Archives for: May 2006
I've been noticing a lot of new food allergies lately. You know, kind of like how pineapple can make your mouth numb? I've also had a lot of back pain. My diet wasn't great (at this point in the story), and I had been glutened fairly recently out of my own carelessness.
Ok, now, my back started tingling, like bugs crawling under my skin and then went kind of numb.
Within a couple days the same thing happened in my feet and lower legs.
By the time I went to my osteopath, the tingling was on my right shoulder. He said, "You may not need an adjustment, we need to do an MRI to rule out MS" Of course, I freaked out a bit, though I tried not to. That day the symptoms worsened, and I realized other symptoms I had or had previously experienced, and there were many. My strength and endurance started to leave, my face started to tingle and went numb, and I was afraid.
The moment I heard MS, I went back on board BTD with hypercompliance. I'm talking beef and greens, mostly greens, at all times. I can count on one hand the avoids and neutrals I have had over the last week, and it was less than a few grams total (and these are the lesser avoids, I won't even look at processed foods, restaurant rhoulette, corn derivatives or dairy again). I also made it a point to get out and walk with my boys every evening...didn't know if it would help, but with the numbness now travelling over my body, I wanted to enjoy life and feel the breeze on my face. Every time I kissed my children, I was concerned that I wouldn't be able to feel the kiss the next day. On night I woke up with the numbness in my upper legs for the first time, and some difficulty going to the bathroom. I freaked out once more.
Then, I had the crisis and the breakthrough. I found true north once again, and was determined to fight this. I prayed and got blessings from all around me. This helped me, I relaxed, and started to have a few more steps forward than back...kind of. Every time I felt better I was afraid to celebrate because I knew in an hour I might feel worse again. I cannot stand unpredictability, I want to know what's next!
6 days after the doc appt, I got in for the MRI. I hated waiting, but unless I was in terrible pain or paralysis, it wasn't considered an emergency.
Soon after the MRI I got a pretty bad case of diarrhea, but that's no biggie for me. This time I chalked it up to more fiber in my diet.
Next day I got word that the MRI was fine, and though this didn't necessarily rule out MS, it was promising. As long as I continued to get better, I wouldn't need more tests, just watch out for the symptoms in case there's a next time. More unpredictability and uncertainty!
When I started feeling worse again, taking more steps backward, I was determined to get to the bottom of all this. Could be gluten ataxia or celiac neuropathy, but my symptoms didn't quite jive with what little inforation I could find on both. Most like neuropathy, but isn't that just the extremities, not the face?
Google and search, over and over. Then I tried searching for facial numbness: broken nose? Nope. etc. etc.
What would be the right question to ask me at this point?
Ok, are you ready to ask me the right question? What did I fail to mention to my doctor, that might be important here? What would House ask (of course, once I was on the brink of death, for drama's sake)?
What foods gave me a numb mouth reaction?
Bingo! Shrimp and crab (one or both)
Shellfish Poisoning. With all the press and thoughts on allergies, I forgot about food poisoning, it's not something I had much experience with or thought much about.
Think pufferfish, fugu...well little did this inland-dweller know that all bottom-feeders can accumulate a bit of this toxin, or a similar one. So, moral of the story is, if you ever get tingling or numbness after eating any type of shellfish (and even some types of fish), go to the ER. I can't stand the thought that other people can go through this and worse. I never gave too much thought to my nervous system, but now I'll always be thankful to feel the breeze, a kiss, even a little discomfort now and then.
Here's the most informative link I could find.
When I said I felt my food was poisoning me, I wasn't kidding! I'm continuing in hypercompliance for at least 3 months, as I want to recover fast and stop stressing my body with any other poisons. Beneficials certainly are medicines too. I felt better after every beneficial, and worse when I hadn't eaten enough of them.
I don't know if I'll ever eat shellfish again, and you couldn't pay me ten million dollars to try fugu...
