A Health Update & a Foot Strain

Several of you have emailed and asked me for an update on my health and how I am doing with my food allergies.  If you are new here or missed it you might want to read these past posts so you know what I am talking about:

My struggle with Hypothyroidism

Multiple Food Allergy Diagnosis

It has been a little over 6 months since I discovered I was struggling with 7 major Food Allergies/Intolerances.  Needless to say, the past 6 months have been very difficult.  I went on an elimination diet at the beginning of the year and eliminated one food allergen out of my diet each week.  It took me about 8 weeks before I had eliminated the 7 Foods Gluten, Corn, Soy, Dairy, Peanuts, Tomatoes, and Baker’s Yeast)…so just a few things :)!

I am not going to lie…this was NOT an easy thing for me.  I was kind of an emotional wreck…and I was really mad.  I kind of had to pull away from the blog here and not share any personal things because I tend to be a very private person (which seems weird seeing as I am a blogger and all LOL).  It takes me a while to be able to open up about things because I prefer to wrestle with my own feelings before I feel like I can share them with others.

My body actually went through a sort of detox.  I was surprised at how sick I was during that 8 week period.  It was an eye opener to me to realize the effects these foods were having on my body without me even realizing it.  I was sick with several allergy symptoms which included the following:  hives, sneezing, itchy and watery eyes, headaches, the shakes, brain fog, irritability, fatigue, swollen lips and tongue, swelling hands and feet, and severe neck pain and my left pointer finger had some serious arthritis pain and stiffness.

And then a week or so after the detox, sometime in March, I woke up feeling AMAZING!  I remember being surprised at how great I felt and realized that it had been a really LONG time since I had felt that way.  It dawned on me that I had forgotten what it felt like to feel good…and in essence that made me feel really bad.  I felt bad when I realized that I had gradually been getting sicker and sicker without realizing how sick my body had become or how rotten I was really feeling…you just get used to feeling that way.  The food I had been eating was poisoning me slowly and surely.

Now, I was not the best eater…and have always enjoyed a few treats here and there, but I always tried to do so in moderation and counteract that with exercise, running and being active outdoors.

Long story short, I made a lot of lifestyle changes and did really great eating a Paleo diet (mainly because it supported what I COULD eat).  I switched to eating mostly whole foods and my body felt GREAT!  I lost 10 pounds immediately, which was a miracle in and of itself as I have struggled to lose even ONE pound (even while training for a half marathon).  But the biggest difference I noticed was feeling like I had this layer of “puffiness” around my entire body, and feeling like it was melting away.

I am gradually making changes with the way my entire family eats…and that is proving to be a little more difficult, but we are making some good changes that they are mostly happy about ;)!  I still have days where I don’t feel great…and some days I cheat and eat something on my bad list and I almost always regret it.  But it is too hard to be perfect all the time, especially with Summer Vacations.

I still mourn some of my old favorites…like a great piece of Chocolate Cake, or an icy cold Dr. Pepper…but for the most part can deal with it.  Another thing I realized was that I am an emotional eater.  I didn’t really think that I was before this…but after not being able to eat some of my favorite foods, I realized that I had used them in the past to deal with uncomfortable feelings.  So I have had to learn how to face them in a healthier way.

My once, always inflammed, and swollen digestive system is healing now and I am beginning to notice a change in the way my body can metabolize food.  I feel like I am on a two steps forward and one step back road.  I feel better now more than I feel lousy, and that is a step in the right direction.  I feel like I have a lot more energy now too and I was really enjoying and looking forward to training for another half marathon this year.  I wanted to see how I felt this time around compared to my other half marathons now that I was eating foods that were not making me so sick.  And…I was also turning 40 this year…(which I did back on July 2 Winking smile), and I wanted to find myself at a healthier point that I did at 39 last year.

