Lemons 'n Lyme

When life gives you lemons, use them to beat Lyme


Salt & Vinegar Coconut Chips (AIP/Vegan)

I never liked salt and vinegar chips… I thought they were disgusting, I hated vinegar. And the vinegar flavor in those chips was way too strong. I was always the odd ball out because my friends were obsessed with them. Actually, I still hate salt and vinegar chips. But for some reason these coconut chips taste awesome to me. Perhaps it is because I use apple cider vinegar rather then white vinegar. And you can adjust the amount of vinegar you use to your vinegar-loving likeness.

These are vegan and can easily be made raw vegan by using a dehydrator instead of the oven. Basically, they can fit every diet unless you are allergic to coconut. If you are, I’m so so sorry. These are also the simplest and easiest “chips” ever and now you have no excuse for eating the crap chips from the grocery store when these are 3 ingredients (yes, you read that right) and take 10 minutes total!


Salt & Vinegar Coconut Chips
Makes 3 cups

3 cups of coconut chips/flakes (not the finely shredded variety, the thicker cut version)
3-5 tablespoons apple cider vinegar (depending on how strong you want the flavor)
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 F.
Combine everything in bowl, making sure all coconut chips are thoroughly covered with ACV. Spread mixture out onto a baking sheet in one even layer.
Bake for about 7 minutes, until flakes are slightly browned and crunchy. Check on chips regularly to ensure they don’t burn (every oven is different and coconut can go from white to burnt black reallll quick) and stir mixture half way through.
Let cool and then get your snack on!


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What it Feels Like to be Young and Sick

An emotional roller coaster.

I’ve recently connected with the lovely Summer who runs Sedentary Superwomen. She asked me to guest post about the social and emotional effects of having a chronic illness as a young person. Head on over to her blog to read my response and while you’re over there, check out the rest of her amazing blog!

I’ve got recipes coming soon, but I’m headed to visit my grandma (in PA, you better bet I won’t be touching any grass) so I’ll be posting once I am back.


LDI Update: August

Okay, this is going to be an overall treatment update along with an LDI update. But first, I want to give a huge shout out to all of my amazing Lyme friends. Seriously, I wouldn’t be able to get through the hard days (or any of the days) without all of you. It’s absolutely impossible to understand what someone with a chronic illness is going through unless you have one, too. Meeting other people who struggle with the same issues as I do has been beyond helpful. I know I can count on you all when sh*t hits the fan and I need to vent or need reassurance I’m going to survive (seriously). It’s beyond helpful to just have someone to listen. SO, THANK YOU A MILLION TIMES OVER! <3


I took my latest lDI dose on Tuesday 8/25, 11c. I didn’t choose the best time to take it as I took it the same week as a full moon (8/29). DUMB! My symptoms always pick up a few days before a full moon but I also believe I flared a bit from the LDI.

If you all recall, at the end of May/beginning of June I did a series of LDI doses. I started at 15c and every week after that I did 1c lower until I hit a dose that made me feel good. I took 11c right after a week vacation in California and I felt pretty good the next day. I wasn’t sure if it was the LDI or if it was just me feeling rejuvenated post-vacay. So the following week I took 10c, just to find out. Well, that made me flare! I was exhausted. So we decided 11c it was.

I’ve waited the 8 weeks and just repeated that 11c BUT we increased the amount of antigen in the formula. This may sound confusing. It was the same c (strength) but stronger antigen AKA less “filler” in the formula and more of the 11c in the dose. This may be what caused my flare from this round.

A flare for me has meant being even more tired then usual (really, is that possible?! Apparently), trouble falling asleep (ugh really? BUT I’M TIRED!), headaches, tummy troubles (also, is that possible, my stomach is already a mess?!), increased anxiety, and just feeling off.

