Greatest GIFT – Naomi Jeremiah

Faith, God's Wisdom, journey to healthy living, Life and dreams – Naomi Jeremiah


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Fruits for Breakfast!

I took a break from doing veggie and fruit smoothies and celery juicing for breakfast first week of July this year. I could feel my system needed a change. I’m completely off from any prescribed BP medication since last year and I feel good without those horrible side effects that came with BP med! My cardiologist couldn’t agree more. He was happy with my BP readings without the medication in my system, but instead it’s with the help of plant based eating daily.

Spring 2019 was dealing mostly with sinus allergy that seemed like forever. I thought the sneezing and runny nose would be my company for a while there. Even with smoothies and juicing, the sinus battle continued. I’ve ordered from Amazon anything Elderberry, Echinacea, Vicks Vaporub and inhaler and humidifier.

Spring was a struggle; but the Spring sun was a relief. I always enjoy the Spring sun, way too beautiful.

Since I stopped juicing and drinking homemade smoothies, which I have done mostly since 2016, I’ve decided to try eating fruits for breakfast this summer. There’s abundance of fruits in summertime so I am taking advantage of the many fruit choices. Although, Winter last year and Spring 2019, I was consuming citrus like oranges, pumelos, grapefruits aside from eating apples.

Oatmeal was my favorite morning warm ups. I kept up with veggie salads as sides for lunch. My BP readings stayed down and good. I’ve maintained my weight and kept myself busy with organizing and getting rid of dust collectors and clutters.

When I started fruits only for breakfast, my energy heightened much better than doing smoothies and celery juice. I’ve realized, too, that when I juiced fruits, it did not agree with my system as I’ve lost the fiber my body needs. However, when I eat whole fruits; three or four small servings of different kinds of fruits, I feel great! With veggie salads, all organic, like arugula, different varieties of cucumbers, romaine, tomatoes, avocados for lunch and a main daily homemade dish of small serving of either fish, or lean chicken or lean meat, I am set for the next hours of intermittent fasting daily. I’ve incorporated IF since 2016 and my sleeping patterns and circadian rhythms are at its best! Sleep has always been sweet. Unless, something is worrying me or there are exciting events the next day that would keep me tossing and turning, most of my sleeping hours are so satisfying. I found out that by the time I am ready for bed, all the food I’ve eaten have almost been fully digested by the time I hit the bed, so all my system has to do is repairing and healing what needs to be healed in my body while I’m asleep. Eating fruits in the morning has lowered my blood pressure naturally, much better readings than with smoothies and juicing.

There are some days I’d get off IF when travelling or eating out. If I get lucky, and I did not eat restaurants’ foods which cause heartburn, my sleep will still be okay. Sometimes, I need that break, but the next day, I’d go back to my eating schedules to maintain my weight. It’s not easy especially when I splurge on some sweet desserts and bread. But I need to focus for the sake of my blood pressure.

As we get older, blood pressure spikes especially if we are not eating right. I’ve learned that high blood pressure leads to so many illnesses. It’s an indicator when something is wrong in our body. It’s a signal of some future events that are detrimental to our health. I’ve learned of this after thorough research and personal experiences when I started getting aware of this silent killer. High blood pressure almost always show up as one of the contributing factors to illnesses when diagnosed with heart disease, heart failure, stroke, diabetes, high cholesterol, kidney disease, Adrenal and thyroid disorders, sleep apnea as one of the few known causes associated with high blood pressure.

So, organic fruits for breakfast to the rescue! So many fruit choices, including bananas, apples, cherries… I love summer!

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Cold bedroom, best sleep!

This morning, I woke up and the room temperature was 62 degrees F. That is very cold for me. But when it’s cold in the bedroom, I always get the most relaxing, peaceful and long slumber. sleep7

I’ve been so fortunate for a while now that I am able to get a good shut eye, at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep. It was not always a great sleep in the past for me. I had trouble sleeping before and I would wake up tired.

Two years ago, I’ve decided to find ways to correct my sleeping habits in the hope that I can cure my insomnia or sleep disorder. Through the latter part of my adult life, good sleep was very hard to achieve.sleep2 I resorted into taking over the counter sleeping pills, and then switched into more natural sleep aid, like Melatonin and Valerian. They did not really help that much. From time to time when I was very tired, I would doze off and get maybe 4 to 6 hours of sleep. For one thing my mind was so active, mostly worrying about the next day’s work activity or maybe personal issues would interrupt my sleep.

 

The internet and cell phones did not help and when social media and smart phones came along, sleeping was a distraction more than a necessity. sleep9Especially when some research group was saying you don’t need to have an eight hour of sleep. It’s different in each individual. Not everybody have the same sleeping requirements. So that played in my mind and as long as I’d get to sleep, even just five hours a night, I will be okay. I did not have a sleeping schedule set. Whenever I feel sleepy, that was the time. But as time went by, the less sleep I was getting. I had to rely on over the counter sleeping medication on nights when I was so wide awake. My mind was going 100 miles per hour thinking of so many things.

On one of our vacation road trips, I found a book written by Dr. Don Colbert entitled The Bible Cure for Sleep Disorders. The book gave way for me to embark and research about achieving a natural way to get good sleep.

Work With Your Wake/Sleep Cycles
Going to bed and waking up at the same time each day can help to set a rhythm to your sleep cycle and prompt your body to recognize when rest time is approaching. A morning ritual such as meditation or yoga that reduces your stress can be extremely beneficial – and this can also be repeated before sleep.

