This year alone, Matt has been sick three times. When he caught a cold, he would be out of commission for an entire week. Which is not normal. This clued us into the possibility that there might be something going on, health-wise, of which we were unawares. So, on the recommendation of a friend, Matt went to see a specialist who tested him for food allergies. As it turns out, he is allergic to A LOT.
His allergies are as follows:
- Mild allergic reactions to corn & tomatoes
- Moderate allergic reactions to egg, milk, potatoes, wheat & baker’s yeast
- Strong allergic reactions to rice & soy
We were given a program to help treat the allergies. Basically, we need to eliminate all these food from our diet for three weeks, so that the symptoms they are causing have time to disappear and we can get a grasp on what it feels to be like, normally, while not eating them. Then we will slowly test out each food to see if it causes allergies on its own, starting with the lowest allergens and testing one food at a time, every four days. So, for instance, after three weeks, Matt will eat a large portion of fresh corn to see if there is a reaction. A reaction could be any number of symptoms: headache, joint ache, acid reflux, gagging, gas, upset stomach, etc. We wait four days until testing the next food because sometimes symptoms can wait that long to show up.
The goal is to not only figure out which foods are the culprits, but also to “detox” from the foods long enough so that he can handle them again, in moderation, without adverse symptoms. In the long run, we hope to be able to eat all of these foods again, but they will have to be consumed in moderation and only after a long hiatus.
We still have a lot to learn about Matt’s food allergies, but this is just a post to let you know what’s going on in our lives and to share with you how we’re dealing with it.
I did not get allergy tested, but chances are that I share some (or many) of the same food allergies. So, I am going on the diet with Matt, as is Phoebe. And because I can tell I have a sugar addiction, we are getting rid of processed sugar in our diet, as well (honey and pure maple syrup is ok).
Today is the day we started our three week “detox.” And it was a little overwhelming. We are oatmeal cooked with almond milk for breakfast. But we didn’t realize that the snap pea crisp we brought for Phoebe to snack on at church has rice as an ingredient! So we’ll have to find something else. We snacked on a banana and some prosciutto instead (we went grocery shopping on the way home). Then we grilled asparagus, chicken and mushrooms for lunch. I got hungry AND started craving chocolate, so made an almond-milk-and-honey-hot-cocoa, then (an hour later) mashed up a banana with honey, shredded coconut and cocoa powder; however, the heaviness of the carbs caused my blood sugar to spike fiercely, so I polished off the rest of the prosciutto to help level it off (I struggle with insulin resistance and have to be careful about balancing carbohydrates with proteins). We also snacked on an avocado. Then, for dinner, ate lentils cooked in chicken stock and a salad with a homemade mustard dressing. And for dessert? I’m trying a crisp recipe that I threw together out of raspberries, pears, oatmeal, coconut oil, honey and maple syrup. It’s runny, but sweet. And the oats kind of help to soak up the juices!
Our next obstacle? The MOUNTAIN of dirty dishes. Oy vey!
There isn’t much in our cupboards or fridge right now, but I hope to pick up more foods this week: fruits, nut butters, meats and veggie snacks. Without spending money on dairy and grains, we have a lot leftover to indulge in more meats and fruits. I plan on making hummus in the next few days, and perhaps trying my hand at homemade almond milk!