Exciting News For This Blog! Please Read


Hi everyone!

This blog has been my heart and soul for years. I love it because it helps me to deal with my lupus while helping others on their journey as well. I have tried to incorporate lots of information about lupus so it can help those who are newly diagnosed as well as those in their journey for a long time. I share my own experiences with lupus from the good to the bad, the drug trial I was in, and how I have come off of most of my meds and started using food as medicine.

You may have noticed that the name of the blog has changed. I have changed it to “My Old Kentucky Homestead”, which is my domain name. While this blog is a work in progress,  trust me, it is still the same blog, it is just a name change.

I will still be posting about lupus and all that comes with that. The same posts are here for you. The only difference is that I am upgrading the blog and making it much easier to navigate. I am also making it more professional. I finally made the decision to upgrade so I can receive passive revenue from all my hard work. This decision has been a long time in the making but I finally am pulling the trigger so to speak.

I also plan on going through the existing lupus posts to update them as many of them have changed through the years. For example, many medications are now not being used or the use has changed. I plan on bringing those posts up to date with current information on the subject.

I hope you will remain with me. I am going to be posting lupus related content as well as my homesteading journey, recipes, herbal remedies, and much more now. You will still have the lupus content as before, but you may find a new recipe you want to try, or learn a bit about the herbal medicines I use. It is going to be a true labor of love for me to combine the two things near and dear to my heart.

I originally started this way and then made a new blog just for my homesteading. This was too difficult to keep up with two blogs so instead, I used my domain name on this one and am combining the two back again. As I said, you will still have the same lupus articles but with added content now.

I know most of you may not be interested in homesteading, but I hope you will welcome the new direction and stick with me here. I really am so excited about this whole big change and I hope you are too.

I want to personally thank each and every one of you for being a follower and for enjoying my passion of sharing our lupus journeys together. Stay with me and we can continue to grow together.

I have plans for merchandise as well. I will be working hard to make this site much more easy to navigate, and new graphics and more personal content too. This is going to be a great change for our family and I hope you enjoy it. Please send me feedback as it grows on what topics you would like to see. I am also going to be working on a few instructional courses to help those interested in a variety of subjects.

Again, thank each and every one of you for being on this ride with me. I hope I do not disappoint you.

Do You Forage?


Ok, let’s start with the first question in the title. Do you forage? What exactly is foraging? To define foraging, it basically means to hunt for provisions or food. In the context in this post, I use it as a word to describe what I love to do in the spring. I forage. What do I forage for you ask? Anything that is medicine. I like to make salves for various things as well as tinctures to use when needed. I forage to find these medicinal plants that are free for the taking and use. Why pay the doctor and pharmacy for medications that basically are synthetic and poor copies of what the earth provides?

What do I forage for in the spring? In the spring, the earth is awakening from its winter slumber. The beautiful colors of yellows, reds, purples and greens are the best medicine for the soul after a long and cold winter. This is also the time of year when many common plants are readily available and so useful for us. I will share the things I forage this time of you and why in the following paragraphs.

This is not a complete list by any means, however, it is the main plants I find and use. There are many plants out there so please make sure you know what you are getting and using. Become educated on the plants and never use something you do not know. I also have posts about many of these where I go into detail on them. Please look them up as well and see if you want to forage for your own “weeds”.

  1. Purple Dead Nettle
Purple Dead Nettle

Purple dead nettle is everywhere. It grows prolifically in most areas. While called a nettle, it is not like the renowned stinging nettle. The leaves do have little hairs on them like the stinging nettle, but they do not sting. It is actually not in the nettle family at all, rather, it is in the mint family. It has medicinal qualities like being anti-inflammatory and astringent. It makes a good basic salve choice and can be used in combination with other “weeds” to be used for salves. If you get a bug bite, take some, chew it up and spit it out and put on the bite. It really works. I like to make salves and infuse it into oils to use that way. You can also make a tincture of it and it will help during those awful allergy times of the year.

