14. People would be surprised to know:
That I am thankful to my conditions for the strength of self, renewed life purpose, and revised priorities they brought to me.

15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been:
I don’t have all the freedoms I used to have, if I want to live in full remission, such as eating anything I want.

16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was:
Heal it to where, as long as I manage my triggers well by avoiding or mitigating them, I live pretty much in full remission.

17. The commercials about my illness:
Drive me nuts. Prescription medication should not be advertised on TV.

18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is:
When I couldn’t walk, it was walking.
When I couldn’t read, it was reading.
When I couldn’t think, it was thinking.
Now, living in remission, it’s the ability to eat whatever I want, as I have to be very mindful of certain foods triggering my symptoms. I’m planning on overcoming that too.

19. It was really hard to have to give up:
Cheese and coffee and wheat, as these are some of the foods that trigger my symptoms.
I’ve regained the ability to do almost everything else that matters to me.

20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is:
Blogging! =)

21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would:
I now have those days back and I am grateful for every second.

22. My illness has taught me:
That doctors are fallible, that our medical system is very broken, and that it is not designed to deal effectively with chronic, systemic conditions.
That “alternative” medical approaches are my default choices.
That the body, mind, and spirit are all connected and will all heal given half a chance.
That we are healthy when our world is healthy, and vice versa.
That healing requires you to get to know your body and and its signals, to listen to your intuition, to decide to get your health back and then follow through no matter how hard it gets or how many naysayers there are.
That real, beautiful, delicious food is fantastic medicine.

23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is:
But you look great! (When I was really suffering. Now it’s ok. =)

24. But I love it when people:
Are patient. When I shuffled vs walked, when I couldn’t be social… my family and true friends came through and showed it in their kind patience.

25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is:
“It’s ok to feel bad, but it’s not ok to feel bad about feeling bad.” (from my husband)

26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them:
You are not your illness.

27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is:
How it can be a blessing in disguise and a huge life lesson (or several hundred).

28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was:
When I was bed-bound and couldn’t walk for several months, my husband surprised me by carrying me out to the car he had rented (we don’t own a car) and driving me to the beach so we could roll down the windows and I could get some fresh air and sun on my face.

29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because:
It’s very important to me that those living with an invisible illness know and see from others’ experiences that they CAN live well and even heal fully from a chronic invisible illness.

30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel:
Warm and fuzzy, and happy that you took the time to understand a little better. Thank you.

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September 14, 2009 at 12:04 AM 5 comments

Helloooo, Sugar!

Why do you butter me up, buttercup, just to let me down?

and

Ah sugar, ah honey honey
[You are my candy…]
And you got me wanting you

and

Pour some sugar on me…

All popular lyrics, all probably written by sugar addicts. It’s not hard to imagine: lovesick songwriter, writing the lyrics as she snarfs down a pint of icecream or as he drowns his sorrows with a wine spritzer.

Ok, just having some fun there but – really – you know those sugar cravings? The ones that seem to take over beyond any reason, or hang around on the periphery of your consciousness until you take those fateful steps towards your hidden stash, vending machine, or corner Starbucks? Sugar cravings love to come alive around 3-4pm, right after dinner, or (and?) when you get home from another stressful day at work. Or when you’re bored. Or sad.

It’s not your fault. We’re genetically programmed to crave sugar. Way back when, that probably translated into us raiding bee hives. These days we can bypass the stings and just make do with a chocolate chip cookie… or three.

Sugar cravings are the result of a constellation of factors and they’re very unique to you. No two people, no two bodies are alike. Your life habits, food choices and patterns, emotions, brain chemistry, blood chemistry, stressors, time of day, and nutritional deficiencies all feed into it. Pun intended.

While we tend to associate “sugar cravings” with baked goods, chocolate, and candy, I include artificial sweeteners, alcohol, and pasta, bagels, most cereals, and other refined-carb-heavy foods in there as well. Sugar can wreak havoc on your body, contributing to or directly causing stress, anxiety or depression, energy slumps, yeast infections, autoimmune symptoms, migraines, diabetes, IBS, and a weakened immune system. Sugar feeds cancer and has even been connected to alcoholism. My personal pet peeve regarding sugar is that it saps me of my fabulous natural high when I do choose to have some. Not so sweet.

The good news is that you can rid yourself of sugar cravings in as little as a week. You can learn to deconstruct your cravings, learn about your body’s signals and what they’re telling you, and harness that deep power to your advantage so that you can have uplifting, steady energy throughout the day. No more guilt trips or dreading the scale. No more jittery nerves. No more crashes and burns. No more distracting cravings.

