Post # 1
This is going to get Too Much Information really quickly, but I wanted to know if anyone’s experienced anything similar and successfully figured their problems out.
Just an FYI – I’m a vegetarian with extremely vegan tendencies (I do eat yogurt on occasion). For years now I’ve suffered from intermittent diarrhea. Like yesterday and today. And last week, some. And oh my goodness the stomach pain and gassiness. Then it will clear up.
I know I should go to the doctor, but I’m apprehensive of being labelled as something like IBS and sent away when the real problem might be a food sensitivity or intolerance.
The main reason I think it is a food intolerance is that I definitely get sick when I eat tomato-containing foods for days in a row (like 2-3), and they’re now on my do-not-eat list. I’m also concerned about other nightshade vegetables, and even the soy that I eat CONTINUOUSLY (although this doesn’t seem as likely to be the culprit as the symptoms are only intermittent and not constant).
Questions: Has anyone done an elimination diet? And what kind of health practitioner does one go to to get help with intolerances? And what if I go to the doctor and he doesn’t listennnn? (so many bad doctor experiences…)
Thanks in advance for any words of wisdom.
Post # 3
You will want to see a gastroenterologist. I was diagnosed with IBS w/constipation when I was in my teens. About 3.5 years ago, when I was trying to eat healthy (salads for meals, almonds for snacks), I got extremely ill. I ended up in the hospital dangerously malnourished and dehydrated, for eight days. Turns out, I had Crohn’s Disease which basically means I was eating the WORST foods I possibly could for my body!
Although people with Crohn’s have different triggers, everyone has to limit their intake of raw fruits and vegetables as well as nuts. When I got out of the hospital, in order to learn what my body would be able to handle and what it couldn’t I slowly had to introduce stuff into my diet. So my main meals were boiled chicken and plain white rice. I would then try one thing different each day to see how it made me feel. With the combinatio of Remicade infusion treatments every 6 weeks and knowing my triggers, I’ve only been in the hospital twice since I was diagnosed. My triggers seem to be milk (more than 1/2 glass), pizza, tomato sauce (no more than 1x/week), raw veggies (no more than 1 small salad 1x/week), cheese (no more than like a slice on a sandwich at any given meal), and NO NUTS!
Obviously, I am an extreme case with a more rare auto-immune disease, but the GI doc will be able to figure out what is wrong with you (if anything) and help you control it.
Post # 4
I’ve struggled with the same symptoms you have for a few years now and was finally diagnosed as having non-celiac gluten intolerence (with my doctor adding that if the test becomes better I’ll probably have celiac). Worth getting a celiac panel blood test to rule it out. Easy enough if your doc will order it. Problems with gluten can spring up at any time. I started with my family doc and that’s as far as I had to go, but a GI doc would probably be more helpful for you if blood tests come back normal/elimination diet doesn’t work.
Post # 5
As a scientist, ‘nightshade vegetables’ made me wince. What you’re actually refering to is the solanaceae family. The vegetables that your are refering to are probably those in the Solanum genus eg. tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant. Nightshade vegetables just makes everything sound poisonous, also it’s scientific name is Atropa belladonna, so different genus.
Ok, on to the diet problems. I second seeing a gastroenterologist and trying an elimination diet. Have you tried keeping a journal of the food you eat and the symptoms you have? It might help you pinpoint what is making you sick. Also, have you noticed if any of your symptoms are triggered by gluten? Gluten is a common culprit with those kind of symptoms. Personally I’m allergic/intolerant to fish oil which was a pretty easy one to figure out when your family went out for weekly fish frys for most of your childhood .
Post # 6
@everridiculous: I had all sorts of issues a while back. But I did keep a food diary and write down every single ingredient. I looked for patterns myself. Then I eliminated the foods myself. I think you can do this yourself. Then you have some data to show a doctor should you end up going to one.
I never started with just a few foods then added new ones slowly – seems too restrictive!
I have something like lactose intolerance but none of the lactose free products (or Lactaid) work for me. Kefir I thought was OK, but then I got super gassy from it.
So maybe it’s a milk protein? Then again I have have some yogurt in small doses (not like a whole cup at once). So I don’t know what I have. Definitely no cheese, ice cream or milk for me.
Post # 7
@everridiculous: Find a holistic medicine specialist. The doctor for whom I work does COMPLETE food testing. He draws blood and sends it to a lab and they send back a report with EVERY food under the sun and if there are any sensitivites and it even scales HOW sensitive you are.
Post # 8
Im lactose intolerant and my symptoms r identical to yours…the more dairy i eat…like milk or icecream….the more painful it is…like it hurts more than both of my csections. i have to use lactose free milk. i can have one yogurt a day…more and i feel like dying. i can have ch sticks too. since u don’t consume or drink much dairy…your body doesn’t produce the enzyme that breaks down the lactose molecule. what u can do to increase the enzymes in your intestines is gradually increase the amount of yogurt u eat…on a daily basis. yogurt has a very small amount if lactose. if u eat dairy…u have the enzymes to break it down…if u don’t…u lose the amount of enzymes. do u drink coffee. when i do i always have a upset tummy…gas…nausea. i switched to naturally caffinated mint tea.
Post # 9
Thanks all; I started a food and symptom journal right after I made this thread. I guess it’s time to see a doctor! I’m looking at switching doctors, because my current family doctor is highly unapproachable. And stupid. Like, actually. (My dad was in medical school with him and this guy actually is stupid. I honestly don’t know how he managed to become my family doctor with my dad knowing this.)
I’m still scared that I’ll be dismissed! BUT I know I definitely need to look into this further. I don’t want to damage my body any more than it already might be.
@Eckle: I have a biology degree and plant tax courses under my belt; nightshade veggies is a colloquial term, and I thought people would be more familiar with that than an -aceae family name.
Given that gluten is so widespread in our diet, and that I marinade everything in soy sauce and eat wheat breakfast cereals, it’s hard to say whether gluten is a trigger. Especially given that I eat gluten regularly but get symptoms intermittantly, you know? Good food for thought, though.
@lizardloo: This makes me worried about the gluten buisness. I don’t want to hurt my insides! I think I’ll definitely have to get that checked out. I didn’t even know non-celiac gluten intolerance was a thing.
@s2bmrscook: I feel like this would be infinitely useful. I’ll look into it.
@sexymama118: With how rarely I eat lactose-containing things, I was thinking this could be a trigger, and yet I’ve read that usually symptoms arise right after consuming lactose-containing products, which isn’t the case for me.
Post # 10
@everridiculous: It sure can cause multiple problems (even things I didn’t know were related to my problem with gluten). But if a test/elimination diet tells you there’s a problem with gluten at least its easy to fix!
Post # 11
OP, I had the complete panel done for food sensitivities, as well as the skin allergy testing. It’s important to do both because true food allergies won’t show up on the blood sensitivity test. For example, with the “nightshade” family, I am allergic to most of them (tomatoes, potatoes, peppers), but only sensitive to a few (eggplant, bell peppers). With just the blood test, I would have only known about the few items and not cut out the ones I was genuinely allergic to. With the food sensitivities, you can generally start to rotate them back in after months of avoidance, so you’re only cutting them out for a little while. Definitely keep the food journal, but remember that many reactions to foods are delayed, so something you ate 2-3 days ago could be causing you grief today. Allergic reactions usually come on pretty fast. Word of warning, the blood test is expensive and usually not covered by insurance, but the skin allergy testing usually is covered.