We will see what my doctor has to say when I go to see him in 2 weeks. As always, I will keep you all posted. I get a lot of emails about how LDI is going and if I’ve seen improvements. Honestly, I haven’t seen improvements form the LDI…yet. LDI is a process. I know all of Lyme treatment is a process but LDI takes time to figure out dosing and once you do it takes many doses to feel improvements. So, there won’t be a quick or easy answer and you all will have to bear with me through this process :).


I’ve also begun bee venom therapy in the past month. I had a pretty strong reaction to it so instead of going full on we have to desensitize me. This means starting with just one bee, doing taps, and building up slowly. Once I am able to handle tapping from about 10 bees, I’ll be able to do set-ins, and then full stings.

Bee venom has an amazing amount of antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, and healing properties. It is one of the only things that can get inside (in-between) cell membranes where the Lyme hides. BVT can be healing in a number of chronic illnesses from MS to arthritis to Lyme and beyond.


Last but not least, I have also added procaine injections into my regimen. That’s right, I get to give myself nightly injections. Procaine is supposed to help calm and reset my overactive nervous system. I am doing the injections in my abdominal area in an effort to get my digestive system to relax. I’m not sure anything will ever help my digestive system (unless I can get a transplant!) but I’ll keep trying.

If you have any questions about the treatments I’m doing, feel free to leave a comment or contact me!

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Homemade Vanilla Cinnamon Cashew Milk

I know there are a lot of cashew milk recipes out there but there isn’t one on my blog :). I recently posted the picture below on my Instagram “> and had some feedback for the recipe. So, I decided to post the recipe on my blog as easy access for you all. I’ve recently become obsessed with making homemade nut milks because 1) It’s super easy 2) They are so delicious and creamy 3) There aren’t all those nasty, unhealthy additives like in store bought varieties 4) You can make all sorts of flavors!

So let’s get to it. Homemade milks allow you to adjust flavoring and sweetness to your liking so take all the flavoring ingredients I post below with a grain of salt, adjust according to your lovely taste buds!

Homemade Cashew Milk
Makes about 6-8 cups

2 cups organic, raw cashews
4-6 cups of water (less for thicker and creamier milk, more for a thinner milk)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 dates

Soak your cashews for at least four hours or up to overnight in filtered water (store soaking cashews in fridge). Drain and rinse thoroughly.
Place cashews and all remaining ingredients in a high speed blender (I use a Vitamix). Blend on high for 1-2 minutes until everything is well blended, smooth, and creamy.
Strain milk through a fine mesh strainer or nut milk bag (I’ve found that cashew milk doesn’t create much pulp compared to, say, almond).
Store in glass mason jars in the fridge for up to 1 week.


Why I Call Myself a Lymie

There is a divide within the “Lyme world.” There are those who refuse to associate with Lyme, call themselves a Lymie, or define themselves by there illness. Then there are those who 100% define themselves by their disease and would consider nothing else then to be called a Lymie.

I understand both sides. When you are so sick you can’t even lift your arm because of the pain, you feel so incredibly lost that you don’t know what else to associate yourself with other then your disease. I think some people are just more positive about the whole situation or they have many other things to associate themselves with or they have an amazing support system or they’ve been lucky enough to where they haven’t truly suffered. Whatever the case may be, I get it.

I call myself a Lymie but I fall somewhere in between the two extremes (as many do). So why do I associate with my illness? Because it IS part of me. At least for right now. It doesn’t define me but it sure as hell feels like it tries to. I associate with this illness because I feel an obligation to. What I mean by that is this community of Lyme-fighters 110% needs advocates in the world. How many people and doctors don’t believe in chronic Lyme disease? How many sick patients are out there without a proper diagnosis? How many of us who ARE diagnosed are STILL suffering? I define myself as a Lymie to make a point. To let the world know I have suffered, I am suffering, and I will continue to suffer until progress in the medical community is made. I do it to let the world know there are 100’s of others just like me, worse then me, SCREAMING for help and relief and progress.

