Gallbladder Surgery Healing Essentials Survival Kit

First things you’ll need immediately post surgery according to my
RN of 30 years mother who helped me settle in:

1. Colase Stool Softener, to take daily 1-2 x day
2. Neproxen anti-inflammatory 1 x day
3. Advil, bedside to wean off pain meds
4. Case or bottled water, bedside
5. Loads of jello and apple sauce
6. Everything essential you’ll need within reach from bed
7. Everything above 5 lbs OUT of reach (don’t lift it for several weeks)
8. A strategy of weaning yourself off pain medicine, first halfing your dose,
and/or replacing the dose with according to my nurse mom 3 Advil.
9. Pillows to tuck by your sides to protect in sleep and someone available if
possible, to help lift you out and up from bed without activating your core
10. Taking inhaled and exhaled deep breaths to prevent Pneumonia

Other helpful essentials I recommend as a certified holistic health coach:

1. A pile of pillows to strategically position *one for each side. One for under-knees support
2. Eye mask for darkness/ear plugs for noise/white noise machine/app, for rest
3. A scarf to compress your side, or purchase a compress from here:
Here’s the homemade demo clasped with flower clip
(can be made more discreet for going outside the home)


4. Papaya digestive enzymes. Here are the benefits.
5. A high quality probiotic
6. Aloe vera juice with wheatgrass, pH balanced water, coconut water
7. TRY some small amounts of salmon or other baked or boiled lean protein
8, CoQ10 and multi-vitamin (to take with food)
9. Vitamin E Oil topically for the scars
10. If you have an infection Oil of Oregano, three drops under
the tongue (a natural powerful anti-biotic)
(alternate with probiotic as it will remove good bacteria you’ll need to replace)

Bonus Ideas:
1. For some Apple Cider Vinegar shots help pain and digestion.
2. Healing Crystals, Gems, Stones: i.e., Quarts, Jade, etc.
3. Lavender essential oil on your pillow for calming
4. Teas for calming and digestion (ginger, green tea, lemon, chamomile)
5. A basic red spotlight / LED light for healing (light therapy) to regrow Mitochondria
6. The colors green/blue for calming sensation and get rid of yellows or reds that cause tension (color psychology)
7. Add items that mentally inspire healing around your resting space
8. Shoulder massage, self, or by someone else
9. Tennis balls for pressure points between shoulder blades to relieve shoulder pain
10. Warming pad (not too hot)/Ice pack – alternating on the site (if no infection/severe inflammation)

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Gallbladder Removal Recipes, Foods to Eat and Avoid After Surgery


Tomato Sauce:

David Jones 2 weeks, post op, says:

I discovered that most store-bought Tomato sauces have some form of OIL in them. I circumnavigated that by making my own Tomato sauce:

1- 28oz can of “Dei Fratelli Tomato Puree”
1- 14oz can of “Muir Glen Organic Diced Tomatoes Fire Roasted”

Combined, made the sauce and damn was it delicious. And it caused no problems for me at all.


Some food for thought: 

  • One size does NOT fit all. Go slow. Eat a little. Wait. See how you feel. Proceed if ten minutes or so pass and you feel fine.

  • Some people can eat a cheeseburger and fries right away no problem while others can never eat this kind of food again.

  • Most are fine after 4-6 weeks, but reintroduce the foods you like slowly and gently to your system.

Bile and Diet 

Bile is made by the liver to help the body digest fats. Fats and oils do not mix well with the water-based environment of the digestive tract, which means bile is needed to emulsify fats and oils in the diet, which helps keep the fat from forming large globules that are hard for the intestines to absorb. Bile is stored in the gallbladder, where it is released in response to large, fatty meals.


The main reason to follow a special diet after gallbladder removal is that it can help reduce the frequency and severity of side effects. After gallbladder surgery, your ability to digest certain foods will be reduced. This means that if you eat the wrong foods, you could develop diarrhea as a result of undigested foods. Fatty and spicy meals may also cause abdominal pain, and other foods might give you gas.

Week 1-6…
In the first few weeks definitely avoid: Fatty, Fried,
Heavy, Hard to Digest Foods Like:

Gravies & Heavy Sauces
Food Made with Lard/Butter
Red Meat
Meat Skin
High fat meats:
Porkbacon, bologna, sausage, duck, ground beef, and ribs
Fried Foods:
Like French Fries, Tater Tots, Pork Rinds, Potato Chips
High Fat Dairy items:
Eggs, Whole Milk, Cream, Cheese, Full Fat Yogurt, Ice Cream, Butter
Spice/Spicy Foods:
Peppers, Chile, Chili, Cayenne, etc.
Sugars & Syrups
Processed Foods
Coca Colas (always avoid anyway)
Tomato sauces with oils
Greasy Fats
Oils (especially heated oils)
Alcohol & Caffeine

Grains and fibrous foods cause pain early after surgery and for some ongoing there after such as:

Cereals/Oat Meal
Whole-grain breads
Nuts and Seeds
Brussels sprouts

Questionable bland foods that are great for some,
and not so great for others:

Rice, pasta, toast, bananas


Some food for thought: 

