Invest in ME Conference 12: First Class in Every Way
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Foods high in antioxidants/ORAC value list? My way to recovery

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by Monty79, Jul 11, 2018.

  1. Monty79

    Monty79

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    Hi all,

    just thought I would share my story with you guys. My downward spiral started many years ago when I caught mononucleosis, I was constantly ill for 10 months, feverish and could barely work. After 10 months of this ordeal I finally felt better, but never really got back to normal again. After a few years I suddenly felt worse, went to the doctor again, blood testing showed my TSH value and antibodies had skyrocketed, Hashimoto's disease. I had to take high amounts of levothyroxine medication (133 mcg) and really thought my thyroid was gone for good. The medication didn't help at all though, I barely could stand up and do some housework at this point.

    Last year I did an elimination diet (AIP diet) and found out I can't tolerate wheat (gluten) and corn. This helped a lot, I felt so much better after going gluten and corn free. Then I read about leaky gut syndrome and started to make my own home-made milk kefir with real grains, which is supposed to be the most probiotic food on the planet. (I still love the stuff in my daily muesli with rolled oats, lots of cinnamon and blueberries).

    At about the same time I read an interesting article about herbs and spices that are antimicrobial and thought this could help with the leaky gut syndrome and pathogenic bacteria/candida in the gut. I began to take one tbsp of clove powder, triphala, turmeric, cumin seeds, cinnamon, and dried oregano daily.

    This was the last piece of the puzzle for me. After a few weeks of taking these herbs my thyroid started to work again, I'm free of medication for 10 months now. I don't know if I still have antibodies or not as I didn't go back to the doctor to test for it, I just know that I finally, finally feel good again. No fatigue anymore, I'm exercising again (I'm running again! I so missed running! lol) and I'm currently looking for a new job!

    I did some research and these spices and herbs that I'm taking are not only antimicrobial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory, they all are also very high in the ORAC value list of antioxidant foods. I'm eating a lot of nuts and berries like blueberries and other foods that are high on this list (drinking cold brew green tea and hibiscus tea instead of only water) and I'm wondering if this is the reason for my improvement?

    Or maybe I was "only" suffering from leaky gut syndrome and the antimicrobial properties of these herbs and spices helped to wipe out the bad bacteria/candida together with going gluten/corn free and the milk kefir?

    Maybe it's all of it together, I really don't know. But I'm believing that the high amount of antioxidant foods that I'm taking really was the reason for my recovery, and I'm thinking food is still very much underestimated in our illness.

    Just thought I would share my story with you guys. Good luck to all of you!
     
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  2. Runner5

    Runner5 Senior Member

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    I've had a very similar experience! (And also love to run! So Yeah Monty!)

    I load up on spices in my green after workout smoothie too! Turmeric, clove, black pepper (which helps absorption), allspice, cinnamon, maca. I include a number of nuts and seeds, ground flax, chia, a couple of Brazille nuts for the selenium, a nodule of fresh ginger, a beet, some raw broccoli, 3 cups of greens, usually a cup of blueberries or other berries (I switch out fruits occasionally), a beet or two. I always put a tablespoon or two of apple cider vinegar in my smoothie too. I toss in some spirulina and take Sun Chlorella.

    I also have Hibiscus tea but only drink it in the morning. I have a 'sport drink' high in B12 in the a.m. - I really hydrate good before I go out - Then I go workout for awhile.

    I usually eat a bag or two of baby carrots a day, sometimes more. I eat garlic in everything now and I used to not be able to digest it. The range of foods I can eat has grown little by little.

    I do use a wide range of digestive enzymes, probiotics and crossing my fingers. My gut still has a long way to go.

    I can't eat oatmeal or oats and never whole grains during the day or I get what I just call a "sleep attack" and I'm utterly done. I hope though that someday I'll be able to digest more foods. I do not digest fats well or protein. I don't digest dairy, but I've always been allergic to it. I did try a wide variety of yogurts and kefir but with no luck. I have thought about making my own soy yogurt. I do digest soy okay thankfully. (Without digesting meat, fat or dairy it's not a big stretch to figure I just went ahead and signed myself up as a Vegan ;-P haha, I take it very easy on my digestive system, no steak, no fried eggs etc.) Everyone's intolerances seem to be different and I think that has really lead science around and around by the nose without them figuring this thing out.

    I think that when you get so many food intolerances it's just a big red sign that says your digestion system is totally borked. I do think the natural foods help to rebuild it though. (Worth noting I did have my gallbladder checked out and it was okay on ultrasound).

    There was a guy on Joe Rogan with such a bad dysbiosis of the gut he had resorted to only eating beef as his one food item. Beef and salt. (All good until scurvy shows up?) That's so desperate and I felt really bad for him, I know how it feels to think -- there is NOTHING left I can eat without getting sick and I just want a normal life.

