“Seronegative spondyloarthropathy” sounded scary to me!

Rachna Chhachhi with Sanjiv Sharma
Rachna Chhachhi with Sanjiv Sharma

Sanjiv Sharma, TV Producer, Content Specialist, Ad Film maker

“Somewhere in the last quarter of 2014, I started developing a severe lower back pain.   The first diagnosis suggested a problem in the L4 / L5 Vertebrae.  No 7 KM brisk walks, no weights is what the doctors pronounced. For someone who clocked 50 Kilometres a week that could be a death knell. As we kept discovering, the reason for the pain was finally identified as “sacroiliitis” or “seronegative spondyloarthropathy”.  Sounded scary to me.

Around that time Rachna and I were connected by a common friend for a reason that had nothing to do with my problem.  This gave me an opportunity to learn more about Rachna and what she does. Around that time Rachna was also launching her book “Restore” where focusses on “healthy living” and “eating right”.

From the Book and from our conversations I figured that Rachna was making complete sense.  Inflammation was the major cause of many of the disorders we face and eating a healthy anti-inflammatory diet seemed like a logical solution.  Besides the case studies in the book, Rachna had clawed her way back from a debilitating disease by healthy living and eating right.

The diet itself involves no starvation.  Based on your blood reports, age and gender, Rachna customises your chart that works for your system.  The foods I eat are tasty.  I eat enough to feel “full” and one year later not only I am working towards my “sacroiliitis” but as a bonus I’ve managed to battle obesity.  12 Kilos lighter than when I started, I am healthier on many counts.

Many of us are committed to “effort” and not to the “outcome”.  Our gadgets are clocking how many kilometres we’ve done or how many hours we spent in the gym, but what about the outcome?  To me this is a “jump start” into a virtuous cycle and great results are the best motivator to ensure you stay on track.

What Rachna is propagating is not different from what wise men in the past have already told us.  It’s upto us whether we want to pay heed to that wisdom or are determined to get our value back from Medical Insurance companies.”

Control inflammation, reduce cancer recurrence

“I accidentally found out that my ESR level was high, instead of my IGF-1 level. ..meaning I had high inflammation. I began looking desperately for a good Nutritionist and thankfully stumbled upon my very reliable Rachna,” writes Manisha Koirala, on her blog.
Manisha came to me after successfully combating her ovarian cancer with the focus on reducing inflammation and hence avoiding a cancer recurrence. She had been told by doctors that her chances of recurrence of cancer within the first three years were 90%. I came into her life after she came back from Sloan-Kettering, cured of cancer but determined to avoid recurrence. I worked with her in my capacity as a healer to reduce inflammation and chances of recurrence, and I saw that she followed through and nourished not just her body, but her mind as well.  the steps and the  treatment that followed has been wonderfully captured in the Q&A below between Manisha and me, and is also available on her website.
Isn’t meeting amazing people a part of life. I am blessed to have met some really amazing people in this journey of life. Rachna has cured hundreds of people suffering where medical science offers no treatment except to suppress the disease. Rachna helps patients go to the cause and root the disease out.

I am sharing my amazing Q&A session with Rachna.

1) What’s the real reason behind so many lifestyle diseases cropping up?
Rachna Says: “80% of lifestyle diseases are caused by an inflammatory lifestyle, including 70% of all cancers which are lifestyle related. We’re seeing almost an epidemic proportion of people being hit by disease and I myself get people as young as 18-19 years suffering from disorders caused by their lifestyle.”

2) Is there a damage control strategy or once you get the disease, like you adopted with yourself, or people have to live with it till you are alive?
Rachna Says: “Of course there is. Not only is there damage control but you can reverse the disease itself and live healthier than you ever lived. But that requires major changes in your eating, living and exercise habits, so a lot of people prefer popping allopathic pills that suppress the symptoms of the disease, thereby causing long term side effects of medicines that can be irreversible sometimes. I suffered these and was bed ridden, so I had the motivation to reverse my disease, get certified to help others, just like you are doing. People like us who suffer, have a very high level of commitment towards disease reversal because they have taken the tough path.”

3) What are the 5 things you would tell a person with an inflammatory condition?

