Tuesday, February 19, 2013

My Tummy Pain Mystery Solved!


This is me and Scooby after gall bladder surgery. 


Some background facts on my mystery:

·        * I had gall bladder surgery three years ago.

·         *The next year I had some abdomen pain, had a colonoscopy and discovered I had a minor
case of diverticulosis. (Diverticu-LITIS is when it is infected)

·         *Last year I found myself with unbelieveable abdomen pain and went to the hospital. The CT scan showed what they thought was internal bleeding. Spent three days in the ICU for possible surgery. They discovered that my small intestine had become so infected that it was leaking edema from the infection.

·         *This past year I have had several, several bouts with stomach pain. My doctor who was near retirement continued to tell me (as they had told me in the hospital) that it had nothing to do with food but was an intestinal infection rearing its head again. He did order tests and I discovered I did not have Celiac or Chrohn’s disease.  

In December my doctor retired and in order to get my regular medications, I was forced to make an appointment with a new doctor. She is a P.A. and is 12 years old. Okay, maybe she is older but she looks young. Her name is Kelsey. I know, right? 12.

Anyway, when I went into see Kelsey I just happened to be having a day of intense stomach pain. I told Kelsey it was probably the diverticulosis. Upon examining me and reading my records, Kelsey said it couldn’t be diverticulosis, since that was in my left lower abdomen and my pain was always in the top of my abdomen just above my belly button.

Okay, diverticulosis out.

Next I explained about the time in the ICU with an infection. She explained that it could possibly be a reoccurring infection, in which a trip to a gasteroentologist was the suitable next step, but had I considered food allergies?

If I had a nickel for every time someone had told me I was probably allergic to gluten, I’d be a millionaire. I told her I really didn’t think it was gluten, because bread made me feel better. I had taken a week here and there throughout the year and eliminated certain foods and I couldn’t find an answer.

Kelsey suggested I get a food allergy test, done through a blood test through US Bio Tech. My insurance wouldn’t cover it, but it might be worth the price to find out answers or at least eliminate food as the culprit.

I had the blood test and waited.

Two weeks ago, I went in to see Kelsey and discuss the results. I found the answer to my mysterious belly pain of the last year.

I am allergic, highly, to bananas, pineapples, milk, mozzarella cheese, whey, yogurt and eggs. I have some minor allergies to other things including broccoli and carrots. Kelsey asked me to try to eliminate these foods for three weeks and take note of any changes. I explained that right then I didn’t have stomach pain, but she said food allergies often affect bowel movements, skin and energy, also.

My energy has waned a great deal this last year and since I have started exercising regularly I still don’t have a lot of extra energy. It seems everything I have is going into getting to the gym. I have noticed that I get these red splotches on my neck consistently. I used to get them only when really nervous but I have noticed them more and more at random times. And my bowel movements? I don’t want to get personal, but Dr. Oz would not be pleased.

So I’ve eliminated these foods for a week and a half. I miss milk DEARLY. I have almond milk in my coffee. Not bad and I’m getting used to it.

And I started thinking about my life these past couple years and something occurred to me. The only consistent pattern in my life has been the classic yoyo of weight loss and weight gain. I have tried to lose weight many times and often it has ended in a bad patch of tummy pain. To comfort myself I’ve started eating badly, ergo, gaining weight but ending the tummy pain.

Hmm…

Then it occurred to me that the foods I usually incorporate in my usual weight loss regime include bananas, pineapples, string cheese, yogurt and boiled eggs with a lot of broccoli and carrots.

Hmm…

In fact, I can’t swear to it, but I bet the day that I ended up in the ER I started the day with a whey protein shake with bananas, pineapple and yogurt in it. I probably had a snack of string cheese or a boiled egg. And for sure I incorporated carrots and maybe some broccoli into my diet.

I asked Kelsey about this and she said if I had one of the foods on my allergy list, it would affect me, but if I combined several of them on one day, it would definitely result in pain.

AHA!!!!

It is too early for certain results but I know I have more energy after only 1 ½ weeks. I don’t see the red thing on my neck as much and my bowel movements? Well, Dr. Oz would do a Woo Hoo! (Actually I don’t know if he woo-hoos or not.)

I have hope now that my weight loss will continue and be fortified through my mystery solving process. I can still eat wonderful food and exclude the foods on my allergy list. Again, it’s early in this process but hope is a good thing. A joy-inducing emotion!

