Saturday, July 09, 2005

Help for people with Crohn's Disease

I do believe that Hannah Sharpen is a Lifestime Master. She had a very advanced case of Crohn's Disease beginning as a teenager and here is her story of how she was "healed" of this disease by feeding it Shaklee nutrition so that her body could heal itself! Amazing testimony. I realize this is lengthy, but it is so full of great information it is bound to be of encouragement to those who are suffering from this..
Shirley Davis
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Hannah Sharapan's Health Story (Crohn's Disease and How I Was Helped with SHAKLEE Food Supplements)

When I was two years old, I had a bleeding rectal fissure. It reappeared when I was ten, and then in High School it began to give me real problems.
Beginning in Jr. High, it seemed like I was missing a lot of school with rather indistinct symptoms. In High School, my stamina was worse. In my Senior year I became extremely fatigued. I was tested more than once for mono, once for an ulcer, and I saw the doctor regularly. I missed a good portion of the last few months of my Senior year, including the day that I was inducted into the National Honor Society, the day of my Senior Prom. In fact, in Pennsylvania schools were supposed to hold back a student who missed more than 29 days. However, because I had done well, my school simply marked my report card as having missed 29 days.

In addition to the fatigue, by my last few months in High School, I was also vomiting almost daily. I went down to 70 pounds, and I am 5'2". I wonder sometimes if today I would have been wrongly diagnosed as an anorexic?
Unfortunately, I wasn't diagnosed at all--with a guess that maybe it was psychosomatic. I can remember lying in bed, day after day, wondering how I could be doing this to myself. Was I crazy? The next moment my thoughts would go to "what if I had some dread disease and the doctors were missing it?" I had just finished reading Death Be Not Proud, and I worried more.

Somehow, I mustered enough strength for graduation and, thinking that I looked a lot better, took my place in line for the Grand March. Imagine my dismay over how I really looked when a. teacher handed me smelling salts. I never heard a word that went on at Graduation. I went to College in the fall, a little bit stronger and about 8 pounds heavier. I had alternating constipation and diarrhea, with regular rectal bleeding, distention of my abdomen, and not infrequent nausea and vomiting. By mid-term of my Sophomore year, I was falling asleep even sitting up. Then, hospitalized, tests revealed the elusive culprit--Crohn's Disease--a serious intestinal disease.
Having to withdraw from College for the term caused me great agony. I'd be a term behind everyone else. I wouldn't graduate with my friends. Would my boyfriend find someone else?

The disease was so rare in 1962 that I felt stranger yet. To try to build me up, the doctor recommended daily milkshakes, not knowing that most of us with Crohn's Disease can't tolerate milk. I did pretty well for the next few years--in fact, right up through my Wedding Day when I married Allan, the boyfriend whom I had worried would leave me. However, the day after our wedding, I was in extreme pain. After a large injection of Cortisone to try to stop the pain didn't work, we found eventually that I had been perforating. I was so ill for the next seven months that I had to go to stay with my parents who lived two hours away, seeing Allan only on weekends. The next two years I was on a treadmill heading downwards. My diet was now only tea, jelly, and soda crackers, and my doctor didn't believe in supplementation. I had now vomited daily, often more than once a day, for nearly six years. My skin pigmentation lightened, my teeth went yellow, my hair began to gray. If only I had known about SHAKLEE. Allan and I saw each other under such duress that it was tough on our young relationship. I was so weak that my mother was bathing me and brushing my hair.

Although I greatly feared surgery, the doctors decided that it was the only way that would enable me to lead any sort of life. The x-rays showed the disease had spread throughout my intestines; so they said the best that they could do was to remove just the worst parts. Since it wasn't emergency surgery, I convinced them to wait for a few months while I psyched myself up for the surgery. I'd lie in bed seeing myself well and picturing the disease localizing to a point that it could all be removed. It was not until I was in SHAKLEE and learned about visualization techniques that I realized that I'd been using them. I can still see my doctor's beaming face when I awoke, and he said, "Hannah, we got it all. It was localized in just three places!"

Greatly improved by surgery, Allan and I were finally together. During the next six years, I led a relatively normal life, except for occasional implications, lots of fatigue, and picking up many cases of the intestinal flu which could keep me in bed for a month. Being advised not to get pregnant, we adopted Halle, and four years later adopted Danielle. During this time, I had developed some allergy problems and had gotten fibrocystic disease in the breasts (they think as the result of the ACTH that they had me on for the Crohn's). I did become pregnant, though, when Danielle was a small infant.
During the pregnancy I did have some problems--from straining so my cervix dropped so far that I almost lost the baby. After three weeks in bed for that, I then got a rectal abscess, one of the most painful things that I ever went through. Toward the end of the pregnancy, I began to need daily rectal dilations, having to drive 45 minutes each way to the doctor's office. This treatment was so painful that when I'd get up from the table, there would be a ring of perspiration where I had been. Our oldest daughter, Halle, was starting kindergarten, and I had looked forward to walking her to school that first day, but, instead, I was in agony with another impaction. These impactions were a result of a rectal stricture (which is scar tissue) from the Crohn's. The doctors agreed that removal of the scar tissue would just cause new scar tissue to form.

