Coconut Oil

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Coconut oil is defiantly trendy right now.  But the great thing about the Coconut oil Fad is that everyone is 100 % correct.  Coconut oil is Amazing!

All fats are not created equal

Coconut oil contains short term medium-chain saturated fatty acids (MCFAs), which is a “healthy” form saturated fat compared to trans fat. Trans fatty acid consumption is linked with heart problems, depression and increased cholesterol levels. What does consuming MCFA fats in coconut oil mean for your body? Our body metabolises these fats in the liver, immediately coverting this into energy (fuel for the brain and muscle function) rather than it being stored as fat.

Coconut oil Supports Immunity

Coconut oil is made up of healthy fats lauric acid, caprylic acid and capric acid which contain antifungal, antibacterial, antiviral prosperities to boost the immune system. Lauric acid contains the highest concentration of MCFA fatty acids, approximately 75 per cent. The body turn this fat into monolaurin which is claimed to help heal viruses such as herpes, influenza, cytomegalovirus, helicobacter pylori and candida.

Coconut oil online, buy coconut oil

Stops Sugar Cravings

Instead of reaching for the lollie jar for an afternoon sweet hit, try eating a teaspoon of virgin coconut oil to beat sugar cravings. This is because good quality fat is more satiating than carbs, so if you cut down on sugar you will feel less ‘ravenous’. Most of us do not realize but constant hunger is a major clue that your body is not being fed correctly.  With the proper amounts of fats and protein, you can fuel your energy reserves properly, and come off the sugar roller coaster that many of us are on.

Balinese Banana & Coconut Smoothie

  • Ice
  • Milk
  • Frozen bananas
  • Roasted Cashews
  • A table spoon of coconut oil.

Blend all the ingredients in a blender until the oil has emulsified and the mixture looks smooth and creamy.  Order COCONUT OIL to come straight to your door – Amazing!

Coconut Oil Pulling 

For when your platelets are so low you don’t want to brush.  An option for people with low platelets then OIL PULLING is a great way to maintain dental hygiene without a mouth full of the blood.

 

Grapefruit – Is There a Problem?

Grapefruit and medication, itp medications, Side Effects Prednisone

Grapefruit? What’s the Problem?

The other day I found myself with a grapefruit in my hand and an old wives tale in my head.  I don’t know why it came to me, but something was telling me not to eat the Grapefruit; something about grapefruit making the pill not work, like St John’s wort?

Then I doubted myself.  How can a grapefruit be an evil kind of citrus when all the rest are fine?

What was I going to do with the Grapefruit tree in my back yard, plumb and ladened with the most burdensome of citrus?  I started to ask a few friends if they had heard of this medication mixing myth.

I Started to Hear Conflicting Stories –

  • A friend of mine told me her mother could not drink Grapefruit juice while she was being treated for Breast Cancer – Apparently the nurses where quite insistent.
  • Another friend told me to eat plenty of Grapefruit as it is listed as a great food to eat on the alkaline diet, with mangos, limes, lemons and papaya.
  • ‘Grapefruits?  Oh yes, you should eat one every day – Very good for the fat burning’ they told me.
  • ‘Grapefruit? Oh no! Stay away from that one.

My current contraceptive pill warns me to stay away from St John’s Wart, but there is not mention of Grapefruit on the instructions –

Is it just an old wives tale?

Treatment for itp, treatment of itp, treatment itp, itp treatments, Side Effects Prednisone,
Related Search Results for Grapefruit.

I decided to find out weather or not the humble fat busting little sour drum could really cause that much damage.  I had to do some research.

I googled ‘Grapefruit and Medications’ Wow!

There is a lot of information out there to confirm that Grapefruits do in fact effect a lot of prescription medications.

 

‘Today, more than 30 commonly prescribed drugs carry a warning against mixing their use and grapefruits or grapefruit juice. This is not innocuous, because so many Americans have grapefruit for breakfast at a time when they also take their medications.'(1)

Here is the confusing part – Grapefruits do not interact with every drug.  

But WHY?

