Eating “Normally”

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Yesterday for my birthday (thanks for all the birthday wishes!) I cheated on my food intolerance diet and treated myself to Chinese. I took these pictures to document the effects because I know some people think I’d feel better if I just ate “normally”. I’m positive any food that makes my stomach go from flat to 3 months pregnant in a matter of hours isn’t any good for my already struggling body! I don’t regret my cheat because it made the day special, but by the end of the night I was having trouble getting good deep breaths, my nose was stuffy, I had a headache, and my bloated stomach was uncomfortable. I can’t wait for my stomach to deflate! I only look 2 months pregnant today. 😊

Funny story… As a teenager my mom would (unbeknownst) to me notice my “pregnant” belly and become concerned. Later the next day, my baby belly would be gone. She never said anything because how do you tell a teenage girl sometimes her belly looks anything except flat? And in fact sometimes look pregnant? She finally told me about how she had noticed this when I pointed it out myself college. It wasn’t another 2 years until I figured out my intolerances and left behind my baby belly for good! I had always thought everyone’s stomach did that because I knew no differently.

I told Jake I could put the 5 hour picture of my belly on Facebook with a smiley face and everyone would say congratulations!

27 thoughts on “Eating “Normally”

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  1. First…cute belly button piercing πŸ™‚

    I’m glad you were able to make your day special, but I know that it stinks to have to suffer in order to make the day special.

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  2. The photo is interesting because this drastic difference isn’t something I have noticed with me so much as I have with my daughter! We have noticed that her stomach on the norm is like a washboard and then suddenly it will bloat out. I have been wondering if she has some food intolerances (and also me).. especially because of issues she’s had since a baby in regards to stomach, asthma, sinuses (including polyps she had to have removed via surgery). I should start keeping a food diary for the both of us.

    Happy Birthday, by the way!! πŸ™‚ I would have cheated too.

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    1. I had stomach problems as a baby — my stomach had to be pumped during birth and I had colic. Around the age of 19, when I realized my stomach wasn’t normal, I’d try eliminating various groups of food with minimal success. It wasn’t until I went and got an IgG test (tests for intolerances not “true” or IgE allergies and can give false positives) that I eliminated tons of groups of foods and saw results! I slowly added in some foods and found I can tolerate them while others are still not options. Maybe I’ll write a post about the whole experience of trying to conquer my tummy if you think it could be helpful?

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      1. I would love that whenever you get a chance! My issues with diet changes has always been a time and energy problem. I know I would likely feel better with certain diet changes but I don’t feel like i have the time or energy to figure it all out sometimes.

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        1. Alright, I’ll lay it all out there. I also struggled because it was difficult keeping a food diary and connecting symptoms to foods. Ironically, the easiest way of all the approaches I tried was just eliminating it (20 foods or so) all at once. There was really nothing to keep track of, I just had to read labels. I’ll write all about it sometime this week πŸ™‚

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  3. Ooooooh my god, this is JUST what happens to me! Only it happens with all food- even my strict diet foods. What is your elimination diet, out of curiosity?
    I’m going to take photos of my tummy, too. I always had a flat stomach- I chalked it up to loss of abdominal muscle tone from moving so little.
    Ps: happy belated birthday! May ladies are the best! πŸ˜‰

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    1. I had the help of an IgG test to guide me. Elimination diets where I did one thing at a time never worked for me and that’s probably because there’s so many foods that bother my stomach. The main groups I ended up keeping eliminated were poultry, soy, dairy, egg, and gluten.

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    1. Okay, I’ll write it up. I’ll warn you now, in the end I just had to give up a TON of food at once and slowly add it. So it’s no miracle solution, but I’ll still share my process. πŸ™‚

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  4. Oh the baby belly! Seeing as I’ve had a hysterectomy I always get funny looks at my baby belly which can appear within a matter of hours and disappear in the days that follow. I get a good chuckle out of the sly looks I get especially from people who know me just well enough to think they might remember I can’t have kids but not well enough to be sure they remember that fact correctly. *giggle* πŸ™‚

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  5. I inflict the “baby belly” pain quite often on myself. I can’t afford to lose any weight so I deal with the bloatedness and funny stares. I would say I’m about “3 months” right now.

    P.S. This post made me giggle πŸ™‚ Gotta find humor in our flaws or life would be no fun!

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    1. Do you have food intolerances? The only time I get it now is if I eat something I shouldn’t. I eat lots of avocado, nut butters, and coconut oil to keep my weight on.

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      1. I know I am sensitive to eggs for sure and also anything with corn. I’m sure I am sensitive to more than that but have not had the time to make a food journal. The kids keep me too busy. Hoping to get a chance in a couple weeks when both kids are with their dads πŸ™‚ I have been getting in the habit of eating more peanut butter and I already LOVE avocado and also swish and swallow a tablespoon of coconut oil every night. I do it for the antibacterial/anti-fungal purposes, but I have noticed my weight is at least steady since I added in the coconut oil. My acupuncturist had me try a Paleo like diet. It helped with some of my fatigue, but I lost 8 lbs in a matter of 2 weeks so I went back to eating the carbs with it. I will have to find a happy median πŸ™‚

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  6. While I’m much bigger to start with, I also have distention after eating. I’m now doing Nutrisystem, which means more frequent smaller meals, and more protein. I’m hoping that helps :/

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    1. I hope it helps too! The baby belly is so uncomfortable. It’s not like you don’t already have enough to deal with. When I “cheat” or eat a heavy meal, I take digestive enzymes and that helps minimize the bloating, probably because my food has had help getting broken down. Prior to figuring out my intolerances, I took them with every meal because they helped so much. If you ever want to try it, I like Source Naturals Dily Essential Enzymes.

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      1. I take papaya enzyme tablets and simethicone. I think some of mine also has to do with the diabetes, and some delayed emptying from that along with the dysautonomia (which can be caused by diabetes). Either way, it’s uncomfortable. :/

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  7. So, that happens to me all the time…and I did totally think that’s how everyone was….and now I’m totally freaked out lol. Am I intolerant to something? ACK. 😦

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    1. Could be! It’s definitely not normal from what I’ve come to understand from talking to gastros and other people. Prior to figuring out my intolerances, digestive enzymes helped a lot. I love Source Naturals, Daily Essential Enzymes!

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        1. I always sucked at it to, don’t feel bad. It turns out there were so many things I am intolerant to that I ate regularly.(dairy/soy/gluten/egg/banana and it goes on) It made it hard to catch when it was so many things! My most successful venture was eliminating one suspected food at a time for 2 months then reintroducing it and seeing how my body reacted. This still wasn’t ideal though because of all the foods I was missing! An IgG test is what made it all clear for me.

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  8. I guess we are ahead of the game having my (almost 10) year olds intolerances labeled as gluten, dairy, soy, dyes, and anything with seeds. Boy do I know it if we mess up too! Sometimes it really stinks not being able to eat what you want. Then I remind her she will be leaner, and likely the envy of her girlfriends!

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    1. She will be! I never knew when eating would result in my suddenly looking pregnant. It was not fun and no food tastes good enough to merit it. If I decide to cheat, I know I will be in sweats and loose shirts for a few days! Tell her I really admire her self-discipline.

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