1. Patients launch a $1.27 million crowdfunding campaign for ME/CFS gut microbiome study.
    Check out the website, Facebook and Twitter. Join in donate and spread the word!
Patient Experience: "What Bronllys taught me about pacing."
In 2012, Maya, who had tried to cope with ME/CFS on her own for many years, attended a pain management centre in Wales, U.K., and is now able to achieve more through pacing and acceptance, than she had been able to before the course...
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  1. slayadragon

    slayadragon Senior Member

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    I'm curious about the extent to which people here have experimented with scrupulously organic diets, to see if it makes a difference for them.

    I never felt like organic food mattered a lot to me, until I started eating _only_ organic food. Now when I stray from the path and eat something that is not organic, I often feel quite sick. On the other hand, as long as I am eating organic, I seem to be able to eat just about anything without getting sick (including things like sugar and wheat).

    Moreover, my reactions to environmental toxins have gone down substantially since I've started eating all-organic. I'm not sure how much of the decrease to attribute to the organic diet (since I've been detoxing aggressively also), but I think that it may be related.

    I'm increasingly suspicious that I am reacting to some toxin (probably Roundup) in non-organic food in the same way that people with this disease react to things like gluten or mold. That would explain why I didn't really feel much difference until I went really extreme in terms of avoidance.

    I'm just one case though. So I'd like to hear more experiences, if folks have them.

    Thanks much for sharing.

    Best, Lisa
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  2. slayadragon

    slayadragon Senior Member

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    Note that I've yet to hear of an "organic" supplement brand. So pursuing an all-organic diet really would involve dropping all supplements and perhaps all drugs too. Which I actually have done. I just don't feel like taking any of those pills any more. They feel really poisonous to me. It took me a long time to posit that maybe the problem was that they weren't organic though.
    golden likes this.
  3. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    I ate mainly organic food for a couple of years. Although some individual items were better coloured and much more tasty than the non-orangic it made no difference at all to my core ME symptoms (viral, infections, pots, PEM). Even now I try to buy as much organic food as I can afford because of some of the very good quality and taste I've found.
  4. Jarod

    Jarod Senior Member

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    I've sometimes wondered if organic food was somehow destroying the "good bacteria" in the gut? That might allow in more damage to the stomach etc?

    edit: pesticides destroying good bacteria
    golden likes this.
  5. slayadragon

    slayadragon Senior Member

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    I'm a little perplexed by the idea that organic food might be destructive to the good bacteria in the gut. What do you mean by that?

    To the contrary, there is an increasing amount of evidence that Roundup kills off normal bacteria in both the soil and in the gut, allowing weird bacteria and fungi to grow amuck. So avoiding that pesticide (which could be accomplished by just eating no GMO's even if strict organic is not followed) would seem to have the potential of improving gut health.
    golden and redhummingbird like this.
  6. anne_likes_red

    anne_likes_red Senior Member

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    Hey Lisa,
    I buy only organic vegetables (or grow them), oils, dairy, and fruit, and organic gluten free grains or grain products for those in my family who eat them. Pork products are organic, but for lamb, beef and eggs I settle for pastured and antibiotic free. No guarantees there that round up or some similar nasty thing isn't in the chain somewhere.
    What really throws me off an organic path though is all the things I eat from the sea! I can't see a solution for that coming soon...and I eat seafood pretty much on a daily basis. And seaweed.
    I don't think I've ever eaten a 100% organic diet..except maybe when I juiced organic produce for a while and only consumed that.

    I heard you're doing well! Great to hear! :) :) :)
    Anne.
  7. justy

    justy Senior Member

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    Hi Lisa, some years ago, when i went into a prolonged remmision (to near normal functioning, but not 100%) i started eating a wholly organic diet - i hadnt been able to afford it up until this point. I even bought organic herbs and spices, ketchup etc, went the whole hog for me and my family and we kept this up for about 5 years (until we could no longer afford it) during this time i would sometimes eat something non organic, especially in a restaurant etc - but not even oncve a week. What i found was that after about a year i realised i hadnt had a cold or infection in all that time. Before that my immune system was rubbish and i would constantly get colds, flus, lung infections etc. I definately felt the healthiest i had ever felt - and i DID eat some sugar, wheat etc - so long as it was organic.

