No More “Guilty” Pleasures, I’ll Take Plain and Simple Regular Pleasure

The other night a friend and I laughed at how I knew all the words to some obscure Air Supply song. I’ll always have a soft spot in my heart for those tunes my younger bro and I sang  in front of the TV while watching “Solid Gold.” Up until 2 days ago, anything 1980’s or chocolate, or crocheted,  or anything resembling a cupcake were all guilty pleasures. Not anymore. The guilt is gone and I’m jammin with my Trader Joe’s gluten-free vegan ginger snaps– that I am eating sans guilt despite the sugar.

A lot of guilt goes into and comes out of changing to the “healthier” side of things, you know what I mean? But, the worst I’ve created for myself comes from what I decide I want to eat. Once  you dive into learning what goes into our food — from the ingredients to the energy, processing, and scams behind who is making money by poisoning us with chemicals, gmos, and godknowswhat, your higher self doesn’t want to go back. Healthy food makes you feel food. It tastes good. And us smart and savvy peeps have found ways to even make it cost less, prevent and heal illness and give us enough energy to stay feeling young for long.

Coming to Chicago to visit family and  make our first Bliss Tour stop has taught me that I’ve had to let go of a little bit of my  “healthy” eating. That is because ultimately, I have to eat. I have these ideas of what I am supposed to eat, what I want, what I need, what I crave and all of that. But, my experiences here have taught me just how hard it can be for the average person to make these healthy choices. Whole Foods Market is more full of processed and sugary foods, than it is of “whole foods.”  The Farmer’s Markets cost 3x as much as the one in Santa Monica, and the discount organic market has older produce that is ready for the trash.  Believe me, you can find good, organic and healthy options here. I know it. I used to live here. But, living in California spoiled with variety, convenience and price. I never had to shop at Whole Foods in California. We bought everything at the farmer’s markets.

I initially felt guilty for making choices to buy fruit and veggies that I knew were sprayed with chemicals. Our family has gotten  sick for the first time in years. We were exposed to mold. And, I originally blamed that on my poor meal planning and poor shopping decisions.

But, I think the guilt hurts more than the pesticides.  It’s proven  that not only are emotions connected to our physical health, but that our heart vibration is the strongest vibration  we emit. If our hearts are heavy with guilt, that has the potential to harm us even more than what we eat. 

Pleasure, on the other hand… pleasure has the power to raise your heart vibration and actually bring physical healing into your body. So, what if I eat my chemical-laden grapes with the utmost gratitude and pleasure? What if I just enjoy them today because they are what I have? What if I give gratitude for the experience that helped me better understand how  most people have to struggle to get healthy food? It’s gotta work.

So, that’s what I am doing now. It’s important to me  to eat the best I can because it does make me feel my best. But, if I live rigid-style how am I going to help anyone? Diets stink.  I’m glad I discovered my guilt because I realized I was living in a diet mentality. When  you are on a diet you have “forbidden’ foods. This is never going to work in reality.

Guilt is one of those complimentary emotions granted to the good-hearted, bleeding hearts. Believe it or not, it’s one of the hardest emotions to get a handle on. It took me forever to realize how selfish it is to be guilty. How that emotion strips us away from ourselves because it often involves pleasing others. The only real remedy for this is joy — doing whatever truly makes the real you happy.

 

The next time you feel a tinge of guilt coming from your mama, your spouse or your inner critic, try smacking that experience in the face with some pure happiness. Stop what you are doing. Stop right in the middle of doing it and focus your attention on the happy part of it.  Be thankful that you have that experience.

It may be natural to feel guilty. But, that doesn’t mean it always has to be so. You can change your story. You can find the Bliss in any moment. I’m erasing guilty feelings all day long with a simple thought, and sometimes a bite of cookie.

Rock on!

 

Gina

Autism Healing Class coming to Asheville, NC July 3 with Emily Shaules

We’re so excited to meet more of you and share everything we know about healing from the toxic overload of autism and embracing the BLISSFUL beings beneath the autism mask. We recovered our child, Dougie through nutrition, energy healing, sensory learning, detoxification, homeschool/unschool and all  natural, non-invasive HOME MADE healing. And, we did it all on the tightest budget imaginable (that is.. no budget at all).

We’ve designed this groundbreaking class to share our views and methods behind the true messages of autism and how we can both accept and honor our children’s differences and help them become their healthiest, truest selves.

We want to put the power to heal yourself and your family back into your hands where it belongs. You can learn about your body, your intuition and your specific nutritional and emotional/energetic needs. And, YOU CAN SAVE YOUR FAMILY!

autism Undone Intro Class

Come discover the root causes and  natural solutions to autism. Find out how nutrition (built specifically for your needs), energy healing, sensory learning and  other natural remedies helped undo our son’s autism and illness. And, how your children can THRIVE.  The Bliss is in the JOURNEY, and life gets sweeter each day.

Coming To Asheville, NC July 3 with Emily Shaules of Raw Breakthrough

Emily, a former attorney, healed herself of Fibromyalgia, Ulcerative Colitis  and many other “incurable” illnesses through nutrition and lifestyle changes.  She coaches people worldwide how

ow to do the same.  Emily lives in Asheville.

7/3/11

10am-6pm

Rose Pilates: 670 Weaverville Hwy., Ste. 2, Asheville NC 28804

$222


Each guest will receive an e-copy of Gina’s new book, “Are You Eating Your Bugs? — Your Probiotic Diet to Bliss” and a complete intro pack that guides you through implementing diet changes and our healing methods in your home. 

