Thursday, October 06, 2011

....continued from yesterday.

(This is Part 2. Part 1 was just yesterday. I am sooo sorry to have left a cliffhanger, peeps! Really! I only divided it up because the post was getting so long, and I knew that what was yet to be written was going to be even longer, and I also knew that it would need photos and links in order to be...well...bloggy LOL. So here you go: Suspense suspended. xo )

So I guess I do have one more thing to say about the past couple of weeks before I move on to talk about the doctor's appointment Tuesday, and it is basically this:
What a whooooole lotta effort, for very little return.

I mean, I stopped eating a whole bunch of everything, and for what. The rash returns. I actually see myself actually getting itchy a couple of hours after eating certain meals, but I can't figure out what component is causing it. My stomach is also bugging me after certain meals. I am left feeling fatigued. And so what happens is that I get a little defeatest-depressed about the whole thing. I suffer from the whole notion that no matter what I cut out, or take, or don't matter what I aint gonna work.
That's the pity-pot I tend to climb onto in my darker moments.

Well. It turns out I wasn't feeling so hot because what I cut out is not what I am sensitive to at all. Nope. Not even close. Even the NewDoc seems a little surprised.

I am highly sensitive to:
Green beans.

Kidney beans.

Hard to believe.
Here. See for yourself.

Green beans. Now, I like green beans. I am not going to feel deprived without them (there's enough other green veggies on the planet I like), but it sure is interesting to me that I roasted a huge sheet pan full of green beans for myself last week.

Kidney beans. I also really like kidney beans, although I usually only eat them if they're at a salad bar or something. I rarely buy them. However. It turns out that there are other beans in the same family, like the cannellini bean for example (which is a *ahem* white kidney bean) which I DO buy all the time, and in fact, over the past couple of weeks, I must have used 3 or 4 cans in soups and mixed in with sauteed veggies. I have to double check with NewDoc, because I see conflicting things online, but I think this also means I have trouble with pinto/refried beans or black beans, which I also eat fairly regularly....and possibly garbonzo and maybe even soy. And I have to say this: look at those test results! Kidney beans are all the way OFF THE CHART. I'd thought I had heard it all with food allergies, and I have never in my life heard anyone say they are allergic to kidney beans. Ever. I know some people say they have a hard time digesting them, but I always thought they were complaining about being gassy. But allergic? Sheesh.

Eggs. Now, Eggs are a whole little mess in and of itself, because eggs hide out in all sorts of weird places that I am now going to need to watch out for. Fortunately, in my 20's I was a vegan for long enough to know how to get around all the no-egg-nonsense and still be a happy camper. I know how to find products that use egg substitutes, and I know how to make them, too. I don't ever "jones" for a scrambled egg. But I what I am going to miss (and by miss, I mean mourn with occasional woeful sob) is my favorite poached egg breakfast. *sigh* I should also point out to you that I have eaten eggs every weekend these past three weeks, thank you very much. NewDoc said what was most interesting about my test results is that I am more sensitive to the white than the yolk. For most folks it's the other way around, and they can still have scrambled egg whites. Once again, I amaze the medical community LOLOL

So those three foods are in the "Avoid" category, but I had 4 other items show up in the "Moderate" category...and NewDoc says I should avoid them, too (at least for now). These are the ones that are Blowing. My. Mind.

I am moderately sensitive to:
Brewer's Yeast.

Yah. I know.
You can blink, but it won't go away.
Let's discuss them individually. And yes.
Let us save the best for last.

Pineapple. I like it, I often love it, but the best one I ever had was in Hawaii and it kinda ruined me for all pineapple after that anyhow, big loss. I will not feel deprived. There's enough tangy tart sweet fruit in the world. I'm over it.

Brewer's Yeast
, not to be confused with Baker's Yeast. This means no beer, no alcohol, and most importantly (for me), no wine. Now, I don't drink all that often, but I really do dig having a glass of wine from time to time (not to mention some bubbly), so this is gonna get interesting. It's not going to kill me to forgo it, but having just watched 6 hours of programming about Prohibition, I'm a little peeved about this one.

