Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Autoimmune Struggles and the 21 Day Sugar Detox

I have talked about my health journey HERE and I feel it is time again to be honest with you about some of the struggles I have encountered recently and my ongoing journey. My hope and prayer is that my struggles and weaknesses will be an encouragement to others, and that you, in turn, will help hold me accountable.

I have known for many years that I am gluten and dairy intolerant, so it honestly has never been a problem to eat gluten free because when more than one doctor says something to the effect of, "Suzanne, you can't eat gluten or dairy. It could bring on Crohn's (I have Crohn's antibodies in my blood) and will continue to cause intestinal distress leading to numerous lifelong problems.", you are pretty motivated. When an authority figure says something like that, I listen and follow. It's how I'm wired. Besides, there are so many gluten free things out there now, and I started, over time, to feel like a normal person again. 

However, after being gluten free and dairy free for awhile, symptoms I thought long gone started to return. So I went to see Dr. Matthews in Dallas, and she did another round of testing to discover some additional things. First, I am allergic to corn. Ok, if she says that, then I will abide by those rules. She also said that it would probably best if I stayed off grain and followed a Paleo diet. So I did pretty well for a while but then I started to slip a little. I justified it by saying to myself, well, Dr. Matthews just highly recommended that I be grain free so a little rice each week or a gluten free cookie or cracker isn't going to hurt me. (Gluten free items while being gluten free {wheat, barley, rye}are not grain free, so they are made with rice flour, corn starch, etc.) I should also add that going all the way back to Dr. Mullin in 2008/2009, I was instructed to keep my sugar content low due to my Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO), and I was pretty good for a while, but again, even after being Paleo, I went a little crazy with the sugar. 

Over the past six month of successes and failures in my dietary journey, I have discovered the following things about my intestinal track and my recurrence of SIBO.

I cannot tolerate any grains. Rice, while maybe not showing up as an actual intolerance or allergy, over time, wrecks just as much havoc in my intestinal track as gluten and corn. 

Sugar, oh sugar, how we love you (and are addicted to you). Sugar is not my friend, well, what I should say is that it is actually best friends with my SIBO. The more sugar I eat, the more I feed the bacteria and the more issues I have and I spiral out of control.

Enter, the 21 Day Sugar Detox. I am so glad to have found this as it brings a support group and lots of information and recipes. Back in 2008/2009, Dr. Mullin and I devised our own version of this to eradicate my SIBO and it worked, but I was on my own, a lone wolf in a sugarless world. Now, there is a huge support group.

All this being said, I started the detox again on Monday, August 5, and I already feel better!! It's as simple as that. I need to be diligent in following my diet and remembering how much better I feel when I stay the course. This is not always easy as we are surrounded by a plethora of food my body rebels again. Your prayers, as always, are appreciated! 

The good news is there are lots of GREAT Paleo recipes out there from numerous AMAZING sources! You will find a lengthy list of those I follow and other resources at the end of my post HERE. If I am forgetting some or you know of one I don't, please let me know!!

Here's to our good health!


  1. Suzanne, tomorrow, Wednesday, August 7th, I'm going to be going sugar free with you. Let's stand together in this way. I'll be praying for you, for healing for you body and for strength in this journey. Your strength has always amazed me. love, Melissa

  2. Awesome, Melissa!! Keep me posted on how you are doing! Thanks so much for your support! Love you and miss you tons!

  3. I almost forgot and ate a blueberry. :) It's been good but not easy! What is the word on wine? not allowed? and there was 1 gram of sugar in my half and half so I was unsure about that as well.

  4. Hey!! I know what you mean! Sadly, no wine. Too much sugar. :( Instead of half and half, maybe try heating up unsweetened vanilla coconut milk and adding it to your coffee.




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