Reactions between Grapefruit and prescription drugs was first documented in 1989 by a Canadian Medical Scientist,who discovered that when he took felodipine with grapefruit juice his blood-concentration of the drug was four times as high as it should have been. In other words, a standard dose combined with grapefruit juice was four times as potent as it was without grapefruit juice. (2)

‘Grapefruit juice blocks special enzymes in the wall of the small intestine that actually destroys many medications and prevents their absorption into the body. Thus, smaller amounts of the drugs get into the body than are ingested. When the action of this enzyme is blocked, more of the drugs get into the body and the blood levels of these medications increase. This can lead to toxic side effects from the medications.’ (3)

What I found was that grapefruits seem to have the most disastrous effects on the drugs that people would probably keep quite private.  Drugs and medications used to treat mental health are the most susceptible to the enzyme dissolving grapefruit juice.  You just never know what people are taking…

CitruaJust Grapefruit?

What about other citrus?

Well it looks like it is just Grapefruits.  There is an emzyme in grapefruits that are not found in any other fruit at all.  Weird.  but true.

The truth is that Grapefruits might not have any effect on the medications and drug you are taking – But really? they aren’t that nice.  I am going to just steer clear I think.

 

 Other Medication-Effecting Foods

While researching I found this list that outlines others foods that may also effect medication and prescription drugs – Please note that this is only a small sample of medication-effecting foods and should not be taken as the only risk.

Grapefruit juice: Some statin drugs to lower cholesterol, such as simvastatin (Zocor), atorvastatin (Lipitor), and pravastatin (Pravachol); some blood pressure-lowering drugs, such as Nifediac and Afeditab ; some organ transplant rejection drugs, such as Sandimmune and Neoral (both cyclosporine); some anti-anxiety drugs, such as BuSpar (buspirone); some anti-arrhythmia drugs, such as Cordarone and Nexterone (both amiodarone); some antihistamines, such as Allegra (fexofenadine); the anti-malaria drugs Quinerva or Quinite (quinine); and Halcion (triazolam), a medication used to treat insomnia.

Licorice: The sweetening compound glycyrrhizin in black licorice may reduce the effects of some blood pressure drugs or urine-producing drugs including Hydrodiuril (hydrochlorothiazide) and Aldactone (spironolactone). It may increase the toxicity risks from Lanoxin (digoxin), used to treat congestive heart failure and abnormal heart rhythms.

Chocolate: Antidepressant Monoamine Oxidase (MAO) inhibitors (such as phenelzine (Nardil, Nardelzine) and tranylcypromine (Parnate) are just one category of drugs that shouldn’t be consumed with excessive amounts of chocolate and other caffeinated foods. Caffeine can also interact with stimulant drugs such as Ritalin (methylphenidate), increasing their effect, or by decreasing the effect of sedative-hypnotics such as Ambien (zolpidem). Using bronchodilators with caffeinated foods and drinks can increase the chance of side effects, such as excitability, nervousness, and rapid heart beat.

Potassium-rich foods (such as bananas, oranges, and green leafy vegetables): Can add to high potassium levels in the body caused by ACE (Angiotensin Converting Enzyme) inhibitors including captopril (Capoten) and enalapril (Vasotec) prescribed to lower blood pressure or treat heart failure. Too much potassium can cause an irregular heartbeat and heart palpitations.

St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum): Can reduce concentrations of medications in the blood, including digoxin (Lanoxin), used to treat congestive heart failure and abnormal heart rhythms; the cholesterol-lowering drug lovastatin (Mevacor and Altocor), and the erectile dysfunction drug sildenafil (Viagra).

Vitamin E: Taken with a blood-thinning medication such as warfarin (Coumadin) can increase anti-clotting activity and may cause an increased risk of bleeding.

Ginseng: May increase the risk of bleeding when taken with anticoagulants (blood thinners such as warfarin and heparin). Can also increase the bleeding effects of aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen, naproxen, and ketoprofen. Combined with MAO inhibitors such as Nardil or Parnate may cause headache, trouble sleeping, nervousness and hyperactivity.