Rachna Suggests:

  • Eat 50-60% raw foods. Wash them well. Customise these raw foods to your condition by consulting with a nutrition expert.
  • Do pranayamas. Consult with an expert as all pranayamas are not for all diseases, some can actually aggravate a condition. Do the pranayama best for your issue, do it every day, and oxygenate your body. Cancer cells cannot survive in an oxygenated body. Oxygenation of the brain cells makes them sharp, reversing memory loss.
  • Eat your good fats raw. Good fats decrease inflammation. Consume nuts, seeds, extra virgin oils raw. Good fats cut bad fats, sharpen the brain and memory, reduce stress and depression.
  • Take vitamins & minerals supplements. Depending on your health issue, you should consume supplements that can hasten the process of healing. We live in a world of anti-nutrients: these being stress, pollution, pesticides, less sleep. This makes absorption of nutrients from food less and repair of the body’s cells cannot happen in a low nutrient environment. Now there are so many studies that have proven that vitamin C lowers blood pressure and pain, vitamin B reverses memory loss, minerals and enzymes aid the process of recovery and probiotic supplements heal a compromised stomach lining destroyed by junk food and medicines. But don’t take supplements without consulting a nutrition expert. There are enough cases of non nutrition health experts (including some doctors) prescribing vitamins wrongly, that have led to toxicity.
  • Sleep 8 hours a day. Every day. It cuts the risk of ageing, heart disease, pain issues, type 2 diabetes and memory related decline.

Healing plan review

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Parul Thukral today after overcoming stage 3 breast cancer

At 28, she fought stage 3 breast cancer within 10 months

Parul Thukral was diagnosed with breast cancer on August 11, 2017. She got married in December 2015. Since she is also BRCA 1 positive, she and her husband decided not to have kids in the future and focus on Parul’s health as well as reduce the risk of recurrence. After diagnosis, Parul underwent 12 weekly cycles of chemotherapy followed by another 4 fortnightly cycles of Adriamycin. Thereafter,  she underwent surgery in Mid-January 2018 followed with 25 radiotherapy sessions over a period of 5 weeks (5 days a week for 5 weeks).

At this point, after the 12 cycles of chemotherapy, Parul’s husband sent me an email on December 12, 2017. He gave me a brief case history and requested for nutritional and holistic treatment to help her with withstand chemotherapy better, reduce side effects and avoid recurrence of cancer, which was a big fear since she is BRCA1 positive. Her mother had also had cancer recurrences and Parul had grown up seeing her mother struggle with her cancers.Unfortunately, the normal treatment when patients undergoing chemotherapy that doctors give, their advice is limited to eat protein which translates to telling patients to eat paneer and drink milk, which itself is detrimental to the cancer patient’s health as milk feeds cancer cells and can make the cancer more aggressive as well as increase chances of recurrence especially if it’s a hormonal cancer.  I understand the logic behind the doctors prescribing protein, as chemotherapy and the cancer itself causes the extreme and chronic fatigue and muscle wasting, but not all proteins are created equal and some can hinder the healing journey.

Hence, both the husband and wife were struggling with trying to combat chronic fatigue and muscle wasting with paneer and eggs and yoghurt and focusing on lentils and pulses for their protein intake. I always ask for the daily food routine when anybody signs up with me so that I can understand the level of aggression required to detoxify and rebuild a person.

My initial few weeks with Parul were tough. Parul  was scared, had undergone so much trauma since childhood and was beginning to see cancer recurrences as her fate just like she had seen with her mother. Hence, the first three reviews went into helping her understand why it was important for her to keep the protocol of the charts that I was giving her and how each element was connected the other because we were looking at Parul not as “cancer” but as the person with the strength to overcome cancer. I was not treating cancer, I was treating Parul. Parul the person is a strong woman but whose  emotional stability had been shaken by her own diagnosis. She had to overcome the disease and rebuilt her immune system by repairing it at a time when she was in extreme pain. This environment is provided by the right balance of, oxygenation and emotional well-being and is not just food. With her husband being her emotional strength, it was like Shagun ( her husband) and I working as a team while she was in and out of hospital, in order to ensure that we accelerated her recovery rate, increased her  immunity and decreased her anxiety and pessimism for overcoming her cancer.