Move your body earlier in the day and avoid anything too vigorous at night, if possible. Movement, particularly movement that gets the heart rate up or is physically exerting, typically activates the sympathetic nervous system making you alert and awake, and subsequently decreases your melatonin (sleep hormone) production. Instead, in the evening, allow yourself time to slow down, unwind and stimulate your sleep neurotransmitters. Around 60 to 90 minutes before sleep, turn off your “devices”, turn the lights down and maybe include some meditation or light reading. Finding sleep hygiene that works for you is incredibly important, but these are great starting points for everyone. from: https://www.foodmatters.com/article/when-sleep-is-elusive-getting-quality-rest?fbclid=IwAR2n_bPPRMTPltLnxchyez6DdCw09nZAl8m5oS-ftwXDDv2kSMigL4Kszpg

The first thing I’ve changed was my sleeping schedule. I started sleeping at the same time at night and waking up at the same time in the morning. It took time changing the bad sleeping habit. I found a good herbal sleep medicine at Sprouts. It’s called Deep Sleep.deepsleep2 It doesn’t have side effects deepsleepso it’s safe to use. With Deep Sleep, it helped me to make a transition from a poor quality of sleep to a rhythmic sleep cycle. I try not to take it every night if I don’t have to.  When I am very sleepy, I would skip it. sleep4

I made it a point to turn off my desktop computer two hours before bed. I give myself time to relax. I brush my teeth two hours before I go to bed as I find that brushing my teeth right before bed makes me wide awake.

What helps me to stay asleep is making sure that I’m done with my daily water intake, which is 8 glasses a day, about 4 to 5 hours before bed, and not eating before bedtime. That’s where my intermittent fasting works in my favor. I stopped eating by 4 to 5 pm at the latest. It settles my stomach and most of the food I’ve eaten have digested by the time I get to bed. I don’t experience heartburn that can interrupt with sleep. I don’t take any medication nor supplement I discovered could interrupt with my sleep. Celery juice and smoothies and vegetables and fruits had helped me settle my stomach at night.

“Set your smart thermostat to slowly lower your home’s temperature starting at dinner time and ending at 65 degrees when bedtime rolls around. This gradual loss of temperature and light can really help stoke the motivation to sleep.” https://www.menshealth.com/health/a25628788/how-to-get-more-sleep-expert/

In winter, I would turn off the central heat and by the time I’m in bed the bedroom is getting cold. During warm days, I set my air cooling thermostat to 68 degrees, but now that I know that I can have a good sleep at 62 degrees under three blankets and a thick comforter, I might settle for 65 degrees.

What I find so helpful that relaxes my mind is reading my daily Bible devotional before bed. As I meditate on God’s Word, my mind relaxes and what I have read about God’s goodness and faithfulness and His love for us completely take over my mind. Thankfulness and gratefulness to God clears my mind of worry, concern and fear and giving my burden to Him stop the mind from self-involved thoughts. Afterwards, I would do my deep breathing of 4-7-8 about 8 timesbreathing and I’m ready for a restful shut eye.

And If I get lucky, I might remember my dream that I usually have about the time I would wake up. And I remember a lot of my dreams since I no longer deprive myself of a much needed sleep every night. I actually have a sleep journal and it’s fun to go back and review what I wrote from time to time.

When I get to Stage 5 of my sleep, I can feel, when I wake up in the morning, that I had a restful, long and peaceful sleep and a deep sleep at that. I’m getting a lot of them lately, the cold weather must have aided as well.sleep3

“What is deep sleep and how much do we need of it?

Some studies have shown that your deep sleep should at least be 20% of your overall sleep. It means that since most adults need 8-9 hours of sleep, they will need about 1.6-1.8 hours of deep sleep to feel fully functional next day.”  from: newhealthadvisor.com

What stage of sleep is most important?

For a quick review of the four stages of sleep:
Stage 1 (N1): This is the lightest sleep, lasting as little as five minutes,…
Stage 2 (N2): This light sleep is also fairly easy to be awoken from,…
Stage 3 (N3; formerly N3 and N4): This is deep sleep, during which the body performs maintenance…
Stage 5: REM sleep is the only sleep stage in which we dream.

from: soundsleephealth.com   sleep

Why is REM sleep important?

REM sleep is important because it is the restorative part of our sleep cycle. Typically, you begin the sleep cycle with a period of non-REM sleep followed by a very short period of REM sleep.  from: azumio.com

How much sleep does an adult need?

An average adult needs between 7.5 and 8 hours of sleep per night.

Can you get too much deep sleep?

According to New Health Advisor, adults 18 and older need anywhere from 1.5-1.8 hours of deep sleep per night, which is about 20% of your overall sleep. Some people, however, may find they need more in order to feel fully rested. There’s no such thing as too much deep sleep.  from: eightsleep.com   sleep6


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Bananas, my natural healer!

Cloudy days have been overstaying their welcome more this time of the year than the previous years in our woods. I have to find ways to combat SAD (seasonal affected disorder) for dark clouds affect my mood every year. From September to February, I feel sometimes, in a sad mood, not depressed but just a feeling of being under the clouds. It somehow triggers memories of years gone by, that easily make me emotional, though I’m able to manage it well, and I have to thank God for that.

It’s not as worse as when we used to live in California. In California, when it hit the month of September, there’s a gloomy touch in the air when Fall season arrives. It’s still sunny, but you can feel the dampness, especially the area where we used to live being close to the beach. I used to start getting sick in September without fail. My SAD got some relief when I was told at a health store that Gaba plus can help with SAD. And it did, but I cannot take it long term as it has a side effect.

When I’ve embraced eating plant based food, where I lost a lot of weight, I started to get familiarized with the benefits of each vegetable and fruit I’ve been eating. This year, the Celery juice has been giving me a lot of energy and it helps with SAD during this time of the year. I started taking calcium with Vitamin D3 and it’s been helping with SAD also. I’ve added more bananas in my fruit daily intake and I’ve discovered that it helps with SAD also! What do you know!

