While I was on active duty in the Navy, I developed a couple autoimmune and neurological issues that left me unfit for duty and unable to work. I was plagued by seizures, chronic pain, chronic weakness, digestion troubles, a compromised immune system, migraines, low blood pressure, fainting, massive confusion, memory difficulties, strokes, depression, self-doubt, and suicidal desires.
My health issues suddenly came on late 2005. In 2012, I was hospitalized for liver failure and pancreatitis after a nasty reaction to the 14th anti-seizure medication I was given to try. At that point upon receiving several links to blogs about people reversing their health using food as medicine, I asked my neurologist if we could try a more holistic approach. He laughed at me, saying a natural health lifestyle would just kill me faster. While in the back of my mind I was thinking that would be nice, I also felt that no stone should go unturned and I should at least prove those blogs wrong. Worst case, changing my dietary intake would do nothing. Best case, it would end my suffering one way or another.
So, I started a modified Paleo diet "designed" for people with autoimmune issues. And life backfired! My seizures slowed from 6+ a day to 2 each week. My migraines slowed down too. I also noticed I felt more physically capable, which was super impressive. I went from not being able to stand long enough to cook a meal, to actually being able to stand up while cooking and washing dishes. AND I was actually suddenly able to cook 3 square meals a day PLUS wash all the dishes in the same day!
That by itself was quite eye opening, and had me thinking... if removing prepackaged foods with questionable and toxic ingredients, what would happen if we kept the theme going and did a major overhaul to the personal care and cleaning products we use??
We ditched everything with a questionable ingredient, a toxic ingredient, and also items without sufficient labeling. We based most of our findings off of The Environmental Working Group's databases. That website is incredible at helping you figure out product and ingredient safety, and gives ratings on the safety of products. We stick to items rated 0-2. I also have a list of common personal care toxic ingredients I avoid too, if you want to check it out and compare it to what you're currently using.