PLUS: Special presentation on Detoxification By Emily Shaules of Raw Breakthrough

Healing autism means healing the root causes of all illness on Mama Earth, and we will show you how earth provides us with every natural solution to healing that we need. We will dig deep into energy, intention, food, detoxification, vaccinations and more.

Read Healing Earth’s autism here.

Each class is uniquely tailored to the students in it. So, please come get your questions answered, and learn something new with us!

Get the Goods on:

  • Detoxification
  • Vaccination and natural immunization
  • Immune Building
  • Supplements and Super Foods
  • Body Ecology Diet
  • Raw Foods
  • Beginning Lifestyle change on a budget
  • Tricks for getting picky eaters to try new things
  • Starting slowly and taking baby steps for lasting results
  • Using energy, intuition and intention to guide your way
  • Gut/Brain Connection
  • Candida/Yeast infections
  • Fermented Foods and Probiotics
  • Colon Health
  • Sensory Learning
  • Unschooling

Get your personal questions answered (if we don’t have an answer we will find it).

$222

Prepay through PayPal to secure your seat by June 28, 2011

Guess what? we can raise healthy kids! In fact, we can raise vibrant kids — autism just may prove to be  what we need to become healthier and more radiant than ever!

If you love someone with autism and want to make their lives brighter, you will LOVE this class. See you there!

This class is for adults only (unless nursing).

Contact Gina@BlissedLife.com with questions or comments

Gina

Chicago Fermenting Class: 6/5 Cultured Foods/Intuitive Eating Class

We’re taking our healing machine hearts on the road to talk, teach, learn and share with you. So, let me know if you are interested in having us come to your neck of the woods.

June 5 Cultured Foods Class with Sass

Gut Health Marries Gut Instinct

2 – 5:30 pm

Chicago, North Side private Res. email Gina@Blissedlife.com for details

$44 

I’m bored with the same-old fermenting classes where I shred some cabbage, and show you how to handle the precious probiotic bugs.

This class will teach you everything you need to know about making your  own DELICIOUS fermented foods at home. But, I also have to show you why you’ll love them.

Discover how to use and improve upon your intuition, and create the most satisfying diet for yourself! Join me for an interactive workshop that will totally Bliss your socks off.

You’ll learn how to nourish and listen to your “gut feelings” in order to align with what foods are right for you.

We’ll ferment vegetables, coconut kefir, nuts, seeds, butter and even CHOCOLATE!  Plus get the heaping scoop of fermenteds that will make animal products more digestible, and help turn toxic by-products of meat into useful amino acids.

For centuries, people have fermented foods for the sake of preservation. Now, we realize the importance and DELICIOUSNESS of adding them into our daily lives.

Fermented foods are full of healthy bacteria (probiotics) that make your gut happy. And, a happy gut means that you can digest your food better.

Fermented foods were a Major factor in my family’s healing from autism, candida, seizure disorder, fatigue, acne and more. I can’t wait to share them with you.

The Intuitive Side:

  • Intuition Building exercises
  • Gut Health and Gut Instincts
  • Getting Grounded
  • Asking and Receiving Intuitive Answers
  • Using Your Dreams to Guide You
  • Eating Clean (what does that mean for your body?)
  • Food  Energy (yin/yang) and Healing Powers

Everyone leaves with

  • A jar of cultured veggies
  • A recipe book
  • Tons of info on how to easily incorporate fermented foods into your busy life.

Plus enjoy some of my fave fermented food treats

Can’t wait to see you!

The class is $44/person. Prepay through PayPal to secure your seat.

xoxo Gina


photo credit: Maxime Vallette

Our autism Recovery Story

(article first published on rawmom.com July 2008 )

My son will be four in 13 days. And, two years ago, our own friends and family doubted he’d survive his many health challenges with so little scarring. He is Dougie. He is emerging through what the world is calling “autism.” And, he is by far the STRONGEST person I know.
The newborn Dougie was every parent’s dream. After a complicated pregnancy disrupted by a mis-diagnosed miscarriage, placenta previa, early contractions and dilation, candida skin eruptions, and ignorant remarks from a group of non supporters – I was blessed to have a healthy happy baby boy. I stared at him sleeping for the first three hours of his life.

In order to ensure that our boy’s health remained vibrant, his daddy and I employed the city’s most expensive pediatrician. I’m talking about one who charged $700 for a well visit with immunizations (after insurance, of course). Oh, how my heart sank when we couldn’t afford two of the recommended shots according to the recommended schedule!

But, our baby was sleeping through the night in his swing, sleeping through trips to the movies, friends’ parties, and car rides. The kid slept so much, my husband and I brought him on dates. My expensive pediatrician assured me, on one of our midnight-worry-calls, that all of this sleeping was a gift, and that I should revel in it. And, so I did.

And, when my dermatologist told me that the white rashes Dougie was getting were a direct reflection to the hormones in my breast milk — and that my baby was in fact suffering from ACNE, I weaned Dougie from mother’s milk. Colic began with dairy-based formula, but I never made the connection. Our E.P. (expensive pediatrician) assured me that the brand we selected was sooooo close to breast milk, and that I made the right choice. I didn’t want to poison my kid with my ruined milk, so I traded my happy sleeper for a rash-less night crier.
By the time he was ready for food he was in love with spinach, squash and bananas. We chose almond and rice milks over dairy and his tummy issues subsided. But, I regrettably kept him on formula for 14 months, because the E.P. made a case for the “unrivaled” calcium source. He was pooping about seven times a day, but at this point I knew nothing of the problem that symbolized.

