I'm not talking about the empty fat or calories that you get from crisps. I'm talking about Medium Chain Triglycerides. What this is is fats that we don't necessarily need to take digestive enzymes for, and also boosts our immune system. While taking MCT, it also helps absorb calcium and magnesium, and also the absorption of amino acids. These come from coconut oil or coconuts itself, butter, whole milk, or you can get MCT over the counter as a supplement.
Be careful when consuming MCT while having Diabetes as it can cause ketones to build up in the body
When I see a sick PWCF, they look grey. Their skin is lifeless and dry. Their eyes are sunken. Usually this is when they are in hospital eating crap hospital food.
Foods such as avocados, oily fish (mackerel, salmon, sardines), flax seeds, chia seeds, nuts are high in good fats and omega 3. Be careful with eating too much of it as it can cause stomach upsets.
Why do we need this? CF creates a lot of inflammation in nearly every organ. I feel we are in a state of chronic inflammation. Coughing creates more inflammation, and so does phlegm. When the blood gets too hot, it has to escape somehow. It usually escapes from the weakest point, and in our case, the lungs. For people with skin conditions it shows up as psoriasis, eczema or a rash. I know if my body has had too much inflammatory foods of external conditions (heat, Air Conditioning, Flights) I will cough up blood.
All the time I was growing up it was about going on different meds to try bring down inflammation. Singular, steroids, inhalers etc.Long term use of drugs actually causes inflammation. So like the founders of medicine once said, "let thy medicine be thy food".
What foods are good for reducing inflammation?
Turmeric (active ingredient is curcumin) garlic, red onion, ginger, black pepper. Using these regularly will help reduce the inflammation. From a Chinese Medicine point of view, eating Yin foods such as:
- green tea
- all seaweed
- goats milk/yoghurt/cheese
- alfalfa sprouts
- bok choy
- banana (not too much of these as they are also a damp food)
- water melon
- all citrus fruits.
When I fly a lot, I drink at least 1 litre right before I get on the plane. Chronic dehydration is something that a lot of people, not just PWCF, suffer from daily. They have dry stools, dry skin, and dry hair. This also refers back to the Yin deficiency.
I drink 2 litres of water a day, and I will start my day off with the juice of 1 lemon/lime. This helps with digestion as well. You know when you have something sour in your mouth and more saliva is produced. This is digestive enzymes producing to help break down whatever it is. Citrus fruits are also very Alkaline. I will talk more about Alkaline foods in the next topic.
I drink about 3 cups of tea a day, and one herbal tea, so this is about another litre of water. I don't drink any sugary drinks or cordials as they either have sugar or sweeteners in them which is highly inflammatory.
Stress causes acid and inflammation, certain foods and drinks cause acid to form which causes inflammation. So how do you know if you are eating the correct foods. Look at the table below to see which is which.
The ratio of alkaline to acidic should be as close to 80:20. A lot of problems are caused by being in a chronic state of acidosis.
This is questionable but I have been taking it for a few months and my lung function has gone up from 3 months ago. So I can't say if it was the serrapeptase or from other circumstances.
Serrapeptase is a chemical taken from the silkworm. The silkworm eats away at the bad tissue but leaves the healthy tissue. So by taking this, it should eat away at scar tissue which would be brilliant for chronic bronchitis, any chronic pain, and fibrosis.
If you have bleeds then be careful. It can disrupt the bloods clotting, so just beware.
Now this is where I start to get into one of the main reasons as to why I am doing as well as I am doing. I feel like a broken record talking about this subject but thats how strongly i feel.
If you are starting out exercising in your 20s, it is possibly too late as you have probably been on IVs and several hospital visits. Meaning there will be scar tissue. BUT its never too late to start. You will still get benefits from exercising. My point here is that you have to start young. You have to keep mucus clear from day 1. The longest that i have went without running was 5 months due to an injury. I did other exercises but it wasn't running. So i still kept myself clear.
I try to run most days during the weak and if i don't, i will do some sort of exercise. I know myself how much i need to do and when I need to do it. I don't do any other forms of physio as I don't have enough mucus to clear and i need a more vigorous form of airway clearance. IE running.
For parents with young children with CF, please start doing aerobic activity, preferably running.
My typical week would be around 20-30 miles a week of running. I do weights as well but thats to enhance my running rather then trying to get up mucus. I run anywhere from 5-10 miles in a day. 5 miles could range from 30 minutes to 40 minutes and my 10 milers would range from 60-75mins.
I do interval work as well as this works different levels of my lungs. I find i cough up more phlegm.
There is no real science in how much I do. you just need to get out there and run for whatever time you want or need.
The younger you start the better it will be, but too much can cause more upper respiratory inflammation