Wouldn’t it be great to no longer be a slave to sugar but just enjoy it when you feel like it, without g-u-i-l-t? The process is fascinating, fun, extremely effective, and deceivingly simple.

If you want to get there, join me on September 17th for my live webinar, Sugar Blues! Click here for details and to sign up. I may not give this webinar again, so join me while you can! It may just change your life.

And if you don’t, don’t say I didn’t try to help you, sugar.

September 10, 2009 at 4:55 PM Leave a comment

SUGAR BLUES! Live Webinar Sept 17, 2009

It’s baaaa-aaack!

In Spring 2009, I hosted a Sugar Blues class and some of you couldn’t make it, and some of you just found out about it and want it now! And there’s a good chance it may be the LAST TIME I do this LIVE.

Well…

This time, I’m presenting it as a WEBINAR so you can again watch and listen no matter where you are!

* * *

Sugar Blues!

Understand and Reduce Your Cravings Once and For All
& Learn How to Have Sugar as Part of a Healthy Lifestyle

Sugar. Tantalizing. Trouble… Or is it?

Join Simla Somturk Wickless, Certified Health Counselor and Nutrition Educator, and founder of Delicious Health, Inc., in this LIVE ONLINE WEBINAR to learn:

  • Shocking facts about sugar and what it does to your body and mind.
  • How you can deconstruct and understand your sugar cravings like never before.
  • The Top 10 steps for reducing sugar cravings for good!
  • How to enjoy sugar as part of a healthy lifestyle.

Do you crave sugar? You’re not alone! Sugar is highly addictive and can wreak havoc on your body in ways you may have never imagined. Yet, there is no warning label! Sugar is a growing part of the American diet, has many different names, and hides in many foods. Join us for the Sugar Blues webinar and learn about the impacts of sugar, the fascinating reasons WHY we crave sugar, and lots of practical ideas to overcome your addiction and enjoy sugar as part of a healthy diet.

Curious? Well you have to be there to find out!

Scroll down to SIGN UP and get your special discount.

Here’s what some past participants have said:

It was a pleasure to participate in the Sugar Blues tele-class. I am pleased to learn that there might be ways to address sugar cravings with activities. Along with that, I also realize that it is one step in the path towards eating right and living well. Thank you for helping me get started!
– Anita P., Entrepreneur & High Level Executive

Thank you the Sugar Blues Teleclass today. You had a good overview of sugar, and what I particularly liked was that you gave 10 concrete examples of craving causes and another 10 steps for dealing with those cravings.  I think it’s great that you take a holistic approach to the topic.  Sugar is very much part of the conversation in our house! I think that’s where resources like yours come in – they help in the lifelong journey of good health. Many thanks.
– Maria Nicolacakis, Busy Mom

I am a person that has a passion for a healthy lifestyle and someone who prides themselves on being quite knowledgeable about health and nutrition.  The Sugar Blues class was not about restriction, but rather about revelation into human patterns and tendencies.  It went beyond my expectation by delving into the science behind cravings and providing analysis and action tools for making small yet significant changes to my diet and lifestyle. As a competitive runner, I know that what I learned and will apply will help me regulate my energy for peak performance. I believe everyone has something to learn from Simla’s class that can compliment his/her unique situation. I know I did!  Thank you, Simla!
– Casandra Nied, Marathon Runner and Busy Professional

Simla was a very energetic, happy, and knowledgeable instructor. Her presentation was everything I was hoping for when I signed up.
– Andy Wilder, Engineer

EVENT DETAILS

When
Thursday, September 17, 2009 from 5:30 PM PST / 8:30 PM EST

Where
Via Webinar – Call in or watch & listen via the web from anywhere – your office, your couch, …
You’ll get the web link and phone number after you sign up BELOW.

Hosted By
5 Mini Meals.com

Investment In Your Health – SIGN UP HERE
*An exclusive offer from Delicious Health*

Only $8 with Coupon

Enter coupon code DH5MM

===> CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP<===

We’ll have fun and you’ll have immediate, easy actions you can take to redefine your relationship with sugar right away!

I hope to “see” you there!

September 9, 2009 at 1:47 AM 1 comment

Amazing Avocado Honey Cup (Looking for a new name for this recipe. Got one?)

Easy? Check.avocado
Delicious? Check.
Versatile? Check.

Only 3 ingredients and NO COOKING involved? YEAH!