If You Think Bananas Are Just For Monkeys, Think Againbananas

These 25 ways to use and eat bananas will blow your mind!

1. Bananas help overcome depression due to high levels of tryptophan, which is converted into serotonin — the happy-mood brain neurotransmitter.

2. Eat two bananas before a strenuous workout to pack an energy punch and sustain your blood sugar.

3. Protect against muscle cramps during workouts and night time leg cramps by eating a banana.

4. Counteract calcium loss during urination and build strong bones by supplementing with a banana.

5. Improve your mood and reduce PMS symptoms by eating a banana, bananas5 which regulates blood sugar and produces stress-relieving relaxation.

6. Bananas reduce swelling, protect against type II diabetes, aid weight loss, strengthen the nervous system, and help with the production of white blood cells, all due to high levels of vitamin B-6.

7. Strengthen your blood and relieve anemia with the added iron from bananas.

8. High in potassium and low in salt, bananas are officially recognized by the FDA as being able to lower blood pressure and protect against heart attack and stroke.bananas3

9. Eating Bananas For Digestion
Rich in pectin, bananas aid digestion and gently chelate toxins and heavy metals from the body.

10. Bananas act as a prebiotic, stimulating the growth of friendly bacteria in the bowel. They also produce digestive enzymes to assist in absorbing nutrients.

11. Constipated? High fiber in bananas can help normalize bowel motility.

12. Got the runs? Bananas are soothing to the digestive tract and help restore lost electrolytes after diarrhea.

13. Bananas are a natural antacid, providing relief from acid reflux, heartburn, and GERD.

14. Bananas are the only raw fruit that can be consumed without distress to relieve stomach ulcers by coating the lining of the stomach against corrosive acids.

For Natural Healing From A Simple Banana

15. Eating bananas will help prevent kidney cancer, protects the eyes against macular degeneration and builds strong bones by increasing calcium absorption.

16. Bananas make you smarter and help with learning by making you more alert. Eat a banana before an exam to benefit from the high levels of potassium.

17. Bananas are high in antioxidants, providing protection from free radicals and chronic disease.

18. Eating a banana between meals helps stabilize blood sugar and reduce nausea from morning sickness.

19. Rub a bug bite or hives with the inside of the banana peel to relieve itching and irritation.

20. Control blood sugar and avoid binging between meals by eating a banana.

21. Eating a banana can lower the body temperature and cool you during a fever or on a hot day.

22. The natural mood-enhancer tryptophan helps to relieve Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). bananas4

The list of fruits and vegetables with tryptophan is huge! It calls for another blog to enumerate them.

23. Quitting smoking? Bananas contain high levels of B-vitamins as well as potassium and magnesium to speed recovery from the effects of withdrawal.

24. Remove a wart by placing the inside of a piece of banana peel against the wart and taping it in place.

25. Rub the inside of a banana peel on your leather shoes or handbag and polish with a dry cloth for a quick shine.

Oh, and remember — bananas make great snacks and delicious smoothies.

from: https://www.foodmatters.com/article/25-powerful-reasons-to-eat-bananas?

Last, but not least, my close relationship with God has helped enormously with SAD for before I become a Bible believer Christian, my SAD was more of a depression than anything because it was throughout the year as far as I can remember and would get worse when Fall season starts.

Hopefully, March will bring more sunlight and beautiful days ahead. I always hope for brighter days and they are not far from sight! I can bet on that!


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Where there is no Vision, people cast off Restraint

This is so true in all that we do and see. When people do things outside the guidance of God, people get destroyed. Humans follow what the devil stores in their minds for lack of knowledge on God’s Word written in the Holy Bible. Humans succumb to their anger, fear, hopelessness, bitterness, negativity, and self destruction.

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One morning,  I woke up with a vision and the vision spilled through when I was already had awaken and the Holy Spirit of God was still speaking to my heart. In my dream, there was a group of  friends and relatives who were very angry with me. They were even ready to hurt me for something I did which I thought was to save them. I was doing them a favor, but it did not come out that way in their minds. They were in a judgmental mode and disagreements ensued that all were talking at the same time complaining and unhappy to something I’ve done which I thought were good deeds. But they were ready to cast stones to destroy me. It was a huge effort to explain my side to ease up their anger revolting in their ignorant hearts.

The Holy Spirit of God explained that God has given His instructions (His Word) in the Holy Bible which He inspired. Nothing can be added into them. God wants us to do His will and one of them is to believe in His Son and Jesus’ eternal salvation that He offers. This is His Gift to us. He does not want us to boast on which religion is better.

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The Holy Bible is already His complete Word, but humans like to over emphasize, they like to override His plans and purposes because they feel that there is still lacking in the Holy Bible. There are false prophets after Jesus Christ came, died and resurrected that are contradicting what God and Jesus Christ have already said. The words that come out from their mouths are not what the Holy Bible teaches. They pick and choose the Bible verses that justify their false beliefs and condemn those Bible scriptures that do not align with what they believe in. They come up with all kinds of arguments and doctrines made up by men.

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The Holy Spirit revealed that God already knows the condition of the heart of each one of us. People tend to abuse and twist His Word for their own purposes and leading millions of people to Hades because of the false and added doctrines to what God and Jesus Christ have already established and had been written in the Holy Bible.

