Well, my blogging fell apart. I had a feeling I wasn’t going to be very good at it. My son got out of school yesterday for summer vacation, and for some reason I thought I should pop on here for an update. Under gobs of spam comments (Ugh, I HATE that), I got several good comments, comments about people wanting to try this, people who are wondering if it might help them. Well, I cried! Seriously! I was thinking I was talking to myself here!
So, here’s the update. I love Paleo. I’ve been at it 16 months and have lost 46 pounds. I went from a size 16 to a size 4. I had one question about a person who didn’t need to lose weight, but wanted to try it, stating he/she had lost weight due to RA. My understanding is that RA speeds up a lot of stuff in your body, making you lose weight. In the olden days, before RA meds, people with RA were very thin (have a pic of my great grandmother illustrating that point). Now-a-days, I think it’s more common to be overweight due to RA because many of the meds (especially steroids) can cause weight gain. I’m not a doctor, so this is NON-MEDICAL advice (yes, ask your doctor), but I think if you slow down your disease activity, your weight is likely to stabilize. I would also talk to your doctor about an exercise program, as I find exercise puts a little weight on me, but I also struggle (needed a physical therapist) to find exercise I could do without setting off my joints. In other words, I think Paleo is probably worth a try, especially if it decreases your disease activity.
I have been finding so many good things to eat! My new sin is coconut milk ice cream (So Delicious brand). Don’t get the cookie dough flavor (not Paleo), but I believe the chocolate, mocha, and mint chip all pass the Paleo test.
I am still following these rules:
NO tomatoes (most people can eat them, but apparently I can’t)
NO white potatoes
100% of the time on the above rules.
I have some sugar (chocolate, cinnamon roasted almonds)
I have some alcohol (the clear, non-grain ones, vodka, rum)
My weight is down to 139. I have much much much better energy. My blood pressure is way down (was up to 130s over 90s, now down to 90s over 60s, maybe a little too low, although I struggled with low BP pre-RA). My RA is way better managed, but it still takes active management. I can go 8 days without my 2 day/week Enbrel shot without pain, but I still need the Enbrel. I do wonder if I totally cut the sugar and alcohol and boosted the exercise if I could stop, but I’m not there, and I’m not perfect. The diet makes me feel SO MUCH better that I’m not very tempted to cheat anymore. Once in a while I do crave a deep dish Chicago-style pizza, but no pizza yet!
I’ve been having neck issues, likely due to previous RA problems. My ligaments are not tight, and I have what the physical therapist called “an instability.” My neck loses stability, pinches nerves, and causes wicked pain shooting down my arm (either side) that makes me completely beside myself in pain. This is new, but has had a slow progressive start due to carrying a raft on my head last summer. I just graduated from physical therapy for the second time with this issue.
I’m itching. I am terribly itching. I am breaking out in hives 1-3 times per day. I’ve had mild to moderate itching problems since my thyroid (Grave’s Disease, one of my 5 autoimmune conditions) went crazy in 2007. Despite killing off my thyroid, my itching never went away. About 2 1/2 months ago, I started breaking out in hives, first on my legs, now all over. I’ve seen my regular doctor and a dermatologist. No answers other than my histamine level is high (I can take a stick and “write” on my arm. Within 1 minute, the letters will be giant welts on my arm… a cool trick, very itchy!) My next stop is an allergist.
Do I think the welts and hives could be related to the diet? Possibly. When starting Paleo, if you have autoimmune conditions, they recommend cutting out tomatoes, eggs, peppers, and some other things initially. Then you can re-introduce them and see what happens. Tomatoes give me hives. Is there something else giving me hives in the diet? Possibly, but I just can’t seem to figure it out. My current objectives are to cut out bananas for 3 weeks (1 week into that now), then coconut (will be pissed if I’m allergic to that), the chocolate (tried that for a week before, but want to do it longer). The dermatologist thought I could be allergic to my thyroid medicine, and that’s a very high possibility, but I can’t live without it, so what do I do then??? Gotta see the allergist.
Solve the itching issue.
Get my son semi-Paleo (he’s 7, and is slow to try new things).
Continue enjoying this new-found level of health I haven’t seen in a long time.
Get to downtown Denver to the Caveman Cafeteria (Paleo food!)
Awesome website: Paleomg.com
Awesome recipes, especially stuffing and apple fritters!
Get a new website going. If you haven’t been to it, we have had a website since 2006: MomsWithRA.org. It was great and we had a lot of moms for a long time, but I’m not in that “new mom” place anymore and am thinking about starting a Paleo/RA/something or other website. I would love some feedback, and thank you so much for the comments. They really do help! I wasn’t very motivated to talk to myself, but I have readers now!!!!
You can also visit me on Facebook under Moms With RA.
Take care, all!