Shutterbug's Blog

Living with Multiple Myeloma in Hyderabad , India . Random musings .

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Raw Turmeric Vs Turmeric powder

I am in love with Turmeric, the Golden spice. A lot of research has been done on the health benefits of Turmeric and a lot of people the world over are experiencing positive results.

My being alive on this planet is primarily due to Turmeric.

Turmeric is widely being used to treat several illnesses from minor to major chronic illnesses of the body and the mind. There is a lot of information on the Internet.

Everyone is aware that prevention is better than cure but how many actually take the effort to be healthy.  We don’t even know what to do to prevent illnesses. With the kind of diet and pollution levels ,most people should be worried about ending up with some kind of illness, but are clueless as to how to prevent.

By consuming Turmeric we can greatly reduce and even delay the probability of occurrence of illnesses.

Almost all Indians consume Turmeric via their food . Turmeric powder is one of the key ingredients in most Indian recipes. However , the quantity and quality of the Turmeric powder that is used should be increased so as to get the maximum benefit.

Turmeric can be used in the form of a powder or as raw turmeric. It is preferable to use Raw Turmeric .

The store bought powders may be adulterated. It is best to prepare the powder at home using dried Turmeric root. First crush the root into smaller pieces and then grind it in your mixer grinder.

It is best if you can get hold of raw Turmeric root. You can also grow it in your garden.

Here is a link that tells you why –

This website has a lot of information on the health benefits of Turmeric.

Hope you too will benefit from this Golden spice.

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An update on my condition – Multiple Myeloma

It’s been 4 months since my Oncologist told me that I was ‘Technically Cured’of MM. ( I underwent Stem Cell Transplant also known as Bone Marrow Transplant in Jan 2012)
He had told me to meet him again after one year. I couldn’t believe what I heard. I had a question mark on my face and said ‘One year , Doctor ?’ and he repeated what he said.

Isn’t that the best thing to hear 🙂 .

I had got used to getting CBP, LFT and RFT tests done every month and sometimes once in three months in the last few years, along with a Bone Marrow test every 6 months.

And so, in the back of my head there was this question , what if something goes wrong during this one year. One year is a looong time . I expected he would tell me to get a few tests done regularly like CBP, LFT, RFT and to meet him only if any of the parameters were out of range. But he didn’t say any of that.

In my head I was telling myself that I will get these tests done anyway, even if my Oncologist didn’t tell me to.

So here I am , I just got these tests done after 4 months and the results are out.
Here are the current values of some of the important parameters :
Hb : 11.2 (11 – 16)
Creatinine : 1.0 (0.6 – 1.0)
Globulin Serum : 3.8 (1.8 – 3.6)
ESR : 60 (0-20)

I don’t intend to meet my Oncologist with the reports as I didn’t find too much abnormality in the reports nor any change in my general health condition.

I sent my reports via whatsapp to my Ayurvedic doctor. He felt the numbers were normal . I expressed my concern about ESR being high and was told that it will not reduce so soon. There were times when the ESR value was much lesser , around 30 sometimes. High ESR implies greater inflammation in the body. Will work on that.

He wanted to reduce my curcumin intake from 3 caps / 3 times a day to 2 caps / 3 times a day ( Each capsule contains 400 mg of curcumin) . This is actually good news. My doctor has more confidence on me than I have in myself . But , I was not ready and in no hurry to reduce the dosage  , so told him I would like to continue 3 caps/ 3 times a day for few more months. So glad he agreed 🙂 . I still feel like depending on Curcumin for some more time.

Some day I should be off Curcumin too and I am looking forward to the day when I will be 100% independent of any kind of support . The day when my mind and my body will be in sync :))

That’s all for now.
Will get the tests done again after another 4 months.

Life will go on while Fasting , Pranayama, Meditation , Diet , Exercise will continue to be a priority.



~Sarve Janaha Sukhino Bhavanthu ~


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Moringa Oleifera (Drumstick) Vs Cancer

My Ayurvedic doctor has now included another herb , Moringa Oleifera , popularly known as Drumstick.I will be using Moringa along with other natural herbs to help me combat Multiple Myeloma.


Drumstick is one of the regular veggies used in South Indian cooking. Frequently used in Sambhar and avial 🙂 . Also made into pickle.Tastes yummy once cooked but has a repulsive odour when raw. The leaves too are used in several recipes.

But not many know the powerful medicinal values of this tree. All parts of the tree including leaves, flowers, fruits, bark, roots, gum have medicinal properties.




There have been several studies to show the effectiveness of Moringa in killing cancer cells.

Here are a few interesting articles that I found

Want to Stay Cancer Free?
Let This Food do the fighting!

So , along with Curcumin , Ashwagandha and Neem I am now armed with Moringa to fight and kill the villains in my body 🙂

Do include more Moringa in your diet.


~Sarve Janaha Sukhino Bhavantu~



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My Inspiration

I met Dr Gayatri from Delhi on a whatsapp group started by Mr Rahul of

This group is for all cancer patients and their care givers.