I became more confident in my mommy skills as Dougie learned to walk, talk and ask for things he wanted. I knew that I wasn’t eating dairy myself. And I knew he didn’t need it either. We filled him with wholesome home cooked and raw organic foods. We made sure we chose quality food sources of fats, protein, and other essential nutrients. He craved bananas. We made sure that he never got processed foods, candy or typical un-natural kid food. And, yeah we experienced many upturned noses because of this. But the result was that my 2 year old never needed prescription meds.

And despite the life-sucking day jobs, threat of home foreclosure, getting disowned by some family members, and MY chronic ear infections, my husband and I were overjoyed at being parents.

My husband, Doug, brought Dougie to get his next round of shots while I was at work. I had an eerie feeling about it, but just couldn’t determine a good reason not to vaccinate. I just didn’t fully understand what we were doing to Dougie. And, that’s when fever and flu entered our lives.

I put on my Healer Helmet and got him better with magic elixirs of vitamins and herbs. My parents thought I was nuts.

But before I knew it, I was facing my own doctor and my own chest x-rays and blood tests that revealed I needed to rest. I had pneumonia and had apparently held it at bay for months with my natural therapies. My doctor was disgusted at the bottles of oil of oregano, colloidal silver and other goodies I brought to show him I was taking care of myself. I still didn’t fully “GET IT.”

Soon, I was being injected with various antibiotics that made it hard for me to hold my head up. My mom was taking care of Dougie. And, Dougie was in NEED of prescription meds for the first time in his life. Of course, the nurse comforted me with the fact that all kids get sick all the time, and antibiotics were simply a part of life.

I felt as though I failed him by not being there to cook his meals and make his “get better” tea. He was placed on 4 back to back rounds of antibiotics. And from Christmas Eve through mid January, he regressed into a dazed state of consciousness. He lost all of his language and had no emotional response to pain. He cried or screamed almost all the time, and refused to eat anything but pizza.

By January’s end, I picked up my head, opened my laptop, and confirmed to myself and to my best friend that Dougie had autism. At this time, my husband was too sensitive to hear the word because it held so many negative connotations for him. Dougie was so sick and his daddy was so scared. I longed for someone to scream at. Someone to talk to. But, at this point I wasn’t sad or guilty. I was determined to find a cure.
Our financial predicament left us shacking up in my brother-in-law’s basement for a few months. God bless them for not killing me as I embraced the weirdness of self-healing.

Doug and I are not those parents who took our child from doctor to doctor trying to figure out what happened. Not only could we not afford it, but our experience with doctors taught us that they (at least the ones we knew of) would not have an answer. I refused to take the money we could use for getting better and hand it over to a doctor, just to hear “I’m so sorry Mr. and Mrs. Bliss, your son has autism.” I can’t even imagine the dread those parents must feel when being sold the “no way out” approach to autism. Because we were broke, we were spared this. We never got a set of blinders or a list of therapies to help us cope.

I didn’t want to cope. I wanted to cure this. But, the autism battleground had been trudged by some dedicated people who were far more educated than me, and none of them could find a cure. I knew I had to do it differently. I knew I had to embrace Dougie’s gifts. I remember explaining this to a non-mom girlfriend who reassured me of the value of early interventions like psych drugs and speech therapies. Instead of killing her I dove inside my computer.

One half hour of research solidified the Candida question that kept popping up in my mind. We definitely had it. I had to cut sugar from our diets. A few clicks later I found a woman who lived in my state and had successfully recovered her son from autism. I sent her an email and she called me the next day. She gave me hope that I could reverse Dougie’s condition with diet. We talked for 2 hours and she referred me to the bedrokcommunity.org – who have been my backbone and best friends through this journey.

I was now coming to the deeper understanding of gut health as it relates to brain function. I introduced cultured vegetables and coconut kefir to Dougie’s diet, using a tablespoon to 4oz each day for a month – AND WE GOT EYE CONTACT BACK!! The cultured veggies helped his taste buds accept greens and gluten free grains – AND HE STARTED SAYING “THOMAS THOMAS” after his favorite train. He was getting physically stronger too, and so some more autistic symptoms began to surface. Dougie hand-flapped, licked the floor and the walls, toe-walked, used repetitive language, like “Thomas, Thomas,” and would smash his face into the floor or walls. He was mystified by wheels. But, he was becoming happier and showing it. He still wasn’t responding to his name. His behavior was very hard to handle for me, as I wanted to see more results.

Another month passed and I learned that trusting my gut meant going back to my spirituality. I prayed and meditated a lot. One moment I was blending green sludge for my son to drink and the next I was screaming in excitement and horror over the phone to my mom “I saw bugs in his poop.” Yeah, bugs. Weird stuff. And each time Dougie released something overly nasty in diaper… he gained more skills. The diet was working! But not enough for anyone to believe me.

That hurt.

My mom was so loving and my dad just kept his mouth shut. But everyone was whispering behind our backs…. wondering if the boy was getting enough protein or this or that other nutrient. And, I realized they were wearing blinders too. They too were duped by the “milk does a body good” mindset . My mom, who slaved over delicious home-cooked meals every day of my life, didn’t understand the gift that good food gives our bodies. No one understood me like the moms at the BEDROK community.
Their level of understanding goes beyond diet cures. They helped me realize that Dougie is unique. I could do Body Ecology the generic way and get some pretty great results. Or I could apply it to Dougie’s particular needs, and consider his toxins, and deficiencies — and fully recover him from autism.

