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ROAD TO RECOVERY


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#1 Jackmat

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Posted 25 October 2010 - 07:32 PM

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Road to recoveryStressful events created an IBS condition of loose stools, rectal pressure, nausea, dizziness, severe bloating, huge weight loss and food intolerance in August 2008.My food intolerance was mild initially, but worrying about “losing” even more foods seemed to make it worse until by Feb 2009, I could only tolerate boiled rice, boiled chicken, and boiled green vegetables.My personal analysis established that I had developed sensitivities to PRESERVATIVES (I could eat nothing from a can or packet), WHEAT, LACTOSE, FRUCTOSE (the sugar in fruit and vegies would go straight through me), AMINES (found in aged cheese, dark chocolate, overcooked meat etc) and SALICYLATES (found in almonds, peppermint tea). Of all these, wheat was easily the most toxic to my body.I felt certain that my own anxiety was contributing to this, but I couldn’t see how to fix it.Then in March 2009, I became aware of a condition called TMS (Tension Myositis Syndrome) and borrowed a book called “Healing back pain – the mind body connection” written by John Sarno, to learn more about it. I didn’t have any back pain, but the principles in the book were evidently extremely relevant for IBS.TMS occurs primarily when the subconscious mind creates physical pain in the body (eg IBS) as a distraction from repressed anger or emotional/psychological pain. Effectively, the brain tricks you into thinking you have an injury, and consequent physical pain.I gave my subconscious mind a name - Esther and I will refer to everybody else’s subconscious mind as Esther from hereon.Before I could access the book, I began to read stories on the net about how people’s minds could be instrumental in causing pain. I read a story about how somebody had been suffering a disabling back injury for 19 years. He saw a doctor who told him that he was honouring the "Volcano God of Pain" and the more he succumbed to it, the more the God of Pain would want. Its about how pain, and fear of pain, produces MORE pain and how our body has memories. So, by the time I got the book I was very hopeful..I read the book and adopted the following principles for myself:1. I tell myself that my gut is normal and that there’s nothing physically wrong.. 2. Whenever I feel gut pain (shortly after eating), I shift my focus to something psychological like a current concern or problem. In other words, attribute the pain to something in the head (Esther) rather than something wrong in my tummy. That sends my brain a message that it is head related, not body related, and that I am not deceived by the pain.3. Instead of feeling a helpless victim, take charge. Get mad at Esther and tell it I’m not putting up with this pain deception. (Sometimes I would feel pain come on suddenly, so I would yell angrily ‘Stop it Esther, I know what you doing! I know this isn’t real!”). 4. When I feel pain coming on, I’ll laugh. I’ll laugh my head off if I have to. This will send the opposite message to Esther particularly when it thinks it has succeeded in creating pain (ie pain and laughter don't mix).5. Discontinue medication. By dismissing supplements as a cure, I renounce the fact that something is structurally wrong. 6. Remember that TMS is a trick that my mind is playing on me, don’t fall for it. By laughing at or ignoring the pain, I am teaching the brain to send new messages to my gut.Daily reminders:1. The pain is due to TMS, not to a structural abnormality2. TMS exists as a harmless distraction from emotions/anger.3. My stomach is normal, there's nothing to fear, so eating is safe.4. I will not be concerned or intimidated by the pain5. I will shift my attention from the pain to the emotional issues6. Control will become mine (ie my conscious mind), NOT Esther’s7. I must think psychological at all times, not physicalProbably the most effective technique was laughing. Laughing at the moment I felt symptoms when introducing new foods (that I was previously intolerant to) was critical to my recovery. The symptoms would disappear within a couple of minutes. It gave me so much power and control.When I was reintroducing new foods, it was a very careful process. I would introduce foods that I was slightly sensitive to first, and then worked my way up.By about the 3rd or 4th day I was feeling worse. I had been warned that it might happen as Esther puts up a resistance to change. The resistance was only brief and the following day I felt fine.Within a week of adopting the principles in this book and of another book called ‘The Power of your subconscious mind” by Joseph Murphy, I was on the road to recovery. And life has been completely normal ever since. The only food I have refused to reintroduce is wheat. Wheat is poisonous to my body. I am sure that there are people here that would benefit, but few seem to want to give it a try. Everybody seems to want to do tests and more tests on their gut or find a magic pill. Everybody is convinced that the fault is in the gut. Well, maybe in some cases the gut is malfunctioning, but nobody should underestimate Esther.Esther is extremely powerful. It is Esther that allows me to walk. I don’t use my conscious mind to think left leg forward, then right leg forward, etc, Esther does it all automatically. Esther controls my breathing so that I don’t have to use my conscious mind to think “breathe in , breathe out’ - its all done automatically by Esther. When I stop at a red traffic light, again its Esther – there is no conscious thought. But, as powerful as Esther is, it is a slave to your conscious mind. Whatever you tell it to do, it will try an implement. This is the magic of placebo, that when you consciously believe something; it can happen (thanks to Esther).Though most of us know the wonders of PLACEBO, I tend to think that NOCEBO (negative thoughts making us sick) could be responsible for some IBS illnesses on this forum.I think many of us already have the power of recovery – and its in our heads.Good luckJackmat
J A C K M A T