    This GI stuff can put a person really behind the 8 ball for sure.

    I'm up and about now as long as I don't eat grain and I am on a working out streak - day 11! I'm working on a Couch to 5K app and have worked up to a route of 4 miles.

    Not doing anything weird though, just very high fiber for the most part and high anti=oxident. I took supplements until I was blue or green in the face with no luck. I take probiotics but suspect they're junk. I take a complex B12, I take iron when I'm on my period, I take L-Tyrosine and L-Glutamine, and an EPA/DHA every other day. I'm also trying to get outside to get vitamin D. I follow Dr. Greger's Daily Dozen.

    A lot of people have told me exactly what I used to say, "I can't digest healthy food!" And that's really a bad sign because we all need good food coming into our bodies, good fuel. I used to sit around perplexed -- I could eat McD's and be FINE but if I tried any other sort of food I was in trouble. Well, I had a bad gut way back then but as it progressed and became more diseased finally my body just was so under-nourished that it gave out. I do have some classic signs of vitamin B deficiencies.

    I have had some pretty strong antibiotics over the years including ten days in the hospital on IV drip. I started getting sick as an infant though with food intolerances and that just persisted and got worse over time. Now I'm trying to build a new GI that can handle food a little bit better. :D

    I guess my anthem is FIBER FIBER FIBER haha, and yeah I get gas, bloat and some GI discomfort but that's hardly new for me. The thing is I can get up and get back to work for the first time in five years. I'll take the bloat as a small price to pay and part of the process.
     
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  3. Monty79

    Monty79

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    Wow, thinking about it, I've had to take some pretty strong antibiotics too after a very bad scooter accident in my early 20's when I was in hospital for my broken elbow? Maybe these antibiotics were responsible too for my leaky gut syndrome, I really didn't think about this until you reminded me of this accident, thank you for reminding me.

    May I ask if you tried taking foods high in the ORAC value list?

    I'm wondering if anybody on this board got better after taking high amounts of foods high in antioxidants?

    All I can say is that I'm doing so much better since taking high amounts of these spices and herbs high in antioxidants daily, blueberries, nuts etc...

    I've tried to search in studies, but there are only a few done with mices (what a surprise):
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/13677625med/13677625

    The only thread I was able to find on this board about antioxidants was this one:
    https://forums.phoenixrising.me/index.php?threads/antioxidants-save-your-money.27059/

    I personally feel so much better since taking cloves and triphala powder, cinnamon, turmeric (with black pepper), dried oregano, cumin seeds, 1 tsp a day... I'm taking them for half a year now and I'm feeling so much better.

    Of course I know this is just my personal way to recovery, but I'm wondering if I'm just the only one that got so much better after taking high amounts of these spices and herbs for some time? Anybody else tried this?
     
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  4. LINE

    LINE

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    Great news and thanks for sharing!

    Yes and they help the Nrf2 pathways which is up and coming research. Turns out the Nrf2 pathways supports glutathione production which is the one molecule that is seldom talked about on PR and likely the one molecule that can do very good things for the body. Glutathione is rapidly used up by the immune system and low levels then force auto immune conditions since glutathione regulates the immune response. In addition, glutathione works in the detoxification channels, so low glutathione means weakened detox which leads to cellular dysfunction.

    As the other poster mentioned about taking turmeric which has helped, I take that with cinnamon (ceylon) and paprika (or any capiscum spice).

    As I researched, the spices are largely antimicrobial and as you mentiooned antiinflammatory and antioxidant as well. I just read a research paper about hibiscus and its strong ability to kill a number of infections and was better than a few antibiotics for that specific pathogen. I buy teas such as Tazo then brew them and turn them into iced drinks and add a bit of stevia for quasi sweetness and it too has been shown to kill pathogens. Many of these teas contain the good polyphenols which is a very good antioxidant.

    If you read the ingredients of Tazo Passion and Wild Sweet Orange, you will be surprised at the medical research on these ingredients. I have heard that cultures that use plenty of spices have some of the lowest cancer rates.
     
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  5. Runner5

    Runner5 Senior Member

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    I love those Tazo teas and Stash. I drink a lot of herbal tea. I really like Stash liquorice tea, but have heard it can be bad for some people.

    I looked at the ORAC scale, I eat everything on the scale except kidney beans and artichokes, but everything else nearly daily. Like cranberries, they're grown up here and I boil them with a little date sugar and some wild blueberries with clove and spices and then put it over a sweet potato with some pistachios. I eat dried Gojis as a snack. I love dark chocolate. Grew up eating pecans and I have them or walnuts every day.

    My period started though and that has been a real set back for me. I woke up and the fatigue was back, and like anyone else - I don't know how long it will stick around. Taking more Chlorella, Iron & B1 though to help combat it.

    I always feel like this illness is a loop. Like one thing leads to another leads to another and it's very hard to get on top of, and some have said it adapts - which it might.
     
