Amitting I am wrong and doing nothing are two things I should practice more often.
Gluten intolerance. I was wrong about it. I thought it was a feel-good, fad diagnosis. I thought there were kids who had true wheat allergy (celiac sprue) and really didn't grow if they ate wheat. I was thrown by the fact that so many of the blogs I link to are written by women who are gluten intolerant. The non-randomness of this made me think it was a condition that was being overdiagnosed, just so physicians could tell their patients something.
But it is a very real and serious condition that plagues at least 1% of the population (2-3x more common in women) and most people who have it don't know it. It's serious because it doesn't just cause stomach problems and loss of energy, but there is a two-three fold increase in mortality when untreated, due to, among other things, a high risk of lymphoma! It can also be a trigger or seizures. This is all news to me. I read it in a Lancet seminar by Antonio di Sabatino from 2007. Great review. I can send the full text to those who are interested.
This topic became truly interesting to me as I attempted to go gluten free. This happened shortly before we moved back to Denmark. I have experienced an incredible increase in energy and decrease in stomach problems (accidents on tracks aside!). Plus a terrible rash around my eyes (that I had for nearly two years) has disappeared! I hadn't been entirely gluten free, so I doubted diet was the explanation. But apparently you don't have to be totally gluten free to reap the benefits. 10mg a day of gluten is okay, whereas 50mg is not (in terms of causing intestinal damage).
When I was in medical school, I was hospitalized with a life-threatning infection with clostridium dificile (spore-forming bacteria are best when avoided!). During this hospitalization, it was revealed that I had severe iron deficiency anemia and osteopenia (even a little osteoporosis). This coupled with a lifetime of irritable bowel and acid reflux brought up the diagnosis of celiac sprue (gluten intolerance). They asked if they could test me for it and I refused, saying I was not short so of course I didn't have it. Oh, how silly I was! When I think about it, I am a lot shorter than my mom and that probably is a little weird.
I have a doctor's appointment on the 16th, at which point I'll ask for the gluten antibody lab tests, but by that time, I will have been gluten free for so long that the antibodies probably won't be positive. But it's not important because I am not taking the chance of going back to my old diet. I wonder if my entire family will embrace my expensive, time-consuming diet?
Now maybe we also have an explanation for my improved running times?
Ok, as if we needed a reason to eat more chocolate. But now it also causes nobel prizes! Remember, Swedish chocolate is the most potent. (This is from this week's New England Journal of Medicine)
Photo from Mount Royal, Frisco, Colorado.
"Children are fascinated by the ordinary and can spend timeless moments watching sunlight play with dust. Their restlessness they learn from you. It is you who are thinking of there when you are here. It is you who thinks of then instead of now. Stop. Let your children become the teachers and you the student" - William Martin