After delivering Ashley, I continued to have rectal dilations weekly for the next six years. Then in 1979 we found SHAKLEE. We were introduced by way of the business opportunity, but we believed that we had to be totally sold on the products. I hoped I would be able to tolerate the supplements, because I couldn't handle any of the ones I had bought at the store. I hoped, also, that the SHAKLEE supplements might give me that sorely-needed energy which I lacked; and perhaps that vitamin-C might reduce my colds. I truly believed that that was the most that vitamins and minerals could do for you; and with even those results I would have been thrilled! Was I ever in for a pleasant surprise when I did get the energy. Plus I gained three hours a day because of needing less sleep. Then my digestion vastly improved. In fact, for the first time in a long while I was really absorbing my food. Since SHAKLEE, I am able to keep my weight with little effort after a lifelong struggle with being way too thin. My allergy symptoms virtually disappeared; and within months so did the cysts. In July1979 I began the SHAKLEE supplements, and July 1979 marks the month of the last of the rectal dilations.

Four years later I went to the doctor and he said that as long as I was there, he wanted to check the stricture. Reluctantly, I agreed. I was shocked! I had only what I would call normal discomfort. The doctor looked at me in disbelief and exclaimed, "Hannah, the stricture is gone!" As he sat down to write on my chart, I can still see him, his head shaking; as he recorded and barely audibly repeated, "The stricture is gone--no more scars!"
Me! He has told me since then that another doctor examining me would say that the examination showed an essentially normal rectum.

He added, "You are a living testimony to your products!"

* * * * *
This is the SHAKLEE Food Supplement program I follow:

I started very slowly, like this:

1st Day--1/2 tablet of Alfalfa at breakfast
2nd Day--1 tablet of Alfalfa at each meal and 1 at bedtime I gradually built up to taking 4 each meal and 4 at bedtime.

After the first day or so when I could feel that I tolerated the Alfalfa well, I added
1 B-Complex at breakfast Anyone with a digestive problem knows that it is a good idea to try one new food at a time, so I suggest the same with supplements.

Based on personal experience and experience in working with others, I do feel that anyone who sticks to working out a program will be able to tolerate all the supplements and feel much better on them. Every person, however, will have to find his/her own rate of adding on other supplements and amounts thereof.

The next day, I increased to
1 B-Complex a meal, and now I eat 2 a meal and 1 at bedtime.

Next came Calcium. Now I eat Calcium Complex Chewables. I eat only about 4-6 a day.

I have read that there is a zinc and Vitamin-C deficiency in Crohn's Disease cases. I eat 4-6 zinc a day and 12 Vitamin-C Sustained Release, divided up over mealtimes and bedtime; I do increase these two supplements if I feel a cold or flu coming on.

Next came the Vitamin-E 400 IU tablets. Vitamin-E is reputed by many nutritionists to break down scar tissue, and based on my personal experience, I have to believe that is true. I eat 6 Vitamin-E tablets daily.

I eat 8 Vita-Lea for Children each day.

I now use a minimum of 3 tablespoons of Instant Protein at breakfast, but, again, gradually I built up to that from a slow beginning. I began mixing
1/4 teaspoon at breakfast, then 1/4 teaspoon per meal, on to 1 teaspoon per meal and then up to 3 tablespoons of Instant Protein at breakfast. Generally I drink my Instant Protein in apple juice or a blend of apple juice along with other juices, such as cranberry or apricot nectar.

I began with Herb-Lax when I started the Alfalfa. If someone has the constipation that I did, that person will often take Herb-Lax initially, too.
More often Crohn's patients suffer from a chronic diarrhea and are concerned with taking too much Herb-Lax. Sometimes they have to experience results before gaining the confidence in the products. I have heard many people say that they felt that Herb-Lax had actually helped them get over diarrhea problems. The way I began with the herbs was to lick a tablet the first night; the next night I broke off a crumb, then subsequently 1/8 of a tablet, then a 1/4, then a 1/2, etc.--cutting off a bit at a time.

When Fiber Wafers came out, I added 1 a day--that seems right for me. When EPA and Beta Carotene came out, I added them, eating 3 of each day.

As far as diet is concerned, once I started to do much better and to feel much better because of the supplements, I became interested more in adhering to sound nutritional ideas. Over a period of time, I found improvement by eliminating red beef, seeds, sugar, and pop. I had gotten off milk years ago. I rarely eat anything fried. Now I eat lots of brown rice, chicken, fresh vegetables, and some fresh fruits and fruit juices (not citrus).

Summary of the SHAKLEE Food Supplements I now take:
After gradual build up and experimentation, my daily regimen is as follows.
These supplements are divided up by taking some four times a day, at meals and at bedtime.

Alfalfa--16 or more Herb-Lax--1 (at bedtime only)
B-Complex--7 Calcium Complex--4 Zinc--6 Vita-C (Sustained Release)--12*
*I add Chewables if I feel a cold or infection coming on)
Vita-E 400IU Tablets--6 Instant Protein--3 or more Tbs (at breakfast)
Vita Lea for Children--8 EPA--3 Beta Carotene--3 Fiber Wafers--1 In closing, let me emphasize the importance of checking in with a client who has Crohn's Disease every two days until you have them on a complete SHAKLEE program. They need constant reinforcement until they get results.

Hannah Sharapan

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