Alas, I think my doc was right: I have a sensitivity to eggs. At first I doubted him because I’ve consumed at least 2 eggs a day for the past few years with no known side effects. He suggested that eggs may be the reason for my severely itchy ears – a chronic problem that I’ve put up with for literally decades! Reluctantly, I went off eggs for about a week and honestly couldn’t really tell a difference. So, I added them back in one day and that night my ears were on fire! I took them out again, maybe two weeks ago, and have noticed improvement. My ears still itch, but not to the point of me scratching at them in my sleep until they bleed. I guess that’s good, though I REALLY miss eggs! When you can’t have gluten, dairy, corn, or soy, your food choices are noticeably limited; when you add eggs to the list, you’re egg-ceptionally limited (so bad, I know)!
Here’s the thing – my ears still itch. What does that tell me? I have other unknown sensitivities! According to my physician, itchy ears are a classic sign of food sensitivities. What gives? If I make a mental list of things in my daily diet that could potentially be problematic, I suppose butter, nightshades (potatoes, tomatoes) or coconut milk could be to blame, but I’m just not ready to further restrict my already pain-in-the-ass diet.
If I were my own client, I would make myself keep a detailed food journal and would cut out ALL potential inflammatory foods. I would likely take the advice of another client who suggested doing the blood panel for food sensitivities, coughing up $225 to get some real answers. But the truth of the matter is, for me, right now, I’m just not ready to know. I really want to enjoy my summer and not further nit-pick every damn thing I eat. I guess I’m willing to just let it be for now.
It is crystal clear that I have a leaky gut. That just goes with the autoimmune disease territory, and is the reason for my growing list of food sensitivities. And, from all my research, where there’s leaky gut, there’s leaky brain. This would explain my brain fog/fatigue (What did I mean to do when I walked into this room? Terrible word recall or the wrong word coming out of my mouth. Falling asleep sitting up reading a really good book. Poor short-term memory. And so on.)
“All disease begins in the gut.” ~Hippocrates. That dude was so smart! He knew this some 2,000 years ago, and science is proving he was spot on. All the new studies coming out about our microbiomes and how our gut bacteria affects our mental and overall health are helping us connect the dots. And did you know the brain is directly connected to our immune system? This discovery was just made! (http://www.medicine.virginia.edu/administration/office-of-the-dean/school-news/researchers-find-textbook-altering-link-between-brain-immune-system) Science is so freaking awesome!
Back to my gut. I posed this question to an esteemed SIBO specialist (Dr. Allison Siebecker) not too long ago: Let’s say you have a client with Hashimoto’s, heavy metal toxicity, and SIBO – where do you start with treatment? After a long, thoughtful pause, her answer was “Start with healing the gut.” I know this to be true and I have been working towards this for many months now. I’m feeling way better than I did a year ago. And I still have a long way to go.
In the fall or winter, you very well may find me radically healing my gut: sipping nothing but bone broth and pureed carrots for days on end and popping L-Glutamine capsules like candy, then adding back one easy-to-digest ingredient at a time, very slowly, to rebuild my gut and re-boot my immune system. But for now, I intend to enjoy my summer, eating the fresh, local Oregon bounty (sans eggs), getting outdoors with my family, being among friends and other loved ones, and sleeping in as much as possible.