The World’s Worst Tattoo & My Last Supper
Yesterday was quite the day.
I had an appointment with an allergist at 12:15pm so I decided to work from home for the day. Easier to bring my work laptop home than to go into the office for an hour or so, leave for the doctor’s appointment, and then, depending on how long the appointment lasted, go back for another hour and a half.
The doctor’s office is located about 4.5 km away so I decided to walk there and back.
In the 28C heat.
Wearing jeans and a t-shirt.
I was a hot, sweaty mess within 15 minutes of my walk. When I arrived at the doctor’s (about an hour later), my armpit sweat stains were so massive I almost took a picture then realized that no one needs to see that again.
After cooling down in the waiting room and guzzling back a ton of water, I was called into one of the exam rooms where the nurse proceeded to explain – and then give me – the skin prick test for allergies. My new doctor immediately suggested food allergy testing when I explained my symptoms. I’ve never been tested for allergies before and neither of the two doctors I had previously seen with these symptoms suggested a food allergy test. Actually, neither of them suggested ANY tests and diagnosed me with Irritable Bowel Syndrome. They both suck.
So the allergy test.
To keep track of the skin pricks, the nurse put the numbers 1 – 20 on my arm. I immediately thought that this would make the world’s worst tattoo. Would anyone actually get this inked on their arm?
I was tested for 18 major allergens and the other two skin pricks were control tests: one was to see if I was negative for any allergies (20), and the other was to see if I was allergic to anything at all (19). You can’t really see it in the above picture, but #19 got red and swollen pretty quick.
Look at that nice little tray filled with vials and sharp instruments. I took a picture of it so I could match up the numbers on my arm with the allergen.
After ten minutes the nurse came back and was able to identify which allergens I had positive reactions to.
Out of the 18, I reacted to 11 of them:
- egg whites
Things I’m not allergic to are:
- egg yolks
I wasn’t shocked by the carrots, soybeans, and wheat since I’ve noticed for a long time now that I react poorly to them. I’m usually okay with carrots if they are cooked but if they are raw? My stomach no likey. I was shocked by pretty much everything else and I think my eyes started to well up with tears when the nurse broke the news about the peanuts and the chocolate.
I met with the doctor shortly thereafter and he was extremely knowledgeable and supportive. Dr. Katz is very passionate about diagnosing allergens and treating patients properly, having focused his practice in this area for about 15-20 years now (I think). He was able to provide me with a lot of information and guidance for the next steps. I have to go on an elimination diet (yet another one!) for three weeks and for the next week I will keep a food diary (which I already do) and note down any symptoms I experience to take back to him to see if there are other foods I should eliminate, like apples. He will continue to work with me until I have things all sorted out.
Other foods I have to eliminate because they are in the same family as the allergens are: mushrooms (yeast), red pepper, cayenne, green pepper, chili, and eggplant (potatoes/tomatoes), parsley, parsnip, celery, anise, dill, coriander, fennel, caraway (carrots) and Coke and Pepsi (chocolate). LIFE IS GOING TO BE AWESOME. Oh, but I can eat sweet potatoes. Yay!
He also reassured me that I may be able to eat some of the foods I tested positive for but in small doses or just not in combination with certain foods. For example, I already know that popcorn bothers me (feels like my insides are being shredded apart), but cornstarch in a baked good may not bother me. It is going to be trial and error to see what has an impact on me and to what extent.
I decided to postpone starting the elimination diet until today so I could get in some final foods that I may never be able to eat again without knowlingly making myself sick.
When I got home (after walking the 4.5k back – I have no reason for not taking the damn bus), I immediately made an egg and bacon sandwich with ketchup on the side. There is yeast in the gluten-free bread along with eggs and potentially some cornstarch so in this meal, I knocked off at least 4 allergens, 5 if there was cornstarch.
Next up was zucchini sticks! I met up with my friend Pam at Colonnade Pizza for dinner. I’ve never been there and heard rave reviews about their pizza so I decided that would be the destination of choice for what I’m terming my Last Supper. I fully realize that in using that term I am aligning myself either with Jesus and inmates on death row. Except I knew that my chances of dying that night or the next day were pretty dang darn slim.
Ham and pineapple pizza! This was my fave type growing up and I think it remains my fave to this day. It was sooooo good.
Pam and I also ordered a combination pizza: mushrooms, pepperoni, and green peppers.
In this meal I got more yeast, wheat, green peppers, mushrooms, pork, possibly corn (could be in the dough), and maybe eggs (if in the dough).
My stomach was hating on me. I felt so nauseated and crampy.
But the fun didn’t end there! Oh no siree!
I hit up the grocery store and got dessert:
Chocolate Fudge Brownie ice cream.
Oh. Em. Gee. It was awesome. And further added to the pain and discomfort.
So that, my friends, was my version of the Last Supper. The next few weeks are going to be interesting and I’ll try to keep y’all updated on what is working and what isn’t. I’m really hoping that I’ll be feeling 100% again once I get these toxic foods out of my system.
Have a great day!