Purple dead nettle

2. Chickweed

The pretty little chickweed flower

Chickweed is another one of those must haves in your home apothecary arsenal. It grows almost anywhere and is found by the distinctive leaves and pretty little white flowers on it. You will typically find it in small bunches. Chickweed is great to use in salves. I infuse it into oil first then make salves with it for diaper rashes and skin irritations. It is anti-inflammatory and also antiseptic qualities. You can make a tea from it. I add here that you should be mindful of ingesting it only because it contains things which may counteract with medications you may be taking, so use caution and educate yourself. It is good in a salve to use for psoriasis too.


3. Dandelions

Beautiful dandelions blossoms

Dandelion is the much maligned plant that is amazingly beneficial and should be given the respect it deserves. The entire plant is used in various ways, from the flower to the root. I could write a book on the great things about this humble plant. However, I will keep it short and encourage you to do your own research to discover the benefits for yourself. I pluck the flowers (and leave many for the bees) and infuse them in oil to use in my dandelion lotion bars. I also dehydrate them to use when the flowers have withered away and I need more. You can make a really great tea from them as well. I make dandelion jelly from the blossoms too. The leaves can be eaten in a salad and provide many nutrients. The roots make a great substitute for coffee and have many medicinal qualities as well. This plant is not native to the US, it was intentionally brought to this country by the early settlers, who knew the medicinal qualities of the gem. The natives called it white mans footprint, since the settlers planted it and it grew wherever the white man lived. Always pick where there are no poisons used.

The beauty of the blossom of the dandelion

4. Henbit

Henbit flowers

Henbit is another one of those “weeds” that some folks want to eradicate from their lawns. It is usually found near purple dead nettle. The two at first glance look similar, but you can tell the difference up close. Henbit is commonly used as an antirheumatic, purgative, diaphoretic and laxative. It got its name because chickens love the stuff. It is also anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antifungal and antibacterial in qualities. I infuse it into an oil and use it in salves to compliment other herbs like yarrow and plantain. It can be eaten in spring salads. The salve can help those with joint pain and has been used for hundreds of years for the same.

A patch of henbit

5. Wild Violets

Delicate tiny flowers of the wild violet

I must say that this is one of my favorite flowers to pick. I can be found sitting in our yard picking as many as I can. I use them to make wild violet jelly as well as infusing them in oil for salves. The flowers can also be added to spring salads for a pop of color and beauty. As for medicinal qualities, they are anti-inflammatory, antirheumatic, diuretic and a mild laxative, to name a few. You only use the leaves and flowers. The roots are not used and can be toxic so only use the above ground parts. You can make a lovely tea, make tinctures, oil infusions, syrup and poultices. It is one of the things I get the grandkids to “harvest” in the spring. I make the jelly and it is a beautiful shade of lavender.

Violet have many uses

This is just a short list of all the things I enjoy to forage in the spring. We are lucky in that the mountain we live on has so many wonderful things to forage this time of year, with many growing in our yard. Next time you are outside, see if you have any of these lovely “weeds” available to you as well. You might be surprised at just how many you do have. So get out there and FORAGE!

Community Action and Unity


I just wanted to continue from my previous post about winter 2021. I drove into town today to find even more folks helping folks during the clean up from all the flooding. I stopped and took a few photos. I only got the tip of the iceberg of folks helping.

Our little town of Ravenna has a population of around 600 folks. Irvine, the county seat, is not much bigger. In spite of this being a rural county, many locals as well as others, have set up places to help those impacted by this historic flood.

For example, the families of 2 Farms Meet, who we get our local beef from, set up grills and cooked hot meals for those needing them. They gave them to those helping folks flooded out as well as to those who have lost everything. It makes me proud to see locals helping locals.

The local food pantry has also stepped up in handing out water and food as well. These are donations from groups out of town and so appreciated by those needing it.

Folks are also donating clothing, toys and blankets for flood victims as well. It is such a heart warming scene to see that folks are giving so much.

