Monday, August 31, 2009

Sprouts!

I'm in this five-and-a-half day transition period right now. I got back from Hippocrates on Friday, and I'm leaving for Rhode Island to pick up my stuff from my grandparents' house on Thursday night.

There are few really important things to consume daily on the Hippocrates diet. They are wheatgrass juice, sprouts (sunflower, especially), lots of supplements, green drinks, and garlic. Alright, I'm kidding about the garlic, but that stuff seriously cures everything.

So, I have been trying to figure out how to make the diet work here. I've been getting roughly $3 double shots of wheatgrass at Jamba Juice every day, which isn't that big of a deal for the next few days, so I'm set there.

The sprouts are entirely different, though. Thankfully, the Whole Foods that is five doors down from my house sells sunflower (the best sprout to consume, since it contains all of the essential amino acids) and snow pea sprouts (a close second to the sunflower). However, the sprouts cost $4 for a 2 ounce bag. Therefore, they come out to $32 a pound. At minimum, I've been consuming 8 ounces a day; at maximum, I'm closer to 16 ounces. I decided not to put the sprouts in my juice, resulting in the minimum number for two reasons. One: the juicer that I'm using temporarily is pretty terrible, and barely juices the sprouts. Therefore, the sprouts are too expensive to only get a bit of juice from them, and I drink straight up celery and cucumber juice instead twice a day.

I thought calling the place where the Whole Foods near me gets the sprouts was a great idea, and I found out they were in downtown Chicago. I talked to my dad about getting them, as it would be very much a cost-saving venture, but as soon as I told him exactly where the place was located he said, "Got your flak jacket? Ammunition?" So, therefore, I doubt I'll be getting sprouts much cheaper for the next five days. If I come home for a more extended period of time, I'll probably try to look into something more sustainable or maybe risk my life in the inner city to get my nutrition.

Fresh from Hippocrates

I returned the Hippocrates Health Institute in West Palm Beach, FL two days ago. I spent three weeks learning about raw food preparation, tai chi, meditation, sprouting, growing wheatgrass, making a mean green drink, every aspect of colon health, how garlic cures everything, and much, much more.

The reason I decided to embark on this journey was because roughly two months ago, I was diagnosed with moderate to severe (depending on which conversation with my rheumatologist to which you would like to refer) rheumatoid arthritis. I've had the condition since I was sixteen, but this summer it became unbearable. Therefore, I confirmed my mother's fears, by allowing an absurd number of tubes of blood be drawn from my arm. A week later, I returned to my rheumatologist as she went over numbers on a paper. My rheumatoid factor was supposed to be under 10 IU/mL. It was 120 something. My anti-CCP autoantibody was similarly absurdly high. I had rheumatoid arthritis. My mom cried. The doctor and I were puzzled. I had no genetic link. She was sure of one thing: "Nothing caused this. You didn't do anything wrong." My doctor was quick to hand me pamphlets of drugs and detail the options I had - from injections to oral medications, antibiotics to forms of mild radiation. I was to choose one to take for the rest of my life. Predisone should be taken as soon as possible to alleviate swelling.

Long story short, I decided to seek out a cure for my "incurable" disease. A one-week visit to Hippocrates was in order, and after I spent a few days there, the stay was soon extended to the full three-week "Life Change" program.

The night before my trip the intensity of what I was about to do dawned on me. I desperately searched for information on raw veganism online, only finding disjointed sources. Even more frustrating, I tried to find some sort of information on being a raw vegan in college, or at least the reassurance that somebody was doing it. Nothing.

Now, I'm at home, trying to figure out where to buy sprouts and if the conventional (non-organic) baby carrot I ate is going to kill me. In four days, I'll be in Rhode Island, picking up my stuff, and in six days, I'll be driving back to Tufts University to start my sophomore year, leading a radically different lifestyle than that of freshman year. This blog will detail my journey.