We came close to losing our son Charles a few years back His story is a testament to how the body can heal itself. I know people who have cured themselves of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and other conditions that are considered “incurable”. My son Charles is one of those people.
Intensive Care & Bleeding In the Brain
One afternoon in 2004 we rushed Charles, who was 25 at the time, to the hospital. He’d been feeling a bit sick and all of a sudden became incredibly dizzy and weak. They ran some tests and we learned he had a condition called Thrombocytopenia (ITP), which means he was not making enough platelets. A healthy body has more than 150,000 platelets per micro liter of blood. Charles had 2000. The doctor said he had no idea how he was even standing. ITP causes you to bleed and bruise easily, among other things, and Charles case was so bad he was bleeding in his brain. They immediately put him in intensive care.
Photo Taken Shortly Before Hospitalization
As with many diseases there are a variety of possible causes for ITP. The treatments for it that help raise the platelet count are transfusions, steroids and the removal of spleen, none of which cures the condition. The best you can hope for is to raise the platelet count for a time. Those were some rough days for all of us while he was in intensive care and it was touch and go for a while. They immediately gave him high doses of steroids and we all anxiously waited to see if they would bring his platelets up. Within two days his platelets rose and eventually he left the hospital. The doctor had told Charles his options and was waiting to hear back from him as to whether he wanted to schedule getting his spleen removed.
At the time this happened I’d been studying health and natural holistic treatments for a couple of years. My focus was to learn what the body needed to stay disease free and how to heal it, rather than just treating the symptoms, which is pretty much all that western medicine does. When Charles got home I immediately sat down with him and shared what I had been learning. I told him that our bodies are incredible and can heal themselves of virtually anything if they are taken care of properly. I then encouraged him to do some studying on his own. He took that challenge to heart. He told the doctor he was opting to not have his spleen removed as he was going to try and heal himself naturally. He did of course continue to take the steroids so his platelet count remained out of the danger zone.
Charles formulated a plan that involved a dramatic change in his diet. In his research he learned that the body heals best when giving mainly a plant based diet, which is what it biologically needs. He also started exercising, as up to this point he’d led a fairly dormant life. These two things alone are responsible for most of the disease and illness we see in our society. Changing them is the key to health and healing.
During this time Charles kept an online journal of his progress. I’ve included three of his entries below. To this day he is the epitome of good health and has not had a single problem with ITP.
Three of Charles Journal Entries
Tuesday, March 8th, 2005 2:26 pm Visions of Vegetables
After experiencing some more symptoms related to my ITP, I went in for another checkup some six days ago. My platelets were down pretty low again, about 5,000. Of course this is bad, so they started me up on another short 4-day stint of steroids to give them a little boost. And with a current count of 66,000 it seems to have done the trick.
When I found out my platelets were back down to 5,000 again, I decided to drastically change my diet. I have been reading further on ITP, and have found there are specific types of ITP related directly to alcohol and diuretics. So, the two main things I’ll be avoiding in my new diet are dairy (milk is a diuretic) and caffeine. The whole slew of food items with ingredients containing “enriched whatever” are out of the picture as well, such as enriched flour and enriched sugar. I’ve been reading various Bad Things about them. My main staple will be fruit and vegetables. I’ll be avoiding red meats, stuff that feels “heavy” to me. Meaning I eat it, and the next day it feels like it’s still with me (which it is!) Chicken or fish every once in a while if I get the urge to gnaw on something meaty.
I started this up the day I found out my platelets were so low, and so far I’ve been feeling tremendously well. It may simply be the steroids helping me out, but I’ve had them three times before and I don’t remember ever feeling this good. I’m getting plenty of sleep too, which probably has something to do with it. All I can say is I am hopeful that this new diet proves beneficial. I’m hopeful that my platelets will rise, but if they don’t, I think this vegetarian-ish stuff might stick regardless. If it can’t fix my platelet problem, it at least seems to make me feel pretty good! Which is an interesting turn of events, seeing as the consumption of vegetables in even minuscule amounts would have had me vomiting at the taste some few years ago. I can’t seem to get enough of the stuff now!
Current Mood: happy
Friday, March 18th, 2005 5:57 pm My Rockin’ Day of Super Awesomeness
I feel so awesome right now. So here’s the deal!So, all during this time and for the subsequent week up to now, I stick to my diet. No caffeine, no dairy. Those are the big ones. I’m finally getting more used to going places and telling them to leave out the cheese or whatever.
I cheat slightly with chocolate soy milk, chocolate having a little caffeine in it, maybe once a day when I do a “cayenne shot” with some of my coworkers. And sometimes I will have a little bit of the lighter meats, such as chicken, or maybe other darker meats if it’s very little (like I had some prosciutto on this one salad I had at a pizza-ish place). I eat organic oatmeal in the mornings with fruit, and supplement all my other meals with salads and as much leafy green-ness as possible.
Well, today, the Friday of awesomeness, rolls around! A day which is awesome for a number of reasons, which are related to all sorts of things: awesome kick-butting at work, awesome feeling of the goodness and taming of the cold, awesome coworker taking me to a hospital almost 30min away, awesome platelet count, and awesome procuring of a cab a full hour before it was expected due to lots of snow and stuff.