I remember my last line to Shagun on January 2, 2018 when he and I had fixed up the first consult to begin Parul’s healing journey:

Here’s dedicating 2018 to your wife’s healing.

And  on Dussehra, Parul had conquered not just her cancer but also her emotional turbulence and is back with a bang being the strong woman she is. Her reports are absolutely normal, her cancer markers and inflammation markers are in range and she is dedicated towards continuing down this path of increasing immunity so that she can always stay healthy and avoid recurrence. It is rare to see such quick recovery from  aggressive chemotherapy, surgery and radiation and still have a good immune system with   in range inflammation markers in such a short period of time. In just 10 months, Parul and Shagun worked tirelessly towards reducing the side effects of chemotherapy, surgery and radiation so that gets her health and quality of life back via high energy and good health. And she did. Here is her account, in her own words:

My journey started when I turned 7. I was too young to understand what all this means when my mom was diagnosed with stage 1 breast cancer. However, due to financial constraints, Dad took her to AIIMS and my mother underwent mastectomy. Since then, after every 5 years, she got cancer either in the breast or ovaries. In her entire life, she just had 6 chemotherapies because she was diagnosed either at stage 0 or stage 1. All this happened till the age of 45. My mother went to fight her ill health till the age of 58 when I got married.

Life was getting better for both me and my parents but things were planned otherwise. Just after a year of my marriage, my mom was diagnosed with Brain Tumour and chronic liver failure. At almost the same time, at the age of 28, I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer which was a locally advanced metastatic cancer.

It seemed that the end was near, everything in life was getting worse and only one thing was going on in my mind – WHY ME? I was really scared to know that I will be having 16 chemotherapy sessions followed by mastectomy and radiotherapy sessions for almost five weeks considering that the treatment severely affects your liver, kidney & immunity in general. However, my husband motivated me to get the treatment and gave me the confidence that this is the first & last treatment you are having in your life. You will always stay healthy now onwards. Our family & friends were always there to support. But I was facing many issues – I was mentally broken, had anal fissures & unending nausea.

 

I was really concerned about the side effects of chemotherapy & radiotherapy and kept talking to my husband about it. During my last chemo, when my husband was sitting besides me in the hospital, he started reading one magazine and he got to know about Rachna. We got to know that she can help to reverse the side effects of chemo & assured us that there would be no recurrence if we follow her prescribed routine. My husband contacted Rachna and then we had a Skype call with her. In the very first call, she gave me all the confidence that she will help me recover & we should stop fearing recurrence if we are ready to change our food habits.

Movietime few days after 4th chemo Sep end
Waiting to catch a movie after the chemos were over, and when my immune system started improving

A few days later, my Mom was losing out and was surviving only on ventilator. The doctors mentioned that she may not live long enough. I, like every daughter, am very close to my Mom and I used to visit her after my radiotherapy sessions. By the time my radio therapy sessions almost got over, my mother passed away. I was broken but again when you have the best husband in the world who assures you that he will care for you like your own mother then you stay optimistic about life. I realised if God has given me the pain then he has also given me people in life who are always ready to take you out of that situation. Rachna has been of immense help and she came just at the right time when I needed her the most. I am thankful to her for showing me the bright side always!

Now after 10 months of the holistic treatment, I feel energetic & very positive about life. I believe my Mom is there with God & constantly praying for me & I am damn sure that best is yet to come. Also, I am sure nothing wrong can happen because I am giving best to my body and mind through Yoga & nutrition prescribed by Rachna.

Initially, when Rachna sent me the first chart, I felt a bit overwhelmed. I was just undergoing all the tiring treatments  with doctors and chemotherapy had sucked all the energy out of me. I would read what was written, absorb only some of it and follow less than what I absorbed. Rachna explained to me that chronic fatigue and brain fog are common side effects of chemotherapy. There were times I followed 40%, which then became 70%. Then finally, one day, Rachna gave me a long monologue on getting a hold of myself. It was a stern Skype conversation where I felt I was standing in front of my school principal and had been a naughty girl. She got me back on track. Following the chart in parts was not an option, she told me. Everything works in combination with others whether it was the food, the supplements  she gave me, or the gentle yoga or pranayama. The pranayama frankly, came onto my daily habits list the last because it was quite exhausting and boring to do. But as I began to see the benefits, my recovery became faster and my energy became higher, I finally gave in and started enjoying the 15 minutes I had to give to it every single day.

