So I Stopped Taking My Medication...
There, I said it. I stopped taking all of my prescription meds. As irresponsible this may sound to some, I know it was the right decision for ME.
I have never had medication in my life, as I have always believed in the power of nature and its natural remedies. However, when I came into Carolina House in July of 2017, the psychiatrist there told me I better start taking certain medication if I really wanted to recover from my eating disorder.
What medication was I taking?
As much as I was against this, I had made a commitment to myself that I was going to ‘surrender’ to the program and follow all of the staff’s recommendations. So, I was prescribed Abilify, a mood stabilizer, as well as Cymbalta, a drug used to treat depression. I took both of these daily throughout my time at Carolina House, as well as all the time leading up to, well, last week.
If you follow me on instagram, you know that I did not feel like myself a couple weeks back. I was constantly tired, felt depressed, and had no motivation to workout (or do anything, for that matter).
Some of these symptoms are indeed side effects of the drugs I was taking. However, the depression seems like quite a contradiction if you think about why I was taking the drugs. So, I did some research and found out that, in some cases, depression can actually worsen when taking certain antidepressants.
I will not go into depth about my opinions on the ‘mood stabilizer’, because I myself believe that the absence of my panic attacks and mood swings has nothing to do with the Abilify, but purely the fact that I went from being severely underweight to a healthy weight. But again, that could just be me.
How did I stop?
Making a full stop to my medication took quite some time. I remember taking it some days, and then not taking it others to see if I could notice a difference. And honestly, I was SHOCKED at my observations. On the days when I didn’t take my meds, I had so much more energy, I felt happier, and a HUGE one: my rumination syndrome (vomiting) was WAY less severe.
This discovery was such an eye-opener for me; I knew I just had to stop. I did some more research regarding how to stop the medication I was taking, and read almost everywhere that it was not safe to stop cold turkey, as I could experience lots of withdrawal symptoms. So, I continued to take my medication 6 days a week, then 5, then 4, and so forth, until I wasn’t taking it at all anymore.
What am I doing now?
Like I said earlier in this post, I believe in natural remedies. I knew that if I completely stopped taking things that were supposed to help me with my mental state, I had to better my life in other areas. I have made HUGE changes in the past two months, from eating meat again to gaining weight to adding certain products to my diet.
The biggest diet I change I have made besides eating meat again, is replacing my (everyday) morning coffee with a powerful matcha drink. I say powerful, because it’s absolutely LOADED with good things.
Besides the endless health benefits of matcha, this drink also has collagen and ashwagandha powder blended into it. I have been using collagen for a quite a while (I took it before I was vegan as well), but have only recently been adding ashwagandha powder to my daily routine.
Ashwagandha has been used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic medicine to boost the immune system, soothe and enhance the nervous system, and promote longevity and vitality. Some of its many benefits include:
enhancing brain function
improving energy levels
These are all the things I was for in a natural supplement, so ashwagandha wins for me! I chose to go with Naturevibe Botanicals Ashwagandha powder when picking one out, as it is 100% organic and is made from purely ashwagandha root. I am not a huge believer in magic, but tbh, this powder is ACTUALLY magical. I have been taking it for a little over two weeks, and I cannot even begin to tell you guys HOW GOOD I FEEL. My energy levels are through the roof, my sleep is AMAZING, and I feel the happiest I have ever felt in YEARS.
I’m still waiting for the last bullet point to kick in with me getting my period again, but when it does, I’ll give y’all an update! Promise :)