The Road to Self Discovery and Inner Beauty
by Bronwen Thompson
(Bournemouth, United Kingsom)
Hello! My name is Bronwen and I live in the United Kingdom beside the sea. Having very fair skin, red hair and freckles means I have always had sensitive, delicate skin. From a young age I have always looked after my skin and have been fortunate never to suffer from any terrible skin problems such as acne. Naturally I am very sensitive to the sun and I find many regular beauty treatments too harsh for my skin, often resulting in rashes, inflammation and itching.
What brought me to this site was my research into Salicylates and their effect on our physical/mental well being as well as our skin care programme.
I was diagnosed at the age of 8 with a severe allergy to Aspirin. Naturally since that time I have not taken an Aspirin tablet and try to avoid all medication containing Aspirin. However, it just seems that for ever I have struggled to maintain a balanced and constant level of health. During my school days, especially at high school, I would often come home feeling very tired and would have to take a nap and found it hard to keep my motivation going.
In my late teens early twenties I moved away from home and went to work in Belgium. I didn't really take great care of myself at that time, spending more time partying and eating too many high fatty foods, such as all those lovely Belgian chocolates. It was during this time that I started to experience quite a few health issues. I struggled with depression, really bad migraines, periods of black outs and my skin would go through spotty/blackhead periods. I would go on diets to loose weight, give up drinking alcohol for a while then lapse back into my old ways. I did give up the chocolates and found relief from the migraines.
In 1987 I married and moved to the Netherlands. I thought married life would sort out many of my problems, it did for a while but the lack of energy, depression, IBS was still there. I found my sensitivity to light increased and was unable to got out without wearing sunglasses even on a dull, cloudy day. In 1988 I became pregnant with my son and at about 6 months pregnant it was discovered I had a serious vitamin B12 deficiency. I received weekly injections for the rest of the pregnancy and felt great. Once I gave birth the injections stopped and I though no more about it. I struggled being a mum with bouts of depression, mood swings,lethargy and my skin reacted accordingly. We moved to Germany, things went OK for a while then it was back to the old routine.
We moved back to the Netherlands in 1994 and in the summer of 1994 I had one of my black outs seriously hurting my head and ending up with concussion. I was very ill for a long time after that and from that time I developed food intolerances to gluten and dairy products. I started to look more at the food I ate and tried lots of holistic therapies to regain some sense of health and normality. I started doing yoga and started my journey of discovery. I followed an exclusion diet and stuck to it religiously but even though I did that many of the health issues that I had struggled with all my life were still there although at times not as bad as they had been in the past.
In 1996 my mum died and then in 1997 we moved again back up to the north of Holland and by the October of that year my marriage was on the rocks. Needless to say my health took a massive hit and my skin told the story of hurt and pain. I divorced in 1998 and moved into my own place with my son. I started to look into macrobiotics as an eating plan and way of life which seemed to help me a lot, although the periods of depression, extreme tiredness and very dry, lifeless skin was still there.
Life took another turn and in July 2002 I had to move back to the UK. Although this was tough for me as I had to leave my son behind in Holland, it really was the beginning of a series of life changing events. For a while I continued with the yo-yo life style of periods of lots of energy to times of depression and lethargy, until 2005 when a friend who was a nutritional therapist was very worried about my health and sent me off to see her doctor.
After numerous tests it was finally discovered that the Vitamin B12 deficiency had never gone away and I was immediately put onto regular injections which I continue to have to this day. What a difference that has made to my life, for the first time since being a teenagers I felt like someone had taken a huge paper bag off my head and said "hello welcome to the world".
Although the B12 helped a lot, especially with the depression and keeping my energy levels up I still didn't feel great all of the time and my skin would be up and down too. In November 2006 another major life changing event hit me big time. I was involved in a serious road traffic accident and suffered several broken bones but more seriously a severe head trauma - I spent three days in hospital in the head trauma unit and that was the event that would change my life forever.
Recovering from the accident has been a full time occupation and a personal battle and struggle on a physical and mental level. I knew at the time that I had had the accident for a very good reason but it would take time for the reason/reasons to be revealed to me. The accident sparked off different reactions, I was no longer able to tolerate any highly chemical skin/hair products, my sensitivity to sun and light had increased, noise and chemical pollution was also now a problem.
It has been a slow process of elimination, changing daily routines, stripping my life back to the bare roots and rebuilding from the ground up. I am happy to say that after two and half years of hard slog I am slowly getting there. However, that general sense of well-being on a constant level just never seems to be quite there.
Recently I experienced painful swelling in the joints on my fingers and strange rashes in elbow/knee joints.
I started to look around on the internet and have been reading up about Salicylates in our food and health care products. This past week I have started to eliminate high Salicylate foods from my diet and already much of the painful swelling in my joints has gone down. My skin seems to be in good shape at the moment and I have been encouraged by this website and all the information which is motivating me to keep on going on my road of discovery.
I want to know more about creating lasting beauty and being able to share my experiences with others and learning from others experiences to be able to live a happy and fulfilling life in the future eating the foods which are in harmony with my body and using beauty products which help me find the natural beauty within.