So as you should know by now, I have Crohn’s Disease. This past semester has been insane and because of my schedule it was near impossible for me to see the doctor. I was basically sick the entire semester, first with allergies and a sinus infection and later with stomach pains. I had to stop student teaching earlier than I wanted to due to the stomach pain and needing to be able to eat at certain times. After I stopped I was able to see the doctor, they drew blood and checked my stool for a certain type of infection. They saw nothing of interested besides my blood showing high inflammation. He had me get a CT scan to check for abscesses. Luckily I had none, but there were new areas of inflammation. Previously I had only had areas of Crohn’s in my large intestine and the very end of my small intestine. The bitch decided to expand. My doctor now wants to change my medication to an injectible one that treats the whole intestinal tract as opposed to just the end.
That was my wake up call. I had gone on certain food detoxes before when I was having flares only to go back to eating crap as soon as I started feeling better. Now I know you can’t just make a change until you feel better. You have to make a full on life style change. My change: no more refined sugar or yeast, no dairy products high in lactose, as few processed foods as possible, and high amounts of anti-inflammatory foods in addition to taking curcumin and artichoke supplements (both have anti-inflammatory properties) .
Now the only types of sugar I’m having are ones already occurring in fruit, honey, (real) maple syrup and possibly agave syrup once I learn more about it. It’s been really interesting. When you stop eating things with added sugar, your palate improves insanely. I used to always put butter or brown sugar on my sweet potatoes. When I first started eating them plain I wasn’t crazy about it, but after the second or third time I became able to taste the natural sugar that was already in it. I’ve also been reading labels on food a lot more. I’ve learned that they add sugar to *everything* and I have no idea why.
As for yeast, you may not know that as a society we’ve really only been using yeast for the past 100 years or so. Prior to that sour dough was used. You can find sour dough bread in just about any store these days, but you’ll see yeast in the ingredients. I’m not eating anything with yeast because there’s a theory that Crohn’s disease can be caused by an overgrowth of yeast in the intestine, and going without it has helped me feel better in the past.This is another difficult thing because yeast is in so many things it doesn’t even need to be in like hard pretzels, flat bread, some tortillas, soup stock and so many other places you wouldn’t expect to find it. What’s the most ironic is that yeast is in a brand of bread sold called Ezekiel bread because it’s based on the recipe that God gave to him in the Bible. They had no yeast in the Bible. It should really be called Ezekiel Inspired bread since they don’t follow the recipe given in the Bible.
So here are some things I’ve been eating
Breakfast – fruits, sweet potato, oatmeal, things listed for lunch/dinner
Lunch/Dinner – fish, rice, poultry, lots of vegetables, wraps with tortillas that have no yeast
Desserts/Snacks – baklava made by my mother with a lot less honey, these granola bar things my mom makes but now she’s been making them with no sugar, veggies and special peanut butter with no sugar in it.
In the end I’m still probably going to take the new medication just because I don’t want stress next semester to screw me over. But I can now say I’ve reached the point of where I am willing to permanently change my diet in just about any way to not need to be on medication for the rest of my life.
Already I’m finding that I miss a lot of things but I’ve also come to appreciate the things I can have a lot more. Plus I’m feeling a lot better.