I just want to say that FEMA is coming in on Monday. I’m glad to hear it. So many of these folks have lost everything and many had no flood insurance. The rebuilding of their lives will take time. I know because we lived in a home that flooded out and it is not easy to start again. Judging by the support these folks are getting, it is good to see everyday folks giving to their neighbors, to help them in this difficult time. The waters may have receded now but the clean up will be going on for some time to come.

I want to say thank you to all who are giving of their time, money and possessions to help their neighbors and towns. I’m proud to be a resident of Ravenna and Estill County.

Winter Part Two


Just when we thought winter was done with us, we had a surprise. In three days we had over five inches of rain. The rain made the Kentucky river overflow. Our town floods in several spots just about every spring. We expect that to happen. However, this would prove to be different.

The flood stage is 31 feet. What was the level after all that rain? Well, the record flood was 39 feet. This time? The flood level was 41-43 feet. It broke records. It flooded worse than has ever happened in our town. People were shocked.

We live on top of a mountain. We ended up being cut off from everything. All roads out were flooded. Our road was flooded at its low spot. Two of the other near towns were under water as well. It was definitely not something we had planned for.

So many businesses most likely will not reopen. We know of at least two that will not. It is sad because our little town has few businesses as it is. Our area has a state of emergency declared by the governor and they are working on getting federal aid as well.

In the end, there was one fatality. A man entered his flooded home to retrieve something and was electrocuted. The losses of homes and businesses will be high. So many lost everything. We were lucky. Now the clean up begins. We are still cleaning up from the two snowstorms and the ice storm. We do wonder, what is next? So far, 2021 is already rivaling 2020, and it is the beginning of March!!

I want to add that in our town today, groups of everyday folks are handing out food, clothing and water for those in need. We also saw people delivering dumpsters to the houses that were under water to help in the clean up. I cried as we saw all the unity and love in our town. Folks helping their own. We live in an amazing place for sure. I also want to mention the businesses who are collecting items as well. Plus all those from elsewhere who are coming in to help clean up for folks here. In times like these, I see hope in humanity.

Hope you are all safe and good!

We Survived Winter So Far


As the title states, we have survived the great snow/ice apocalypse of February 2021. The month still is not over, so things could change. However, we have done well overall and considering that we have had to have three surgeries, multiple trips to Lexington for follow up doctor visits from the surgeries, and getting our car stuck in our driveway, we are still going.

We thought that maybe this was going to be a mild winter. We got to February and thought spring was just around the corner. Silly, foolish thoughts. In reality, winter was just waiting patiently to find out how ready we were. The good news is that while we live rurally, we have learned to be as prepared for any type of emergency in our power to be ready for. Winter weather is one of those things. We know that by living on top of a mountain, we would have to face uncertain weather head on. We moved here a year ago. It was a beautiful sunny day in the 70 degree range the day we moved in. A few days later, it snowed, about 2 inches of snow. We thought it was beautiful. After that, not much winter weather arrived and spring came along. I will say though that spring came and went. It was freezing temperatures late into May on the mountain last year. Just enough to push back the first year garden.

Truthfully we knew winter weather could ground us for awhile and we actually looked forward to it doing just that. We are not what you would call “preppers”, but we knew to have supplies in case we were stranded for a time. Enter 2021, February. It started out cold but not much in the form of precipitation. We got a little snow. Nothing to write about. We thought spring was coming for sure. The next thing we know is we are under a winter storm warning, forecasting 8-10 inches of snow followed by a half inch of ice. Ok, we thought, buckle up and get ready. We checked our supplies, and off I went to get the things we needed like batteries and a few more candles. We had plenty of food. This would be our big test of our preps. Bring it on!

We know that power can go out at any time on the mountain. It can and does even on good weather days. We thought we were ready for that as well. Were we? Well, I can say that yes, we were prepared for it. Our winter storm warning was changed to an ice storm warning. No snow at all, just two or more inches of ice. Yikes! Snow you can do things in, ice, not so much. When the offending ice arrived, it made things really slick and cold. It also caused the trees around us to ice up and start losing branches and whole trees were falling over. The result? Power went out. Now, I can empathize with those who lose power for a few hours. However, we lost power for over four days. How did we cope?

