Well….Ignorance is supposed to be bliss anyway!

I was blissfully unaware what being a step-mom truly meant until I was smack-dab in the middle of it.

I was blissfully unaware of what a narcissistic sociopath was until realizing that’s exactly what Flotsam is.

I was blissfully unaware that I might have a life-altering condition until about 2 weeks ago.

And it’s all Dad’s fault – THANKS DAD!

You see, my Dad has been having some minor but worrisome health problems that he’s been attempting to get resolved for a while now.  He went to multiple doctors and had multiple tests run.  Each doctor said each test was fine, nothing worrisome from their point of view.  He’s a healthy mid-sixties aged dude.

Drat.

Do you know how frustrating it is to know something is wrong with your body, but all of the “experts” and tests say you are just “fine”?  I guess there is a reason they call it “practicing medicine”.

So…Dad did what all self-respecting people do these days – he sought another opinion from Dr. Google.

As his daughter, I know he is methodical, rational and skeptical about everything on the internet.  He doesn’t take just one article seriously – he keeps researching until he either finds information to back up the claims or debunks them.

The one thing he found, that kept reappearing in his research; that also matched all of his symptoms – gluten sensitivity.

Since all of the doctors and tests said he was healthy – he decided to try going gluten-free to see if it either helped, harmed or had no difference in his symptoms.  After being as gluten-free as one can possibly be without being a gluten-nazi about it, he stated that after 5 weeks, he’d lost 10 pounds and hadn’t felt better in years!

This got me to thinking about my own health issues.  Issues that can be vague, explained away as another condition or treated with medications that cause even more symptoms.  I started researching gluten sensitivities and found that a large majority of the symptoms listed on many different websites, I also possessed.

8 out of 11 symptoms - not just in my head....

8 out of 11 symptoms – not just in my head….

So….I talked to Hun and told him I was going to start doing some testing on myself to see if my body reacts differently with and without gluten products.

OH.MY.GOSH.

I went approximately 48 hours between having no gluten (that I’m aware of) and my next gluten-filled meal.

Within 15 minutes of eating a dish at the company pot-luck called “Drunken Beans” (turns out the dish has beer cooked into it) – my face and chest turned splotchy, beet red and I felt flush all over like I had just run up three flights of stairs.  It happened so quickly, my coworkers asked me if I was ok.

But wait!  It gets better!

I also had, after eating the beans, some flour tortilla cream cheese/vegetable pinwheels.  By 30 minutes after lunch – I was burping up what tasted like cream cheese.

And then the piece-de-resistance:

I also had a slice of birthday cake at lunch…..which made my intestines bloat, cramp and make unspeakable noises until well into the evening hours.  I’m just going to assume it was the cake that did this as it was about 2 hours after eating that this lovely set of symptoms started.

NONE of these symptoms happened in the previous 48 hours – even after eating separate meals of chili, steak and pork chops.

After lunch, I asked the dietitians at my clinic if face redness and splotchiness could be an indication of an allergic reaction to a food sensitivity.  They looked at me in shock – I was really, really red – and stated, “Definitely, but you aren’t presenting typical symptoms of a food allergy.  And oh…by the way, are you aware that cake has gluten in it as well?”

I looked down at the slice of birthday cake in my hand, shrugged and stated, “I’ve already screwed up and ate gluten, I’m just going to enjoy this slice of cake and suffer for it.”

And suffer I did.

By no means is this experiment a definitive answer to the question, “Do I have a gluten sensitivity?” – but it is pretty darn close!

I’ll probably, glutton for punishment that I am, test my theory several more times – just to be able to report back to my own doctor my symptoms, reactions and findings.  I have a physical scheduled in February – plenty of time to test this fully.

I think I’ll skip my little tests while I’m at work though…..

Advertisements