Posts Tagged ‘Coconut Oil’

The Itch of Eczema

???????????????????????????????Spring has sprung across the United States but on the very first full day of spring in Minnesota winter reared its icy cold soul and surprised us with snow the next day. This reversal of the seasons is expected here in the tundra, so if spring gives you snow I guess you might as well make a snowman (or so my grandson thought).

As the earth yawned and lifted its winter weary head earlier in March I optimistically started thinking that this spring might bring something new and different in to my life. You know what I mean, something with flair and perhaps exciting? Well something new happened and it was a flare but somehow the exciting part got lost in translation.

Eczema Goes Walk About

That’s right it was a flare, an all out attack on my epidermal layer, eczema on crack or some such thing. My eczema that previously had partied only on my legs decided to ask all its friends to come and visit, so they could itch together and cause crimson exudate. Ugh.

Anyone with eczema knows the pleasure of the initial itch, it must be akin to the way addicts feel the first time they take an illicit drug. It is intensely pleasurable but there is a fine line that can and will be crossed and pretty soon you regret your weakness. Once you start itching your eczema you cannot stop and very soon you regret that initial itch much like a junkie must regret they ever took that first hit.

Stop the Itch

What does one do when a problem arises? Honestly? I turn to the internet and others who have suffered a similar fate. I also did consult with my homeopath, Dr. Kim Lane. She suggested Rhux Tox and/or Urtica Urens and I started one and then the other but while I waited for the remedies to kick in I needed something for the itch. I really wanted instant relief and I didn’t want to apply steroid creams having read too many horror stories of steroid withdrawal.

After reading all the information I could get my hands on I came upon a solution that made perfect sense to me, apple cider vinegar and coconut oil.

One more use for apple cider vinegar and coconut oil

Yes, yet another use for household ingredients like apple cider vinegar and coconut oil. Apparently apple cider vinegar sprayed on the itchies takes the itch away and coconut oil serves as a protective layer and moisturizer. Not just any ACV will do but the kind that has a mother and is alive with probiotics, so off I went to my cupboard and pulled out the Bragg’s ACV and poured it in to a spray bottle I had on hand.

I sprayed it on every itchy spot I could see and while the sting was intense the itching immediately subsided. The sting was so much better than the itch I cannot tell you and for about 24 hours every time the itch threatened to be scratched I sprayed more ACV. Each time, after the ACV was dry I applied liberal coats of coconut oil.

The next day the positive results were noticeable. The patches that were really bad had scabbed over, the itch had greatly diminished. The best news was the partying stopped, no new attendees showed up or if they did they got sprayed and chased off.

I am sure the homeopathic remedies were doing most of the work but the ACV and coconut oil were a God send. This past weekend I could even shave my legs, something I haven’t been able to do without intense itching for months.

Krisinsight

I know there are many facets to eczema and other skin conditions that plague millions of people worldwide. I do not think for one minute that all you need do is spray some apple cider vinegar on your skin and eczema and all its causes will go away. What I did want to share is that apple cider vinegar and coconut oil took away the itch of eczema and hastened the healing for me. If you have no known allergies to either ingredient, they will do no harm and they might just help.

Until next time, take care of yourself and I hope spring brings you something exciting with a flair and not a flare.

Santé,

Kris

 

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Heat, Rapid Heartbeats and Me

IMG_1917 (2)I wasn’t going to post anything this week because I am at my mountain retreat, or as one of my dentists called it, my compound. It’s no compound but it is a retreat, a small dollhouse cabin with a blue tin roof  in the middle of the National Forest in Fairfield, Idaho. When we hike around our land and look back at our tiny footprint of a house in the middle of this gigantic  mountain it always leaves me in wonder.

That said, this time it is hotter than I remember it ever being. It is a scorcher everywhere in the west, southwest. I read today that planes aren’t taking off from LAX because of the extreme heat. It seems planes can’t get aloft as easily when it is hot and must either take a much smaller load or not fly at all. I think I must be related to airplanes because this heat is grounding me.

The thyroid person and debauchery

Ever since I started the CT3M my oral temperatures have been coming up nicely but I am now always warm. I really don’t know if this means I am slightly hyper or if this is just the way people feel when their body temperature at the end of the day is 99. What I do know is even though I am better medicated I am still not as “normal” as I want to be nor able to handle what seems like normal activity to everyone else.

The past day we were really warm for a mountain location and by bedtime last night I was just miserable. During the day we went to an altitude of 9100 feet which may have had some effect. We took a two-hour hike early in the day and that left me feeling slightly drained. While we were at 9100 feet I had two drinks containing alcohol (gin and tonic to be exact) because they just seemed refreshing at the time but they may have had an effect.

When we got home (back to 6000 feet) from our day of play at a slightly higher altitude in Ketchum, Idaho we had another icy drink and that may have had some effect. Whatever the cause I think the effect is a bit of a storm for my body and it isn’t up to the upset. I knew it when I went to bed and  I know it now at midnight as I write this blog entry heat, debauchery, high altitude and thyroid disease do not make for a happy body.

What I do when I wake up with a rapid heartbeat

My main issue as I write is that I am up at midnight with an elevated heart beat. When I was eating gluten and not being particularly careful I would wake up with this horrible rapid heartbeat, a pounding head and the overwhelming feeling of sweatiness. In the past few months, after swearing off gluten entirely (not even in lotions or potions) I have managed to avoid these episodes.