    It definately felt like a noticeable difference to me. My new husband (who was paying for all of this) had been eating organic for years and was extremely healthy.

    We can no loger afford this kind of diet - i dont even buy organic fruit and veg, but we do grow as much as we can in the summer months, and this is totally organic. I know i dont metabolise toxins very well, and have worked hard in the past two - 3 years to cut out shampoos and washing powders etc with chemicals in, but i would struggle with affording the organic doet again. BUT you have reminded me of the importance of this for all my family so i may trey a bit harder where i can - but i suspect, as you have found, that going the whole hog will make the most difference.

    All the best, Justy.
    Jarod likes this.
  8. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    I feel better sticking with minimally or non toxic foods and chemicals. I just switched to a non
    toxic laundry soap and noticed a slight improvement. If I had to guess, I'd say my inflamatory
    markers went down even more.

    The biggest change I saw in my cfs was when I gave up gluten. But I'm a dq2 and a celiac so that really
    was a no brainer. Other food intolerances trigger my shiners, phlegm in throat, fibro pain, ibs,
    vulvodynia, etc.

    While this all helps, I suspect I'm just avoiding mast cell triggers and need to get these under
    control. I'm working on this but it's taking me awhile. Tc .. X
  9. Jarod

    Jarod Senior Member

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    thanks. You answered my question. I stated that backwards. :) bad gut/brain day.

    A CSF'er mentioned that he considered organic food to be the best thing in his treatment program.

    I used to go to a really awesome restaurant. It was all organic and the food prepared very carefully not to destroy any of the nutrients or flora. I went in feeling terrible and came out feeling like I had just been to a spa. It was pretty amazing. There was temhpe in the dish and that may have been what did it.

    Best I'm doing now is avoiding the processed foods.
  10. slayadragon

    slayadragon Senior Member

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    Yes, I'm doing better than I ever imagined that I might. Mold does not seem to be a problem any more, at least not in the way that it was before. (Surely if I moved into a blatantly bad building I eventually could make myself sick again, but that would be just plain stupid.) I do run across things in the outdoor environment that have an effect on me (mostly temporarily make me feel woozy), but that's becoming less of a problem too. I do still feel sluggish in the mornings -- my body processes toxins like mad during the night and then it takes a couple of coffee enemas in the morning to rid my body of them. But all in all, I feel close to truly recovered.

    The non-organic (or, I think, Roundup contaminated) food does seem to have a big effect on me though. That being the case, I am a little surprised at how few people with this disease have tried an all-organic diet. I don't think it would compensate for living in a really bad place, but I do think it may be something that might be really helpful nevertheless.

    Of course, I never tried it until recently either.
  11. slayadragon

    slayadragon Senior Member

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    XChoc -- I have been using Andrea Fabry's handmade 100% organic personal care products and am unreasonably in love with them. So I need to get hold of some of her laundry soap. I have some handmade laundry soap from someone else, without chemicals, but I feel sure that the ingredients are not organic. And that makes a difference, I think.

    http://momsaware.org/online-store.html
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  12. dannybex

    dannybex Senior Member

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    I think exactly the opposite. There are some 'soil-based-organisms' found to actually implant in the gut and help digest/degrade chemicals, even pesticides in the environment.

    Here's a link to just one species:

    http://microbewiki.kenyon.edu/index.php/Arthrobacter

    "Arthrobacter has also been found to degrade agricultural pesticides in conjunction with several strains of Streptomyces in a synergistic relationship. Together, they are able to completely degrade the organophosphate insecticide diazinon."

    LIsa, I agree -- there don't seem to be many officially organic supplements, but at least there are increasing numbers of them that state they don't contain GMOs.

    p.s. I just read that Jarod may have meant something else in his original post, which I can totally understand and relate to...but just wanted to point out the possible benefits of some SBOs.
    Jarod likes this.
  13. redhummingbird

    redhummingbird

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    That's great that you feel close to recovered.

    I have never heard of Roundup so will have to google it. I have gone all organic while living in a bad place but it didn't help because the mold was so rampant.

    Thanks for being a pioneer in terms of trying different treatments including mold avoidance. : )
  14. Jarod

    Jarod Senior Member

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    Thanks Danny, Good to see you.