Parul Thukral today after overcoming stage 3 breast cancer
And here I am today, fully recovered, ready to share my journey, and ready to enjoy life and love.

A large part of my quick recovery from such aggressive cancer is because along with conventional treatments, I ensured that I kept myself strong mentally and nourished myself physically. Because of Rachna’ diet regime, pranayama and exercises, my immune system stayed stronger and my muscle wasting and malnutrition, which is a common side effect of chemotherapy (as Rachna told me) were minimal. God has shown me the path to meet Rachna & her words of assurance are enough for me to think positive & be happy about the fact that my health & immunity is improving day by day. Today, I’m not just working towards staying healthy, I am focused on a higher quality of life and beating any chance of recurrence.

You can’t help it when you have bad genes but you can definitely do things that can boost your immunity and fight against the bad genes in your body. I am just following Rachna’s instructions to have that kind of immunity. I am very hopeful and positive about life because that thinking definitely attracts positive things. My own sister is hearing impaired by birth and life has been very difficult for her and all of us around but if she can stay happy and make most of it then…

WHY NOT ME.

Parul Thukral, 29 years, Breast Cancer Survivor & Winner

 

Become a Certified Holistic Health Coach

Empower YourselfIn 2008, I had healed myself from rheumatoid arthritis and was seeking to help others. For 11 years, I strived across 22 countries. But at a one-on-one level, despite taking on more cases, conducting workshops, being a speaker at public forums, I was reaching out to very few people and there were too many more out there who were suffering.

So I developed the Holistic Health Coach Certification Program to empower others and build my own Healer Network with my certified coaches, to heal others.

The single-minded purpose of this network is to heal as many as we can collectively, holding each other’s hand in the process so we are there to motivate and help each other grow while increasing the number of happier, healthier people globally.

You will also do this in your own time, from home. You can just learn like I did, and do it. I am building a community of health coaches across the world who can make the world a healthier place. And you can be an entrepreneur, a healer and the person who can reduce suffering, as part of this, while you earn from home.

The course fees is Rs 25,000/USD 400 and the duration is 6-8 weeks. The format of learning is via Videos, written content and Research Papers via clinical studies as reference material. All the rich material provided can also be obtained as a book once the course is finished (at a cost), or you could download material as and when you read the same (recommended). I’m taking on those who will not only get certified but will also be on my website to contact, as my fellow coaches, for those seeking help/coaching in various parts of the world.

Why is my program different?

  1. Every health coaching program focuses on theory and theoretical knowledge as well as clinical studies. My program focuses on  theory, theoretical knowledge, clinical studies, research papers, meal plans, my practical experience with patients of different kinds of health conditions and the rich learnings during so many years of  my practice incorporated as part of this course and your learning. so you do not get only the bookish knowledge available in a college or university, you also get learnings from practical experience and problems faced and resolved during that experience.
  2. My program is not “robotic” and I will be personally assessing the modules and final exam papers of each coach unlike other online programs where the process is automated and often yields a dispassionate “one size fits all” results. The course is focused on treatment, quality of life of those we treat and longevity.
  3. Once you get certified, we have a support group for all the healers who will have their own forum/webinars to set up business, share difficulties as well as success stories and I promote these success stories on my website and on my social media so that my certified coaches can get more clients.

Both men and women and other genders are welcome to apply. However, for women looking at making a fresh career for themselves as entrepreneurs from a corporate/ other career or homemakers, fees can be paid in two instalments as a special gesture to help them set up their own business.

