Dr. Martina Melzer, published: 01/02/2023
It is Easter 2019 and Elisabeth Kowal is working full time as a psychotherapist when she is hit by a serious infection, a chlamydia infection. She gets pneumonia.
After that, she can't get back on her feet. She thinks about a burn-out. She is familiar with such issues because she works in an acute psychosomatic clinic. And she has a lot of stress. She goes
to see a specialist in psychosomatics, six weeks after her infection. The doctor says, "You have ME/CFS." And he says, "You're going to be
That's the beginning of her recovery journey. In the video interview, Elisabeth Kowal names numerous things that helped her get better. But she also talks about the dark sides of ME/CFS. In the meantime, Elisabeth Kowal, who is, among other things, a nurse, psychologist and systemic therapist, works as a health coach and primarily accompanies people with ME/CFS (see below for contact). The video is in German. Please activate the subtitle to watch it in your language.
To the video interview:
Key points on recovery from the interview:
- Mindset: One of the first things she did was: post notes all over her apartment with positive phrases like "I'm going to get better" or "I can do this." She says, "We all want health." It's in us, she says, and you can do something for your health every day. Elisabeth has seen ME/CFS as her toughest school, a challenge, a teacher.
- Nutrition: The doctor recommended a TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) diet tailored to her. She also followed Dr. Sarah Myhill's nutrition tips, eating Paleo-Keto principles, doing interval fasting, eating high fat and low carbs.
- POTS, MCAS, HPU/KPU, cervical spine instability: she didn´t have POTS, but implemented measures such as eating more salt, drinking plenty of fluids, and wearing support stockings. She didn´t have MCAS, but found taking antihistamines helpful. She may have the metabolic disorder HPU/KPU (hemopyrrollactamuria/cryptopyrroluria) and is therefore eating accordingly. She also did appropriate exercises for potential cervical spine instability.
- Joe Dispenza: She informed herself a lot about what Dr. Joe Dispenza teaches about neuroplasticity. She built her own brain training program using his principles, visualized a lot, took in how it felt.
- Social support: Elisabeth did a "challenge" with a friend - each week they set goals and then discussed what they had accomplished and what they hadn't. Elisabeth had also started a support group. She says sharing with other sufferers was very important, as was social support overall.
- Mind-body techniques: Yoga Nidra, Yin Yoga, meditating, breathing techniques, foot massage, ear massage and other vagus exercises have assisted her in recovery.
- Other therapies (among others): Nutritional supplements such as vitamin B12 and magnesium helped her, she did chelation therapy, Rizol therapy, infusion therapy for the vagus nerve, EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), cold and breathing therapy according to Wim Hof.
Elisabeth's message: Breathe! Start with the breath. It is always available and connects to you and your nervous system.
Elisabeth fulfilled a lifelong dream after her recovery and moved to the Canary Islands!
This is how you can find Elisabeth Kowal (in German):
Translated with the help of DeepL
Important: The content on this page is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for talking to your doctor or other therapist. The content reflects my personal experiences, research and findings that have helped me and that I therefore want to share. However, in your personal case, completely different things may play a role and other things may help. Please talk to your doctor or therapist before making any decisions that affect your physical or mental health. Also important: I don't want to convince anyone of anything here. Rather, I want to point out possible ways that hopefully can help some people to improve or overcome their Fatigue or ME/CFS. This applies for Elisabeth Kowal too here.