I am a foodie.
I am a herbally-inclined magician.
I am a meditating monkey.
I am into natural, gentle methods of health.
I am into looking and feeling handsome.
Basically, I'm sort of like what my brother calls me, a "hippie". I like to look at it as boho-queerhippie-sheik. Words... even when we produce them ourselves, they are often too light; never fully expressing the dense reality we live in.
What did I do to prepare for top surgery? I did research and I consulted my herbalist friends. Now, many of you reading this actually have access to an herbalist. In most big/medium sized cities in the US there is usually at least 1 herbal practitioner. In my home state of Utah there is one and she is very very good! Utah I know! So, look one up in your area if you're interested. Or, more conveniently, just reference this article.
**Most of these herbs/supplements can be found at a large convenience store, like Safeway, Target etc.
**I am not a certified doctor/medical practitioner. (That being said, Our bodies can be the best doctors.)
Alright, Here is what my herbalist friend recommended:
Begin taking Milk Thistle immediately (one of our best liver tonics, and works best in food or capsule form.) This basically cleanses the liver which helps two fold: for those on Testosterone therapy and for cleansing the toxins accumulated after surgery. Pain meds (Percocet, Codine etc.) will toxify the body, so milk thistle is an excellent cleanser for pain-med damage.
Increase fiber, protein (100g/day), fresh fruits and vegetables, and probiotics
◦ Focus on colorful foods and quality proteins- pastured eggs, poultry, wild fish, nuts
Increase water intake- 3 quarts/day pre and post surgery
◦ Most of us are deficient in zinc. Lots of research shows how Zinc reduces wound
healing time, supports immune function, and helps ward off infection post surgery
◦ Dose : 60 mg of available elemental zinc/day. Amino-chelated is best absorbed or
Zinc sulfate tablets (cheaper) 220 mg, 2X/day. 2 weeks before, 4-6 weeks after
Vitamin C supplement, 4-6 g/day, or eat lots of berries, 2 weeks before, 4-6 weeks
◦ Foods high in Vit C: fresh green peppers, berries, citrus, leafy greens & sprouted
Vitamin A supplement, 10,000 IU/day, 2 weeks before, 4-6 weeks after surgery
◦ reduce amount to 5,000 IU if continuing supplementation after this time frame
◦ Foods high in Vit A: liver, fish liver oils, egg yolks, leafy greens, broccoli, seaweed,
carrots, sweet potatoes, and yellow-orange fruits and vegetables
Magnesium supplement (to lower stress and relax)
|Milk Thistle! Just hanging out, being a helpful herb.|
ALSO (Pro scar tip): Zinc and Vitamin C are known to help minimize scarring!
Increase protein (100g/day) to assist tissue and collagen repair
For at least 6 weeks focus on these foods-
bone broth, shitakes, pastured eggs, wild caught fish, berries, raw green/red peppers, steamed greens, seaweed, soaked sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds, sweet potatoes, fresh juices and smoothies, miso, carrots, broccoli, citrus, and sauerkraut
◦ We want the antioxidants, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Essential Fatty Acids,
B-vitamins, Zinc, minerals, probiotics, protein, and enzymes out of these foods, if
you want to increase healing time and don't want to take supplements, eat these
I personally cut out refined carbs almost entirely post surgery. My body told me No. So I listened. I craved a beer at 3 1/2 weeks post op, but luckily(?) for me the store didn't have gluten-free beer.
|BONE BROTH: highly recommend. Collagen repair, ie. speeds healing time, reduces scars.|
Constipation- side effect from Morphine and other Narcotic Pain medications
Try a gentle laxative like ground Flax seed soaked, oatmeal, prune juice, or soaked
or Marshmallow root powder
Next try an increase in your Magnesium supplement
Next try Smooth Move tea from Traditional Medicinals
Avoid strong laxatives, as they can cause straining
Nausea-side effect from pain killers and trauma from surgery
Ginger or Peppermint tea
Peppermint Spirits tincture (by Herb Pharm at the Coop, very effective)
Cannabis- most effective :) *caution with pain medications
Pro Tip: get a LAXATIVE. For real. I used colace (stool softener) and Smooth Move tea. Do not over do it on the Smooth Move tea, its powerful. Like, don't double bag it.
Us Humans, we don't like pain. It hurts.
I was prescribed Percocet, it worked just fine for Day 1 and 2.
After that I switched to Cannabis.
If you have access to it and it doesn't make you feel super anxious, I recommend it. Especially high quality cannabis oil, and Indica concentrates in capsule form. Trust me, cannabis cures cancer. It aids in nausea, sleep and pain during recovery.
I must say though, it does cause sensory intake to be heightened. You will feel your incisions...so if you aren't into that level of bodily awareness, perhaps reconsider.
TOPICAL TREATMENT (After incisions close up):
Apply an oil infusion of St. John's wort and Calendula with Vitamin E to encourage
healing and help with shooting nerve pain as soon as incisions are closed.
Effective herbs for reducing scarring: Rosehip seed oil, Helichyrisem essential oil
I am personally using a three fold system:
I am using a nerve salve (to regain sensation): St John's Wort, Prickly Bark, Beeswax, Helichyrisem, rosemary, wintergreen.
I was given (as a sponsor type gift) a powerful scar cream that contains: calendula, tea tree, sard(?), carrot, wheat germ, clorophyll, azurite, arnica, gingko, aloe vera, SHARK cartilage, EMU oil, vitamin A, D3, E, F, C, onion extract, epithelial growth factor. Just. Woah.
Target scar strips (silicone) check out Micah's bit about scar strips @ neutrois.me
|3 weeks post op, chock full of herbs^|
Before Leaving the Hospital make sure You know- Checklist:
How to care for your wound at home
What to look for that might need attention right away
Who to call with questions and problems
What your activity limits are
Other restrictions- related to pain medication, diet, etc
What medications to take and when to take them
When you need to come in again
Get cozy, make a fort of pillows, have your herbs ready, and pull out the Sudoku puzzles.
I do hope this was helpful in any way.
Q's? : facebook.com/marvalartking
BEST OF LUCK FELLOW GENDER ADVENTURERS!!!!
with Love, <3
Marval A Rex