marydell: My hand holding a medusa head sculpture (by me) that's missing its snakes (Default)
[personal profile] marydell
So I've been tinkering with my various chemical intakes to try to resolve my fatigue problem. I'm off of HCTZ (diuretic) and my blood pressure is holding steady thanks to the other BP drug I'm still taking. I haven't had an antihistamine in 3 weeks. I tried to stop taking Zantac as well, but that's been declared a failure so I'm back on it as of last night.

Last Tuesday I stopped drinking Diet Coke*, which was my main caffeine vector. Thank God for Advil. All of the changes helped to take the fatigue down to a manageable level, but I still haven't felt what I would call energetic - haven't had a day where I managed to do all three of 1. work at my job 2. feed and bathe the boy and 3. cook for myself. With the idea that removing spare neurotransmitters seems to be helping, I haven't had any chocolate since Thursday. Recently I've been having some every day, since I've tested as no-longer-allergic to it and since soy lecithin isn't reactive for people with soy allergies, per various studies.

Saturday I took Charlie to the doctor, and then to the zoo, and then to lunch at McDonalds. Sunday I took him on some errands, and I did laundry and cooked. Both days I got a crapload of work done on my current graphics project.

So. I just can't have chocolate any more. I don't know what mechanism it's using to fuck with my brain, but it clearly is, because the fatigue seems to have just up and left. And I definitely felt better than I have recently, during the years when I didn't eat chocolate because of allergy.

On the one hand, I feel physically pretty good right now. On the other hand, I am in such a bad mood.

*Deja Vu: I did this last winter as well, and whined about it here, but had to get back on caffeine again as my tiredness started to interfere with driving. Going off the antihistamines seems to have fixed that enough that I can manage sans caffeine again.

Date: 2011-08-29 12:49 pm (UTC)
kate_nepveu: sleeping cat carved in brown wood (Default)
From: [personal profile] kate_nepveu
Sympathies! I went off it while nursing SteelyKid, as part of the great no-dairy-no-soy drop, and yeah.

Date: 2011-08-29 02:55 pm (UTC)
aedifica: Photo of purple yarrow flowers. (Achillea millefolium)
From: [personal profile] aedifica
Sadness! But at least you *know*, now. I had a super productive Friday and Saturday and I have *no idea* why. I'd like to do it again, if I can figure out what combination of factors let me! (And the sad thing is, my "super productive" is what I suspect lots of people consider "normal". Oh well, we live in the bodies we have.)

Date: 2011-08-29 03:58 pm (UTC)
cereta: Coraline (Coraline)
From: [personal profile] cereta
Aw, bummer :(.

Date: 2011-08-29 02:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I'm sorry. I don't suppose it acts as a sleep aid if you have it last thing at night?

Date: 2011-08-29 05:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Alas, no - it doesn't make me sleepy, it just seems that when I stop eating it, my inertia problem clears up. Going off the antihistamines seems to have fixed the lack of mental focus problem and going off the HCTZ cleared up the limbs-too-heavy-to-lift problem, but the inertia was continuing. So I think it's a neurological thing, maybe.

Unfortunately trying to google for neurological effects of chocolate gets me endless articles about "the love chemical!"

Date: 2011-08-29 03:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Just an idea. It may not be the chocolate but the sugar & carbs (carbs pretty are sugar). Many of your symptoms sound like reactions to carbs & gluten. I feel better & joints don't ache when I live primarily carb/sugar/gluten free.
Good luck!

Date: 2011-08-29 05:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I seem to do fine with carbs as long as they're somewhat slow carbs, but I'm trying to not eat candy either in case it's a generalized candy problem. Because I do love candy.

Date: 2011-08-29 04:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, my deepest, deepest condolences.
*hugs you*

Date: 2011-08-29 05:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thanks! The only mitigating factor is that I don't have a menstrual cycle any more so I don't have hormonal cravings. But I LOVE CHOCOLATE. Sigh.

Date: 2011-08-29 05:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, I hate these biochemical experiments!

How is your respiratory system doing in the absence of antihistamines? I sometimes think of discontinuing them as part of my own fatigue management, but when I have to do it for testing I become a giant sneezeball.

Date: 2011-08-29 06:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The trick is to switch to 1. steroids of various types and 2. singulair, if you are one of those people for whom singulair works. (It's for rhinitis as well as asthma). I'm taking singulair and alvesco (asthma steriod) daily, sudafed every day or two as needed for congestion, and nasonex (steroid nasal spray, unscented variety) is on standby if I have a flare-up. Also I am keeping visene-allergy and a cortisone cream in my purse to deal with itchy eyes and hives.

I was basically taking all that stuff anyway, and after the first 3 days my system kind of settled down. The antihistamines mask so much that I was exposing myself to a lot of allergens without noticing, and it took a couple of days to get back on the straight and narrow. With food allergy, exposure is a lot more controllable than with environmental allergies, of course, so if you're allergic to pollen or something uncontrollable it's harder to do this.

The difference in my mental acuity has been HUGE. The difference in my fatigue has been significant, and allowed me to stop ingesting tons of stimulants (caffeine and chocolate) so I could get to where I seem to be now.

So, not for everyone, but if your brain chemistry is like mine (and since we have all that other stuff in common, maybe it is!) it may be worth a go.

Date: 2011-08-29 07:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
That seems so entirely unfair. I haven't found a food correlation for my headaches, but I worry that I'll discover it's something I love, and then have to decide whether I'd rather have that or headaches.

Date: 2011-08-29 10:46 pm (UTC)
readinggeek451: (Cookie Monster)
From: [personal profile] readinggeek451
No chocolate?!! Woe!

My sympathies.

But I'm glad you're feeling more energetic.

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