The course structure is below:
  1. Understanding diseases – Video
    • How diseases take root
    • The basic principles towards keeping disease away
    • Quiz 1
  1. Understanding Nutrition – Video
    • What nutrients are essential for good health
    • Research Papers
    • Life stage based nutrition needs
    • How to plan your meals nutritionally
    • Recipes to help you
    • Quiz 1, 2, 3
  2. Self nurturing – Video
    • Why self nurturing is important for everyone’s health
    • What are the ways we can self-nurture
    • Self nurturing techniques for each family member
    • Research Papers
  3. Why exercise is important – Video
    • What are the right exercises for each family member
    • Research Papers
    • Quiz 4
  4. Supplementation – Video
    • Do we need supplements despite a nutritious diet?
    • Conditions where supplements are important and how  should you take them
    • Research Papers
  5. A sample meal & exercise plan for the family
    • Quiz 5
  6. The case for Organic NEW ADDITION!
    • Quiz 6
  7. Helping Clients heal from these – Video NEW ADDITION!
    •  Cardiovascular disease
    • Type II diabetes
    • Autoimmune conditions
    • Cancer
    • Quiz 7
  8. Working with RachnaRestores NEW ADDITION!
    • How to be a good coach
    • Your daily practice
  9. Final Exam Paper
  10. Certification

DURATION:

6 – 8 weeks (password expires after 8 weeks, so this is a time-bound course)

I hope to help you start your journey via healing people, just like I’m doing. I hope you will hold my hand in this goal, to extract everyone’s inner strength and defy disease, and help those suffering come out of their suffering.

Looking forward to welcoming you as a fellow healer, who goes beyond conventional treatments to help those around us.

To sign up, click on the link below and fill up the form, and pay via bank transfer (link below).

SIGN UP

Pay by Bank Transfer

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At 60, I have begun reversing my diabetes, cholesterol and hypertension

Hello,

I am Nalini, a Sri Lankan living in London. When I first heard of Rachna through my sister I was into my 12th year as a high-risk patient in my GP’s list, taking high doses of medication for diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol amongst other aches and pains. All these ailments started after my laminectomy operation and thereafter thyroidectomy operation. I wrote to her from my London home:

Please let me know if you think your treatment process can reverse my diabetes or other 2 diseases. I take the below tablets daily for my ailments.
For High Blood pressure: Losartan 100 MG in the morning
                                          Lercanidipine HCI 20 mg in the night
                                          Doxazosin 4mg in the night
For Diabetes:                     Metformin 500 – 3 for a day (1 in the morning, 2 in the night)
                                          Linagliptin 5 mg in the night
Cholesterol:                       Simvastatin 20 mg in the night
I also take aspirin 75 Mg one  in the night and levothyroxine 50 mg 1 daily as my thyroid gland has been removed.

These pills had side effects too. My digestion became weak and I was not absorbing nutrients, leading to lower immunity and higher risk of infections at my age.

When I read about Rachna and her own life story, I took an instant liking to Rachna’s holistic healing process. Her logic made complete sense. I decided to contact her. In reply to my email she said my condition can be reversed and ordered about 12 tests. All my reports were pretty bad.

On seeing my test results Rachna customised my diet, my nutritional intake and my lifestyle. I was a very heavy rice eater and all these changed when she put me on her strict diet plan. First week was very difficult and I had nausea, was lethargic and bloated. I had no real appetite. But from the second week onwards, my body got used to my new diet and nutrition. It was hard, but I followed the diet, nutritions, exercises and Pranayama to the letter with sheer determination. I wasn’t a quitter and I believed this would work.

In the 3rd week, my sugar level came down dramatically and metformins were cut down to half. I was eating well but only what was in Rachna’s list. We had our fortnightly skype sessions and Rachna was very understanding and always at hand to guide me through. My strength came back slowly and my palpitations disappeared. I was able to sleep well and my knee pains and pricking feeling in my feet disappeared too. I followed her treatment with faith and gave my utmost commitment to the treatment process. I repeated my tests after 3 months and the results were amazing. All reports were normal now and Rachna commented that “my reports were like a 20-year-old’s and that I deserve a medal and a pat on the back.” Her positive comments were an incentive which propelled me forward.

My Cholesterol and Blood pressure levels came down and Rachna suggested I consult my GP and reduce the tablets. I was able to reduce them by half and they remain normal. All this was achieved in just 12 weeks! Now my focus is to get rid of rest of the pills and stick to my nutritious and healthy diet. With Rachna behind me to guide and help I am absolutely positive I can achieve this.

