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The "Everything Free" Diet

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After yet another day of gnawing antacid tablets (with a dry mouth they take forever to chew, and sipping water to help leaves you looking like you are foaming at the mouth) I raised my fist over my head and swore that I would try to cut out the things that could be adding to my gastric issues. (I produce too much gastrin)


I am allergic to eggs, so they are out... bananas trigger migraines, they are out... mildly lactose intolerant, so bye bye milk products... high BP, so salt is a four letter word in my house... sensitive stomach so never uses pepper (there for guests to add if they want it)... NASH (fatty liver disease) and cholesterol levels that amaze bears before hibernation as well as not being able to eat it without getting ill, so fat is out...


I could cut out caffeine (no more caffeinated drinks at all), gluten (no more bread or pasta), carbonated drinks (without caffeine they are no fun anyway and the carbonation upsets me anyway), all acidic foods (bye citrus, tomatoes and many other fruits and berries) since they make my stomach hurt, all meat products (my triglycerides were off the chart last check), all carbs (they are nothing but sugar seeking my hips)... let me see... that leaves me... :unsure:


Water, lettuce and a few bean sprouts............................................................................. B)


Well, the foaming at the mouth look is not that bad.



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Hello Penny


Tout this as the new diet fad and you could make a small fortune! Of course the task would be making it appetising, you could do an "emperor's new clothes" type thing and convince people that there's more on the plate than beansprouts, lettuce accompanied by water.


I am just starting to get gastric issues :( and don't much like it so can't imagine what it must be like for you.


By the way I meant to say in my reply to difficult family members how brave it was of you to talk so openly and calmly about possible amputation, amazing.


Take care



Amanda Thorpe

ISN Sclero Forums Senior Support Specialist

ISN Video Presentations Manager

ISN Blogger

(Retired) ISN Sclero Forums Assistant Manager

(Retired) ISN Email Support Specialist

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

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Think they would fall for the Emperor's New Salad Diet? :)


The diet issue is much like the amputation issue. I sit back and think of the pro's and con's about the issue, make a list and compare then figure in quality of life.


When it comes to my foot, no one in their right mind wants to have something like a foot cut off. But when it comes to quality of life and trying to look ahead there really is one answer. Without the amputation I will never be able to walk in the woods again or many of the things I enjoyed doing. With a prosthetic I would be able to move forward instead of always dreaming of my past.


When it comes to the gastro issues, if I cut out every little thing that causes me pain or nausea I would be left with pretty much nothing. So, I try to moderate and keep munching antacids like popcorn.


If I spent all my time fretting over what I have lost or how I am feeling I would miss the good things that are still left in life, so I accept the things I have no control over as inevitable and focus on the things that I can control. I can't stop my stomach from churning out gastrin, but I can make sure that I avoid the things that will definitely turn bad for me quickly and look for new ways to make the things I used to eat in a milder form.


Oh, I still get mad, I still rage at the unfairness, I still cry at times because I just want that all elusive 'normal' that the rest of the world seems to take for granted, but these are the cards I have been dealt and I am going to play my hand for all it is worth.


Huge Hugs,



ps- I am sorry that you are starting to get the gastro issues, try to remember that stress and worrying can make it worse, so my first suggestion would be to laugh at least three times a day and let go of the things you have no control over.

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Hi Penny,


Cutting out foods for health reasons is no fun at all! So I try to look at it as expanding my food horizons instead, into areas I otherwise may not have ever tread.


I cannot have any gluten, casein or soy. Which doesn't sound bad until you translate that into wheat, barley, rye, milk and all dairy products, soy and all byproducts of such ingredients, even in the tiniest amounts. That is equivalent to wiping out nearly all normally processed foods. And I nearly always avoid carbonation and items with corn syrup; just to be feisty and difficult.


However, with half or more of the foods on the planet eliminated, I still have a complete, healthy and enjoyable diet. Eliminating my exposure to food intolerances has given me a new freedom -- (nearly) free from heartburn and irregularities and good riddance to that constant, grinding stomach pain and bloat. I have fewer migraines, less fatigue, and fewer symptoms overall to juggle.


It was a very rough adjustment though. I had to study food lists and ingredient lists for months on end. I had to learn how to overcome Minnesota Nice and special order in restaurants; "making a scene" by requesting any special treatment was terribly hard for me but it is a social skill that I'm glad I learned. I feel more confident from it, but less tolerant of those who perchance feel that they are "superior" to people with food intolerances or diseases that affect food preferences.


I have a whole bunch of new favorite foods now. I absolutely adore beans and rice. Coconut curry and Thai foods, yum! I've explored a lot of new fruits and vegetables, and fallen in love with my crockpot as we find it easier (and safer) to eat at home nearly all the time now. Which is a real money-saver, so I have more money for hobbies and entertainment!


Still, I really miss the good ol' days when I could eat anything, with nary a worry. As they say, there is always a silver lining -- but I ask, who on earth ever wanted any "lining"?!


So my heart sympathetically goes out to you. Let's have ourselves a Virtual Feast, where we can have any food on earth! Yum....

Warm Hugs,


Shelley Ensz

Founder and President

International Scleroderma Network (ISN)

Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099


The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

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Actually, when I first did this post it was meant as a bit of a joking poke at myself for trying to find a way to control the uncontrollable when it comes to the tummy turmoil, that and the frustration that if I cut out everything that upset me I would be left pictures of food and some legume seedlings.


I have learned to use spices in a different way and to enjoy and even savor the flavor of foods in their 'natural' state. I learned to adore a small bowl of plain steamed baby carrots, I never knew that they could be so sweet! I used to be a dedicated salt-o-holic with a glistening layer on everything and thought that 'well seasoned' meant salted. I have since learned that instead it means complimenting the flavor with mild spices and complimentary textures.


I am up for a virtual feast :) I will bring the Prime Rib with horseradish sauce and au jus and some peanut-butter chocolate chip cookies if you bring the coconut sum gum!



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