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  6. Monty79

    Monty79

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    Thank you very much for your reply, I have no idea about this Nrf2 pathway or what it really means, lol, but I will google it and try to understand how it works. All I can say is that these spices and herbs in high amounts (!) helped me so much, I'm feeling like a new person since taking them.

    Me too, I'm taking 1 tsp of turmeric a day with a bit of ground black pepper (piperine helps with bioavailability). I'm taking clove powder that I'm mixing with the turmeric powder, it's just easier to wash it down with a glass of water that way as clove powder alone is really gross. And I'm adding a LOT of cinnamon (ceylon and cassia, both have their health benefits and are very high in antioxidants, 3-4 grams a day) to my morning muesli with rolled oats and home made milk kefir with blueberries.

    Yes, I'm adding a bit of stevia too to my cold brew teas. I was really surprised to find out that you don't have to brew teas with hot water first, you just can add a few bags of your favorite tea/hibiscus or green tea into a jar of cold water, put it in your fridge over night, let it sit in there and have iced tea in the morning. It's really as super simple as that, no need to heat water first. https://www.marthastewart.com/1503825/avoid-bitter-bite-cold-brew-tea

    Thank you very much for your reply, and I'm really looking forward to see what science has to say about this Nrf2 pathway in the future. I'm off now to google about it, maybe I will understand some of it, lol. Thank you!
     
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  7. ljimbo423

    ljimbo423 Senior Member

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    Cassia cinnamon is high in coumarin, which can be toxic in high doses. Although ceylon is very low in coumarin content.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coumarin

    Jim
     
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  8. brenda

    brenda Senior Member

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    :thumbsup:
     
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  9. LINE

    LINE

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    Something else to look into is hemp oil (not marijuana, just cold pressed hemp from Nutiva etc). Hemp is a versatile natural antibiotic and has proven to defeat antibiotic resistant organisms which is a big issue. I have used this along with some antimicrobial herbs with good results.

    https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/pptu/got-pot-t4323231.html

    (btw, this is a forum I started for protozoa parasites, so if anyone needs help with those, let me know. Sorry the forum is a little sloppy).
     
  10. Monty79

    Monty79

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    Thank you, I've heard that cassia cinnamon may have its benefits for blood sugar control, but as ceylon cassia has the same amount of antioxidants and there's no risk of liver damage, I will switch to ceylon.
     
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  11. Monty79

    Monty79

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  12. brenda

    brenda Senior Member

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    Thanks for that tip. My favourite plant based doctors are Greger and Fuhrman.
     
  13. Monty79

    Monty79

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    2 weeks ago this research showed up on one of my subscribed subreddits about the Nrf2 pathways, what a coincidence:

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306987718305723#b0925

    It's a long read but very interesting.

    So far I'm really feeling so much better on my strict antioxidant rich diet. I even started to forage wild berries like elderberries and rowan, rosehip and hawthorn berries making jam and syrup out of them. Maybe these berries contain antioxidants and polyphenols research doesn't pay much attention to it.
     
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  14. David Jackson

    David Jackson Senior Member

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    Awesome thread.

    I've seen a ton of improvement eating at around 50 - 60% raw food since last October. Which is basically smoothies with heaps of fruit, berries, greens, seeds, etc. Rest of the diet vegan, but looking to transition to a 90% raw vegan diet, with only a few cooked meals per week.

    I'm just curious, @Monty79, how did you take that much of so many spices? A whole tablespoon each day? Did you just add them to your food, or just mix them in water and drink them?

    Seriously thinking about trying whatever you suggest...
     
  15. pamojja

    pamojja Senior Member

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    Beside in food, I also take them 3 times a day on empty stomach in a glass of water. After reading a study that Indian man get about 9.5 g a day in spices, I'm less worried about that being too much

    http://phenol-explorer.eu/ is a database with polyphenol-condent of most foods.
     
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  16. David Jackson

    David Jackson Senior Member

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    I had never thought to do it like that, but it makes some sense.

    Now I just gotta find out where to get some cheap spices, because I could burn through a lot, doing this.
     
  17. LINE

    LINE

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    I buy in bulk (1lb bags) which are organic. Starwest has been a trusted source for me. For a 1lb bag of organic turmeric the price is $12 which will last a long time.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2018
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  18. pamojja

    pamojja Senior Member

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    Already took the glasses of water with teaspoonfuls of ascorbic acid anyway..
     
  19. David Jackson

    David Jackson Senior Member

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    Yeah, me too.

    Must be an interesting tasting concoction....
     
  20. pamojja

    pamojja Senior Member

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    Yea, can't take it without some stevia extract added. Especially since it also contains all other bulk amino powders (lysine, arginine, NAC..), Ayurvedic herbs (Ashwagandha, Neem, Kalmegh..), some MCT for oiling the getting it down..:nerd:
     

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