We have propane heat that uses no electric, so we had heat. We have flashlights and candles, so we had light. We have food that can be heated up, so we had food. We also have a coleman camp stove so we could cook (or reheat, and yes, with a window open so no carbon monoxide poisoning). We have a carbon monoxide alarm in case we didn’t ventilate it enough. My husband wanted to go to his mom’s while we were without electric. I wanted to stay at home. We compromised. We went for one night, then I came home alone until it was over. How was it?

It was quiet. It was peaceful. It was a great time to reflect on what is important. It was also a great time to assess our preparedness. You see, after I got back home, a winter storm warning came out and we got 8-10 inches of snow on top of the 2 inches of ice we already had. It was so beautiful and serene. It was also dangerous, in that, the trees which were already falling all around our home, were now loaded with heavy snow. I went out to charge my cell phone in the car, and sat watching trees limbs and whole trees as they gave way under the weight of all the ice and snow. It sounded like gunshots. It was eerie. It was surreal. It was fascinating as well.

Looking at the bright side, we will have a lot of firewood for the upcoming season. It also weeded out the weaker trees and since only one tree posed a threat to our home, we were fortunate. It was very difficult for the power company folks though. They were out in all of this mess, having to cut trees down, and dodge the trees that were falling around them. They were working 16 hour shifts trying to get everyone back up and powered. Yes, they make decent money, however, they really did work hard trying to make everyone happy. There were six guys on a team in front of our house for a whole day. Since my freezer had been out I was cooking up some of the stuff in it. I cooked up eight hamburger sized sausage sandwiches with cheese, and an apple apiece, and took them out to the power company workers. They truly appreciated them very much. We appreciated them for all their hard work as well.

I loved going outside and taking some pictures of how things progressed during these two storms. As you can see, many of the trees were bowed down to the ground. One tree fell across the road but the workers moved it to the side. One tree, next to our driveway, fell across it. It is a shame because it was such a shade giving tree. The clean up from all this will take some time. We have to wait until the ice melts to safely get into cutting the trees down that need it.

I would like to add that we got our power back on a little over four days after it went out. It stayed on for 36 hours before going off again. This time, however, it was only off for a few hours and has been back on since then. My husband decided he wanted to come home so I cautiously got out of our driveway to the clean road and went to pick him up. As we tried pulling up the driveway on our return, the car got stuck. We had to have friends come help us get it out and at least parked it at the bottom of our driveway so we could get out when we needed to again.

This was truly an adventure. I loved it! I loved being prepared and ready to face whatever came. It was cozy and comfortable. Relaxing. Watching the snow fall and feeling safe and secure in my own home was truly delightful. Knowing I had what I needed to get through it was what gave me that feeling. Our preps were good. They have been tested and found to be fine. Would I change anything?

The beauty of having to use your preps can show you what changes, if any, you can make to improve your preps. I did just that. After re-assessing all the things we have and how to improve them, I came up with a list of a few things to “upgrade”. For example, we have propane heat. However, it would have been a little better if we had a kerosene heater to back up the propane as needed. Not only for heat, but you can cook on top of them as well. We will get one n preparation for next winter.

Another item we need to upgrade for us is power for our phones. We have some power back up for them but in the future, we need better power packs to have. While I don’t mind going out to the car to charge up my phone, it would be nice to be able to stay in the house instead, where it is warm. I only used my phone for texting which saved power but this is something that would be nice for longer periods of power outages.

One more thing to upgrade would be more coolers for the frozen and refrigerated foods. We only had one small one so while I saved meats, the rest I cooked up to try to save. However, we did lose all our condiments and things from the fridge. I am a canner So we have ready to eat foods and that helped quite a bit.

In the end, while I am sure that some folks had difficulties, we were fine. Preparation is the key. If you choose to live rurally, you need to plan on circumstances like these and prepare accordingly. Planning saves you time, money and gives you peace of mind. I am glad we were ready. How did you all do if you were in this storm in your area? Share your experience in the comments below. Hope your day is great!!