  • When the gallbladder is removed, bile is less concentrated and it drains continuously into the intestine. This affects digestion of fat and fat-soluble vitamins.
  • How much of a problem it is varies from person to person.
  • With time, the body often adjusts and becomes better at digesting fatty foods
  • The gallbladder collects bile, a fluid that is produced by the liver, and releases it when you eat to aid the breakdown and absorption of fat.
  • Between meals, bile collects in the gallbladder and is concentrated.
  • The amount of fat eaten at one time also factors into the equation. Smaller amounts of fat are easier to digest.
  • On the other hand, large amounts can remain undigested and cause gas, bloating and diarrhea
  • Your liver secretes bile on a schedule that coincides with the natural rhythm of eating three meals per day, so the key to digesting fats without a gallbladder is to time your meals to coincide with your liver’s inherent bile cycles.
  • Add a bile supplement with each meal to ensure a sufficient supply and to support your body’s natural rhythm.
  • Become and avid label reader
  • Aim for 40-50g fat per day.

Week 1-6…
Again, this can vary from person to person so go slowly. Test carefully:

Apple Sauce
Low Fat Smoothies
Low Fat Yogurt
Salad in small quantities
Fish such as Salmon/Tuna in small quantities
Salads without heavy oily or creamy dressings
Fresh or dried fruit in small amounts
Non gas causing vegetables
Non oil based veggie/chicken broth based soups
non oily tomato sauce
Gluten Free breads
Boiled/Baked lean meats such as chicken/turkey/fish
Skim Milk/Low Fat milk
Low sodium foods

Some excellent tips to follow after phasing out the first month or so after gallbladder removal as you introduce safe foods to your diet:

  • Eat smaller, more frequent meals. This may ensure a better mix with available bile.
  • Avoid inflammatory gluten/wheat products
  • Eat organic as often as possible, avoiding Genetically Engineered/modified foods and produce (GMO)
  • Include small amounts of lean protein, such as poultry, fish and nonfat dairy, at every meal, along with vegetables, fruit and whole grains.
  • Eat low fat. Avoid high-fat especially hydrogenated trans-fat foods
  • Avoid fried and greasy foods
  • Avoid fatty sauces and gravies.
  • Instead, choose nonfat or low-fat foods.
  • Read labels and look for foods with 3 grams of fat or less a serving.
  • Gradually increase the fiber in your diet to normalize bowel movements by reducing incidents of diarrhea or constipation.
  • Adding fiber to your diet can worsen gas and cramping worse so slowly increase the amount of fiber in your diet over a period of weeks.
  • Be aware that after gallbladder surgery some people find that caffeine and dairy products are difficult to digest.
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10 Post Op Questions for After Gallbladder Surgery (laparoscopic cholecystectomy)

1. Why isn’t there a one size fits all diet for after surgery? Apple sauce doesn’t even work for me. And I’m always feeling hungry. Is that normal?

2. Why does the pain strike mostly in the morning and night?

3. Why does the ghost of gallbladder past still kick you where it hurts (at the incision point) a week or longer after surgery?

4. Why does it feel as though a new pain arises after so much healing progress has been made, i.e., shoulder pain, back pain, side pain, radiating, and made worse after walking.

5. Why do doctors say “Start for one month on a low fat diet and then try new foods and see how it goes”, when we all want to avoid having to go the trial and error route- think about how this could go when on a date, with colleagues, or friends, and an attack strikes.

6. Why hasn’t someone invented a comforting compress to hold in our sides as we venture out post-op? We instead schlep around with one hand on our right side pressing things in place as we go around.

7. Why are we so sensitive to temperature changes during an attack, and after surgery?

8. Does anyone else have ear ringing (Tinnitus) that started during their gallbladder attack and has lasted after surgery? If so, does anyone know a definitive reason why?

9. How is it that the first few days post-op are so debilitating we need pain medication to sleep. Then we notice progress, and then a whole new set of pain sets in. What are all of these weird new sensations of pain?

10. How exactly can we absorb all of the additional air that was blown into our abdomens? Is there a supplement or type of food that helps to dissipate the gas?

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Gluten Intolerance & Side Pain (the sequel)- Emergency Gallbladder Removal

You may remember this post.

I recently wrote about my painful experience and the connection between gluten intolerance (wheat allergy and sensitivity) and gallbladder pain in the right upper abdominal quadrant.


The interesting thing I’ve found talking to so many people with gallbladder problems is that many of them already know they are gluten intolerant or have had symptoms of gluten sensitivity all of their lives. Colic in infancy, tummy aches in childhood, learning difficulties, and now memory problems, foggy brain and joint pain even as early as in their 30’s.

What you may not know, is that one can have reactions to gluten in their brain or on their skin and not have any digestive symptoms at all. So who would test for celiac or gluten intolerance in that case? No one. These symptoms are frequently gluten related.

And if you have gallbladder disease of one type or another, know that the digestive symptoms of a gluten intolerant person can mimic those of gallbladder with bloating, gas, indigestion, diarrhea, constipation and even severe pain. Gluten has been shown to contribute to gallbladder attacks and discomfort so at least until you are free of gallbladder symptoms, you don’t want to take that chance. Eating any foods you have a sensitivity to can make matters worse.”

