Saturday, April 3, 2010

Aminos: Going for the Gold


Going for the gold?  As if I'll ever do anything competitive again, especially anything physical!  But the amino acid product I started today is touted to help athletes build lean muscle mass more than any other protein or amino acid supplement on the market.

The product is called MAP, or SON Formula (two labels, same product.)  You can read about it here:  http://www.sonformula.com/  Extensive research and testing shows that this combination of amino acids goes into rebuilding the body 99%, with only 1% wasted, compared to dietary proteins and other amino acid combinations which range from 20-60% utilization and lots of wasting.

I've had a history of testing low on urinary amino acids but normal on plasma amino acids.  Rich Van Konynenberg and my doctor think that PWC's like me burn up the amino acids for fuel instead of recycling them for rebuilding and detox.  If this product works the way it is supposed to work, I expect to feel some difference.

I'm looking at the two rolls of belly fat I put on with this last relapse, the first 9 months staying with my Mom and eating her delicious cooking without having to tire myself out.  Being a purebred, certified, Jewish mother, she always encouraged me to finish everything on my plate, sometimes imploring "Jansi, can't you eat this one last bite?"  How could I disappoint her when I knew that throwing out even a tiny morsel of food is tantamount to committing a misdemeanor, punishable by facial expressions ranging from disappointment to annoyance?

Now, 2 1/2 years later, I am starting again to do a little bit of exercise on the treadmill, elliptical trainer, stairmaster, and rower -- hoping this tiny amount of exercise combined with the aminos will begin to turn fat into muscle.  The Human Growth Hormone I started four days ago should also help me meet this goal.  I watch the timer carefully and keep my pulse at about 100 bpm.  I started  about 2 months ago with two minutes and beautiful visions of how I would increase 15 seconds a day and work up to 20 minutes by the time the weather got warm.

Well it has been 70 degrees around here this week; the yard is full of yellow daffodils and pink magnolia blossoms; but I'm not even close to 20 minutes yet!

The Longest Cold Ever came on January 28 and thwarted my plans.  It hung around, went away for awhile, came back, went away, then stayed and stayed and stayed.  Mom and I cancelled our vacation in Cancun.  I got lots of neural therapy treatments, acupuncture, and i.v.s with Vitamin C and hydrochloric acid (which supposedly knocks out colds).  I took supplements to my doctor whose muscle testing 'showed' they weakened me, so I put them back on the shelf.  

One morning in late March (end of week 7), I got disgusted and decided to take everything I had in the house -- antibacterial, antifungal, immune support.  I made a disgusting tea with echinacea, horseradish, myrrh, cayenne, and garlic (all in tinctures), and when it cooled a bit, I swallowed capsules, including those for which I muscle tested negative.  A week later, all my symptoms disappeared.  Time to go back to my exercise.  (BTW, I used up the tinctures but am still taking the 3 pills.)
   
In the past 2 weeks, I worked up from 4 minutes of gentle aerobic exercise to 7 and 1/2 minutes.  I feel energized right afterwards, although I often feel cold and tired later in the day -- a sign my energy production is still shutting down in response to the exercise challenge.  I cut down to alternate day and kept lying down for naps even when I wasn't tired.  One day I found myself feeling so great that I ran all 25 feet to the mailbox and danced around the kitchen while putting away dishes.  Then I had a huge setback.

I got caught in a freak snowstorm last week, with a burned out headlight.  I got a flat tire, and as I pulled over to the side of the highway realizing I would be waiting a long time for AAA road assistance, I felt an adrenaline rush.  Deep breathing and closing my eyes didn't do anything to reduce it.  Four hours later at 1 a.m., I returned home locked into the adrenalated state.  I could barely lie still in bed, and nothing in my bag of tricks or medicines had a calming effect on my system.  The next 3 days I was extremely fatigued.  I logged in 10-12 hours of sleep two nights in a row, but my nervous system still felt unbalanced, wired and tired.

At my next NT session, the doctor (who hadn't seen me for 2 weeks), was pleased.  "You've held steady," he said, referring to an earlier conversation about how he determines when a patient is ready to cut back from 2 treatments a week to 1 treatment a week.

I lamented about my increased fatigue and how frustrating it had been to find myself locked in the 'on' position for so long.  He explained that this is typical of a neuro-endocrine disease. I left feeling comforted by his words and energized from the NT injections.

The next day I had another setback.  After a lovely nap outside in the sun, exposing buns and belly to that Vitamin D producing elixir, I stumbled into the bathroom to dress and popped a contact lens with cleaning solution into my eye.  Ouch!  I got a chemical burn and another adrenaline rush.


This double onslaught -- two adrenaline rushes 5 days apart --  was too much for my fragile neuro-endocrine system.  Orthostatic intolerance returned.

How often do we fail to appreciate things until we lose them?  I know I don't spend enough time practicing gratitude for all the good things I have in life.  I spend too much psychic energy dwelling on what I want and on what I've lost.  But now that I can't stand long enough to make meals for myself -- after 6 months of treatment and enough $$ to buy a luxury automobile -- I appreciate the freedom I had when I could walk around the house, put things away, wash the dishes, shop, prepare food, and still have enough 'standing power' to brush my teeth at night.

People try to encourage me with "Don't worry, it's just a temporary setback."  How I'd like to believe them! But everyone with ME-CFS knows this:  you can never tell if a setback is going to be short term or long term until you have moved beyond it.

I have been grieving for two days since my second NT appointment failed to reverse the returning symptoms orthostatic intolerance.  My only consolation is that it is not that bad yet.  I do not have palpitations and dry mouth.  I just have the sore feet, tired legs, and no desire to stand.

Meanwhile, I seem to be capable to continuing with exercise but I am not sure it is a good idea.  I did 7 minutes yesterday morning, plus weights, and felt terrific for a few hours afterwards.  But in the evening I was way too tired, with worse orthostatic than the previous day, and poor sleep.  Today I just did yoga, and I think I'm going to stick with that gentle balancing practice until Doc's magical NT treatments whisk away the O.I.

My first day on MAP/Son Formula:  1 pill before lunch.  1 pill 2 hours before dinner.
Results:
A.   a headache that feels like a detox headache even before taking the second pill.
B.   feeling stronger in my yoga practice; enjoying the feeling of my muscles working as I hold poses a little longer than I usually do.

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Please add your comments here. If you have a question specific to your own condition, please e-mail me directly at drjanisbell@gmail.com I cannot give medical advice. If you want to suggest a product or therapy you think I should try, please let me know if you have used it, what you used it for, and how it helped you.