I have been nagging my husband Jeff to go to the doctor for a few months, he is very well at the moment but he has never had his cholesterol or blood sugar checked. Even though he tries to eat right I still feel it is important to have a blood work-up as a measure of his wellness. For months we were going back and forth about it, he just wouldn't commit to a time nor to a particular doctor. That was when Dr. D'Adamo mentioned on the forums that he would be working with some students at the University of Bridgeport, for $120 dollars you could see him his team of students. When I mentioned this to Jeff it was without hesitation that he said, "yes".
So Friday September 11th we headed up to Bridgeport for Jeff's well visit. As an added bonus my friend Claire joined us and had her own visit with the students and Dr. D'Adamo.
We arrived a few minutes early to the Health and Sciences building of the University campus. We waited in a very nice lobby that looked like the school had recently spent money on remodeling. In a few minutes a white coated student came down to personally welcome us. I was delighted to find that it was Julia, a woman my husband and I had met at the IFHI conference in June. She took us up to a well lit doctor's exam room with an exam table covered in white paper and plenty of chairs. Two more students Ann and Kia, greeted us in the room. They wasted no time in starting to gather data for Jeff's SWAMI. Ann took out her centimeter tape measure and began measuring Jeff"s head while Kia started asking him about his medical history and Julia kept track of all the information that was flying around the room. I was very impressed with how they worked as a team each participating equally but none taking the others role. They did a very thorough job of taking his history and when they didn't feel that he fully answered their questions they would gently prod him for more information. One particular issue that Kia kept asking about was what is called a trigger finger. For several years Jeff's fingers have been sporadically locking in place when he uses a knife or performs other tasks that require him to bend his fingers at a certain angle. He then has to pull the finger back into place, it is both painful and annoying. I just thought it was part of his body aging and any normal doctor would simply think the same, but we all know this was no normal doctors visit.
Once Ann completed the measurements she began to use two machines, one to test Jeff's breathe hydrogen and an electrical bio impedance monitor to measure ratios of fat, water content and a whole slew of other numbers about his body mass. I was glad that he did not test positive for hydrogen in his breath this meant that he did not have any signs of bacterial overgrowth in his gastrointestinal tract. The bio impedance monitor showed that he was overweight but well hydrated.
Once the physical exam was over they brought us to another room to wait for them. They then disappeared for a bit to meet with Dr. D'Adamo and go over Jeff's information to develop a plan.
A few minutes later the students accompanied by Dr. D'Adamo entered the room. Dr. D'Adamo greeted us warmly then grabbed the colored marker for the white board and like Harold with the Purple Crayon outlined a plan for O Gatherer Jeff. The prescription was some vitamin supplements to take care of his trigger finger, rosacea, and overall wellness. He also included a weekly exercise regimen of 30 minutes cardio and 15 minutes of weight training three times a week. The white board is a good idea because he moves fast, and I think if I didn't know anything about the Genotype Diet I might have missed some of what he said. Thankfully Julia was busy recording everything just incase we missed some important piece of information. He spent a few minutes answering some simple questions that we had and then was out the door to meet with the next patient, Claire.
The whole time Dr. D'Adamo was at the white board the printer was spitting out pages of Jeff's SWAMI. When it was done the team of students presented us with two binders one with Jeff's SWAMI and one filled with recipes. We were also told that in a week Ann would be calling Jeff to inquire about how the whole "Plan" was progressing.
Julia then escorted us downstairs to the lobby to make a follow-up appointment in three months to check on Jeff's progress.
When I arrived home I immediately ordered the supplements Dr. D'Adamo had prescribed. I think Jeff was most excited to hear that his trigger finger may disappear with daily use of one of the supplements recommended. I am anxiously awaiting them to arrive so he can begin this healing process .
What an amazing conference Martha and Peter held in Norwalk, CT. With the assistance of their wonderful staff they made this delightful weekend a mix of fun and work. I had to laugh at Martha, Peter's wife and time keeper, as she flashed signs to let him know that he only had minutes left before a break. The energy that is expended at these things is enormous and the fact that Dr. D'Adamo makes himself available to conference attendees for personal face time is extraordinary.