If you have a story, please share yours in the comments! Have questions? Want to compare experiences? I’d love to know what others have gone through.

Here’s what happened after my first posts about gallbladders and food allergies interconnected:

That Thursday evening, October 23rd, I tried to reintroduce food to my diet after a good week of fasting on coconut water, aloe very juice, and wheatgrass, along with a lot of water to flush the system.

That Thursday, I nibbled on a bean burrito eating half and very slowly. That evening, I tried a cup of minestrone soup.

The pains crept back in.

On that Friday morning, October 24, I was receiving shocks of pain that almost rendered me immobile. My ears were ringing loudly (Tinnitus) and I nearly fainted with cold sweats upon standing in the morning.

Again the pain was localized only in the upper right quadrant of the abdomen, right under the rib cage, where the gallbladder lives.

I packed a light over night bag and grabbed my phone charger, then waddled slowly to the Lenox Hil Emergency Room a few blocks away here in the West Village, NY. Stating I think I’m having a severe food allergy attack or complications from one, I was admitted. The first thing they did was screen me for Ebola, screening me again once to my ER room.

I was given Morphine, something for nausea and dizziness, a saline IV for dehydration, and an ultrasound and CT were ordered.

WIthin 6 hours of ultrasounds and a CT scan, some bleeding was discovered (ruptured ovarian cysts), the beginnings of a UTI (later discovered misdiagosed), and inflamed ascending colon. I did not have vomiting or diarrhea, so when I was sent home with a diagnosis of Enterocolitis, no pain medicine, and was told I would get better with rest, I figured it must be the truth except it didn’t make sense.

The attending ER doctor said this IS INDEED related to having a gluten allergies and prolonged inflammation of possible cross contamination breaking down the ability of my immune system to fight off infection.

I was told I simply have severe Enterocolitis, and that’s that. I’ll get better with rest.

They were wrong.

The doctors could not see my appendix and had not ruled out appendicitis and said I had sludge in my gallbladder that may go away on its own. I was also informed this is likely due to food allergies cross-contamination.

I didn’t eat anything, but I had a pretty stressful, painful, night, assuming from all the pressing around and testing, but awakened in the morning to alarming pain. it took me half an hour just to sit up in bed.
I could not:

  • lift anything from the ground
  • bend over
  • breathe more than shallow breaths
  • speak louder than just above a whisper
  • hear outside ringing ears
  • balance myself from the dizziness and vertigo
  • stop the cold sweats
  • reach up or outward
  • stand up straight
  • walk normally
  • drink water
  • eat food (anyfood)
  • sit down from standing without shocks of pain
  • stand up from sitting without shocks of pain
  • go to the restroom
  • stop thinking I may be DYING.

    I’d stayed with my neighbor Laura the night before as she graciously looked after me with as much caution and care as I had been giving myself. I was very lucky.

By this point, my stepfather was on his way to my apartment from Alabama and now about an hour away.

I called my sister- by this point I’ve curled onto my left side on my bed and cannot move. Shocks of electric pain start to surge through my abdomen and with each one, worse than the one before.

I was sure I may die if I couldn’t take action RIGHT NOW. 

When I involuntarily shrieked into the phone with my sister 1000 miles away more than once, she put me on hold and called an ambulance.

FIFTY MINUTES LATER, the ambulance finally arrived with full fan fare.

I couldn’t move, and EMTs were banging on the door. No answer.

I COULDN’T answer.

Remember… I could only whisper and couldn’t call for help.

The fire trucks arrive. I still haven’t been able to move from my position. They proceed up the 6 flights of stairs with an axe.

Someone has called from the ambulance service to explain to my sister what’s happening.

Before they charge the door and axe it to pieces, I had to force myself through pain to standing and unlock and open the door. Now i’m frozen in one place. To move one inch meant unbearable pain that brings me to weeping.

The EMTs first screened me for Ebola (naturally). Then, lifted me and placed me (saying, completely relax your muscles and let us do the work) into an upright stretcher seat. I had been pouring sweat with tear streaked face trying not to scream in pain.

Once lifted and placed two strong EMTs carried me down the 6 stories of spiraling stairs. Every bump felt being stabbed by a rusted jagged knife.

Here are the stairs descending from what has since been dubbed Rapunzel’s West Village Tower.
A 6th floor walk up:
My 67 year old freakishly fit stepfather hurdled those flights of stairs like an athlete to find me not dead thankfully, but very alive and in pain, in my apartment being hoisted down the stairs. That I have died was his worst fear when he arrived to find:

5+ police cars
2 fire trucks with ladder and axes
2 ambulances

Imagine the thoughts going through his mind knowing I’d been upstairs in debilitating pain an hour ago and not able to teleport himself. I imagine he was pretty happy to see I was still conscious and breathing.

Coming out of my West Village apartment attended by emergency workers, on Perry Street and 4th, the most elegant street in the city, where across from my apartment, tourists by the dozens are snap photos 24/7 of the Carrie Bradshaw Sex in the City stoop.