We are definitely still learning. We have embraced our son as a unique being with very special talents. His spark shines brighter as we peel away the layers of damage. We no longer focus on curing him. He has a sickness that gets better each day, but it does not define him.
In time, we’ve learned to tweak his diet to address his needs. He has now adapted to a high raw and mostly vegan diet. Something he could’ve never handled in the beginning. He does get brain food like the essential fats of cod liver oil and coconut oil. He drinks about a quart of coconut kefir each day which balances out the good gut bacteria, fills him with minerals, and makes digestion of other foods a breeze. He drinks green smoothies each morning and loooves peas with apple cider vinegar. The kid craves spirulina now! What a gift!

By first focusing on his gut, we’ve prepared him to eat a wider variety of foods. As long as he gets his cultured foods, he can handle sweeter fruits, beans, and grains much better than before. In the last 2 months he went from speaking in two-word sentences to complex sentences.

We embrace each moment for what it can teach us.

We study poop, tongues and skin color. We rely on our instincts, our research and our friends who are in the same boat. To date, we have only done one test to confirm the presence of heavy metals from vaccines and environment.

My almost four year old drinks green, plays air guitar, and is beginning to read. What more could a mommy ask for. He IS my dream come true!

I’d love to help you create Bliss in your life through healthy eating! Contact me for your personalized session!

 

Looking for some Major Healing like our family had? Check out our 3 Days to Bliss Toolkit…Free!

Should the Validity of Vaccine Poisoning Be up for Debate? Dougie and I think NOT!

This post is an oldie form our Heal Artfully Site. We’re bringing all of those blogs over here to BlissedLife in order to solidify our message in one space.


The vaccine debate is certainly not over, but we feel that we are better educated and armed with tools to keep us healthy and safe from the anger that fueled this post. Such is the journey of the Blissed Life

artcle first published on ageofautism.com October 2008

Letter_writingBy Gina Laverde

Today I left dishes piled in the sink and butternut squash squished into the carpet because news of the “battle” between mom-actresses Jenny McCarthy and Amanda Peet urged me to write. Both parents undoubtedly care and believe they are working for a necessary cause. However, this war between two young non-doctor icons really cheapens the debate over the safety of vaccines. Mothers can heal our children. We do it all the time. I don’t want parents to become disillusioned by the sugar-coated poll they’ve got going on at Ecorazzi today. I am disgusted that my son suffers from documented metal poisonings, and media thinks it’s a good idea to stage a fight between parents of two completely different types of children. Is it really so important to decide who’s right?

Open Letters to Jenny McCarthy and Amanda Peet: Jenny first.

Jenny,

I never cry about autism. But, Jenny, I cried through the first 12 pages of “Louder than Words.”

I sunk into the book, dripped tears on the pages – then looked up and realized I was sitting in the middle of the Borders Books on State Street in Chicago. I finished the entire book there in the store, sitting on one of those little kid proof chairs. People stared. And, I thanked God that I missed my train to Detroit, so that I had the opportunity alone to read your words. I cried when I saw you on Oprah. I cried as I watched you speak to Eckhart Tolle on Skype. And today, the tears welled up when I realized the obstacles you’ve endured for daring to make life safer for children like mine.

I cried because I hate to think of a nation that allows children to remain sick for the sake of money and makes a mockery out of those who suffer.

Strong moms like you who confront the media, the AAP and others who claim that poison is somehow no longer poisonous when injected into a three -hour-old boy through a syringe, make it easier for main-stream moms to relate to these dangers. Children are being saved because of your work.

Thank you. Thank you for helping open my eyes to the real dangers of vaccines. The danger of not being “allowed” to freely speak the truth in a way that can save our children. The dangers of misinterpreting scientific information.

Thank you for connecting to this community in such a human, honest way. You are a remarkable mother. From one south-side- catholic-chic to another –I know the need to break down barriers and defeat those who say you “can’t.” And, I am here with you advocating freedom of health for all of our little ones.

Keep doing what you’re doing because you are healing the world.

Amanda,

I’m a mom just like you. I understand the depths women are willing to go to for the sake of our children. And, when I discovered what helped my boy recover from autism, I too wanted to spread the word and help as many as I can.

If my son didn’t get infected with autism, I may have looked at parents who don’t vaccinate as primitive or neglectful. I wish I had done my research before deciding to go through with the shots. Luckily, your research proved beneficial and your child didn’t suffer an adverse reaction. I pray that those who follow in your footsteps experience similar results.

Whether one mom is right or wrong about how to raise our children should not be up for public debate. You were right for your child and I am right for mine. In the past, I blindly trusted my doctors and tried to enjoy the benefits of natural health while having the protection of western medicine.

Unfortunately, it didn’t work out as I planned. And, now I am detoxing my son.

Amanda, please understand that all babies are not like yours. Some may be predisposed to disrupted natural detox. The induced T2 immune response from vaccines may keep them from releasing properly (HERE.) For whatever reason, Amanda, it seems that as we inject infants and children with known poisons, we continue to see an increase of the severe gut/brain inflammation (HERE) known as autism.

As far as I can see, immunizations do protect against the spread of infectious disease. But, where’s the independent study that proves this? What about other amazing natural ways of boosting the immune system? My son hasn’t had a cold in two years.

