As I’ve shared with you before, dairy and my system are in a constant combative state. Milk and soft cheeses have always produced an, um, unattractive result with my digestive tract. For whatever reason, though, hard cheeses, yogurt and fat free dairy didn’t create such a violent reaction; so, I thought I was fine to eat those.
Wrong. (Ever notice how often I say that?)
I haven’t eaten much yogurt lately – not by design, I just haven’t bought it. Well, a couple of weeks ago, I walked to the grocery store at lunch and got a container of it. That afternoon, I noticed that I had kind of a smokers’ cough. (See Rick Harrison in Pawn Stars.) I thought that was a little interesting, but let it go. A few days later, I ate another container and could feel the congestion when I breathed. Hmmm. Once is a fluke. Twice is a coincidence. Would it happen three times? Would it be established as a pattern?
I ate some fat-free, no sugar added yogurt this morning. It was blueberry – my favorite – and very tasty. I coughed and had to clear my throat throughout a 9 AM training meeting. Rats. So, no more dairy for me.
Several years ago, I spent a huge amount of time (and money) with several doctors, including pulmonologists, because of a fourteen day cycle I was on. Every two weeks, I would be unable to breathe. With each cough (more of a bark, really), I felt like my bronchi were sticking together. I felt like I was suffocating; but, I sounded like I was practicing to become the new seal act at Sea World. Breathing was exhausting. Then, after three days, it would clear up. Two weeks later, it would start again. I now wonder how much my diet played into the cycle. Just so you know, I won’t revert to that size or diet for ANY gain in scientific knowledge. That one is just gonna have to remain a mystery.
For my aunt Judy, it’s bread that makes her cough. For my sister, bread makes her knees hurt. For me, dairy is the great saboteur. What might it be for you?
My sister spoke with her orthopedist this week about food and joint inflammation. While he could not confirm that food allergies contributed to pain (saying that the science isn’t there yet), he couldn’t refute it, either. The anecdotal evidence is too strong. His advice? If it’s working for you, keep doing it. If removing wheat from your diet makes you feel better, get your grains some other way. If dairy is a killer, find other sources of protein and calcium. There are other sources for those macro and micro-nutrients. Find them. For the sake of your body, your health and to cure yourself of the crankypants syndrome chronic pain induces – find them.