I am very happy that I placed my trust in Rachna. Although I still have not met her physically, she is a warm and a friendly person with a renowned understanding towards all her patients. Our skype sessions are chatty and happy. When the going got tough for me in the first 2 weeks Rachna sent me her Oats recipes, chutney ingredients and coriander sauce recipes which I found very tasty and useful. I have included them into my daily diet now. I am spreading Rachna’s holistic healing process to all my Sri Lankan & London friends. I look forward to meeting Rachna face to face end August when she visits London for a health conference.

The world needs to know about this simple but sincere Indian Lady who has made a humongous contribution to Nutritional medicine. Rachna, You are an inspiration and will never be forgotten! You made a 60 year old woman feel 20 again!

— Nalini Kannangara, 60 years, London

Become a Health Coach

 

I have seen disease close upfront – I suffered from rheumatoid arthritis in 2006, and I was bed ridden, pumped up with toxic medication and still in inhuman pain, with deformities in my hands and feet. I have seen both my parents struggling and then emerging victorious with cancer.

Since 2008, my mission has been to create awareness and heal patients who are struggling with a low quality of life due to limited medical interventions. Holistic healing has surprising benefits at various levels: it improves lives via less physical or emotional pain, side effects of medication, disability, depression due to helplessness in achieving good health or just combatting severe fatigue. As a result, most of my patients and clients across 21 countries have been patients of autoimmune diseases and cancer. Step by step, holistic healing with me has meant them improving on all parameters with those who followed as prescribed, and finally emerged winners, just like I did and do every day, when I lead my life without rheumatoid arthritis today.

Holistic healing works in multiple ways, unlike medication or surgery. It starts repair at a biological level, and it doesn’t focus on one body part alone. It heals your mind, body and soul. Like a jigsaw puzzle, all your pieces begin to join back, and bring together a beautiful picture of you, as God meant you to be – healthy, happy and high energy.

Today, with limited time and too many people falling ill, I want to equip more and more people with the power of healing, hence I’m starting health certification programs. You can use this to heal yourself, your family, loved ones, colleagues and those around you. Make the world a healthier, happier place. Get trained with my certificate programs and change the world, one person at a time. Look around you, someone close to you needs this advise and support because they are struggling with a disease, or depression or pain. Healing them holistically then, gives you the happiness and get the gratitude from them.

I am reaching out to you, because you can just learn like I did, and do it. All my patients tell me, that they were meant to find me so I could heal them, and I tell them, that God wanted to heal you, and he created a path that led you to me. He’s just using me as a medium to make you better. Today, I’m transferring that knowledge to heal people, to you. Sign up for my certificate programs and restore your health, and then your loved ones.

Be the healer.

Start here.

 

“Your 12-year-old daughter has an autoimmune condition.”

“I am not what happens to me. I am what I choose to become.”

March 23, 2017

hands-340912_1920I was in Goa for a work conference when I got a call from my husband. My 12 year old daughter had severe pain in her left hip. The slightest movement led to excruciating pain and it had gotten so bad over the night that she could not walk to the bathroom and my husband had to carry her.

My mind raced back to the last three months. Something was not right.

Early Jan, she had complained of shoulder and wrist pain which we put down to a music injury. An ankle swelling had followed put down to banging it somewhere in school carelessly.

And now this.

Cutting my trip short, I came back to Mumbai, and having come to the rapid conclusion that this needed immediate investigation, got an appointment with our paediatrician the very same day.

March 26, 2017

Physical exam, flurry of blood tests, an appointment with a rheumatoid paediatric specialist all in a blur over three days and we had a diagnosis – Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis. And a lot of words to swim in. AutoImmune Disease. RHEUMATOID. Methotrexate. DMARDS. NSAIDS and more.

Seeing your child in pain, getting a diagnosis of a self limiting condition is not something you can ever prepare for.

As a family, my husband and I had gravitated towards homeopathy and both our children had pretty much grown up to 12 and 10 years without even a single dose of Paracetamol. Friends when their children came over for sleepovers would have to send their emergency drugs along. The ground work on leaning on treatment protocols that addressed the core issues and not managed symptoms had already been laid by our homeopath and our general resistance to OTC medication.

And now here we were confronted with what seemed like a pretty devastating extreme choice of cancer drugs which would anyway not really even “cure” and in addition plausibly come with a zillion side effects as google pages will tell you.