Do you really believe that vaccines are safe enough as they are? As a mom, wouldn’t you like to see my son tolerate them? Doesn’t he deserve to be immunized in a way that won’t harm him? And, furthermore, if they are truly the answer — then why would you need to worry about your child becoming infected by an un-vaxed peer?

Jenny McCarthy, and moms like her are simply begging that parents be given the right to choose not to inject hazardous chemicals into their babies. But, we are also calling for the greening of all immunizations.

I want vaccinations to work. I want them to protect against contagious diseases while not harming the immune system. But, since we are all unique individuals, we may not all be able to reap the benefits.

I urge you to look into who published the studies that you researched. I urge you to consider their motives.

Do vaccines need a spokeswoman? Do you speak for a drug or a child?

Children with autism need a voice. Today I am that voice. When more folks are out there blindly touting vaccines – autism grows. Your stance saddens me, but I want to believe that it simply comes from a mother who trusted the research she read.

Let us empower parents to heal their children. Media like this only conditions us to stop trusting our guts and expanding our knowledge.

Gina

Autism Recovery Videos: Dougie’s Dad Speaks Out About autism Recovery

This Article was first Published on BodyEcology.com in April 2010.

Today, Dougie’s father, Doug has shared his experience as a dad on this journey to help his son recover. Body Ecology was the first step in really helping little Dougie regain his health. But, as his dad puts it, it was a struggle for him to understand the importance of diet until he tried it on himself. Doug’s candidness and honesty are an inspiration to any parent.
Q: Doug, will you share your feelings about how you discovered that your son had autism?

A: I would love for those reading this interview to know that when we brought Dougie home from the hospital, he rolled to his side at two days old. He made eye contact with us. He slept through the nights, loved to be held and even came on dates with my wife and me. He was beginning to walk and talk at eight months old. He was pointing. He remembered relatives.

We started him on organic baby foods when he was around seven months old. He absolutely loved zucchini squash, rice cereal, spinach and blueberries. Gina often made baby food from scratch. We were so in love with our little guy. We would have family dinners where we sat him on a cushion between us, and talked to him as if he were an adult just like us. It was just so much fun!

We made all of our Well-Visits to the pediatrician and were so excited that our son was never sick. Other children around us were sick all of the time.

Until my beautiful, alert, active baby boy regressed from all smiles to tantrums, illness, and eventually –loss of eye contact, loss of language and stopped wanting me to hold him — the only thing I ever understood about autism, I learned from the movie, Rain Man. My wife was the first person to mention the word “autism” to me regarding Dougie. And I was furious with her. To me, autism was a disability, and my son was not disabled. My son was sick.

I knew something was wrong with him, but I didn’t know what to call it. There were so many layers to what we were experiencing. My son was sick. My son had a toxic overload.

I still refuse to call it autism because I completely disagree with the way that label is used and thrown around these days. So, yes, my son was labeled as having autism. But, I was never one for labels.

I was feeling like I should know what to do, but I had no clue how to help him. Here I was, blessed with this amazing child who needed my help, and I was helpless. It wasn’t about getting him to be like anyone else. You hear that a lot when you attempt to recover your child from “autism.” It was never about that for us. My wife and I have always lived outside the norm on many levels. We just wanted Dougie to thrive. We wanted him to have great health.

I think most people in my shoes would feel the same. We are simply not taught that there are toxins in the environment and that the way we eat can affect our brains and our development. So, how did I feel? I felt angry. And, this lead to so many difficulties between my wife and me.

She just wanted me to come to grips with this idea that Dougie had “something” so that we could work together to get rid of it.

Gina and I couldn’t sit down to talk very much to even come up with a plan for how to make things better. Dougie was so sick that Gina would pass out from exhaustion after spending 24+ hours awake rocking him; walking him or whatever else she could do to soothe him. In the beginning of his health issues, our home would be loud with crying tantrums. Toward the worst part, our home was silent with the fear that Dougie would never communicate with us again. And, as he healed, he went through months of dangerous behaviors, no sleep and sadness.

For a long time, Gina just held the emotional, and physical burden of this all. And I buried my pain. Gina never stopped working. If Dougie slept she was on the computer looking for answers to help him. She wasn’t talking to me much because I didn’t understand her. I missed her.

Both of us were so young and confused that I feel grateful that we found answers to make it out. But, I have to admit; there were times when I didn’t see that light at the end of the tunnel. Gina says she couldn’t talk to me because she had to focus on the positive in order to pull our family out of the situation. It seems like so long ago that we were in that place in our lives.
Q:   How did you feel about the diet changes in the beginning?

A: I resented these changes for sure. When we found Body Ecology my son was physically ill with viral and bacterial infections. He didn’t want to eat anything. The antibiotics he was on completely killed his taste for vegetables and healthy food. Gina told me this was called candida, a yeast overgrowth that becomes pathogenic, feeds on sugars and causes us to crave processed foods. She assured me that she was doing the right thing by introducing healthy foods and fermented foods.

We could get an occasional French fry into Dougie, but that’s about it. So, when my wife wanted to give him this sour smelling coconut drink, coconut kefir, that took days to make and would spill everywhere when Dougie spit it out – after a long day’s work, I really resented this. I knew that if I had given Dougie a fry or a cracker he would settle down and be happy. And, we would be able to get some food into him. When Gina first began Body Ecology with Dougie I did not agree with it at all.