Now their attention was on me being carried out and put in an ambulance. I hid my face in my palms. No less than 40-50 people had gathered to see who may be coming out of one of these brownstones on a stretcher.

Probably hoping to see a well known movie star in distress to go home with a photo and juicy story.

We were driven to Mt. Sinai Beth Israel. The most painful bumpiest ride of my life to a world class hospital (lucky me that it was the nearest). With my stepdad gripping my hand, and my wonderful EMT giving me oxygen and assuring me it’ll be okay, I felt ever closer to relief.

By the time I was there to be triaged in the ER, I was whisked to a holding station, next to a woman receiving STD treatment.

I was yet again given Morphine, and given the Ebola screening again… for now the 4th time.

Asked the same questions, and then scheduled for new ultrasounds and CT scans. They had to wait 23.5 hours for me to be radiated again by the CT scan, so they reviewed my recent discharge paperwork from the ER and we waited.

My step dad the wonderful parent he is, was so exhausted from travel and stress he was falling asleep sitting straight up in his chair at the hospital. Finally he was able to eat as I was going in for my CT scan.

Upon receiving my new scan I was admitted to the hospital in a regular room for overnight observation and more testing. The doctors were skeptical of the diagnosis I just received. I was not presenting symptoms of Enterocolitis.

Surprisingly, each health care worker who asked what I do for work was ECSTATIC to hear I am a holistic health coach and hyper-personalized how they spoke of my treatment and potential diagnosis. It was as if each time it was mentioned, I was praised for such important work. They seemed excited to speak more in depth about the science of my plight.

Oh, and THIS was my view from bed… unbelievable city views… Nope not kidding:

Back to the subject matter…

They suspected gallstones or appendicitis. 

Every hour I was being stuck, and every four hours given pain, nausea, and antibiotic meds.

So far, I DID NOT have a UTI (misdiagnosed), or gallstones, or kidney stones, or Enterocolitis (misdiagnosed). The doctors has a puzzled forlorn look about them. They did notice that my abdominal organs were quite inflamed, but didn’t know exactly why. They did notice that I had ruptured some ovarian cysts. I didn’t even notice this pain as it was being masked by the other pains.

Cancer was on my mind and it seemed on theirs too. i even inquired about the potential of the worst case scenario and they would only reply that they’re trying to get to the bottom of what is exactly wrong and we’ll know soon… but that I shouldn’t worry. It’s probably going to be simple and easy to fix.

By the next day they were sending in teams of doctors who were interviewing me with questions and reviewing my chart with me. Very thorough and I was so pleasantly surprised to learn that my room was where the nurses and nursing students liked to hang out because of the good energy/vibes. I was actually really enjoying my hospital stay, despite being pretty worried about what was happening to me.

By this time I’d also read my scan that i have a couple lesions on my liver. Later my surgeon told me it’s nothing to worry about and that many people have it.

So, now it’s 3AM 10/25/14 and a gastro surgeon is in my room telling me they’re investigating my gall bladder further- that likely I won’t need surgery but it isn’t ruled out.

She explains how my gallbladder didn’t make stones but is filled with a sand like substance called sludge. They’re trying to figure out what to do with it.

Around 8AM, my surgeon Dr. Steele enters the room with his team, wakes me up to introduce himself and team, and points to my abdomen and explains I’ll have four incisions.

“Wait, I’ll have incisions??”

He says “Oh I’m sorry! No one has talked with you about surgery yet?”  … “Nooo they haven’t!”

“Well… that’s the plan.”

I’m being scheduled for a laparoscopic cholecystectomy.

A four incision minimally invasive procedure to remove my gallbladder because it has failed to function anymore. It simply produces sludge. Equal to sand, causing me great pain. It’s also infected, and wreaking havoc with my other organs. It has to come out.

Later he tells me it was a difficult process due to “well developed muscle tissue” which will also make healing more painful.

I’m given four rounds of blood thinner so my blood doesn’t clot in surgery.

That day, my step dad buys me a track suit and underwear. He says this is probably not my style, but he hears some people don’t like to wear hospital gowns and it is just nice to have your own stuff. Aww, the feels!

Friends visit, bring the sweetest get well gifts, bust most importantly themselves, and it’s another day of broth and jello for me, until 12 hours pre-op when I can only have ice cubes.
Party in the hospital!

On the day of surgery…

I’m wheeled along side my step dad walking with me to the surgery waiting area. I’ve had a procession of nurses all morning wishing me luck, and coming by to tell me I have a great surgeon not to worry, and in general came by just to hang out before hand. I really loved the staff here.

During my waiting time, the nurses joked around with me and my step dad, and I asked jokingly could I see my gallbladder after.

In the operating room, they explain how they’ll perform the procedure and that they’ll blow me up with air like a puffer fish, to see and be able to work inside my abdomen. I was fascinated and disgusted all at once.

I really meant to ask to see my gallbladder.

Then all the sudden I was out- no recollection of next events. And no telling what I said before I was truly out. I probably asked my very handsome surgeon to marry me or go out with me or something ridiculous like that.

