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Dr. Thomas Brown passed away 14 years ago. He developed an innovative alternative to the traditional approach to the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) more than 50 years ago. He believed that RA was due to an infection with an organism called mycoplasma and used antibiotics as an alternative to treatment with the miracle drug of his time, prednisone.
He was able to help more than 10,000 patients recover from RA during his career. I have revised his protocol with diet, Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) and NST strategies and have helped nearly 3,000 patients recover from RA. However, I have always been seeking to avoid using the antibiotics to treat this problem. Although the antibiotics frequently worked and the six-month period of worsening that was part of Dr. Brown's protocol was virtually eliminated, I always felt like I had failed because I had to resort to the use of antibiotics.
Well, this year seems to mark the transition in my version of the antibiotic protocol. The major change seems to be the use of nutritional typing. Since we have integrated nutritional typing with full use of EFT to address the stressors that seem to be universally present in RA, we have been able to cause RA to routinely go into remission without the use of antibiotics.
To say I am excited is a serious understatement.
The following story very clearly illustrates that there is no one perfect diet for a disease. The following woman was on potent immune crippling drugs and was so devastated by dermatomyositis, a disease with many similarities to RA, that she could hardly pick up her newborn son or a gallon of milk and could not climb stairs.
She received specific diet recommendations based on her nutritional type. It is very easy to understand how a physician treating only one such patient would come to the conclusion that the diet that person was on was the "cure" for RA, when in fact nothing could be further from the truth. Another person with the same disease could quite possibly need an entirely different diet to receive any benefits, that is how powerful nutritional typing can be.
If you are not yet familiar with nutritional typing and you don't know your nutritional type, I strongly encourage you to check out the Total Health Program. It provides my entire dietary program of which nutritional typing is a central component; there is a general test and the full means to understand your nutritional type in the book, including both the types of foods and specific proportions of micronutrients (carbs, fats, proteins) that are ideal for you in particular. (Part Two then provides over 150 healthy and delicious recipes with easy instructions on how to tailor each to your nutritional type.)
There are some general principles that seem to hold true for all nutritional types and these include:
I am overjoyed beyond belief that after 14 years of treating RA I can finally offer a drug-free, effective and rapid solution for most of those with RA with the aid of nutritional typing. However, it is clear that a perfect diet alone will rarely cause the RA to go into remission.
This is because RA is an autoimmune illness. It does indeed appear to be caused by an infection, as Dr. Brown speculated. But the central issue is why did the person acquire the infection in the first place? It is my experience that this infection is usually acquired when a person has a stressful event that causes a disruption in their bioelectrical circuits, which causes an impairment in their immune system. This impairment predisposes them to developing the initial infection and also contributes to their relative inability to effectively defeat the infection.
The antibiotics clearly seem to help most people fight the infection, but, as I mention above, there are better ways that address the underlying foundational cause of the illness.
I am quite convinced that energy techniques are required to resolve this energetic disruption. Prayer can certainly be one of them. However, in my experience, most have not utilized prayer in a way that rallies their body's resources to resolve the problem.
In my experience, energy psychology techniques are very helpful in this area and can be easily integrated with prayer. I happen to use EFT in my practice and you can download my free 25-page report to find out more about this technique
However, the emotional trauma that causes RA is nearly universally quite severe and is best treated by a professional. Trying to treat this trauma by yourself is somewhat similar to a general surgeon trying to perform an appendectomy on him or herself. Although it is possible, it is not generally recommended (Interesting aside: I read an article in JAMA about 10 years ago in which a surgeon in the late 1800s actually did this. Unfortunately, he died from complications.).
Gary Craig has actually compiled a list of EFT Practitioner Referrals to help you find a practitioner in your area.
The following story was contributed by Suzanne Delich of Dyer, IN:
Imagine not having the strength or energy to care for your newborn. In December 1999 I was so sick that I could barely pick up my 15-pound baby boy or a gallon of milk without a struggle. Getting off the floor by myself was an impossibility. I couldn't even climb stairs due to the weakness in my legs. I had a red itchy rash all over my face, including my eyelids, front and back of my neck, my chest, my knuckles, and on my right knee that resembled a second-degree burn.
My sleep was so restless, due to the itchiness of the rash, that I was tired constantly. In the morning I woke to find dried blood on my face where I scratched all night long. I spent most days napping alongside of my child and immediately went to bed once my husband returned from work. I was so spacey that I couldn't think straight.
I began my healing journey in January 2000. My first stop was to my general practitioner. He looked at me and advised me that I had post-partum depression and told me to go home and exercise. Within a week I was back in his office and requested a test for Lupus. The tests came back positive for a mixed connective tissue disease. I was given little hope and referred to a rheumatologist.
My next stop was to a rheumatologist. Wow, did I feel awkward sitting in his waiting room, I was the only patient under 60. Extensive testing showed that I had dermatomyositis, an autoimmune disease that causes muscle myopathy, wasting away of muscle, extreme fatigue, and very itchy skin rashes. His prognosis was very grim. He told me I had a life-threatening illness and gave me his home telephone number to call in case I started experiencing problems breathing. His course of treatment included high doses of Prednisone and Fosamax, to build up the bone density that I would be losing by taking the Prednisone. At that point I felt trapped between a rock and a hard place. What could I do? I needed to get better so I could care for my child. So I decided to go along with his recommendations. Well, his treatment worked for awhile, but as soon as I weaned off of the Prednisone, my muscle weakness and rash came back worse than ever.
