Wednesday, September 21, 2005

A Sample Size of One: Experimenting with my own Body

For the past two weeks, I've been getting random bellyaches.  It's not only unpleasant and painful, but also scary.  I wonder if I am getting an ulcer, if my fibro-related IBS has taken a turn for the worse, or worse yet, if I have cancer.  Because I have so many "food sensitivities" (I am told not to call them allergies), I of course suspect that I am eating something that disagrees with me.  But what?

Yesterday, I ate breakfast and had no pain, but after lunch, I developed a stomachache.  This is what I ate:  a small stir-fry with ¼ pound of shrimp, broccoli and mushrooms.  For seasoning, a little white wine.  Since I've never had a problem with the veggies or seafood, I suspect the wine.  For dinner, I have ¼ pound scallops, red cabbage and mushrooms.  No white wine, no tummy ache.

Today, I have a different breakfast, no tummy ache.  For lunch, I have 6 oz tilapia with broccoli and mushrooms, no wine, no tummy ache.  For supper, salmon, mushrooms and yellow squash.  No wine.  So far, no tummy ache—BUT I may not have waited long enough yet.

If I get no tummy ache, does it prove anything?  Nope.  Could have been a bug that is gone now, or something else.  What I need to do is repeat it, without and WITH the wine—see if I can replicate the results.  Even then, it could be coincidental.  Or not.

I don't know any reason why wine would give me a tummy ache.  I don't know it's the wine.  But it might be.  I don't know any other way to find out, do you?  The doctors never seem to have any answers.  Or, not enough of them to help with all the issues that crop up.  So I keep trying, a little bit at a time, to keep myself healthy and safe, experimenting with a sample size of one:  me.

I am certain of nothing but the Heart's affections and the truth of the Imagination- John Keats


Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Testing the Tummy Ache, part 2

The theory that it might be alcohol causing the tummy ache has been negated by one failed test. Last night, I ate salmon, shiitakes, and yellow squash with olive oil and garlic. Then, I was sick all evening and all night and still don’t feel well.

I now suspect these items, in this order:

Ø The shiitakes (The first tummy ache I had in this series was the last time I had spaghetti with shiitakes.)
Ø The garlic(Onions are on my don’t eat list for fibro, maybe garlic has a bad effect, too)
Ø Portion size (maybe smaller portion sizes would help—I need to do that anyway)
Ø The salmon (the salmon, though it did not taste spoiled, did not seem good or want to go down—could I have had too much fish in the past few days—all I’ve been eating is fish—I always eat the fish first when I shop, so it won’t spoil.)

I will have to test them all in order. Starting with NOT eating shiitakes for a while and seeing if the tummy ache goes away and if so, reintroducing them.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Of course, it might not be any of these things but something else entirely, but I am going to the doctor in December and if it gets worse, or keeps on too long, I'll go sooner.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

Yesterday, I avoided eating both shiitakes and garlic--no stomachache. (I also had no alcohol.) I also felt better and more energetic than I had been feeling all week.

I have to admit that I have no idea what causes my various problems.

I did eat peas, which I've been suspicious of, and I still feel OK, so far. I worry that I may be allegic to legumes, as I am allergic to soy. I'd like NOT to be.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

So far today, I have eaten no shiitakes or garlic and had no stomach aches. I am preparing a late dinner now of lamb, portabellas and zucchinis. It seems illogical that I coudl eat one kind of mushroom and not another--so maybe it's not the shiitakes, but . . . but somehow, it might be?

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

I should really be keeping track of exactlyw hat I eat, at least until I get this solved. Help bread, toasted with Canoleo. I slice. 2 prunes.

Mary Stebbins Taitt said...

I have been being extremely careful WHAT I eat and HOW MUCH I eat all week, and the good news was, when I got weighed this morning, I'd lost weight. YAY. But even better, no tummy aches and my fibromylagia and arthritis pain is improved!!!!

Problem: How to live in the world and attend parties etc and have fun and eat with friends and so on without ruining the gains (and losses) I've made.



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