I haven’t been feeling so well since the second week of September 2019; when the haze blew all the way from the burning forests in Indonesia all the way to Malaysia. For readers who are not from Southeast Asia, haze is pretty common here. Indonesia has been burning their forests for decades in the name of agriculture, killing thousands of animals and humans yearly.
The world is generally against terrorism and genocide. But every single giant organizations in the world turn blind eyes to this. Even world leaders kept their mouth shut. Why? If this is not terrorism, I don’t know what is. It’s a shame, really. But I’m not here to talk about the politics of it. I’m here to share with you my personal experience dealing with the haze this year; which is particularly bad.
When the haze started to hit Malaysian shore, I thought I’d survive it without falling seriously sick, as I did the previous years. I took all the necessary precautions, after all. Mask on, staying indoors, limiting outdoor activities, you know, the standard Ministry of Health’s template drill in dealing with haze.
Dealing with the effect of haze this year is particularly different. Instead of the usual breathlessness when the air pollution index shoots up, I felt as if I was poisoned instead. I didn’t notice it at first as the symptoms are really subtle but it got really bad as days gone by. From mere dizziness, I started to vomit acid and white bubbles like nobody’s business. I couldn’t eat or drink and whatever I tried to eat or drink will just be vomited out. Even my worst case of food poisoning in the past seems a breeze in comparison to this. Apart from constantly vomiting white bubbles, I felt dizzy and lost my balance to the point I couldn’t even walk without support. I practically walked like a drunkard for days and nearly collapse at that too.
I sought medical attention of course, but my doctor couldn’t figure out what’s wrong with me and passed it off as gastric and told me to just sleep it off. The doc gave me charcoal pills which had no effects whatsoever in easing my discomforts.
To say that I wasn’t impressed with my ‘diagnosis’ was an understatement. And so I chatted around with friends and apparently they too had similar symptoms since the haze started to thickens. We’re no expert but we can only deduced that while our doctors diagnosed us as having gastric problem, it might not be the case. There’s more to just “gastric”. How can it be? A group of people who are perfectly healthy, took care of diet and whatnot developed gastric out of the blue? We must have inhaled too much air pollutants or accidentally consumed water that has been contaminated with dangerous particles from the haze.
Here’s sharing with you what I did to nurse myself back to health:
1. Drink young coconut juice and eat the flesh after every meal. The coconut juice works like a charm. It gives instant rehydration. Even plain water and oral rehydration salt does not work as well coconut juice.
2. Take only plain and soft food like porridge during meal times.
3. Eat more vegetables and fruits in between meals as snacks. I go for sweet and juicy kind of fruits; watermelon, honeydew melons, hami melons, kiwi, apples, guava, papayas and grapes.
4. Include vegetable soup in every meals.
5. Take yogurt drinks/probiotics. It help in easing the tummy discomfort. In my case, it works way better than the charcoal pills given by doctors.
6. Exclude tea and coffee. They’re diuretic and is no good if you need to keep your body well hydrated.
7. Avoid meat or poultry. They take longer to digest and can easily cause discomfort.
8. Avoid newly caught seafood during haze priod. There are possibilities that they are contaminated with dangerous particles from the haze too.
8. Take shower regularly to maintain optimal body temperature and to avoid getting a fever.
9. Carry mist bottle with me all the time and spray the mist on the face whenever I feel hot or dizzy.
You know, there’s nothing much we can do but detox to stop our body from getting sicker and sicker during haze period . All we can do is detox and nourish our bodies with nutritious food to aid recovery. I’m all for seeking medical attention when you’re sick. But if it doesn’t work, you might want to try what I did to help your body to recuperate.