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.