Don’t quit those vitamins too quickly!

Over the years I have tried many many vitamins, minerals and herbs (don’t ask). Some of them I still use. Some are long gone. Some, like vitamin C and CoQ10, gave me miraculous results over night. Some, like alfalfa and turmeric took longer to show results. If I stopped them after a month – no results.

I really really like instant gratification. In fact, I prefer to my gratification to come before I even want it. I got that in spades with vitamin C and CoQ10. The day after I took my first big dose (1000mg) of vitamin C my gums stopped bleeding. Seemed like a miracle to me.

Now I know I just need a lot of vitamin C. Someone else could take 1000mg of vitamin C and have horrible stomach upset. We are all so different.

My gums weren’t bleeding any more, but they still weren’t “happy”. I wanted happy gums. Like I would want sad ones?  But I digress

I did a bit of research and found that CoQ10 was good for your gums. I got the CoQ10 and took it that very day. If memory serves, it was 100mg. At that time 100mg of CoQ10 was a lot of CoQ10 as it hadn’t been on the mass market that long.

The next day my gums were happier – more pink – less red. In a week my gums were “in the pink”. That phrase has new meaning for me now.

So, dear reader. Plan to take a new vitamin, mineral or herb in the new year? Give it a chance to work. If you have a medical condition like diabetes or high blood pressure, speak with your doctor before taking something new. Guarana may sound great for weight loss, but it can easily bump up your already high blood pressure.

Be well out there in 2015 !

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It’s always time for Vitamin C

vita-cThis post was prompted by and is excerpted from “The Buzz” in the December, 2014 issue of “Vegetarian Times”.

“The Buzz” in December was all about Vitamin C. The Buzz reminded me that Vitamin C is definitely called for to deal with the additional stresses of Winter: the cold, colds, the dry-er air, snow, ice, … I’m getting cold writing this. But, I digresss.

In the article, Robert A Schulman, MD recommends 200 to 500 mg of Vitamin C a day. I personally take 1000 mg of Vitamin C a day; that’s just me. If I take much less than that, after a while, my gums start to bleed – not pretty.

What that tells me is that everyone is different. In my “mega-vitamin days” I took as many as 3 grams of Vitamin C daily and it didn’t bother me – no loose stools, no stomach upset, nothing. You, on the other hand, may take 500 mg of Vitamin C daily and be beset with digestive problems. Because of that …

Take it slow. You can always add more. And try the time-release version. It hangs around longer. Speaking of hanging around longer; you may already be getting all the Vitamin C you need from the food you are eating. Check it out.

In the article, it was said that Vitamin C interacts with aluminum-based antacids, estrogen therapy and non-steroidal drugs (NSAID’s). And also that if you have an iron buildup, kidney stones or are being treated for cancer, you should consult your doctor before taking additional Vitamin C. That is all way above my pay grade. Definitely check it out with your doc if you are having those sorts of problems and want to take additional Vitamin C.

Vitamin C comes in two forms: synthetic and food-based. The synthetic version (ascorbic acid) is more acidic than the food-based one. So, try the food-based version if you have a “delicate” stomach.

With food-based Vitamin C you get more than just ascorbic acid. You get the extra stuff from the foods used to create the Vitamin C. Stuff that just doesn’t come in the synthetic version. For instance, Shaklee (shameless plug) Vitamin C smells like grapefruit – from which it is mostly derived.

So, a little reminder about Vitamin C. Are you, dear reader, getting enough in your diet? If not, maybe supplementation is in order.

You can find the complete article in the December, 2014 issue of Vegetarian Times.

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Better health for pennies a day – really!

I was just going thru bookmarks in Firefox and came across one I saved about three years ago. It is a link to a Huffington Post post by Mark Hyman, MD entitled: How Dietary Supplements Reduce Health Care Costs.

So, the things I’ve been ranting about for decades really aren’t BS. Good to know.

Here is the link to the Huffington Post post.

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Magnesium for bunions

VitalMagIn a 2011 post, dear reader, we briefly discussed time-release magnesium for achy feet, high blood pressure and asthma. I wanted to go into more detail on why magnesium for achy feet.

To your left is a photo of the magnesium we use. For more info on it, just give the image a click. Yes, I am a Shaklee Distributor. Duh. I want the best stuff for us and for you (but I digress).

Bunions. That’s what got me on the trail of magnesium. Just do a search on “magnesium for bunions”. You will get thousands of hits. Check it out. Please. Don’t take my word for it. I am just this guy with bunions that does a lot of research on the net (I digress – again).

Anyway, in my bunion  research I found that magnesium works to reduce the size and thus the pain of bunions because magnesium reduces inflammation and bunions are all about inflammation.

