08 August 2016

After All This Time (And Why I'm Back)

Yes, I know it's been a long time! But here I am. Before I go into the reasons I've resurrected this blog, let me catch you up quickly.

I still have my lap band. And I still weigh about 300 pounds, give or take about five pounds.

We could never get my fill right. Either it was so loose, I could eat almost anything or it was so tight, I couldn't eat anything. Back and forth we went, until I just got tired of the hassle. Right now, my fill is probably a bit too tight, as I throw up more meals than I don't. Even ice cream and soup.

And it's not just the tight fill that makes me throw up, it's the mucus production (ewww!) that I experience some times. And the air bubbles. Can't forget the sometimes massive air bubbles.

What I've never understood is how I can throw up at least half of what I eat and still weight what I do!

Of course, I'm eating around the band. In my defense, I tend to eat what stays down. Because of the mucus production so many foods cause me, I tend to eat a lot of dry, crunchy foods (translation: crackers, chips, and cookies).

Because of my frustrating fill situation, I think I'm going to have all the fill removed and go from there. The reason I haven't already done that is that I'm afraid of how much weight I might gain without the band. I was gaining weight pretty rapidly before I started the preparations to have my lap band, and I'm kind of afraid to go back there.

But I'm also tired of being afraid to eat, because I don't know what will stay down -- Because it changes for me from day-to-day. What worked last week may not work this week. Or ever again. I hate that the first thing I have to do when I go into a public place is scope out the restroom. And I'm tired of paying good money for food -- whether in a restaurant or at the grocery store -- that just ends up in the toilet.

I know I'd still have some restriction, even with no fill, but hopefully it will be manageable. I've got to fight with my insurance company before I do this, because it's not covered -- and frankly, I don't want to spend a couple hundred dollars to have my fill removed. But if that's what it takes, I'll do it!

But I have to be totally honest, too: I haven't learned any new eating habits (or coping mechanisms), so I still have the ones that got me to this size. That means that while I feel as though my band is part of the problem, I'm not going to even make it sounds as though I don't have any blame. I eat a lot of  crap. And I drink some crap, too. Lots of empty calories go into this body.

All of that leads me to why I've resurrected this blog after all these years ...

Tomorrow, in an attempt to gain some kind of control over my health, I'm starting Whole30. It's basically a dietary approach to reducing inflammation and increasing gut health. For 30 days, I eat quality meat, veggies & fruit, and healthy fat. No dairy (except clarified butter and ghee), no grains, no alcohol or tobacco (neither are a problem for me), and no added sugar/sweeteners (that means no stevia, too).

Everything that's wrong with me seems to have a basis in chronic systemic inflammation:

  • Diabetes
  • High Blood Pressure
  • High Cholesterol
  • Fibromyalgia
  • PCOS
  • Asthma
There's even some evidence that inflammation is a contributing factor in bipolar disorder! And, my PCP just referred me to a neurologist to evaluate me for MS (and hopefully rule it out!). 

Getting the inflammation under control could be a key to better health for me. And I'm so sick and tired of being sick and tired, as the saying goes. I feel like crap more often than not, these days, and I long to feel better. I know a lot of the problem is my weight; I get that. But I also know that just 20 pounds ago, I was regularly doing yoga without props. 

And, I think getting a handle on my diet (as opposed to dieting) and my health will support weight loss. As I told my best friend (affectionately referred to on the blog as 'Jane') a few days ago -- I've never improved my health without losing some weight in the process; but I've certainly lost weight without improving my health (Anyone remember the Cambridge diet?).

I know this is long, but please hang in there with me. 

The reason I decided to breathe some lift back into this blog is that I wanted to blog anonymously again. Not many people know about my lap band, and so I didn't want to talk about it on a blog under my name -- and I think the lap band will be a factor in my success on Whole30. Why? Well, for one thing, I'm supposed to eat one to three cups of veggies per meal -- and that's in addition to one to two palm-sized servings of protein, maybe a little fruit, and some healthy fats -- three times a day. There is no freaking way I can even eat toward the small side of those portions at one meal. 

I figure I'm going to have to do some adjusting and experimenting as I go along. And hopefully, what I experience will help someone else in a similar situation somewhere down the line, 

If you read this far, thanks for sticking with me! My goal is to blog at least a couple of paragraphs each day. I haven't decided if I'll post my meals every day, but certainly, I'll talk about my experiences and challenges as I go through the process. 

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