One day in Apr 2015 I shared my experience with  turmeric in the forum.(details of the experience are in another post) . That was when Dr Gayatri mentioned that she too had used Curcumin prescribed by Dr Nitin , an Ayurvedic Doctor from Mumbai. We spoke over phone and she suggested that I get in touch with him on phone. Her voice was strong and energetic. Her story was very inspiring. She was detected with MM more than a decade ago and is now free from any type of medication since last few years after a lot if struggle that included two Stem cell Transplants and several surgeries.

I then spoke to Dr Nitin.
I have been using Ayurvedic medications prescribed by him, including curcumin , since then.

Before I met Dr Nitin I didn’t know where I could get Curcumin in India. I was using Haridra from Himalaya which is Turmeric and not Curcumin.

Thanks to Dr Gayatri for introducing Dr Nitin to me.

I have been doing quite well since then.
I would ask her a few doubts now and then and very patiently she would answer and guide me.

At times I would have certain doubts regarding ayurvedic medication and she patiently answered my questions. She also gave me the confidence and comfort to talk to Dr Nitin without any hesitation.

I met Dr Gayatri recently in Hyderabad. It was nice interacting with Dr Gayatri and her husband. I feel much more energetic after the interaction. The strength and poise in Dr Gayatri is amazing. She is deeply spiritual and her words are soothing and encouraging.
Thank you very much Ma’am.

She has been counselling a lot of patients for the last few years.

May God bless the couple.
Thank you Dr Nitin.


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Alternative Treatments for Cancer


miracle ahead

People with chronic diseases go for various treatments depending on the faith they have in a particular treatment.  Most use allopathy by default, as the duration of treatment is the fastest ,success rate is highest and the results are quick. Some follow a different treatment based on the experiences of their near and dear ones or when Allopathy has no solution or as a last resort.

But usually for cancers Allopathy is the first and foremost treatment that one opts for as the diagnosis itself happens in the third or fourth stage wherein the disease would have progressed to a large extent and Allopathy would be the best treatment. .

I didnt think of Alternative treatments for two years after I was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma . I started experiencing side effects of Chemotherapy in the third year and I began scouring the internet for other treatments.

Internet is full of articles on Alternative Treatments . Initially I didnt believe all that was written on various websites and was being said on youtube videos by patients. I found them ridiculous too. Always wondered how it was possible that people are getting cured of Cancer which is not curable . Not just ‘managing’ but they were getting ‘cured’ and have been living for decades without any Allopathic treatment. I felt that these people were just exaggerating , that they wanted people to watch their videos , knowing that many would be looking up , that they were just uploading these videos to get a lot of views/hits. There were websites which talked a lot about a cure but at the end of the page there is a link to a book with a price or some secret methods which confirmed my fears that people only wanted to make money by luring desperate patients.

I wanted to believe all this was true , that there is a way , but was not convinced.

I came across various articles on the reasons for cancer and a cure. Juicing, diet, exercise, detox , supplements, antioxidants , various high frequency protocols, immunotherapy , Ph therapy, effect of yoga and meditation for curing the disease and the reasons for cancer varied from DNA mutations to microbes to lack of Vitamin D , poor diet , stress etc. These are a few of the topics that I was reading and trying to digest . All the information was baffling.

Just when I relapsed , at the end of the third year after my Bone Marrow Transplant for Multiple Myeloma, I came across a blog written by Margaret , a patient with Smouldering Multiple Myeloma. She was using natural supplements and has been successfully ‘managing’ the disease for more than a decade. After reading her blog , all the information and videos that I had seen suddenly flashed across my mind and I began believing all that I had read and seen. Suddenly all of it made sense. I was desperate for an alternative solution.

I talked to my Oncologist if he could recommend any Ayurvedic doctor but he was unaware of any specialist in Ayurveda. Ayurveda is an ancient Indian mode of treatment  which uses natural herbs for curing various ailments. He didnt discourage me from using any alternative treatment and advised me to use ‘Tinaspora Cordifolia’ , a natural immunity boosting supplement.

I recommend everyone to do their own research. Once convinced one has to start incorporating one or more methodologies as per their faith and convenience. One needs to have faith in the treatment and should go all the way and follow the methodologies scrupulously.

I have almost given up food products made with sugar , milk , all purpose flour , rice and also reduced salt intake .All of these comprise a bad diet. These are the five white poisons that Ayurveda recommends to avoid.
I also read that cancer cells feed on sugar. I initially started taking supplements like Curcumin (in the form of turmeric) suggested in Margarets blog , started doing Pranayama and meditation , I also started taking ashwagandha , shigru , punarnava , garlic , had ginger decoction in the morning, eliminated most acidic foods  and lo and behold within three months my MSpike was down to Zero !!

It is nothing short of a miracle.

I was later referred to an Ayurvedic Doctor by another MM survivor and since then I have been using Curcumin and other natural supplements since last one year. Fasting is also part of my regimen. I have been encouraging the use of Curcumin to whomsoever I come across. Curcumin is an extract from turmeric .Turmeric is a spice that is extensively used in South Indian cooking and as a medicine in India for various ailments.

It is one year and 3 months since I started following the new regimen and my M-Spike is in control.

Talk to other patients and their caregivers who follow Alternative treatments make your own decision.

