Monday, November 8, 2010

A New Approach

I thought that I had read just about everything about Celiac Disease. What I didn't know was that my health problems went beyond our Western medicine knowledge of CD. Well, I guess you could say that I did know that deep down, but I didn't know where to even start with that dilemma.

I finally decided to start looking into more "alternative" answers to my symptoms, since the gluten-free thing just wasn't cutting it. The more research I did, the more different aspects of my symptoms seemed to make sense.

The first issue I looked into was Candida. I only knew of it in the context of severe infections, sepsis, etc., or the ever-popular vaginal infection. I know how to treat that. Makes sense to my drug-oriented mind. The remedies, though, seemed pretty far out. No one would tell you exactly what was in the "Super Duper Awesome Candida Remedy" for 3 easy payments of $49.95... not only am I a cheapskate, but also a cheapskate pharmacist who will never take anything she doesn't know what it is and how it works. So that option was out, but I also know there had to be something more.

Enter the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. I started looking into this after being on a probiotic that seemed to help but certainly wasn't the entire answer (saccharomyces boulardii). Pretty extensively researched and published, I might add, especially for an OTC supplement. Sweet.

Anyway, the SCD. Much of this made sense. I was, however, quite concerned that the most recent study cited in Elaine Gottschall's book Breaking the Vicious Cycle (the "revised" version) was from 1992. I know I'm in a vicious cycle, that much is obvious!! But I kept thinking... there has got to be more we have learned in that timeframe... in fact, some of the most robust and widely accepted data on the benefits of probiotics have been published since then. Not sure what to think at this point, but open to trying just about anything. How much more restrictive can it be beyond what I'm already doing?!

During this time is when I also figured out the nightshade problem. Ugh, don't get me started on how I tried to avoid this conclusion for a looooong time. The thought of trying SCD AND no nightshades?? Crazy.

I happened upon a website that discussed the GAPS diet (Gut And Psychology Syndrome). It is basically SCD on steroids. (Or not on steroids, since it may help with IBD... heh heh heh...)

It was developed by an actual MD, Natasha Campbell McBride to help with her son's autism. makes sense similar to SCD. Actually, it is almost hard to distinguish it from SCD. It is somewhat more modern of a program. So basically it is what I was looking for, someone took the SCD and continued running with it.

The issue with GAPS are some of the things it wants you to do on the intro diet, like raw egg yolks. I'm sorry, but I just can't do that. Not to mention that I wasn't able to tolerate eggs a few weeks ago. Maybe someday, I will try eggs again...

SO: what am I not eating now?? Gluten free, grain free, soy free, legume free, nightshade free, dairy free (except for homemade SCD yogurt), sugar free, egg free, nut free.

SO: what am I actually eating?? Today, I had yogurt and pomegranate, coffee with honey, chicken and cabbage soup, beef roast with carrots, tilapia with zucchini noodle pesto (and parm... still waiting on the verdict for that one...), and apple cider.

Sounds like a lot of work, huh? It has been. This is only my second week doing my version of SCD/GAPS. But honestly, it is not much harder than the great lengths I was going to before. Now, I'm just hoping I have something to show for it and start healing!!

I'm committed for a month. Probably not enough time to evaluate, but that's all I can manage at the moment. I'll keep you posted. Pun intended.

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