Sunday, November 20, 2016

Results of the Diet

November 11, 2016, I had my annual colonoscopy. Yep, I'm up to one a year until my ulcers clear up. After my first surgery (1995), I had three ulcers around the site of my surgery for 15 years. No medication could clear them up, and they tried every medication available. I have two ulcers around the site of my second surgery (2013) that they first saw last year. I also had some other issues, and I was on Humira. This year my other issues cleared up with the diet but my ulcers remain. My guess is the culprit is coffee.

How does one give up coffee? I have tried in the past and I feel like a zombie; a zombie with a headache. So I have been decreasing the amount of coffee I have every day. I have traded in my 16 oz Tigger mug for my 8 oz Star Wars mug. Now I only drink 8oz of coffee a day. When I run out of this bag of coffee, I am going to switch to half-caf. And I can't get English Breakfast tea or any other caffeine replacement because caffeine is the problem. Did you know caffeine destroys the lining of your colon and causes ulcers? I didn't. But now I do, and I am determined to show my doctors that Crohn's can be controlled through diet.

You may recall that the first rule of the diet I am following is no caffeine, and it is the only rule I have not followed. I admit it; I'm addicted. Who wants to be addicted? It will be a process to go off of coffee, and I plan to replace it with B vitamin enriched smoothies and Herbal Tea. How great would it be to have no ulcers and to prove the doctors wrong?  My doctor was already impressed with my results and has agreed to let me stay on the diet without medication for at least three more months. At my next checkup, he will re-evaluate, and I hope he allows me to do keep the disease under control through diet for an entire year.

My plan to go off sugar didn't completely work. I am off of desserts, but I am eating things that have sugar in it like cranberry sauce, and Airborne Immune Support Gummies. I also have been using brown sugar in my coffee. I won't miss the flavor of coffee. In the past, when I have tried to go off coffee, I have gone cold-turkey. I hope that weaning off of it will make me avoid debilitating headaches and complete lack of focus. Wish me luck.

More later. Thanks, Heather

P.S. On Nov.16. 2016, my son and his wife were blessed with a new baby boy, Carter. He's the best.

Friday, November 4, 2016

Say Cheese!

Great news! I have added goat cheese and feta to my safe list. My food selections are really shaping up. I have gone off of pre and probiotics for now. Sometimes these supplements just seem to make me worse. I have gone on glutamine, Zinc, and digestive enzymes, and I am doing very well. I also finally added a green vegetable, spinach, thoroughly cooked.

I went to my gastroenterologist a few days ago. I have been off of Humira since July 10,  I had a flare in August and got in under control with my new diet, which I found in an English newspaper: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-1076594/How-tackle-Crohns-Disease-help-drugs.html

He was not discouraging, but he clearly did not believe that it is working. He told me that if my next colonoscopy shows improvement he may recommend the diet to other patients. I am going to mark that in the win column. I feel confident that I will be improved over last year.

My favorite things to eat for dinner are:
Ritz Crackers and Goat Cheese with Cranberry Sauce
Turkey Burgers with Sweet Potatoes
Curried Tuna with Rice and Black Olives
Grilled Salmon with spinach and feta
and Flour Tortillas with Daiya Cheddar and a little Texas Pete microwaved for one minute.

I keep lunch pretty light. I have been eating Lactaid Cottage Cheese and Applesauce or my version of chicken soup, which has no chicken, just broth. I cook carrots and rice and combine the carrots, rice, and chicken broth and spice it to taste. It's pretty good.

Breakfast has been homemade rice cereal, my version of a smoothie - Daiya yogurt, one cup milk, and selected fruit juices, pomegranate, grape, etc., a Daiya tortilla, eggs, or a combination therein.

Staying on the diet has been challenging during Halloween, and will get much worse during the holidays, but I keep the reward of good health in my mind and think of the people that would give anything to alter their diet and be well.

More later. Thanks, Heather