If there is a will to survive , a solution will appear out of the blue. Never give up !!

Have patience and the Miracle will happen.

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Hope is Real ! World Cancer Day , 4 Feb 2016


Rewind back to Oct 2011.

I enter this building in Apollo Hospital , Hyderabad,India for an injection.
On the building I see ‘Apollo Cancer Hospital’
At the entrance to the lobby there are banners of healthy and beautiful smiling people , a young girl with long hair and an older man saying ‘Hope is Real’.They must be Cancer patients who seem to be leading happy normal lives now . How can Hope be Real ? , what does that mean.. it is the chemo and radiation that helps people to prolong the life, i think to myself and move in.

Half my mind was in denial that I have Cancer. I shut the other half and just went about doing what I am told to do. No one around me uses the word Cancer , not even my Doctor , I mean Haemotologist. No one in the whole building ever used the most dreaded word . Hubby, Dad, Sister, brother, none of the nursing staff, no one utters the word even by mistake.Just like in the movies 😀 . Mom is totally ignorant. She appears normal . Dad must have told her that everything is OK with me. My son was totally ignorant.
Half my mind believes that I am getting treated by a Haemotologist rather than an Oncologist.The word Haemotologist stuck in my head since the day, when of one of the doctors doing rounds , comes to my room and casually mentioned that my reports are being seen by a Haemotologist. I had voluntary got admitted to Apollo to get tests done for my abysmally low Hb count. I was in the hospital for a few days when all the tests were being carried out, including a bone marrow test.

On the third day of getting admitted, the Haemotologist meets me and explains how my plasma cells are misbehaving.That plasma cells become antibodies , but the antibodies in my case are not doing their job and on top of that they dont die after a certain period , where as they are supposed to die. He makes it appear as if it is a mild problem with my plasma cells which is being rectified by giving a few injections .
I assumed that my doctor who is a Haemotologist sits in this building for some other reason and he has nothing to do with Cancer.
After a few such injections spread over two months , my doctor suggests that i shave my hair before we do the Stem Cell Transplant. No questions asked.The Haemotogist explains the whole process of the Transplant and I am excited to go through it all.
We plan a visit to Tirumala and offer my hair . Everyone knows that Chemotherapy causes loss of hair . Since I had very long hair I was advised to get a cut , but I continued to move around in denial.
That this is not Cancer but a similar kind of problem that is treated in a similar way to cancer. I was sure that this is a disease related to the immune system.That my immunity is low because the antibodies are useless.

I never ever looked up the words Multiple Myeloma for almost 2 years after my Stem Cell Transplant .
I , who immediately opens Google to learn more about anything and everything instantly over the smart phone, never had the courage to type these two words. I was reading news, accessing Facebook, Gmail, was watching cookery and gardening videos on YouTube , even looking at house plans and interior decoration, everything on the Internet but never could type those two words.
I was damn scared and shivered at the thought that I may be having Cancer but why is no one uttering that word if I have Cancer.
My Stem Cell Transplant was done during Dec2011/Jan 2012. I took rest for 6 months and joined work .
I then insisted that we should build our house , the house that we were discussing about with an architect and also drew plans just before i was diagnosed. We successfully built our house and moved in. I wanted to complete this project come what may, even if i would live in the house just for a few months. There was some doubt in the corner in my head, that I have Cancer and may not live long. I , my soul , had to leave my body in my house , come what may . That was the strong will power that got me going.
It is one and half year since we moved to our own house in which we now live.
The moment we moved into our new home ,I felt relaxed .Now that the mission was accomplished I had the courage to type those two words on Google.
The search for a cure began . I wanted to live but I didn’t believe what the people in those videos were talking about. That they got cured by following this and that method.
DEC 2014:
Come Dec 2014 and my Oncologist , yes by then I knew for sure that I had Cancer, declares that there is a relapse.
I shudder and then when he says that we can plan for another Stem Cell Transplant after 3 months, I take a breath. It’s been 3 years in Dec 2014 , since I had my first Transplant. So I may get another 3 years after I go for a second one.
I am back home and start getting mentally prepared for a second transplant. Paralelly I start scouring the Internet for more stories on getting healed and the methods of getting cured.
I see a divine blessing in the former of one Mrs Margaret , who had a detailed blog , who had MM too , and how she has been dealing with the problem for more than 10 years using Naturally occurring products like Circumin.
I read most of her posts and started taking similar medicines made by one of the famous manufactures of Ayurvedic products in India.

It’s been a year since I started using Ayurvedic medications and there is no sign of the disease and no Transplant either.
It is 4 years since I was diagnosed with MM.

Under the denial , there was a strong wish and hope to live . The statement ‘Hope is Real’ now makes a lot of sense.
It is the hope of wanting to live , the hope that one can beat cancer , a hope in Alternative medicine , a belief in what was being said by the people in those videos who said that were getting cured, a hope in the Divine, a hope that there is a way out, a hope that continuous research in Allopathy will result in a cure , a hope shown by cancer fighters like Lisa Ray who are leading a glamorous lifestyle.


I hope to tell more and more people like me to have Hope. Hope is THE cure !