Bloody Lymey

A Blog About Living with Lyme Disease

Oil Pulling & Cold Sores ……..

I had started oil pulling again and felt that “tingling sensation” and saw the bubbling near my lip.  A cold sore was brewing.  I can say that oil pulling expedited the cycle.  It went from minute blisters to a healing scab in three days.

Typically I use Abreva and opted to not use it this time to see what oil pulling would do on its own.  It did what Abreva typically does, only faster.  My son, unfortunately, has been sick.  He’s very talkative and it’s hard to swish for twenty minutes straight without his needing something or having a question, so the success has been stunted.  I imagine, however, that oil pulling AND Abreva would be a powerhouse for cold sores.

I don’t heal very well as a general rule.  Usually bruises stubbornly adhere to my skin long after the bruises of my healthier counterparts.  Cuts and sores take longer to diminish.  Since having Lyme Disease, it’s even worse.    Cold sores – and their scabby aftermath – typically haunt me for a couple of weeks or so.  Three days is VERY fast for me.

The elimination of a stubborn and colossal wart after embarking on oil pulling is another miracle – I had done nearly everything under the sun to get rid of it up until then.    It has not returned.

I have switched from coconut oil (which got rid of the wart) to sunflower oil.  I’m more tolerant of the taste and texture.  It seems to get equal results but for some reason the coconut oil seemed to do more for my complexion.

That’s my 50-cents for the day. Just one more good reason to try oil pulling if you haven’t yet.  🙂


17 Day Diet Take Two / One Month Later

I have lost 18 lbs.   The first 12 were QUICK, but now it’s slowed down considerably.  And that’s okay.

I actually urinate regularly.  No more camel-hump/potbelly growing and distending throughout the day as I consume liquids.  My bowels are ……. normal!  I have had a couple of IBS incidents in the past month, but I mean that:  just a couple.   Both leaned toward diarrhea.  There’s been zero constipation.

My body retaliated with an acne breakout (but contrasted with Lyme Disease symptoms, that is NOT a big deal), so I started oil pulling again.  My skin cleared up rapidly.  Rapidly.  I’m suspecting there may have been internal candida, too – something I have thought myself to struggle with since all of the antibiotics.  While I did not “herx” with a candida die-off (aside from, perhaps, the acne and initial headaches), my tongue is now a healthy pink color.  Before it had some whitish thing going on …… a telltale sign.

While I have not followed the diet to a T — I had corn on the cob during the first 17 days. I have had pizza (from a place that makes sourdough crust sans yeast).  I have had pasta.  All in moderation.    I had a tiny slice of cake last night, one of exactly two servings of sugar in the past month.  That tiny slice of cake was bliss, but I almost couldn’t finish it.   I could feel my body chemically reacting to it ……. and I can’t articulate that much better.   I have been drinking diet soda, though more moderately.

What I have stuck to:  

1. Two servings of fruit a day

2.  8 Glasses of water

3.  Two servings of probiotics (Greek yogurt [higher in protein] with some polaner all-fruit – no sugar added/sweetened with fruit juice and a hint of lemon extract to make that Greek yogurt sour taste more palatable)

4.  Protein daily — perhaps not as much as I should

5.  Lots of “cleansing veggies.”

6.  BLACK coffee with some ice coffee exceptions that included cream but no sweetener — I can count those exceptions on one hand.

So this is, as they say in A.A., “Progress not perfection.”

My joints have been faintly creaky on occasion, but for the most part ….. nil.

NO nerve pain except that jab in the groin a few weeks back and a couple of pings in my ears.   Had the jab in the crotch not been so epic on the pain scale, I might have forgotten that isolated incident and the ears.

Headaches are gone.

Brain fog?  Gone.

Lyme Disease?: 

My doctor, before referring me to the Rheumatologist, said very clearly “I do not think you have an active infection [Lyme Disease].”  In the ER, when I was brought in with heart attack symptoms last week, the doctor asked about my medical history.  He was surprised that after I was “cleared” of Lyme, no one did another test to prove it.  However?  My first two tests were negative, so I don’t know if I could be convinced.  I would like to just believe my labs and put it to rest, but I don’t know if I could.  How many tests could convince me?  Ten?  I don’t know.

The Rheumatologist did NOT like my Lyme treatment.  My specialist was rather a one hit wonder:  Ceftin.  She tinkered with the dosage and tinkered with the duration of treatment ….. but overall, once I finished my first course which was Doxycycline, it was just Ceftin, Ceftin, Ceftin.  I lost count after 18 months (3 months here, 6 months there ……).   He asked me if I was treated with other medications and listed some, including one I can’t recall that contains Quinine.

