Hi Everyone! I hope you are enjoying the sunny weather!
I have decided to take my blog in a new direction focusing on Vegan Cooking and not on the ME/CFS so much. I will still have all my ME/CFS posts on my blog that you can browse through. Or if you want nutrition and lifestyle advice for your ME/CFS you can book an appointment for a nutrition consultation with me from September 2016.
I aim to keep posting vegan recipes and plan to start an online shop soon delivering vegan cakes, snacks and vegan clothes around the UK! The new name for my blog is katesvegancooking.co.uk.
Thank you for visiting me site! I appreciate it!
Recently I received a comment from someone who has just been diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. They asked me “Is there anything that you would recommend for someone in the early stages of ME? Is there anything you wish you had known in the beginning that would have helped in the long run?” Thank you for your questions Venture Beneath The Skies. Here are my top 10 things to know in the early stages of ME/CFS:
- Give yourself time – ME/CFS takes time to heal. It does not just appear out of nowhere. Ill health has built up gradually over time due to poor diet, unresolved emotional traumas and many other lifestyle factors. It requires time to peel away the layers of the past that brought you to this dis-ease and regain your health.
- Get support – it is a good idea to get some support from your family who can care for you while you are ill and give you emotional and financial support. You may have to move back home to live with your parents. You could apply for disability living allowance.
- Don’t rely on doctors – doctors do not understand the holistic nature of ME/CFS which is an illness of body/mind/emotions/soul. They will give you drugs which will suppress the symptoms but will not treat the root cause of the illness. You need to spend time doing the inner healing work.
- Visit a nutritionist – there are often gut problems such as Candida overgrowth in ME/CFS which can cause the brain fog. Nutritionists can do food intolerance tests and will give you a diet plan to support your health as well as a supplement plan to get rid of the infection.
- Glandular fever – most ME/CFS begins by catching glandular fever/Epstein-Barr/mononucleosis virus. It is likely that your immune system was already weak due to stress and unresolved past emotional traumas, then you caught the virus and your body is finding it hard to fight it off. This is often the cause of the fatigue. You can look to an immune-boosting diet or supplements such as grape seed extract to remove the virus.
- Triggers – it is important to find out what your stress triggers are and avoid them as much as possible. It may be loud noise, light, travel, conflict, gluten etc. Take good care of yourself and create a peaceful environment in which to heal yourself.
- ME/CFS is curable! – don’t believe any person or website who tells you otherwise. I have recovered and I know many other people who have and are living normal lives. Your life will be completely different to the life you had before you got ill. Health will be your number 1 priority, you will stick to boundaries, respect yourself, speak up for yourself and live a life following your passions.
- Take control of your health – spend time reading about healing methods that you are drawn to and try them out. You have the power to heal yourself.
- Reconnect with nature – when I was first ill I used to sit in the conservatory and watch the birds in the garden. It was so relaxing and helped me to connect to the present moment. If you can get outside in the garden and enjoy the beauty of nature. It has many health benefits such as reducing stress and will uplift your mood. Bare foot grounding is amazing for healing the body.
- Be kind to yourself – healing take time so don’t beat yourself up for being ill. Thank yourself for the gradual progress you are making. Take good care of yourself and get lots of rest.
I hope these tips have helped you as you begin your journey back to health! Best wishes for your recovery!
There are many benefits to meditating daily including quieting the mind, feeling more calm and reducing stress. Meditating slows down your breathing rate, which calms the adrenals and oxygenates your body. It is especially important for people with ME/CFS who may be stressed at being ill and whose adrenal glands are often in overdrive.
It can seems difficult to find time to meditate when you are busy, but I find that setting aside 15 minutes every morning is manageable and helps me to wake up in a gentle way. It may take time to get into the habit of meditating everyday but after you have done it sevens days in a row it becomes a habit that you do without thinking about just like brushing your teeth.
15 Minute Light Meditation
This is the meditation I do first thing every morning
- Stand on your bedroom floor with your feet hips width apart.
- Now imagine roots reaching down from the soles of your feet all the way into the core of mother earth. This will ground you.
- Next draw up white light from the earth and visualise it filling up every area of your body and cleansing and dissolving any black energies sitting in your body.
- You can repeat this exercise with any colour of light such as light pink light for unconditional love, purple light for protection from negative energies or sky blue light to cleanse your throat chakra for clear communication.
- Next open up your crown chakra and draw down white light from the universe. Imagine it moving down into your body filling up your head, arms, hands, torso, legs and feet.
- Again you can repeat this practice with any colour of light.
- Now imagine white light from above cleansing your aura and any negative entities moving out of your aura space. Purple light is very effective for repelling these negative energies.
- Ask Archangel Michael to cut your cords. You can see these black cords coming out of your body, usually in your back, and attaching you to other people who may be draining your energy. I ask the angels to pull out the remaining ends of the cords and visualise them surrounded in bright white light until they dissolve.
- Now push out a sphere of white light from your being to patch up any holes in your aura.
- Finally draw up your roots from the earth and close your crown chakra.
- Thank mother earth, the universe and the angels for the healing light meditation.
I always feel a lot better after doing this cleansing meditation. I feel centred and peaceful and it sets me up for a great day! I hope you find a way to fit meditation into your daily routine and start reaping the health benefits!
