Alternative healthcare, or Our Hippie Lifestyle (part 3, last na ‘to, promise!)

To be fair, Dentex solved my jaw-clicking problem almost immediately. Of course, at the cost of wearing a plastic appliance that forced your jaw to align itself. You can’t help but be frustrated that your first attempt at braces actually made things worse (even if it improved my looks by straightening out my horse teeth).
Alternative Doctors
Let me list below the alternative doctors we frequent:
  1. Fr. Jacob Gnalian – priest, Ayurvedic doctor, patience-tester.

    Fr. Jacob Gnalian (Indian Catholic priest/Ayurvedic doctor) – Visits to Fr. Jacob will teach you a lot about patience (or your lack thereof). He is a jolly Indian priest (Slumdog Millionaire, not Dances with Wolves), but he really takes his time and has absolutely no respect for yours. However, his knowledge in Ayurveda and his belief that our incurable ailments are curable (as can be attested by his numerous patients and success stories) make the wait somewhat worth it. I get my regular dose of eyedrops and tablets for my glaucoma from him. Here’s a Rappler article about him. His clinic is in 628 Sto. Niño St., Mandaluyong (near the Mandaluyong City Hall). 

  2. Dr. Tan of Binondo – is a somewhat famous Chinese doctor based in Binondo. He will shine a
    Chinese herbs, mushrooms, twigs, insects, leaves, cockroaches, roots, branches, bugs, yum!

    light on your tongue and take your pulse, and from there will recommend a concoction that you prepare as a tea, which is absolutely horrible. Again recommended by my mom and also found out some friends are also frequent customers. We come to basically keep our blood sugar low and keep the chronic diseases (like gout and glaucoma for me) in check. You can do a google search on “Dr Tan of Binondo” for more info.

  3. Efren Guazon – was a talented manghihilot based in Quezon City. He combined the traditional Filipino hilot which he inherited from his mother and integrated it with western theory. He cracked our backs and made us squeal in pain as he pinched the hell out of our accupressure points. He also surprised us with his ultra-hot hands which he used as a natural hot compress. His advocacy was to train new manghihilot, much to the chagrin of fellow hilots. Unfortunately, he prematurely died of tongue cancer…or kulam, due to the enemies he created from the tight circle of albularyos. You can still buy his organic products (lemongrass extract, various healing oils, natural soaps) from his wife from their stall in Roxas Public Market, Champaca cor. Sct. Chuatoco streets, near Quezon Ave./Classmates. 

Our Learnings

  1. We are far from the ideal lifestyle – We haven’t even gone full organic yet. We don’t drink water at the right time (30 mins. before eating, 1 hour after). I’m pretty sure we aren’t hitting the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables in our diet. We still enjoy the occasional dessert. However, we found that we’ve built quite a tolerance from the bad stuff like sharing dessert, and feeling some discomfort whenever we overindulge.
  2. It took a while before we felt positive effects – And why wouldn’t it? We spent 30 years eating junkfood, fats, soda, etc. So it makes sense it will take our bodies 6 months to 1 year to even start pushing the bad stuff out.
  3. We went through a healing crisis – We experienced more-than-usual headaches and flu-like symptoms, which really tempted us to quit and down a handful of Bioflu. But we’re glad we pushed through.
  4. It’s really hard to do – Just drinking 8-10 glasses is tough. When I think about it, I used to drink only 3-4 times a day, if I do the drinking during meals math. It helps that I have a pitcher of water beside me, and you can assign the helper to always bring a pitcher to your desk or bedroom. And every time I get up to drink, I usually down 2 glasses to reach my quota.
  5. We built a tolerance – Like I said in my previous post, just passing by a fastfood joint can make me nauseated. Yup, this lifestyle has made me into a food snob. Though I still enjoy buffets, I doubt I get my money’s worth. Unless I’m really hungry, I can’t finish a cup of rice anymore.

In conclusion, we’re pretty happy we started on this alternative path. It really helps to have a partner who’s on the same health page as you. Anj used to take antibiotics at the first sign of phlegm. I used to take Biogesic, Excedrin, Advil, Ponstan (before I became allergic) like Tictacs. But we eventually got used to no soda, waking up at 5am for a shot of calamansi, and breakfast fruit shakes. Hopefully, we’ve put our daughter on the same path, though we may have overdone it. She avoids candies and chocolates and proudly declares that her brain isn’t addicted to sweets.


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