If you are contemplating how to go about the deep heal from chronic illness or some mystery ailment (or collection or ailments) that have been with you for years, you could do no better than to deep dive into everything offered by the Medical Medium, Anthony William. I know I’ve talked about him before and made reference to his healing protocol several times but, let’s be honest, I had never before completely immersed myself in his advice to the exclusion of all other ways of managing my recovery. When someone contacted me to ask how his protocol was going for me, I realised I was incorporating many of the supplements or foods he recommends yet not in a concerted, coordinated way; having often forgotten where I had come across that advice. After all, I read his first book Medical Medium shortly after it was published, which was a couple of years ago now, and his new Thyroid Healing book had been gathering dust on my shelf since it came out last November. Yes, I’ve been preoccupied and busy but I also thought I had it covered when I didn’t; I had only skimmed off the top!
I should add, I had already added in – actually – quite a few of the teas, herbs, supplements and foods from the first book and was pretty sure they had done something for me. After all, my neuralgia settled down from its excruciating level, previously, to a pretty low hum last year, which was when I really got this going, especially the Hawaiian spirulina, the blueberries and the lemon balm tea. But I wasn’t what you could say following it to the letter or every day…not even nearly…and now the new book was on my shelf largely unopened. Even though my thyroid was flagged up as an issue last summer and had been on my mind as a problem to be solved, the book remained there waiting for me to act. A couple of things got me to pick up that book, finally. One was the message from one of my readers asking “how is it going?” which got me thinking about it. The other was when someone who comes to help me every couple of weeks mentioned she had read the book on my advice and her thyroid symptoms were so much better (at once both thrilling to hear and embarrassing since I hadn’t even started on mine). The third was that I got the flu; and I mean proper, knock you right over flu.
To be honest, I don’t think I had had a flu-like this ever before. It took a week and a half building up steam before completely floored me, forced me to stay in bed or lie on a sofa for most of the following week, then left me weak and bearly functioning for another week after that. Now at the month anniversary since it first started showing signs, I’m still pretty compromised in my energy levels when it comes to leaving the house but getting back to some sort of normality and work-flow.
The nearest thing that I could remember to that flu was the one I got (ironically) just after having a flu jab the year I started the stressful corporate job following my divorce. Though it knocked me over for a week, I remember forcing myself back to work after those few days off “because I had to” and feeling at a very low-ebb all over the Christmas period that came on its tail. I can clearly recall the moment I realised, six months later sat at my desk, feeling just awful yet in a non-specific way, that I had never really felt like that flu had gone away. Another four months later, as another winter got going, I was still feeling like that but so much worse that I was starting to take time off for mystery bouts of exhaustion and pain. By the following year, I had full-blown fibromyalgia and was forced to give up work. That was twelve years ago.
This time, the week or so of serious depletion reminded so strongly me of those “early days” of a decade of chronic illness that it felt like a haunting since I had, largely, forgotten how bad and disorienting it once was to feel so generally, all-consumingly, unwell. It took me through the helplessness, the fears, the dark moods, the pitiful exhaustion, the need to surrender yet the fear of letting go for fear of flying off some sort of precipice into ever worsening symptoms and vulnerability. It brought back so much of the pain, in layers, culminating…at day five or so…in a return of the intense shingles neuralgia that I lived with for about a year between 2015-16 but which I had largely brought under control over the last year or so. Suddenly, I couldn’t bear to have wi-fi anywhere near me, or even a keyboard some of the time, as everything electrical or with a frequency signal triggered some degree of super-sensitivity or pain. That old-familiar shrill sound started to tone in my head, feeling like a drill boring through my skull, the high-pitched and relentless dog-whistle from hell, triggering a cascade of nerve pains in my teeth and jaw, down the spine and into all my limbs. In other words, I was weak, hurting, housebound…and bored with nothing to distract me from the pain.
I was in the depths of all that when the Medical Medium’s Thyroid Healing book caught my eye on my bookshelf; perhaps it was time to read it…so, in the bursts that I could manage, I did. Then I went back to re-read his first book, this time cover-to-cover instead of cherry picking what I thought were the relevant bits (it all turned out to be relevant), then his Life-Changing Foods book. Nothing had ever made more sense to me, suddenly, than what he had to tell me about what the chronic, so-called unsolvable, mystery illnesses that had plagued my life really were and how they slotted together. Finally, the whole story of my life, of my parents’ and even grandparents’ lives and health, fell perfectly into place as though I was the model case-scenario he was describing (I always suspected there was a meaningful link…but I now realise it was viral, not genetic!) so I could see where I had been and, potentially, where I was going. In other words, the second shoe finally dropped to the floor. All…not just part…of this health experience, from the very womb, had been about a virus and the answer lay in keeping that virus in check, using food; and now I knew which ones to use, I had it all in my own hands.
