Cheapster – what’s cheaper?

A friend of mine and I launched a small little project today: an app to help you compare product costs in terms of price per unit. It’s free, take a look on the App Store.

My wife has been asking me to make this for some time, so, this is for her 🙂

Cheapster - what's cheaper? screenshot

Sketch to UIView

Recently, a friend of mine and I started meeting up for 1-day “hackathon” projects. He designs, I code.

It wasn’t too long before I had the desire to automate my job, which, I felt, was simply a matter of making Sketch mockups come to life.

I enjoy writing views in code, rather than using interface builder. I wanted something that would “export” Sketch mockups into UIView code.

The first task was to get the data out of Sketch, which appeared to be easiest using Sketch Plugins. Sketch plugins use CocoaScript, which is similar to cycript, which I’m quite familiar with (at least using Objective-C methods) from iOS reverse engineering. I decided to start with just exporting data, then work on generating UIView code later.

This is the “Sketch to json export” script I came up with.

Select a layer, like an artboard, and run this script. You’ll see a .json file popup on your desktop.

I can post the python script that reads the .json and generates code later if there’s interest.

Starting the Cowden Protocol

Just thought I’d note that today I’m starting the Condensed Cowden Protocol: http://www.nutramedix.ec/ns/lyme-protocol

Tests for Lyme Disease have low accuracy, but I’ve suspected for some time that I might have it, so I’m going to give this a shot. Antibiotics this late in the game (assuming I have it) seem to be fairly ineffective, from my understanding of the research. I’ve actually been taking the detox herbs for a few days, today was my first with 1 drop of Samento and Banderol. Perhaps it’s my imagination, but it seems something is happening in my head already. (Here’s the schedule).

Update Feburary 24th, 2016:

I’m doing amazingly better. This protocol is super effective. If there’s a chance you might have Lyme, I recommend just buying the Nutramedix products and starting ASAP, you’ll know within a couple days if it’ll help you or not. I’ve gone a little over the recommended dose up to 35 drops for the microbial defense herbs. Dr. Cowden said somewhere (don’t recall the source) that you can double to 60 and it should help clear things out faster.

Update April 4th, 2016:

Past week has certainly been hard. I appear to be having some serious Herxheimer reaction/dieoff symptoms. I think I was slacking off a bit too much on drinking water. Yesterday I did multiple glasses of Burbur/Pinella and Parsley/Pinella combinations, and I could feel that working in my head. I put a full dropper of each into a glass of water and sip it down. I need to impress upon myself that there’s basically no limit to how much of the detox herbs I can take, they’ve been animal tested in huge amounts with no negative affects. I’ll try and make myself take more than before.

Update May 14th, 2016:

I’m currently on day 101 of the program. I’m certainly making progress, but, not as quickly as I’d hoped. This is pretty standard though. It’s hard for me to be patient when I feel like I’ve already lost a good 3 years of my life to mysterious illnesses that fell through the cracks of our broken medical system.

Anyway, I am doing better. A couple weeks ago I started doing LLLT with a device from LazrPulsr. They have a “Lyme Recovery Treatment Record“, which I was generally following, but now I mostly just to the “Lyme #684” and “Bacterial Infection #620” programs over and over. #684 almost always have a great impact on how I feel, generally in a positive way. I can feel it doing something in my head, it feels like my brain is slowly expanding in an odd sort of pleasant and relieving way. I really wish I knew what exactly it was doing, but it’s certainly helping, so I’m not at all worried. I hypothesize that it’s helping my brain better handle the toxins released by dead Lyme spirochetes, but, it could also be helping my immune system kill them, so I have no idea really. LLLT really needs to be studied more. There’s a place in NH that claims to have good results with LLLT, but I’d love to hear some patient testimonies (besides the ones on their site).

