I’ve been obsessed with diet this week. My digestive issues continue. Now I’ve developed chronic heartburn instead of the nausea. Some supplements from the naturopath helped, but I still had it. My diet was already quite good, IMO, and I’d cut out a lot of ‘sins’ because of the issues. I eat veggies, fruit, no fast food, nothing deep fried, cut out coffee, tea, alcohol, chocolate, most sugar, dairy….It seemed completely unfair to me that despite all this, I got heartburn from most meals.
I’ve found the standard medical type advice pretty much useless. Part of it I’d already been doing, other parts didn’t help one bit. But finally, I found a series of articles on heartburn written by Chris Kresser that were actually well written and seemed intelligent. He says heartburn is actually caused by too little stomach acid, not too much. He says that some people (or everyone, i forget) cannot digest grains or legumes very well. This causes gas to build up, which is a cause of the heartburn.
He advocates the Paleo diet – lots of meat, no grains or dairy. Plus a supplement that actually contains stomach acid, and does not reduce it.
I’m ready to try anything, so for the last few days, meat and no grains, lots of vegetables, and the acid supplement. I am used to eating grains and legumes, so I’m not thrilled with this idea. However, the diet seems to be helping. Not sure if it’s the supplement or the diet, since I started both pretty much together.
I really hope I can cure this with diet. If I go to the doctor with this, she’ll put me on acid reducing drugs, which people stay on for life. The article points out that the drug companies have no interest in curing people – their motive is to make a profit. By targeting the symptoms, acid in the esophagus, they provide symptom relief but do not touch the cause – a perfect scenario for them, as they now have customers for life.
Sometimes I wonder how the world of medications would look if pharmaceuticals were not run for profit. It’s such a conflict of interest for them, the pursuit of mega profits vs. people getting better.
Anyhow. End result, I’m feeling quite a bit better.
I’m a little uncomfortable with the idea of this diet though. It seems so Western and privileged. It’s not a sustainable way to eat at all. And they advocate natural meat as well, which is heavy on the pocketbook. But if it’s meat, I want it naturally raised, for the animal’s sake. I can afford this. However, a lot of people couldn’t. And we couldn’t feed the whole world on a meat heavy diet without grains. So I’m uncomfortable ethically.
But I need to feel better, so I will continue with it for a while. Maybe if my gut heals up, I can inch in some grains again, who knows.
There’s a lot of information to read, and a lot of questions come up. For instance – what can I have for breakfast besides eggs? There is apparently a recipe for a kind of nut porridge, though it too contains eggs.
My city has been a steambath for the last week or so, with one episode of torrential rains and flooding. I was without power for a day or so. It was kind of calming really. No electronic input. I’d just started on the Paleo kick though, and still had some bread in the fridge, and there was nothing else much I could eat without cooking besides a sandwich. So Paleo went by the wayside for this emergency.
I’ve been reading True Refuge by Tara Brach. I really enjoy her approach to Buddhism. When I started meditating, it seemed like a torturous procedure which I had to endure as long as I could stand it, which was not very long. Brach’s take on it is to emphasize compassion for yourself. Holding yourself in compassion. Exercises where you breathe and visualize / feel yourself loved.
My take is that you are trying to hold a space for all of you, and hold all of you in compassion. This is not what I naturally tend to do with parts of myself. With parts I don’t approve of, like the dark voice, I tend to try to squash them down. Or that part takes over, which is dangerous and painful. What I want to do is hold space for those parts to be there, but not be all of me – I want to remember that I am much bigger than this particular part.
I found Brach’s book Radical Acceptance helpful also. Just I forget everything, mostly, once the book is back at the library. Maybe they’d be worth buying.
That’s about it. Today I went for a walk in the park, and read my kindle under a large tree. I am officially working, but there remains little to do. I’ve informed my client I am up for any projects she may have, but she didn’t respond directly. We will meet on Monday. She is retiring at the end of the month, so likely simply wants to tie up loose ends.
I’ve decided to keep active at home, not hover over my laptop in case there’s an email for me. I feel better when I keep going out, doing errands, getting some things done. At last I’ve planted one of my planters – it’s looking rather pretty, in pink and white. I have the other one still to plant. And I’ve bought a silk filled pillow. I seem to be allergic to polyester and down, so hopefully this one will be OK. It’s about the fourth pillow I’ve bought in the last year. It cost a lot, so it better work!
I don’t feel much better about the last group, but no longer think about it obsessively. If I do think about it, I’m right back in the pain of Ron not responding and not supporting me. He doesn’t see it like this. Maybe I could get a clearer idea of how he sees it now I’m not longer as upset. I kind of think I have some right on my side. Very true I was triggered though. Sometimes Ron is less helpful than others, but as that was the last group session, there was no time to experience him as helpful again.
I feel if he somehow could even see how I could have perceived things as I did, it would help. But he doesn’t. I think now the thing that hurts most is how he was so concerned about M’s feelings of having been hurt by me, and that she should have space to express them all, but didn’t express any interest in how I was feeling. The group already expressed all kinds of sympathy for M. I obviously had feelings too – I’d stalked out of the group the previous session. Anyhow. I think this all stands in stark relief because it was the last session, and nothing could be done.
Ron goes on vacation next week. Hopefully all will be well. If I have another decent week like this week, it’ll be no problem.
I kind of miss contacting Ron by email. I like that feeling of connection I get from writing to him. However, sometimes it’s just good to put everything away for a while and focus on calmness and re-grouping. I’m worn out by the intensity of the last few weeks, and it’s good to rest and focus on daily life.