Lifestyle and Nutritional Changes May Help You Live with Sarcoidosis
So … this has been a very “eventful” weekend!
Early Sunday morning, I awoke because I was uncomfortable. I couldn’t sleep and was finding it hard to find a position I could rest in. I went downstairs, sat on my couch, and played golf on my tablet, thinking that would relax me enough to go back to bed. It didn’t, but I decided to return anyway. Back in bed, I realized that my wife couldn’t get comfortable, either, so we both tossed and turned, trying to get some rest.
Finally, my wife got up and started walking around the room. I asked if she was all right, and she said she felt a tingling sensation in her left arm and fingers and left leg. She also felt some discomfort in her chest and back that felt like a gas bubble that wasn’t settling. She continued to pace the floor and she drank warm seltzer water, but no matter what she tried, she couldn’t get comfortable and she became concerned.
Get up … let’s go!
I suggested that we make a trip to the emergency room to get her checked out. I’m glad to know that my wife trusts my judgment when it comes to health-related issues. We married long before I was diagnosed with sarcoidosis. She was with me during my hospital stays and was my point of contact for dealing with the doctors while I was hospitalized. Like my pulmonologist, she trusts my health concerns. Good, bad, or questionable, if I have concerns, they’ll be addressed.
We arrived at the hospital and anxiety immediately overwhelmed me, because I was at this particular ER when I experienced my first spontaneous pneumothorax. I was like a deer in the headlights!
Err on the side of caution
The ER nurses and doctors came to check on my wife. I think I was more emotionally scattered than she was while they were gauging what her problem might be. A technician took my wife to have a chest X-ray and a CAT scan on her heart and lungs. While she was gone, I sat in the room remembering the times I’d been there. I was feeling really uncomfortable and I could tell that my breathing was becoming labored, but I had to keep it together so my wife wouldn’t be worried about me upon her return.
I started taking deep breaths and trying to relax, and thought about the progress I’ve made over the years of living with pulmonary sarcoidosis. I started feeling better … but then I began to worry about my wife! She returned after about 30 minutes and said she was feeling a little better. Not long thereafter, the doctor came in and told us that she was going off shift. The new attending doctor had been briefed on my wife’s situation, and both tests had revealed that everything was OK. It might have been a passing episode, but the neurologist would be seeing her shortly.
Diet and nutrition are key
While we were alone, we talked about how we could further improve our health. We’re not getting any younger, although we look great compared to a lot of people we know who are our age — even with me having sarcoidosis. I told her about the progress I’ve been making with my holistic nutrition and master herbalist courses and suggested small changes we can integrate into our lifestyle. She agreed.
The neurologist finally came to examine my wife. He ruled out giving her an MRI and opted for some verbal tests, which she passed. He also mentioned her test results and commended her for being very fit and healthy. Finally, after seven hours in the ER, she was discharged.
When we returned home, our children were up, none the wiser that we had been at the hospital all this time. We decided not to tell them so they wouldn’t get excited. We planned our Sunday dinner and headed to the market to pick up a few things.
Diet and nutrition strongly contribute to overall health and might lower dependence on medications. There’s no guarantee that everyone will experience the same results, but I believe that our diet, nutritional choices, and herbal supplements make a world of difference with my health. My wife and I have been eating a healthful diet and using herbal supplements for years, which I think is why my sarcoidosis hasn’t sent me to the doctor’s office more frequently and why I’m not on any medications.
I would encourage everyone, especially those in the sarcoidosis community, to consider making some easy lifestyle changes, under medical supervision, that can help them live with this condition. It doesn’t take a lot of effort, but it does take discipline, so start off slowly. I think it will make a huge difference!
Note: Sarcoidosis News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Sarcoidosis News or its parent company, BioNews Services, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to sarcoidosis.