I made this recipe up one morning when I wasn’t too hungry for breakfast, needed something filling and satisfying and easy to eat to hold me off until lunch, and I had a bunch of odds & ends in my fridge… as usual when it’s close to the end of the week. And given that I need to manage my blood sugar levels and adrenals carefully due to my fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue tendencies, this was the perfect breakfast – healthy fats, a good dollop of protein, fabulous fiber. For me, this is intuitive “cooking” at its best.

I had this as breakfast, but it can easily be an appetizer or snack (1/2 the recipe).

Creamy, crunchy, sweet, savory, deeeelicious, and nutritious. A great recipe, I say. Let me know what you think.

Oh – and I’m looking for a new recipe name for this. I don’t think what I have is deserving enough. Enter a comment below to send me your ideas!


Avocado Honey Cup

Makes enough for 1 breakfast serving. Have 1/2 for a snack or appetizer, or dessert!

Ingredientshoneyjar

1 ripe avocado, cut in half and seed removed
2 tsp honey (get locally made honey)
1 TBS raw pumpkin seeds

Directions

  1. Prep avocado.
  2. Drizzle honey over both sides.
  3. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds.
  4. Marvel at how pretty it looks.
  5. Grab a spoon and scoop away!

Variationspumpkinseeds

  • Use ground walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, or whole sunflower seeds instead of pumpkin seeds
  • Sprinkle with 1 TBS ground flax seed
  • If you’re really hungry, add a side of brown rice bread, toasted, spread with 1 TBS of organic goat cheese or creamy sheep’s milk cheese
  • I haven’t tried this – but if you’re having this for dessert, melt some 70% dark chocolate in a ben-marie (double boiler) and drizzle instead of the honey. WOWEEEEE YUMMYYYY! Believe it or not, avocado and chocolate go really well together. I love making up recipes on the fly. Just thought of this.

If you share this recipe, please include this blurb with it:

This recipe shared with you courtesy of Delicious Health, Inc., a health, nutrition, and lifestyle consultancy whose mission is to transform busy bodies into healthy, balanced beings (TM). Find us at www.enjoydelicioushealth.com or www.delicioushealthblog.com. Have a deliciously  healthy day!

September 9, 2009 at 1:21 AM 4 comments

Hear ye! Hear ye! F*R*E*E 5-Day Virtual Conference: Invisible Illness Awareness Week 2009

National Chronic Invisible Illness Awareness Week 2009

F*R*E*E 5-Day Virtual Conference
September 14-18, 2009

Do you live with an invisible illness or have it in the family? Cancer, Diabetes, Fibromyalgia, Lyme Disease, Lupus, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Depression… they’re all invisible… they’re all very real.

Join one or join all 20 free seminars, for F*R*E*E! Get inspired and get tons of tips on living with an invisible illness, or join with a family member / friend to show support.

Read more and join the Virtual Conference from here.

September 6, 2009 at 11:42 PM Leave a comment

Cook! SF’s Fall Cleanse – Delicious, Easy, and with a Special Discount for Delicious Health Peeps!

Do you want to break your sugar addiction?

Lose weight?

Rocket your energy levels?

Heal from the inside, out?

WITHOUT having to shop, wash, prep, cut, chop…
or plan a full week’s worth of menus…
or deprive yourself of deliciousness?

If the answer to any of these questions is “yes,” then join us for the

7 Day Cook! SF Cleanse September 18, 2009!

available for San Francisco Bay Area residents only… for now.

Based on Dr. Mark Hyman’s Ultrametabolism principles, endorsed by Drs. Marsha Nunley and Neha Sangwan, and in partnership with Delicious Health, the Cook! SF Cleanse is designed to decrease internal inflammation by removing common allergens from the food we eat during a weeklong feast of delicious, fresh whole foods meals.

Cleanse Options:
Essential Plan (7 days: 3 meals a day) – $315
Complete Plan (7 days: 3 meals & 2 snacks a day) – $415
Active Lifestyle Option (larger portions for men and / or athletes) – add $80
Delivery – $18.95 in SF / $29.95 outside San Francisco (within the Bay Area)

The Cook! SF Cleanse week begins Sept 18th, so please sign up by Saturday,  Sept 12th to join us. Use Coupon Code cDH 0909 for your Delicious-Health-only $10 discount.

Details and sample menu are on the Cook! SF website:
CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE & SIGN UP.

September 6, 2009 at 12:07 AM Leave a comment


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