What is Frankincense/Boswellia?


What is Frankincense? You may have heard of it from Bible accounts of gifts of frankincense being given to Mary and Joseph. You may have heard of it in another place. The plain truth is, the word frankincense means quality incense in Old French.

Boswellia serrata is the name of a tree in India that makes special compounds that are useful in medicinal preparations. Frankincense oil comes from this boswellia tree resin. In essence, frankincense derives from the boswellia tree’s resin and is known to have strong anti-inflammatory effects as well as possibly cancer fighting effects too.

Why do I mention this at all? I use frankincense oil for its anti-inflammatory effects for my various autoimmune diseases. Does it help? Oh yes it sure does!* I also take the boswellia serrata capsules daily to keep the inflammation at bay. Let me show a few of the benefits you can get from using the oil, mixed with a carrier oil, topically on your skin. I must caution you though, that too much can actually be toxic so use the oil sparingly. A little goes a long way. Here are some benefits from frankincense oil:

  1. This oil can give your immune system a boost and help prevent illness.
  2. It helps to relieve pain and inflammation.
  3. It can help heal scars, stretch marks and wounds to decrease the size of them.
  4. It can be used to help in the fight of aging skin and wrinkles.
  5. It is useful as a soaking bath to bring about a peaceful, relaxed state for body and mind.
  6. When inhaled, it can help to reduce stress and negative emotions.
  7. Used as a household cleaner, it is antiseptic and disinfectant and can kill germs like cold and flu.
  8. It can lift the skin and tone it to help fight aging.
  9. It can aid in digestion, specifically detoxing and flushing out water.
  10. It can improve memory by inhaling it daily.

Frankincense is a common essential oil and is used in many ways to help a variety of problems, as you can see from the benefits above. It is derived from the resin of the tree genus boswellia.

Boswellia, on the other hand, is able to be purchased in capsule form to use internally. It has its own benefits as well as similarly to frankincense. Let me list a few of these benefits:

  1. It has been proven to help inflammation from arthritis and the pain associated with it. I use it for my lupus pain and it works well for me.*
  2. It has been proven to help with ulcerative colitis and irritable bowel disease. Again, I use it from UC and it does help.*
  3. It has been proven to aid in lessening the attacks from asthma. People who use it are less prone to having asthma attacks than those who don’t. Once more, I use it and it has helped. I mean, sheesh, I have three things in a row it helps so why not use it?*
  4. It has been proven again, to help stop certain cancers from spreading or even forming. There are ongoing studies to see how well it does this.

As you can see, boswellia serrata is a very useful for those who have any of these conditions. I can attest to how well it has helped me in my struggles with lupus, ulcerative colitis and asthma. I began using it to see how well it would work for me. I found it to be not only very effective, but allowed me to remove some medications from my life as a result. My doctor and I discussed this and she was open to letting me try it. I am so thankful that she did. While I still have pain and inflammation, it is much lower now and I am able to function better as well. I guess you could say it is a different type of pain. Instead of masking it with drugs, it is present but manageable for me now. I will take it!

Please, check with your doctor or healthcare professional before starting anything. Frankincense and boswellia can both interact with certain medications so be sure to check.

*Disclaimer* I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on tv. I am sharing my experience with this supplement and my experience only. The things that say proven are based on studies done by medical professionals. Please look into this yourself and be informed. I am not responsible for your actions, only mine.*

Homemade Pizza Sauce


Do you like making your sauces from scratch? I sure do. I especially like the many different tomato recipes I have to use when all those lovely tomatoes start ripening. This is one of those recipes. It is a tried and true yummy sauce. The plus side is that you know exactly what is in it. Without further ado, here is my recipe for pizza sauce.

Pizza Sauce

4 pounds of cored tomatoes

1 onion coarsely chopped

1/4 cup of fresh herbs, basil and oregano

3 large cloves of garlic (peeled and crushed)

salt and pepper to taste

1/7 cup olive oil

Mix the ingredients together in a roasting pan. Roast at 450 degrees for 70 minutes. Remove and place in blender. Blend until smooth. You can freeze this for later use if you make more than you need. This keeps well for freezing.

