Friday, November 18, 2011

A turning point.

This morning I went to a doctor’s appointment to discuss the possibility of having adrenal fatigue. It was actually a very productive appointment and despite the possibility of having to shell out some $ to get conclusive results and determine if I have any nutritional deficiencies, I am very excited about moving forward and at least getting a clean bill of health, if nothing else. Details follow…

 

  • The doctor confirmed that I seem to have a mild gluten allergy (though I knew that already). I expressed my surprise at having seemingly suddenly developed this and he explained that the sensitivity may have always been present (since I wasn’t paying attention prior to the last year or so, I can’t recall if bread has always made me feel somewhat bloated), but my body reached its limit earlier this year, hence the heartburn and intestinal troubles associated with eating wheat.
  • He recommended that I talk to a nutritionist (appointment made for morning of December 2nd) to try an exclusionary diet for some time to make sure I don’t have any other food sensitivities. He started listing off some things and I remembered to point out that I am also avoiding soy products (mild allergy there) and corn (gives me intestinal troubles, just like wheat products do). I think I’m already on a good path here, but it will definitely be interesting to hear what she has to say about my food choices and her recommendations.
  • I was given two kits to do at home. One is a urine test that I will mail to a lab (complete with a cold pack!) to see how my intestinal flora is doing and test for any food allergies I might have. Another is to test my cortisol levels over a 24hr period. It’s a saliva test and I believe I do it 4 times throughout a day. I’ll probably do that one over the weekend.
  • I need to go back in at some point after a 12hr fast (easy peasy, I’ll just eat an early dinner and go in the morning!) to get some blood work done. From what he said, they’ll look more closely at things like B12, Zinc, and Iron, to see if I have deficiencies in any vitamins and minerals. Then I can work with the nutritionist to incorporate any of those missing links in my diet. The doctor would like to see me again in ~5 weeks after the results are back and to check in. If the lab opens as early as 8AM, I’ll probably try to get in Monday or Tuesday next week, first thing.

I kept the discussion fairly general, without resorting to just saying I’m “on the caveman diet” or even saying that I avoid grains altogether except for white rice on occasion. I told him all of the supplements I’m taking and he asked why, and how much, though I kept forgetting what I was taking since it’s been so much on and off! He seemed to approve of my choices as I explained the reasons (mental clarity, focus, fewer instances of depression, low VitD in blood tests etc.), but did say I’d have to stop taking all but the fish oil for a couple of days before the urine test. I’ll probably do that one early next week to get it all going before Thanksgiving.

The worst part about this is the possibility of having to pay out of pocket for the tests. At most it would be $199 for the urine test and $120 for the saliva test. In the grand scheme of things, this is an amount I’d be willing to sacrifice from my accounts to know a little bit more about my state of health. Speaking of which, this is now the third doctor that has recommended I get a sleep study done, so I am going to call my insurance soon to inquire about coverage.

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