I awakened in the recovery room with again, very cheerful nice nurses and staff. They helped me wake up saying “rise and shine” and explaining how important it is to come back to coherency. I really liked that they were so informative.

The ONE THING I NOTICED AND STILL REMEMBER: I had SO MUCH clarity and physical energy from not being sick anymore…instantly!

Had I not had surgery holding me back, I could have gone for a run. I truly felt a surge of RENEWED WELLNESS, I had not felt in a long long time.

I mentioned it to them. They said “Good! Then the surgery did what it was supposed to do.”

This was the first time I could differentiate the feeling of sickness and wellness. I realized i had been ill for a long time.

I returned to my hospital room. To the crystals I’m borrowing from my friend Nancy for healing (they work). To my step dad waiting, and nurse and staff waiting to welcome me back, offer me juice, jello, broth, and comforting conversation, and to encourage rest and sleep.

I had these nifty leg compressors on to ensure no blood clots. Hours of robotic massage.
Can I please take these home with me?

And, my friends visited and relieved my step dad so he could finally rest.

One night of observation and the possibility of checking out the following day if no complications.

My mom and sister booked their flights to match up with my check out for after care and family support. I’m so grateful and needed them so much!

My step dad needed rest too, so I know he must have been incredibly grateful too!

Friends had come by every night. I was so grateful.

I’ve now made friends with my neighboring patient and even given her and her son a coaching session for free about pain management and liver cleansing.

By check out day, October 28th. I’ve run out of business cards, and given a mini no shampoo session to the nurses helping me clean my hair that morning.

I finally got to eat REAL FOOD! OMG The food here was better than the food at many restaurants.

See for yourself. This is Mock Vegan Crab Cake with peppers, tomato, broccoli, and carrots:

Here’s the “No Poo” Shampoo Free cleaning process that became a mini-workshop
for staff on my last day:


I was so happy with the interaction between healthcare staff and myself as a holistic
professional I could have stayed another week!

I didn’t think I could be any happier with my stay until…

A Reiki practitioner entered my room offering me a session for FREE. Yes, for free!

She exuded good energy, and she was excellent at her work. She told me about how she could stay in my room all day. How she felt such good energy from me and how my room is filled with it. That this explains why everyone likes to be in here and hang out (staff).

Once she left, it was time to go when I felt ready to leave (Never! I’ll stay til the very last seconds allowed … except … my family looked quite ready to go, so off we went). I was genuinely sad and not feeling quite ready!

But the best parting gift was still to come…

I was given information to take advantage of an opportunity to volunteer my coaching services once or twice per week with ability to leave my card with patients!

I left feeling like I’d had the worst pain in my body’s purging of an organ that was poisoning it and in the outcome I would gain the silver lining of acceptance of my own craft in at least this world class hospital but a glimpse of how ALL traditional healthcare has come to accept holistic practices as integrative medicine.

I am not only on the road to healing, but felt for the first time a real gravitational pull of what it is we have to offer the world, as medical professionals not only accepted what I had to share while in the hospital, but asked to learn more!

I realized my friends here are family, and that my family are my life long guardian angels in the flesh:

One cab ride home, and I was nestled in bed, feeling like this hospital stay was a good dream, and now all I need to do is work through the pain of healing and get back onto my path of purpose to help the healing of others.

Since then… I have thought of a lot of questions!

I have come up with a few answers.


It’s been up and down. Some days feel like real progress and strength gained. Then the next I feel many days’ worth of backwards steps where I just lie in bed with the crystals and looking at the beautiful sight of hospital gifts and get well cards. You can read the mystery questions here and share your story, answers, questions in the comments if you’ve gone through something similar. I’d love you forever for contributing insight!! I mean, I love you anyway but you know what I mean.

Ultimately my purpose is renewed.

Friendships and family bonds reinforced. Here are a few family members and friends. Missing in this picture is Nancy who has been consistently there for me during this time. The staff were extra impressed at her french braiding talents:


I even got a new position while going through all of this!

The most important role I’ve ever held, and I achieved it two days post op. After healing, I’ll be strategizing and promoting preventative wellness in the military.

I feel as though my body’s expression of purging was to make room, space, and energy for this next chapter in my life.

So in the end, I ask others going through something similar, to listen to your body, and your surroundings. What is it that you are supposed to do in response? What is your body trying to make space for in your life?

If you listen you will know.

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NY doctor recently back from West Africa tests positive for Ebola, officials confirm

NY doctor recently back from West Africa tests positive for Ebola, officials confirm
By Ray Sanchez and Shimon Prokupecz, CNN
Your video will begin momentarily.

updated 10:27 PM EDT, Thu October 23, 2014

NEW: Official: Ebola patient left Africa on October 14, arrived in U.S. on the 17th
NEW: He checked temperature twice daily, wasn’t symptomatic until Thursday, official adds
It is New York City’s first diagnosed case of Ebola
The 33-year-old physician was working with Doctors Without Borders

New York (CNN) — [Breaking news update, posted at 10:20 p.m. ET]
After confirming that tests showed a patient tested positive for Ebola, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said, “We want to state at the outset there is no reason for New Yorkers to be alarmed.”
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that authorities are “as ready as one could be for this circumstance.” He noted that the situation in his state is different than what happened in Dallas, where a man was diagnosed with Ebola and two health care workers who treated him contracted the virus.