Almonds. Almonds???!!! Are you insane?! Well, it's also another thing I can live without. Like the greenbeans and the pineapple, there are plenty of other substitutions out there that I can eat and be satisfied with. But do you know how often I eat almonds?? Almost daily. I keep little bags of raw almonds in my glove box for a healthy snack on the run! I drink almond milk! I top hot cereal and salads with almonds! Because peanuts are typically more of an issue than almonds, I've been using almond butter instead of peanut butter! I even use soaps and lotions that have almond oil in them!! Smear my allergens all over my body---yay hoo!! woot!!

But nothing compares to what is for me the real kicker.
WHO THE F#%& is allergic TO GARLIC?????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

(Well, apparently AmpuTeeHee is, that's who).

Can I just get this out?????????

1) Do you know how much garlic I have had just in the last 3 weeks alone?? LOTS. Garlicky greens, garlic in dressings, garlic in vegetable juice smoothies. I even ate more garlic than usual because I was sick and garlic is supposedly good for a cold...NOT TO MENTION (yes, I am yelling, I know, sorry) that garlic is supposed to be one great natural anti-fungal, and I was told THAT MY RASH WAS A FUNGUS.

2) Garlic is awesome, and there is really no suitable replacement for it. None. And I went to culinary school, and got an "A" for creativity. There is no suitable replacement for garlic. Nothing compares. That being said, you are going to see me experimenting like a madwoman with things like raw horseradish and maybe some different peppers or wasabi, just to get that "nose heat" thing going in place of raw garlic...and maybe I'll be using shallots more often when it calls for cooked garlic. I'm open to suggestions on this one, if you have any. Please prove me and my belief system about there being no suitable replacement wrong.

3) Not only do I use garlic a lot, but it's also IN a lot of the things that I love and prefer to buy prepared because there are only just so many hours in the goshdanged day. Salsa? Hummus? Pesto? I could go on and on. It kinda makes me cry to think of what I will have to make from scratch if I want it. I know how to make all of those things, I just lack the time some days. Who doesn't. And eating out?? Ha! Garlic will lurk in everything, including stocks and sauces. By the way, do you know that when I go to a chinese restaurant, one of my favorite dishes is Dry Fried String Beans, which is green beans with garlic and ginger (I guess next time I just ask for the bowl of rash, yah??).

4) Garlic, sweet garlic. OH THE IRONY. Ok. I used to be a professional chef. I used to work for Whole Foods, and I used to work in a restaurant, and I used to work for several catering companies large and small, and let me tell you something about chefs. When we'd get a request for "no garlic please, I have an allergy" we would cover our mouths and cough, "Bullshit!" into our palms. We all knew that no one was EVER truly allergic to garlic (because who the fuck is allergic to garlic). Those people....those people...they don't have a garlic allergy, they just have a preference for no garlic.

That is what we all said.
All of us.
And we'd take the garlic out of the dish, and maybe curse you a bit if you were inconveniencing us during the evening rush.
And then we'd laugh at you.

Which is now: At me.
Yah, that's it. Curse me and laugh at me.
Because I am allergic garlic.

I cannot even tell you how long it is going to take me get over the fact that I have become exactly what I cannot stand about people. Hahahahahaha. And this aint the first time, lemme tell you. For every finger I have pointed, I have walked a mile in those shoes. For real. But to have it happen with the garlic is just truly unbelievable. I mean, I feel like I might need to carry around a copy of my test results with me so that if I go out to eat I can storm into the kitchen and prove that I really am ACardCarryingAllergicToGarlicFreak.

So where does this leave me.

Well, I cannot believe it, and NewDoc seemed like he kinda couldn't believe it either. Because, OH! The results of the stool test showed NO CANDIDA. A huge hooray for that, but he and I both think that refined sugar is probably not doing me any favors and I should avoid it. But where I thought I was going to have to stop all sugar, even natural sugars...nope. I can eat fruit and things like dates and agave, etc. He even says a little caffeine is fine. And I'm not allergic to dairy or wheat, "so bring me mah slab o' bread an hunk o' cheese, please!"