In my vision, the Holy Spirit is conveying to me that humans will be in revolt when we tried to correct what they believe in their hearts whether it is based on truth or not. He uses us to share Jesus Christ, His works, His death on the cross, His resurrection and what it means to our eternal salvation. It is a complete work and there’s nothing to be added or to be taken away from it. If they do, it is at their own peril or destruction. Lack of this wisdom and knowledge of what the Holy Bible teaches will get your eternal soul to the path of Hades.LackofKnowledge11

Those who believe in Jesus Christ’s offer of eternal salvation, His work, His death and resurrection and His Power to save us, Jesus offers an immediate presence with God and His Kingdom when they die. You don’t have to add works to it in order to be in heaven in the presence of God. Works are the results and evidence after the saving grace of God which has saved us through faith. No where in the Holy Bible says that you have to do all kinds of works first before you are approved by God. Through what Jesus has done and offer His life for our sins, we are already saved when we accept and receive Him.

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The results of being saved by Jesus here on earth while we are still in this world would bear fruits of good works or good deeds because the Gospel of Jesus Christ will open our eyes, sets us free, make us joyful and hopeful and Jesus Christ wants us to share that Truth, nothing added to it or taken away.

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If our Faith is based on works, that we have to do more even Christ has already done what God has required for us to be saved and be in His presence here on earth and the afterlife, we truly insult God. That is what the message of the vision I had as the Holy Spirit conveyed. If I set aside what the Grace (Jesus Christ) of God has fulfilled and being right with God, His Salvation and being in the presence of God in heaven could be based on Torah or God’s law in the Old Testament, Christ died for nothing. His shedding of the blood was wasted and His resurrection was just that. His soul was resurrected to go to heaven and nothing else. So all the Holy Week and Easter were nothing but just shows for fake holiness. But according to the New Testament, Jesus came back from the dead ALIVE! He was seen alive by 500 people aside from His disciples. Don’t compare this to other miracles because in this TRUTH lies how God planned it all to save us. This is God’s eternal requirement nothing added to it or taken away. This is God’s POWER. God did not say, okay this is done, but you still have to do this and this and this to be in heaven in my presence. Jesus Christ said it is finished! He accomplished what needed to be done, all we need to do is accept this through Faith and Grace and follow Him and live for Him, for we are His branches. Following Him only and believing in His teachings, nothing added or taken out from what the ancient early Christians inspired by God had already written. God is not asking for anything more.

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OurFaithisuseless

We don’t really believe in God, His plans and purposes if there’s more to Jesus Christ shedding His powerful blood. When we added or taken away from God’s Word, then what standard do we hold? The standard of man that’s what, their own doctrines, false prophets and their erroneous interpretations of what God and Jesus Christ in the Holy Bible have already proclaimed to be the Truth.

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Paul said that we are saved by believing in the Gospel of Jesus Christ written in the New Testament. If you add more to Jesus Christ’s finished work, you have been deceived. God will add plagues in your life: fear, hopelessness, bitterness, unhappiness, strife in relationships and many more and will remove your name from the book of life, which means our souls are forever damned in hell.

Weallsinnedandfallshort

You are forever feeling guilty and hopeless because you have to follow the law, God’s glorious standard, like the Ten Commandments; working on your good deeds hoping that God will let you in His Presence because of your good deeds. Our mind is already our battlefield, the center of our sinfulness. We cannot control what the devil can work on: our minds! That’s why we need Jesus Christ and His complete Salvation work.

Jesus said He is our vine, God is the Gardener and we are the branches. vine_branches.jpg

Without holding on to Jesus’s teachings in the New Testament, we will be the same as the rest of the world. We won’t measure up, we will be trying so hard to be good, but deep inside we are not good, we all fall short of the glory of God. Jesus Christ is more than enough. He is the only way to the presence of God and to heaven, no human doctrines can surpass that. He is the light in darkness when we are confused, downtrodden and beaten up by this world’s sinfulness. Jesus Christ is the TRUTH. He died for our sins, He is God incarnate. He is God who came down to earth to save us and give us eternal life when we die and directly spend the afterlife with God and His presence. Don’t believe anything else, but test the Spirits thru God’s written Word in the Holy BibletesttheSpirits Jesus’s TRUTH is written in the Gospel of Luke, John, Matthew and Mark, presided by Paul and Peter and Christ’s other apostles. As His followers, Jesus has given us the Holy Spirit to teach and guide us. Don’t be deceived by feelings and emotions. Test the spirits by God’s Words in the Holy Bible.

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The Healing Process

After that big toe injury I suffered last month, I thought everything was fine because the stabbed wound on my big toe healed properly. Well, so I thought.

Early this month, I woke up in the middle of the night with pain on the right foot where I injured my big toe. I thought I might have twisted or overextended my foot. Turning to the other side made me able to fall back to sleep. But when I woke up the next morning, there was a slight pain that got worse through the day and through the night.Parts Of The Foot Diagram for Human Anatomy Diagram: Ligaments Muscles Foot Anatomy Human Image on Techvi.Com Pics

I applied some sports med crème to ease up the pain concentrated on the muscle or tendon on the middle of the foot, but it did not help some until I took some Tylenol and it reduced the pain. However the foot started to swell and remained swollen for days.

ToeBones

It started to concern me so I saw my primary doctor the next day. He did not see any indication of infection, but confirmed that the right foot was swollen. He prescribed a topical cream and some pills that would reduce the swelling and pain. He ordered blood tests and X-ray for the right foot. I told him about my injured big toe, that it might have something to do with it, but he was more concerned that I might have gout, which is impossible because I am not a constant red meat eater and told him most of my meals consist of veggies and fruits and fish. But to play safe, he said it’s good to cover all the bases. He was also thinking of tendonitis.    ToeBones3

The Foot X-ray came in. There was no bone fracture and no dislocation, but found some bone spurs.  Bone spurs are bony projections that develop along bone edges. Bone spurs (osteophytes) often form where bones meet each other — in the joints. Treatment
If  bone spurs cause pain,  doctor might recommend over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, others), ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or naproxen sodium (Aleve, others), in my case, my doctor prescribed Meloxicam to take one daily.

