Tonsils Takedown!

A sore throat is very uncommon to me especially if it last more than a day, I knew there was a problem. It’s the one symptom I have had lately that I could not connect to crohns, but ignored it anyway at first, thinking it was allergies/sinuses.The sore throat started Saturday night and was still there when I woke up on Sunday, but still decided to go on with my day. Met a friend for brunch, ran some errands and realized my throat was still sore and only gotten worst throughout the day. By 6pm on Sunday, I could barely swallow. I quickly did a google search for an urgent care center, and only found one that was open on a Sunday, wtf??

Walking from the parking lot to the check-in desk I was out of a breath, yeah . . . something was wrong . . Young lady at the check-in desk asked if I had problems of breathing and/or chest pains . . I said both. I had reflux issues earlier that day and I was out of breath . . I didn’t lie! but I later understood why it was important to ask. After waiting 45 minutes, I meet with the doctor and the first thing they said was their X-ray technician was gone for the day, but you can come back tomorrow to get an x-ray done. First thought, how is this a 24/7 urgent care center?!?  Secondly, it cost me a $50 co-pay just for a visit why would I come back?!? . . . .yes I am very cheap, because I’m broke!

They took my vitals and of course my blood pressure was high . . sighs . . . I hope its just stress related but my last few doctor appointments my blood pressures has been consistently high. I’m worried because hypertension does run in the family. I tell her my symptoms and before examining me she believed it was sinusitis, which I agreed, but then she told me to open wide and her response, “Your tonsils are HUGE!, oh my gosh!, open again! Wow” ..  I wanted to laugh but it hurt so bad lol They did a throat swap to test if it was strep, but the results were negative. She determined it was tonsillitis, which is something I had as a kid once, 20 years ago.  I was given a prescription for Augmentin and because it was Sunday night, no pharmacies were open, I had to wait until the Monday morning.

When I woke up on Monday it was like I ran into a brick wall. . . body aches, chills, and could barely breathe. When I was finally able to get out of bed went to my pharmacy to fill my prescription, still can’t believe it took an hour, maybe because it  was MLK day and they were short-staffed *shrugs*. As soon as it was ready I popped that pill like it was candy and was knocked out 1 hour later. Since then I’ve been home sleeping and drinking gallons of hot tea. I did a half day at work today, regret going but I was starting stress thinking about it since I have no back-up support. It is Day 3 on antibiotics and still have a sore throat, and dealing with crohn’s-like side effects, diarrhea, bloody stools, I had bad flashbacks. I haven’t been this sick in a long time and absolutely hate it! This is the 2nd viral infection I’ve had in the past year, does Humira play a factor?

Remaining positive and hope to be well again very soon!

I have missed drinking . . .

This past week has been a true test for my body because I’m totally torturing it  . . . ever since I landed back in DC last Sunday evening and went to work the next day, I have barely rested. Wednesday night I once again fell asleep in my work clothes, but I got a little help from a pink punch martini. And my social drinking continued with happy hour Thursday night, and a housewarming party last night. This is the most social I’ve been in like a year, and for me to be invited, RSVP yes, and actually have the energy to show up, is definitely  improvement.

But when you have active IBD it will always remind you,”I’m still here”. After running errands this morning, I have been in bed since 2pm and  it’s now 10pm. However, maybe my fatigue today might not just be from having IBD, I might actually be hung over lol Either way, my stomach is fine which is happily surprising. Lately when I do drink, I only consume vodka, gin, or dry white wine. I read somewhere that those type of drinks are gut friendly and I have to agree.

I was totally out of my comfort zone last night only knowing one of the hosts at the housewarming party. My anxiety was at a dangerous level at first , I was standing in the corner for a bit playing with their cat. Then my friend asked “What are you drinking?” and listed the many options. Looking around I noticed the  vast amount of wine bottles on their kitchen counter and the stash in their fridge, and swallowed hard thinking this is going to be a “ruff” night. After my 2nd cup of wine those butterflies were gone and I started feeling comfortable and talking to almost everyone at the party. Liquid courage is a beautiful thing 😉  Then peer pressure appeared, my friend the host, wanted to say cheers by taking a shot of vodka. Her friend who grew up in Ukraine happened to bring a bottle of peppered vodka. Of course i said no at first, I already had about 3 cups of wine, but I gave in and thought well it has to be the good stuff, and I’ll admit it was very smooth. After that drink I was pretty much done and hot!! I was like I haven’t been drunk in so long, it was a relaxing feeling. I silently said to myself, “I miss this feeling”.  I was never an alchie, but I have always enjoyed drinking and wine/beer festivals, so when I was diagnosed I was sad knowing that part of my life would have to “end”.

