About

*Warning: If you’re a friend/family member and you’re reading this blog, be warned that it gets pretty personal! And although you’ll learn things about me you probably never wanted to know, I think it’s super important to emphasise that inflammatory bowel disease – with all its embarrassing symptoms – is something that really needs to be talked about more. It’s a serious, chronic disease that we need to be able to talk about freely and without embarrassment if we’re to get proper treatment and heal ourselves.

I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis last year, at 29, after a few years of flares that I at first tried to ignore. Bleeding out of orifices that you aren’t supposed to bleed out of is not only terrifying, but also embarrassing. How do you explain it? And what sort of tests will they have to do?

Eventually, I sought medical treatment, and my first ‘official’ flare was put down to lactose intolerance, which was discovered upon testing. For about a year I lived quite happily and without flare, having cut 90% of dairy from my diet. This wasn’t too difficult, as I get more than enough cheese from my girlfriend ๐Ÿ˜‰ I missed milk in my cereal though – and I missed chocolate.

In 2013, after a flare that continued for 2 months, I reluctantly sought help again. I knew this was more that a ‘naughty dairy slip up’ – I mean come on, chocolate doesn’t make you excrete blood for 2 months!

Finally, after more tests, Ulcerative Colitis was diagnosed, and I was immediately put onto a short course of cortisone, followed by an indefinite course of Asacol.

My physician was happy with me. He said my case was totally treatable with drugs, and that ‘as a young person’, I shouldn’t have to cut out all the delicious foods that make life so drooliciously awesome. In fact, he believed that diet had nothing whatsoever to do with my flares, and would have no impact on the course of my UC.

I didn’t share this opinion.

I’ve lived in my body long enough to know that when I fill it with certain things, it bloats up like a blow-fish, or it sends me straight to the loo. Upon doing many hours of research after my diagnosis, I became convinced that inflammatory bowel diseases can successfully be managed through diet and stress management, and that’s what I’m attempting to do.

At present, I’m still on Asacol (it’s only been 2 months) but I intend to get myself right through diet, exercise and stress management. For years, I put anything I liked into my belly – and I likedย a lot of things. Sure, I never ate many takeaways and I tried to be healthy, but I’d never say no to that third slice of cake or my fourth chocolate of the day…

One of the best and most reliable resources I’ve found is SCDLifestyle.com, and their accompanying Facebook page. Jordan Reasoner and Steve Wright founded SCD Lifestyle after each suffering the awful effects of IBD. By following the tenets laid out in Elaine Gottschall’sย Breaking the Vicious Cycle, and carefully tailoring her diet guidelines to their own bodies’ needs, they were able to overcome their illnesses and are now living symptom free – and helping thousands of others to do it.

After reading page upon page of testimonials, I can’t deny that thereย mustย be something in this Specific Carbohydrate Diet approach to healing and restoring the gut.

While the worst of my symptoms have abated, thanks to the Asacol, I still have severe discomfort every day (at the start of my 90 days). Plus, the idea of living on chronic medication just doesn’t sit well with me.

So what have I got to lose? I’m committing to SCD for 90 days, as Jordan and Steve recommend in their book,ย Surviving to Thriving. If it’s helped so many others, maybe it can help me too.

PS: Just so you know, I have zero medical knowledge. I’m a copywriter, not a doctor, and everything I write on this site is my own personal opinion, and derived from my own experiences, which I wish to document and share. If you’re experiencing awful symptoms, see a doctor. Don’t ignore them! Testing and treatment is way less scary than what you’re going through now, I promise ๐Ÿ™‚ You need the meds to get you under control, and you need this diet to help fix you indefinitely.

So let’s give this 90-day thing a shot… What is there to lose?

 

PS: My little blog was recently featured here, on Little Bliss Book’s monthly blogger spotlight, and my life was totally madeย ๐Ÿ™‚ When my blog grows up, it hopes to be just likeย Little Bliss Book!

