Neuroplasticity and the human brain in action

When we began the Brain Balance program, I knew that dietary changes would be a big component of this journey. But Oh.my.goodness. I had no idea it would transform my life. My children are being blessed too! It’s just that I am living in my body, and not theirs. To a large extent, due to this fact, I can’t feel the effects of the changes that are happening to them. I see good signs in their sweet faces as well, but I FEEL the changes in myself. I know that helping me has helped them significantly. For fourteen years I have read about ways to help our family to live and eat more wellfully (is that even a word?). In the past five years especially, I have watched as researchers in the health and medical industries are starting to come to the same conclusions. Food is the best medicine. We are coming to discover that a mix of Eastern and Western medicine traditions can work together to heal our bodies. Let me just come up with a quick list of some sources I’ve studied in recent years.

There is Alejandro Junger, who came up with best-selling, research-based books, Clean and Clean Gut. After seeing his own health decline as a medical professional and becoming a patient in his own field of medicine, he determined that he needed to look elsewhere for the help he needed. Then there is Mark Hyman, who has advocated Functional Medicine for many years, and whose clients see large-scale results. And there is William J. Walsh. He is a psychiatrist who has helped tens of thousands of patients conquer mental health challenges through nutritional therapy. His book, Nutrient Power: Heal your Biochemistry, Heal your Brain is a tightly researched treatise on a number of disorders which can be helped this way. And who hasn’t  heard of Joe Cross ? He cured himself of a rare autoimmune disorder by way of juice fasting, as seen in his documentary, Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead.

All of these people have inspired me with their discoveries, and have intellectually prepared me to make dietary changes. However, there is a huge difference between learning and reading about a given solution to health problems, and actually DOING the work to apply the stellar concepts in my life! For years I have read and researched and concluded, and read and researched and concluded, that I and my family could benefit from making dietary changes. But this is the first time in my married and mommy life that I have chosen to COMMIT myself unwaveringly to follow a program. Admittedly, I have wavered in my commitment to the BB diet. I almost named this post “The Pendulum.” But the results I’ve seen in my own chemistry has convinced me that it is worth persevering, and worth my best efforts to comply completely. I have mentioned it before, but it must be said again. Changing my diet has virtually eliminated my mood issues.

And so this post will also highlight more of the foods we’ve been eating and experimenting with. But good news, the exercises are helping as well! Just yesterday I saw a change in Big B that I hadn’t noticed before. As a disciplinary measure in our home, we have adopted the Leap Frog consequence. We got this idea from a therapist three years ago who was helping Dash with some severe behavioral and emotional issues. Dash went to live with my brother and his family for a time, and while he was there, he learned about cause and effect. When unwanted behavior arose, he had to do a set of Leap Frogs. This means literally, that he had to squat down on the floor with a deep bend in his knees, using his hands to balance on the floor, squat down and then spring straight back up as high as he could. The minimum set of 10 Leap Frogs can be tiring, and the kids have learned that it’s better to comply with whatever is being asked of them, rather than suffer this consequence. This is a pretty good demonstration of a Leap Frog. Anyway, Big B has always had a really hard time completing a really great Leap Frog. He would very slightly bend his knees, and just jump up high. But this week, after he had a big fight, he earned a set of 10 Leap Frogs. As he proceeded to execute them, we saw for the first time, a well-executed Leap Frog. A deep bend in his knees, and he didn’t wobble on his landing at all. And then he did 9 more! We were so excited to see this, we clapped at the end, and told him what a great job he did. Freckles wasn’t too happy that we were congratulating him under the circumstances, but even he was transfixed, watching his brother carry out his consequence.

Oh, and Big B has also had less meltdowns on Days 18-25. AND, he seems to be doing less tummy touching than before, so lots of good progress! Michael and I were talking last night about all of the good things that have happened in our lives as a direct result of Big B’s presence in our family. We have learned so much through the years, while on the quest to understand his needs and also Dash’s. They have taken us in new directions that would not have been possible without their combination of  needs. I have had to stretch as their mom in countless ways, which makes me very grateful. I wouldn’t trade the experience we have gained, and I definitely wouldn’t trade my beautiful kids for all the riches in the world.

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This is the view from my back window. My kids love to visit Leilani’s house, and jump on their trampoline. Sometimes it is hard to get them back home.

Here is a look at our daily exercise sessions.

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Olfactory

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Primative Reflex Work, BB Music CD Playing in Background

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Core Strength and Primative Reflex Work

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Yes Baby Blues is a Streaker

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More Core and Reflexes Work

Dash, Freckles doing Sit-Ups, Big B doing a Starfish

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Big B doing Sit-Ups (20 today, his record!)

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Dash and Freckles on Push-Ups. Still working up to military Push-Ups

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Eye Exercises

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Cute Daddy

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Gorgeous Tomatoes from Sweet Lady at Church! Thanks A.H.!

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Guess What I am Making

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Yes, Big Bowl of Salsa, Delish

Just chop up all of the above ingredients, mix with juiced lemons, and refrigerate.

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Daddy’s version of Posho, with yellow corn meal.

See YouTube demonstration here (1:06-4:06 is just a lot of stirring.)

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He reminisced about being in Uganda today, when we ate this with a homemade Chili.

It was that good.

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Baby Blues supervising Sunday Dessert Prep, Recipe Here. Use Coconut Sugar or Raw Stevia to replace refined white.

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Organic Palm Oil Shortening to grease the pan.

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Mmm, didn’t last long. We didn’t make it for this cake, but for a yummy frosting alternative, check out this recipe for Paleo Chocolate Pudding.

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Sparkle wanted to dress up like a waitress, and served it to me properly.

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Dairy-Free Ranch Dressing, recipe from BB Nutrition Guide

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Dash got excited and put extra maple syrup on it.

We scored with the BB recipe of “Hali’s Favorite Waffles”.

Replaced Oat Flour with a mixture of 2/3 C. Almond and 1/3C. Coconut Flour. Also added Coconut Oil.

Check back for recipes!

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Daddy’s Yummy Peach Smoothie

1 peach, 1-2 carrots, 1 apple, 1 banana, ice, water, a little bit of coconut or almond milk blended.

Comments on: "Food as Medicine. Days 18-25" (4)

  1. Joy Smith said:

    Lots of smiles in those pictures!!! That right there is a great improvement from the frowns and tears from a few weeks ago….love it!!!!

  2. The dominant thought as I read along is that it seems like your family, each of you really, but especially your and your husband, is that you are becoming more of who you are, able to let shine the gifts that you possess. A very warm feeling went along with it.

    • Thanks Heidi, I couldn’t have said it better myself! We are moving past some of the issues that have held us in a circular pattern for some time. It feels good to be making progress.

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