Happy birthday Cooking to Heal ME! It’s a year today since I created my blog one sunny morning. I’m so grateful for all the joy my blog has brought me! It’s been a pleasure to connect with so many inspiring and creative bloggers and I’m grateful for this supportive community.
My blog has allowed me to express myself, be creative and share my knowledge of health with others. I’m so happy that my blog has been read by people suffering with ME/CFS and I genuinely hope that the ideas I have shared on my blog have helped them to improve their health!
I want to say thank you to everyone who has viewed my blog and supported me along the way.
I will continue to post vegan, gluten-free recipes and anything I am inspired to write about my experiences of recovering from CFS.
There are many triggers to CFS, not just one cause. Recently I have been studying disease triggers on my nutrition course and thought back to when I first got ill in 2008 as to what triggered my CFS. Below is the list of my triggers as well as the factors that were driving my symptoms.
My Triggers to CFS
High sugar diet
High wheat diet
Low immune system
Working with chemicals
High tuna diet
Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR)
Moving home/New job/Working full time and studying/Stress
Lack of emotional support/
Poor diet/Poor sleep
I would love to hear what were the triggers to your CFS. It is something that is worth thinking about so that you can avoid the triggers and symptoms in future and live a more peaceful, happy and healthy life.
ME/CFS (Myalgia Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) is a chronic debilitating illness characterised by fatigue that does not go away with rest. The newest name for the illness is SEID (Systemic Exertion Intolerance Disease).
There are many symptoms including:
- Fatigue not eased on resting
- Flu-like symptoms
- Brain fog
- Poor concentration
- Low blood pressure
- Sensitivity to light and sound
- Fatigue on exertion
- Muscle weakness
- Muscle spasms and twitches
- Abdominal pain
- Food intolerances
- Adrenal fatigue
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
With Fibromyalgia there are additional symptoms of:
CFS is diagnosed by elimination after various NHS tests such as blood tests, endoscopy, ECG, postural tests, MRI scan etc. If all their test results come back negative then they may diagnose you with CFS.
Often people with ME/CFS are housebound or even bedbound. The illness can last for a few months to several years. I had CFS for 3 years and after making diet and lifestyle changes was able to function in society again.
I hope this information has helped you to better understand ME/CFS/SEID.
Happy Valentine’s Day! <3 <3
This is a special day to spend with your loved one appreciating what you have together. Or if you are single you can treat yourself to show yourself how much you love and appreciate yourself!
Why not indulge in my delicious Chocolate Snowballs this Valentine’s Day! Or share a bowl of my dreamy Cashew & Banana Ice Cream!
Your chakras are seven energy centres which govern certain areas of your body. When they are open and spinning at at the right speed, we have vibrant health and all areas of our life work well. When they are closed or underactive, we get illnesses and problems in areas of our life such as finances, relationships, self-esteem etc.
The throat chakra governs communication and is about speaking your truth and expressing yourself.
People who are quiet with low self-esteem who do not speak up for themselves often have a closed throat chakra. This can stem from being told off for expressing their true self as a child and being taught to conform and behave in a certain way. It is important to open the throat chakra and find your voice in order to communicate our thoughts and feelings and have healthy relationships.
To open it, practice speaking up for yourself to the right person at the right moment. Activities such as singing are helpful to open your throat chakra. Foods to stimulate the throat chakra include drinks especially water, juices, smoothies, fruits, soups, sauces and sea vegetables.
Recipes for the throat chakra include:
Smoothies & Drinks
Lemon Juice in Water
Tropical Pineapple & Mango Smoothie
Vegan Mango Lassi
Summer Fruit Salad
Carrot & Coriander Soup
Green Pea & Mung Bean Soup
Minich, D. (2009). Chakra Foods for Optimum Health. United States of America: Conari Press
People who are ill with ME/CFS tend to be workaholics and overachievers. They think their self-worth is determined by how much they do and what they achieve. That mentality means you neglect your needs such as food, water, sleep and time to relax and leads to burn out and chronic fatigue. This is what happened with me.
ME/CFS sufferers are often keen to get back to work as soon as possible and are not keen to take the time needed to rest and heal. All their lives they have worked hard to prove to themselves that they are good enough. They were brainwashed at school that they are only as good as their grades. They often had workaholic parent or parents who criticised them a lot so they worked hard to get their approval by being overachievers. This behaviour continued into adulthood. They are perfectionists who never feel good enough, despite achieving more that most people.
I know that I am a workaholic who finds it hard to relax. I have to make time in my busy schedule for relaxation including meditation, yoga and walking in nature on a daily basis in order to stay healthy.
Ways to relax include:
- Taking a nap
- Reading a book
- Walking outside in nature
- Sitting and watching the sky
- Epsom salt bath
- Listening to relaxation music
- Patting a pet
- Sitting in the sunshine
- Focusing on the breath
I only started to heal when I accepted I could no longer work and do as much as I used to do. When I let go of validating myself by societies high standards and just be myself. It is enough to just be.
The information in this post is my opinion and stems from my experiences with ME/CFS. I know many other people with ME/CFS who also had this tendency to push themselves too hard before they got ill.