i wish i could bottle this.jpg

I’m not a huge fan of sharing so called ‘miracle cures’ for this ailment and that mainly because I truly believe the old saying ‘one man’s medicine is another’s poison’. Drinking myself silly with green juice in the past has proven this to be the case; a green juice a day did not keep anything away, far from it. Whilst many extol the benefits of knocking back a daily sludge of raw kale, spinach and the like.. it took me years of dutiful juicing to realise that this was actually moving away from good health. Ultimately I found out the hard way that learning how to listen to your body is the most valuable skill you can acquire in order to reach full potential and optimum health…a tough lesson but what a mighty one to learn.

Recently I was diagnosed with a very low white blood cell count. Four consecutive blood counts over the course of a year revealed bizarrely low neutrophils and lymphocytes – both absolutely necessary for fighting off infection in the body. I suffered cold after cold, sinus infections and terrible allergies that would have me waking in the middle of the night, eyes and nose streaming for seemingly no reason. I then developed a nasty skin condition on my face called Seborrheic dermatitis which resulted in angry, red, sore patches around my eyes and down the sides of my nose which eventually started to spread wherever they wanted. In the pictures you see above, the photo on the left was actually taken when things were starting to improve.  Prior to this point I had been from doctor to nutritionist and back again – one armed me with steroidal creams, dandruff shampoos and facial washes to strip the top layer of the skin, pills for this and that – the other with recipes for juices, smoothies, healthy meals and vitamins to up my immunity. Nothing worked and in fact I just got worse despite – as my close family would call it ‘being the healthiest person’ around.

When I asked the doctors what I could do to raise my white blood cells or support my immune deficiency they all said:

‘nothing really….just deal with it, try not to get stressed and eat as well as you can’.

Urm right.

‘Perhaps more yoga and green juice?’

‘Yes that should help’.

‘Health is our natural state and is the end result of living in harmony. Disease is the natural end result of living out of harmony.’

I’m not really one to take things lying down. The very notion of giving another person entire responsibility for one’s health has always been at odds with me…particularly when most Doctors happily separate the mind from the body. That, I don’t get at all. I am a big believer in taking ownership of your own life and health, so I decided that if there were no apparent answers to my health issues, I would have to try to find my own. It took a year of experimenting, mainly because, I believe, learning about our unique patterns and reactions and responses to separate stimuli takes a very long time and all the while our bodies and minds are evolving and in flux. What works one day and for one person will not necessarily work for the next for the next person for a myriad of obvious reasons.

I have realised that in Ayurvedic terms I tend towards a prominence of ‘Vata’ – I’m always the one with an extra layer on and chilly fingers and toes, I can take a lot of heat (just ask my yoga students who are quite often drowning in puddles of sweat while I’m still walking around in an Aaron jumper), I can lose weight very easily, my eyes get quite dry and blurred, without yoga and meditation I have a buzzy/ anxious energy and very often need a lot of grounding – my day to day activities resemble that of a bumble bee (I go to one room for a phone charger – end up in the bathroom cleaning the toilet, go upstairs for a pen come down with a chair, I begin to prepare a clothes wash and half way through find myself replying to emails, I get a message from a friend and two days later remember to reply…then forget, then remember, then forget…..) it goes on! For people like me, raw green juice or any other juice for that matter makes all of these things worse because they are cooling, light, raw foods which feed my cooling raw energy. When I was guzzling this down thinking I was doing the very best thing for my body I was actually exacerbating the problem and taking my body further away from harmony and further towards illness… it just took me a while to put all of this together.

When I started to learn how to give my body what it needed instead of what I thought it needed – things changed quite dramatically. I stopped practicing a full on dynamic yoga practice daily and started to move with less speed and force and with more integrity and ease, I began to eat more grounding foods – root vegetables, soups, curries, fats, herbs and spices which warmed my system and helped me feel full and energised yet very grounded.

I discovered that these types of foods were amazing natural medicines and what follows is my own recipe for a ‘potion’ based on a lot of research and experimentation. All I can tell you is that it works for me, it may not work for you…. but it is all natural and it ‘may’ work for you!

I make a batch every few days and drink a shot every morning. On days when I’ve felt a cold coming on I take the bottle with me wherever I go and drink a shot every hour or near enough. My skin has completely cleared up, my digestion is infinitely better as are my allergies and hay fever. Miraculously on two occasions I have managed to completely halt two heavy colds within 24 hours – the first time I was streaming, sneezing my head off and in such a mess… yet in just a few hours I was through it.

**Just to say – fresh turmeric juice will ruin your juicer and just about anything else it comes into contact with. Make sure you’re not attached to your white surfaces or a pristine juicer and have a few pairs of sturdy rubber gloves. It can get messy and more often than not my fingers look like I have a 60 a day habit but personally I couldn’t care less!

Essential ingredients:
* fresh turmeric root
* fresh ginger
* 2 organic oranges juiced
* 1 organic lemon juiced
* High strength Manuka honey
* Black pepper

Juice everything then add a couple of tablespoons of the highest potency Manuka honey you can find. Keep in a bottle in the fridge and every time you take a shot grind in a teaspoon of black pepper (this activates the curcumin). You’ll also do well to follow your shot with some good fats as this helps the curcumin to be absorbed into the bloodstream through the lymphatic system.

When I’m really struggling with a head cold I’ll also add in some fresh garlic, cayenne pepper and a little warm water and drink as a tea. It is pretty delicious but then again I’m a bit of a freak like that. If you don’t like a little spice forget it, this is not for bland palettes!

There is a wealth of information available on the efficacy of turmeric and its potent anti-inflammatory benefits – do your own research…..but also look beyond what it is your are putting in your body and see what you are putting in your mind. It is all connected more than you may want to admit.

All I can say is I am ecstatic that for now I can dump the meds!

muchlove xx

Sarah Jeffs