I was afraid he would get malnourished just because he wouldn’t eat at all. In hindsight, we were not starving him. Gina was giving him foods he liked between bites of Body Ecology style foods. And, it didn’t take too long before we found some foods that he really liked. Stevia became a savior for us. Because of its sweet taste, he loved it on anything from quinoa, to kefir and even his cultured vegetables.

I was a meat and potato fan myself. And soon, my wife, who once made me a one-pound burger – the best burger I’d ever had, was refusing to make the dinners I loved because she felt they were toxic to have in the house.

Dougie didn’t seem to like the food. And, I would sit there and have to listen to him tantrum while his mom struggled to get him to eat a green bean or a piece of spinach – things he previously loved.

Now, I see the stress that my disapproval caused our family. I believe that even if Dougie didn’t understand my words, he certainly understood my negative energy; I didn’t make these changes easier on them in the beginning.

Really, in almost no time, Dougie was eating fermented foods, loving quinoa and vegetables and gesturing for green smoothies. This was a great thing. When he started loving the foods I was totally fine with the diet changes. His health improved right away after beginning Body Ecology and he hasn’t needed medications for the last three and a half years.

But, it even took me a while to catch on that the diet was the reason he began to heal. I just attributed it to my wife’s healing abilities. I was still sneaking my fast food on the side and still really feeling confused about what was going on at home.

But, Gina began to get happier too. She began calling me at work to tell me that Dougie threw a ball to her or called her mama or pretended to talk on the phone. When Dougie started to heal I would receive 5-10 calls from Gina each day. We were so excited about his progress.
Q: What did you do to change things around for your family?

A: For a long time I hid behind the idea that I did what I could when I was home, but that my role in the family was that of the financial provider. In the beginning, when I would step in the door after work, it was like I entered a disaster area. I never could understand how our little apartment got so messy with green gooey smoothie spills, broken toys and our child, still crying like he’d been in the morning when I left.

I never came home to a happy family anymore. That was rough.

I argued with Gina over nonsense, like stating that I was doing my half by working and she was not doing her half because our house was a mess and our child’s and her health were disastrous.

But, Dads – Listen up – Taking care of a child who is recovering from a severe toxic overload and working a 9-5 corporate job are not equal jobs. I was not doing HALF. I was barely doing my share.

So you know what I did? I finally gave in and began implementing Body Ecology on myself. I gave up pizza, bread and candy. It was so hard at first. But, it was literally the only way I could see and feel the effects of this diet. It wasn’t long before I realized that I could still eat delicious foods, even the foods I loved with some minor adjustments. Quinoa is a great replacement for pasta and rice. Green smoothes take some getting used to, but man, do they make you feel good. I literally felt like the good food I was eating was making my cravings for sweets and junk foods disappear. In the beginning, I would get angry with Gina when she told me that I probably had a candida yeast infection too, like Dougie and her. I guess I just wasn’t ready to heal. But, now that I feel the effects of the fermented foods, green smoothies and proper food combining I am healthier than I’ve ever been.

Body Ecology and raw foods reduced my stress, gave me energy and helped me deal with my own health issues.

Once I did that, I was able to jump on board with all of the changes Gina was making for our health. With my support, we felt like a team again and the energy in our home really settled down.

We believe that it’s very important to create structure in a family. In the beginning when I was eating differently than Dougie, I know he felt strange. Now that we all eat the same way, we are one solid unit. Dougie knows that he is cool for eating cultured foods.

Then, besides Body Ecology dietary changes, Gina and I decided to take our healing one step further and simplify and detoxify our home environment. We got rid of Our TV, microwave, washer and dryer, house phone and desktop computer to reduce electromagnetic fields. We keep cell phones and a laptop, but we unplug all electricity when we’re not using it and we don’t let Dougie use the phone.

We made a commitment to cook only in non-toxic cookware or keep our food raw. We got rid of toys that had any toxic chemicals in them – sadly this was most of our toys at this point. And now, our most recent step was to move our family to a warmer climate where it’s easier for Dougie’s body to heal.

We never had any real funds to help Dougie recover. We were able to accomplish all of this with hard work, research and a lot of faith that he would get better. If it seems crazy that we got rid of his toys – it’s not! We now spend much more time together in nature. We make art, ride bikes, go rock climbing – all things that are also very healing.

Green smoothies are highly nutritious and gentle on the digestive tract. Try adding some Vitamineral Greens, Spirulina, or even Body Ecology’s Potent Proteins to your green smoothie for a heightened nutritional value.
Q: What was the most important step you took to help your family connect during this time?

A: We needed balance. In our family, that meant beginning by eating healthfully and eating together in a peaceful manner. I had to join in on eating the foods that Dougie needed for recovery. We created love and peace at the table where there was once fighting and chaos. Because of this, our son can look at eating as an enjoyable experience rather than a struggle.

Families need to get on the same page and stick together. Whether you are the mom or the dad of the affected child, trust each other. If one of you discovers an answer, decide together to make that your plan. Act it out together. Support each other.
Q: What does autism recovery mean to you?

A: Autism recovery means that Dougie is engaging in social interaction now. He wants to talk to people. He introduces himself to kids and asks them to play with him. Dougie can communicate his needs to us. He understands us when we talk and is interested learning more. He asks so many questions. When he doesn’t understand something he tells us.

Once his digestion was clean, our main focus was eliminating behaviors that caused harm to Dougie, like hitting himself, putting everything in his mouth, banging his head – he no longer has these behaviors. Next, we wanted to be sure that Dougie would be safe in social situations, like understanding to stop before crossing the street – He now totally gets it.

