A couple years ago, an awesome breakfast would consist of bacon, sausage, eggs, cheese, biscuits and gravy. Now, that type of breakfast turns my stomach to think about eating. I watch my mom eat that type every morning along with her diet Pepsi while I fix my protein shake or oatmeal with almond milk, yogurt, and fresh fruit. I focus on eating clean, she could care less. My health is fragile, she is strong as an Ox. That is just the way it is for people like me with auto-immune disorders. For me, the initial diagnosis of Lupus and Rheumatoid Arthritis were viewed as a death sentence. A little more than a year later and I have a new view. Maybe the illness saved me. I could have chosen to do nothing or I could research and evaluate my life to make improvements. Obviously, I chose the latter. In the past year and a half since I started this journey, I have eliminated caffeine, cigarettes, and sodas from my life. I try to avoid processed foods, no fried foods, and limit sugar. I added 14 daily vitamin and mineral supplements specific to my bodies needs. I did fruit only fasts 3 times to flush my system of toxins. I weaned off high blood pressure medications and my blood pressure has remained normal. I have not used the asthma inhaler in over a year nor any allergy medication. I exercise at least 30 minutes everyday. I cook from scratch and maintain a “fresh is best” attitude. It has not been easy. In fact it’s a huge challenge especially when the other people in your life are not on board with the same philosophy. But somewhere along the way in my daily struggles and turmoil from the disease and lifestyle change, I transformed. I am ok with who I am. I still struggle daily from the disease and making healthy choices but the bottom line is, I like the new me. And I’ve discovered I don’t like bacon, eggs with cheese, biscuits and gravy, and coffee. Instead, give me a protein shake with flaxseed and fresh fruit any day.