Earlier this week, I came down with some pretty nasty food poisoning. It’s been a disgusting and quite painful few days. And while there are some portions of this post that may be a little gross, I’ll try and keep it informative enough…because we’ve all been there. And once in the eye of that shit storm, it’s pretty good to know how to get out.
Last Sunday I had a little dinner party for 3, including myself. There were homemade chicken pies and pizza, some fried chicken from a favorite local vendor, and some fresh watermelon juice. There were also a thousand beers and a lot of cigs. We all ate the pies and pizza, drank all the beer, and smoked all the darts. Only two of us ate the fried chicken, and I was the only one who drank the watermelon juice, as my other two friends went straight for the beers. I was the only one who got the poisoning.
On Monday I woke up with mild stomach cramps, but I attributed it to the beer. I went to work as usual, feeling no more than a typical hangover and the odd cramp in my gut. By Tuesday, it was noticeably worse and my stomach was bloated and tight to the touch. Everything I ate or drank pulled a runner and jettisoned from my body within minutes. It was like a portal had opened up, and I was a living meat faucet. The pains got worse over the course of the day, and I was forced to leave the classroom more than once. Unfortunately, the bathroom was right next to the class and the sink had a very quiet tap. The only way I could mask the explosive trumpet blasts of stagnant pond water blasting forth was to constantly flush the toilet. I suppose this is also known as a ‘courtesy flush’.
By Wednesday, the best I could do was lie on my back and avoid movement all together; except for the thousand bathroom trips and water refills. I walked doubled over like an old man who had been sucker punched in the gut. With each step, the cramps bounced around and it felt like my entire stomach was going to just fall off completely. When I lay on my left side, I could feel churning bubbles rise to my right side and vice versa. I was a shaken bottle of chocolate soda. Dear Diary Ah, this blows…
Still not sure whether it was the watermelon juice or the chicken, it was pretty clear that I had Salmonella. It wasn’t the first time, and it’s hard to forget special and specific pains. It was probably just a bad piece of chicken, but then again it could’ve been the ice in the juice, or the fruit itself. Salmonella can live on fruits and vegetables that weren’t properly washed, and in the water. Chicken and pork might be the easiest way to get poisoned, but there are other ways.
The one thing I didn’t do was go to the doctor, because what’s the point? If severe enough, you might get put on antibiotics that can actually do more damage than good. I knew this wasn’t my first or worst Salmonella Cyclone, and so I ranked it a category 3 out of 5. Not great, but it wasn’t going to kill me.
I did some online research and got some helpful advice from other friends who’ve also been down this shit hole. And as I’ve said before, I don’t always go in for all the natural remedies. It’s not that I don’t believe in them, it’s just that they usually take a long time to have any noticeable effect. But I must say, to my surprise, the four ingredients I already had on-hand sorted me out pretty quickly. Below is a short list of simple natural ingredients; easy to get a hold of, and very easy to use…if you’re ever been kissed by Cinderella Salmonella. They helped me, and I hope they help you too.
Grapefruit Seed Extract (GSE)
It’s been thought for years that GSE has very powerful antiseptic, anti-fungal, anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties. That’s a lot of antis. Basically, I was told by a friend who uses it often to mix around 15 drops in 300 ml of water. I doubled this as my water bottle holds around 600 or so. It didn’t really make me feel any different, and I was still going to the bathroom every 20 minutes, but I had faith. I did this twice a day from Wednesday to now. For more information on how it works, you can read here. I must say though that the house is split on its effectiveness, scientifically. But I think it has helped. This is the brand I use, as there are a lot of scam products out there.
Ginger has been used for centuries for fast relief of stomach upset. From indigestion to trapped gas, chewing on a few slices of raw ginger brings almost instant relief, to a degree. And while the effects are temporary–an hour at best, you can always eat more, it ain’t gonna hurt you. If you’re not a fan of the taste of raw ginger, you can steep it in boiling water and make a tea out of it. It helps.
The same goes with honey–it’s good for the gut, and has anti-fungal, anti-bacterial properties. I recommend raw honey, so you can be sure of what you’re actually getting. This is somewhat of a problem in Taiwan–a lot of fructose gets sold as “real” honey. I personally like this brand because it’s a big jar and cheaper than most. Basically, on top of the GSE and ginger, I ate a tablespoon of this after the ginger, while drinking down my million waters.
Apple Cider Vinegar (With Mother)
Last, but maybe my favorite of all. I drink this stuff on a semi-regular basis. And for the past few days, it’s been 2 tablespoons first thing in the morning, with water afterwards. Water, always the waters. There are a lot of brands on the market, but I’ve always gone with Bragg’s. The mother is clearly visible at the bottom, and it’s full of flavor.
I’m happy to say that after I started all this on Wednesday up to now, I’m feeling about 85% better. I’m still pissing out my ass, but not nearly as much, and the pains are all but gone, as is the bloating. I’m still sticking to light foods such as yogurt (also helpful), bananas, and some brown rice. I imagine that by tomorrow, I could probably even sneak in a frank or two. As always, prevention is the best cure. Don’t go chasing Chocolate Waterfalls. Hee Haw!