Since then, I’ve been following his healing protocol…and I mean really following it this time, not just dipping in here or there whilst congratulating myself because I ate a sweet potato today. I see how I had got close to listening before; things like lemon balm tea have become a part of my life (and a profoundly helpful one too) but as recreational drinks or the occassional food choice, not daily medicine. I needed to remind myself something that I often preach to others; all food is medicine (or not) and our best health lies in the hands of what we choose to consume in every moment; not as a one-off, a retreat, a good-behaviour effort between lapses or some sort of fad until it wears off…but as a way of life. And those old habits we slip back into so easily; they’re not comfort or nostalgia or normalising devices that keep us feeling part of the crowd, they are as nefarious as any attacker on our doorstep planning to rob us of our lives because that’s what they do and, while I don’t eat anything like the mainstream diet of sugar, gluten and alcohol, I had let some of the things I knew deep down, for instance about eggs feeding a virus, to slide under the carpet out winter time self-pity and a longing for comfort food. One thing I noticed most profoundly when I was in the thick of the flu, tackling (in other words) more than one viral load at a time; those cravings that came in the strongest and loudest were really that virus putting in its take-away order, dialing up its favourite foods from the restaurant. On the other side of that (having not touched an egg since I realised that, deep down but clearly, my instincts said I should avoid them; how interesting that this flu hit me 6 weeks after I reintroduced eggs after eight months without them), I am reminded that you can’t do this kind of healing “a bit” if you really want to claim your life back; it needs to be all the way and, quite literally, for life.
The other thing that reading these books did for me was give me back my self-confidence at the end of a year when, out of desperation, I turned to more outside help and tests to try and navigate my way through the territory than at any time in my journey, only resulting in a loss of confidence and self-belief. Test results and consultations with various so-called experts only made me feel more “broken” and unsure of my route forwards without providing any obvious remedies or clarity (see my post about how helpful, or not, testing can be here). So the other thing that interested me as I read these books was how they are the polar opposite to the advice and belief systems of a well-respected nutritional specialist that I went to see, at great expense, just before Christmas. This guy has made a name for himself taking on all sorts of conundrum health challenges that no one else has been able to cure and tackles them, primarily, by arranging for a whole gamut of tests to be run. Literally surrounded by piles of books on the topic of various so-called autoimmune diseases, he talked at length about how I clearly had “multiple overlapping autoimmunities” and was in a very poor way, with my body clearly not taking in any benefit from the nutition I was giving it. He speculated that I would probably need to give up all grains, not just the gluten I’ve already eliminated, and in fact pretty much everything but plain meat and veg (I could already put a line through half of that, being borderline vegan); in fact his wife is now on such a plain meat and veg diet at his advice and her eating arrangements sounds like misery. The cost of the tests he wanted to run was astronomical and that was just a starter, before any related consultations to discuss an action plan. When I queried this “mud throwing” exercise with the tests…literally, throwing loads of them at a wall, hoping something would stick, he must have taken umbrage at my question since he never bothered to reply to me ever again, so that was that. The fact this came as a relief to me was particularly telling, though I had spent a small fortune on his initial consultation. I never felt truly comfortable with his approach, though he came recommended by someone I respect. He particularly relies on DNA tests, the latest “be-all-and-end-all” fad of diagnosis, to navigate the mystery illness territory. Well, the Medical Medium discusses in his book the wide-spread misnomer that DNA holds all the answers and considers it a detour that will waste a lot of people’s time and efforts when they could be getting on with the far-more accessible business of healing. Oh and, by the way, the MM doesn’t entertain the concept of autoimmunity which, basically, means “the body attacking itself”…and nor do I; in fact, I’ve alway found myself bristling at the word when people have tried to apply it to me, knowing deep down that this was bunkum!