Lo and behold…life threw me another curve ball.  Just over 6 weeks ago, I slipped while walking down a really steep…like REALLY steep hill, at my daughter’s soccer game on May 31.  My left foot slipped and then folded under me and I landed with all of my weight right on top of it.  I tore several ligaments, tendons and a muscle on the top of my foot.

lake powell 6

If you follow me on Instagram, you were aware of this as I have shared small updates along the way.  I visited a foot specialist who was shocked at the severity of my injury.  The hill played a major part in that.  Apparently my injury is in the top 10 percent of most severe foot strains.  FANTASTIC!  I have been in a walking boot for about 5 weeks in and out.  And just two weeks ago got rid of the boot for good.

lake powell 7

I was so mad at myself.  LOL!  When I injured my foot, my VERY first thought was…”This is going to mess with my running!”  I had also just barely paid for the entry fee for my August 17th Half Marathon.  Go figure!  Running was also the way I had been dealing with my stress and the fact that I was unable to eat my emotions any more.  Like I said…One step forward…and two steps back (or was it two steps forward?…).  Either way, at this point…I wouldn’t be taking any steps forward…physically or figuratively (is that even a word?).

lake powell 1

Two weeks after the injury, we spent a week on a family vacation in Lake Powell boating.  I was given strict instructions by my doctor to get in the water and swim.  The cold water and swimming GREATLY strengthened and healed my foot…so much so that at the beginning, I could not move my foot and swim without horrible pain, just to be able to swim by the end of the week with little to no pain.

boating boot

I was also faithful about using my favorite doTerra oils 3 times a day.  My doctor was greatly surprised at the amount of healing that had occurred.

Then 5 weeks post injury, my husband and I spent my 4oth birthday in NYC.  He had a work conference there…and I tagged along.

new york

Manhattan is a walking city and we walked anywhere from 5-8 miles a day.  My poor little foot did amazingly well and I feel like all the walking actually did it some good.

new york 2

Anyways…that was supposed to be a long story short…but its still pretty long.  If you are still with me, I feel like I could finally give you all an update.

I don’t want you to think my life is perfect…cause heaven knows…we are far from that.  The truth is, that I just have to process my own feelings before I can type them out for the world to read.  I try to keep this little corner of my life (my blog) a positive and upbeat place, as so much on the web can be dark and/or a place to tear others down.

We are enjoying summer, but it always tends to run me a bit ragged.  I crave cleanliness, and order and having 5 kids at home…all day long…is not conducive to that…at least at my house.  I don’t like to be the cranky momma all day so I try to just deal with it and enjoy having the kids around…but I don’t always do a great job at that…but I am learning!

I hope to keep you updated more here on our family as I have several of you asking and inquiring.  I plan on sharing a bit of our two trips so far when I can.

As always, I am so grateful to those of you who are still there…in the shadows.  This blog is a big part of who I am and it is mainly in part because of you.  I thank you for your kind words and support and I truly enjoying sharing with you.

Comments

  1. says

    wow! i can not imagine eliminating all of that! i recently found out that i am highly intolerant to corn so have had to remove that. i feel like every day is a battle and it messes with my mind. knowing i ate something bad, but not sure what. it’s so hard to make all my food from scratch each day. it is worth it though. i can’t believe how good i feel when i stay corn free!

    • says

      I am so sorry to hear that Beth! Corn is a really hard one…it is hidden in everything! It is for sure an everyday battle. Making food from scratch is one of my challenges too with so many other responsibilities! Thanks so much for your comment!

  2. stacy says

    I know how you are feeling. suddenly my son was allergic to corn , wheat, eggs, soy , milk, all tree nuts. and he was only 5 and it was hard on him to not eat the foods kids were used to . he lost weight and we had a hard time finding things he liked without corn. This was something that just happened and 6 years later he is able to eat the things again minus the milk that’s a major allergy he had at birth. so there I a possibility you will get better again. something just sped up his immune system . his antibodies were really high and after we pulled him off of the foods they got lower. I was told that if something sped it up for some unknown cause there is a chance the immune system will settle down again. and his did. hes better.

    • says

      Oh wow! So many of the same common food allergies. I am glad to hear he is now able to eat most of the foods again. We are hoping that will be the same for me. I do think I have more issues with dairy, gluten and soy. Thanks so much for sharing your story with me. It is nice to find others who understand what you are struggling with on a daily basis!

