Wednesday, March 19, 2008


I woke up this morning with a headache like I haven't had since I found out that cheese was the source of my migraines. The whole works...head felt like it was being squeezed in a vise, sparkly black spots in my vision, and nausea. Pain, I can deal with. vision? heh, I can handle it. But nausea? I'll convert to any religion whose god can make it go away. Now. Please.

This turned out to be a sinus headache instead of a migraine (as one gentle push on my sinuses confirmed) and I've been trying to figure out what could have triggered this. I've been feeling stuffy over the past few days but I figured I was just coming down with a cold. My sinus problems are food related, not pollen/mold related, and this is a good thing because I have quite a bit of control over what I can eat and less over what I breathe.

Then it hit me. Yogurt. I've been eating a lot of yogurt lately. Plain yogurt, mixed berries, and a wee bit of honey granola for some crunch. It's a lovely breakfast, which provides protein and a lot of fruit and will satisfy me until lunch (and sometimes beyond).

I saw a gasteroenterologist a few weeks ago to be tested for celiac disease. When I did the food challenge a few years ago, wheat was one of the foods I was sensitive too and while I followed the elimination diet to a T, I felt absolutely freaking great. But it seemed that if I had even a single molecule of wheat (ok, I exaggerate), then the symptoms returned...and it took a long time for them to subside.

All in all, the doctor's visit was a really unpleasant experience. I tested negative for celiac disease (which is a good thing) and while trying to explain my situation to the doctor, she essentially cut me off by saying "just do it." "You felt great while on that elimination diet; then just follow it. You find it difficult to get exercise? Join the gym and it will become a habit." I know that going to a doctor isn't meant to be a pleasant experience; they ideally tell you what you need to hear, not what you want to hear. I guess I was hoping for some better feedback on how to overcome my reluctance to do what I know will work. I left the appointment in an irritated mood and feeling more than slightly humiliated. Next time I pay $200 to a professional woman to humiliate me, she'd better be wearing thigh-high leather boots.

Anyway, the only reason I bring this up is that she told me I should start eating yogurt because it's an inexpensive and healthy way to get that good, beneficial-to-the-gut bacteria. When I told her about my sensitivity to dairy, she responded by saying that people with dairy allergies tend to be able to eat yogurt. I told her that I don't have a dairy allergy but get stuffed up if I eat too much dairy. She repeated that the chemical transformation from milk to yogurt eliminates that.

I should have just listened to my own body. While I really like yogurt, I know I shouldn't eat too much of it. When I listened to myself and my own body, I was ok. When I listened to her, I get an incredibly painful sinus headache.

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