When my stomach had bloated to the size of a beach ball, and I was suffering in so much agony, that just trying to move made tears well up I my eyes, I decided I was willing to try anything to get some relief.

I was taking laxatives like candy, drinking prune juice by the gallons, cramming fiber in every way I could, but there was no relief. I came across an article about how chiropractic care could alleviate the pain and bloating from constipation. I didn’t hold out much hope. I had seen a chiropractor many times,just not for this particular ailment… What the hell, I could either give the chiropractor a chance or continue to beg my family to jump up and down on my belly to pop it like a balloon.

My first visit was very different from what I was used to. The nurse performed a battery of tests with different devices I had never seen. The doctors checked my balance, my blood oxygenation, my eye movements…I was slightly overwhelmed. They even did a couple of allergy tests. In the end, they offered some advice: Cut out processed wheat gluten, dairy and limit my corn consumption. I was horrified. Are you fucking crazy? What was I going to eat? Without a diet of bread. Pasta, oatmeal, cheese and ice cream, I would surely starve to death.

With great protest, I agreed to start slow with eliminating gluten. After one day, I could feel my stomach starting to gurgle back to life. Hmmm, I might as well eliminate dairy too. Within a week, I was going number two on command. My stomach was no longer swollen. I could bend, reach and lean comfortably without feeling like a boulder was strapped to my abdomen. Even my workouts improved. I had more agility, stamina and flexibility.

If this is how good I can feel by eliminating wheat and dairy, what else could my diet do for me?
As if by magic, I found a facebook event for a presentation on plant based dieting, scheduled for the following week. I attended the presentation and it was like that moment in the movies where the light bulb goes on in my head and the background music plays Hallelujah. Food wasn’t about stuffing yourself with sugary, greasy blobs of temporary happiness. Food is medicine. Food is fuel. It makes perfect sense. The better quality of fuel you give your machine, the better performance you will get. If you cram a bunch of synthetic crap in your machine, it will slowly break down. Almost every ailment, condition or symptom I struggled with could be helped, even cured by starting a whole foods, plant-based lifestyle. I was terrified to say the least, but if I could feel better and even cure my Lupus, why not give it a shot? I have been plant based for roughly three months, and I have lost 10 more pounds and I have not felt this good in years. I wake up every day with the goal to fuel my body to get its best performance and I know I am kicking Lupus’ ass in the meantime.

Chronic disease, heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, acne, eczema… Almost any chronic condition is preventable or reversible with whole food, plant based eating. It is a huge lifestyle change, but it is all worth it to get my life back.

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