Saturday, May 17, 2014

Allergies. Yay?

Upon my return home, results of my pending allergy screening were awaiting me. With bated breath, I reviewed the results. It was mostly unsurprising. 

I suppose I am allergic to dairy products?

I had allergy screening for food done in March, as I still could not figure out why my UC was still flaring up (despite elimination diets, supplements, etc). When I was told by my well-meaning Gastroenterologist that it was time to consider more aggressive options to manage my UC, I became fearful of stronger immunosuppressants, steroids, or even surgery. Although I have been living with the recurrence of flare-ups, the thought of having to be more "aggressive" with my treatment did not cross my mind. I suppose I am accustomed to some level of feeling unwell.

I was surprisingly upset by the results - I am well aware of my sensitivity to dairy products, but having certainty that my body rejects all dairy was very depressing. Add in the egg allergy and gluten-intolerance, and I felt pretty overwhelmed. I may have shed a few tears of a gluten-free wrap falling apart and after evenings out where there was nothing on a menu that I could eat besides a salad (no cheese/dressing/croutons/etc).

My saviour has been smoothies. I would have been starving every lunch if I couldn't go home and whip one of these colorful beauties up in the Vitamix.

Smoothies were a staple when I was at my worst health-wise, and they are my favorite source of getting in nutrients, and they happen to taste delicious. Despite their sometimes unappealing color. 

I promise. They taste fantastic.

Keeping it classy!

Oh, and lots of green juice. My morning elixer!
Another staple when my UC was out of control. I couldn't tolerate any raw vegetables, and this was the simplest way to get in nutrition from veggies without my belly being annihilated. I still enjoy a fresh-made glass each morning. 

I'm flipping through former issues of VegNews, looking for inspiration for plant-based and gluten-free dietary options. So far, it's more admiration of the culinary expertise of the writers rather than actual initiation of recipes, but that will soon come once I gain some more motivation. Cashew brie, anyone?

I'm determined to stick to these dietary restrictions if it means an overall improvement, or dare I say it, remission of my UC. I'm going to overcome these challenges, and become even more kickass for it!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The Red is Back!

Been a bit AWOL as of late. I promise I have been behaving myself. Like a proper lady.


So what was I really up to?

Only having the most AMAZING time in South East Asia!

I trekked through former Viet Cong jungle.

Slept under mosquito nets in small villages.

Wandered odorous and busy local markets.

I was able to relax on gorgeous beaches.

Ride a bicycle through rice fields.

Drink Vietnamese tea while watching scooters pass by.

... and also turned another year older!

After this vacation, I felt so well-rested and ready to take on real life again. And, to no surprise, to more health challenges to face upon arrival. Which I am trying to move though with a more zen approach, taking mind to the calm nature of the Buddha and kind people I encountered in South East Asia.