What I have now is not that miserable. When I awoke I was sweaty and my heart beat was elevated but the pounding head wasn’t an issue and the rapid beat was only mildly elevated; perhaps as in a hot flash. I was having rather vivid dreams but nothing disturbing and when I finally got up I realized I had been dreaming the book I had read until I turned off the light, as in I was dreaming every word and every action of the pages I had been reading. I also needed to go to the bathroom and I won’t bore you with details but this type of evacuation is not abnormal when my heart is beating fast.

Anyway the only thing I can do when this happens is get up, drink 1 teaspoon of Celtic Sea Salt in water and wait to get tired again. Now, as I always do when I am awake and it seems the rest of the world is sleeping,  I wonder if anyone else has experienced this reaction and what they do when it happens.

Krisinsight

There isn’t much insight from me at midnight on a too warm, too still night. I am guessing this bit of a storm my body is experiencing is a combination of factors, no one of which would be a problem but combined they add up to a sleepless night. Everyone has a sleepless night now and then and as my mother-in-law told my SU when he was a sleepless little boy, no one ever died of not sleeping one night.

Before I close (and hopefully go back to bed) I did want to share a snack idea with you that I think is really tasty and good for your thyroid.

Toasted Chips of Coconut

Heat your oven to 350°. Once the oven is hot place the coconut oil in a 9×13 pan and melt it in the oven. Add the coconut chips and toss well to coat the chips with coconut oil. If you are a thyroid person, salt liberally and toss again. If your adrenals don’t need salt, salt less liberally. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Watch carefully as the chips will brown very quickly. As soon as they are lightly golden remove from the oven and toss again, adding more salt if you want. Let cool in the pan and then store in an airtight container.

The taste is salty/sweet and satisfies that need for a snack such as chips or popcorn in a slightly more healthful way.

On that note, she says with a yawn, I think I will leave my garage (where we cook and have our computers) and head back to the dollhouse. Night, night.

Santé,

Kris

 

Christmas Spice and Everything Nice

There were two weeks left until Christmas and the diet breakers were everywhere taunting and teasing. Editorials were bitter and myopic and spirits were low. It was time for happiness and sweet cheer and one night as the family slept I turned to recipes adapted from traditional ones but fit for my intake of today. At that moment, deep in the cold of the long winter’s night, I decided that my Christmas gift for everyone would be a holiday so sweet, so cherished it would go down as one of the best ever. Well at least I could offer some tastebud stimulation without the guilt of the usual Christmas goodies full of trans fats, HFCS and calories with no redemption.

Todays offering came to me by way of Mercola.com. Yes, but not from Joe Mercola it was discovered in one of the forums discussing the virtue of dark chocolate. The entry came from the site Natural Health Strategies and was listed under “How to Make Chocolate at Home: A Naturally Healthy Coconut Oil Recipe”.

Christmas Guilt Free Chocolate

5 Tablespoons of Virgin Coconut Oil

5 Tablespoons of Unsweetened Organic Cocoa Powder

5 Tablespoons of finely grated Organic Coconut

1-2 Tablespoons of sugar or sweetener of choice

1 pinch of Celtic sea salt

Optional Ingredients

Natural vanilla

Pinch of powdered cayenne pepper

Whole chopped soaked, sprouted and dehydrated nuts and or seeds

Fresh mint

Dried fruit pieces

Organic Cocoa nibs

Here is what I did to combine the ingredients for today’s batch:

I sifted the cocoa and then added finely ground maple sugar but any kind of sweetener could be used and I am going to try Manuka honey next. To this powdered mix I added 1/2 Tablespoon organic Turmeric and thought about adding organic dehydrated Acai powder but didn’t. I also ground up the coconut as I am not fond of shredded coconut in chocolate. I warmed my Tropical Traditions Coconut oil in its jar utilizing the sink full of warm water I was washing dishes in and poured 5 tablespoons of oil in to the dry ingredients along with a 1/2 teaspoon of homemade vanilla. Mixing as quickly as possible the ingredients became a smooth velvety pool of chocolate and I poured it in to a pan lined with natural waxed paper, smoothing carefully with a spatula. My house is quite cool, so the mixture began to harden almost immediately and I quickly sprinkled some Celtic Sea Salt Flower of the Ocean crystals over the top. I popped it in the refrigerator, cooled it for a few minutes and then scored it to make it easier to break apart when it is hard (about an hour).

You can find more detailed instructions on Natural Health Strategies but this is what worked for me this morning. I will enjoy a bite of chocolate without all the guilt I usually have. There isn’t any soy lecithin (not good for my hypothyroid condition) just healthy coconut oil (good for my thyroid as it is full of lauric acid). Chocolate has been proven to relax the imbiber and a friend of mine swears by its ability to help her sleep at night when ingested in the afternoon (she says it also makes her a little, shall we say, crabby but good sleep is the reward). Turmeric has more good qualities than I can go in to here and it has little taste. It retains its healing properties when not cooked, so this method preserves it in its raw state. the sweetener was minimal, so the glycemic index should not be a problem. I think raw manuka honey would add yet another layer of goodness to the mix, so it is logically the next sweetener to use. I also made a few truffles with the mix, dusting them in organic cocoa as they cooled.

Next week a recipe for some crispy, melt in your mouth Cheese Crackers that are gluten free, transfat free and so good the jar is full for only a short time as my spouse who snickers at all of my gluten free ideas cannot leave them alone. See you next week. In the meantime, you can get out your mixing bowl and make a simple chocolate bar or truffle, have your chocolate fix and enjoy it too.