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Author Topic: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!  (Read 846 times)

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Offline BullSchnitz93

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Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« on: March 08, 2015, 10:14:32 PM »
I was recently tested HIV positive in October of 2014 and I have realized that, with this virus, I must make some lifestyle changes. I've quit smoking, I am drinking less and exercising more. I take my medicine every day as prescribed and it is working great. However, I also realize that a diet may be, not only helpful, but necessary. I am not overweight, so my goal is not to drop pounds; but I do need to be eating healthier. I don't make a lot of money, and these "all natural/organic" foods (foods indicative of the produce found at Trader Joe's, for example) are so expensive!!! Is there any way I can do this without breaking my wallet? Also, are there set diets for people with HIV?

Offline AusShep

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Re: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2015, 11:58:21 PM »
Stopping smoking, drinking less, and eating better are all great for anyone.  But, the only special thing you need to do for your HIV is continue taking your ARVs every day.

Don't go too far overboard and think you need to make 20 changes all at once and set yourself up for failure.  Taking your meds is the one and only thing that needs to become a permanent lifestyle change due to HIV.

Offline wolfter

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Re: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2015, 03:42:22 PM »
I often feel odd giving nutrition advice because of my own issues with food.  I worked with a nutritional expert a while back and rec'd some great insights.  I used to spend way too much money on natural/organic foods and avoided any foods that conflicted with my beliefs.

He pointed out that just because something is natural does equate healthy.  He used the analogy of radon.  We have some of the highest levels in the country and it's natural and certainly not healthy.  :)  Most products are totally safe with a little bit of prep. 

Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline mecch

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  • red pill? or blue pill?
Re: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2015, 03:51:53 PM »
I was recently tested HIV positive in October of 2014 and I have realized that, with this virus, I must make some lifestyle changes. I've quit smoking, I am drinking less and exercising more. I take my medicine every day as prescribed and it is working great. However, I also realize that a diet may be, not only helpful, but necessary. I am not overweight, so my goal is not to drop pounds; but I do need to be eating healthier. I don't make a lot of money, and these "all natural/organic" foods (foods indicative of the produce found at Trader Joe's, for example) are so expensive!!! Is there any way I can do this without breaking my wallet? Also, are there set diets for people with HIV?
Hello. Welcome to the Forums. Sorry you got HIV.
Do you know how long you had it before diagnosis?
How are your numbers?

If you have decent numbers, and if you have standard digestion, then I don't see why a special diet is necessary JUST because you have HIV.

If you are making changes to your diet, make them because you are a HUMAN and want a healthier diet. 

The thing that is taking care of your HIV is your drugs. I want to reiterate what others have said. It is a common misunderstanding that drugs, alcohol, diet, exercise, are somehow essential factors in doing well with HIV but really, not necessarily.  Its all about the drugs. 

Living well and feeling healthy, fine - pursue whatever diet you wish and that makes you feel fit and healthy for the long run.

Pay attention to wolfers comments.

You can buy cheap "whole" foods and no need to go to a hipster or bourgeois supermarket or get organic this or that.  Buy real food, fresh food, cook it fast, eat it, yum.

Do you have a grandma or grandpa who had a long life and a good diet?  Think about what they ate.  I try to remember what my grandma and great-grandpa ate, how they prepared it, etc. They all lived long lifes and died of natural old age.  Meets, veggies, some booze here and there.  All "real", from "scratch" - seasonal. etc.  I think many people can vastly improve their nutrition just going back to some old fashioned ways of shopping, preparing and eating.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2015, 03:56:15 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

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  • red pill? or blue pill?
Re: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2015, 04:02:00 PM »
And if you are still really interesting in organic foods and the politics of food supply, etc., then search for a non-profit food coop in your region. These are cooperatives which make a point of getting organic, or non-processed, or whole, or local, foods to their members and prices can be lower than stores for rich hippies.
Also see if their are farmers markets and make sure you go to them in summer and fall, especially.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2015, 04:04:48 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline wolfter

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Re: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2015, 04:20:40 PM »
I forgot to add the not in my sentence.  Natural does not always mean healthy.  :)
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline Almost2late

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  • Posts: 598
Re: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2015, 05:58:30 PM »
I was recently tested HIV positive in October of 2014 and I have realized that, with this virus, I must make some lifestyle changes. I've quit smoking, I am drinking less and exercising more. I take my medicine every day as prescribed and it is working great. However, I also realize that a diet may be, not only helpful, but necessary. I am not overweight, so my goal is not to drop pounds; but I do need to be eating healthier. I don't make a lot of money, and these "all natural/organic" foods (foods indicative of the produce found at Trader Joe's, for example) are so expensive!!! Is there any way I can do this without breaking my wallet? Also, are there set diets for people with HIV?

Hello and welcome.. like you I also quit smoking, slowed down the drinking to limited amounts of beer and wine on weekends and exercise regularly.. I strongly agree with Aushep in that remaining adherent to your arv's is probably the most important lifestyle change we pozzies can make..

Eating right is also pretty high on my list to staying as healthy as possible but shopping smart is a must being a regular working class person.. Avocado's and bananas are not part of the "dirty dozen" and I love them so I don't bother getting these organic http://www.organic.org/articles/showarticle/article-214 .. Also it helps if you buy your fruits when they are on sale organic or not.. Many mornings I'll eat a mix of plain oatmeal & plain yogurt with whatever berries are on sale, very cheap, healthy and yummy.. Also I drink lots of water, no sodas, no juices, if I feel like orange juice I'll eat an orange instead, its more nourishing that way and will also save you some money..

I do splurge on coffee though, love that trader joe's hawaiian coffee, $20 a can but better than starbucks.. I'm sure there's plenty of ways to save your doe and eat healthy.. Your definitely on the right track, good luck.




Offline BullSchnitz93

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  • Posts: 2
Re: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« Reply #7 on: March 22, 2015, 01:04:10 AM »
The last (first) time I got my labs done, my CD4 count was 546 and viral load was 175,000. I've been taking my meds religiously every day for two months so far, but somehow I feel like I'm "sicker than normal", to be put simply. I'm starting to think that maybe it's more of a stress thing than the actual virus; which we all know what stress can do to the body...:(

And thank you guys for the suggestions!

Offline AusShep

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  • Posts: 333
Re: Recently tested positive...Time for a lifestyle change!
« Reply #8 on: March 22, 2015, 12:11:03 PM »
I agree it sounds more like stress at this point.  It can take a while, but you'll get into the groove soon enough.  Are you on 3 month appointments with your Dr right now?  I'm sure you'll get a much improved viral load count in the next month.

Your CD4 count is good, so complications due to starting meds are very unlikely, and you don't mention any drug side effect symptoms.  So just keep up with what you're doing and don't stress yourself out by trying to change everything at once, just stick with your meds.

 


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