The 2% Solution: 30 Minutes to Transform Your Life

Chronic Autoimmune Conditions are Not a Death Sentence (here's how to keep thriving in face of the adversity)

May 13, 2024 Dai Manuel Season 1 Episode 95
Chronic Autoimmune Conditions are Not a Death Sentence (here's how to keep thriving in face of the adversity)
The 2% Solution: 30 Minutes to Transform Your Life
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The 2% Solution: 30 Minutes to Transform Your Life
Chronic Autoimmune Conditions are Not a Death Sentence (here's how to keep thriving in face of the adversity)
May 13, 2024 Season 1 Episode 95
Dai Manuel

TEXT ME here - Have a question? Comment? Feedback? I’d love to hear from you.

Navigating life with a chronic condition doesn't have to dim your shine. 

Just ask me for your guide to cultivating resilience and finding joy amidst health challenges. 

On this Mental Health Monday episode at the 2% Solution, I open up about my battle with autoimmune neutropenia and share the essential strategies for thriving—not just surviving. 

Expect a heartfelt exchange that's as informative as it is inspiring, providing a treasure trove of insights for anyone facing their health hurdles or supporting a loved one through theirs.

Strap in for a candid conversation where we unlock the lighter side of tough medical procedures, like my unexpected bone marrow biopsy tales that reveal the surprising strength within us. 

We'll explore the power of positivity and ways to reduce inflammation in the body, all while maintaining a vibrant lifestyle. 

Laughter, lessons, and a little bit of science—this episode is your dose of hope and encouragement to start the week empowered, no matter what health rollercoaster you might be riding.

Support the Show.



A Message from Dai, host of the 2% Solution Podcast:

Hey there, you fantastic listener! 👋

As we wrap up another episode of The 2% Solution Podcast, I want to throw a massive, confetti-filled THANK YOU your way.

As we launch this podcast, your support is like getting an extra espresso in your Venti Americano—unexpected and refreshing!

Your reviews? They're like high-fives to my soul. Your shares? They're spreading more joy than cat videos on the internet. Subscribing? You're officially the coolest in my book.

Meeting in the 2% Collective Community? It's like watching a garden of awesomeness bloom – and you're all the sunflowers making it happen!

Keep being the amazing, 2%-improving rockstars that you are.

🌟 Stay fabulous, stay tuned, and stay 2%! 🚀

Love, laughs, and much gratitude,

Dai M.

P.S. I'm primarily active on Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Feel free to connect and start a conversation. If you're searching for inspiring, motivational, educational, and healthy living content, check out my over 1500 articles at DaiManuel.com - I enjoy writing, okay? lol

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Show Notes Transcript

TEXT ME here - Have a question? Comment? Feedback? I’d love to hear from you.

Navigating life with a chronic condition doesn't have to dim your shine. 

Just ask me for your guide to cultivating resilience and finding joy amidst health challenges. 

On this Mental Health Monday episode at the 2% Solution, I open up about my battle with autoimmune neutropenia and share the essential strategies for thriving—not just surviving. 

Expect a heartfelt exchange that's as informative as it is inspiring, providing a treasure trove of insights for anyone facing their health hurdles or supporting a loved one through theirs.

Strap in for a candid conversation where we unlock the lighter side of tough medical procedures, like my unexpected bone marrow biopsy tales that reveal the surprising strength within us. 

We'll explore the power of positivity and ways to reduce inflammation in the body, all while maintaining a vibrant lifestyle. 

Laughter, lessons, and a little bit of science—this episode is your dose of hope and encouragement to start the week empowered, no matter what health rollercoaster you might be riding.

Support the Show.



A Message from Dai, host of the 2% Solution Podcast:

Hey there, you fantastic listener! 👋

As we wrap up another episode of The 2% Solution Podcast, I want to throw a massive, confetti-filled THANK YOU your way.

As we launch this podcast, your support is like getting an extra espresso in your Venti Americano—unexpected and refreshing!

Your reviews? They're like high-fives to my soul. Your shares? They're spreading more joy than cat videos on the internet. Subscribing? You're officially the coolest in my book.

Meeting in the 2% Collective Community? It's like watching a garden of awesomeness bloom – and you're all the sunflowers making it happen!

Keep being the amazing, 2%-improving rockstars that you are.

🌟 Stay fabulous, stay tuned, and stay 2%! 🚀

Love, laughs, and much gratitude,

Dai M.