But somewhere over the fuzz quite instantly a strong instinct brought clarity. Without needing to articulate it for both of us,  we agreed and affirmed that the proposed treatment by the reputed and kind rheumatologist sounded counter-intuitive , so we will find a more equanimous path. We both agreed that Methotrexate injections was at least not the first path we would take and confident we will come to a more acceptable alternative. We talked to friends, family and searched extensively online.

Our homeopath who had helped our kids stay off allopathy all these years was in the States visiting his daughter. Ayurveda from many sources was definitely seen best suited to address our immediate need. Meanwhile Anand found Rachna’s blog and shared it with me. We agreed we must try and get an appointment with her and I shot off a mail to her as we flew to Cochin.

March 27th, 2017

The Ayurvedic doctor in the small hamlet in Kerala was kind and reassuring. But the oil treatments, the heat, just something about it all just did not vibe with our daughter and she rejected it with her whole being, literally wanting to escape it or be rescued.

Enter Rachna Chhachhi:

Meanwhile Rachna replied to our email and we secured an appointment to meet her. Her affirmation on holistic healing, self assured engagement, empathetic energy and clear articulation of “disease reversal” versus “ disease management” gave us immediate confidence that she could be the right person to help us. That she had herself experienced and reversed her own autoimmune disease was enough data at that point to cement our interest in meeting her.  So we cut short our trip and flew back to Mumbai, still anxious, yet hopeful.

March 30th, 2017

When we met Rachna, our first impression was of a radiant and warm person who understood. She spoke to our daughter directly and formed a connection.She communicated with a poise and unflappable conviction that gave us all immediate comfort.

Rachna’s holistic healing framework involved at its core a drastic reset of our daughter’s diet.

From a 13 year old’s point of view, to put it mildly, highly restrictive and frustrating. No pepperoni pizza? No milk? No cheese? No dosas? No ice cream? No cold drinks? No prawns? In our so far south indian vegetarian home – no sour and no lentils? Ahem – basically that ruled out most things in our diet.

Instead turmeric and garlic and salads and olive oil and raw nuts and oily fish… which for my foodie daughter was in her words “a devastating change in her life”.   

We left armed with a Diet framework, a list of nutritional supplements to compensate for nutrients lacking in her body and a strong routine of yoga stretches and pranayama. Sage advice also on listening to the patient first when it came to how much rest she needed which would be plenty.

Rachna helped further with a weekly food plan and even some recipes thrown in to navigate the new diet.

As we left Bandra and drove home quietly reflecting, It had only been a week since our diagnosis but we felt confident that our daughters care was in the right hands.

A year on:

It is by no means easy. We have grown in our repertoire of recipes immensely to satisfy a curious teen palate, with huge creativity and support. It takes a village to raise a child goes the saying and we have had lots of help from many quarters.

The result:

  • Her autoimmune readings are down by half
  • Her inflammation counts are all down by half
  • Her vitamins status and immunity is up
  • The flare ups experienced in the last six months are petering out and intensity is reducing
  • We almost always clearly linked to a trigger – exhaustion, anxiety or travel
  • The conventional toxic mediations like methotrexate are now far, far away from our vision of treatment choice due to the results of holistic healing

Of course she cheats from time to time, has cravings for foods she isn’t allowed, is still not fully committing to pranayama… but mostly does an incredible job of following through.

When a child goes through this experience it is almost impossible to fully understand what it feels like. Physically and emotionally living with a diagnosis that has life long implications definitely impacts how one processes their life, their world. From everyday life (snack time in school, birthday parties, inability to stay up late at sleepovers) to concerns about coping, a vulnerability creeps in and as parents of a confident smart teen, this is the most challenging. To help the child navigate through this and rise like a phoenix triumphant over the disease, in control of its impact; to go on and chase her dreams “in spite of” and watch her succeed. We stumble often but when I step back and see the tenacity and resolve my daughter demonstrates, I can only admire and learn.

With Rachna to guide, coach, steer, admonish (she does that often, to our benefit) and understand our daughter and us, we remain resolute, patient and positive of a robust life for our daughter.

As Pop singer Katy Perry tells us … “I won’t just survive, you will see me thrive!”

— Shalini, proud mother

 

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