I spent years in pain and sick, searching for a diagnosis. So yes, I am a Lymie, a Lyme-warrior, a Lyme-fighter. I want the world to know how hard I have fought the system to get a proper diagnosis, to get my health back. I want the world to know how much of a battle this disease is BECAUSE of how abused and corrupted our medical system has become. I want people to know how much I’ve suffered. Not because I want pity, but because I want people to understand how much this “easy to treat and hard to get” disease can take from your life!

I don’t call myself a Lymie to make people feel sorry for me or to feel sorry for myself or to drag myself into the depths of this disease (although sometimes I go there, don’t we all?). I do it to make a point. To bring awareness. To support others in this battle. I’ve put up one hell of a fight to get where I am today and I want everyone (especially the medical community and insurance world) to know that. To know how brave people with Lyme actually are. I want to be the face, the voice, the advocate for those who can’t work, who are bedridden, who have lost friends and family because of this illness. Lyme isn’t a joke and it can’t be treated with just 2-4 weeks of doxycycline.

Do you call yourself a veteran because that’s all you associate with? That’s all you are? No, you do it because it’s a huge part of your life. You fought a giant battle and you probably have scars or medals or insane stories to show for it. We honor you for your bravery. Well, I fought a damn huge battle myself. Against my own body. Want to see the scars? Or hear the stories? I have them. You can call me a veteran if you want, I’ve been brave enough to keep fighting this battle every single day and to keep myself alive through it all. Lyme disease is a large part of my life, every day revolves around treatment and pills and how I feel. It doesn’t define me but it IS a huge part of who I am, how I’ve gotten to where I am today, and what I’ve learned.

I’m not saying you should fall into the trap of your disease or only associate with the negatives in your life, but if you have a chronic illness, it is part of who you are. It’s okay to connect with it, to identify with it. Sometimes that can make it easier to understand and live with, rather then trying to continually push it away and make it this foreign, frustrating thing that has taken you over. Accepting your illness is important for recovery, it allows you to come to terms with it, acknowledge it, and figure out how to move forward. I am still working on this, it isn’t easy. The more I’ve tried to push it away, the harder it is for me to mentally cope because I become angry at Lyme (which is totally okay to do, too) rather then work with it. And those negative emotions towards your disease can actually make it worse and cause flares (anger is a type of inflammation in your life and Lyme feeds off inflammation. Lyme also looks for any moment to pounce and when you are sad or upset or negative, it can weaken your immune system and allow Lyme an opening). I am coming to terms with Lyme by acknowledging I’m a fighter, a warrior.


I AM a Lymie. I’m proud of it. I stand up for everyone else who is suffering. I’m making a point.

And this is why I'm a fighter… because I had an IV line in my arm, straight to my heart, for 7 months.

And this is why I’m a fighter… because I had an IV line in my arm, straight to my heart, for 7 months.

Oh, you take a multi-vitamin and fish oil? Add 50 more pills to that and 7 tinctures. Now you're close to my level.

Oh, you take a multi-vitamin and fish oil? Add 50 more pills to that and 7 tinctures. Now you’re close to my level.

Why do you call yourself a Lymie (if you do)? Let me know in the comments!

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Detoxifying Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie

I’ve been really into smoothies for the past few months. I’m not a fan of super sweet, all fruit smoothies and if you have a chronic illness like Lyme disease you really shouldn’t be drinking those types of smoothies too often. The sugar content of an all fruit smoothie is both inflammatory and will feed the Lyme bugs so I’ve had to find ways to make my smoothies nutrient packed but still tasty.

Although this smoothie takes a little bit more effort then throwing 3 ingredients into the blender, it is totally worth it! It contains both ginger and turmeric for anti-inflammatory effects and cilantro, lemon and lime juice, and greens to help detoxify.