“We had the advantage of learning from the Dallas experience,” Cuomo said.
Mayor: Working to protect all New Yorkers Gov. Cuomo: We’re as ready as one can be Doctor tested for Ebola is Craig

Spencer posted an image to Facebook on September 18 from Brussells, saying “Off to Guinea with Doctors Without Borders (MSF). Please support organizations that are sending support or personnel to West Africa, and help combat one of the worst public health and humanitarian disasters in recent history.”

The governor said that it’s believed four people came in contact with the person, and authorities are in contact with all four of those people. It is not yet clear whether authorities where counting only those people who came into contact with the man after he became symptomatic.

The Ebola patient finished his work as a doctor in the West African country of Guinea on October 12, left Africa two days later via Europe, and arrived at New York’s John F. Kennedy airport on October 17, New York City health commissioner Dr. Mary Travis Bassett said.

He had no symptoms throughout his journey and immediately after arriving in the United States, said Bassett, who added that he checked his temperature twice a day after returning to the United States.

[Previous story, posted at 9:25 p.m. ET]

A Doctors Without Borders physician who recently returned to New York from West Africa has tested positive for the Ebola virus, becoming the first diagnosed case in the city, a law enforcement official briefed on the matter told CNN.
The doctor, identified as Craig Spencer, 33, came back from treating Ebola patients in Guinea about 10 days ago, and developed a fever, nausea, pain and fatigue Wednesday night.

The physician, employed at New York’s Columbia Presbyterian Hospital, has been in isolation at Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan since Thursday morning, the official said.

At a news conference Thursday, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio sought to allay public concerns about the spread of the deadly virus, saying that “careful protocols were followed every step of the way” in the city’s handling of the case. The hospitalized doctor has “worked closely” with health officials, the mayor said.

Photos: The Ebola epidemic Photos: The Ebola epidemic

NYC doctor being tested for Ebola Family: Infected nurse is Ebola-free

The doctor exhibited symptoms of the Ebola virus for “a very brief period of time” and had direct contact with “very few people” in New York, de Blasio told reporters.

On his Facebook page, Spencer posted a photo of himself in protective gear. The page indicates he went to Guinea around September 18 and later to Brussels in mid October.

“Off to Guinea with Doctors Without Borders (MSF)” he wrote. “Please support organizations that are sending support or personnel to West Africa, and help combat one of the worst public health and humanitarian disasters in recent history.”
In a statement, Columbia Presbyterian Hospital said the doctor was “a dedicated humanitarian” who went to “an area of medical crisis to help a desperately underserved population.”

“He is a committed and responsible physician who always puts his patients first,” the hospital statement said. “He has not been to work at our hospital and has not seen any patients at our hospital since his return from overseas.”
The CDC had people packing up to go to New York on Thursday, and a specimen from the physician was to be sent to Atlanta for testing, an official familiar with the situation told CNN’s Elizabeth Cohen.

Investigators took the case seriously from the outset because it appeared the doctor didn’t quarantine himself following his return, the law enforcement official said. The doctor traveled to Brooklyn and then back to Manhattan on Wednesday night, the official said.

In a statement Thursday, Doctors Without Borders confirmed that the physician recently returned from West Africa and was “engaged in regular health monitoring.” The doctor contacted Doctors Without Borders Thursday to report a fever, the statement said.

The law enforcement official said the doctor was out in public. Authorities also quarantined his girlfriend, with whom he was spending time since his return from Africa.

The doctor began feeling sluggish a couple of days ago, but it wasn’t until Thursday, when he developed 103-degree fever, that he contacted Doctors Without Borders, authorities said.

The case came to light after the New York Fire Department received a call shortly before noon Thursday about a sick person in Manhattan. The patient was taken to Bellevue.

New York’s Office of Emergency Management was expected to activate its emergency operations center in Brooklyn, with the focus of tracking down anyone who may have come into contact with Spencer, the law enforcement official tells CNN.

Mark Levine, a city councilman who represents the doctor’s Manhattan neighborhood, said earlier Thursday, before news broke of the doctor’s positive test, that city health department workers were canvassing the area, distributing information on the disease door-to-door, according to CNN affiliate WABC.

“The goal right now is to make sure people don’t panic,” he said.

The health department said a special ambulance unit transported a patient suffering from a fever and gastrointestinal symptoms.

The doctor returned to the U.S. within the past 21 days from one of the three West African countries currently facing the outbreak of virus, the health department statement said.

Bellevue Hospital is designated for the “isolation, identification and treatment of potential Ebola patients” in the city, the statement said.

“As a further precaution, beginning today (Thursday), the Health Department’s team of disease detectives immediately began to actively trace all of the patient’s contacts to identify anyone who may be at potential risk,” the health department statement said.

“The chances of the average New Yorker contracting Ebola are extremely slim,” the statement said, adding that the disease is spread by direct contact with the bodily fluids of an infected person.

