The next baby step on this road from infertility to conception is getting my food allergies under control. At my second appointment with my Naturopathic doctor, I learned that I have food sensitivities to apples, almonds, bananas, corn, dairy, oats, potatoes, and wheat. These foods are causing inflammation throughout my body and wreaking havoc, and most likely are related to our inability to conceive.
Considering that I had cut grains out of my diet more than a year ago; this new list pretty much limits me to eating: meat, fruit, vegetables, water, chocolate and wine. When I cut grains out of my diet I increased my intake of both dairy and potatoes, so seeing both of them on the list stuck a knife in my heart, not to mention my stomach!
There are two possible ways to deal with this: I could spend time lamenting about all that I have to lose; or I could focus on all that I have to gain by eliminating these foods from my diet, knowing full well that my tolerance of these foods may improve once my body has time to heal. I have one goal, to become healthy enough to conceive a child and be a mommy. When we started down this road my husband and I agreed that we would both do whatever it took to become healthy enough to conceive. This is something I have to do. I know that if I do not, it may very well be something I regret or at least wonder about for the rest of my life.
Tastiness, and culinary desires aside, it is time to learn to live life anew. Please don’t think I’m a Pollyanna. There were lots of groans, and some serious mourning of all the delicious foods I was about to eliminate from my diet.
Yesterday, while I sipped my morning coffee, complete with organic cow’s milk, I decided to try a day without all these foods (with the exception of milk in my morning coffee b/c I hadn’t yet purchased coconut milk). I didn’t do anything crazy like chart my symptoms, or even pay particular attention to what was happening to my body throughout the day. I had the opportunity to deliver another sample lesson for another potential job, so I started my morning as I might on any other grain free day: with grain free toast, and coffee wtih milk. After the interview, I came home did a few things and felt lethargic. Rather than fight the fatigue as I might have if I were working, I decided to be good to myself and see if a nap might help. I woke up feeling sluggish and didn’t have much go for the rest of the day. I didn’t feel like myself at all. That was how I felt when I was working, not when I had been so well rested and healthy as I’ve been on this leave of absence. I kept my word and did not consume any of the foods the Naturopath identified as allergens for the rest of the day.
Later that evening as I was talking with a friend who understand food allergies very well, it hit me, I felt like I went through withdrawal yesterday! I spent the afternoon super tired, and didn’t have any go. I have been reading Grain Brain By Dr. David Perlmutter and he talks about our brain reacting to foods that cause inflammation similar to the way it reacts to narcotics, with a high followed by a withdrawal period that produces cravings, moodiness, lethargy, and an overall feeling of blech. That has how I spent my afternoon yesterday. Then after supper, which was completely allergen free, I felt great.
This morning, I awoke and I’m feeling pretty good. I have more energy than yesterday and I’m in a pretty good mood. Having never been a morning person, this is pretty cool. If I can feel like this every day, staying away from the allergens will be totally worth it!