Last Thursday I went to the doctor to get my blood work and food allergy results. I didn’t know what I wanted more, to be allergic to something (so that I knew what was wrong and how to fix it) or to be completely healthy and not have to give up any foods.
The majority of my blood work came back normal which is great. However, according to my doctor, various measures of my red blood cells indicate that I need more animal protein. I was told to increase the amount of fish I eat and was given a supplement (more on that later) to help bring my body back to normal. I do not plan on taking any supplements for extended periods of time!
And then came the food allergy results. While gluten did not pop up (although I’d pretty much cut most of it out of my diet before the test), I found out that I am currently* severely allergic to egg whites and eggs and moderately allergic to casein (protein found in milk/dairy), milk, and coconut. I also had a few more humorous things pop up like pork (whaaa? I don’t eat meat), trout, and apricots. So random.
*I say currently because these food allergies may be temporary and fixable
While this information absolutely sucks, I’m relieved to finally know whats been causing my stomach aches. After years of not feeling normal, I can’t wait to feel good again.
My doctor thinks that after eliminating my food allergies and all other common allergens for a month there is a chance that my stomach will have repaired itself and I may be able to eat dairy on occasion or coconut every once in a while. He also thinks that I may find that I feel better in general not eating gluten or soy or corn.
So what does that mean in terms of treatment? Well for now I’m taking three supplements each day. A probiotic and cod liver oil in the morning and evening and then a hemagenic supplement to boost my red blood cells.
I’m also drinking a protein shake (pea protein, rice protein, rice bran) in the morning and afternoon. I’ve been having my first one before working out and its been great. It doesn’t taste wonderful and it looks like split pea soup but it could be a lot worse.
I’ve also been given a ton of reading materials, shopping lists, and example menus of how to eat. I basically am avoiding the 5 common allergens: soy, gluten/wheat, dairy, eggs, and corn. I also can’t eat coconut, oranges, peanuts, peanut oil, tempeh, any types of condiments, shellfish, soda, coffee (:(), sugar, and various other sweeteners.
My first thought was how difficult this was going to be. I figured I’d never be able to go out to eat and that I wouldn’t be able to eat enough food to keep myself satisfied. Honestly, so far it hasn’t been too bad. Yes it takes more planning (I’ve been carrying a baggie of nuts with me) and yes it is more difficult to eat out at restaurants (although I did twice on Saturday) but I’m not starving and I’ve managed to eat some good and tasty food. I’ve also become better at reading food labels.
I’ve made a vegan version of overnight oats.
It tasted okay but wasn’t very filling. I may have to tweak it a bit, any suggestions?
I also made a millet, tuna, kale, and artichoke salad using freshly made garlic hummus. It was really tasty and definitely something I would have eaten anyway.
I also restocked the kitchen with flour and other pantry staples I can eat. I finally had an excuse to purchase buckwheat flour and made my first real buckwheat quick bake this morning.
I topped it with pistachio butter and lots of berries. Where has buckwheat been all my life?
While the food part has been easier than expected, it was extremely difficult not to have a beer this weekend when my friends were in town and then to watch everyone eat dairy queen. I also had to turn down homemade reeses ice cream at a barbecue yesterday. It sucked!
The most important thing is that I’m already feeling a little better and haven’t had any stomach episodes since last week. That alone is enough to keep me sticking to the diet.
Does anyone have any recipe suggestions for gluten-free vegan food? I have some ideas but I’m fairly limited.
Have a wonderful Monday and I’ll be back later with the 5k winner!