All you have to do is spread it on your favorite pizza or pizza bread to have the base for your pizza. Enjoy!

What is Fire Cider?


What is fire cider? You might have heard of it. You might not have any idea what I am talking about. Here is information you need to know about this remarkable all natural cider that helps in so many ways.

To begin, what is fire cider? Fire cider is an all natural cider that has medicinal properties. The ingredients carry many different compounds which combined into this cider, make your body healthier. It has been used for a long time but became more widely popular because Rosemary Gladstar highlighted it in her books. Others have claimed the recipe, but in true Rosemary Gladstar style, she makes a point of telling you that it is not her creation but is something that has been used for a long time in history. If you want to learn more about Rosemary Gladstar, you can find her books online. I own two of them myself.

Now that you know a bit of the background of fire cider, it is time to break down the benefits of using it. It is quite impressive the number of things it can do to help our health.

Here is a list of the benefits of drinking fire cider:

Fire Cider Benefits

  • Immune boosting
  • Antioxidant
  • Lowers high blood pressure
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Digestive health
  • Antiviral
  • Antifungal
  • Decongestant
  • Circulation boosting
  • Antibacterial

The ingredients all have something that they bring to the table for a variety of reasons. I will list the ingredients below:

Fire Cider

1/2 cup horseradish, peeled and diced

1/2 cup garlic, peeled and diced

1/2 cup onions, peeled and diced

1/4 cup ginger, peeled and diced

1/4 cup turmeric, peeled and diced (you can also purchase if you do not have any)

1 chili, split in half

1 orange, quartered and thinly sliced

1/2 lemon, quartered and thinly sliced

1/2 cup chopped parsley

2 T chopped rosemary

2 T chopped thyme

1 t black peppercorns

2-3 cups of raw apple cider vinegar 5% acidity

1/4 cup raw local honey

Instructions for making it are easy…just put all the ingredients into a gallon jar then add the vinegar last. Put lid on it and shake at least twice a day. It will be done in 3-4 weeks. You can then strain it through a linen cloth or other cloth to strain out the ingredients and leave the cider to use.

You can use a tablespoon if you feel a cold coming on. It can also be used to keep illness away as well.

DISCLAIMER I do want to add that I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on tv. If you decide to use this cider, it is entirely your decision. I am only sharing what I know works for me. Consult your doctor if needed. It is up to you whether you make and use this or not. I am in no way responsible for your choices and decisions.

Learning to Decipher Medical Language


I posted this before, but thought it was worthy of a repeat since it is something common to all of us with chronic diseases. Enjoy!

Lingo or Medspeak

As someone who comes from a medical professional background (nursing), I had to learn how to medspeak, or the language of medicine with its roots of latin and long unpronounceable words in nursing school. Since my diagnosis, I have found this knowledge to be an asset to understanding what is going on and the variances of the disease. I have also found that many others have been forced to learn the lingo or medspeak upon their diagnosis as well.

When you are diagnosed with a chronic, incurable disease, the first thing many do is look it up online. This can be good or bad. There may be a lot of information out there, some good and some bad, some not important, some important. Some of the information will scare you to death if you read it. For example, when I was first diagnosed with lupus, one of the first things I read was that the life expectancy was ten years. I should point out that I passed the ten year mark about 9 years ago. Unfortunately, that information is still out there and some may stumble upon it and freak out.

With medical diagnoses and prognosis changing every day, it is no surprise that many people are confused by what they find. I think I would recommend if you are researching your diagnosis, start with the national organization in your country. Most times, they have the most current, accurate information available. Once you have waded through the goldmine of information you find there, give it time to digest and process in your mind.

Another great source is to join a support group in your area. You can find out if there are any by once again checking your national organization’s website or calling your local hospitals and asking. Many times, your doctor may even know of any support groups as well.

