From Here to Health

My journey back from autoimmune disease

Autoimmune Protocol…Baby step 2

So I miss my morning Kombucha, but I am hanging in there. Giving it up hasn’t seemed to make a difference in my bloating  and digestive upset.  In fact, it’s worse!  That is why I have decided to move on to step 2- removing seeds.  For me, this means sunflower seed butter (which I totally love) and chocolate (which I totally love more).  Of course there are other seeds like pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds and coffee beans.    I don’t consume very much of any of those so not a super big deal for me.  Chocolate, however, is my only real treat.  I can’t do gluten or dairy and most other “treats” seem to fall into one or both of those categories.  It is also my stress relief at times.  I know, I know…it is  not the healthiest  form of stress relief.  I am hoping that I can replace it with prayer, meditation or yoga.  Or maybe writing.  You guys may be seeing some seriously random posts as I adjust to life without chocolate.  I am keeping the kombucha out for now, but seeing as it didn’t really provide any relief to cut it out, I may add it back in soon:)  I am also trying to convince my doctor to test me for SIBO so will keep you guys in the loop on that too.

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What Went Well Wednesday

I am going to admit that I didn’t keep a list yesterday like I did last Wednesday, so this may not be completely chronological.  But here are the highlights of the last few days.

1. Increased my deadlift to 135#.  I know, I know…that is still a light deadlift, but it is the first time I have been able to increase my weight without back pain so I am stoked!

2. Increased my benchpress to 75#. (FYI- these aren’t maxes, they are just working weight doing multiple sets of reps)

3. Had a girls’ CrossFit lunch with 10 ladies from the gym.  We awesome food, fellowship and fun.  I love these ladies like family:)

4. Got my new digestive enzymes with HCL.  Seriously hoping that they help with the bloating.

5. Haven’t had a night this week where I was up all night! Yeah!!

6. Got a 2 hour massage from a massage therapist, CrossFitting friend.  Heaven!

7. Only one of my kids required an expensive antibiotic for the pink-eye that ran through our house.

8. Took a long walk with my boys. (picture below)

9.  Discovered Chris Kresser’s podcast and love it!

10. Made hubby made me awesome sweet potato chips!

Hello Kitty Sleep Mask

Hello Kitty Sleep Mask

My Newphew, the Easter Bunny

My Nephew, the Easter Bunny

Coop and Pres on our Walk

Coop and Pres on our Walk



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Church…the hardest place to go paleo?

So I finally decided not to take the cracker part of communion today.  For the longest time, I just didn’t even think about it.  For all my vigilance in other areas, it just didn’t occur to me that I was taking in a dose of gluten with my communion.  I think it was because I wasn’t thinking about nourishing my body but rather my spirit when it came to taking communion.  As I have continued to struggle with a degree of digestive issues I have been looking at things that could be contributing and this came to mind several months ago.  You would probably think that once I made the connection I would have immediately cut it out, but I was very reluctant to do so.  First off, it is a sacred ritual and we really don’t have very many of those in the Church of Christ.  My church is a very liberal version of the Church of Christ denomination, but there are still very few things like that.  I have been to Catholic, Methodist and Episcopalian churches that were (in my opinion) pretty heavy on the ritual type things.  I was a little turned off by them when I was younger, I think because it didn’t feel authentic to me.  But as I have gotten older, things like that seem to hold more appeal. I have realized the connection is dependent on me, not the ritual per se.  The point is, communion felt like a sacred ritual that I didn’t want to give up.  And secondly, I think I had this notion that God would surely suspend the laws of nature and gluten sensitivity during communion because, come on, it’s COMMUNION. It wasn’t like I was trying to rationalize eating one of the ever-present donuts that are in abundance at Sunday service.  So today I just took the juice.  I’m wondering next week if I should take my own gluten-free cracker with me?

On a similar note, I have found that between the donuts and snacks in Sunday school, it is hard to keep my kids gluten-free at church.  In the beginning, I spoke to their teachers and even sent snacks with my youngest.  Over time, I somehow got out of the habit of doing those things.  But today my boys’ (who are 10) teacher told us that they are the only 2 boys in the class who never eat a donut when all the other boys run to the kitchen to get one.  And my daughter (who is 5) told me today that they had 2 snacks in class today but they both had wheat and gluten so she didn’t eat them.  I was super proud.  They are listening to me.  And they are trusting the information I give them and making decisions to benefit their health even when I am not around.  That is obviously what I want.  I want them to know that they have the power to impact their own health and they don’t have to just do (or eat) what everybody else is doing.  And I am choosing to believe that God brought these revelations to me at church today to let me know that we can go gluten-free at church and it will be ok, communion cracker or not:)

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The Virgin Diet

So based on a recommendation from a dear friend and health coach, I am going to do the Virgin Diet.  I have known for 2 years that I have a gluten allergy, but I have a strong feeling that I have other intolerances as well.  The plan calls for a 21 day elimination cycle and then a systematic reintroduction of the possibly offending foods.  Because of the holiday season and travel I am not going to start in earnest until December 26th.  That would put my finishing the elimination cycle on January 15th.  However, I am going to start the breakfast shake component tomorrow.  I am also going to try to eat the appropriate foods most meals until then, but I know I can’t be 100% until after Christmas so I don’t want to set myself up to fail!  Even though I am not really doing this to lose weight (although I could stand to drop a few) I will probably post a before and after weight just for the heck of it.  I know there are foods that aggravate my autoimmune conditions and I suspect they are dairy and eggs.  This program will give me some guidance for figuring that out.  My intent is to make short daily posts through this process about what is working, what is tough and just how I feel in general.

The 7 foods that I will be eliminating are:

1. gluten

2. corn

3. soy

4. sugar and artificial sweeteners

5. eggs

6. dairy

7. peanuts

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