Weaving my way around Rheumatoid Arthritis.

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Health Stuff

I’m going to try to reconstruct the weekend…

Woke Saturday morning with my tummy  bloated – around 7 or 8.

Let the chickens out at 7 and worked in the garden in a gentle mist. Harvested all the sunflower plants and cleaned up those beds. I have a whole picnic table full of heads drying. They were beautiful growing,  and fun to watch the finches discover the seeds this week, and the chickens think they are in heaven when I pull one and give them a whole head to puck. But as a food supplement, I’d have to plant several acres to make any difference in their diet!

Started to get a terrible headache around 10 –  don’t think it was a coffee headache, it was different, seemed worse when I would kneel or sit or squat and then get back up – never had one like that before. Had half a cup of coffee with sugar only.

Continued to garden pulling dead plants and getting beds ready to plant with fall seed. At one point I thoughtlessly popped the last two cherry tomatoes on the vine. They were yummy!

Harvested the corn – it was a bad year for corn in NC – I usually don’t plant it but for some reason had a packet of corn seeds and ended up with 1 dozen silly plants. The chickens ate 4 of those and the rest gave me 8 ears. Two were full-sized, real corn, the rest were miniature sized – an inch across, 4 inches long, with miniature kernels to match – very stylish with the miniature vegetable craze!

Rain started in earnest around noon. I went inside and had another half cup of coffee, as the headache continued.

By this time my stomach was bloated to a 10 – could it be the two tomatoes? Or is it something I ate two or three days ago? One of my books mentions that it can be something I ate up to 72 hours ago. But my bloating always starts so quickly after I’ve eaten something, often starting as I’m sitting at the table eating that I have believed it is caused by something in the meal I just ate.

Disgusted, I ate what I wanted and ignored trying to stay on the elimination diet.

I  ate the first wax beans from the garden, cooked with bacon.  I ate some of the last garden melon. I ate the last beefsteak tomato sliced onto a BLT. Actually, ate one for lunch and one for dinner. Ate more melon.

I spent the afternoon in the kitchen. Made deviled eggs and a whole big pot of beans, cut up the last melon, cooked bacon, cleaned the corn, cleaned up the kitchen. By then my back was hurting from the pressure of the bloating and I spent the rest of the day on the couch, reading.

My friend had sent me a new study, which indicated that 91% of celiac’s also show antibodies to dairy. Not what I wanted to learn, although I’ve had my suspicions.

So, I had decided to jettison the dairy.

I did think I was dairy free all day, only to realize later that the gluten-free English muffins we use for bread contain dairy.

I’ll agree that the dairy could be causing the edema, but not the gassy bloat. I have dairy every day, so that makes no sense with the bloating pattern.

I did manage to log 5500 on the step Nazi.

Went to bed early, and slept well. Woke to a flat stomach. Stiff feet and ankles, some swelling, stiffness in hands. Weight was up slightly. New blisters on fingers. No other symptoms.

Sunday I gardened in the morning. Got the kale and spinach planted and readied a second bed. Worked on the new beds down one side of the fence. Pulled weeds in the area I want to plant with clover for the hens.

Experienced the same headache, had 1/2 cup of coffee with sugar.

Still disgusted with the strange bloating I decided to eat what I wanted again.

The heat sent me inside to read for the afternoon.

Noticed I had a rash on my wrists – little red bumps above my glove line – so I think it must be contact dermatitis. Doesn’t itch. Also have the same rash on my neck and chest – matches my shirt line. I got this same rash last weekend. I must be reacting to some weed I’m pulling.

I set a pot of beef bones to boiling for bone broth, and put a chuck roast in the oven.

Ate deviled eggs, chips with salsa, corn on the cob, beans, melon then roast with carrots, potato, celery, onion, garlic for dinner. NO dairy at all.

Logged 6500 steps.

Read and watched Burn notice and went to bed at 9 feeling fine.

Slept well. Woke at three for a bathroom trip, read for a few minutes then went back to sleep until 5.

Woke with my belly at a 10, new blisters, 176.7 on the scale, crusty eyes, goopy right eye, crusty nose, retina flashes, strangely – hands and feet are less swollen, less stiff & no neurological symptoms.

Had a stuffy nose in the night. I’m very suspicious that is connected to potatoes – but they’ve always been a favorite comfort food, so I haven’t wanted to admit that they give me trouble. I have cut way back on both frequency and quantity.

So – I think the only way to sort this out is to finally wean myself off the coffee – I’m down to 1 cup, from 3. And then do a few days of water only (like I did three years ago) until all my symptoms clear for more than one day, and then add one food for at least 3 days, or as long as I can stand or as long as symptoms don’t return, before I add another food. And continue. With that approach, it would take many long months, probably over a year, to get to a normal diet again. I really don’t see an alternate path. I’ve messed around with my diet for 3 years, and haven’t figured out the triggers, except for gluten.

I see the new doc tomorrow afternoon, so maybe the lab results will shed some light.



Written by wovensongs

August 19, 2013 at 6:13 am

2 Responses

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  1. It’s challenging to find the right diet. It’s all an experiment, as different things work for different people – here’s hoping you’ll soon have success in finding what works so you don’t have to suffer the bloating much longer; it’s hard enough to fight the disease without all the “extra” stuff piled on top. Stay strong.

    J.G. Chayko

    August 19, 2013 at 5:11 pm

    • Thank you for your encouraging words J.G.

      I’ve enjoyed reading your blog. I am getting to be old lady at 64, but have a young woman in my heart.

      Stay strong – a good motto for us all.


      August 20, 2013 at 6:14 am

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