I’ll admit I’ve been feeling better lately, maybe Humira is working for me? I’ll know for sure in a few weeks, have a colonoscopy scheduled right before New Years just like last year, fingers crossed for remission!

#7daysofIBD Day 5 – Taco,taco!

In my uber ride to the airport in DC my driver said you have to eat real Mexican food when you’re in Texas , make sure you eat tacos. With IBD?, ill try . . We started today with breakfast tacos at Rudy’s, to be safe I got one taco and substituted a corn tortilla for the regular flour as a way to be “gluten-free”, with bacon and eggs. Other than gas pains  I’ve been okay.

  
For lunch we went to a Mexican restaurant called chuy’s, I thought soft tacos with rice, and I ate a little of the refried beans would be the safest. However  I’ve been bloated and all gas since and its been a day since a #2, definitely aiming for a salad for dinner.

   

Other than tummywoes, my energy levels has been great. I seem to have more energy than my non-IBD friends at the moment , not too shabby 😉

 

 

 

FODMAP Diet . . . .

I met with the nutritionist yesterday and I thought she was great. She looked over my medical history, asked a lot of questions and even suggested ways to reduce my stress in addition to a new diet. When we were discussing my recent bloating, she stated it could be a result of the iron pills I’ve been taking. She recommended that I try a product called “Pur-Absorb” for iron intake, and since I do not have a gallbladder she also suggested that I should start taking digestive enzymes. “Now Foods Super Enzymes” is the product she recommended.  I’ll look into both products.

For the next 30 days she wants me to try the FODMAP diet. It’s a diet that she recommends for her IBS patients and in some cases it can help people with IBD. It’s a strict diet, but luckily I have already incorporated aspects of it into my current diet.

FODMAP stands for: Fermentable, Oligosaccharides, Disaccharides, Monosaccharides, and Polyols. I would define each term but this posting would be an essay, so check out the links below.

http://www.ibsdiets.org/fodmap-diet/what-are-fodmaps/

http://www.aboutibs.org/site/treatment/low-fodmap-diet/

Basically the nutritionist told me for the next 30 days all I can eat is gluten-free, trans fat free, and no processed foods. Also to avoid the following:

  • All Dairy (only coconut milk is okay)
  • Garlic and Onions (can only consume onion and/or garlic infused oils)
  • Honey and artificial sweeteners
  • Soda, especially diet
  • Apples, mango, raspberries, watermelon
  • Raw vegetables
  • Wheat, beans, soy, rye, barley
  • Any frozen foods

Most of the things above I have already stopped eating, but giving up garlic and onions will be difficult. The one thing she said I can eat is tomatoes.  I was surprised because I do have GERD and I had to stop eating any type of pasta because of the sauce. She stated it probably was not the tomatoes itself, it might have been the garlic, onions, mushrooms, dairy, etc. that was in the sauce. It would be best to make my own sauce. In regards to meat she stated I should have no problems as long as I cook it myself, because a lot of prepared meat is cooked with garlic and/or onions.

So basically I will be cooking everything that I eat for the next few weeks. I will definitely share my recipes. The nutritionist also recommended that I download the FODMAP diet app, it cost $7 but I think its worth it. My favorite features so far are the food guide where you enter any type of food and it tells you whether it’s FODMAP friendly. The app also has recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert, and snacks. This diet will be a challenge but I’m somewhat excited because I love to cook, which is something I have stopped doing because I have had no energy in the past few months.

Since my appointment with her was going so well I decided to challenge her.  My appointment was at 12:30 pm and I did not have time to eat lunch beforehand. I told her when I leave I am most likely going to get fast food what should I get? She started laughing thinking I was joking, and I told her “No I’m dead serious” lol I mentioned how a Wendy’s grilled chicken sandwich has never bothered my stomach. She stated its good that I know it doesn’t irritate my stomach,  but would not recommend it. But she did admit its bound to happen that you will eat fast food when you’re on the road.  She suggested instead of fries or salad for a side, to order a bake potato and eat it with butter and salt/pepper. Which was exactly what I ordered and I had no stomach issues after eating that meal.  I think I like her 🙂

I have a follow-up appointment in two weeks and I plan to officially start this diet on Sunday after I go grocery shopping. Wish me luck! 🙂