The medications helped reduced the swelling and the pain. My doctor niece who is in Wales advised me to only take the pills for 5 days at the most, as they are notorious in causing stomach pain on long term use.

To this writing, there’s a little tenderness in the middle muscle of the foot, but most times, the foot is back to normal.

The blood tests came normal, my uric acid levels are normal, which when high and untreated can cause gout.

A high uric acid level, or hyperuricemia, is an excess of uric acid in your blood. Uric acid is produced during the breakdown of purines, which are found in certain foods and are also formed by your body. Once produced, uric acid is carried in your blood and passes through your kidneys, where most of it is filtered out into the urine.

About one in five people has a high uric acid level. It may be related to attacks of gout or the development of kidney stones. But most people with high uric acid levels don’t have any symptoms or related problems.

The other blood test was for the inflammation and there was no inflammation.

These blood tests confirmed to me that my daily diet of vegetables and fruits which are mostly organic, has helped tremendously in my system. ToeBones4

The big toe injury most likely hit my Tendon which created some pain inside. The injury might have affected the Tendon of flexor up to the Flexor hallucis (see diagram above) and the Lumbrical muscles. My husband has told me that even though the wound had healed on the surface of the skin, the inside parts of the foot that got affected by that injury is still healing slowly and my doctor niece said that it takes a little while for the inside parts of the body to heal.

That was a freak accident that happened with my big toe. An experience I will never forget; and that particular knife is now out of my sight. LOL! I’ve had some finger cuts using that same knife. It’s a beautiful looking knife, maybe the reason I’ve liked using it in the kitchen, but it’s dangerous! *laughing*

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The day I went to see my doctor when my right foot was swollen.


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Blood Pressure and Medications

 

systolicHigh blood pressure worries and frustrations in four years time had led me on a mission and a quest to find out about this notorious and scary hypertensive heart disease.

When I gained 35 extra pounds in a matter of five years of quitting my job and relocating, I’ve noticed I became very sluggish and I would feel tired even just after a shower.  I knew that I needed to do something about the changes I was feeling. For one thing, I did not even know that I gained so much weight. I’ve thrown caution to the wind, stopped weighing myself in the morning, enjoyed life and ate out a lot even if there was no special occasion. I’ve eaten sweet desserts way late in the evening, had some ice cream and junk snacks while enjoying internet browsing and watching movies. I was just having the greatest time of my life after working so long and hard in life. It was a time of junk foods that I did not even know were bad for me; and eating out and buying all kinds of processed foods, were part of finally arriving to a period and time that alarm clocks no longer ruled my life. I could be up almost all night, waking up late in the morning with no set sleep schedule. Hey, this was what life was all about after all!

Then came a warning sign. To compensate with bad eating habits, I would do my treadmill workout. At first I was able to still do high speed intensity and uphill workouts. But then one day, I had a bad fall while sort of running on our hallway to catch an important life event on video. It was a bad tumble on a hard concrete flooring, chest first. A few months later, when I felt okay to go back to exercising, I started feeling chest pains while tread milling. I would stop working out for days, and returned back when the pain was gone, but there was still the same nagging chest pains.

One night I woke up with this worse chest pain on my left side that my hubby had to take me to the emergency. Thank goodness, it was not a heart attack. However, the emergency doctor suggested that I see a cardiologist to be safe and sure that my heart is not weakening. The following day after seeing a cardiologist, he wrote me a prescription for Nitrostat to take as needed should I experience chest pains again. The cardio visit led to another visit as he wanted me to undergo some tests. I declined having one of them because of what was written about the possible bad reactions to the test. The doctor mentioned that my blood pressure was in a high range. He suggested that it might be the cause of my chest pains.

Knowing nothing about high blood pressure, I did not know where to start. But it led me to start researching about it. I’ve read that caffeine intake can elevate blood pressure. I stopped drinking tea and coffee, not even decaf, and the chest pains subsided. I read that I should buy a blood pressure monitor to help with knowing my blood pressure numbers at home. My first blood pressure monitor was giving me high systolic numbers but my diastolic numbers ever since was normal.

Getting frustrated and stressed out with worries about the high blood pressure, I finally saw a general practitioner who suggested that I start taking blood pressure medication. The first medication prescribed was Lisinopril. When I went back for 3 months check up, I told my doctor that I was experiencing bad night coughing. He then took me out of that and prescribed Benicar, but I had a bad sore throat and itching from taking it that I had to go back to my GP and he changed the BP prescription to Losartan. I stayed with Losartan for a while. This time I started with a Blood Pressure Log to keep track of my daily BP systolic and diastolic numbers and heart rates. And I bought a better and reliable BP monitor. My numbers were good and stayed in good range.

I make it a habit to take three months worth of BP log sheets each time I see my doctors. I have a white coat hypertension syndrome where my blood pressure systolic reading is higher at the doctor’s office. I used to wonder why, but I know now the reason. Everything is rush-rush in the doctors office. Taking blood pressure measurement should be done after 5 to 10 minutes of rest sitting down doing nothing.  Your upper left arm is at the same height as your heart, placing it on a table. The clinic assistant should not do anything or not talk to you or touch you to take your heart rate etc., while taking the measurement. These are not adhered at the doctors office. They don’t give you a chance to breathe if ever. You’re already stressed out being there and if they call your name right away while filling some paperwork for updates, your heart is already racing. Of course, in turn, your blood pressure reading undoubtedly has skyrocketed. This is what I tell them now after they take my measurement and my reading was high; and I show them my BP log sheets. I am right away vindicated. I don’t give them a chance to tell me to up my BP med dose just because.