MY RECOVERY STORY ...... http://www.ibsgroup....535#entry810535


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#2 BQ

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Posted 25 October 2010 - 11:10 PM

Thanks Jack for sharing all of this with us. Also you might want to post those books in our GI and Health Related Books & Literature Forum!
Please remember this is a group of folks seeking support on how to live with and manage IBS. THESE ARE ONLY MY OWN THOUGHTS. IF YOU WANT AN EXPERT OPINION, ASK A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL.

#3 iMPERISHABLE

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Posted 29 November 2010 - 02:32 AM

Good post jackmatI think people should take it seriously. Especially those at the early stages of IBS will benefit fast.I know a guy who got IBS and it disappeared just by reading a book of Swami Vivekananda. My own experience is that IBS is not cured by big and expensive treatments but simple, right treatment.

#4 luckygal

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Posted 18 December 2010 - 01:35 PM

I appreciate you responding to my post, sorry everyone bit your head off. I know you aren't giving me medical advice, my worried family members are what keep pushing me to the docor's office, mostly worried about something life threatening.Do you think I should experiement with finding out with what foods I may be intolerant to? I was suprised that having a small amount of a bagel this morning caused the pain about an hour after eating it, I'm sure it had gluten and preservatives, I know it had sugar. No cream cheese or butter. It's not stomach pain or reflux, my stomach never hurts, I only get bloated on occasion at night, no unusual amount of gas. I had that only in my second month of the illness, August.Thanks Jack-Mate

#5 Jackmat

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Posted 18 December 2010 - 06:21 PM

I appreciate you responding to my post, sorry everyone bit your head off. I know you aren't giving me medical advice, my worried family members are what keep pushing me to the docor's office, mostly worried about something life threatening.

After re-reading my post, I think the comment was fair - and its part of the territory.I lost 33 1bs in 3 months and went through quite an ordeal when I was ill. Doctors found nothing and I was lost. There were so many different paths that I could have chosen, but thankfully I chose the right one. But my ordeal was nothing compared to what you and many others here are suffering.Everybody's journey is completely different. So many wellmeaning people (like me) will throw advice at you and its difficult to know what advice to follow.Definitely give up WHEAT. I would be on a rice, chicken and green vegetable diet for a couple of days to see how that goes. And most importantly, I would sit down and read the 2 books that I have recommended. The principles in the books gave me incredible power and control over my body.
J A C K M A T

MY RECOVERY STORY ...... http://www.ibsgroup....535#entry810535

#6 circadrt

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Posted 06 January 2011 - 08:37 PM