Dougie is happy. He laughs and makes jokes. He makes up his own songs and plays pretend. Dougie can express his feelings. He can tell us what he wants.

Just yesterday he said “ It’s just so boring here, dad. I want to go ride my bike.” You can’t imagine how my heart filled up because my son knew how to express that he was bored.

Autism recovery means that nobody knows my son had autism. Nobody knows that he was even sick. My son is happy and everything about him shines. He is a rock star and I am so thankful to know him.

I’d love to help you create Bliss in your life through healthy eating! Contact me for your personalized session!

 

If you dug this piece and want more tips for tapping into your own intuition, click here to get your free 3 Days to Bliss-Ness Toolkit — chock-full of mantras, recipes and exercises you’ll LOVE!

About autism Recovery

This post is from january 2011. We are moving all of our Heal Artfully posts over here to Blissed Lfe in order to solidify our message in one beautiful space.

My time for the last 5 years has been spent working closely with families to restore and improve their health. It’s been a blast and is teaching me so much about life.

As children get well, and families experience the ups and downs of healing –I gain perspective on what autism really means. A few years back, I wrote “Autism Undone” to help explain to my mom  and family what was going on in my son’s life and body. Since then, I get daily emails about how that little article has helped so many of you. I am stoked that it has. But I have so much more to share.

Autism has deep spiritual and energetic connections that I only touched on in this article. I have so much to share about how we are healing and how we are embracing the gifts of autism. When I said that children with autism have the key to saving the world, I didn’t even know how deeply correct I was.

So, as you may have guessed, I am writing a book and it will be done soon. But, because I want you to benefit more from the gifts that I  have been given, I will be posting helpful snippets of the book here on this blog.

My book will cover the spiritual, emotional, energetic and physical connections to the causes of autism as I see it from experiences with my son and my clients, as well as information that has been granted to me through research and (nothing less than) divine intervention. I also will reveal our exact diets and recipes (as it may help you), and everything else we did to get where we are.

You know.. I don’t much like labels. That’s why I wanted to undo and bring out the truth of the diverse meanings behind the autism label. My book also covers how my family, thanks to my husband, has detached form the label.

It’s gonna be  a rockin book and a rockin’ year. Stay tuned for tons more helpful blogs while you wait.

Happy New Year!

If any of you are interested in kick-starting your family’s healing I’m offering 1 hr consults that include a personal written follow-up and a huge intro pack that teaches Body Ecology, Raw Foods, Intuitive Eating, Recipes, Sensory Exercises, Colon Therapy, Seasonal Eating and so much more. email me @ Gina@BlissedLLife.com for more info

I’d love to help you create Bliss in your life through healthy eating! Contact me for your personalized session!

 

Looking for some Major Healing like our family had? Check out our 3 Days to Bliss Toolkit…Free!

Namaste,

Gina

Autism Recovery Videos: Bio Age Algae Concentrates (BioSuperfood) for autism Recovery

This was written in the summer of 2009. We’re moving all of our articles from Heal Artfully over here to Blissed Life in order to solidify our mission in one place.

…We’ve had quite an amazing summer full of healing, learning and love! We’ve been on the move and are in transition from Chicago to L.A. so please forgive the late update on Dougie’s experience with Bioage algae supplements.

He has been using them now for just over 2 months and we continue to see improvements. BUT, I must warn that he went through some detox and we did have to tweak the dosage in order for us to feel comfortable with the supplement.

If you are considering using this for yourselves or your children I think it’s a fabulous idea. You can email Dr. Roland Thomas at Roland@Bioage.com for information on the proper dosage and blend for you.

Here is a breakdown of what we have seen. The good, the bad and the honest!

The Doctor’s suggested dosage based on email correspondence of Dougie’s condition:

Three capsules of F2 and three capsules of F3 alternated throughout the day and combined with lots of healthy water.

As I have stated before, these micro algae concentrates are hailed to be the perfect food, offering the body the ability to HEAL. So, unlike other supplements that are intended to “fix something” it gets absorbed and helps create vitamins in the gut as well as absorb nutrition from other foods. They are designed to fix the source of the problem.

Doctor Thomas also suggested that we try Bio Age without any other supplements. I wasn’t so sure about that. But, our supplements are all whole-food based, like hemp, chia, mineral powders, milk thistle etc. I assumed I would need to cut down on them, but didn’t want to take them all away.

It turned out that after 2 pills in one day Dougie was so wiped out that he took a five hour nap. This continued for a week and we were only able to get 2 pills (1 of each) into him. There just wasn’t enough time for more.

After 2 weeks on the supplement I was able to get all 6 pills into his system but couldn’t find much more time for other supps.  He remained on a very healthy diet (mostly raw vegan and Body Ecology).

We noticed improvements in fine motor skills right away. He began cutting with scissors and using a pen. He was also talking more (which is usual for him. His speech improves EVERY day).

We only had Dougie on the 6 pill suggested regime for three days when he really started to seem very unsettled. Even with his improved speech and fine motor skills, he began stuttering a lot of his speech and he began crying so much more. He spent lots of time crying and even began hitting himself on the head, throwing himself to the ground and sometimes tripping and falling.  Some of his injury was out of unsteadiness and some was out of frustration. So he was falling both accidentally and intentinally.

I couldn’t help but feel that his body was releasing toxins of some sort.

