Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Detox season is over for now

Well, just in case you are wondering, that whole detox is over for me.  What was supposed to be a 3-week thing ended up finishing up just past 2 weeks.

Last year it was a really great program for me to do.  But I had more energy to put into it, I was well.  This year, I put less into it, I fudged on a few things, and I didn't get nearly as much out of it.  It was a good reminder that if you're going to do a program like this, you've gotta jump in with both feet if you want to really get the benefits from it.  From the beginning this year, I knew I didn't have it in me.

BUT... I still cut out all the sugar.  That was much easier this year but just as helpful for me.  While I still had oats for breakfast, it was my only source of gluten.  And man, when I had my first big bread pig out, I could feel it.  Slightly congested head.  Eyes felt puffy.

What is it with gluten anyway?  I've been trying to learn more about that whole thing this year.  I was reading this article by Joe Pizzorno earlier.  It made me think about it differently.  Seems like a very large portion of people (over 50%) are affected at least a little negatively by eating gluten.  It causes just a little bit of temporary leakiness in our gut in the mildest of cases.  But that can be much worse in some people.  I'm watching that and notice when I have gluten-free days and meals, I feel better (and my son feels better too, but I haven't let on to him).  Steve notices the same thing.  I'm starting to wonder if some day soon, our insurance will start paying for some basic testing for both celiac disease AND non-celiac gluten intolerance, only because it can be at the root of some really debilitating (and expensive) illnesses.  I think of the people I know who have suffered from some really scary health troubles, only to get a diagnosis of celiac disease.  All I can think of is how much pain and suffering (and money) could have been saved if they'd been tested when they were young.  So far, I think I'm just going to keep preparing meals that have less gluten.  Save the PB&J for last-minute adventures.

Also, so many people responded to our announcement of our medically-supervised detox.  They really wanted to find a way to do it, but the price tag was too high.  The supplements are SOOO expensive.  We can only afford to do a very short-cut version of it, or I wouldn't make anything on this class.  I've been saying this for some time, but I want to put together an alternate detox class or just a nutrition boot camp where we meet weekly for a month to get nutrition classes, meal plan suggestions and really make an effort in a group.  Get rid of the cost of the supplements and do it with food.  There is a place for both of these approaches, but this would be a good idea, I think.  Either this fall after the canning is finished up, or next spring!


  1. David Perlmutter shares some fascinating discoveries in his book called "Grain Brain" regarding the effects of consuming and abstaining from gluten. Your blog entries have have beautiful and honest. Your thoughts still inspire me to make better food choices all the time. Thank you for being candid- and funny!

  2. YES! Perlmutter is very eloquent in his discussions of this, you're right. Thank you for your kind words.

  3. I still have loads of questions about the gluten intolerance thing. I don't know if it is my love for wheat, or just biases I've picked up along the way, but I am really hesitant to place the blame on gluten. I think there is a lot more to the story. I could be wrong, and I may just be stubborn, but I am looking elsewhere before I blame gluten.

    For example, I've seen reports that bt corn (genetically modified to produce something that destroys the gut of insects that consume the corn) is linked with a leaky gut. Then, with the leaky gut, gluten becomes a problem. Get rid of the GM corn and the gluten is no longer an issue. I like that in theory (because I like wheat and I don't like GMO), but I suspect it isn't that simple.

    Dairy also contains protease inhibitors that could provide a means for gluten to be more damaging than it would be otherwise. And I don't like dairy, but I do like wheat, so this works for me...

    I suspect that gut flora also plays a major role. If you have the right gut flora, you can tolerate the gluten, but if you don't have the right gut flora, it's a different story. I'd even suspect that bt corn and dairy interact with gut flora changing how it influences the person as well.

    It's complicated, but I'm just going to be grateful that gluten doesn't seem to affect me adversely, so I'm going to keep eating it... in very large quantities.