  3. says

    This must be really hard, but in the end: what an eye opener for you ! I guess this is when you really don’t have other choice that you then realize how bad some food is for you (and usually… for all of us but we eat it anyway).
    I would LOVE for you to share what you now eat, what your diet consist in.
    And it will get easier as your new cooking repertoire will expand, new favorites will be found and loved.

    • says

      It has truly been an eye opener…and in hindsight…a blessing. It is so true about our convenience foods. I eat a lot of the following: Salmon, Halibut, shrimp, chicken, brown rice, potatoes (red, brown and sweet), fresh fruits, fresh veggies and almonds. I cook most of my food in coconut oil and drink water. I also now drink almond milk and coconut milk (but sparingly). I can eat tortillas but do so sparingly and eat a lot of “lettuce wraps”. I am finding more Paleo friendly recipes that I enjoy too.

      Thanks so much for your support!

  4. Rachel says

    Wow, that is so amazing that you can stick to those food restrictions. I applaud you for such hard work and determination.

    Also as a small side note…I have a hard time finding cute shorts that are long, where did you get those white shorts you have on in the picture? And where did you get the blue shirt too? You have such great style! I would have never guessed you were turning 40, you look so young and cute

  5. says

    You are so amazing! I’m not sure I could do as well as you’ve done on such a restricted diet. You’re an inspiration!

  6. Cool Mom (Christine M.) Tech Support for Stanley & Katrina says

    I love this post. I love that you shared with us when you were ready. You are inspiring. My daughter went gluten free about a year ago (age 9 then) and two weeks into it she said, “I’m never eating gluten again.” because she suddenly had days free of stomach pains. It is crazy what it does to you and the cooking from scratch is such a huge change. Especially when, if you are like me, would rather be anywhere than the kitchen. Now to work on my own healthy eating. :) Thank you for sharing.

  7. Emily says

    Thank you for sharing this very personal experience! I am new to your site and love it. My numb and swollen arm and hand needed the inspiration to continue to investigate the possibility of Hypothyroidism. Thank you for blessing me with your sharing!

    • says

      Oh no Emily! Yes! Definitely look into it. Have the T3 and T4 tests done as well as sometimes the “routine” blood test they use can miss hypothyroid problems. I was normal on that one…but my T3 and T4 tests showed that I indeed had hypo. I hope you can get some answers. It is so hard to not know why we are suffering through something.

  8. Sabrina says

    How did you get the food allergy test? I asked my GI about it and she had me do a blood test, but it didn’t really show much. I’ve been cutting a lot of food out (dairy, anything fatty or acidic which sadly includes lots of fruits and some veggies, and starting gluten this week) and it’s really tough, especially when a lot of social events center around food. I started cutting food out about a year and a half ago and I was also a wreck, it’s so emotionally difficult. I wish that by cutting all these foods out, that somehow it would make things all better, but so far it’s not. Here’s hoping we figure it out eventually!

    • says

      I went to an allergy specialist and had a skin test done. They test for 17 of the major and more common food allergies. They can do a more accurate test if I need one down the road…but so far it looks as if we are on the right track. I get tested again in a few months. I can totally relate to feeling the difficulty at social events. It can be hard to find something that will work. It for sure has been an up and down road here too. Good luck to you. I hope you can start feeling better all of the time! It can be so frustrating!

  9. Crystal says

    I’m so sorry that you hurt your foot so bad. That must have been so frustrating!! I’m so glad you are feeling better! Who would have thought that food could tualy be poisoning you. Glad you got it all figured out.

