What’s a ‘leaky gut’?

I don’t know.

So I did as every Millennial does. I googled it:

Summary Leaky gut, or increased intestinal permeability, occurs when the tight junctions of your intestinal walls loosen. This may allow harmful substances, such as bacteria, toxins, and undigested food particles, to pass into your bloodstream.

Well, crap.

The Gluten experiment was finished on Thursday. For 30 days, I was stay as Gluten Free as possible. And for 28 of those days, I was. Even I was pretty impressed. I gave two concessions – a day that I was on remote, and while I was helping move my oldest. Outside of that, I begrudgingly stayed away from breads, pastas, my favourite ranch dressing and garlic dips; I had cauliflower crust pizzas. I refused gnocchi. I opted out of the wrap from the Pita Pit, and had naked burritos.

It wasn’t as hard as I’d anticipated, but it still sucked. It just did. There’s got to be a balance somewhere, right?

A few things of note – typically, when someone gives up all processed carbs like breads and pastas, wheat and flour, some type of weight loss is noted. Especially if the other foods that stack their diet are around 1500 calories a day. I don’t drink much pop, I certainly don’t eat a ton of fast food. I think I could count five or six “fast food” meals in a month, and those were off the salad menus without dressing. And yet, I still didn’t lose a pound.

In fact, last night, when I came home from the Legion (yes, my dearlings, I have found solace in late night Friday night drinks with the good wonderful folks at the Sydenham Legion and that’s probably where you”ll find me now on the weekends I’m not in Kitchener), I succumbed to the hunger of the day and made a small bowl of gnocchi. Yesterday’s meals – breakfast was a coffee, lunch was a cold-cut sandwich on a kaiser with a small side of broccoli soup, and a donut, half a stale bagel with cream cheese for dinner. I was starved. (Also, yes, I’m no longer Gluten-free, so I was giving this day a real whirl. And likewise, I fell off the no-cheese for Lent bandwagon last Sunday when my kid bought us pizza. So I try to stay off it, but yeah, I failed that miserably). So I enjoyed a small bout of gnocchi with cheese and garlic while I finished the Reunion episode of Love is Blind.

Oh, and look at that. This morning, I’m a miserable mess in the washroom. When I went to bed, I thought I was going to barf. And today, the hives are back. Up my arms, across the back of my hands. Did I mention it was one kaiser, one half a bagel, and one small cup of gnocchi? That’s all it took.

If that’s not a gluten sensitivity then I don’t know what is.

And to make it worse, I stepped up on the scale this morning (after, remember, I was violent in the washroom), and I’d still gained an additional two pounds. 212 this morning, after hovering around 210 all month.

To suggest I’m frustrated is an understatement. I am miserable. Angry. Pissed off. Hungry and overweight and covered in hives.

But, fortunately, I’m not alone in trying to figure out what the hell is wrong with me.

It took nearly everything out of me not to call my family physician and ask her about Gastric Bypass. My BMI has finally spiraled far enough out of control that based on the online metric, I now qualify given my sleep apnea. The medication I’m on to reduce the presence of hives is not working. The thyroid medication, is that working? I’m not convinced. I just know that for a year – A YEAR – I’ve struggled to lose weight through diet and exercise. And nothing’s changing. Why?

Well, that’s what we’re going to find out. I was approached by a certified nutrition in Kingston, Trish Krause. We had our consultation yesterday morning. And she brought up the idea of a “leaky gut”. And she’s committed to helping me carve out a new relationship with food that could hopefully see the weight off.

(Remember again – I like me. I like my body, my style, the way I dress. I have a supportive partner. I feel beautiful, and I’m confident in my skin. But I have severe sleep apnea, and if I don’t lose the weight, I will be forced to wear a mask every night for the rest of my life. I want to get my weight under control.)

In the initial consultation, Trish addressed many points – from my allergies, to my asthma. To not being breastfed. To my sleeping patterns, and my stress. To my on-the-go lifestyle. And my food crutches, like coffee. And she’s hellbent and determined to help me figure this shit out. Because she knows I’m ready to throw in the towel.

On Monday, I start at the Y for my Care to Swim challenge. Five days a week in the pool at the Y, and working with Trish on my diet. If no change in my body or weight happens in the next three months, well.

Let’s just focus on not drowning. Literally or otherwise.

— c ☆

 

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