    When eating organic there are certain fruits and veggies that have more pesticides than others. It seems like the list may vary at times.....

    There is the dirty dozen..... (best to eat organic if possible)

    • Peaches
    • Apples
    • Sweet Bell Peppers
    • Celery
    • Nectarines
    • Strawberries
    • Cherries
    • Pears
    • Grapes (Imported)
    • Spinach
    • Lettuce
    • Potatoes

    the clean fifteen.....(safetest to eat without pesticides)

    1. Onions
    2. Sweet Corn
    3. Pineapple
    4. Avocado Avocado
    5. Asparagus
    6. Sweet peas
    7. Mango
    8. Eggplant
    9. Cantaloupe (domestic)
    10. Kiwi
    11. Cabbage
    12. Watermelon
    13. Sweet Potatoes
    14. Grapefruit
    15. Mushrooms

    Read more: http://www.thedailygreen.com/healthy-eating/eat-safe/dirty-dozen-foods#ixzz2IIKq8QHE
    Read more: http://www.thedailygreen.com/healthy-eating/eat-safe/dirty-dozen-foods#ixzz2IIKm4hkb

    http://www.thedailygreen.com/healthy-eating/eat-safe/dirty-dozen-foods#slide-20
  15. Jarod

    Jarod Senior Member

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    Foods most likely to contain GMOs Foods least likely to contain GMOs

    * Fresh corn
    * Fresh papaya
    * Cornbread mix
    * Corn meal
    * Soy flour
    * Veggie sausages
    * Tortilla chips and flavored tortilla chips
    * Processed foods (and those with high-fructose corn syrup)
    * Puffed corn snacks
    * Meatballs, burgers with soy protein
    * Soy-based protein drinks and powders

    http://www.nwrage.org/content/which-foods-contain-gmos
    * Anything labeled GMO-free
    * Organic anything
    * If corn, try blue corn or sweet corn
    * Roma tomatoes
    * Pop or candy with fruit or natural sweeteners, instead of high-fructose corn syrup.
    * Potatoes are a good carbohydrate source (not GE as yet)
    * Food that's not processed
    * Popcorn
  16. Jarod

    Jarod Senior Member

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  17. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Hi slaya,

    We have a thread in the mast cell section on avoiding contact allergens.

    I'm finding 7th generation products, dish soap, toilet paper, paper towels, wipes, etc work for me. I'm using that african black soap
    successfully for now. I reacted to dr brenners. I'm still looking at all of these tho so thanks
    for the tip. Fwiw, I don't do well with soap bars.

    Avoiding toxic feminine hygeine products makes a big difference for me too. I hate to think
    how many women are using these not realizing where their symptoms are coming from. My gyn wasn't any
    help with this. Tc .. X
  18. Research 1st

    Research 1st

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    Same experience here. It would make sense you're so ill by now with ME anyway that reducing background pesticide load is unlikely to make a measurable difference in your health by going organic. Certainly organic it is preferable to cheap mass produced chemical ridden food, but as ever it all comes down to cost and availability. At least now you can buy organic food mail order and have it delivered to your door if you're housebound but that is rather costly to do long term.
  19. August59

    August59 Daughters High School Graduation

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    I have always been curious of the impact from some of these "organic farms" we have now, used to be regular farms utilizing pesticides and insectisides. It would seem to me from a systemic point of view that these fruits and vegetables would be considered non-organic for a period of years until the old chemicals were finally leeched out of the soil.

    If you can't find organic apples and maybe peaches washing them good and rubbing them with "Scotchbrite" will take the wax off of the apples and will really de-fuzz a peach really well. Just a thought!
  20. caledonia

    caledonia

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    There's a great documentary on GMO's called Genetic Roulette.

    GMO products
    corn
    soybeans
    canola
    sugar beets
    papayas

    Corn and soybeans are hidden in all kinds of processed foods. Canola is basically canola oil. Safer oils would be olive oil, butter or coconut oil. To avoid sugar beets buy only cane sugar. If it just says sugar, then it's beet sugar. Of course, the cane sugar costs more.

    That's basically it (for now). California tried to get GMO's labeled but it failed. The documentary did say that they had developed GMO wheat, but consumers raised a ruckus and it wasn't brought to market.
    slayadragon likes this.

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