The whole time I was under his care, I started looking into other treatment options. That's when I came across a rheumatic support group online (Rheumatic.org). They promoted the benefits of the antibiotic minocin to heal rheumatic diseases, including dermatomyositis. Every day I was flooded with e-mails, some of which mentioned a holistic doctor who uses natural healing modalities to treat chronic disease. Everyone was talking about Dr. Joseph Mercola of The Optimal Wellness Center. Through corresponding with group members, and visiting mercola.com, I discovered that Dr. Mercola prescribes minocin to treat rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases. Dr. Mercola's Web site is so informative that I decided to subscribe to his free daily newsletter.
Little did I know that my next rheumy visit would be one of my last. I asked him to put me on minocin and he refused. Instead, he tried to persuade me to start incorporating methotrexate into my treatment regime. Knowing the devastating side effects of the drug I flat out refused and went home to schedule my next appointment with Dr. Mercola. I knew that it was time to find a doctor who wanted to help heal my body, not further destroy what was left of it.
In June 2001 I had my first consultation with Dr. Mercola. During this time he told me that he'd have me back on my feet within eight to 12 months. He even said it with a smile on his face and hope in his voice. That was the first time anyone gave me hope. That was the day my true healing journey began. His course of treatment included eliminating grains, sugar, and dairy from my diet and adding lots and lots of fresh organic veggies, in the form of fresh juice, cod liver oil, and healthy sources of protein into my diet. Additionally, he told me that I would be working with his therapist Jody to help me deal with emotional issues, meeting with Jordan who would examine my blood under a microscope, and discussing my diet with Jim the nutritionist.
I left the office that day with a renewed sense of hope for the future. I felt such peace and joy.
The next day I woke up confused and scared. How was I going to make such enormous lifestyle changes? Could I rise to the challenge? I pondered this for awhile; then decided to get to work. I cleared my cupboards and refrigerator of all unhealthy food and then went to the store to purchase some veggies. I came home and decided to prepare my first batch of veggie juice. It didn't taste like V-8, but it wasn't bad. Initially, I juiced inorganic veggies, soaked in vinegar to remove impurities, in my Hamilton Beach juicer. As I became more committed to juicing, I decided to buy organic produce and an Omega 8001 juicer. Juicing became much easier and less time consuming when I started using my new juicer.
Juicing has been crucial to my healing. It is full of vitamins and antioxidants to promote a healthy immune system and it helps to flush out toxins from the body. I not only juice for myself but for my whole family. My 3-year-old just loves "green juice," as he calls it. I normally juice celery, lettuce, spinach, chard or collard greens, cucumber, and garlic. I add a few carrots and/or beets to my family's juice, but refrain from adding them to mine due to the sugar content.
Following the diet was a real challenge in the beginning. The first three months were the worst. I refused to socialize outside of the home because I couldn't control my food selection. This evoked a lot of anger and depression in me because I felt so isolated. In order to deal with this, I began incorporating EFT into my healing regimen. As I became more comfortable with the program things got much better. It is now a normal part of my life.
However, whenever I become angry, depressed, or tempted to indulge in unhealthy fare, I sit down and start to tap along the EFT meridian points. EFT is a great tool; I'm so glad Jordan took the time to teach me how to use it. EFT has helped me to deal with my emotions and food cravings so I could continue to follow the program. It's a great way to eliminate negative emotions/thoughts that lead to unhealthy behavior. My husband even uses it.
In addition to EFT, I routinely use prayer and the support of my family to deal with my emotions. Fortunately, I was blessed with a wonderful husband and son. On a monthly basis, I see Jody at the wellness center. She has been instrumental in helping me to resolve negative emotions and replace them with positive ones. I don't think I could have followed such a rigorous program without help.
Another strategy I use to reach optimal wellness is to incorporate more raw foods into my diet. I add raw, organic cage-free eggs, chorella and/or spirulina to my veggie juice. I enjoy eating raw broccoli, spinach, swiss chard, tomatoes, nuts and seeds. My favorite snack is an organic Gala apple with a handful of walnuts alongside. My goal is to eventually eat 80 percent raw, since I know that cooking destroys many of the healthful benefits of food. I do eat some cooked meat, including beef, chicken, tilapia and sardines. When possible I try to purchase organic.
Real improvement started to manifest within three months of starting the program. My rash started to fade, the brain fog lifted, and I became less fatigued. I attribute this to the elimination of grains--especially wheat--and sugar, the incorporation of juice and cod liver oil into my diet, and the use of minocin to treat the dermatomyositis. Without a doubt the juicing was the most beneficial change I have made. Right after drinking a glass of juice, I feel more energetic and less fatigued. It's like drinking a triple espresso without the negative side effects of coffee.
It's now July 2003 and I am the model of good health. I no longer take the minocin and rely on my diet and a few supplements to maintain my health. All of my strength has returned, I'm full of energy, my rash is almost gone, and I am enjoying life again. I routinely juice, continue to follow the diet, exercise constantly, and practice stress management. I've never been happier. I no longer worry about being physically unable to care for my son. I feel so good that my husband and I are considering having another child. We are having a great summer.
I am so comfortable with the diet I couldn't imagine doing things differently. Occasionally, I deviate from the diet, and my body lets me know. I never want to be as sick as I was in December 1999. That realization, along with the smile on my son's beautiful face, keeps me from deviating too much. My husband and my son inspire me to do my very best.
The Paleo Diet: Should You Eat Like a "Caveman"?
To Succeed at Any Diet, You Must Know Your Nutritional Type
The Paleo Diet: Should You Eat Like a "Caveman"?
To Succeed at Any Diet, You Must Know Your Nutritional Type