I’d like to note that I once took drops of the Cowden protocol, I don’t remember which exactly but I’m certain it’s irrelevant, and then went on a walk. I walked about 5km at a fairly brisk pace. I started feeling my typical brain fog, as a result of the herbs doing their work in killing the bad stuff, but after I got back, it continued to get worse. I reached a point where I had a splitting headache. After googling for “Lyme exercise” I confirmed that yes, lots of people experience discomfort after exercising with Lyme, because it helps our body kill off the spirochetes. But, I had gone on plenty of walks, or bike rides, or runs, before. The difference was I took the “killing herbs” right before I went on a walk, and my increased blood-flow helped them get to places in my body they might not reach as well when I’m inactive. I’m careful with how I take the drops and exercise now, because serious Herxheimer reactions can kill.

Liposomal Melatonin

I’m excited to try out some Liposomal Melatonin, it’s apparently beneficial for much more than just sleep. I have heavy metal toxicity, poor digestion, too much EMF exposure, etc… required reading on melatonin: http://www.sophiahi.com/homemade-liposomal-melatonin-for-sleep-and-brain-detoxification-by-dr-sarah-carnes/ and http://betterhealthguy.com/incurables

  • I can never fall asleep right after getting in bed. It takes hours sometimes. Then, when the sun comes up bright an early, I can’t sleep through it. I rarely feel like I rested well. Even if I go to bed right when it gets dark, it’ll take me a few hours to fall asleep.
  • I’m certainly deficient in Melatonin, for a few reasons…
  • Melatonin is critical for brain detoxification. Since I’m apparently loaded with heavy metals, I’ve likely gone through my natural supply of melatonin before the end of the night.
  • I’m not exposed to enough sunlight, which is necessary to create melatonin. Awesome article on this and more: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2014/05/08/heavy-metals-glyphosate-health-effects.aspx
  • I can never remember my dreams. This is probably a good indicator I’m not sleeping well. I often am laying in bed in the middle of the night, and suddenly realize that I haven’t been sleeping for several hours.
  • The problem is that it’s a self-promoting cycle: they are sick partly because they can’t detoxify, but they can’t detoxify because they’re sick. Getting people to sleep long and well—not a pharmaceutical-induced knock-out, but real sleep, including dreams and waking well rested—is strongly healing.” – from the first link in this post

However, when I first take it, I might experience standard “detox symptoms”: “When someone takes liposomal melatonin and has problems sleeping this is more likely related to mobilizing toxins in the brain.” (link) Also from that article “The brain does not detoxify with glutathione; melatonin is the key.” This sounds a little hyperbolical, but it pushed me over the edge into ordering some. Will report how it goes.

Update

I’ve been on liposomal melatonin for a couple weeks now, this is some serious stuff. I started out with just two squirts (I’m using the one from DaVinci Laboratories of Vermont), and now I do sometimes 20-25 squirts a night. I normally feel clearer when I wake up, and I remember some part of my dreams every morning. Twice I’ve woken up with a bad headache, which was probably a result of the “detox effect” on my brain. Both times the headache went away after a few hours, taking liposomal glutathione seems to help (and Organic Germanium, I need to write a post on that sometime). Dr. Klinghardt, my recent most favorite practitioner, mentioned you might wake up feeling bad (but to be clear: this is good, your brain is eliminating all the junk so it can perform better). I recommend watching this video from him at a recent autism conference. Klinghardt spends half his time on kids, half on adults, and his discoveries are quite interesting. Best of all, you can normally treat yourself using natural herbs/remedies. One key takeaway from this is the 9 parts melatonin to 1 part glutathione needed to detoxify your brain (I don’t remember exactly which part of the video he talks about that, but I recommend watching the whole thing). I’ve been taking glutathione by the bucketload and it sure helps, but it does seem melatonin is having an even bigger impact.

Accutane messed me up

I took Accutane in my 3rd semester of college, and it really messed me up. I don’t think I’ll ever quite be the same as before I took it.

No one should take Accutane (the marketing name for Isotretinoin). I do not recommend it. Your acne is a result of a deeper cause, possibly dysbiotic gut flora or a result of gluten/carbs/candida.

I’m still discovering all of the negative affects Accutane had on me. I’d like to build a more comprehensive list, but we’ll start small for now. Thanks to Alex from The Superman Diet for finding many of these links.