So it sounds like some people in the medical community have quietly alleged that I might still be infected — whether through maltreatment or through not being properly ruled out again.  But this is what I despise.  There is NO protocol at a higher level for doctors to follow.   Hence?   No one is on the same page.  It also seems like one line of treatment might be effective for one person but not for another.  I think this should be studied, too, so that there can be a Plan A, Plan B and so forth.

I googled “Lyme Research Grants” and came up with multitudes of monies offered to people who have a good game plan and proper qualifications.  While I think we’ve come a way since my diagnosis in terms of education, I think there’s a lonnnnnnnnnng way to go.    And with all these research grants out there, why are we still ‘here?’

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Oil Pulling/Oil Consumption Update – Switching to Sunflower Oil for Pulling

As I write this, I am swishing with SUNFLOWER oil. I have finished the jar of coconut oil and bought a new one for consumption because I have heard of many benefits.

My research states that Sunflower oil is the oil of choice for oil pulling (either that or NOT TOASTED sesame – and I have been unable to find that). Now I have found I can’t just run into my normal grocery store chain and scoop up a bottle of sunflower oil. Locally we have a market called Guido’s where they have gourmet things as well as organics and hard-to-find supplements. I found it there. I could find coconut oil in any supermarket – usually in a peculiar place away from the other oils. But never sunflower. I still have not found a sesame oil that was not toasted. It must exist somewhere if it’s recommended.

So far my praises for the sunflower oil:

1. Taste : it’s more neutral. Coconut oil isn’t terribly flavorful anyway, but sunflower oil is less flavorful than THAT. I thought it might taste something like the seeds. Nope. Pretty neutral. Not one bit nutty/seedy.
2. TEXTURE. Coconut “oil” is almost a misnomer. It looks something like shortening and has a firmer texture (during our heatwave, we reached its melting point which is 90-something degrees, and it puddled in the jar. It has since firmed back up). I had to practically “chew” it to melt it down and commence pulling.
3. Price. I obtained 32 oz of sunflower oil for $14.99 (the place I purchased it IS pricey – may be cheaper elsewhere if you can find it), whereas the coconut oil in the ordinary grocery store was $10.49 but I only got 14 oz. If I bought two of these containers, receiving 4 oz less than the sunflower oil, then it would cost about $21.00.
4. Recommended: the internet sources/experts suggest it the most for oil pulling.

I cannot praise it much more than that at this point because this is my first ‘pull, using it. Too soon to reap any other benefits.

I will still consume coconut oil and I’m sneaking it into my son’s diet via grilled cheese, etc. He has not noticed. I’m not sure how many tablespoons this will amount to. He has tons of warts on his fingers and since it cleared up mine (it is now down to a tiny red speck surrounded by a flat circle), I thought the oil might be dandy for him! There are instructions to use the oil topically with sea salt, too, by the way.

As for swishing? I’ll opt for sunflower oil for now. I’ll keep you advised of any changes.

PS – Perhaps I was too premature in posting this before spitting it out. I didn’t anticipate having anything more to say so soon.

More benefits:

1. I have been keeping CLOSE track of my gums to see if there are any differences. After this ONE O.P. with sunflower I cannot believe how pink and healthy and evenly colored my gums are.
2. Rinsing – it seems to less stubbornly adhere to my mouth. The coconut oil seemed to coat my tongue, teeth and insides of my cheeks SO stubbornly. Sunflower seemed far easier to rinse (it still takes a few rinses and a brushing of the teeth, but nothing like the coconut oil). There! So far, so good!


Coconut Oil – More Benefits

I have been writing about my experiences with oil pulling and to sum:

1. My teeth are whiter
2. My gums look healthier
3. A stubborn wart is unexpectedly disappearing (after 10 days it is flat, skin-toned, barely noticeable)
4. Digestion has improved
5. Liver detox as evidenced by increased bile production
6. Some weight loss (Since my stomach bug – a contributor to the weight loss – I have lost 7 pounds in 2 weeks …… probably all of it water)
7. Hair and skin healthier – hair lustrous and smooth, skin cleared and evenly toned – acne subsided)
8. MUCH higher energy
9. A foot that has been stubbornly “athletic” (Like in the athlete’s foot kind of way) since I was diagnosed with Lyme 4 years ago is mysteriously clearing up — and I’m not applying coconut oil topically. The foot has hard yellow skin, dry skin …… just hideous. Nothing worked. Now parts of it are smooth. (?)
10. My eyesight has improved (?) — (I have been struggling with on again/off again blurry vision)
11. Appetite seems more regulated (When I’m having flareups I find my stomach stops growling and I don’t realize I’m hungry until my blood sugar dips. I also don’t tend to feel “full” and sometimes eat more than necessary. Besides the stomach sensations, my brain doesn’t seem to have that ignition that turns on the “satiation” mechanism)
12. Joint pain improved
13. Increased phlegm production as if my lungs are getting a cleaning, too
14. Less dryness (I tend to have a dry nose, dry ears, dry eyes, dry mouth ….. they’re talking about Sjogren’s being a potential problem for me) – the dryness being relieved isn’t something that lasts all day. It’s usually clustered around my dose of oil and lasts a few hours)

Now I’ve read more about ingesting it and not just pulling (*Note – don’t do a pull and THEN swallow. Simply take one tablespoon.*)

It is reputed to do a number of things – a NUMBER of things. Once vilified as a saturated, artery-clogging, heart-busting fat (during the ’80’s and early ’90’s “fat free craze”), there seems to be new research on its benefits.