Ginkgo biloba: High doses can decrease the effectiveness of anticonvulsant therapy in patients taking seizure-control medicines Tegretol, Equetro or Carbatrol (carbamazepine), and Depakote (valproic acid). (4)

 

References

Grapefruit and Prescription Drugs: Mix Carefully – By Mark Bloom HealthDay Reporter, (1)(2) 

Grapefruit Juice Can Interact With Medicines! – Original Medical Author: William C. Shiel, Jr, MD, FACP, FACR Medical Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD, (3)

Grapefruit not only food that can Effect Medication – Michelle Healy, USA TODAY (4)

Salt and Prednisone

Salt and Prednisone

Feature image from ITPANDME

Prednisone may cause sodium (salt) and fluid retention, which can raise blood pressure and contribute to swelling.  The good thing is that, as you reduce the amount of salt you are consuming you will also reduce your taste for the salt and smaller amounts will taste stronger than before.

Fluid Retention

Most of us consume much more salt (sodium chloride) than our body needs. Normally, our kidneys keep our body in balance any excess salt is excreted in the urine. Prednisone causes sodium retention and potassium loss which may lead to fluid retention, weight gain, bloating and low blood potassium levels.   . It may be helpful to add high potassium foods such as bananas, citrus fruits, melons, and tomatoes to your diet.

High Blood Pressure

In some patients, this can cause high blood pressure or worsen a pre-existing condition. We suggest a no-added salt diet and avoidance of highly salted pre-packaged convenience foods.

Be sure that your blood pressure is checked regularly, perhaps every time your platelet count is checked.

Tips and Ideas for Cooking – Use fresh herbs whenever possible – Read food labels – You should be doing this anyway – Don’t add salt to your cooking – Remove the salt shaker from your table – For More help reducing Sodium in your diet, take at look at The Low Sodium Diet – The 101 best foods. It is available on Kindle for $3 AUD – Click here to Purchase

Drink more water.  Your body is retaining a lot more salt with the Pred and therefore will also retain a lot more fluid.  Feeling a bit fat?  Your probably are.  The best thing you can do is to teach you body, through habit that you will not let yourself go thirsty and you body will eventually trust you, knowing that more water is always coming and wont need to keep so much of an emergency store of it over your body.

It is important that you do actually keep up with drinking lots of water and to be reliable and consistent with it – Or your body just wont trust you and will try and solve the problem on its own.

Store your water in steal glass or aluminium bottle in your bag always.  Have a bottle of water at your desk.  Get rid of the plastic and go bpa free.

6 Reasons We Love Lemons

more lemons

Feature image from ITPANDME

 

 1. A Great Way to Wake Up

One of the biggest changes that ITP can bring to your life is fatigue.  FATIGUE is listed as the number on the list of side effects that impact on life with ITP.    Lemons wake you up in the morning – Spleen meridian in in over drive between 8am and 10am.  Lots of patients report feeling sluggish in the morning or tending to be more of a night time person.  Lemon oil is proven to stimulate the brain, when patients are feeling fatigued.

Drinking a warm glass of water with fresh lemon juice is a wonderfully gentle way to turn on your body in the morning and wake up your mind.

2. Starts Your Metabolism

The acidic nature of the lemon juice actually stimulates digestional juices in your stomach.  There is something in the juice that presses a start button in your body.  Lemon juice is a common cure for curing constipation as well.  I now take my medication in the morning with lemon water while I am eating breakfast.  I love the smell – and it seems to get my metabolism started and kicks my brain into gear.

3. Cleanses and Tones Your Skin

Natural anti bacterial, which helps fight and prevent ache and blackheads.  ITP patients should NEVER SQUEEZE PIMPLES!!  blood and little bruise pock marks appear instantly after a facial pimple has been squeezed.  Please use the lemon juice people!

4. Bleach Darker Facial Hairs

Yes we know you have a beard now form your treatment.  Lemon juice is a great natural bleaching agent for dark hair growth.  Gentle enough to use on the lips chin and around your eyes.  just be careful of any cut or cracked skin, as it will sting!