B Vitamins:

Accutane probably causes gluten sensitivity. I was not sensitive to gluten whatsoever before taking Accutane, I became extremly sensitive after taking it:

Accutane kills your libido (I can confirm):

It messes up your brain:

A handheld laser fixed my Gluten Sensitivity

I used to be extremely sensitive to gluten. A cracker the size of my fingernail was enough to give me a headache for hours.

I did a ton of research on why this might happen. I found a lot of hopeless people, but no real answers. It seemed there was no cure for gluten sensitivity. The gluten-free industry in the US is a billion dollar business. I clearly wasn’t the only one with an issue.

If you google on gluten sensitivity, you’ll find a lot of info on “leaky gut”. Your gut leaks, bad stuff gets into your blood that shouldn’t, next thing you know, it’s causing problems all over your body. Your liver gets overworked, you feel tired, all your energy is drained, your immune system reacts. Or overreacts. It’s not really clear to me exactly what it does, but inflammation happens. For me, it was happening in my brain. I’d eat something with gluten, and boom, instant brain fog. 15-20 minutes later I was useless on the couch.

Food was a minefield: gluten is everywhere. It’s many places where it shouldn’t be. French fries, milk shakes, those delicious Blue Diamond Cashews. Of course, in many cases, gluten isn’t intentionally inserted into foods. Even foods that are “gluten free” generally have trace amounts, sometimes enough to trigger a reaction. I used to think the “gluten free” thing was another useless fad. Most healthy people might not notice an immediate reaction to gluten. However, it still appears gluten is bad for you.

Anyway, I started by targeting the “leaky gut” issue. I found posts like this one useful. Another high hit on google seemed to make me think this was the root of my problem. It was. It probably still is. I did all those things, but it didn’t help.

I plan on writing more about this, but I want to get the info “out there”. Long story short, I went to this semi-rundown chiropractor place on the north side of Atlanta (I flew back “home” from Kyiv in hopes of fixing my health issues), this guy shined a laser on me at various points on my skin, and the next day I was no longer gluten sensitive. The following day I ate an entire Chick-fil-a Chicken Sandwich. I hadn’t had one in longer than a year (and they’re my favorite). I ate it, then sat and waiting for the headache to show up. No headache. Wow.

It’s called “low level laser therapy”, or “cold laser treatment”. The idea is that you have a low wattage laser, with a wavelength at a certain size in nanometers, that turns on and of really fast. And it “reprograms” your immune system. lol. You’ve got to be kidding me. Before trying it, I googled. Quackwatch. Looks like this is a scam. Of course it’s a scam. How can that be? I’ve never heard about this. This is too good to be true. Like all things that are too good to be true, it’s probably not true. Google some more, some comments say it worked. Weird. More googling. Total scam.

I researched this for hours. Normally on the internet, I can google something like “last element in list python”, happily click on the first StackOverflow link and get the definitive, correct, 100% certainly true answer. For most things, it’s easy to get a good answer. But this was different. I didn’t feel like I could find “the truth”. I got to a point where it didn’t matter how reputable an author was, or how many credentials they had, something just wasn’t right. The only way to know the truth for myself, was to try it myself. I’m laying on the coach with a headache and brain fog, unable to code or do any meaningful work. But I can mindlessly google and sort-of retain what I read. What I’m reading has suddenly become quite befuddling.

Some lady recommended this to my mom, that’s how I found out about it. The “practitioner” was a chiropractor. Hm, chiropractors are normally involved with fishy alternative medicine. Red flags went up. However, a chiropractor certainly fixed some of my back problems I had when I was a kid, so one of them must at least know something. I call him up. He’s on a trip to China, won’t be back for a few weeks. Leave a message. I read about his “low level laser” machine on his site. I find the company that makes it, Biolight Technologies. “Bax Aura PTL II”. This is getting more amusing by the minute.