Road to recoveryStressful events created an IBS condition of loose stools, rectal pressure, nausea, dizziness, severe bloating, huge weight loss and food intolerance in August 2008.My food intolerance was mild initially, but worrying about “losing” even more foods seemed to make it worse until by Feb 2009, I could only tolerate boiled rice, boiled chicken, and boiled green vegetables.My personal analysis established that I had developed sensitivities to PRESERVATIVES (I could eat nothing from a can or packet), WHEAT, LACTOSE, FRUCTOSE (the sugar in fruit and vegies would go straight through me), AMINES (found in aged cheese, dark chocolate, overcooked meat etc) and SALICYLATES (found in almonds, peppermint tea). Of all these, wheat was easily the most toxic to my body.I felt certain that my own anxiety was contributing to this, but I couldn’t see how to fix it.Then in March 2009, I became aware of a condition called TMS (Tension Myositis Syndrome) and borrowed a book called “Healing back pain – the mind body connection” written by John Sarno, to learn more about it. I didn’t have any back pain, but the principles in the book were evidently extremely relevant for IBS.TMS occurs primarily when the subconscious mind creates physical pain in the body (eg IBS) as a distraction from repressed anger or emotional/psychological pain. Effectively, the brain tricks you into thinking you have physical pain.I gave my subconscious mind a name - Esther and I will refer to everybody else’s subconscious mind as Esther from hereon.Before I could access the book, I began to read stories on the net about how people’s minds could be instrumental in causing pain. I read a story about how somebody had been suffering a disabling back injury for 19 years. He saw a doctor who told him that he was honouring the "Volcano God of Pain" and the more he succumbed to it, the more the God of Pain would want. Its about how pain, and fear of pain, produces MORE pain and how our body has memories. So, by the time I got the book I was very hopeful..I read the book and adopted the following principles for myself:1. I tell myself that my gut is normal and that there’s nothing physically wrong.. 2. Whenever I feel gut pain (shortly after eating), I shift my focus to something psychological like a current concern or problem. In other words, attribute the pain to something in the head (Esther) rather than something wrong in my tummy. That sends my brain a message that it is head related, not body related, and that I am not deceived by the pain.3. Instead of feeling a helpless victim, take charge. Get mad at Esther and tell it I’m not putting up with this pain deception. (Sometimes I would feel pain come on suddenly, so I would yell angrily ‘Stop it Esther, I know what you doing! I know this isn’t real!”). 4. When I feel pain coming on, I’ll laugh. I’ll laugh my head off if I have to. This will send the opposite message to Esther particularly when it thinks it has succeeded in creating pain (ie pain and laughter don't mix).5. Discontinue medication. By dismissing supplements as a cure, I renounce the fact that something is structurally wrong. 6. Remember that TMS is a trick that my mind is playing on me, don’t fall for it. By laughing at or ignoring the pain, I am teaching the brain to send new messages to my gut.Daily reminders:1. The pain is due to TMS, not to a structural abnormality2. TMS exits as a harmless distraction from emotions/anger.3. My stomach is normal, there's nothing to fear, so eating is safe.4. I will not be concerned or intimidated by the pain5. I will shift my attention from the pain to the emotional issues6. Control will become mine (ie my conscious mind), NOT Esther’s7. I must think psychological at all times, not physicalProbably the most effective technique was laughing. Laughing at the moment I felt symptoms when introducing new foods (that I was previously intolerant to) was critical to my recovery. The symptoms would disappear within a couple of minutes. It gave me so much power and control.When I was reintroducing new foods, it was a very careful process. I would introduce foods that I was slightly sensitive to first, and then worked my way up.By about the 3rd or 4th day I was feeling worse. I had been warned that it might happen as Esther puts up a resistance to change. The resistance was only brief and the following day I felt fine.Within a week of adopting the principles in this book and of another book called ‘The Power of your subconscious mind” by Joseph Murphy, I was on the road to recovery. And life has been completely normal ever since. The only food I have refused to reintroduce is wheat; to my body, its poison.I am sure that there are people here that would benefit, but few seem to want to give it a try. Everybody seems to want to do tests and more tests on their gut or find a magic pill. Everybody is convinced that the fault is in the gut. Well, maybe in some cases the gut is malfunctioning, but nobody should underestimate Esther.Esther is extremely powerful. It is Esther that allows me to walk. I don’t use my conscious mind to think left leg forward, then right leg forward, etc, Esther does it all automatically. Esther controls my breathing so that I don’t have to use my conscious mind to think “breathe in , breathe out’ - its all done automatically by Esther. When I stop at a red traffic light, again its Esther – there is no conscious thought. But, as powerful as Esther is, it is a slave to your conscious mind. Whatever you tell it to do, it will try an implement. This is the magic of placebo, that when you consciously believe something; it can happen (thanks to Esther).Though most of us know the wonders of PLACEBO, I tend to think that NOCEBO (negative thoughts making us sick) could be responsible for some IBS illnesses on this forum.I think many of us already have the power of recovery – and its in our heads.Good luckJackmat

