Our last column began a discussion into health, disability and the medical profession as well as insurance company decisions. The weeks’ column will touch on some of the findings I have come across during my last 2 years of health issues.
One of the most interesting finding was the difference between organic and non-organic products. Okay, I’m one of those people who would be mocking my wife’s decisions for organic this, organic that, blah blah blah, organic milk that is “grass fed”, non-GMO, etc. etc. The only items she did not include were gluten free foods. I would use the terms tree hugger, quinoa eater, and others in a joking yet loving manner. That is until I started having severe stomach problems and diarrhea at least 1-15 times per day for months on end. Finally, I decided to see a gastroenterologist and went to a highly rated hospital in Philadelphia. Sitting there with the doctor I explained that my symptoms were daily and continuous. She performed multiple tests and diagnosed me with severe IBSD (irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea), gastritis, reflux and some other medical terms pertaining to digestion. Fine, but what do we do about it was my next question. The usual responses were taking meds and making slight diet changes. I tried this regimen for 6 months with no or even worse results. It was at this time I began to LISTEN to my wife who stated I needed to go organic and see what happens. Suffering enough I agreed to do a month of testing with written results from our own trials and errors. We went to Wegmans and purchased a loaf of Wegmans’ sourdough bread. I ate a few slices plain to see if anything would happen and sure enough within the hour my stomach almost had me buckled over and I was on the toilet. We waited one week and this time bought Wegmans ORGANIC sourdough bread. I ate almost the entire loaf in one day and had no problems as far as stomach pains are concerned nor did I have to go to the toilet multiple times although I did have very bad indigestion. Hmmmm, have we found something here? We again waited a week and tried the regular sourdough and the results were the same, on the toilet with stomach pains within the hour. The following week, we replaced it with organic sourdough and again the results were no stomach cramps, yet indigestion. I went to my follow up appointment in Philadelphia and explained these results of our own experiments to the doctor. I also explained to her that when we went to Europe to visit my wife’s mother I did not have as many problems as I do here. She looked at me and stated that they are seeing a massive influx of European immigrants coming to the hospital with the same complaints. They are seeing this so much that they began their own investigation into what was happening and to see why they were having problems here in the United States, yet when back in their homelands they had no symptoms. This had put all the doctors on notice which led them to start investigating. What she told me next left me wondering if this was not population control by our government and industries. She explained that she could not be quoted on this but their findings had indicated that due to the wheat being slightly green and not dried out while harvesting, the combines were breaking down and costing millions in repairs. She stated that the farmers decided to spray Round Up on the wheat a week or two before harvesting which dried it up and allowed it to break off much easier without damaging the equipment. I told her I did not believe this to which she produced a paper showing in detail the findings of which she just explained. How true this is I do not know. What I do know is that this came from a doctor at a prestigious hospital with some of the best teams working there. Not letting this go, I began my own research and found similar results and information. I called the US Department of Agriculture and was transferred 9 times and put on hold for over 1 hour only to be hung up on. So much for freedom of information. I will continue to research this as I have spoken with a few farmers who stated they do not do this but have heard that others do. This is quite the eye opener for sure.
Getting back to my organic venture, I have decided that yes, I’ll say it clearly guys, MY WIFE WAS RIGHT, organic HAS made a huge difference in my stomach problems but I still have the IBSD but not as much of the severe pain and cramping 24/7. The acid reflux has also been reduced as another finding came to light, not from any of the doctors’ advice but from our own testing and results. The finding was that I cannot have grains. Yes, that’s right, after trying a multitude of various foods with grains I have found that THEY are the leading cause of my reflux, stomach cramping and bloating. The removal of grains in my diet followed months of experimenting by eating various grains of crackers, gluten free, organic, etc. indicting that each type of grain was giving me some kind of negative outcome. Pizza from my own family’s restaurants, breads, and cereals especially, even Muesli caused very bad reflux. This is not an easy item to remove from your diet as 75% of all we eat have some kind of grain in it.
The answers I am finding are somewhat vague due to hitting roadblock after roadblock, trying to find out factual information on the spraying of the wheat but I will continue my research and will post the results. However, I may have found some reasoning behind the large percentage of immigrants as well as our own population beginning to have gastrointestinal problems from our own food supply. Future columns will go into further detail as I begin to post recipes and other diet and lifestyle changes that are needed to help each of us try to have a better and more enjoyable life as we battle our own disabilities. I hope this brings you some insight as to why we need to work through this on our own and not rely on the medical profession for answers.