5. Removes Uneven Skin Tone

Pure, fresh lemon juice is great for evening out blotches, marks and even bleaching freckles from your skin.  It works in the same way the lemon juice can naturally bleach darker facial hairs on your body.  The lemon juice asks as a gentle and natural bleaching agent on your skin, while cleaning, toning and covering you face with amazing anti oxidants.  While the results are not permanent, they are certainly impressive.

6. Full of Vitamin C

VITAMIN C is one of the most important vitamins needed for fighting off infection and illness.  Lemon juice boosts the immune system of the body, and it can be used for treating infections.  Hot water with lemon, honey and ginger is still the go to drink for beating the common flu.  Most cold and flu relief products will boast a lemon component.

Additionally, it can provide relief for illnesses such as burns, skin care, high blood pressure, cataracts, the common cold, mouth ulcers, hair disorders, respiratory disorder and obesity.

Can You Drink Alcohol with ITP?

ITP and Me, ITP and Alcohol, ITP can I drink?

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So this is a very difficult question, as both alcohol and ITP effect everyone differently.  You are going to be the best person to know how both ITP and Alcohol effect you.  You might be the only person.  Some people may feel comfortable having a glass of wine if their platelets are above a certain number, others may never want to drink again after being diagnosed, that’s great.

My experience with ITP and Alcohol

Most of the time, the people making up rules about ITP and drinking are people with no clue.  It is usually people at parties, friends of friends who are sure there is no way you should be drinking!

Let us refer to SCIENCE for a moment. Recent epidemiological studies have consistently shown that moderate intake of alcoholic beverages protect against morbidity and mortality from coronary heart disease and stroke – By contrast, alcohol drinking may also predispose to cerebral haemorrhage. These observations suggest an effect of alcohol similar to that of aspirin.’

Can I drink Alcohol with ITP?

In the weeks before I was diagnosed with ITP, I was probably drinking a lot.  I was living in a share house with two other girls and was chasing a guy around Sydney, suitably intoxicated.  I recall one evening when I joined him and his friends for a friendly game of drunken AMF bowling in the city.

I can picture it now.  A cheer went up from the group as someone’s ball rolled limply down the alley and I turned quickly on my heels to head back to the bar.  Crack.  I had swung round, with all my weight I had committed myself straight into a concrete pole.  Face first, struck out!  What an idiot!

My head hurt and a huge bruise appeared just under my hair line so no one could see it.  A few days later I was chased down at work by a panicked GP who was sending me to emergency with a platelet count of 17.  I’m kind of glad I didn’t get brain damage to be honest.

After I was diagnosed with ITP I stopped drinking for a while.  I thought I was being very healthy and proactive.  As time went on and the ITP remained in my life, I reintroduced alcohol into my dietary rotation.  I don’t drink a lot of alcohol, but I defiantly did enjoy few glass of wine in the beginning.

The thing was that, for me, there was absolutely no change in my platelet count or ITP symptoms, weather I drank a little alcohol or not.  I was so frustrated.  That it had all been for nothing, the sobering parties, the driving people home after 12, the patronising questions about my ‘Health Kick’, and sarcastic friends asking when my baby was due.  All for Nothing.

After not drinking for so long.  I thought I would feel amazing and never drink again, but I didn’t.

Not drinking has it’s own challenges.  Firstly, wine is delicious, and expensive tasty wines are even better.  You could never join Confrerie des Chevaliers if you didn’t drink.  There is still no greater ice breaker at a party than to share and discuss a lovely glass of red.  Not drinking also makes you look a little like a square (Sorry Leigh) and at my age, insights sly winks from friends regarding ‘expectancy’.

Drinking is a depressant, which can make it sound like a bit of a downer.  What it offers is a chemically induced decompress after a stressful day.  Alcohol, particularly wine has the wonderful powers of slowing you down, taking you out of your head and loosening you up a little.  Please note that I am obviously not a doctor.

I am not recommending that anyone with ITP take up the bottle.

I am  simply unconvinced that a blanket ban on alcohol for patients with ITP is necessary.

