Friday, August 15, 2014

7QT: Fortifying my temple of the Holy Spirit.

Beloved, I hope you are prospering in every respect and are in good health, just as your soul is prospering. [3 John 1:2]

I think it's good to be as free as possible from beauty products and pharmaceuticals, even while adopting a healthier lifestyle! So I've been taking some steps in this direction. Vanity?

--- 1 ---

It seems that in every health-related area, it's good to take any advice with a huge grain of salt. In fact, the more I research these topics using the ever-reliable Google search, I feel that I can say with Socrates "I know that I know nothing."

Take stretching, for example. Knowing that I should stretch before a run and searching for some great stretches I find that "stretching should only be done after the run when the muscles are warm and more flexible." Then the next website tells me that running without stretching beforehand is a pulled muscle waiting to happen. Which is it?? Another person solves the quandary by proposing a light stretch before the run, followed by a deeper run afterward. But several 'experts' sound the alert that stretching after a run puts too much stress on already weakened and sore joints and muscles. Ok… so do the stretching before the run, but take a brief jog first, then stop to stretch, then resume running. But wait! So long as one warms up properly and starts the run at a slow pace, no stretching is necessary. Whatever… so maybe I won't stretch at all!! Sigh.

--- 2 ---

Frustrated by the limitless expanse of contradictory information from various internet witchdoctors, I decided to try the most direct and least intelligent method at my disposal: "Can doing this hurt me? Um…. not that I know of. So, how about I try it? Um…. sure! Why not?" Trial and error.

I have a history of experimenting on myself. One of my favorites from graduate school is giving up shampoo and conditioner and just rinsing my hair with water. Eventually I started using a tiny bit of shampoo at my roots and scalp but otherwise I still just rinse with water. As far as I can tell my hair looks the same as it did before but it's much easier to style (as though I do much styling!) because it's not slippery clean like it was before (gross?). Another favorite is the asparagus treatment for UTIs. Admittedly, this did not work on my latest UTI, but I had already experienced about 24 hours of agony by the time I obtained some asparagus. So either I started eating it too late or I imagined that whole miraculous healing a couple of years ago. I'm not giving up on it yet.

--- 3 ---

One particularly epic failure was using tea tree oil to prevent/heal cold sores. As far as I could tell there was no benefit to the treatment and I spent the next few hours breathing in tea tree oil fumes, concerned that I would poison or asphyxiate myself. However, I have some hope in L-Lysine supplements which seem to have drastically reduced the severity of my cold sores and hopefully over time will prevent them altogether. Time will tell!

--- 4 ---

Last week I mentioned the raw apple cider vinegar and raw honey concoction I drank to cure my sore throat or cold or whatever that was. One of the types of debris in the raw honey is propolis which is a waxy substance that honey bees use to seal up their honeycombs. The propolis in my honey is dark brown and doesn't really taste like anything. Consuming propolis is apparently another one of the miraculous home remedies that can cure a myriad of ailments.

--- 5 ---

Colgate in Singapore even makes propolis toothpaste! Brushing my teeth with a golden crystal gel? That might take some getting used to.

--- 6 ---

I've jumped on to the oil pulling band wagon! For the last month I've been swishing organic coconut oil around my teeth for 20 minutes each day (sometimes twice) in an effort to stop my teeth from rotting out of my head. Otherwise, I am flossing and brushing as usual.

Admittedly, I haven't been to the dentist in at least two years, after spending literally thousands of dollars on fillings. I got discouraged after going in for fillings just to be told that the cavity is 'worse than it seemed' and there seems to be 'another one over here' that was missed requiring several more appointments for several more fillings. Oil pulling devotees claim that it helps ward of cavities so I figure it's worth a try.

The witchdoctors and gurus have a lot to say about oil pulling, so much that it's impossible to get a straight answer. There are claims that it can cure medical conditions as severe as AIDS and leukemia. And my reading suggests that practically any medical problem that manifests after one starts oil pulling will be brushed aside by devotees as a Herxheimer reaction due to the body undergoing a detox caused by the oil pulling. (Did you have a mild heart attack?? Oh, that's just a Herxheimer reaction indicating that you're being healed of heart disease. Um… no.) Therefore, the more miserable one feels while oil pulling the better?? Clearly not so for one woman who experienced extreme abdominal pain and vomiting after two days of oil pulling, perhaps due to a mild coconut allergy. Seriously, I just want my teeth to stop deteriorating!

After one month of "pulling" (Call it oil pulling and you sound like a newb!), I have noticed three things:

1.) For several hours each day my teeth feel like they've been cleaned by a hygienist.

2.) My teeth look slightly whiter, more so than from any whitening toothpaste I've ever used. (Just cleaning surface stains? Or actual whitening?)

3.) There may have been a small effect on my skin. I think the furrow between my eyebrows is less severe.

If achieving better health is as simple as swishing a little bit of oil around my mouth for 20 minutes a day, they why wouldn't I do that? Then again, is it that simple? That is the question.

--- 7 ---

Does everyone know that flossing should be done before brushing? Nobody had ever told me this before and I had never thought about it until a dental hygienist asked if I always floss before brushing and treated me like a buffoon for not realizing the proper order, which would apparently be obvious to anyone with half a brain. Bristles can get between your teeth better after you've flossed all of the crud out.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

No comments:

Post a Comment