Here’s one article:

Since I’ve started consuming it as well (NOT after I pull — I take a separate tablespoon . I ALWAYS spit the swished stuff), there have been some instant gratifications:
1. Guaranteed BM the morning after
2. My thyroid meds seem to kick in pretty swiftly after drinking some coconut oil
3. Improved mood
4. Increased libido (uhhhh, huh, huh, huh)
5. Bouts of confusion are GONE
6. Concentration is pretty sharp – creativity is back – lots of razor sharp thoughts/better work performance
7. Far less flatulence (I’m not sure I like this ….. farting is fun). 🙂
8. My circulation has improved and I feel less susceptible to the A/C during this heat wave

Here’s a link that explains more about what it does and how much to take (based on body weight) :

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Oil Pull Update #7

I’ve done more than 7 Oil Pulls, but it seems to be getting tedious to write about every time I do it since sometimes there are no changes.  An interesting change — and it might be a coincidence — is I’ve had a hideous wart on my index finger for well over a year and a half.  It’s stubborn.  I’ve filed it, put things on it, tried the duct tape remedy (but I admit all the time how inconsistent I am with keeping up with things like that). Things shrank it, but it stubbornly stayed affixed to me!!! 

Since starting oil pulling, it’s been shrinking.  Today is Day 7 and it’s nearly gone.  This I did not expect.  Maybe it would have gone away this week regardless of what I was doing, but I think it’s peculiar that after all this time and after all this effort it’s diminishing.  It’s now flat and its coloring is the same as the rest of my hand.  

I feel better.  WAY better.  

With the coconut oil, I had been describing it as thick and something akin to the texture of butter.  For some mysterious reason the entire jar has melted.  YES it’s hot and humid here, but it has been all week long.  It’s far easier to contend with and I don’t feel as repulsed as I had.  Ha ha.  The Tablespoon of oil feels like a smaller amount now that the oil is OIL and not some thick butter glob.  

That’s my 2-cents for the day.  I think I’m attached to oil pulling now.  At first I didn’t feel like doing it — but encouragement from some of my readers helped!  Now I feel like something’s missing if I don’t do it.  I must admit I don’t follow it to the T. I don’t do it on a 4-hours’s empty stomach and I don’t abstain from drinking liquids for an hour. But I’m definitely seeing positive changes.  

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Oil Pull #6

I’m still doing the oil pulling. I skipped a night doing it and felt a difference in the morning – a not so positive one.

Smoking is becoming less desirable to me – how crazy. I just feel so clean after I pull and then when I smoke I feel increasingly like I am polluting myself . If you’re a nonsmoker then you might be saying “duhhhhhhh.” But if you’re a smoker …… you know what I mean. 🙂

I am still bounding with energy and my fleeting joint pain seems to be right after I do an O.P. My skin is VERY much clearing up. My bowel movements are more normal than they have been in eons (TMI?) but I can tell there is an increase in bile (evidence of liver detoxing). For years I have fluctuated between constipation and diarrhea. Every day this week I have “gone” in the morning and it seems to be a happy medium. This I did not expect.

No matter how much I read about oil pulling and how it works or why it works, I still can’t wrap my head around how swishing with oil for 20 minutes can have this much of an impact on all of my health.

Food and drinks taste way better and gone is that metallic taste that I have been struggling with.

I have my “Aunt Flo” visiting this month …. and my symptoms seem to be what they were years ago – I mentioned this a couple of blogs ago, but think it’s worth mentioning that it’s continuing.

I have had some mysterious water retention for a few months that makes my abdomen and thighs mushy and dimpled. Now my water retention seems to be the more solid variety that accompanies PMS. My gut feels kind of firm now (not like “bounce a quarter off it/six pack abs” …. just tighter). THIS I’m VERY pleased with. And there’s no more dimples on my belly.

I had a horrible and sudden urge to cough when I was doing O.P. #6 and I was in our basement, which is carpeted. That would have SUCKED spewing oil all over the rug. So it may be something to be mindful of. The urge passed and somehow I had summoned some control to keep it in, doing a couple of gentle throat clearings helped when the worst of it ebbed.