Jack,Very well thought out and drafted post! If people with ALL diseases would only realize how much our thoughts and our emotions and the stress, anxiety, depressed moods and other negative emotions play in our body malfunctioning and giving us all kinds of TERRIBLE symptoms, and learn some "tools" to change those thoughts into positive things and do things that promote positive feelings, there would be many more healthy people - IBS sufferers and others! We are in a world where we are bombarded by drugs on TV and in the newspaper and ONLINE for everything from the simple physical things like a cold, to more serious things like cancer. Powerful and wealthy drug companies funnel billions into convincing people that unless they take a pill they will remain sick. Or they imply that taking a pill (their pill preferably) is the ONLY way for people to get rid of a headache or IBS or constipation or back pain or allergies. And that is just total and utter baloney, to use a polite G-rated word :) When people start thinking about what they are thinking, how much time they spend obsessively worrying about their pain or if they will poop today or if 3 prunes are enough or 10 are too many or if they should go to yet another doctor for his golden opinion, they will start to get well. They will realize in many cases that the drugs they are given make them worse rather than better. They are filtered through the liver and can cause serious problems there. They also can give even more symptoms and side effects as many in these forums are aware. The more home remedy treatments and holistic treatments for digestive issues - from ginger and other herbs - to practicing stress reduction and exercising and doing things inside or out that create positive thoughts and as you mentioned, laughter, are SO much more powerful if done on a regular basis. They are certainly going to help alot, even if they do not cure something entirely. And they can not hurt anyone at all. Very nice post. I only wish more people would try looking at what they are "bringing to" the symptoms, through counseling if necessary, rather than going from one doctor and one medicine to another, searching for the right pill or combination of things that will "heal them." I am very conscious of the pain and discomfort people with IBS and all other diseases have. I've had it myself and I have studied medicine now for about 45 years. I have been around many very ill people. And I know attitude and what people do with their thoughts and mind and body has a great deal of effect on how they feel generally, and on how much relief they get from any symptoms they might have at any given time.Very best to you,DRT
We attract that which we focus upon. So best to focus on positive and happy things when given the option. I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV. The advice I give is based on my own experiences. Please consult your physician or health care provider for diagnostic or other help or take whatever I say and use it only if you take full responsibility. It never hurt me, but we are all different.

#7 Jackmat

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Posted 07 January 2011 - 09:11 AM

Thanks for your post DRT.Have you had good results yourself from applying this mind therapy?Perhaps writing music or planting some more bonsai trees might help :-)
J A C K M A T

MY RECOVERY STORY ...... http://www.ibsgroup....535#entry810535

#8 circadrt

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Posted 12 January 2011 - 12:28 AM

Thanks for your post DRT.Have you had good results yourself from applying this mind therapy?Perhaps writing music or planting some more bonsai trees might help :-)