I wrote Dr. Thomas about my concerns and this is what he said:

IT IS A PROCESS…  THE REGULATING HYPOTHALAMUS-AXIS IS ENGAGED AND THE CHRONIC PATTERNS ARE BEING ADDRESS OVER TIME…  IN TIME EVEN THE HYPOTHALAMUS GETS BETTER ALONG WITH THE GLANDS, THE ORGANS AND ALL THEIR INDIVIDUAL METABOLIC FUNCTION….  BUT NEVER FORGET THAT IT IS A WHOLE SYSTEM WORKING IN HARMONY…

I now feel that this is a great supplement. But, since we are on such great diet, it may be a bit too much for him to handle so much of it. His body is working hard to heal each day.

Dougie now takes 1-2 of each pill (F2 and F3) every day. His body cannot handle much more. He is healing wonderfully. The Bioage makes him quite tired and he is taking great naps. He wakes up refreshed and calm. He used to often wake up crying and unsettled.

Check out this video to see some of our earlier triumphs.  Much more has happened and I will share soooooooooooooooooooooon!

Vodpod videos no longer available.

more about “The Magic of Bio Age Algae for autis…“, posted with vodpod

Fermented Quinoa Milk

 

The Incas knew about this magical grain…. have you tried it yet?

If you haven’t already added quinoa to your diet, you probably should. This grain-like gluten-free seed is so versatile and absolutely delish.

I used it to make my vegan guacamole burgers last week, I use it in salads, wraps and even make milk out of it.

You can make quinoa milk much like you make rice milk or almond milk and  add  it to smoothies, soups or chocolate — YUM!  Of course, I like to take it one step farther.

I’ve been known to ferment just about anything I get my hands on, and why not? Fermented foods are the most powerful of all super foods because they are predigested.

When you ferment quinoa milk you add living bacteria and enzymes to it. These bacteria live in your digestive system and create your immunity.

Make your own fermented quinoa milk

Equiptment

  1. High speed blender
  2. 2 quart sized sterile glass jars with lids
  3. nut milk bag or strainer

Ingredients

2 cups raw quinoa ( I buy mine in bulk)

1 quart pure water

pinch sea salt

1/4 cup coconut kefir, home-made kefir or strong probiotic powder.

Optional

vanilla, stevia or agave, mesquite, maca

Process

  1. Soak your quinoa overnight in quart-sized  glass container with a pinch of sea salt ( in fridge or on the counter)
  2. Rinse quinoa and add to blender with 1 quart pure water
  3. Blend for 30 seconds
  4. Drain quinoa pulp by using a nut-milk bag (found at natural grocers) or a strainer
  5. Pour the liquid into a sterile glass jar
  6. add 1/4 cup kefir or tbsp probiotic powder and seal jar
  7. Make sure jar is sealed and clean
  8. Set out to ferment at 70-80 degrees for 18-24 hours
  9. Drink as is or add sweetener and flavors listed above

This is so much healthier than the store-bought pasteurized probiotic drinks, because it doesn’t contain added sugars, colors or preservatives. It’s raw, its delicious and I hope you love it.

photo credit: “Hand in Quinoa” by:FranUlloa

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Raw Cream of Mushroom Soup (with hidden ferments)

Cream of Mushroom Soup
Image by su-lin via Flickr

We eat raw, living foods whenever we can. But using raw food for autism recovery means paying extra special care to the digestibility of the food and the sugar content.

I’ve worked with hundreds of children on the autism spectrum, and ALL of them have had gut imbalances including candida (yeast), food intolerance, allergies, and  nutrient deficiencies. So, we’ve got some pretty delicate systems here. Finding a balance of green, raw, fermented and blended (easily absorbable) food is a must. We also keep as close to the  Body Ecology principles of food combining (fruit is eaten alone, on an empty stomach,  and proteins are not combined with carbs) and  80/20 (keeping our meals 80% vegetable and 20% protein or carb) as possible. This ensures that we can get the most nutrient bang per bite.

This recipe is blended and contains live beneficial bacteria that can help you digest it.  It also contains some nuts — which do cause reactions for some people.  I wouldn’t call this one of my healing recipes but, it’s a darn delish way to enjoy raw food.

Raw Cream of Mushroom Soup (with hidden ferments)

Ingredients:

1 lb of mushrooms (shitake and maitake are delish and healing)

½ cup olive oil

1 tsp sea salt

pinches of black pepper, oregano, thyme, sage, pinch nutmeg and any other herbs you may like

3 cups  homemade Brazil nut milk (recipe below)

½ cup pine nut cheese

Process:

Marinate 1 lb of mushrooms (I  get a bag from farmers mkt.. any kind you like will do) with ½ cup olive oil, 1 tsp sea salt, black pepper, oregano, thyme, sage, pinch nutmeg and any other herbs you may like for about an hour. Then, blend the entire mixture with 3 cups  homemade Brazil nut milk and ½ cup pine nut cheese. You can warm this on the stove top or blend in vitamix until warm. We like to have this with peas. Then again, we simply love peas.

Tiny Kick in the Pants:

Add some ume boshi plum vinegar to the end result before you eat.

I like Brazil nut milk with this recipe. You can make it by soaking 3 cups of Brazil nuts in enough water to cover them for about a day. Then, rinse the nuts and add to your blender with 6 cups of water. Blend for about 30 seconds and  strain the pulp through a nut milk bag (or strainer). The liquid is “nut milk,” and the pulp can be used in muffins, crackers and raw breads.

Mangia!

G