I guess that’s all I have for today. I want to keep on keeping on.

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Oil Pull #5

Some things have changed already and, like I said, my thyroid med changed too. I’ll try to make a distinction between things that could be attributed to the med change and the oil pulling.

1. My legs hurt differently. It’s in a muscular way. It’s from walking WAY more *smile*.
2. My menstrual cycle feels like it did years ago — the sleepiness I get is more like someone sleeping more deeply and having difficulty waking up, I have cramps again, I felt a migraine coming on (I rarely get those since getting Lyme …. hey. Ya win some, you lose some.) — this could be thyroid meds for sure. A lot of this has endocrine written all over it. Although the migraine could be a detox symptom.
3. Greatly reduced appetite — I get full sooner and satiated. I don’t have the urge to eat like I did. Sugar cravings have been reduced — even with full blown PMS!
4. My hair is SMOOTH now. Lustrous, even. Very strange. It was so dry it was nearly water repellent. This may be thyroid med stuff, but coconut oil is also notorious for helping with this.
5. My sandals are suddenly loose and I can see more bones in my feet — maybe I had some subtle edema thing going on? It’s very sudden. Verrrrrry sudden. Like a change overnight.
6. An acne outbreak on my chin is quite suddenly clearing up. It erupted soon after starting this and is now just clearing up. Acne tends to linger on and on with me and zits don’t seem to heal or clear up much.
7. Uhhhhhh………..a bit of acid reflux . It’s worse if I do an O.P. after eating (like they say NOT to, ahem). Did it again with #5 — mostly for an experiment to see if there was a correlation. There appears to be. Maybe it’s just ME and my wiring and maybe it’s not a common side effect.
8. Loose, productive cough. Find myself having the ‘ahems’ a lot. I try to tell people that because it’s pretty frequent. It sucks when you tell your coworker she looks nice today and then suddenly “AHEM.” LOL.
9. Creativity. I don’t know what it is, but my mind seems “quicker” and more imaginative — something like it used to.
10. Lighter mood.

As for how Oil Pull #5 went …….

My mouth felt clean after for the first time. Other times it felt NASTY. Just polluted and oily and toxic. I stopped at 15 minutes. I had been kind of reclining and swallowed one minuscule iota of some oil and just had to STOP. But it’s okay. No need to be a perfectionist here.


Oil Pull – #4

Prior to #4 there was something to be said for my “number 2.” It was rather green, so obviously there must be something to the “bile production” and “liver cleansing” component to this.

I should probably preface the next thing by saying that I’m a smoker. Since I’ve started this, I feel less and less fond of my dirty habit. It hasn’t removed the urge and it hasn’t lessened the addiction, but now I feel more “polluted” when I do it. Strange. I hadn’t expected that. I had quit for over a year and a half and picked up the habit again — just went through HARD times in 2009 when my brother passed (and the bad feelings would have passed had I waited …. it’s not an excuse. Just trying to explain my vulnerability at that time). Unfortunately, Lyme has given me lower blood pressure and smoking (which elevates BP) made me feel more alive. It made me less constipated. All kinds of alluring byproducts of smoking — and I don’t recommend it to anyone. So that made it easier to slide back into the habit.

So….. Oil Pulling #4:

Even after feeling better about #3 and feeling more accustomed to it, the very notion of putting this coconut oil GLOP in my mouth repulsed me today. Man, I wish I had found all the stuff about sunflower oil and sesame oil! The THINNER and more texture-pleasing & palatable choices……

I definitely have to plan the pulling around something to do while I’m swishing. I try to make it coincide with my shower or folding laundry or some kind of activity – not just watching TV. I’ll get preoccupied with wanting to spit it out or for it to be over (wow, it really is bothering me today, isn’t it?)

I’m pulling right now. I have to remember I’m not churning butter in here. Sometimes I do it with more vigor than is probably necessary. I have to think in terms of a race and how I want to maintain stamina and not sprint. I can get to a finish line quicker, but 20 minutes takes 20 minutes and swishing more violently won’t make it go by faster. It will just tire my cheeks and make me wish it was over with more intensely. I’m trying to focus on the goal: better health. Focusing on “right now” is an undue distraction and will probably discourage me from keeping up with this.

I must be honest, too, about the fact that I did not wait an hour after my morning coffee. There’s just not enough time for me to do this to the letter, I guess. I get my son ready and out first — no way can I pull for 20 minutes with Mr. Chatterbox here. Ha ha.

So this morning while I did the O.P., I showered, dried my hair, dressed, wrote to you fine people and spat. Today I’m not sneezing and there are no pains in my knees. Acne on my chin cleared up somewhat. My oral hygiene just feels stellar for the most part. I mean, my mouth feels CLEAN. Nothing earth-shaking today.

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