Rose Byrd

IN HER OWN WORDS

I learned about the Wellness Forum and Dr. Pam Popper at about the same time I was being diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. At that time I was having pain in my hands, and my arms and my hands were swelling. Sometimes I could barely move my fingers, and a couple of times I couldn’t even get dressed for work.

I went to my family doctor, who referred me to an arthritis center where I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. I was told to take methotrexate, which is a pretty serious drug; it’s often used for cancer patients.   I was concerned about the side effects, but the people at the center just kept telling me that everything was going to be ok, that lots of patients take this drug.

But they were also telling me I would have to take a flu shot because the drug would affect my immune system. This made me even more concerned. The nurse at the center just told me to think about it and decide what I wanted to do.

As luck would have it, at that time I found out about The Wellness Forum, attended a dinner and decided to become a member. I started attending classes and also joined the Physicians’ Committee for Responsible Medicine to learn everything I could about diet. I eliminated dairy, reduced meat consumption to only a couple of times per week, and started eating lots of vegetables, rice, beans, and fruit.

Since joining The Wellness Forum, I haven’t had any serious issues; once in a while I feel a little pain but nothing that keeps me from doing anything I want to do. I used to be really stiff when I’d been driving for a while or went to a movie. One time, a few weeks after I changed my diet I went to a movie and I just got right up and I walked right down the stairs and I just thought wow, I didn’t even have trouble doing that. That was pretty amazing.

I no longer get headaches – I used to take Alleve two or three times per week, but I can’t even remember the last time I had a headache. Although I wasn’t planning to, I lost 30 pounds – I think that’s just what happens when you start taking the bad things out of your diet. I had a few other health issues, such as low iron levels, which I was able to resolve with Dr. Pam’s help.

I went back to the doctor a few times for blood tests and then decided not to go back. I remember asking my doctor if there was anything besides the drugs I could do for my condition, and he said there wasn’t anything. He just encouraged me to take the drugs and told me everyone did and they were just fine.   There was no sense in going back since I was not going to do anything he told me anyway.

I am so glad I decided not to take the drugs; I changed my diet, which not only improved the arthritis, but improved my weight and overall health too.