    • says

      Thanks Crystal. This whole food allergy thing has been a huge eyeopener to me in so many different ways. Thanks for your sweet comment. I always appreciate them! And yes…I don’t like to not be able to do what I want to do and when I want to do it. I am learning patience! :)

  10. says

    You are rockin! I am so amazed with your strength… and willpower not to cheat with a DP each day! I’m sure it is worth it- you look awesome and we’re glad to hear you’re feeling mucho better!! Keep it up hot momma! XOXOOXO

    • says

      It has been really difficult. I have cried over food…more than I care to admit LOL! I have not been perfect! Thanks so much for your sweet comment. I am feeling a lot better about the whole situation! Love you girls! xo

  11. audrea says

    I did almost the same accident with my ankle Memorial Day weekend except I fractured it. The boot was a lovely summer shoe. :) Can you tell me about the doTerra oil you mentioned. What do you use them for? After I read your post yesterday, I read a few other blogs mention them for allergies and I am very interested in them.
    I love your blog! I understand your privacy and thank you for sharing!

    • says

      Oh no! That is not fun, especially on your holiday! As far as the doTerra oils go…I simply LOVE them. I used wintergreen, aroma touch, lemongrass and deep blue on my foot and swollen injury areas. A few drops a day and just rubbed them in my skin. I really feel like it helped with the swelling and my quick healing. My doctor has been surprised with my healing rate for how severe it started out. I buy mine from my oil gal and you can get them through me here if you are interested. Julie Crowell is my doTerra rep and she is so knowledgeable about the oils. Tell her I sent you and she will take care of you. http://www.dropsforlife.co/idearoom.html#.UeWfJRYTvw4

  12. says

    Goodness! Thanks for sharing your battle. Just found your blog but can totally relate on several levels. My daughter has had multiple life-threatening food allergies her entire life (18 yrs), so we have all lived through the daily struggles, the school parties, the social situations where everything revolves around food. I can feel your pain/frustration. She’s allergic to all nuts and soy. She’s always carried Epipens and that has it’s own challenges. Do know that everything gets easier with practice and time. I realize you have even more allergies, which is harder, but hopefully they are not anaphylactic allergies? (you don’t have to answer that; I’m just hoping for you.) Your post has made me think, though, that its time I get myself checked. I have felt awful for years but I have spent all my time trying to keep my daughter alive through meals, that I never really considered that I could have my own intolerances/allergies. You’ve given me the nudge to do something about it. Thank you again for sharing!

    • says

      I can not imagine how difficult it was to deal with life threatening allergies especially before all the helps that have come out in the last few years. I do not have anaphylactic allergies thank goodness so that does help. I hope you can find some answers now that you have time to put more focus on yourself. I am sure your daughter appreciates all the hard work and efforts it took. Thanks so much for your sweet comment.

  13. says

    Amy,
    I know a bit about all this and I admire your self discipline. I am sure we would all feel better with similar changes! I am so glad to hear your foot is getting better. I know how hard it is to recover from an injury like that. I love summer but sometimes I hate the noise, mess and always the fighting. I do love the sleeping late, no homework, and lighter schedule and all this sunshine makes it all ok- most days!

    • says

      Ah Laura! You are so sweet! I know right? The changes really are just overall great life style and health changes :). I hope you are doing well and that you are enjoying the last little bit of summer. It really is going so fast!

  14. Kelly S says

    Your blog about allergies hit me about the same time. I’ll be 41 years this year. The Dr. said no corn and chicken and highly allergic to molds, diary and tress. Ugh ! I haven’t started the diet I tried and with four kids it was hard. I ‘m starting to have tingling in my arms and legs the Dr. said it’s the food. You inspire me to get back on diet to feel better. I will continue to follow your blog and insights are so helpful. Thank you for sharing.

    • says

      Thanks you for sharing your story Kelly! I can totally relate. It is really hard especially when you have to cook for a family too. I am not perfect but it does seem to get better. And feeling better is a great motivation. Good Luck!

  15. Alicia says

    I am in the exact same boat! A hypothyroid and I’ve been gluten and dairy free for almost a year, and I still experience sypmtoms that are exactly the same. Especially the bloating of face and tummy. I want to find a doctor and allergist, but I don’t know where to start. What type of doctor did you see? Most prescribe synthroid, and I want to try Armour. Could you give me tips on how to find similar help?

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