I was hesitant to post my journey on-line, but where else can I get support for doing an elimination diet? My friends already think I'm extreme!
How I got here.
-- SAD diet for the first 40 years of my life, but healthy (I thought) and slim.
-- Pregnant at 40 and bloodwork indicated Lupus - officially diagnosed a couple of years later. Crazy high ANA levels but mostly asymptomatic. No meds except for a couple of months several years ago when I took a baby aspirin every other day per doctor's orders. But then I quit.
-- Breastfed baby diagnosed with milk allergy so I gave up all dairy. My research then prompted me to give up all animal products (excluding honey) before baby began eating solids.
-- I've been free of animal products for 10 years and free of gluten for 5 years. I cut out corn syrup, preservatives, dyes, etc years ago. Soy went a year or two ago, and corn more recently.
-- But until my breast cancer diagnosis two years ago I didn't take the no-added oils seriously. Boy did that change! This is when I got serious about McDougalling!
Even though I was a very strict vegetarian eating a mostly
whole foods diet, I didn't think the added oils mattered - they do!
-- To do over my choices on breast cancer treatment.
But we do the best we can at the time. I asked for them to remove the lump with clear margins. My surgeon said they didn't get clear margins. I did not want chemo or radiation but I capitulated and had a mastectomy ... but I did not let them take any lymph nodes, so I am not "staged". A funny comment I got in the hospital: the nurses were so amazed at how quickly I recovered from my surgeries (oh yes, I elected to have a complete and total hysterectomy at the same time as my mastectomy because my breast cancer was estrogen positive and I was not a candidate for nor did I particularly want to take the drugs for that). The nurses claimed my speedy recovery was because I was so healthy
! Healthy people do not have body parts removed, and in hindsight I probably would NOT have jumped on the surgery bandwagon so quickly, but the cancer diagnosis was absolutely terrifying for me and I still have a young child!
-- I also discovered that I was vitamin D deficient 2 years ago. High dose D did not help. Following Dr. McD's suggestion to expose as much of my body to the sun during the hot part of the day for 20 mintues did! So now in spring, summer, and fall I'm "not decent" on my deck!
-- Somewhere during the summer I started waking wtih stiff, painful joints, especially in my fingers. I considered that I had introduced gf oats into my diet this summer (after being oat free since removing gluten 5 years ago), so I quit eating the oats, and the pain went away. I did an oat challenge and the pain/stiffness came back and I thought I had my cure. But I've been oat free for 2 months and the pain gradually came back and is now much worse than it was.
-- My mom had RA and died of another autoimmune disease. I don't know if this is RA or the Lupus kicking in or maybe the lack of estrogen or what, but it prompted me to start my elimination diet two days ago. The scary thing is that this is morning 3 and its not better. I'm scared that I'll fall in the 30% of people that don't respond to diet..
Having given you the morbid history, I just want to say that I "feel" great (after I get moving) and am an incredibly busy and active (and still slim) 50+ year old mom of a young child. I will post what I'm eating next.