Bellevue Hospital is one of the eight hospitals statewide that Gov. Andrew Cuomo designated earlier this month as part of an Ebola preparedness plan, the state heath department said.

Ebola has killed nearly 5,000 people, mostly in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. But fears about its spread has mounted since the first person diagnosed with the disease in the United States was hospitalized in Texas last month.

Thomas Eric Duncan, who had flown from Liberia to Dallas, died on October 8. Two nurses who treated him became infected with the virus and are undergoing treatment, with the cases raising questions about the ability of local and federal officials to deal with an outbreak in the United States.

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Posted in Natural Remedies and Healing, Prevention

Are You Gluten Intolerant? Everything You Need to Know:


Learning that gluten was affecting my ability to focus and concentrate was a real wake-up call for me. Discovering that my daughter had Hashimoto’s Disease in which eating gluten can cause destruction of the thyroid gland was another. So, even though jumping on the bandwagon of gluten-free living was the last thing on my mind, clearly more serious health issues are at stake here than a little indigestion.


The interesting thing I’ve found talking to so many people with gallbladder problems is that many of them already know they are gluten intolerant or have had symptoms of gluten sensitivity all of their lives. Colic in infancy, tummy aches in childhood, learning difficulties, and now memory problems, foggy brain and joint pain even as early as in their 30’s.
What you may not know, is that one can have reactions to gluten in their brain or on their skin and not have any digestive symptoms at all. So who would test for celiac or gluten intolerance in that case? No one. These symptoms are frequently gluten related.

And if you have gallbladder disease of one type or another, know that the digestive symptoms of a gluten intolerant person can mimic those of gallbladder with bloating, gas, indigestion, diarrhea, constipation and even severe pain. Gluten has been shown to contribute to gallbladder attacks and discomfort so at least until you are free of gallbladder symptoms, you don’t want to take that chance. Eating any foods you have a sensitivity to can make matters worse.


A person who is intolerant to gluten reacts in some way to a protein found in grains such as wheat, rye, barley etc. One can have an allergy or just gluten sensitivity, but the reactions can be devastating to one’s health with or without a true allergy.


Wheat today is a new hybridized version of the original wheat. It has been developed to be insect resistant, draught resistant, cold resistant, heat resistant and anything else that makes it more lucrative. It is now a completely different protein and a non-food. It causes immune reactions in the body – i.e. the body views it as a foreign substance and creates antibodies to attack it. Add to that the processing that it goes through to be water soluble and impervious to normal decay and you realize that it is no wonder we are reacting to it – it would be more appropriate to ask why are some people not reacting? Or is it that they are not aware they are, or that they are not reacting yet?


Gluten is what gives the chewiness or elasticity to dough and what helps it to rise. Gluten is a complex or composite protein found in most grains and is composed of the simple proteins glutenin and gliadin. Glutenin and gliadin are most commonly referred to collectively as gluten but people can be intolerant to one or the other, or to both proteins and to any of 12 or more peptides present within them. Current lab testing today tests for only gliadin antibodies and not both. Cyrex Labs, however, does test for both. There is one peptide that is formed as part of digestion of the gliadin molecule of the gluten protein that some people are allergic to called gluteomorphin. It is addictive in nature and gives withdrawal symptoms to those affected when they remove gluten from the diet. These people tend to feel worse and even get new and different symptoms when they go off gluten. This may last from some days to several weeks. Just be aware of this as you embark on a gluten-free diet. Going off gluten does not make anyone worse except in the withdrawal stage and only some will have that reaction.



abdominal pain
abdominal distention or bloating
gas/flatulence – can be foul smelling
foul smelling stools, possibly fatty and floating
acid reflux
concurrent lactose intolerance
borborygamus (rumbling noises in the stomach/intestines)
digestive-related fatigue
failure to thrive in infancy and stunted growth in children


headches (especially migranes)
foggy brain – difficulty focusing, concentrating and remembering
swelling and inflammation
pain – joint, head, bone, muscle
muscle cramping
lack of motivation
mentstrual disorders
nerve damage (peripheral neuropathy – tingling/numbness in hands and feet)
clumsiness, lack of balance, difficulty walking (ataxia, also a nerve disorder)
epilectic seizures
respiratory problems
skin problems such as eczema, psoriasis, rosacea, acne and rashes (see dermatitis herpetiformis) and hives
nose bleeds
hair loss
blood sugar issues such as hypoglycemia, insulin resistance and diabetes
night blindness
ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder)
mouth sores
unexplained weight gain or weight loss
nutritional deficiencies
tooth and gum problems
neuromytonia or Isaac’s Syndrome – hyperexcitability of the nerves affecting the muscles
myopathy or weak muscles


It seems that one of the common grounds for autoimmune diseases in general is gluten intolerance.

