Hey, y'all! It's been a while, hasn't it? How have you all been?
I've been unwell the last few weeks - ironic, isn't it? I write a blog on how to stay well, and then go and get sick. Oh dear, it happens to the best of us. ;)
I only brought that up because I was thinking on how important it can be for people to look for links between what they eat/consume/intake and what their body does in response. Some things are obvious, like how lactose intolerant people get sick if they have dairy, or another person might swell up and stop breathing if they eat (or even smell) peanuts. Other things aren't so obvious, like reacting to a certain colouring or preservative in different foods. It can be a hard job and the culprit can be hard to track down. Often it is a matter of trial and error until you can step back and go "Aha! There you are!" :)
Just to throw a couple of examples out there: In the last couple of weeks, I had a cold (nothing unusual for me with change of season) but when I still couldn't shake it after two weeks, and my ears were hurting, my throat was sore, etc., I decided to go to the doctor. (Important note: if you think something is really wrong, GO AND VISIT THE DOCTOR. It is better to do that than to try and treat something serious yourself until it's too late.) Anyway, it turned out that I had an infection (probably sinus) and that I had to take antibiotics for five days. A few days later, I noticed that I was coming up in a rash on the left side of my tummy, and around my right armpit. It was one of those "Aha!" moments. I have had this rash before, a few months back, but couldn't figure out what was causing it. Now I am pretty sure that it was due to the antibiotics I was prescribed before and after my wisdom teeth were removed. My suspicions have been confirmed as within a few days of finishing the antibiotics, the rash went down again.
With that link firmly under my belt, I move onto mystery number two, which will have to be done by trial and error. For the last few weeks, I have had quite bad indigestion. I wake up fine, but part way through the day my stomach seems to balloon with gas, which is not only awkward, but also rather uncomfortable. This can last all day sometimes. Not pleasant, to say the least. This morning, I felt it start again, and a thought struck me: what if it's my coffee? I was in the middle of a cup, and every sip seemed to be getting harder to take, as all my tummy wanted to do was release all the gas it had taken in. I ended up tipping the rest of my coffee out, and shall not drink it again for about a week. Then, it's experiment time. I am going to step this out so that you can do it too, because being unwell is not how we were created to live.
Download, save, and printout this chart, or make your own. (Sorry, you can't really see it here- I'm highly untechno! :P)
Start with your next meal or snack. Record exactly what you ate and the time at which you ate it. Take note if the targeted symptom that you write at the top occurs and be sure to write down what time the symptom occurs. Keep this up with everything you consume for two weeks, then sit down and review it. Look to see if you can find any patterns. It might surprise you what triggers a reaction in you. Do you get a migraine after a meal of pasta? Or perhaps indigestion after spicy dishes? Give it a go - giving up what triggers a reaction is a small price to pay for living fully and being well.