After almost a year and a half of struggling with my weight, bouts of depression, anxiety, fibromyalgia and leaky gut ... I can finally say that life is relatively normal ... a.k.a. LESS PAINFUL!

It is a constant struggle to find foods that my body likes, to avoid inflammation and to try to keep the pain at bay. While I feel like I have conquered the demon called inflammation, I have lost the battle with my weight. A bitter pill to swallow I assure you!

Struggling to find the middle path with inflammation

While I would love to shout from the mountain tops that I am all healed, this would not be completely true. What is true, however, is that I am almost 90% better thanks to careful eating and loads of prayer.

I seldom struggle with pain ... unless I eat the wrong foods of course! The fatigue .... well it comes and goes at will! The depression and anxiety, well they seem to take turns, but in general, it is far more under control than before.

What is my secret you may ask? Well, it's threefold so sit tight and let's chat!

Controlling fibro flares

I have done so so so much research in the last year on Fibromyalgia, from the foods to eat, to the supplements to take, to the recommended treatments. Here is truly what has made a huge difference in my life. A personal revelation if you will ...

I apologize if you are vegan or vegetarian but there is no denying the power of bone broth in healing a leaky gut. It is a time-consuming exercise, smelly for some, not to mention how hard it is to find bones these days thanks to banting.

What you need to ask your butcher for are the joint bones, no meat just loads of collageny bits. Then place these in a pot with water and salt (NOTHING ELSE). I find other ingredients tend to make the broth "go rancid" far quicker, especially if you are keeping it in the fridge. Now, you need to boil the bones for 9 hours or more ... on a low and slow heat. You may have to keep topping up the water, but eventually, you will see when the bubbles start gurgling and the liquid gets thicker. Allow this liquid to cool and pour into your portion sized containers to freeze. I did say this is a broth, and that is true for the warm liquid ... but, once it cools, the liquid turns to a collagenous jelly which your body will love.

So fermented foods are the guts best friend, to date I have made my own kimchi using fish sauce and found it to be a great addition to salads. Homemade Kimchi lasts about two weeks in a sealed container and takes less than two days to make in warm weather. I am currently aiming to do a few recipes from my latest cook book acquisition called "Genes To Plate" and I will share the recipes in a post soon.

On my current wish list to enrich my fermented foods is this kit from Faithful To NatureCrafty Cultures' Milk Kefir Grains @R230.00. I  am dying to make my own Kefir.  It can be used for yoghurt, dressings and even ice-cream.

Here is some good advice, take it from me ...

Avoid: sugar, wheat, and dairy where possible. Alternatively, opt for lactose-free milk which is now readily avaible at supermarkets and very affordable.

I found in my desire to ward off pain, germs and a lack of energy I turned to supplements. I was dosing myself to the hilt. I have cut back my supplements, from bucketsful to just these few Vitamin D3, Omega's, Zinc,  a multi Vit and an energy boosting vitamin B complex ... and that is enough.

I have however started to incorporate superfoods into my diet such as Quinoa, Chia, Avocado's as well as oats, nuts, and seeds. My body is loving these new foods, and a red honey latte has once again become my favourite drink ... nothing like it!

Neutral ground

Finding neutral ground and learning to understand my body has been super rewarding. Sadly, my weight fluctuations and struggles are back and it has challenged me in so many ways.

Not only that but with our droughts in Cape Town I am unable to grow my own vegetables and once again I find it so frustrating as I love harvesting my own produce. However, I can happily say that life is far less painful. I am also shocked that I am now craving and lusting after things such as Beetroot and Turmeric lattes ... yes, for reals! Healthy and anti-inflammatory options have become an everyday craving and not some foreign object to view from afar.

Here are the current health foods topping my wishlist:
- Taka Golden Latte
- Taka Golden Cacao
- Superlatte Beetroot Cacao

So before you ask, no this is not a sponsored post but rather a wishlist of mine. It's great to write about things, it's an electronic diary of sorts ... and it puts you into temptation too ... tee hee! Maybe I'll have to spoil myself for my birthday on the 27th of September ... a "to me, from me" :)

So I hope this helped, use it don't use it but for me, I am currently in a good space and that is all I can ask for now.