P.S. I'm primarily active on Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Feel free to connect and start a conversation. If you're searching for inspiring, motivational, educational, and healthy living content, check out my over 1500 articles at DaiManuel.com - I enjoy writing, okay? lol

Dai Manuel:

Hey there, wellness warriors, welcome back to another Mental Health Monday on the 2% Solution. I'm Diamond Well here to kickstart your week with optimism and empowerment. Today we're diving into a topic very close to my heart staying optimistic while managing a chronic condition. For those that don't know, I've been navigating most of my adult life with a condition, and it's an autoimmune condition called autoimmune neutropenia. Now, I know autoimmune conditions. It's amazing how many people are either learning that they have an autoimmune condition or constantly living Very common in today's day and age, and that opens a whole bunch of other questions. Is it our environment? Is it our upbringing? Is it what? Are we the foods? Regardless, there's still a lot of unknowns when it comes to autoimmune conditions, and so it took them a lot of years to figure out my condition, and this condition called neutropenia means that my white blood cell counts are typically low all the time, and I'll get into this in a little bit when I go deeper on what exactly is neutropenia, but the bottom line is it's quite literally a journey, and it's taught me a lot about resilience and positivity and, quite frankly, lessons I'm eager to share with you today. So, to start, what exactly is autoimmune neutropenia? And even though I'm sharing my story right now around living with an autoimmune condition. Keep in mind, I know there's people listening right now that are dealing with some condition and it's one of those things that's just sort of always there in the background. I know what you're going through and if you don't have anything like that, oh man, congratulations. But still listen on, because I think some of the lessons you'll learn will be very helpful as you navigate your life and the health rollercoaster that we all find ourselves on from time to time.

Dai Manuel:

So what exactly is autoimmune neutropenia? It's a relatively rare disorder in the world of autoimmune conditions in which the body mistakenly targets and destroys neutrophils. Now, this is basically a type of white blood cell that's crucial for fighting infections and it's usually producing our bone marrow and, interestingly enough, I've had three bone marrow biopsies and, my gosh, they're all another story. I went to a student hospital where you know it's a training hospital here in Vancouver and you know most of the doctors are there to learn, they're going through their various practicums, et cetera, and so I obviously have to deal with a hematologist, largely due to the fact that I have this autoimmune condition and it makes sense to work with someone that specializes in blood and the immune system, this student hospital. They're not used to doing bone marrow biopsies, especially into people's hips, you know. They're used to doing it with elderly people, like when they fall, fractured a hip or something.

Dai Manuel:

Here I am in my sort of early to mid-30s getting strapped down to this table and the young student hematologist and actually the surgeon as well you know the one that was responsible with sort of overseeing her do this tap of my hip. It was pretty funny because she had a hell of a workout. They're not used to having such strong bones. So, you see, even though you might be dealing with an autoimmune condition, it doesn't mean you have to suffer another as your life. In fact, you can excel, and so that was at least on the upside, you know, as I got healthy bones, um. So here's this issue. Right, you know my body's like hey yo, neutrophils. I know your job is to guard dye whenever you get to scrape or a bruise, right, you get that nice little pussy stuff that shows up and well, that's what actually neutralizes bacteria so you don't get any infections. Uh, so you can imagine, during COVID, uh, my hematologist was rather funny, uh, or maybe she thought she was funny. Uh, you know the idea of me living in a bubble through COVID because viruses I'm very susceptible to. So anyways, long and short, I was actually quite resilient through COVID. So some other things. As it comes to living and how to thrive even though you have an autoimmune condition, there's ways to reduce inflammation in the body and still excel. We'll talk about that in a second here.

Dai Manuel:

So because I can have this sort of lead and or, sorry, this type of white blood cell and it's getting killed off faster than I can produce it, it basically leads to increased risk of bacterial infections and this requires very careful monitoring and, quite frankly, management. I really got to manage certain things about my life and lifestyle in order to sort of keep me more in a thrive zone than a oh gosh, I'm barely surviving here zone. So living with a chronic condition like this or, quite frankly, any chronic condition really possesses unique challenges. It's not just the physical symptoms. Quite frankly, I've had a lot of emotional toll. Just being someone that's very active, very fitness orientated, very health minded, you know when your body's dealing with something and you just can't do anything about it. I mean on the inside I would become very fatigued and very hard to focus and very low energy and just tough, just tough, and that leads to this sort of emotional and psychological toll at times, which can be quite significant. But and here's a big but research and a bit of personal experience has taught me that maintaining a positive outlook isn't just possible, it's actually a powerful part of the treatment.

