I was at a party, chatting away to boys and girls. One kind man offered me a cigarette to which I pleasantly replied: “No thank you. That is your journey…” And it began…”Oh you are one of those yogis, all spiritual, non-sense!” No, I’m not just a yogi, I simply take care of the one thing I truly possess, my body, and advised him to do the same. I also explained that I am a health coach and help people find their balance with food and health, and whatever health concerns he is experiencing it is possible to eliminate them once and for all. The noise went up in the room, friends of Yousef were laughing, pointing fingers that Yousef will never give up the smoke, will never lose the extra-extra weight, and in fact he has to hopelessly live with his gout, as he already had it for 4 years, because he simply doesn’t care. I looked at Yousef, and as he was giggling at his friends’ comments, I was analyzing his puffy dark circles under his eyes (malfunctioning kidneys), swelling around his fingers (water retention, dehydration, too much sodium intake), over-sized waist (visceral fat in the abdominal area) and finally looked deeper in, not visible to the naked eye and I saw it. I saw the little sparkle that whispered into my ear: please help me.
I had to do what I had to do. In order to win people’s attention and have Yousef on my side, I proposed a bet. I am willing to put money on the fact that with my 6 week program we will get him to lose 15kg (at the time he was 115kg) and eventually eliminate gout from his life. His brave loving friend, who had no confidence in Yousef, shook hands with me in front of many witnesses, and we began with AED 1,000 on the line ($270).
To be frank, from the moment I started working with Yousef I forgot about the bet and wholeheartedly focused on providing my client with the right protocol each week. We started off with a detox week, assigned hours for smoking, and lots of water per day. 7 days later, Yousef lost 7kg.
Two weeks in, and Yousef has become my best student following all the instructions without having a single moment of dishonoring our trust for each other. Of course it was difficult nibbling on cucumbers and carrots, when your friends are indulging in Subway sandwiches right in front of you. It is not easy, but it is harder to go through the gout pain at the age of only 30.
Although he was losing the weight, feeling active and positive, the gout was hurting and reminding him that “I ain’t going anywhere!” Yousef went to measure his Uric Acid, and the results were extremely high, even for a gout patient, 12mg/dL. The doctor prescribed him medication to lower this abnormal level, to which I advised not to. “Give me a chance to decrease it naturally, give me another 6-8 weeks.” We had full trust in each other and decided to put the medication aside and continue with our work.
Detox baths with Apple Cider Vinegar, coconut oil pulling, celery juices, cherries as a snack, breathing exercises, meditation techniques…and much more. He did it all and there was not a single day where Yousef lost his determination.
Six weeks in, his weight is at 99kg, so technically I won the bet, but the gout pain was there, in fact it never left, lingering at the background. I was not happy. Is it really irreversible as everyone told me? No, can’t be.
After the 6 weeks, I have put Yousef on the vegan diet, shared my recipe book with him and asked him to forget the chickens for a little while – the only animal product that he was still eating.
Eight weeks in, Yousef went to measure his Uric Acid as the gout pain was still lingering, and to our surprise the results were at 6.9mg/dL, a significant drop, getting in the normal range and no longer being considered as a gout patient. With all the introduced changes in his routine, the gout got the hint there it had no place in his life anymore and was slowly leaving his body, hence the lingering pain all throughout our work together.
When I received the news, I was absolutely overwhelmed with joy and so thankful to all the alternative methods that are out there. It works and I have proved it to myself and to everyone out there that food is medicine, that breathing is essential, that meditation and yoga are most powerful tools for healthy mind and body. It was a package of it all that has helped Yousef to become in charge of his health.
We still have a plan to drop his Uric Acid to 3.5-4mg/dL and his weight to around 84kg, but the major work has been done. Once we have normal results, Yousef can start little by little indulge in foods that he thought he will never be able to eat again. Today, Yousef is at 95kg with clear skin and no puffy circles, he quit the cigarettes; he loves to cook and is rather enthusiastic to exercise to shed off the extra weight.
I write this to remind you all, your body needs your care and attention. A 1% change in your lifestyle may lead to a 99% change in your health. We are here to live life, don’t waste it by smoking, by eating abnormal things perceived as “food” and by taking medication all of which cut your life span by years. Be smart, be kind and Eat The Sun!
“I've been living with gout for the past 4 years and if you know what gout is, you'd know it isn't the most fun illness to be living with. It hurts, a lot, a lot a lot. I weighed at 115kg, smoked around 6-7 packs of cigarettes a week and my only form of exercise was getting in and out of my car. Let's just say I didn't have the most healthiest of lifestyles and it started showing on my mind and body. Then I met Nigora, someone who I was mocking at a party because she was talking about "living healthy" after I offered her a cigarette, yet after all the mockery she insisted. I thought to myself, if this person has faith in myself more than I do then maybe there's something more to it. I agreed to follow her program off 6 weeks after one of my friends bet her it wouldn’t work. After all, she did promise I'd lose 15 kilos and get rid of my gout as well as making me feel better in general. If you're a gout sufferer you'd take that deal instantly. After 6 weeks of managing my smoking, managing my food, resetting my pallet, flushing my body out of the toxins and re-building my weakened body, I landed at 99kg and regular uric acid levels. My smoking has decreased substantially and my body is thanking me in ways I never knew were possible. Now with the help of Nigora, I've planned through my new lifestyle of healthy eating and exercise, to reach 84 kilos and a healthier rate of uric acids in my body. Ironically, I'm glad I offered Nigora that cigarette and made her a part of my "journey".”