Diabetes type 1
Hashimoto’s thyroiditis
Sjogrens Disease
Alopecia Areata
Liver disease-autoimmune
Dental enamel defects
Raynaud’s syndrone



Even though Celiac Disease (CD) is an autoimmune disease and gluten intolerance has not advanced that far and may never do so, the symptoms are identical. In fact, the only way one can tell if it is celiac is by a test that shows major degradation of the villi of the intestinal wall. This is an advanced form of gut permeability or leaky gut. A compromised intestinal lining leads to food allergies, loss of self-tolerance and autoimmune reactions and eventually autoimmune disease. Most people who have chronic intestinal symptoms have some form of gut permeability. With celiac, the destruction has compromised the absorptive ability of the intestine which results in malnutrition and other problems. You may be on your way there, or almost there already, but if the test does not show a specific amount of destruction, you will not be given the label of celiac. So you can have antibodies attacking your intestinal tissue (and skin and brain for that matter) but if that degree of atrophy or destruction has not yet occurred, you will be told you do not have celiac. But you do have symptoms. “So, fine. What’s causing these symptoms then?” Good question. Answer: “Gluten intolerance that is not celiac disease or not full-blown celiac yet.” Maybe you’d like to remove the gluten from your diet before it becomes so advanced?


There are measures that can be taken to repair some of the damage done by gluten or other offending things such as drugs, viruses, bacteria and environmental toxins. The success of your program depends on amount of damage, compliance and state of your immune system. Some people only need a few months; most need many months or even up to 3 years. And in some instances, with, for example celiac or autoimmunity towards the lining of the intestine, the best you can hope for is to arrest the progression of the disease. The most important measure for all stages of damage is to remove gluten in all forms and from all sources from your diet. This is a learning process. You need to read, ask, keep a diary of your symptoms, even if you think they’re unrelated, and read some more.
However, removing all possible allergens and finding you still have problems such as inflammation is frustrating. What’s important to know here, is that once the cascade of inflammation has been set in motion, it can perpetuate itself. In other words, you may need to break that cycle first or at least concurrent with removing the gluten and other offending foods or supplements.


This is the most important part for success. Many people think they are gluten-free because they stop eating bread and pasta, etc. It involves much more than that. Studying this closely and reading labels and asking what foods are made with is essential. I have ordered roasted chicken from three different places and read the ingredients on all of them. Then I ordered some from a 4th place and did not read them, assuming it would be gluten-free. Wheat was added to the herbs sprinkled on the top! NEVER ASSUME. For just such a mistake we have a product called Glutenflam that helps with the digestion of gluten and casein. It won’t do the job if you’re eating it regularly, but for small amounts hidden in foods like this and on the rare occasion, it is an invaluable tool every gluten-intolerant person needs in their kit (or purse).

STEP TWO – REPAIR THE GUT LINING so that it does not allow leakage of large proteins though the intestinal wall. This is done by following an inflammation-free diet which includes removing all allergens and known inflammatory foods such as sugars and nightshades. Included in the nightshade family are bell peppers, eggplant, potatos and tomatos. Repairvite is a powdered formula that encourages the repair of the lining of the intestines and is invaluable to add to your program. Just know that taking Repairvite without removing the inflammatory triggers will not be nearly as effective.


We tend to think of stress as external sources such as job and finances, relationships, etc. These are definitely stressors; however, gut inflammation, an ulcer, a gut bacteria – these cause stress on your whole system, and especially your ability to think and focus. If you have chronic stomach pain or chronic burning symptoms, use Gastro-ULC and H-PLR for a month. This is one inflammatory trigger that needs to be corrected quickly.

Assaulting your body with sugar causing hormonal fluctuations, eating foods that cause your body inflammation, lack of sleep and pain are all part of the cycle of stress, inflammation and feeling badly. If you have inflammation which includes any pain and any brain fog, order The Inflammation Support Kit and read about brain support, blood sugar support and insomnia as well. They are all part of a viscious cycle you’ll need to understand in order to unravel.




If you are gluten intolerant, eating gluten can set off inflammation anywhere or everywhere in the body – gut, brain, joints, neck, gallbladder, etc. When there is inflammation present, even undetectable, the body’s adrenal glands secrete cortisol in an attempt to reduce the inflammation. This extra work puts a strain on the body resulting in low energy.


Reactions to allergies or intolerances can set off a cascade of inflammation. Sometimes people don’t notice the difference right away from a gluten-free diet. But if they try it long enough (along with other major allergens as well) they are quite surprised to notice the degree of pain they experience when they add it back in again. Over the years I’ve had working with people, this is the most dramatic, revealing and life-changing piece of information they can receive. Learning that a dietary change can make such a big difference in pain, puts you back in the driver’s seat of your own health. It gives you hope; it gives you control; it can give you your life back.

Sometimes support is needed putting this all together. Consultations are available.

What people are saying…

I just wanted to let you know that although having been diagnosed with gallstones, I decided to alter my diet as opposed to surgery. I felt better, but was still “feeling” my gallbladder every now and then. Wasn’t able to eat eggs for two years as it made me sick every time I ate them. Only after I stopped gluten I started to feel better, sleep better, not get tired during the day and now I can have up to 2 eggs per day and I don’t feel sick nor do they bother my gallbladder. Gluten is a slow poison in today’s modern world. Yes it needs some adjusting, but once you feel the benefits, every effort is so worth it! T.


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Gluten Allergy Types & Tests, with Charts and InfoGraphs




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Posted in Food Allergies and Sensitivities