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back from the integrative medicine clinic

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Well, yesterday I was at the Block Institute in Evanston, Illinois for an initial evaluation. I was given an exam, consult with a doctor, took about 10 vials of blood to be sent to a lab in California, sent home with a box to send saliva samples out to the same lab, and had a long consult with their dietitian. Whew!

To make a long story short, I was mostly interested in the diet and nutrition portion of the visit. It was mostly what I expected--plant based diet, give up dairy, meat, and concentrate mostly on grains, vegetables, and fruit. Also, no refined sugars. This will be a big lifestyle change for me and I am going to work towards that--I may never get it perfect, but I can do better.

Additionally there is a list of supplements (theirs) that they recommended for me. I am still undecided about that--I looked at the bottles of what I've been taking on my own, and I'm pretty close to being there with what I'm taking now. I would just need a few alterations, and would save a ton of money every month over purchasing their stuff.

One thing that really woke me up with my conversation with the dietitian was when he said that another great reason to change my diet was that cancer aside, heart disease is the number 1 killer of women and, with that just around the corner age-wise, I need to be aware that it is also a threat and being thinnner, leaner, and armed with a better diet would make a big difference.

Like I say, I'm going to try--I'm not a big meat eater as it is, but never is a tough assignment right now for me. Baby steps--this does not have to be a cold turkey thing like smoking was, but I am going to work towards a much better diet, and hopefully those extra pounds will go away with the new lifestyle too.

More info as I get it......

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Thank you for keeping us informed. I'd be interested in the list of supplements/herbs they gave you if it's not too overwhelming to list. I agree with you about money - my herbologist recommends his stuff, but he tells me when I can get the equivilent at Vitamin Shoppe or online cheaper. Take care.

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Thanks for posting about your trip to the Bloch Center! The diet/nutrition info you got is similar to mine -- eat tons of veggies and whole grains -- and 1-2 servings of fruit a day (as "dessert" after meals) although he did tell me not to cut out meat all together, he said he wanted to make sure I got adequate protien and he didn't want it ALL coming from soy. He wanted me to have protien in my lunch and dinner each day, so eating turkey or chicken in a meal once or twice a week was ok, along with salmon twice a week. There have been so many positive reports coming out about the health benefits of salmon (only the "wild alaskan" variety) it seems silly to cut it out! I was also told to cut out dairy, or at least limit it to once or twice a week -- and to stick with organic dairy (like Stonyfield Farm Organic Yogurt). "Eden" brand makes a great Soy&Rice milk that you can use in place of milk and I think it's great!

I don't think it will be as hard to make the transition as you think, and it gets easier as you go along and get more creative with your meals. (If you need any assistance getting started, let me know, I've got a TON of easy recipes) Also, you will DEFINETELY lose weight when you alter your diet, I feel like I eat all day long and I haven't gained a pound -- I eat A LOT, but everything I eat is healthy, healthy, healthy, and that stuff just doesn't put weight on you!

As far as the supplements, if you are taking a similar protocol now, it seems silly to switch to their particular brand if you are happy with the brand you take now! I spent $295 last month purchasing the supplements from the Integrative Medical Center I went to, and the nutritionist from my regular hospital researched the makers of those particular supplements for me and said they were all reputable companies, so I will probably stick with them, but I am going to search GNC and some other local supplement stores and see if I can find that same brand cheaper than the Integrative Center charges for them.

Overall, it sounds like you had a very productive visit, and he is right -- cancer aside, it is never too soon to change our lifestyle for the better! :wink:

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Yes, it was a productive visit and I'm going to do this transformation a little at a time. Went to some health food stores today and checked out the health food section of the grocery store. Bought some soy milk and will try it on cereal to start out. I was really surprised at the nice variety of foods that the stores around here had on hand. That's hopeful.

The supplements they want me to take are:

Calcium D'Glaurate

Anti-Oxidant==many ingredients but nothing we haven't seen before

Multi-Vitamin--same thing--lots of ingredients, nothing unusual

Omega 2 fish oils--I did buy some of these at the health food store today, I hadn't been taking them before.

A powder called Turbo Greens--it's a green foods supplement--I'm already taking one.

Whey berry protein powder--to add protein to my diet, which is the hardest nutrient for a vegetarian to get.

This was all going to be about $400.00 /month. I'm spending about $350 a month less than that buying at the local health food store. The ingredients on my bottles are the same as theirs--I just can't see spending that kind of money on their private label stuff.

But, it was a great dr visit and dietary consult and I did get reassurrance that I'm taking the right supplements. The diet transformation will definately take some work, but I can do it.....

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Very interesting thread here ladies . . .

Hebbie--What is your take on the farm raised salmon? Not at all? Never? I know the wild is much better, but much more expensive.

My supplements come from the local health food store. I am taking flax oil capsules, selenium, CO Q10, a multi vitamin, and calcium.