Jack,Yes! I've had very good luck with meditation, guided imagery, cognitive therapy, playing music, watching upbeat fun movies, eating sensibly and drinking plenty of water, not getting hooked on any medications, getting enough sleep, breathing exercises, playing music (guitar and keyboard) walking as much as my back will allow, "thought stopping," EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), and other things that take my focus off any of the various sensations and aches and pains I have daily. I have a few days when I am off with something in my world, causing my fibromyalgia to hurt more or my gut to clamp up some. But I know I can do things to get rid of it 99% of the time. Knowing I can control those things, even if it takes a few hours or doing certain things is POWER, and it feels great to not feel like I am being controlled by an illness or a "disease." I also journal abit, and I am very good at dealing with people - especially if we are having problems. I like to rsolve and deal with problems. If I don't they stay with me and even if I am not thinking about them consciously, my subconscious mind, often located in the gut (expressions like "gut feeling" and "sick to my stomach about it" show how much over the AGES people's GI tracts have been affected by stress, which include anger, envy, fear, and other strong emotions). So if at all possible, I deal with thngs and people so I don't carry junk around and allow it to "eat at me," which includes causing my gut to tighten up and give me any symptoms that tend to go hand in hand with IBS.-D.
We attract that which we focus upon. So best to focus on positive and happy things when given the option. I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV. The advice I give is based on my own experiences. Please consult your physician or health care provider for diagnostic or other help or take whatever I say and use it only if you take full responsibility. It never hurt me, but we are all different.

#9 Jackmat

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Posted 04 February 2011 - 07:55 PM

I've received responses, some in my inbox, from at least 3 IBS'ers in relation to this topic. Many are still so unwilling to try TMS, so I'm posting a copy of the messages of those that have given it a go. If anybody has tried it and been UNSUCCESSFUL, please let me know.Poster: Grandmahurts: Feb 5th 2011: "I have been following advice from Dr. Sarno and Joseph Murphy after reading your posts about IBS and the mind/body information. It seems to work most of the time. I just came across another book on Amazon titled "Unlearn Your Pain" so I ordered that one as well. From reading portions of the book online, it appears this may have some new ideas to try. Thanks for the info on this sub... P.S. you said you named your "subconscious" bad thoughts Esther...I named mine Phineas! Poster: iwillovercome: Feb 4th, 2011: "I read your post "road to recovery" and man did it grab me! I have no doubt that my issue is TMS and I have bought one of Dr. Sarno's books on TMS and also the power of the subconscious mind - but I haven't read it yet. I'm a grad student so my free time is limited :) Anyway, I was wondering how you were able to implement everything in your life! I have found that I have been getting better and better but tonight I had somewhat of a setback, as it seems like it takes ALL of my time to remind myself to think psychological and apply all the principles. Do you have any tips for me? Thank you!!!!"
J A C K M A T

MY RECOVERY STORY ...... http://www.ibsgroup....535#entry810535

#10 idkwia

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 07:03 PM

Jackmat - you may recall that we correpsonded via this site and you suggested the work of Dr John Sarno. I have since read his book called The Mindbody Prescription and I am currently reading his The Divided Mind. My only wish is that he would spend more time in describing how to treat the disorder. However, once I have read this second book I will hopefully be able to put together a treatment regime to work on. I will hopefully remember to report back once I have done this.

#11 Jackmat

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 11:52 PM

My only wish is that he would spend more time in describing how to treat the disorder.

I would have thought my "Road to Recovery" post summed up how to treat it.
J A C K M A T

MY RECOVERY STORY ...... http://www.ibsgroup....535#entry810535

#12 Hello My Name Is

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Posted 18 February 2012 - 01:26 AM

I'm just wondering, (I know I have TMS with regards to carpaltunnel years ago but I am still wavering as far as IBS is concerned)but what makes you sure the wheat is definitely physical and not also TMS?idkwia- my way of treating RSI was basically by reading a lot of other people's testimonies and a mental exercise.. that is.. telling myself that the pain isn't hurting me, there is nothing wrong with me physically. and incremental. that means when there was pain, i would stop, not because i was afraid, but because i didn't want to associate the pain with the activity. basically telling yourself, this pain isn't dangerous.





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