Many people find that their blood pressure increases because of subconscious stress from confrontation with medical institutions and the staff working there. This is usually called “white coat hypertension”, that is, elevated blood pressure levels from just seeing the white lab coats doctors wear.
This is a common problem: a full 10-15% of people diagnosed with high blood pressure after measurements taken at a hospital or medical facility, later find that measurements taken in their own home or averaged over 24 hours are normal.

If you’re one of the people with “white coat hypertension”, you have approximately the same risk of heart disease as other people with normal blood pressure. People with “white coat hypertension” don’t need blood pressure-lowering medication – but they often get it unnecessarily! ***DietDoctor.com

lowerbloodpressurenaturally

This time around I started on my plant based diet, reducing simple sugar carbs and saturated fats, started with calorie counting and lost a significant amount of weight. My BMI went down to normal. I also started with intermittent fasting. Anyway with BP med intake it seemed like I finally achieved successful control of my blood pressure, or so I thought.

But then after a few months of taking Losartan daily, I started feeling backaches, cold sweats especially at night and the worse chills like I could hardly breathe at night and would wake me up in the middle of the night. Suffice to say, I had so many sleepless nights. I would have chest pains on top of it that my GP referred me to another cardiologist who is more reliable than the previous one I was referred to at the Emergency Hospital. This time I finally agreed to have a cardiogram test and a nuclear test. My nuclear test had a good result. I do not have any blockage and my heart condition is good and so did my cardiogram result.

But I was still being pestered with back pains and all the side effects that came with taking Losartan. I had a little argument at my next visit with my GP. He was getting annoyed that I was complaining about side effects. And asked me point blank why should he prescribe me another BP med when I seemed to complain about side effects all the time. I told him you’re my doctor, you’re supposed to help me. But looking back at it now, I guess he probably would want me to stop taking them period. Both of us frustrated, he prescribed Norvasc or Amlodipine. At this point, I was just about as stressed out with BP meds.

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I then researched on what veggies and fruits and whole grains and other plant based foods that can naturally lower my blood pressure. I’ve adjusted my daily prepared meal to be as close as the Mediterranean diet focusing on lots of veggies and fruits.

After taking the Amlodipine for three months, side effects followed.

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I had the worst lower and upper back pains. I could barely sit down for a few minutes because I would have chest pains and back pains. I started getting very tired and fatigue at the end of the day that I had to stop taking it because I can hardly get a good sleep. This time I did not call my GP. I felt good through all the summer last year after quitting Amlodipine. The back pains were going away. I was able to get goodnight sleep again. Without the BP med, I found out that with adding plant based foods and losing weight, my blood pressure numbers are not bad at all. My energy was optimal.

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But I decided to give Amlodipine another try early this year to make sure that I was just not imagining the side effects. Just three weeks into taking it everyday, my lower and upper back started to bother me again. I started getting dizzy and feeling faint like I would pass out. My legs were starting to swell and ache like I was having a blood clot on both legs. I started sneezing really bad everyday, I could barely function. I lost my energy. I was able to prepare my smoothies and eat plant based foods, but I was so fatigued toward the end of the day that I felt like I was so depressed and feeling run down. I told myself that this is not the way to live a full life! I was having a restless sleep. I’ve prayed so hard and asked God for discernment and wisdom on how I could deal with these trials I was going through with my health.  I was exhausted and tired and sneezing continuously most days that once and for all, I’ve got to stop taking the BP med.

 

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Lowering blood pressure helps prevent getting angina, heart attacks and strokes. BP medications can surely lower your BP, but with the side effects that come with taking these meds long term, a person will die of side effects, not of the high blood pressure. And would possibly die of heart attacks anyway. These drugs are awful! I’ve learned to be vigilant with all these drugs doctors prescribe to be used long term and daily. Check out the side effects! Most likely, you will experience those side effects. These conventional drugs will take over your life and lose it in the process. My chest pains were actually caused by these BP drugs!

After a week of quitting the BP med,  I felt better. I’ve been taking Gaba Plus for years, so I started taking them again. I stopped taking my supplements because of fear that they might badly interact with my BP med.  I started taking Fish Oil and Co Q-10 and Vitamin D and calcium again. In my research, I found out that taking Gaba Plus and Fish Oil will lower my blood pressure.

Yesterday, my blood pressure systolic was 127 and my diastolic was 64 and heart rate is 62. I’ve been getting good BP readings even without the conventional BP med. The chest pain is gone and yesterday, I returned to doing a moderate treadmill walk. When I’ve first embarked on changing my eating habits and lost a lot of weight and doing intermittent fasting, I was in the middle or period of taking the BP med. So whatever benefits and nutrients I was getting was helping me somehow,  but the side effects of the BP med were so overwhelming that daily dose of this medication was giving me a poor quality of life.

In a recent 6 month’s visit last week at my cardiologist office, I told the nurse practitioner that was assigned to me that I stopped taking the BP med. I showed her my BP log sheets and told her the side effects I experienced. She was concerned about the BP reading that was taken by the clinic assistant because my systolic reading was high. I told her what I’ve learned about the right ways to take BP measurement. I was surprised she didn’t know. She let me rested for about 5 to 15 minutes and took another blood pressure measurement. It was 135/70 with 64 heart rate.

Blood pressure readings varies each time in a day, it can be lower, in the middle, higher or extremely high depending on how our heart and brain react on things around us. I found out that it is normal. The medical concern really is if our systolic or diastolic number remain high, especially the systolic number and does not change even when we are at rest before doing the measurements.

One of the best websites about hypertension or high blood pressure I’ve read was DietDoctor.com ( https://www.dietdoctor.com/blood-pressure )

An ideal, healthy blood pressure is not over 120/80. This is what young, healthy and lean people have…

Values between 140/90 and 160/100 are considered as slightly elevated blood pressure.
Over 160/100 is said to be moderately elevated.
Over 180/110 is a severely elevated blood pressure.

