Over the past month or so, I've had a lot of stomach issues, trouble sleeping, and itching in small places on my body. I didn't think much of it, until my boyfriend said something about it...something along the lines of my stomach hurting every day and I should see someone about it.
I thought maybe it was caused by my increase in coffee intake, so I decided to go on a coffee detox (I'm on day 11 and I still have intense cravings for coffee...I'll give myself a few more weeks and then allow it back in...I was only *slightly* addicted so I know I need to reset my system and only allow it in small doses).
Anyways - about 5 days into it, I was still super itchy...to the point where I was scratching so hard I was bleeding...it was bad. It almost felt like there were little bugs crawling under my skin and I couldn't stop it. It wasn't all over my body...just on my shins and calves, on my back where my bra sits, and it was just starting on my forearms.
As I was standing at the kitchen counter eating cheese and crackers, I looked at the ingredients of the crackers and it hit me like a ton of bricks....the first ingredient was wheat. Holy crap.
I realized that I had unintentionally been eating that way since just after Thanksgiving. It wasn't bad...or so I thought. It started small...some cheese and crackers here, apple or pumpkin pie there, can't forget the brownies too! Oh...and mac and cheese...love me some mac and cheese!
But I don't eat that way...I have a gluten intolerance and avoid eating anything that is going to cause me to feel sick or harm my body. And here I thought I was just doing it in small doses, until my body showed me otherwise.
This ^^ is how I felt...constantly. I couldn't stop itching. I also had stomach issues...it went back and forth between constipation and diarrhea. I had heartburn (so severe it hurt up into my right ear), and talk about irritable. I wasn't sleeping well, which makes me super grumpy (sorry, Scott). My neck and back and knees have been super sore and full of inflammation.
And I'd been living this way for a couple months!! It just became normal for me to feel that way. What?! How does that make any sense?! I. Was. Miserable.
So as of last Thursday, January 21, I cut out the gluten completely. Again.
I'm so sick of itching, of always hurting in my stomach and my joints, of being severely tired and grumpy...my legs have such a distinct rash on them, I'm happy it's winter and they don't have to be seen.
So today is day 6 of avoiding gluten, wheat, grains, etc. I can't say that I am 100% better, but I can say that I am starting to feel "normal" again. I'm not having severe stomach pains anymore...I don't have heartburn anymore...when I feel like I have to go to the bathroom, I actually go to the bathroom!! Feeling that way and having constipation is one of the worst feelings...so frustrating.
I am still having issues sleeping, but it's getting better...I wake up several times at night to pee so now I have to figure out a cut off point at night to stop the water. And the rashes aren't spreading. It's hard to not scratch them, but I've been using coconut oil with essential oils, as well as Aquaphor lotion. I'm just trying to let them heal.
I wanted to share this story because I know how frustrating it can be to have all these problems and not know what is causing them. I am a Health Coach and know that gluten affects me this way...yet I was eating it.
I am certainly not perfect and enjoy food just as anyone else does. But I also know that my body doesn't tolerate it and it was telling me...well, I'm finally listening and I can hear it loud and clear.
I'm going to keep track of my progress because I want to see how long it takes for my body to heal after being glutened. I can tell you that I don't want to feel this way again.
I'm certainly not an expert on this, but listening to your body is key. It will tell you everything you need to know.
Have a fabulous day!!
With love and wellness,
Certified Health Coach, doTERRA Wellness Advocate, and LTL Weight Management Coach