Vitamin D, Naturally

itp, blood disorder, vitamin d

Feature image from ITPANDME

We should be striving for a healthy lifestyle that naturally includes a variety of foods and activities that enables us to get a rich assortment of vitamins and minerals without even thinking about it.  This sort of diversity rich diet should be a daily habit for us all.  Unfortunately it is not.  Habits are made by practice and conscious thought.  So lets take a moment to create a few habits that will ensure we always have enough Vitamin D in our system.

What can Vitamin D do for you?

itp, blood disorder, vitamin d
a natural source
  • Improve your Mood – Did you know that platelets carry a small amount of serotonin through your blood stream to various receptors in your body?  With a very low platelet count, there is no way you are getting the same serotonin absorption as others.  Serotonin is what contributes to a positive happy mood.  Without as much Serotonin, it is important to not let yourself get too sad.  Vitamin d can help you there, as a natural mood elevator it can help you maintain a positive outlook.
  • Strengthen your bones – Vitamin D is directly related to bone health, which cannot be over looked.  Your bones are not simply the scaffolding of you body, but living changing tissue that produces blood from its marrow.  Vitamin D keeps your bones strong and healthy – which is where all your platelets are going to be produced.
  • Tone your muscles – Vitamin D is believed to improve muscle tone and strength, as there are vitamin D receptors in striated muscle, and Vitamin D appears to play a role in the signalling that is responsible for muscle protein synthesis.

The Top 5 ways increase your Vitamin D, Naturally

  • Sunshine  – This is the cheapest, easiest and most publicly accessible form to Vitamin D.  It is also my favourite.  But the sun has been getting a lot of bad publicity over the years, leading to people shying away from a lazy afternoon nap in the sun.  You do not need to be out in the sun, uncovered for hours to get the benefit of Vitamin D, instead just head out for 10 minutes at a time, go for a walk, read the paper in the sunshine, bbq, open all the curtains and let the sun shine in.  Alternatively you could fly to Fiji or Bali for a few weeks – for your health of course.
  • Fatty fish – For example Salmon, Trout, Orange Roughy, Anchovies, Tuna and Whitebait.  There are many more to choose from but I have just listed my favourites.  There are a lot of reasons to be eating more fatty fish such as naturally occurring fish oil and Omega 3.  It is a fantastic Paleo option for those are interested in eating a paleo Diet.
  • Whole Un-homogenized Milk– Full cream or full fat milk does contain a very small amount of Vitamin D, probably the lowest of all the suggested food sources, but I have included it here for a very specific reason.  That is the combination of Calcium and Vitamin D in this tasty, fatty and filling food item.  One must be very thorough in order to get enough of both Vitamin D and Calcium to get the best results, and while there might not be a huge amount of Vitamin D found in full cream milk, you can be sure that with all that Calcium your body will absorb every single gram of it.

    itp vitamin D
    free range eggs
  • Free Range Eggs – So I have to tell you that all the good stuff is in the yolk.  All of the fat-soluble vitamins such as A, E, D and K are there.  While there is a large number of foods for meat eaters to consume that contain vitamin D, there are a lot less options for Vegetarians.  The egg yolk is one of the few foods naturally containing Vitamin D and should not be discarded in favour of it’s more slimming, protein rich white.  There is also a notable amount of Calcium, Phosphorus and Magnesium, which we should be taking as well.
  • itp, vitamin D, itp vitamins and suppliments
    mushrooms

    Mushrooms  – Mushrooms a good source for vitamin D, and that you can naturally multiply their levels by exposing them to sunlight?  They actually have the capacity to adsorb the vitamin D in sunlight, much like our own skin.  Next time you are cooking with mushrooms, leave them in the sunshine before you cook with them and the will have charged like a battery, ready to be consumed.  Dried Mushroom that have been dried in the sun are the very best choice – Shiitake mushrooms are particularly high in Vitamin D.

Taking Prednisone?  Get Vitamin D!

When I started to come to terms with just how much long term damage Pred was doing to my system I was alarmed, to say the least.  I was already taking Calcium to make up for the deficit created by taking pred.  But did you know that in order to metabolise calcium in your body and use it to benefit your bones, you need to be getting enough Vitamin D?  Taking Caltrate, or any other single calcium supplement without enough Vitamin D is a total waste of time!