March Blogger Spotlight    Little Bliss Book

15 thoughts on “About

  1. Hi Catherine, I couldn’t agree with you more! Thanks for your kind words and for stopping by – it’s awesome to have you here ๐Ÿ™‚

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  2. Hi Debby, thanks for taking the time to visit my blog! All the best with the 90 day challenge, I too believe that natural remedies are always a better solution in the long term.

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      • Haha, and I should’ve read your comment first ๐Ÿ˜‰ No worries – I love receiving comments on my posts. AA for diarrhoea – I love it! Sometimes you really just need to talk about it, and it’s so useful to find others who are going through the same things.

        I am so interested in what you say about being able to identify exactly what causes your flares – and I’m so encouraged by it too. Do you mind if I ask what kinds of things trigger them for you? For me, I’m fairly convinced that certain types of food can do it – in fact, I blame my last flare on bran flakes and sweetcorn (at least I think it was the trigger), but obviously there’s more to it than that.

        I’m sorry you’ve had such a protracted and frustrating experience with your disease, but it sounds like you finally have a handle on it. You’re right- no specific diet can work for everyone, and the SCD Lifestyle guys always say that you have to ‘engineer’ your own diet and find what works for you. For example, rice is not allowed on SCD, but when I’m flaring, it’s the ONLY food I can tolerate.

        Thanks so much for stopping by my blog, taking the time to read my posts and give advice, and for your kind and encouraging words. I appreciate it very much ๐Ÿ™‚

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  3. So I found your “about me” page, guess I should have looked around before I started asking questions, lol. I was diagnosed with Crohn’s 10 years ago. Just last week I finally met with a young, smart doctor who is not on the verge of retirement or prescription happy. I will be undergoing tests again in April to determine if the initial diagnosis was correct or if I am actually dealing with a difference disease entirely. Good luck with your diet. From my own personal experience and knowledge of gastrointestinal diseases, everyone’s bodies are different and no one specific diet could possibly work for everyone who suffers from this. I have been off meds for 4 years and the only thing that has worked for me was trial and error limiting my own diet. I am getting to the point (finally) now that I pretty much always know if I flare, why it happened. But, it really wasn’t until recently that I really started to take care of myself so don’t get scared, it shouldn’t have taken me 10 years to figure out! You absolutely can control your symptoms through diet and exercise, I am really surprised the doctor you saw said that you couldn’t. I have had some bad experiences with doctors too, these diseases are hard to identify and even harder to treat. I would love to have someone to share experiences with, my husband keeps saying that I should find a support group but, how weird is that? Like, AA for diarrhea, lol. I wish you the best of luck with everything.

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  4. Hi! I just stumbled upon your blog an hour ago and have been reading it since then! I have severe IBS-like symptoms and Hashimoto’s disease. I’ve been trying to heal my “leaky gut” with the help of a functional doctor for the past 2 months. I really relate to your posts and really enjoy the way you write things ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m currently following the AIP diet, more or less. I tried SCD but there are lots of things on it that I can’t digest. I’m trying to sort out my own personal diet, as those diets are meant to be customized according to your own sensitivities and digestion issues.
    Anyway, i look forward to reading your next posts and wish you lots of luck for the upcoming months ๐Ÿ™‚
    Celine

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    • Hi Celine

      Thanks so much for your awesome feedback and extremely kind words. I agree – SCD is not ideal for everyone, and while I wished it would be solution for me, it wasn’t. I think paleo suits me better too. All the best in your journey – it can be a long one but it’s definitely worth it ๐Ÿ™‚ Take care, Debby PS: Your blog is so beeeaautiful – I’m just sad I don’t understand it! (the photos are amazing tho!)

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      • Thank you Debby! I’m currently working on the translation into English! ๐Ÿ™‚ Most of my recipes of the last couple weeks are aip or scd compliant, I will let you know when they’re translated if U like ๐Ÿ™‚ take care!

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