Well, okay. Not for awhile. He actually wants me to do another course (a stronger and longer course) of the diflucan, just to whack this out of my system. And meanwhile, he wants me to do a Detox Diet for 3 weeks to clean myself out and hit the reset button. Basically it's a fruit and a simple grain in the morning, then steamed veggies for lunch and dinner topped with a healthy oil.
I can do that.

red potatoes, zucchini, eggplant, bok choy, bell pepper,
with a dab of a blend of some really good butter and olive oil

Hell, I can do just about anything for 3 weeks. After that, the goal is to eat healthier in general, avoid the foods I am sensitive to, eat more whole foods and less processed ones and even though I am not allergic to wheat or dairy, eat them less frequently than I used to. Eat more veggies, basically. Then on an ongoing basis, maybe do another round of simple detox-y type eating session as the seasons change. Just to hose myself out. He hasn't said this to me yet, but I have a hunch that some day, when my system calms down, I might be able to rotate those moderate allergens back in on the rare occasion. We'll see. But for now, I'll at least hold on to this thought, as it will bring me much happiness:

I'm not allergic to chocolate!


~Donna~ said...


I have an issue with garlic AND onions.

Those USED to be the first two ingredients in everything I cooked.

I am definitely interested to follow along with your experimentation.

At least now you know.

Lorena said...

OH, honey. As someone with crazy food allergies... I'm with ya, sistah. I'm with ya.

The Bon said...

I have a friend who is allergic to onions, and has some issues with garlic too. Man, garlic. Sorry. :(

I hope things start to clear up now though!!

Gwen said...

Great Jumpin Jehosaphat that is WRONG!

not supergirl said...

Oh my, that is too much! People can be allergic to green beans? I had no idea. And garlic... well, I'd probably be drowning myself in chocolate. Good luck, so glad you have something to work with at least.

painting with fire said...

Oh ugh - garlic!!! Poor you! Am sorry - wheat would have been easier or at least less painful. At least you'll be able to fix the problem although as you say eggs can be hard to avoid.

Gwyndolyn O'Shaughnessy said...

I had a few thoughts (!) while I was reading your list ...

1. Eggs? Watch out for flu shots or other vaccinations!

2. Garlic? Ouch. Ow, ow, ow. Give me a paper cut and pour lemon juice on it. ... What about trying ginger? It might be odd in spaghetti sauce, but it'll give a similar nose-clearin' WHEE!

3. ~Donna~ is right: onions and garlic (shallots, chives, maybe leeks) are all alliums.

(sorry: you probably know this already. i'm still at work, so my Advicer is stuck in the ON position)

Best of luck from a lurker!

(formerly) no-blog-rachel said...

Holy moly. I went through similar tests about 2.5 years ago - I'm allergic to egg whites too. Not so badly that if I have any that I'll die, but if I eat even half an egg white, I definitely feel crappy. Who knew? I also only can have dairy 2x a week and there are a few others on the list too. One thing I can tell you - when I avoid those foods, I feel one hell of a lot better, and I've been able to lose weight for the first tine in years. Having to make those changes can suck but I hope they end up being as worth it to you as mine are to me. XO

Linda said...

What an odyssey you've been on. The devil is making ask, how is your thyroid/adrenal function???

berlinBat said...

Oh garlic.. This makes my heart ache for you! In Germany ramsoms (is this a plural already?) is often used as a seasoning because of its garlicky taste and smell. I don't know if you get it in the CA but if so, give it a try. You might also be able to get/order it as a dried seasoning (similar to dried oregano), but the smell changed in my opinion quite a lot when the plant is dried. Also the pesto made out of ramsoms makes a good pasta sauce. All the best for your search!

berlinBat said...

To add a disclaimer: I do not know whether ramsoms (a.k.a. wild garlic) is a relative of garlic...