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Giving Thanks

I intend to keep this short and sweet. America’s Thanksgiving holiday is not all about food. It’s a wonderful time to pause, reflect, and feel gratified for life’s blessings.

I’m thankful for my family and friends, for my health and the tdayhealth of those I love, and every day I spend on earth. Nothing in this life is guaranteed, so I’m going to spend time with loved ones and really appreciate what matters in life.

I wish the same for you, no matter where you are.

Enjoy the day!

photo credit: Thanksgiving Table @Thalestria – Details via photopin (license)

Migraine Free (No Whammies!)

A week ago today—because you bet I’ve been keeping track—marked six months since I’ve had a migraine. This is a BIG deal, friends. After a sixteen-year struggle with the things, which would come on at semi-regular intervals and render me incapacitated for 24-36 hours, this is a freedom I have to acknowledge and celebrate.

:throws confetti:

My triggers were many over the years. Most significantly was every woman’s bosom buddy: hormones. But sometimes stress, overstimulation, extended periods of sunlight or noise. A delayed meal, dehydration. Other times my susceptibility was inexplicable. (Say that five times super-fast.)

I charted food, MSG, caffeine, but could never pinpoint something I was (or wasn’t) ingesting as a cause. My doc put me on a regimen of proven-to-help vitamins, which only leveled out my “normal” everyday headaches. I tried innumerable tricks and suggested remedies.

ID-10018289

This photo doesn’t look like confetti to me, but it’s what popped up when I was searching images for some. And I like it. (freedigitalphotos.net)

Prescription medications either didn’t touch ’em or sharpened the suffering or, in one case, brought on allergic reaction. There really was no relief to be had. All I could do was bury myself in bed, in a dark and quiet room, pillow over my head, earplugs in place. I had to block out all of the things, but even then I could only wait out the pain (nausea sometimes, too), praying for numbing sleep, getting very little.

Until April, that is. That’s when the migraines stopped, and — do you believe this? — because of no one thing I can explain. I wish I could say, “I did this on that day, and it’s what healed me.” But I can’t.

There are some identifiable differences in my life, though. A handful of things, actually, and so is it the combination? One small change which is overshadowed by the others? A fluke?

* I’ve improved both my diet and exercise.

* I’m on a blood pressure medication. I never had any precursors or symptoms, but HBP runs in my family and after several months of risky numbers, I started taking a common Rx.

* I get a regular shot now, too, which controls my hormones — thereby eliminating (huzzah!) the menstrual migraines.

* I drink ounces and ounces of water, and have mostly eliminated carbonated drinks. (And I thought I’d never give up Dr Pepper.)

* Since the start of 2014 — but especially in the last six months — I have let go of a lot (and gained so much more). There is a ton to be said for personal progress, healing, finding peace (and truth), and giving up stress. A ton. I mean it.

I suppose it’s not coincidence that these changes all took effect at the same time, springtime, though I didn’t coordinate them, I certainly didn’t plan for them to commence together.

I guess therein lies the magic.

And I’m celebrating it!

To keep up with me on my personal blog, go to Woman, Determined. I also have a new Facebook page, if you’d like to come see me there.

Aging with Nature

As I age, I find myself looking for ways to eat healthy and increase my longevity. We all know the secret is diet and exercise. Vitamins and minerals, cardio workouts… I get it. But eating multi-vitamins have their own set of challenges. Too much of one, not enough of another, this one inhibits the absorption of that one…why can’t I just get what I need from food? It’s complicated. We’re busy, we’re watching our weight, who can eat 8 servings of fruits and vegetables in one day?

Me? I’ve decided to take small steps toward the bigger picture of good health. Take lemon water. It’s a natural digestive aid. Lemon water purges toxins from the blood which helps keep skin clear as well. The vitamin C component helps decrease wrinkles and blemishes. Just ask Martha Stewart! She drinks the juice of one lemon in a glass of water every day. Me, too. 🙂

branch of lemons

Another fabulous find is flax seed. Lots of people take this one for their heart, but I started taking it for its anti-inflammatory benefits. Not sure whether it reduces inflammation in my body or not, but I am sold on its hair and nail re-growth aspects. My hair has noticeably improved. Noticeably. And flax seed is easy to incorporate into my daily routine. I simply plop 2 tablespoons into my oatmeal every morning—or banana-strawberry smoothie—and I’m off to the races!

Another wonder food is the avocado. Avocadoes provide all 18 essential amino acids necessary for the body to form a complete protein. Unlike the protein in steak, which is difficult for most people to digest, avocado protein is readily absorbed by the body because avocadoes also contain fiber. Protein helps sustain muscle. Muscle strength training protects against osteoporosis—a problem for aging, post-menopausal women. Ugh. Can’t wait for those days.

2 oz wheatgrass juice

I’m also beginning a wheatgrass regime. 2 oz. a day they say is good for anemia and a host of other things that ail you but anemia is something I can acutally test to prove. Two months of re-oxygenating my blood with wheatgrass and I will recheck my levels of hemoglobin, etc. I’ll keep you posted.

So how about you? Any beauty and health secrets you’d like to share?

For more on healthy eating and organic gardening, head on over to my garden blog: BloominThyme.

A Clean Slate

fairyhappyAs spring creeps in and our days in western Canada get longer, I’m cherishing the thought of friendlier temperatures and no more back breaking shoveling.

Last week, the flu invaded the Seabrook house, and slayed my son and me. My husband has miraculously avoided the germ — or perhaps he’s just successfully avoided us — and he remains healthy and wise.

I, on the other hand, seem to have lost a few more brain cells. And now it feels like I’m stepping back into my book as though it’s a brand new story. The ideas are all waiting there in the deep dark recesses of my brain, tempting and taunting me with the brilliance. But as they spill onto the page, they turn into the mess that resembles a mind-map gone insane.

So this morning, my post is just a simple “HELLO” to the world. I raise my cup of coffee to you and wish you all a healthy, happy and productive week.

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