Right about now a burger sounds really great.

I could also really dig a slice of bread with butter.

But I should not be thinking about these tempting foods. What I should be thinking about is how far I’ve come in only two weeks and realize that in the scheme of things, this more restrictive diet will be but a drop in the bucket of time. Stay the course, Sharolyn, just stay the course. In two weeks I fly to Canada with the girls to visit my family for a month. The goal is to have reset my system well enough that I can have the occasional treat, can reintroduce some more fruits etc. and see what if anything might trigger my eczema.

The more I look at eczema and how it manifests for other people, the more I realize it’s very much like the term ‘colic’ for babies: it’s a general term for a condition whose trigger is unknown and whose cure is unknown.

I just decided that mine was a result of diet since I was aware that I had been eating less and less healthfully for a while. I decided that eating alkalizing foods would help what I felt was a very acidic system: I’d been eating lots of acid forming foods such as meat, dairy, sugar, and caffeine…so it just felt right.

I also wonder why it all suddenly culminated now…around the time I was recovering from a food poisoning incident. I figured my system had just been run too low. I’ve literally caught every cold this season along with my toddler and baby…so I knew my immune system had taken a beating. It also coincided with the worst allergy season in years due to the high volume of rain we finally received here in Cali.

I essentially self diagnosed. I did not want to see a conventional doctor, knowing full well that what would probably be prescribed was something topical, which is a temporary fix at best.

My brother-in-law asked “how do you know it’s food related?”

I didn’t know how to answer that other than, “how could it not be food related?” I am of the belief system that what we eat matters. As a human animal, an organism that relies on food, and good food, to maintain life, what we put in is our fuel. So it stands to reason that the fuel we put in is important. If I eat only mac n’cheese, then the fuel is sub par and this body starts to break down…without good food the immune system suffers and all manner of ills start to manifest. The gut is the gateway. What I’ve gleaned from numerous sources, not even related to eczema, but also cancer and other major illnesses, is that the gut is our first defender. If we have a healthy gut we have a healthy body. I never used to understand why some people swore by probiotics as the answer to fending off seasonal flues and colds. Now I do. Good intestinal flora=strong immunity. Sugar kills good flora, proliferates candida, causes “leaky gut” from which toxins can spill into your system. All manner of awfulness results from carelessly cramming your body full of non-foods…aka processed, not whole, foods.

If we are shopping in the middle aisles of the grocery store, we are killing ourselves. Food manufacturers probably know this, but they ain’t gonna stop until we say we ain’t gonna shop. Truly.

This does not mean all the joy of eating is in the past. Au contraire. Eating whole, organically grown, fresh, in season foods is an amazing experiences. I can actually feel the life-force of the food I eat –  what I mean is, because I know it is real fuel I am ingesting, it feels good both mentally and physically. Real food tastes amazing. Junk food, by comparison, full of preservatives and taste enhancers seems dead, alien, inert. Call me crazy.

One of my more successful meals (meaning my hubs and toddler really loved it): Tamari lemon chicken with anise braised with capers on a bed of raw organic kale wilted in avocado and lemon with soaked organic cashews.

So, how do I know “it is food related”? I know, because even if this eczema was triggered by, say, a new detergent (it wasn’t) or coming into contact with some allergen from a plant (I’m not aware of any allergy to plants), it isn’t the trigger causing this outbreak, not really. It would be my failing system that has not been nourished well enough to support my immune system, allowing it to run down and be susceptible to outside triggers.

I am not out of the woods. My face and neck have cleared up  -yay! But my hands, the original source of my long-term eczema, are still cycling through swelling and itching, crusting and splitting. BUT, and this is a big but, the itching is less intense and possibly less frequent. I did have a weeping wound between my fingers for two days straight which was new and so very discouraging, but it too is drying out. My fingers feel overall, less inflamed. If I can stop the urge to scratch and the wounds can truly heal, then I think I may be well on my way to normal hands. Time will tell. And so, I continue on, green smoothies and veggie heavy meals sans most grains, dairy, sugar and caffeine.

On the purchasing front, we did have to go out and get a new appliance:20160514_170116.jpg

But only because, in a freak “trying to smash the beater bars onto the beater” accident, the hubs split the plastic body of our old one (and really damaged his finger nail in the process -ouch!).

It’s been a few days of failing appliances: first the beater, then my immersion blender got stripped out leaving me with no food processing capabilities (does not bode well for my kale chip making habit), and now our home desktop computer just kicked it.

We will have to make some decisions about what we can and can’t live with.

What else did we get up to this weekend that required no spending at all? Oh, just some puppy petting! I highly recommend it. We are helping out the breeder by getting the pups accustomed to people and kids. These amazing pups will go to homes as service dogs, like being a friend and comfort to autistic kids etc. Amazing.



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