My compliance really dropped off a month or two before the baby was born, when I couldn't cook or exercise. That was followed by stress and more noncompliance and some stress eating. I can't believe some of the things I was eating, avoids are a slippery slope for sure! This time I'm not just promising to get more compliant, I've done it, I'm on the bandwagon travelling too fast to jump off without injury
Since last Wednesday, I'm eating mostly beneficials. My snacks are all beneficial/neutral veggies, beneficial fruit, or whatever beneficial/neutral protein I may have on hand. My meals are almost entirely beneficial, with lots of greens and beef. This time, cold turkey was the only way to go. I needed an instant re-alignment of my diet and appetite, among other parts of me. I am now a monk when it comes to food. Food's only and most important purpose for me now is to make me feel good, whole, and healthy. No other purpose for food matters anymore. I don't stress eat, because I don't feel sorry for myself, I feel powerful and calm. (See my prayer blog ;-)
I've also been exercising, pushing the stroller up and down hills, every night as the sun gets ready to set. It's fun and a good workout!
You know, I'm a do-it-yourself, self-sufficient kinda gal. I have pride and I'm proud of my pride but that is changing. Everyone reaches a point in their life when they realize they are not invincible, and they can't do it all themself. Many people reading this website are battling frustrating, frightening, health problems. Many people facing such problems come to a point where they realize they can continue to drag themselves down with "why me" and pointing the finger of blame anywhere it will point. Some rise above the writhing masses of misery, to a whole higher plane of existence.
Dr. D. has talked about being "the exceptional patient" meaning being that one in 20 that becomes whole again, that goes into remission. There is more to that than diet alone. Food is powerful, but there's so much more to healing. We all know there are lifestyle parts to the BTD: stress reduction, exercise, meditation, but how many actually do it?
Part of meditation is prayer. Letting go of our pride and asking for help. Letting go of those parts of us we'd rather not be part of us any longer. Science shows that prayer improves outcome and health. Whatever you believe, whatever feels right to you, believe it with all your heart, and express it, ponder it...live it! Ask for what you need, then trust in what you're given. Accept your role and purpose, and then you will feel a harmony within yourself that you may not have felt for a while. We are so much more than who we think we are. We are who we touch, and who we lift, the rest is of little consequence.
I'm no expert on prayer, it had been probably a decade since I truly sincerely prayed. Sure I asked for things now and then, but more like a child asks for candy, not like a believer. My body was in a state of discord, but now it is in harmony. Like my toddler when he has a hangnail, he'll cry and complain and whine and keep touching it, making it hurt more, but he won't let me help! It would be so easy for me to fix it, if he'd give me his hand.
Have a nice Sunday!
Ok, I'm really back on board now. My body and mind are tired of being poisoned by my cravings for unhealthy foods. I will never knowingly or willingly eat any milk or corn again!! I'm serious about that this time. It's not worth one indulgence to be thrown back into the realm of cravings and weird allergic or autoimmune reactions again.
When I cook, I do so compliantly. Then noncompliant snacks start calling my name. So today I started my TPS-cleansing diet and bought a whole bunch of fresh vegetables. These will be my only snacks for some time. I think it's high time I bought a deluxe juicer too.
Stay tuned for a thai chicken salad recipe...
1 1/4 cup quinoa flour,
1/4 cup sweet rice flour,
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup-1 cup water (usually on the 3/4 side of the range)
Ttir it together with a fork, knead it until no longer sticky (adding flour as needed) and let it rest an hour. Then shape it into tortillas. This dough is a bit softer than wheat dough, but very workable, even my son can make good tortilla shapes out of it, given enough extra sweet rice flour. I press these in a tortilla press then let them cook until bubbles start to puff up...yummmy! They taste like corn tortillas, but the texture is somewhat reminiscent of wheat tortillas.
Then comes the sauce. Rather than buying a can of sauce with bland ingredients at best, questionable ingredients at worst, it's easy to make your own! You can use sweet rice flour just as you would use wheat flour in this recipe
4 Tbsp Sweet Rice Flour
1/4 cup oil (grapeseed or other compliant oil)
2 Tbsp chili powder
2 tsp cumin (fresh ground if possible)
1 tsp salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Cups Hot water
1 small can tomato sauce (8 or 12 oz), or to taste depending on how mild you like it
minced hot peppers as desired
Brown the flour in a pan until it becomes somewhat fragrant (I never get it to turn brown, rice flour takes a while to accomplish that), add spices, add oil, with heat still on, slowly but steadily add the hot water. It may clump at first, but just keep stirring and adding more in and it becomes smooth. Once smooth, add tomato sauce, and simmer until thick enough.
From there, you can add beans, onions, whatever you like in your enchiladas, build them and smother in sauce, cook it 350 C for about 30 minutes. I don't use cheese and I find I don't miss it. Non-secretors can top it with avocado slices and sliced green onions when serving.