They have a find a practitioner page. I type in my zip code, no results. Increase the search radius. “Scott Ackerman“. Ok, let’s check him out. I give him a call. He answers the phone. Wait a minute, how often do you call a medical place and the guy who will treat you answers the phone? I tell him I have gluten sensitivity, fatigue, pollution gives me headaches. Tired all the time. Can’t get any work done. Do you have that laser machine? Yeah? It works? Really? More than once in that conversation I almost started laughing. You can fix my gluten sensitivity, which apparently tons and tons of people have, for $75? This is legitimately entertaining. I’ll be there tomorrow.

Atlanta traffic. We show up a bit late. No worries. There’s hardly anyone else there. We fill out some paper work, this time I’m realizing I’m checking almost all the boxes for all problems. I mean, ALL the things. We talk, this guy is still serious about the probability of this fixing me. We go into another room. This thing looks like a TV remote control from the 90s. There’s a book full of “protocols” it comes with. He says it can do everything from helping you quit smoking, to relieving pain. Whatever, bro. Laser me up scotty. (this guy’s name actually is Scott).

He takes me to some other room. Take off your watch, he says. And take your iPhone out of your pocket. Here, put it right outside the room. Probably not necessary he says, but no need to have the radiation. Right. Good thing I have “Find my iPhone” turned on, because that’s about to get stolen.

He flips through some pages in a book to the sensitivity page. Presses some buttons on the laser. It’s really looks just like a laser pointer. It’s red. He lets the laser light dot shine on me for several seconds in various places, “acupuncture points”, he says. He shines it on several points in formations multiple times. “You might have some sniffling tonight, like you’re about to get a cold”. I feel the same. You can’t feel the laser light on you, it’s like a 5 watt laser anyway. I’m unsure what to think.

Later that night I felt the sniffling. Weird. Next day I feel much better. Way better. (The feeling better lasted about two weeks, more on that later. This didn’t cure all of my problems by a longshot). I eat a small part of a homemade muffin. Haven’t had a muffin or any “real bread” in more than a year. It’s delicious. No reaction. Next day, chick-fil-a, no reaction. Wow. To this day, I can still hardly believe it.

Whatever low level laser therapy is, it seems like it needs to be researched more. It’s serious stuff. I’d love to see competing companies, more serious studies, and more public knowledge. There are certainly many huge companies who’s success depends on this knowledge not getting out. I’m not a conspiracy theorist, but it’s something to just be aware of.

If you have gluten sensitivity and want to cure it, low level laser therapy worked for me. This was the company that created the device I used. It seems there might be alternatives out there. It’s insanely cheap and fast. This didn’t cure my numerous other issues, but I’m still no longer gluten sensitive. I also used to have “multiple chemical sensitivity”, or MCS, the laser cured that too. I’d like to add more to this post in time, but for now, if gluten is killing you, try this.

First

Hey everyone,

I’ve started several blogs before, but never kept up with them. I don’t expect this one to be any different. I’m starting this because I’d like to document a few things I’ve learned.

My passion is programming, but I’ve recently been dragged into doing extensive amounts of research on health. My brain hasn’t been able to function at its peak ability for quite some time, perhaps even a few years. When my performance declined, I started with the obvious: good eating, exercising, and sleep. As my health continued to decline despite my best efforts, I was force to search deeper.

I’ve been cured from gluten sensitivity. I’m no longer as sensitive to pollution or chemical smells. I’ve pooped out parasites and overgrown yeast. I’m currently dealing with heavy metal poisoning, candida, chronic fatigue, dysbiotic bacteria, brain fog, inability to concentrate, general toxicity, and a number of other issues. The good news is that I’m on the road to recovery. That bad news is that I’m still really messed up, and I have a long way to go.

I’m sure there are a number of people who have my same issues, but they don’t know it yet. They might not ever discover what their “root cause” is. I’ve done ton of googling and read numerous personal blogs, many of which have helped me considerably. Lots of sites are click-baity and don’t contain much good info, other sites have been difficult to find but goldmines. My hope is that I’ll write some helpful health related info, and as I function better, I’ll get more involved in technology again.

Aaron