I connected with a few friends and made some new ones that I hope I'll see again over the years to come. One friend I ran into was Pat, a fun woman I met in Tennenesse last year. She is a person of great wisdom who has a desire to share her story of how the genotype diet changed her life. Speaking with her, you'll find her enthusiasm infectious as she talks about her diet and her favorite diamond foods. One combination she shared was to dip broccoli in molasses. Boy, is that good! She also told me of her personal goal to just get people to know their genotype and their diamond foods. What a great goal, I loved the simplicity of her message.
After the conference in TN I came away with a sense of urgency regarding the message of the blood type/genotype diet. I wanted to be just like Larry ( call it Larry envy). I wanted to hold classes and get groups together just like Larry does in TN. In short time, however, I found that I am not very good in front of groups of people. At the close of this IFHI conference I felt that same urgency of the message but recognized that my method needed to change to fit my personality better. Well, after talking with Pat I realized all I need to do is offer to measure people, tell them their Genotype, share the information and let them figure it out. Some will be intrigued enough to try it, at least for a few weeks, but ultimately it is solely up to them. Presently my goal is to measure 50 people, a goal I have already begun but will report on at a later time.
At the conference one of the practitioners, an ND, was talking about how a doctor in Conn. was looking for someone to do the SWAMI on his patients in his office. Wow, was all I thought as my mind exploded with the possibilities of something like this. I think I would like that role in a doctors office. I would have access to all the lab work to enter in the SWAMI, and the patients history. Plus you could do all sorts of teaching with people. What a tool that will be for his patients to have. I have great respect for this physician who is willing to pay someone to do this for his patients. He surely must be an unusually person.
I am also thinking of going to school in 2010 to get a Masters degree in Nursing Education. NYS has scholarships available because the growing demand for educators is so great. I would have to teach in a college after I graduate, but what better venue than to talk to young people about individualized nutrition and the Genotype diet.
Always love to hear about you and your personal goals so why not leave me comment here and I will post them.
A special note to Eric the GT Teacher who I met in Tenn. and again in Conn. I am working on changing my photo on this blog,
I really like to go to ethnic markets, here on Long Island where I live a simple drive to Queens or Brooklyn will transport you to the many cultures of the world. I am not much for adventure-some driving but my friend Claire is, she was a taxi cab driver so she has no fear of traveling to unknown places. I had wanted to go to Patel Brothers, an Indian Market, for quite some time so with coaxing from my friend and tales of the great prices I met Claire at the market.
It is not a large store but we where the only non indian people in there. I could tell by the stares that they were as curious about us as we were about the foods and what to do with them. We cruised the aisles and read the labels trying to figure out what some of the items were. We saw Flexseeds ( E is intentional) we knew they were mislabeled flaxseeds, all sorts of mustard seeds both whole and crushed in large bags, huge containers of yogurt, Dosa mix which is lentil flour rice flour and salt, fresh turmeric ( looks like ginger) and huge bags of rice. A lovely young Indian girl saw our distress and tried to help us figure out the different types of mustard seeds. I ended up buying a large bag of crushed yellow mustard seeds, which are not as hot as the brown ones to make homemade mustard. The bags of almonds were the reason I wanted to go to the store in the first place $10 for 4 lbs of nuts is a price that is unbeatable. I bought two large bags to make tamari almonds with, for DH. This helps him to keep away from the smoked almonds that have all sorts of avoids in them.
I bought a few other things just to see what they were like, fresh turmeric which I grated into my morning tofu scramble it made my cast iron pan orangy-yellow, Dosa crepe mix which has a tangy sourdough flavor yummy, a guava for my son which the women behind the counter told me she puts salt and pepper on when she eats it and a large bag of millet flour for making homemade crackers. I will certainly go back to Patel Brothers. I think next time Claire and I will look for an Indian restaurant to go to in the area and I will treat her to lunch.