Detoxifying Anti-Inflammatory Smoothie

Serves 1


1/4 cup full fat canned coconut milk

1/4 cup almond milk (or replace with more coconut milk or non-dairy milk of choice)

1/2 cup cold filtered water

1/4 tsp. ground turmeric

1 tsp. grated fresh ginger root (can replace this with 1/4 tsp. ground ginger)

1 tsp. maca powder (optional)

1 scoop protein powder of choice (optional)

1 small handful (1/4-1/2 cup depending on how strong you want the flavor) fresh cilantro

1 large handful spinach

Juice from 1/2 a lime

Juice from 1/2 a lemon

1/2 frozen banana

1/4 cup frozen mango

It is easiest to prep all your ingredients. THEN throw them all in a high speed blender. The best order is to place the liquid first, then all the powders/spices and lemon/lime juice, then the spinach and cilantro, and finally the fruit. This allows everything to blend evenly. Turn blender on and let it whirl until all ingredients are mixed in and it is nice and smooth.

I top mine with local bee pollen which contains an amazing amount of nutrients, has natural antibiotic effects, and provides the body with sustainable energy. I’ve added it into my diet to help aid in healing from Lyme disease. Using local bee pollen can also help with allergies. So, even if you aren’t sick but you suffer from seasonal allergies, bee pollen can be a great natural way to boost your immune system to local allergens without using drugs or chemical filled allergy meds.


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Carrot Apricot Protein Bars (AIP, raw, paleo)

i’m a snacker. I don’t really like eating big meals during the day, it makes me lethargic (and we all know I’m already exhausted as is). I like snacks, they are more fun and it means you can eat more often. But I get tired of the usual… larabars, nuts, plain fruit. Store bought protein bars are filled with additives and sugar so those are out. And if you are following the paleo autoimmune protocol then I think snacking is EXTRA hard. I can only eat so much meat and, honestly, so many veggies. But it’s also not healthy to just eat a bunch of dried fruit all the time either (so much sugar!) so I wanted to come up with a snack bar recipe that had some protein, some veggies, and a little bit of sweetness.

NAILED IT! These bars pack a punch AND are protein-filled. They are different from the usual date-based snack bars/recipes out there and resemble carrot cake but are way more healthy and are AIP friendly.


Carrot Apricot Protein Bars (AIP/raw/Paleo)


4 large carrots

1/2 cup dried apricots

2 large dates

1 cup shredded coconut

1 scoop vanilla protein powder of choice

1 tablespoon coconut oil

2 tablespoons coconut flour (you can replace this with an extra scoop of protein powder instead if you’d like)

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. ground cinnamon

Soak your dried apricots and dates in hot water for at least 15 minutes.

While apricots are soaking, peel and cut carrots into chunks. Throw them in your food processor and shred. Once your apricots/dates have soaked, add them to the carrots and process until things start to get smooth. Add your remaining ingredients and process until everything is smooth. You may need to stop occasionally and scrape down the sides of your food processor.

The mixture should be a little sticky but not so wet you can’t handle it and it just sticks to your fingers. If it is too dry and falling apart (which it should not be but just in case) then add 1 tsp. at a time of the water you soaked the apricots in. If the mixture seems to sticky or wet then add a little extra coconut flour 1 tsp. at a time.

Line a baking dish (the size is really up to you, if you want thicker bars use a smaller 8×8 or 9×9 pan, if you want thinner bars use a 8×11 or larger. I’ve used all sorts of sizes and they all come out great ;) ) with parchment paper and scrape your batter into the pan. Use a spatula (or your hands) to spread the mixture evenly into the pan.


Place in the refrigerator for at least an hour until the bars are more solid. Cut them up into whatever size/shape you like and store in a freezer bag or airtight container. I prefer to store these in the freezer because 1) They last longer and 2) They will get nice and solid!



Perfect on the go snacking and taste delicious with nut butter spread on top (if you are not AIP). You can also feel free to add 2 tablespoons of chia seeds when making the bars if you can tolerate seeds. Just adds an extra boost :).

Let me know if you give these a shot how you liked them!


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