Prescriptions include nexium, femara (for the breast cancer), Zoloft (MY FAVORITE), and allegra (DARN nj ALLERGIES)

Through the years I have decided that everyone needs to find their individual comfort zone with this. I chose to go the therapist-massage therapist route and feel much better physically and emotionally then I did before.

My eating has improved, but there is a whole lot of room for improvement. I quit smoking long time ago, quit drinking (a no-no for the breast cancer), and can't quite give up on that chocolate . . .

especially in June when I am closing out the year


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Chloesmom -- Is it Omega 2 oil or Omega 3? I have only heard of Omega 3 and Omega 6. Most people get WAY too much of the Omega 6 and are deficient in Omega 3 -- you can get you Omega 3 from a fish oil supplement (but need a reputable brand or you can get the same toxins/mercury that you can get from fish). For a more natural approach, you can get lots of Omega 3's from cold-water fish like Salmon and also from Flax Seeds and Walnuts. I usually mix chopped walnuts into my oatmeal each morning, and put ground flax seed meal on my yogurt.

As far as finding great health foods, do you have a local "Whole Foods Market" near you? They have EVERYTHING -- organic fruits/veggies, dairy, a great fish department, supplements.....I OBSESSED WITH THAT STORE!!! Most girls spend their money on clothes? Not me....I spend all my money at the food store. How embarresing.... :oops:

Gail -- my take on farm raised salmon? Almost never eat the stuff if I can help it (occasionally I'll order salmon in a restaurant like "Friday's" and I KNOW they aren't shelling out the big bucks to serve wild salmon....). If I am buying it myself, I bite the bullet and pay the price for the Wild Alaskan. There have been too many reports in the last year or two about the dangers of mercury and other toxins in the farm raised fish/Atlantic salmon for me to feel comfortable eating it on a regular basis -- and I LOVE my salmon! :wink:

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My mistake--it was a typo--I meant to say Omega 3 oils. I bought the supplement yesterday at GNC. I have not been to a Whole Foods yet, we don't have one here in our city, but there are a few nearby--I just need to take a couple of hours to go and shop and come home. No big deal--we also have Trader Joe's stores nearby--they're pretty neat.

Like I said, I'm going to do all this with some comfort level built in. I did go out with my family for a lunch/brunch and had grilled chicken, carrots, corn and dumplings. Now I know that wasn't great but it does beat the fried chicken and mashed potatoes that was the special today and it was better than the ham, eggs, and hash brown cassarole that my family had.

I have a fed ex box here with two test tubes that I'm supposed to spit in tonight and tomorrow first thing in the morning and send off to that lab in Calilfornia. Supposed to measure melatonin levels and something else. I'm thinking that melatonin may be the next supplement--that's ok.

Gail--my onc says that I only need to be on tamoxifen for a few more months. She wants me to switch to Arimidex, but only does it when she's sure her patients are post-menopausal and her cut off point is 2 years without a period. I'm about 5 months from that. I'm hoping that the arimidex will be easier to handle and then that chance of uterine cancer will be greatly reduced, thus eliminating one dr appt a year (that ultrasound that I have to get midway between my yearly pap and exam). That's a good thing.

Oh also have to get into that flax thing--I might just buy that rather than take another supplement and sprinkle it on cereal or salad or something, I don't know.....always something more once you get started, you know. But, if we can have the same good results from all of this extra effort, it is so worth the effort, don't you think?

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Got any good salmon recipes. I am going to have to drive to Dallas to Whole Foods. The Salmon we get here in my town stinks, it makes me sick to my stomach to smell it! The salmon from Whole Foods is fresh, oderless, and tasty! I am growing a garden and it has just gone nuts! All organic. Very cost effecient!

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Do I have any good salmon recipes??? Don't make me laugh! :lol:

The easiest way to make it, and the way I do most often, is to just put the salmon on some aluminum foil......sprinkle on a heavy coating of dill weed spice, wrap loosly in the foil, and bake in the oven at around 325-350 for 20-30 minutes, depending on the thickness of the slice ( I usually only make a small piece for myself -- my family won't touch it!). Serve it with a baked sweet potato and steamed broccoli and you are good to go!

Sometimes I will cook it plain outside on the grill with some grilled asparagus on the side. Or, you could probably put some sort of teriaki glaze on it too -- I've had teriaki salmon a few times in restaurants, just haven't tried to make it myself.

Now, what I make last week for a BBQ was GREAT -- I made a homemade pasta caesar salmon salad -- whole wheat penne pasta, an all natural caesar dressing (from Whole Foods), romaine lettuce, and some pre-cooked (and cooled) salmon that I shredded up. It was so good!

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Hey there,

Just catching up on posts and found this. Didnt know you were going deep into this. Sounds good to me. My dad lost some weight when he started, and hes trying to put it back on so dont think this is great for him. Sounds pretty good for you though. Good point about the heart disease too. I read that a while back, it is a very important thing to focus on. No one really thinks about women having it. Thanks for the info.

Oh yea, I sent you a PM, did you get it???


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