Have you ever woke up in the morning feeling great? Maybe a little tired, but after a stretch you get out of bed and start your day feeling well. You get dressed, grab a quick breakfast item from the freezer, pop it in the microwave, and run out the door. At work your coworkers ask if you want to go to lunch with them and you say “of course, I’m good with where ever you all want to eat.” When you get to the restaurant you look over the menu interested in all most everything on the menu. You make a choice from the many options that make you mouth water.
After lunch you head back to your office energized from your meal and excited to finish the last half of the work day and head home. Maybe even plan to go out to dinner with your special someone?
Does this sound familiar, like it could easily be your life? If so that is wonderful! You truly do not know how luck you are.
For many others including myself the day looks quite different… Your alarm goes off but it doesn’t matter, you were not asleep. You had spent most of the night vomiting, writhing in pain, and soaked in sweat. Maybe even battling your 5th trip to the bathroom because no matter how many over the counter pills you have taken the diarrhea hasn’t stopped and you just hope you can stop shitting yourself long enough to shower and get to work. You can’t call in sick AGAIN. You manage to shower and get dressed and you look in the fridge for breakfast even though you are not sure you can keep it down. Your eyes look over the eggs, milk and…. you sigh not knowing if you can eat any of these breakfast staples. Will they make me sick like yesterday or will I be fine like the many days before that? You grab a banana and heave your body in the car with what little energy you have.
You get to work looking like you are nursing a hangover from a “fun” night. Lunch rolls around and your coworkers walk by smiling as they head out to lunch. They stopped inviting you long ago. Every time you would ask, “Where are we eating? Do you think they will have something that fits with my very limited diet?”
Say you did end up going to lunch with them. You would have to furiously look over the menu online before arriving to the restaurant – hopeful after you realize you can eat one of the restaurants salads. After interrogating the waiter you think to yourself “will the kitchen actually take my allergy or intolerance seriously or will they put croutons on my salad and then removed them when the ticket says no croutons thinking to themselves “no harm send the salad out.” Will the waiter even convey to the kitchen that you need the cooks to change their gloves to prevent cross contamination?” You sink into your chair telling yourself that if you do get sick at least half the day is over and you will be able to go home in a few hours. On the way home you carefully think out the dinner plan and even make a little extra so you can have something the next day you know won’t make you sick… or will it? Do you even know for sure what it is that causes you to feel like you are dying everyday?
Maybe you have figured out how to avoid most foods that cause you to be ill, that is great! Now you have to plan out every day of your life and social interactions that revolve around food. Do you feel overwhelmed? I did.
The latter person is precisely the person I wish to help with this blog. The nutrition information and interventions I hope will be helpful to both the sick and the well, but I know some people are far more desperate and in need of help than others. I know I was. I can’t say nutrition is a cure all for everything, but it is a good place to start. Work with your physician and a dietitian to help you formulate a plan that makes your life less like the second person’s and more like the first person’s. Those people are out there, they wake up most days feeling great, and you can too.