A Day In The A Blue Mountains.

Thanks for visiting my blog. I welcome you to take your time and browse , visiting my bush garden and discovering the wonders of my city within a national park; Blue Mountains National Park. Via my blog you will travel with me through the successes, trials and tribulations of gardening on a bush block. I share with you my patchwork & quilting, knitting, paper crafts, cooking and life in general.

Living With CFS & Sjogren's Syndrome.

I was diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) in the early eighties, with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) in the late nineties and with Sjogren's Syndrome in the mid noughts.

Around 2001 after many years of struggling with ill health and extreme fatigue and being told that 'there's nothing we can do for you' I decided to grab the bull by the horns and took the following steps:
  1. I consulted with a Naturopath who used the following diagnostic tools:
    Iridology, Hair Mineral Analysis, Blood Group, Blood Tests (which were organised through the family General Practitioner)and Medical History/Symptoms. She recommended and I followed the following treatments.
  2. Reiki. (I am now initiated into Reiki and do self-healing).
  3. Intensive Counselling sessions. (This was provided by a General Practitioner who also advised me on medications/preparations prescribed by the naturopath).
  4. Amino acid supplementation, including protein powder. (Julia Ross: The Diet Cure is a great reference). N.B. Amino acid therapy is not for everyone.
  5. Mega doses of various vitamins.
  6. B12 injections. (I was B12 anaemic). Administered by the family General Practitioner.
  7. Chromium (for sugar cravings).
  8. St John's Wort (for anxiety and chronic muscular pain).
  9. Herbal preparations to support the immune system and the adrenal glands.
  10. Using foods as medicine.
  11. Blood Group Diet. (Dr Peter J. D'Adamo: Eat Right For Your Type & Cook Right For Your Type.)
  12. Detox: 
     i. No foods rich in copper (e.g. chocolate, peas, liver, avocado, oysters and cashews) to remove high levels of copper in my body, for two months. (Diagnosed through Hair Mineral Analysis Test).

            ii. No fats or sugars for 2 months to cleanse the system.
  13. Walks in the sun wearing no eye protection for 20 minutes 2/3 times a week.
  14. On extreme fatigue days: sleeping outdoors (and undercover) during the day when weather permitted (as opposed to sleeping in my bed or on the lounge).
  15. Eating organic wherever possible and affordable.
  16. Eating fresh wherever possible. Reduced use of packaged/frozen/tinned foods.
  17. Choosing preservative/additive free foods (e.g. some marinated meats from the butcher and deli meats have preservative and other additives).
  18. No chemical cleaners in the household...I make most of the cleaning products I use today.
  19. Using organic and/or natural cosmetics and personal hygiene products including toothpaste.
  20. Aromatherapy. (The Reiki Master was also an aromatherapist).
  21. I have tried acupuncture with limited results.
  22. Chinese herbs (in capsule form) have been beneficial for IBS but I think the blood group diet was the most beneficial for treating my IBS symptoms. I cannot stomach Chinese herbs that need to be cooked on the stove.
  23. I have found Bowen therapy (which I sought for a back problem) to help me in ways I never thought possible. This therapy has helped with sinusitis, back pain, muscular pain and energy levels. (I can now walk three or four kilometres a day without feeling weary or fatigued for the rest of the day).

As you can imagine, this means a whole new lifestyle.
Supplements and consultations were expensive. Looking back I think they were well worth the sacrifices made to pay for them.

Today I have on hand three 'first aid' items:
Endura (for low energy days and hot humid weather days).
St John's Wort (for muscular pain and anxiety.)
Fusion Health Allergy Tablets (for seasonal sinusitis).
and use these as necessary.

Essential oils are a permanent way of life now and I use as required and I have a 'library' of good reference books on the subject. EO are an important ingredient in my cleaning products.

I drink herbal teas, organic where possible, and filtered water.

I use fresh herbs in cooking to replace 'stock cubes' and to add flavour and nutrition to meals.
I never use table salt but use Celtic Sea Salt instead. It is rich in trace elements and minerals. This is also a replacement for 'stock cubes'.

I avoid all fats/oils except organic extra virgin olive oil and sometimes indulge in whole butter. Coconut oil is good too.
I take flax seed oil when my skin becomes dry and flaky or when the hair follicles on the back of my upper arms become lumpy. I have found that flax seed oil helps my depression and reduces skin pigmentation.

I avoid at all costs Potato, Tomato, Capsicum & Eggplant as these cause inflammation in the body.
I avoid as much as possible wheat products. (I am sensitive to wheat).
I include organic meat such as lamb and sometimes kangaroo only to maintain my B12 levels (I have a malabsorption condition which means I do not absorb nutrients properly...this too was addressed by my naturopath with herbal preparations).
I continue to use food as medicine.
Buy most of my fresh organic food direct from the grower by going to growers' markets two or three times a month.  This includes eggs, meat and fruit and vegetables.

I do not mention actual product names prescribed by my naturopath as most where Practitioner only products and if not purchased directly from the practitioner could only be purchased over the counter (in Australia) by registering your healthcare practitioner's name with the retail outlet.

This link helps find practitioners in areas of Australia and New Zealand.

I am not a qualified health care professional, and in narrating the above information I am imparting my own experience and treatments prescribed for me and which I used as a sufferer of Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Sjogren's Syndrome.

While seeing a naturopath I was concurrently having my health monitored by the family General Practitioner and  a second General Practitioner was providing counselling.  A third General Practitioner who practices holistic medicine provided acupuncture and supported the naturopath's medications by prescribing the same (where possible) when the naturopath could not be consulted.

CFS Update 16/8/13



  1. Hi Sweet Pea. I have just come across your blog via Kate at Fox's Lane. I completely agree with your 3 "non-negotiable" mentioned in your comment there. I have had fibromyalgia for 5 years and have come a long way on my journey to improve and protect my health. It is nice to meet you and I look forward to dropping in often. Warm wishes, Anita.

  2. Thanks for your comment Anita, I must admit, that the hardest part about chronic illness is feeling resentful when I see healthy humans waste their life away! But then I'm being judgemental aren't I?
    Keep up the good work and thanks for dropping by. S.P.

  3. God bless you with all your health struggles - you seem to be an amazing woman! I look forward to getting to know you this year :)

    1. Thanks Laurie, I'm really enjoying the challenge and look forward to learning more about all the participants. It's great that we have people from opposite ends of the world in the challenge. Thanks for dropping by.

  4. You didn't mention what you use for sjogren's dry eyes.
    Do you have dry eyes?

    1. Hi Lois, yes I do get dry eyes from time to time (less often now) which can be quite bothersome. In Australia there is a saline eye drop which can purchased from the pharmacy or the optometrist. It comes in a one use vial and I'm pretty sure there is one that is preservative free. It's been a while since I've needed to use them.
      If you have an herbalist/naturopath/ they may also be able to prepare a herbal eye liquid that can be applied externally for soothing relief. If you have an optometrist it's worth discussing dry eye symptoms with them too, I found my optometrist very understanding and helpful in this regard.
      I suggest you discuss any conditions with your medical practitioner/s.


Comments Welcome

I welcome your comments; they are little personal notes to me. I enjoy reading what each of you have to say. Thanks for dropping by.