Thursday, 22 March 2012

Allergies or Intolerant to foods

Those that know me will know that have to be careful what I eat.  Nitrates in processed meats now are a major problem, there are times when I would love to go and have a sub, but because they use processed meats I can no longer eat them.   We know that I can not eat oranges or grapefruit as I can have an asthma attack from just one orange.  Richard buys me those boxes of mini mandarin oranges I can have one or two but no more in one evening.

The large pails of ice-cream that are a staple in the summer, I can no longer have.  Because we never buy the big pails, there are times when I forget and have some ice-cream at church with-in the hour I am having an asthma attack.  I can eat the higher priced brands of ice-cream, that you pay twice as much for and only get a fraction of the amount you would get from a pail of ice-cream.  There is a substance in those pails of ice-cream that isn't in the more expensive brands that gives me an asthma attack, so ice-cream is a treat.  I also can no longer have the soft ice-cream or milk-shakes from fast food places.

The only wheat flour has to be highly processed and bleached and have no goodness left in it, for me to not feel so sick that I cannot function.  Every label has to be read.  You would not believe how many products have added gluten, wheat starch or may contain gluten on the label.  The littlest bit will have me feeling so ill within the hour that it is not worth even trying to have treat.  Enriched white flour we have to really read all the ingredients because in most cases it means, added gluten or wheat starch.

Take for instance tonight;  Richard had purchased some packets of shaved beef already cooked and seasoned in a BBQ sauce.  An hour later I am feeling sick, sweaty, shaky and not being able to walk anywhere, I keep gel gravol handy at all times.  The question was what was in the meat other than beef and seasoning, could the beef have been processed first so contain nitrates?  Could there be some other ingredient that we never considered looking for.   So Richard just went to pulled the box out of the garbage.  It was not nitrates, in one of the sugars, of which there were many, there was molasses powder which contained wheat starch (gluten).  The reason for my feeling awful was a small item used to actually make molasses a powder, wheat starch.  Richard is very careful he reads every ingredient label as my tolerance for such items is getting worse as I get older.  Who would have thought to check the sauce that beef was cooked in.  Sometimes I can have enriched wheat flour but we still check the other ingredients to ensure that other parts of the wheat are not added.  I have the same problem with medication as gluten, wheat starch, are common binding agents.  The gravol gel capsule is slowly kicking in.  The reaction I get is so bad that can't even go upstairs to lie down.

Gravol, an anti nausea medication, the regular orange flavoured ones, I throw up almost instantly, not because of the medication but to do with the binding agents.  They now make a Gel Gravol but it is expensive for just eight, it is also not easy to find, we actually get our drug store to order it in for me and I keep at least six packets on hand.  Not only do I need it when I eat something that my system does not like but I also take one with my migraine medication.

When we moved here to Prince Albert every Sunday within about an hour or so I would feel sick to my stomach and have to take a gel gravol and lie down for a couple of hours.  Richard and I spent weeks trying to figure out what was different, what was I getting at church that would have this reaction on me.  After much trial and error we finally discovered that powdered creamer has the same reaction as nitrates and wheat starch/gluten has on me.  Now we make sure there is creamer in the fridge at the church at all times so I can have a cup of coffee with everyone else. 

I, like everyone else, have my dislikes, I don't enjoy carrots and try not to eat them, the same with celery, I hate the taste cooked or raw I just do not like it.  Do you know how many individuals always put both in stews, chili's, soups, etc.  Of course I pick them out.  Because of that I am told that I am fussy that I don't like very much.  It is no fun not to be able to enjoy a dessert because it has a Graham crumb crust on the bottom or Graham crumbs on the top.  Not to enjoy a ham sandwich because the ham is processed and contains nitrates, to no longer be able to eat bacon, or eat a nice healthy loaf of whole grain bread.

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