When I was at my worst with my histamine intolerance, I would have done anything to heal myself. Well. almost anything. I would not take antihistamines because I felt they would only mask the symptoms, and I would not take the DAO supplement because it is made from animal products.
So then what was left? Anything that went into or onto my body basically.
Back in those early days I was rife with symptoms. I had pruritus (invisible itching), hives, ten hot flashes a night, insomnia, intestinal issues, and a constant need to urinate. I was up half the night with all of it and scratching myself bloody during the day. Yes, I know, it paints a pretty picture doesn’t it?
But then things turned around when I started to heal. I used a combination of strategies. I started a food diary and eliminated foods I knew were causing reactions. I took supplements and introduced olive oil into my diet as a supplement and a skin product. I stopped taking hot showers and stopped using a razor on my legs. Within three months the itching stopped, and within six months I was confident enough in my healing process to travel to Europe. At the end of the first year, I was back to eating almost completely what I could eat before the worst of it, and I reduced my supplements to just olive leaf and ginger.
But here’s the thing. Many of you yearn to be “normal” again, but what I have to finally come to grips with, that I haven’t embraced fully until last night, is that it is a new normal. And lacking that thought, I’ve hurt myself over and over again with my careless eating and my disregard with what my body’s been telling me recently. But now I’ve hit a point where I need to address it and there’s no getting around it. I am still histamine intolerant. It did not go away, it’s just under control. And when I eat badly, it rears it’s ugly head and makes me miserable in new and different ways.
A “slowed system” and bloated belly are telltale signs that I’m doing something wrong. Add in a string of headaches and a bout with anger issues and well, it’s just not a pretty picture.
Last night was it though. I knew I should not eat what I was about to and I did it anyway. And I think I’ve finally reached the point where I am ready to eat clean again and not abuse my body any longer.
Mondays are my longer, tougher teaching days. I did two critiques in a row which means I spoke for roughly four hours to a room full of art weary children about their work. Then I came home and had a cup of white tea, watched a bit of the news and ran two miles. I came home and showered, and by then didn’t really want to cook dinner. So I decided to make a small side salad and microwave a Pad Thai frozen meal from Trader Joes. I’d read the label and thought it sounded safe enough, but once I nuked it, something I rarely do, it looked less than appetizing.
Side by side, I had a good look at what healthful looked like against unhealthful. The salad looked bright and crisp with veggies and olive oil, and the Pad Thai looked brown and flat. I thought, ya know you should take a picture and post this but then I was too embarrassed to admit I was going to eat this goopy looking thing. And for a moment I wasn’t going to. But I didn’t want to waste food. So I ate it anyway, knowing this was not a good decision. My leg broke out into a hive within minutes of finishing it.
Suffice to say I went to bed bloated and uncomfortable and did not have a good night’s sleep. And I only have myself to blame. Next time I even think about being lazy with food I’m going to look at that picture in my head of that brown disgusting mess.
But the good news is I think I’ve finally admitted to myself that I don’t need to be up all night with hot flashes and itching to know I need to maintain a clean diet. I’ve reached a threshold of new symptoms that I need to address.
I know a lot of you want me to tell you that one day you will not be histamine intolerant. I think the truer reflection on that is that you do not have to feel histamine intolerant. You can control it until it’s not even there. But if you don’t pay attention and you don’t eat clean, it will make its presence known.
I want to feel good again. Not bloated and yucky. So today is it. Butternut squash and apple soup tonight. Back to the old days of no crappy cheap restaurant food, no junk food, no excess sugar, no nothin’ that’s going to make me feel crumby.
I’m going strict and taking control of my body again! I’ll let you know how it goes.
In the meantime, tell me, what’s your threshold of discomfort? Many people write in and say that they just won’t deny themselves a certain food. What will it take to finally give something up you know is causing an issue? Share your story in the comments section.
Happy butternut squash day!