Many of you have prayed for me, given me wise counsel and just felt for me during the last couple of years. THANK YOU! And I hope that in sharing my mystery solved moment I will help someone else who is in the midst of a tummy pain mystery. 

29 comments:

Helen said...

Very eye opening!

Diane Marie Shaw said...

Wow Robbie, What a relieve this has to be. So glad your doctor retired. I pray that energy returns to you and the weight keeps coming off.
Enjoy all the wonderful foods you can eat and don't miss those that can give you pain. Ohh, we could use those words concerning relationships, enjoy the wonderful ones and leave off the ones who give you pain.

Aimee Haywood said...

This makes me want to go and get a food allergy test! I'm so glad you've found an answer to your pain. That can be so frustrating to not know! Yay God!

Deb Wilden said...

Hi Robbie
This is great news! So glad !!!! I feel much better when I avoid soy and oranges! so join my club look at ingredients all the time! Yay God! Deb wilden

Deb Wilden said...

So glad hooray! that is great news now you can join the club of being careful what you eat! Blessings
Deb Wilden

Deb Wilden said...

Hooray so glad God is good! Now you just have to read labels like I do it is worth it!
Love Deb

Robbie Iobst said...

Helen, I know, right? I am glad it wasn't gluten. I LOVE BREAD! :)

Robbie Iobst said...

Diane, what a wonderful analogy. I bet if we ask God, He would give us a relationship allergies test. :) Food for thought. Pun intended! :)

Robbie Iobst said...

Aimee, THANK YOU! Yay God is SO right on! :)

Denise Miller Holmes said...

Oh my cow! So exciting you've found the answer. I'm also glad about your new bowel movements. :D

Love you,
Denise

Robbie Iobst said...

Deb, I have to start looking at ingredients but right now, for three weeks I am just eliminating the basics. Whew. This is hard enough. :)

Bonnie Doran said...

I'm so happy you found some relief from your symptoms. I had a different problem a couple of years ago, and learning what it was (and wasn't) took a load off my mind.

Cheryl Barker said...

So glad you seem to be on the right track now!

E Lucki said...

That's great Robbie! What kind of an allergy test did you have? I am thinking both myself & my mom should get them done. How did you go about it?

Terri said...

Yeah! I love coconut milk and make pudding with tapioca flour. I am so glad for you, and I know you can find other things to meet your nutritional needs that you will fall in love with!

Robbie Iobst said...

Bonnie, Thank you! I do feel a weight has been lifted. And hopefully more weight will be lifted in the future. :) Pun.

Robbie Iobst said...

Thanks, Cheryl! It's wonderful to feel good about the path I am on!

Robbie Iobst said...

Erin, I took the food allergy test put out by US Bio Tech. I did it through my doctor's office because they had the kit and they have a blood taker at their office. If you google US Bio Tech Food Allergy test you can read about. It cost me $189.

Robbie Iobst said...

Thank you for the encouragement Terri! I am going to get really familiar with coconut milk and recipes with it! :) I might email you about it when I get there. :)

Aleks said...

wow! Thats crazy to go all your life without knowing you are allergic to the things you eat everyday. I have people tell me my migraines might be caused by gluten.... but I am too much of a weenie to stop eating bread and pasta.

Amanda said...

So glad you found an answer! What a long, painful, and frustrating journey! (Saying hi from the CL group!)

Robbie Iobst said...

Aleks, I have a friend whose migraines were caused by food allergies. It's always a risk getting tested cause after you have to deal with it. :)

Robbie Iobst said...

Amanda, thank you!! And thank God for answers.

Danica/Dream said...

Robbie, that is SUCH great news!! I am joy dancing for you!

Joanna said...

Robbie,
Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us. My husband has had similar issues (and procedures) for a good two years. Now we will have a food allergy test done.

I'm so glad you found an answer to your tummy troubles. I know how frustrating it can be. Thanks again!

Many Blessings,
Jo

Robbie Iobst said...

Danica, Thank you girl! I'm doing quite a boogie myself. :)

Robbie Iobst said...

JO!! I miss you, friend. Please tell Brian I am so sorry and I FEEL and have felt his pain. Hope you guys get answers yourself! :)

tonya said...

Robbie, I am so glad you found an answer! That is awesome!

Robbie Iobst said...

Thank you Tonya!! I love reading your NYC posts and tell your hubby I think he rocks! :)