Monday, August 11, 2014

What Can Our Beloved Pets Teach Us?

Have you ever heard about the canary in the coal mine? When a canary bird dies in the coal mine, the miners know that they need to get out of the coal mine or risk dying too. Animals, like birds, have been known to be early indicators of disease.

Dr Weston Price experimented with cat’s diets and witnessed how certain diets affected their offspring. Like humans, what an animal consumes matters.

Like many of my clients, my cat, Jewels, has seasonal allergies. Every spring she would scratch like crazy and lose her fur. For the first several years the vet would give her prednisone shots to mask the symptoms.

Two years ago when I spent 3 months in Arizona with my daughter for a complementary cancer clinic, Jewels had a double whammy. The combination of the lack of attention along with her allergy caused her to lose half of her fur. I tried everything for about 6 months until I discovered a supplement that included blue green algae, probiotics and digestive enzymes. Within two weeks her fur returned.

This year, I ran out of the supplement and failed to order it for about a month and then when I started using it again she did not have the same immediate response. So I called the veterinarian and after testing her, it was decided that she was hyperthyroid which the Vet claimed was normal for older cats. The treatment? Either to kill the thyroid with radioactive drugs, remove the thyroid, or put her on medication for the rest of her life.

“Really?”  I asked, “what about treating the cause of the disease?” I thought about all my clients with Hashimotos or thyroid and hormone imbalances who I was able to help through diet, why would it not work for my cat? So I started to look at what ingredients are in the cat food. Not surprisingly, the same processed GMO corn, wheat, and soy that have proven to cause leaky gut in other animals (like cows in CAFOs and farm raised salmon) where we are feeding them unnatural diets.

So based on my knowledge, I changed her diet again, this time eliminating all grains. Jewels’ fur has started to grow back, dramatically, within a week.

Unfortunately, this connection between diet and health is not well known in conventional medicine as current medical students still only get up to 7 hours of nutritional training in their years of medical school (one of my clients, an MD, questioned whether if it was even that much.)

After further prodding, my Vet said that we could try an unproven, prescription-only diet for thyroid health for cats. I ordered the special diet that I had to buy through her and when it arrived one week later (after my cat was already improving) guess what the top ingredients are for the dried food? Corn Gluten meal, Whole grain corn, soybean mill run and a whole bunch of supplements. No thank you!

When will I learn to trust my own gut and inner wisdom? Unfortunately, I had to spend hundreds of dollars on testing and special food before I realized that my gut instinct and newfound knowledge was correct all along. Live and learn. Each day, each meal, we have the opportunity to choose either life affirming foods that nourish us or artificial food that can cause discomfort and disease. 

After all, we are constantly moving towards one of two states, either living or dying. Unlike our pets, every day we get a choice.

We can either focus on the three L’s: Love, laughter and living

Or three D’s: Diet, Deprivation and Death. 

We can react out of fear or respond out of self-love. Which will you choose today? I’m choosing Love, laughter, and living.

For me and Jewels.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Guest Blogger: Dana from The Closet Confessional

Hi everyone, Dana here! I'm the founder of the style blog, The Closet Confessional as well as the daughter of Lisa Jackson (founder of this spectacular blog). As anyone who has been following Carpe Diem Wellness knows, my mom is all about feeling good (which leads to looking good!) and following your passion.

I’ve spent the last several years doing both.

After being diagnosed with cancer, I learned to stop regularly destroying my body with crap (I say regularly because I’m not about to completely give up dark chocolate or red wine. Life’s about balance, right?) and start focusing on the things in life that bring me joy.

For me, that joy is fashion.

And seeing how I’m on a strict budget - like most people I know - I get very excited over bargain finds. Probably a little too excited. To the point where someone will compliment me on an article of clothing and my first response is not “thank you,” but “I got it for 7 dollars at fill-in-the-blank store!” But I can’t help it. I have champagne tastes on a beer budget. Or organic fruit tastes on a conventional fruit budget.

But just because I shop for affordable items, doesn't mean I'm filling my closet with cheap, mass produced clothes. The older I get, the more I realize the value in quality over quantity. This is why stores like Havana Vintage Boutique totally rock. They specialize in unique, quality items from all over the world at affordable costs. 

This dress I’m wearing here? A brand new Diane Von Furstenberg - with the tags still on - that I scored there at a fraction of the retail price.

A bargain like that? Makes me feel good and look good.

Find out more about me and The Closet Confessional on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram. And thanks for letting me takeover at Carpe Diem Wellness!