The past few weeks have been interesting. One of my long time friends Claire and her husband Dave have started on their individual Genotype diets. Claire is a Teacher and Dave a Gatherer it has taken years for them to finally try this way of eating. I am looking forward to watching how the diet transforms them both on the inside and out. Claire is a wonderfully creative cook and has taken her list as a challenge to create satisfying food for her whole family. Dave has begun to cook for himself and is even getting up early at 6 am to make something for lunch, before he heads out to work. They are both losing weight and have noticed increased energy levels. Claire recently confided in me that she is not sure why she waited so long to try this, but sometimes the timing has to be right for people to finally "get it".
My new position at work has taken me into the Endoscopy suites. I now have first hand experience with colonoscopies, gastroscopies and endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP)and am getting a look at the diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. I am still training, but by being in the rooms I am able to see the techniques that the gastroenterologists use. Each doctor has a unique way that they manage the scopes to view the gastrointestinal tract. Two notable cases that I witnessed were the removal of 6 AA batteries from someone's stomach which was self inflicted and the removal of a piece of thick filament from someone's colon. The filament which appeared to be something like weedwacker line had embedded itself into the wall of the colon making its removal very difficult. It took the doctor over an hour to carefully remove both items from each patient but both were fine.
My son (16 blood type O Gatherer) and I recently had a discussion about the american diet and how few vegetables people eat on a daily basis. He said think about it, "Breakfast consists of some sort of cereal or bread, lunch is a sandwich with meat and maybe some fries or chips, and dinner will contain some potato or corn and maybe a green salad. How right he is about how "most people" eat. The exception are those of us who eat vegetables three times a day. My personal challenge over the past few weeks has been to concentrate on eating more fruits and vegetables, so I have begun to start my day with vegetables. My typical morning meal is a tofu scramble loaded with diamond vegetables. Just like many O's begin the day with meat I feel that A's need to begin the day with vegetables. All 6 of the genotype diets contain unlimited amounts of vegetables, this means you can never have enough vegetables.
In a few weeks I will be attending the IFHI conference in Connecticut. I have been reading my manual for the masters level and find it truly fascinating. Dr. D'Adamo writes in an engaging manner that takes the large scope of information and makes it readable. I am looking forward to being in the midst of others with whom I share this common bond, for me it is like being with old friends. I can't wait to meet you all.
My new imac arrived. My old one of only 3 years had been freezing consistently over the past few months, every time that spinning rainbow circle would appear I would have to shut down and restart causing me to lose anything I had just written. Talk about frustrating. My new computer is really nice but was not a purchase my husband and I were anticipating so it dipped into our budget quite a bit. My son was the most excited about the computer, the new imac contains imovie, he is an avid skateboarder and likes to make short movies.
This week I had a very vivid dream, you know the kind very early in the morning just before you wake up. I was holding a book, I opened it and inside were diseases listed by blood type, secretor status and lewis antigen. I looked at the author and it wasn't Dr. D but a book for medical doctors, I closed the book.
During my weekly trip to the supermarket I must have spent 15 minutes just staring at the meat in the fridge and thinking about my grandchildren. Although my children are only 16 and 19 I think about their future spouses and children, often. I know that the decisions I make in the supermarket will impact my family for generations. I love my family and believe that how I feed them is one of the most important things I do.I just couldn't bring myself to buy anything in the store I had had enough of the steriod laden, cornfed and antibiotic damaged meat in front of me. I could also hear Peter's voice in my head " that meat is garbage". I will admit I have struggled with buying grass-fed meat but this week I ordered it.
My friend Lorraine is in her 4th week of following the Teacher diet. I have tried for over 10 years to get her to try this way of life. Finally after experiencing some medical issues she has decided to give it a try. She has eliminated many of her favorite foods and has been discovering new ones and found herself enjoying her tofu. I am so happy for her. Her husband an O Hunter also needs to commit himself to following his genotype diet, but I think he will need more time to decide that he needs to make changes.
Most mornings I wake feeling very grateful for having the Genotype diet in my life. For all the work that Peter has done, the conferences, the chat forum, the books and continued research. I like that he is candid with us on the forum and willing to express his feelings. I don't think I will ever get over the fact that I am part of all this. I can't imagine my life without it.