Archive | July, 2010

I’m wavering already, and I haven’t even started…

31 Jul

Getting ready for the big event – one month tomorrow (maybe – see below). I have been feeling pretty good about it, more and more people are talking to me about it – offering support, resources etc. Also, I might not be going it alone – my mom and my friend Katherine (both dealing with health issues of their own) are thinking about joining me in this endeavour. That’ll make it a little more fun – especially if they want to comment here for the enjoyment of the group.

Last week I had a great chat with a repeat client of mine who did the same thing about a year and a half ago. She couldn’t say enough about how great she felt and what a difference it made to her health etc. She was also dealing with some auto-immune challenges, some requiring the use of steroids. Now she isn’t on any medications at all. Very encouraging!

But when I read ingredient labels, I get a little discouraged. I want to avoid all gluten. But do you know what has gluten in it….? EVERYTHING! Not really, but sometimes it sure does feel that way (poor, poor celiacs). I checked with Laura (the ND) and she said I don’t need to be wary of the gluten in my soya sauce for example, just the big, obvious stuff….so if that’s ok, then what about that little bit of egg in the bread I love so much – it’s only one egg per loaf. Or other hidden ingredients like butter and milk and cheese….

It’s a buttery slippery slope my friends….even my darling husband has been saying things like “you don’t need to be so strict, it’s not like it’s a real allergy or something”. If my theory is correct however, then actually honey, yes it is a real allergy – one that is damaging my body little by little. I really do need to be that strict.

I’ve also been thinking about tinkering with the start date just a little bit. I’m ashamed to admit I’m considering jeopardizing my health for a few days longer just so I can enjoy (temporarily at least) a mouthwatering pulled pork sandwich and some ribs at this year’s Ribfest. I went last year for the first time and it was just so tasty! I had thought about it when planning my start date and was hoping that it started a bit earlier. So, maybe I’ll just start on September 4th – and go out with a bang! And really, let’s be honest, it will take my intestines three months to get over that one day at Ribfest anyway!

Can you see me hanging my head in shame? Cause I am.

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First official TMI post

20 Jul

So, since making ‘vegan-esque’ choices lately, I haven’t had a lot of dairy. No milk, no cheese, no yogurt – I think it’s been about 2 weeks (maybe more) since I had any significant dairy….

I was doing a whole ton of prenatal home visits today and at my first visit of the day I was offered a super yummy coffee – with irish cream flavour, steamed milk and everything. It was fantastic! And caffeine will also be hitting the road with animal products, so I figure there’s gotta be some gettin while the gettin’s good! Anyway, by the end of the day my stomach hurt to the touch. My intestines just felt super sensitive and I was giving myself a tummy rub while driving around town. And there were other strange ‘symptoms’ too – let’s just say I was driving with the windows down.

I was racking my brain, trying to figure out what had set things off and finally it dawned on me – I had a big fat mug of milk this morning.

So milk is clearly out – but I still think I should test this again with some ice cream, just to be sure!

I can do one day, it’s all the other days I’m afraid of.

15 Jul

A number of health issues have brought me to the point of planning a move to a 100% gluten free (GF) vegan, and (what the hell) raw-ish diet. The root cause of these issues is, I believe, an auto-immune disorder that was potentially triggered by  the malaria pills and/or the vaccines I received when I traveled to Africa in the spring of 2006. Those things threw my already susceptible immune system out of whack – and now it is all in a tizzy, attacking me and my parts when it should be protecting me and keeping me healthy!

I live a pretty healthy life already – no cleaning chemicals in my house (only vinegar, baking soda and Norwex); the little meat that I do eat is local and organic 90% of the time, organic veggies (local CSA in the summer), I don’t drink from plastic water bottles, my food is all stored in glass containers and recently I have severely restricted my use of the microwave. But still, my immune system continues to overreact…

I  have endometriosis. I have been trying to manage pain with diet/natural remedies for a number of years and I believe it has made some difference. Many many resources suggest a GF and vegetarian diet for endo working from the idea that part of the problem with endo is inflammation and gluten and animal protein promote inflammation. I have been clinging to the GF bandwagon off and on for about 2 years. Actually, let’s be honest – usually the wagon runs me over. Lately though, darling Karina has made my GF life a lot more bearable and I also have a great “Endo Diet” cookbook. And I don’t eat a lot of meat, but I do enjoy it when I do.

Recently I was diagnosed with an autoimmune hypothyroid disorder…which is the proverbial straw on the camel’s back. I ran off to Laura (the naturopath) and she threw the word ‘Vegan’ out there. Not making me do it, but strongly encouraging me to think about it. And think about it I have. Chicken and fish and cheese and eggs and and and…being Vegan is a big friggen deal – no animal products, period. Now, just for fun – throw gluten-free into the mix. You know that GF bread that I love? Yeah, it’s got eggs in it – so out it goes….

The theory is that since my immune system is over-reacting to EVERYTHING, we need to settle it down so it will stop attacking me and leave me in peace. Hopefully a GF, more raw and vegan diet will allow my body to rest, relax and begin to heal.

So, for the rest of the summer I will be strictly GF and no red meat. I will begin to eat more vegan-type meals, omitting animal products when and where I can, all the while mentally preparing myself for the three month trial period of being a strict GF-Vegan. I will do this from September 1 – December 1, at which point I will reassess my health, feelings etc and either choose to stay the course for awhile longer, or throw in the towel and eat a big fat bacon cheeseburger!

That this is overwhelming is an understatement! It sounds easy, but when I really start to think about it I realize how much work it’s going to be. But, something has got to give or my body is going to continue to breakdown at an alarming rate. So mentally, I will do like AA does – one day at a time…I know I can do one day.