So, please excuse the food pun, the proof as ever is in the pudding and I initially expected to wait a little longer before sharing the topic of this post. However, having been on a very concerted Medical Medium eating plan for over a week now, I found I wanted to share at least this much; I’m feeling different…in a way that is fairly hard to pinpoint but there it is, its there. I’m also looking different; which is something years of inadvertent practice have taught me to be able to do, spotting subtle yet significant changes in my face shape, my eyes, the way my appearance fleshes-out in the way that makes people seem more youthful and healthy (or not…) and the pallor of my skin, even the bounce of my hair. As ever, I wasn’t even looking-out for this thing and it took my surprise when I noticed it and yet, every evening, I tend to go to the bathroom at about the same time in the same lighting and these last few evenings, as I lift my head up from washing my hands, the change in my face in the mirror seems to startle me anew and just a little more each time until, last night, I even announced outloud to my husband “I’ve changed” as I walked back into the room. Its not just a case of looking better after the flu, which made me appear more grey and gaunt than I ever wanted to see myself (it reminded me far too much of my mother in her illness), but that I look different to how I have for a very long time. I recently had reason to go through all the old family photos and it really shocked me to see the change in my appearance over all the years of illness…but I sense some sort of reversal starting to take place as I am starting to see the “me” of over a decade ago with a sort of bloom in my appearance as the layers unpeel, like a reveal from beneath layers of bandage. Subtle though it is, I do think its there; and not a bad result just weeks before my fiftieth birthday!
So, I’m following the recipes, drinking (more concertedly than ever) the herbal teas, taking pretty much all the recommended supplements for my conditions but the big one, I know, is the celery juice. The pivot-point of his healing advice, celery juice is a must according to Anthony William…and best drunk on an empty stomach at the start of the day. When I first placed that bunch and a half of celery on the chopping board and braced myself, it wasn’t with a small amount of reluctance, even revulsion, at the thought of its green and salty taste so early in the day. Investing in a new compact juicer for my counter-top by day two really helped. Pretty much immediately after that first-day shock, I realised I genuinely loved this simple, clean, mineral-packed green liquid; in fact, I could happily drink way more than the recommended minimum 6oz (and probably will once I can work out how to get the appropriate supplies of organic celery fresh every day). To me, it tastes like the elixir of life, a life-rejuvenating tonic no less, and my body seems to lap it up. Its particular brand of “savoury” is a flavour I realise my pallette has been craving for the longest time yet struggling to find (I’d sought it from apple cider vinegar, Himalayan salt, coconut water…but never quite got there). My stomach and bowels (please excuse the reference) feel so, well, healthy and comfortable suddenly. I’ve found myself wondering if the hotel we stay at in the summer would be prepared to make it for me…as I already can’t imagine my morning without it.
I could go through the full protocol that I’m following…but I won’t as I recommend, with all my heart, the books, the blogs, the radio shows, in fact all the materials Anthony William puts out, not that you take it second-hand from me or anyone else. This is a “do it yourself” protocol and that’s one of the things I most love about it; it’s about you taking command of your own health and realising you have all the things you need to bring it about, no intermediary required. Its about self-love and, yes, self-responsibility; these are both things you need to evolve in yourself, not delegate to others in order to claim your health and your life back. And it’s primarily about saying “yes” to food, not (as I did last year) having to eliminate one food after another until there’s almost nothing left; there are so many food options and many things that are quite delicious that you have probably never tried. I’ve made it into almost a game to include as many of the recommended ingredients in one day as I can, in as many interesting ways as possible. I feel empowered, knowing how I am now suporting my thyroid, liver, adrenal glands and everything else…in fact, for the first time since receiving my thyroid test results last year, I realise I have completely stopped fearing my thyroid and whatever it is, or isn’t, doing (I’ve stopped fearing any part of my body as though it is going “wrong”). The meals I’ve been preparing this last week have been getting the “wow” response at home as the ingredients are just lovely, flavourful, natural, cooked to perfection and (if you want them) there are plenty of sweet treats, made the non-toxic, body-supporting way. Like I said, all food is medicine…when we choose what supports the body rather than working against it, as so many commonplace food habits do. The more I eat this way, the more I find I want to eat this way and it becomes so effortless, obvious, non-negotiable and precious to me. I’m sure there will be be further updates from me along the way but this is where I am at and it feels pretty good to be noticing the differences, day-on-day. It’s that traction towards healing that so many of us have longed for and the Medical Medium offers so many insights about how to gain such momentum (and, by the way, none of this information is coming from any other source; he is way ahead of his time), which really is the helpful push-start so many of us had been longing for. My short advice is – just read the books.
The Medical Medium website
Medical Medium on Facebook for daily inspiration
Hay House radio for the Medical Medium’s weekly show
This blog, its content and any material linked to it are presented for informational purposes only. They are not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or prescribing. The material and opinions shared are anecdotal and should not be considered to be medical advice or diagnosis. Please consult with a licensed healthcare professional before altering or discontinuing any medications, treatment, diet or supplementation program, or if you have or suspect you might have a health condition that requires medical attention.