Lola and Oatmeal Visit the Witch Doctor

So Saturday morning was an interesting one for us. We woke up early, packed up little Poppyseed and drove into Houston.  We rarely go into Houston, but we actually had an appointment with none other than a witch doctor.  Okay, maybe not quite a witch doctor, but a naturopath. For those of you not familiar, a naturopath does not have a medical degree (M.D.) but in some states are still considered doctors.  They treat their patients holistically with things such as nutrition, lifestyle adjustments, supplementation, massage, acupuncture, etc.

Very hippie of us, right!?

You see, when Oatmeal first got psoriasis, he went to a medical clinic here locally and was misdiagnosed twice.  The word “psoriasis” never came up and he was given a bunch of random steroids and antifungals.  Of course that didn’t work, and months later I found a great dermatologist in Houston and set him up with an appointment there.  The dermatologist walked in and took one look at Oatmeal’s affected areas and said, “psoriasis.”  We felt like idiots because we already knew that psoriasis ran in Oatmeal’s family – how could we not have guessed that?  So he was given some ointment and other such topical medications and sent on his way.  Well, that didn’t work either.  Not only does it not work, it sometimes makes it worse and the psoriasis has spread gradually ever since.  So long story short, we’ve tried various medications and gotten a few different medical opinions and have basically gotten tired of hearing, “Hey, it’s just a genetic disease, nothing you can do about it.  Try and manage your stress levels and good luck.”

But, honestly we just refuse to give up.  It’s not that we don’t trust the dermatologist or the field of medicine.  I personally have a very healthy respect for doctors and pharmaceutical drugs.  But, we tried that route and in this particular case it did not help.

It’s also not that we don’t believe in things like genetics.  It’s just that we also believe that the way you live your life, the things you eat, what you expose yourself to, etc can really play a big role in what types of diseases pop up.

Basically to sum it up, I may have cancer, heart disease and MS in my family tree, sure.  But I guess I’m saying that I personally believe that if I live a healthy life, exercise, eat well, get adequate sleep, and manage my stress level, the chances of me actually having to deal with those ailments are lower than if I did not.  Now sure, I’m going to get sick and die one day!  But we only get one body and to be born healthy is a blessing that we take for granted on a regular basis.   So I truly try to take care of the body that I was given… (while still enjoying my chocolate, coffee and wine, too!!)

So, a year ago we decided to try and fix the psoriasis through improving our diet and making more healthy lifestyle choices.  We read about going Primal and Paleo and gave up gluten and the majority of dairy. This is mainly because we learned that gluten is an inflammatory food and major trigger of autoimmune diseases such as psoriasis.   We started making sure we were more active and really attempting to get good sleep.

Then after about 6 months of that, we had a blood allergy test done.  Oatmeal’s results showed up with eggs, yeast, squash, zucchini, bananas, coconut, cranberries, kidney beans and navy beans. Eggs and yeast were the most reactive foods, meaning he pretty much needed to give them up for good.   Not good news because he loves eggs!  And yeast is in a LOT of foods such as broths and some alcohols, making it tricky to avoid.

Then we read that sometimes nightshades (peppers, tomatoes, eggplants) can be triggers, and so he gave those up too.

Theeeennnnn we bought a book called “Healing Psoriasis Naturally” which talked about the alkaline/acidic balance of foods and how if you aren’t eating the correct ratio of foods that you could very potentially make yourself sick with things like psoriasis.  This book said to also give up things such as strawberries, caffeine, red meat, etc.

So… to sum it up… in the past year Oatmeal has to given up all grains (wheat, soy, corn, barley, rye, oats, rice, etc), dairy (including milk, cheese, butter), eggs, squash, zucchini, wine (because of yeast), beer (because of wheat), liquor (because most liquor is made from grains or yeast), coffee, bananas, coconuts, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants.

Finally, Lola had to step in! 

This is getting out of control!

I mean, I don’t remember the last time we were invited to a friend’s house for dinner, and who could blame our friends for not extending those invitations?  You should see the way people’s eyes glaze over when we start to talk about our diet.  And restaurants…  ha!  Plus, as much as I like eating grilled meat and huge dinner salads each night, I hate seeing my honey pass on things that he loves such as a cup of joe in the morning or a good omelette at breakfast.  I mean, there has to be a balance, right, or it’s just not worth it!  So I took the advice of a friend who had already taken her family to this naturopath and made an appointment for us.

Well, the naturopath was great.  We immediately clicked with her, and she actually has a good track record with her other psoriasis patients.  She was really excited to know that he’d already given up gluten and dairy.  (She encouraged me to give up all dairy, especially while breastfeeding… oh geez.  Not so sure about that!  I like my 80/20 rule!)  She also reinforced that Oatmeal should continue avoiding eggs because it can really trigger skin diseases such as psoriasis.  But she gave us a different perspective, too.  She basically gave us back a few foods and advised him that while it may not be the best thing for him to consume foods on his food allergy test (such as squash, coconut, cranberries) on a regular basis, it is not the end of the world for him to eat them at times.  So hypothetically, even though those foods showed up as reactive, he can go ahead and eat some trail mix with cranberries, a serving of squash, or drink some coconut water on occasion.  It’s probably just not the best idea in the world for him to saute a pound of squash in coconut oil and chase it with some cranberry juice.

And since Oatmeal really enjoys coffee, she told him to continue drinking it in moderation.

I just really liked it when she said, “Hey, you just can’t live in a bubble.  If you really love it, and it’s something like isn’t really negative such as gluten, then keep eating it if it means you are happy.”  I think that we both really needed to hear that in order to avoid being so extreme.

It was also so interesting to hear her talk about things like environmental toxins.  Did you know there is actually a metal test that you can take to see if there are unsafe levels of metals/pollutants in your body?  Oatmeal is taking it today and I personally cannot WAIT to see what the results look like!

So basically, we were sent on our way with these instructions:

  • Oatmeal is to take a few “tinctures” to help him detox on a daily basis.  She actually mixed them up in front of us and put them in an unlabeled bottle.  That’s about the point where we started calling her a witch doctor!
  • Oatmeal is to continue avoiding things like gluten/dairy/eggs but to stop stressing so much about the other foods that we’d been avoiding.
  • Oatmeal is taking the heavy metal test.
  • He was given an herbal homeopathic remedy to use on his psoriasis patches.
  • She also gave him one more food allergy test, but mentioned that this will NOT spit out a huge panel of foods that he needs to remove, so we don’t need to worry.  Ha.  I was a little scared when she mentioned another food allergy test.

If positive thinking has anything to do with the healing process, I think we are definitely on the right track!   I also really enjoyed the visit because we were able to discuss little Poppyseed, vaccinations, and other little kiddo topics.  I really enjoyed it and will probably make an appointment for just Poppyseed in a few months.

Okay, so obviously he is not really that deprived! Enjoying a grilled T-bone, wild caught salmon, and salad (kale, spinach, avocado, almond slivers, goat cheese and blueberries with lemon juice and olive oil). Yeah, I'm not feeling all that sorry for him!



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  1. You guys are seriously the healthiest people I know. I love reading about this!! Now I want to find a naturopath around here!! I have heard of that metal test- is it the hair one? I am actually supposed to go do that next month!!

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