Dai Manuel:

So how do we stay optimistic? Let's break it down. Step one it's about acceptance, and acceptance doesn't mean resignation, right, it means understanding and working within your limits. A study from the University of Nevada found that patients who accepted their chronic conditions were more likely to experience psychological well-being. In your limits. A study from the University of Nevada found that patients who accepted their chronic conditions were more likely to experience psychological well-being. It's about saying, okay, this is my reality, but how do I make the best of it? And so it's very growth mindset oriented, and what they found was by erring on that side and just acknowledging okay, this is my condition, but it doesn't mean it has to be a sentence to being a victim to the symptoms. I think it's important to recognize that we can be diagnosed with a condition, but just because we have a condition doesn't mean all the potential symptoms have to be something that we deal with on the day-to-day. In fact, symptoms can often be managed very well, so stay optimistic and acknowledge where you are at Now.

Dai Manuel:

Step two connect with your community Connections. They're essential, whether support groups, online forums, close friends, family. The emotional support from these networks is invaluable. They provide a space to share your experiences and tips and, just as importantly, to realize that you're not alone in all of this. Step three involves setting small, achievable goals. When you live with a chronic condition, it can feel like your aspirations are pretty much being thrown out the window, but they don't have to be. It's about adjusting your goals to fit your capabilities To exercise Well, maybe start with gentle, shorter walks. Are you looking to socialize? A video call can be just as fulfilling as a meeting with somebody in person. It's all about adapting and thriving.

Dai Manuel:

I had to learn that one the hard way. You know, and I think a lot of us around the world did, during that COVID period, during the lockdown at its worst, right, I mean you just that was our situation and you could either make the best of it or a lot of people didn't. And even making the best of it, what was that right? But I did make some decisions during COVID to continue to put some emphasis on my health and well-being, especially the nutrition choices that I made and sleeping and stretching and just basic self-care things. I made a priority and so it got me through that period, you know, and I didn't have any serious lapses in my condition, at least not from the autoimmune neutropenia. It did lead to another condition that came up during COVID which involved a surgery I needed to have to have a cyst removed. Of all things, I'll save that for another time, of course.

Dai Manuel:

Now, setting small, achievable goals, all right. So when you're living with these chronic conditions, it basically feels like low desperation, like it's just, yeah, gone. But when you get to this little place and you do start to achieve those said small goals, it's incredible how motivating and uplifting those can be. Plus, it's a great way to rewire your brain to be able to acknowledge that hey, yeah, not only was it doable, but I did it, I'm the one that did that. Very powerful, because when you learn that about yourself, that confidence grows and our desire to even try new things, recognizing that we can learn and we can get better over time, through practice, through consistency, through frequency. So it's very motivating, you know, and it brings down that intimidation factor when it comes to trying new things.

Dai Manuel:

Now, speaking of thriving, let's talk about cultivating gratitude and mindfulness. Daily gratitude journaling or mindfulness meditation can significantly boost your mental health. The American Psychological Association highlights that such practices reduce stress and enhance your overall psychological flexibility, which basically means you adapt and cope better with day-to-day challenges and, last, always appreciate the power of humor and laughter. Finding moments of joy and laughter in your day is more than okay. It's actually therapeutic. Laughter can boost your immune system, ease the sense of pain and, quite frankly, lighten your emotional load. As they say, laughter is the best medicine and in our case it's a prescription we're taking, and taking daily.

Dai Manuel:

So to wrap up, living with a chronic condition doesn't have to dim your spirits. It's a formidable opponent, but you can manage and thrive with the right mindset and tools. I've not only lived this journey. I am living this journey okay and I'm prepared to have to live it the rest of my life. There's no cure for said condition, just about managing it and fortunately, based on a lot of the choices and some of the strategies I shared with you today, you can too. So remember every 2% improvement adds up, you're stronger than you think. With each small step, you're carving out a path to survival and authentic living. Thanks for tuning in to Mental Health Monday. If today's episode inspired you, please share it with someone who might benefit. And don't forget to subscribe for more motivational insights. And until next time, keep fighting that good fight, embrace your journey and continue to strive to improve by 2% every day. See you next time.

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