So the platelet count! Up from 5,000 it is now 37,000! Which doesn’t sound so spectacular seeing as a normal count is 150,000 or more. But! This is the first time it has EVER happened WITHOUT the use of a prescription or some other sort of treatment. After talking with my parents and listening to my gut feeling, I had decided not to fill the prescription for steroids all during the last two weeks. And of course I did not have the transfusion of WinRho again, or whatever it was they wanted to pump into me.
Anyway, there are a few herbal type medicines I am taking in addition to eating healthily. I don’t know if it’s directly related to one or the other or a combination of both, but my bet is on the diet. The more I keep with this diet the better I feel. I seriously have not felt this good in a long time, it’s just silly. And it makes total sense. You are what you eat. If you don’t have the raw materials of awesomeness, you cannot build the uber fortress of manly fortitude which will function properly and… awesomely! I was getting along with vegetables and hopeful they would help me out before, but now, let me tell you, we’re best buds. I’m takin’ this diet to the bank! No way no how am I going back to the crap I used to eat. I’ve found plenty of tasty healthy things and… it’s awesome! And also it rocks.
Friday, June 10th, 2005 8:01 pm
After just getting home from a bike ride and pacing around my apartment half-naked (you know, to cool off… what), I took a look in the mirror and for the first time I really noticed how much weight I’ve lost since not too long ago. And what’s this! Cheekbones! …The weight’s been dropping ever since a few months or so back when I started eating much healthier and exercising regularly.
I’m always up around 7-8am and in bed no later than midnight, often by 10pm. I eat a large breakfast of whole grain cereal and soy milk or organic oatmeal with whole grain toast, as well as an apple, orange, or banana. For lunches I generally have an organic non-dairy burrito covered in salsa and baby spinach. For dinner I tend to only snack or bypass it altogether and seldom eat past the 6pm mark.
I make sure and chew my food well, which may sound obvious, but try eating an entire meal while forcing yourself to chew each bite 10 or more times before swallowing… it really irritated me at first. I was used to taking really huge bites and chewing maybe 5 times before gulping it down. But I’ve come to really enjoy my meals when I have them. …
I was snacking after lunch and dinner for a while, usually a small amount of soy ice cream or soy/tofu frozen treats or an organic oatmeal raisin cookie, but I’m getting to the point where I don’t feel compelled to always have it. My snacking is becoming more often the dried-fruit and nuts variety. It complements my sometimes dry, fruity, and nutty sense of humor.
I never exercise more than 20 or 30 minutes a day either, half of which is a brisk ride around Lake Calhoun on Ye Olde Mountaine Bikee. The rest of it’s comprised of quick (no more than a couple minutes) aerobic ab-twisty and face-stretchy exercises that I trained myself to do every time I go into the bathroom (don’t ask.) Just something to get the blood pumping throughout the day. Your body needs all the help it can get when your job involves so much time cooling your heels in front of a monitor. Anyway, it’s pretty awesome!
As far as personal accomplishments have gone the last few years, this by far is my most measurable and rewarding one. I am captain aboard the great and mighty H.M.S. Beefcake Muttonchops, sailing out upon the vast and untamed oceans of Goodness!
Current Mood: pleased Current Music: Jimmy Cliff – Bright Sunshiny Day
Charles Participating in a Mud Run
More and more high profile doctors are proclaiming the benefit of a plant based diet for preventing disease and for optimal health. Dr. Joel Fuhrman has a phenomenal book called “Eat To Live” on how he has treated thousands of patients who have cured themselves of many conditions simply by changing how they ate. This is about eating the way we are biologically meant to eat. When you eat that way, you thrive. When you don’t, you have disease and sickness. It’s as simple as that.
Another book well worth reading is by well known author John Robbins called “Healthy at 100“. John was heir to Baskin Robbins and turned it down as it did not promote health. John studied people around the world and found the groups that view aging as a blessing and who have people in their 90’s who are healthier than many 20 year-olds. We are literally killing ourselves with our eating and lifestyle choices. Virtually all disease and conditions such as Alzheimer, cancer, heart disease, diabetes etc. are self inflicted. And virtually all can be reversed as the body has an incredible ability to heal itself if just given what it needs. We can all live to a very old age in full health and with all our faculties.
I have this photo of Charles hanging on my wall in a large 48″ frame. It’s a constant reminder of what the body can overcome.
I recently told a friend of mine that Roy and I have a goal to live to over 100 in full health. I then told her I wanted to die in my sleep holding hands with him… at the same time. I probably should give Roy a heads up on that plan.
May you all be well, Nancy
Excellent Books & Videos
Forks Over Knives Documentary by doctors and other scientists & professionals. The China Study Book By Dr. T. Colin Campbell The Food Revolution By John Robbins Eat To Live By Dr. Joel Fuhrman Healthy at 100 By John Robbins Fat Sick and Nearly Dead Documentary Food Matters Documentary