A Little piece about Rika
By Monika M., photographer, NYC
(Living with Lyme for 3 yrs. doing great in the last six months with the guidance of my general doctor and Rika.)
Rika’s vast knowledge about chronic Lyme and how to support the mind and body via diet, supplements, herbal and/or homeopathic has changed my life for the better. During our meetings Rika helped me understand what is happening in my body and how I can take charge of my body and heal. She is not just an advisor; she is deeply committed to your well being as a friend would be; and that is how I regard her. When in doubt I look through my notes and find an answer, which Rika has provided me with. And least I forget, the chant about Drainage Tone, you’ll have to ask her yourself. I can’t sing her praises enough!
By Angela, NJ
I have experienced digestive troubles since I was 12 years of age. I’ve tried the macrobiotic, vegan, and vegetarian diets but they also affected my hormones badly and they did not help me feel any better. At that time my doctor said I had IBS. I continued having symptoms such as constipation, diarrhea, hemorrhoid pain, and bloating. I was so glad when I started working with Rika. After our consultation we started on elimination of high FODMAP foods and high histamine foods as I was experiencing SIBO-associated symptoms. I also stopped taking my probiotics that contained inulin. After a short while of food eliminations I felt so much better! No more constipation and diarrhea! My hemorrhoid pain decreased and I was able to have bowl movements with no pain. We then added proteolytic enzymes that made me feel a lot better and Rika suggested that I add additional Red Root for lymphatic drainage. At present I am able to tolerate high FODMAP foods and I experience no more pain when having bowl movements. When I went to see my Gastroenterologist, I mentioned that I was consulting with a functionally-minded nutritional health coach. He remarked, “Your nutritionist must be really smart for having you eliminate high FODMAP foods!”
Linda H. in upstate NY
My upstate Lyme-treating doctor and nurse practitioner recommended Rika to me. I was told that Rika works with complex digestive cases regarding nutrition, especially within the scenario of chronic Lyme. I was misdiagnosed for quite some time, and it has been 18 years since I first became sick with Lyme.
In 2014, my ENT diagnosed me with esophageal reflux and he prescribed acid blockers. They seemed to work, and my voice began to sound clear again. But, after 60 days I suffered a horrible rebound and ended up seeing two nutrition specialists, neither of whom helped. I also saw two GI doctors. I did not want more medications and I was pretty sure that any additional medication would create a problem. Finally a gastro-enterologist diagnosed me with SIBO.
SIBO wrecked my voice. Vocal hoarseness made it impossible for me to sing or even hum for over three years. At one point my speaking voice became so croaky and distorted that is was unrecognizable to family and friends over the phone. The vocal problems were in addition to acute abdominal pain, never-ending burping and gas, and sleep disruption.
I was desperate to find a protocol that would work for me. When Rika and I started working in November, I could hardly hum three tones. Everything else was gone. Being unable to sing was a great loss to me. I am now in my fifth month with the SIBO diet and I find my voice returning. I now have eight notes!
As tough as the SIBO diet is – and it is tough- it gets results. Rika takes her time to explain the different stages required, especially while also not wanting to stir up a herx. After only three weeks of the diet, the pain lessened. The giant frog burps began to calm down. The improvement in sleep has improved the quality of my life. I’ve had some setbacks along the way, but the improvement in my voice is enough to keep me going. Many people have remarked how much better I sound, and I have been able to gain weight. That, plus generous servings of nut butters (After all, I am low weight.)
I hope to spread this info to other people who are suffering and not getting anywhere with standard medical treatment. If someone is willing to commit to the food regimen, they will see improvement. I am grateful that I contacted Rika, and we are still working together. Months, or even a year, of food restrictions is better than many years of pain and physical limitation.
Good news — my menstrual period began today. Feel so happy and relaxed… P.S. I can’t even tell you how glad I’m today!!! This is all your great job! Thank God I met you!
From A. in NJ
I am feeling so much better than when I initially saw you. I feel like my Lyme is gone (for now at least) and I have been taking it easy at home and getting a lot of rest before I go back to school in two weeks. I considered getting the urine and saliva test that you recommended but also noticed you recommended them in case I wasn’t feeling better but I am feeling okay. Other than that, trying to watch my diet as well as sleeping habits (going to sleep much earlier while I am home from school) and nutrient/ supplement intake.