One of the best ways to investigate the medical lingo is to take it word for word. When you happen on a word you do not understand, stop and look that one word up individually and then try to make sense of it as a whole. Put it in perspective with the sentence. If there is a sticking point, write it down and ask your doctor. Better safe than sorry.

The Criteria for Lupus or the Common Symptoms



This is a list of what things the doctor will be looking for to get a diagnosis of lupus. While there is no specific test for lupus, it is usually diagnosed over a period of time and can be quite challenging to get a diagnosis. If there were only a blood test to take, and have it be determined quicker, we would be much better off. In the end though, it is diagnosed by the cluster of facts surrounding each individual. Please note that this list is the guide for doctors. Thanks!

This information was obtained from the website of the Lupus Foundation of America. You can visit the site for more information at www.lupus.org.

Common Symptoms of Lupus


To help the doctors diagnose lupus, a list of 11 common criteria, or measures, was developed by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR). ACR is a professional association of rheumatologists. These are the doctors who specialize in treating diseases of the joints and muscles, like lupus. If you have at least four of the criteria on the list, either at the present time or at some time in the past, there is a strong chance that you have lupus.

  1. Malar rash – a rash over the cheeks and nose, often in the shape of a butterfly
  2. Discoid rash – a rash that appears as red, raised, disk-shaped patches
  3. Photosensitivity – a reaction to sun or light that causes a skin rash to appear or get worse
  4. Oral ulcers – sores appearing in the mouth
  5. Arthritis – joint pain and swelling of two or more joints in which the bones around the joints do not become destroyed
  6. Serositis – inflammation of the lining around the lungs (pleuritis) or inflammation of the lining around the heart that causes chest pain which is worse with deep breathing (pericarditis)
  7. Kidney disorder – persistent protein or cellular casts in the urine
  8. Neurological disorder – seizures or psychosis
  9. Blood disorder – anemia (low red blood cell count), leukopenia (low white blood cell count), lymphopenia (low level of specific white blood cells), or thrombocytopenia (low platelet count)
  10. Immunologic disorder – abnormal anti-double-stranded DNA or anti-Sm, positive antiphospholipid antibodies
  11. Abnormal antinuclear antibody (ANA)

People with lupus also may experience symptoms that do not appear among the ACR criteria:

  • fever (over 100° F)
  • extreme fatigue
  • hair loss
  • fingers turning white and/or blue when cold (Raynaud’s phenomenon)

Why Choose Grass Fed Beef?


Why should you choose to eat grass fed beef versus corn fed beef? The reasons are many. I will touch on just a few in this post.

The differences between grass fed beef and corn fed beef are many. The biggest reason that farmers use corn for feed is that it is easier and cheaper. You don’t need a lot of pasture land either. When you add in the fact that corn fed beef can ready to process sometimes a year before grass fed, you can see the advantage for the farmer.

While it can be advantageous for the farmer, that are also some problems that occur from feeding corn to cows. Cows are meant to eat grass. Their stomach is suited to eat grass. When they eat a diet of mainly corn, they can develop issues and become sick. Why? Their stomachs are not used to it and it can cause forms of acid resistant e coli to form in their stomachs.

Some farmers also use hormones to help increase the size of the cows earlier for processing. There is a big debate on how the hormones pass through to us when we eat the beef from animals that are given these hormones. You will see many packages these days that say the meat is hormone free for this very reason.

In contrast, grass fed cows are healthier. Their meat is lower in calories which is a plus. Grass fed cows meat is also lower in fat content. It is leaner, which can actually help us to lower our bad cholesterol because it contains good fat.

Another bonus is that grass fed meat contains up to 6 times more Omega-3 than corn fed. Omega-3 is a good fat. It can help reduce your risk of cancer and can actually make it 50% less likely for you to have a heart attack. Wow!

I have only touched on a few of the benefits of eating grass fed beef in this post. Let me add that when you buy locally, from the farmer, it may be a little more expensive but you are helping not only yourself, but your local farmer as well. It is a win-win situation! I buy locally. Do you?