Autoimmune Thyroid Disease

An Unfortunate and Lengthy Adventure in Misdiagnosis

Giving up plants for Lent?

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Foods eaten: Eggs, Butter, Pancake, Jersey cow milk, Pear, Double cream, White bread roll, Pork belly, Jacket potato, Golden syrup.
Kcals: 2,681, Protein: 60g, Fat: 219g, Carbs: 113g.

So. I have to start eating less. I’ve been experiencing this strange, disparate craving that is different from carb craving. When I crave carbs, I can usually picture the kinds of foods that I want. This time I’m not so sure. Carbs aren’t turning me on. I seem to be craving vegetables or salads! So I have been stuffing my face with everything except vegetables to try to relieve this feeling. I guess salicylates are addictive.

I ate a huge amount of pancake and golden syrup last night, with it being Shrove Tuesday. And today, no low blood sugar! Is this what other people feel like all the time? Because of this new-found liberation, I have been like a kid in a candy store pigging out on carbs because I can, even though I know they are bad for you for a whole variety reasons. I haven’t gained weight, but I’ve certainly gained width around the stomach. I feel quite bloated and constipated. I’m fairly certain this is not due to food chemicals, but due wheat, which has always done this to me. So I guess after today no more wheat. Starting Lent a day late? No, I’ve already given up plants for Lent!

It’s really important that while I do the failsafe program I am not exposed to non-food sources of salicylates and benzoates from cosmetics and chemical products. They can be breathed in through the air and absorbed through the skin. Finding cosmetics is a real problem. There are literally no shampoo products that don’t contain plant extracts, salicylates, or benzoates. Even the so-called sensitive or pure products are full of them (even, disappointingly, Simple only do perfumed shampoo. Not so Simple.) I spent ages looking at labels in Boots. The health shop is even worse. I haven’t yet found an online source outside of the US. I have resigned myself for the time to using small amounts of Johnson’s baby shampoo washed off very quickly, because I know from long experience it is one of the things that my ear inflammation reacts to least. Simple soap seems to be alright. I’m using a pure alum rock crystal deodorant. I hate using aluminium based deodorant though. The health shop alternatives based on zinc or herbs are full of salicylates. For toothpaste I am using pure bicarb of soda. As well as still having problems with cosmetics, I am still eating pork, another factor. Must. Stop.

My teeth feel unbelievably smooth and clean. Even after pigging out on pancakes and golden syrup last night they didn’t accumulate any plaque. Is this the bicarb of soda? Unlikely, as they still feel clean when it’s time to brush them. Is it all the calcium in the milk? Or is it the Failsafe Program? Something else: I was going through a very bad bout with the chronic pain/inflammation in my right ear and I couldn’t figure out the triggers. When I started the diet the inflammation subsided considerably and is back to its normal level. The gland under my ear which is chronically swollen went to almost nothing. It has since got bigger again, but I seem to be coping with the main environmental triggers (cold weather and showers) much better.

Working at the office is a problem with regard to inhaled salicylates. Talk about sick building syndrome. I have a choice of three rooms: one is above a health shop and I’ve tried to avoid sitting in there for a long time because I had previously noticed worsened hypoglycaemia. I get really hungry, irritable, and a foggy, buzzing head. The smell of herbal teas seeps up through the floor and permeates the room. I was sure when I felt ill before it was something to do with the smell of the herbal teas in there. I know why I’ve been having this reaction now: herbal teas are very high in salicylates. The next room I could work in is above a betting shop and stinks of tobacco. I generally feel better in this room (appetite not as bad, less irritable), but I get a terrible brain-fog in the afternoon. Tobacco is high in salicylates, but the nicotine has a stimulating effect which is probably why I don’t get low blood sugar as much but still get the brain fog. The third room is the server room and smells strongly of chemicals. It’s also freezing cold in there because of the air conditioning to keep the servers cool. Generally, I am completely incapable of stringing together one line of code in this room. The alternative is a small satellite office that still smells a bit of new carpet. I have been okay before in this office, so that’s where I’m going to try to work from now on. Unfortunately this morning a girl came and sat at the desk next to me and sprayed furniture polish everywhere! The best laid plans often go awry: I spent the next fifteen minutes surreptitiously trying to cover my mouth and breathe through my cardigan sleeve because the smell was horrible. My eyes and sinuses are bothering me now. Aaargh! People just don’t have a clue!

I’ve browsed PubMed, some salicylate intolerance literature, and the internet in general and I’ve discovered that:

  • Salicylates can cause high insulin levels and as a consequence reactive hypoglycaemia (yes!)
  • Salicylates are associated with lowered thyroid function (yes!)
  • Salicylate intolerance can be triggered by an infection (yes!)
  • Salicylate intolerance is frequently associated with chronic ear infections and other problems (yes!)
  • Salicylates seem to have a variety of interesting connections to fibromyalgia. Like ALL the symptoms are THE SAME (yes!)

Is it possible that fibromyalgia is actually a food chemical sensitivity syndrome? My parents, who both still suffer considerable fibromyalgia pain and fatigue, are literally hooked on Ibuprofen to relieve pain. I’ve been worried about this for a while as long term use is associated with very high rates of heart attack and stroke. Ibuprofen is salicylate. Are they perpetuating their own symptoms? I gave up use of paracetamol a few years ago when I realised I was “addicted” – paracetamol causes rebound headaches a day or so after you take it, so I was in a constant state of taking paracetamol for paracetamol triggered headaches. Some painkiller! I guess I’ve realised now that I was also “addicted” to aspirin in the same way. I felt okay on the day I took it, but then ended up in a cycle of taking it for aches and pains caused by it, particularly back-ache.

Oh, I forgot: today I have no eczema!


Written by alienrobotgirl

1 March, 2006 at 11:00 am

Posted in Failsafe Diary

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