It’s really funny (now). I found out about the bunions because of my old boots. My right foot hurt when I wore the boots. This went on for about three months. I put the boots on. In thirty minutes my right foot hurt. Felt like something in the boot was poking my foot. I looked all over the inside of the boot. Even thought about having it stretched. Took me a while to realise it was my foot poking the boot!

Why the boots? The boots don’t give. My tennies do. The bunions had room-to-roam in my tennies. Not in the boots. Finally, I got a clue because my foot started hurting all the time – not just in the boots. Then I saw them – the evil bunions.

I did what any reasonable person would do. I freaked. OMG! Bunions! Why? Where did these achy bumps come from? Well, they came from Grandma Bailey. Thanks for sharing Grandma.  No, they don’t come from tight shoes (urban legend). They are hereditary. They come from mom or dad, but so does life. So, it’s a bit of a trade-off.

With the help of the time-release magnesium I can deal with the bunions because with it the bunions shrank (a lot) and stopped hurting. Ah. Relief.

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Getting your shit together when depressed

I haven’t written in a while because, well, I was too depressed to do so. Better now that Christmas is behind us. On a scale of 1 – 10, I would rate the depressive episode an eight. It really sucked. Stayed in sweats, no interest in bathing, horizontal a lot. Yeah, bad, bad episode.

I am just very grateful the episode is over. The depression began to lift on December 26th. Pretty much gone now. What did I learn from this episode? I learned that if I just held on it would end. That is the wonderful thing about getting older. From years of experience I know that (my) severe depressive episodes are just that – episodes. And they will pass – which it did.

All these happy people during Christmas. What’s up with that? They didn’t understand why I wasn’t happy, happy, happy. That (of course) caused me to feel even worse. Very irritating.

Two days ago I ran across a woman who felt just like I did, depressed with annoying happy people urging her to “Cheer up”. They just don’t get it. Below is the link to her blog post “21 Tips to Keep Your Shit Together When You’re Depressed”. Isn’t that great?

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A Killer In Your Fridge ~ Sweet Poison…A MUST READ

If you have any sort of debilitating chronic condition, this blog post is (as she says) a must read. Luckily I have a strong reaction to aspartame – headaches and stomach cramps. So, I don’t drink or eat anything with aspartame in it. So does my sister. Must be a genetic thing. After reading her post, I am just grateful I can’t use the stuff.


rhondagessnerIn October of 2001, my sister started getting very sick She had stomach spasms and she was having a hard time getting around. Walking was a major chore. It took everything she had just to get out of bed; she was in so much pain.

By March 2002, she had undergone several tissue and muscle biopsies and was on 24 various prescription medications. The doctors could not determine what was wrong with her. She was in so much pain, and so sick she just knew she was dying.

She put her house, bank accounts, life insurance, etc., in her oldest daughter’s name, and made sure that her younger children were to be taken care of……

The full post is at:

Yes, there are ads in her post.

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The “Spoon” Theory

How many spoons do you have today?

And what is the Spoon thing anyway?

Last week a friend (who also lives with depression) clued me into the “Spoon Theory”. It is an idea from the creative mind of Christine Miserandino. Her web site is She named it that because doctors kept telling her “But you don’t look sick.”

“I explained that the difference in being sick and being healthy is having to make choices or to consciously think about things when the rest of the world doesn’t have to. The healthy have the luxury of a life without choices, a gift most people take for granted.”
~Christine Miserandino

The “Spoons” came to her during dinner with a friend when she was trying to explain how it felt to live with lupus. She gathered all the spoons she could lay her hands on and put them in front of her friend. She then said a healthy person wakes up with an unlimited amount of spoons (energy) and that a person living with a chronic condition wakes up with just so many spoons. And that for the person with the chronic condition everything costs a spoon.

“Everything” being:

waking up,
taking a shower,
walking into work from the parking lot,
attending a meeting at work,
going to lunch ….

These are daily routines a healthy person doesn’t have to think about. Living with depression, I have to think about them or I “run out of spoons” before the day is even half over. She also said there are ways to get more spoons.

I started to think about getting more spoons and in the last two weeks I found I could get another spoon taking Frankie (our dog) for a walk in the woods or driving the car or laying down for 30 minutes – to name three. What could you do to get more spoons?

Because of using the Spoon Theory I feel a lot less shame at not being able to do what healthy people can do. It also gave me a way to better tell what I CAN do. And, it’s fun and I feel more relaxed and less anxious.

In the morning I ask my self “How many spoons do I have?”. The range, for me (so far), is from 12 to 6. On a “12” day I can do a lot. On a “6” day – not so much. Right now how many spoons do you have, dear reader?

During the day I ask “How many spoons do I have?”. When the number gets to two I am done for the day unless I walk Frankie or drive or do some other “spoon adding activity”.

It’s 10:13pm and I still have 3 spoons. Not bad for the end of the day. Enough spoons to finish this and send it out into the world so someone living with a chronic condition can better tell what she CAN do.

That is so cool.

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