If your blood pressure is severely elevated (over 160 systolic or over 100 in diastolic), medication is wise. If you have other risk factors for heart disease (like smoking, diabetes or obesity), medication may be recommended even for a slight elevation in blood pressure (over 140/90).

Up until recently there was no evidence that medication improves the health of otherwise healthy people with mildly elevated blood pressure (140-159 systolic and/or 90-99 diastolic). This meant it was unclear whether it was worth risking the side effects of the medication if all you have is a slight elevation.

After losing a lot of weight and eating plant based foods, my daily blood pressure readings are in the mid 120s and low and mid 130s at the most. The Fish Oil and Gaba plus have added extra help in lowering my blood pressure steadily without BP medication. Hopefully, I am at the time now that I have reached the level where my blood pressure is finally well controlled. I’ve thanked God and grateful to Him that He has given me understanding and wisdom in overcoming the maladies concerning high blood pressure. God once again opened my eyes!

Omega 3


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The Condition of our hearts

 

God, as I have learned, is BIG in the matter of our hearts. He is more concerned of how our hearts operate in things about how we see the world as He sees it.

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Proverbs 4:23

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Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is-his good, pleasing and perfect will. Romans 12:2

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He is concerned of how our hearts reacts to Him as Someone who matters to us the most, the beginning and the end, the giver of life and the taker of it.

 My son, give me your heart and let your eyes delight in my ways… Proverbs 23:26

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The Holy Bible is full of verses dealing with our hearts. He observes how we obey Him, how we worship Him, how we present Him to the world. He close-captioned and zero in on our hearts specifically. Our deeds are secondary to Him. If our hearts are focused on Him, everything in our life is in the proper place including our deeds.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Matthew 5:8Pureinheart

God has our best interest at heart all the time. He operates using His own heart in dealing with His creation. His heart speaks first before His mind. His mind is Holy for He is a holy God.  Everything about Him is holy.

for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” 1 Peter 1:16

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God knows that our ways are not His ways, so when we become children of God as followers and believers of Jesus Christ, He has given us the Holy Spirit of God to guide and teach us the ways of God. The Holy Spirit is straight living in our hearts as believers of Jesus Christ. The more closer we become in our relationship with God through His Son; and studying and focusing on His words to us, our hearts are transformed. Everything with God is about our hearts. Believers of Jesus not only have eternal life after death, they also have a Holy Spirit that is leading us to be joyful in all circumstances. We go through trials and struggles with confidence in our hearts that God is with us all the time, through the Holy Spirit He has given us. HolySpiritFunctions

When our hearts are

for Him, we make good decisions in life, when we are tuned in to His words, life is worth living and able to endure the things that will come our way whether good or bad, we know that God is holding our hearts to the path where He wants us to go. HolyinHim

 

 

 

 

 

For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love… Ephesians 1:4

HolySpirit

 


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In God’s Presence

 

“We find ourselves in spiritual battles and physical hardships, and the enemy doesn’t fight fair. Though we aren’t spared from our definition of harm, those who trust God and lean on Him are spared from His definition of harm. He is a God who protects His people. Outside of His Presence, we’re vulnerable to the worst kind of harm; but in His Presence, nothing can touch us. He is our place of safety.

God doesn’t call us to be reckless, but He does call us to be fearless. No refuge is more secure than He is.

In whatever decisions you face, take fear out of the equation. If you trust God and honor Him, He hides you in the shelter of His Presence. He allows the war, but guards you from defeat. He protects those who are loyal to Him.”

Source: The One Year Experiencing God’s Presence Devotional: 365 Daily Encounters to Bring You Closer to Him

I believe this to be true. In my life, I’ve seen God’s miracles so many times. As I rely on Him each and every day, from the time I wake up to the time I go to bed, His guidance I depend on. He is really near when your mind is focused on Him. He speaks through my heart that He holds and keeps it safe.

Last year, I desperately prayed to God through Jesus, His Son, to revive this nation again. That Christians would stand firm on their faith, to breathe on His believers again.

O Lord hear, O Lord forgive us.
We have lost the awe of You.
Have mercy, have mercy.
O Lord, cleanse
Our hearts which are divided.
Stir the faith that we once knew
We’re thirsty, we’re thirsty.
O Lord restore
The church that bears Your name.
O Spirit send
A revival to this nation.
Breathe on us again,
Breathe on us again.

For in God, I will always trust and hope on His almighty power. The enemy of our souls is desperate to defeat Him by dividing the world, evil against good, but as believers, we already know who won. In the middle of this battle is where God is in the center. He won’t let those who love and is faithful to His plan and purposes get defeated. He covers them with His protection, He gives them strength.

“Yet those who wait for the LORD Will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, They will run and not get tired, They will walk and not become weary.”  Isaiah 40:31

“Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil for You are with me” Psalm 23:4

“…Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might” – Ephesians 6:10

“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will lift you up” – James 4:10

“Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me” – Psalm 54:4


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Press toward the Goal

In March 2002, a discovery of who Jesus really is, has changed my life completely and has brought tremendous hope in me. It was an awakening to something higher than my earthly thoughts. My life before this wake up call was mundane. A busy life but tiresome and wearisome. Routinely repetitive and headed to a very sad, empty and hopeless existence. Job was okay, some glimpses of limited happiness. But in all, there’s dissatisfaction in everything, brooding over an unseen future. I felt like everything had come to a dead end. People at work started to annoy me. I started to lose patience. To survive, I buried myself to the task at hand at work, but I dragged each day. I saw things done unfairly, but I would just bite my tongue. A lot of backbiting, it was so stressful that I had to do soundbites or brief catchy comments to my trusted friends just to let out the frustrations.

