We do for others because we don't know how to do for ourselves. We do for others because we feel it is the only way to make up for the damage we feel our craziness is doing to society. We do for others because it makes us feel good when nothing else in the whole world does, not even pills. We stay quiet and sit in the corner because others seem so much more needy. We require so little, you and I. A fact which does not sit well with others who would label us as too much to handle. When in truth, all those such as us really need is a bit of understanding, a bit of reciprocation, maybe a touch on the cheek once in a while and a sly wink. The rest of the world is needy. I'd rather be crazy. ~~Aimee

Thursday, 31 March 2011

Body, Mind, & Spirit

I read today about a man who "cured" his bipolar by eating a diet of seafood for four months. He claimed to have had bipolar for over 20 years, but that after eating this "diet" for four months he was "cured" so much so that he was able to discontinue all meds. If you believe that, I have a bridge for sale too. You can place your bids starting the second Tuesday of next week. I have intentionally not included the link because I do not want to drive traffic to the site or make someone think I endorce that when I absolutely do not.

I do believe that your diet can affect your bipolar, but there is no way diet can "cure" bipolar. There is no "cure". There is only management.

I use to be a junkfood aholic. I was always on the go. Moving. Constantly. No time to stop. No time to cook. No time to shop for food that takes longer than 2 mins in the microwave. I had too much to do, too many places to go. I did not have time to wait for water to boil to even make spaghetti.  I ate out. A LOT. I drank soda. A LOT. Almost all of my food was prepackaged, processed, fast food, greasy, fried and covered with cheese. To say I did not eat healthy is an understatement.

For the last three years, I eat fresh veggies. Cooked properly. With real food. Not Mickey D's. No whoppers with cheese. But real food. I don't drink sodas. Maybe once a month I MIGHT have a glass or two, but that is it. I don't eat junk. No more lil debbie snack cakes, no cream filled donuts, no twinkies. I use to  eat a bag of potato chips/crisps in one day. Now I might eat one bag every three months. I eat lots of fresh fruits also. Drink tons of water a day. I do yoga. Daily.

When I don't do these things, I notice a huge difference in my body and mind. If for some reason I eat too much sugary sweets, I start to feel "tired", sluggish, fatigued. Then my mind also becomes "tired, sluggish, and fatigued". I don't physically feel like getting out of bed which makes my mind not want to get out of bed. Which leads me to sleeping all day. Which leads to depression. Which leads to cutting.

I do not for one second think that diet can cure or treat bipolar, but any parent who gives their kid a candy bar instead of an apple an hour before bedtime knows how difficult it will be to get lil jimmy to sleep.

Sodas, sweets, junk food, and fast food are all loaded with sugar, caffeine and a bunch of other unhealthy things. They make you feel jittery, hyper, on edge. I already feel "jittery, hyper, and on edge". I don't need anything to make me feel more so than I already do. I fully believe that mental ailments can have physical symptoms and your overall diet can effect your state of mind.

That doesn't mean to go buy veggies and get rid of your meds, but I know for myself at least, that my diet has a direct effect on my mental state. My mental state has a direct effect on my diet. If for 2 or 3 days, I don't do yoga, then suddenly I realize I haven't done yoga. I then can look to see WHY I haven't done it. Is it because I had a cold or PMS? Or is it because I am starting to feel depressed and not taking care of myself? How is my diet? Am I eating healthy or just eating junk?

By looking at how I am caring for myself overall, I can catch myself before I go too far. For myself at least, this is the best way I have of remaining stable. When people start to get depressed, the first thing that they usually do is stop taking care of their diet and physical appearances. By noticing these small changes, I can usually catch myself and bring myself out of whatever deep end I am about to go off. Jigger also notices these things. If I start eating things I don't normally eat or not exercising, he will ask if I am ok because he now understands this is  a sign. Treating bipolar isn't just about meds or therapy. It isn't pop a pill and be all better again.

If you want to live a productive life while having a PD, then you have to treat MIND, BODY, & SPIRIT. At least I know I have to.


Sapphire Dragonflies said...

If this had a "like" button like facebook...I'd click it. :)

Maasiyat said...

Did you feel that? That was me blowing sugar.

Lance said...

anxiety doesn't seem to work that way. My diet affects my engery level and stomach issues but not my crazy.

Medication, a great support system, and hard mental work help my anxiety.

Very good post

Aimee said...

My biggest problem is eating period. Right now, it's pretty bad. I've subsisted on a couple of bananas and a FORCED bowl of cereal for almost a week. I'm starting to feel it. My workouts are slowing down. I have no appetite. I taste no food. But I know I have to get calories from somewhere, so I'm gonna have to have a come to jesus with my body at some point. I do yoga every day, too. Doing yoga naked is currently on my bucket list.

Maasiyat said...

No doubt that diet won't effect every one the same way, but I notice for myself that when I have the excess caffeine and sugar that I am more anxious and nervous. I feel jittery and on edge which my brain interprets as "danger" only it doesn't know from where or what. It's like the tiny crack in the dam that weakens it.

Aimee,if we were closer I would sit on you and make you eat. Doing yoga naked is the bomb. It's the only time I truly feel totally relaxed and can just drift off to sleep.

Maasiyat said...

Just to add that my diet is mostly a way for me to judge when I am "getting out of control". Especially since I am not getting any outside help from doc or meds. When my diet and exercise start slipping I know I need to start being super vigilant. It's also a way for Jigger to know when I am not ok as well. This is also one reason I monitor my diet so strictly.

hed said...

Bipolar + binge eater =bad news...

I'm reading this and am instantly envious that you are disciplined enough to cut out the bad foods-AND do yoga! Good for you x infinity! Is there anything that helped you make it a habit?

Whenever I have a low, there is literally NOTHING that stands in my way of self-destruction. Of course I have also been un-medicated for the last six months, so that affects it as well.


Maasiyat said...

Not so much disciplined as it is circumstances no longer allowing me to be a binge eater. If my circumstances were different, then I am not quite sure how "disciplined" I would remain. It is definitely a constant struggle. I think about food 24/7. I am also unmedicated. For the last ever so that doesn't help much.

The yoga that I do is not the bend into a pretzel type. It is the only time I truly feel "calm" especially if my mind is racing.

It's still definitely a struggle.


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