My sense of anger had built up in me, but there was no way out. I felt like I would always get the short end of the stick. I felt I’m surrounded with naughty “children” in need of a smack.  The nastiness of the environment seemed to affect my private and personal life. I look forward for weekends and vacations hoping beyond hope that the ones concerned would get their act together. I started doubting that the sun in the east will shine. It was all a pipe dream. Haven’t we all wish a castle in the sky? I could not seem to escape and could not do anything rushed. All my life, I’ve had to play the hand I was dealt. I’ve learned to endure and used my own strength. But it was tiring.

One day as I looked out the window by my upstairs bathroom, I cried out to God, is this all there is in life? Is it always a rat race out there?! The September 11 tragedy made it more pronounced that there are people that always would cause havocs in people’s life. May it be at work, your personal life, and just about anywhere you go, most people hate people. I never knew as to why? What is wrong with the world?

One fateful Holy Week in March, 2002 was destined to give me answers I’ve never thought of, and that would open my eyes beyond what I could not comprehend in the natural life I was part of.  It changed my outlook and attitude of sinfulness, selfishness, covetousness and self absorbed, self-centered ways.HeSavedMe2It started on this one particular and significant day during this Holy Week, and a vacation week for me, when my hubby in passing said something about Jesus Christ that got my nerve rattled. I was perturbed and it brought me to search the internet about Jesus Christ that I had never done before, just because I did not have time for it. I was very far away from religion and was just so self-absorbed with all that was happening around me and was only focused on things that affected me.

On line, I was so surprised of what I found out and discovered. I encountered for the very first time verses in the Holy Bible and I could understand it and the Word is like a sword that went through my heart and opened it wide. Jesus was not on the cross, like I always would see in the church, that He is forever on the cross! He was teaching and walking with His followers. He was actually talking and sharing His first hand knowledge about God. He resurrected from death and lives! My heart was touched and I started crying. Right there and then, I felt like He came to the computer room and held me and said: “I have not abandoned you!”JesusChangedmyLife3I felt so overwhelmed and my whole body was trembling. The experience had given me a lot to think about. But I did not know where to start. I just spent the whole vacation week searching for Jesus that led to several links that explained that God, because of His love for us, sent His Son to this world to teach us and reveal to us who God really is. And God sent Jesus to give us salvation and an eternal life spent in heaven by dying on the cross for us. Before Jesus was born, God offered forgiveness of sins through sacrificial system only and through a rabbi and done in the Holy Temple only. No one can come to the Holy God, but only through His appointed prophets. These made people alienated, isolated or estranged from God and did not know Him at all and did not have any relationship with Him. Not because God did not want to, because He does, He always does. It’s our sins that separated us from Him. God so loved us that He planned for the longest time to give us a Savior that will ultimately save us from our sins and from ourselves and give us hope and a surety, that for those that believe and accept His Son Jesus as our Lord and Savior, repent and turn away from sins, will receive His forgiveness and salvation and an eternal life in Heaven with God and Jesus. This is God’s offer of mercy and Grace to mankind. Jesus alone, fulfilled God’s requirements in the olden times of forgiving sins, before Jesus came to the world. Jesus is the Light that led us to know who God really is. He is the Way to an eternal life in heaven and the Truth to God’s Plan of salvation, hope, peace and joy that only God can offer through Jesus Christ.SeparationFromGodNot only did Jesus’s death and resurrection reconcile us with God, but He has given us the right to be called children of God and an intimate relationship with Jesus and God here on earth as well. Jesus’s followers are no longer condemned. JesusChangedmyLife2They are no longer isolated, alienated and estranged from God. That is God’s Good News and amazing Grace He is offering to us all. What a great and faithful God we have!

AsinnersavedbyGrace

 


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The Truth of who God really is…

The Bible is a book about people who have a problem with God. They have a hard time seeing eye to eye with a God who says, “‘My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,’ says the LORD. ‘For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts'” (Isaiah 55:8-9)

The Bible is also about a God who has a problem with people. The whole Bible is about a God who will not always protect those who refuse to trust Him. When God barred Adam and Eve from their garden home, when He sent a flood to destroy all but Noah and his family, when He allowed the Assyrians to defeat the Northern Tribes and the Babylonians to defeat Judah, God made it clear that there is a limit to His patience.

God’s promises are not given to all, but to everyone who is willing to seek and trust Him. Isaiah reminds us that God is willing to be found by those who are willing to seek Him on His terms. Just before saying, “My thoughts are not your thoughts;” Isaiah quoted God as saying, “Seek the LORD while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the LORD, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon” (Isaiah 55:6-7).

The whole Bible makes it clear that God promises to be found only by those who are willing to surrender to Him. This important condition of surrender is what Jesus taught when He said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (Matthew 5:8). He said this immediately after saying, “Blessed are the poor in spirit… Blessed are those who mourn… Blessed are the meek… Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness… Blessed are the merciful” (verses 3-7).

Each of these conditions reflects the need for a surrendered heart as a condition to receive the blessing of God.

God cannot be found by just anyone. Because He is Spirit, He is seen only by those to whom He chooses to reveal Himself. This is also true of the Bible. While the Scriptures have been given to lead us to God, they remain a closed book to those who are trying to find God on their own terms. God will be found in the pages of His book by those who desire to obey Him or, He will not be found at all.

Jesus said of God and of Himself, “If anyone wills to do His will, he shall know concerning the doctrine, whether it is from God or whether I speak on My own authority” (John 7:17).

Salvation itself is a gift. Forgiveness and eternal life come to us only by grace and through faith in Christ (Ephesians 2:8-9). But seeing God in the Bible requires a willingness to do the will of God. Only in submission can we see the Father and His Son on every page of Scripture.

from: Seeing God in the Bible/Our Daily Bread

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