Monday, June 4, 2012

Bad News

To make a long story short.....
I was driving to the grocery store this time last year when black fluid shot through my vision.
I immediately called the eye doctor since it stayed fixed in my sight.

I learned that I was suffering from a hemorrhage in my eye.
Basically, my retina was suffering from so much inflammation it just bled out.

At this point I was the lucky recipient 
of a Steroid shot right into my eyeball.

Since then I have been tested for everything from Leukemia,
MS, Rheumatoid Arthritis, yaddy yaddy, yadda!

After a year, a couple steroid shots, and a million tests later the swelling has not gone down too much.
The bleeding is under control but the swelling can't stay or I will suffer another hemorrhage incurring even more permanent damage to my vision.

I'd really like to keep my eye sight. 

Finally, after ruling out every terrifying disease and condition it has been determined that I, most likely, have some very bizarre allergies.

Today I learned what those allergies are and it's still sinking in.

Cottonseed Oil (Margarine, Mayo, chips, chocolate candies)
Annatto (additive found in most cheeses, butter, rice, desserts, etc.)
Sodium Propionate (found in pizza, pie crusts, baked goods, frostings, jams, jellies, cheese)
Peanut (ARGH, I love peanut anything!)
Apples (so very sad about this one)
Red Grapes/Raisins (also super sad)
Olive (How one earth will I live without olive oil???)
FD&C Red #3 (In pretty much everything, makeup, hair products, soap, lotion, pretty much any food that has any hint of color)
Along with some other lovely molds that naturally occur in any environment.

I'm feeling soooo discouraged.
We are talking about a COLOSSAL life change!
Basically I can not eat any single thing that is prepared by friend, family, restaurant, food manufacturer.

I'll be taking some time to research what all of this means for me on a daily basis.
I'll be back next week with some fun finishes.

But please, if you have any experience with this kind of thing 
do share!


  1. I am sooo sorry about the restrictions to your life. I can only imagine the growing pains to come. And, I'm glad you figured out what it was and can take measures to save your sight. I don't have any experience to share, just compassion.

  2. So not fun! So sorry to hear. But you will find the strength needed and get back on your feet. At least you know what the problem is and can build a plan to stay healthy. Hang in there!

  3. Oh that's sucky Lu. But at least you know what to avoid so you can heal your body. I had to restrict a ton of things a few years ago. It wasn't as hard as I thought it would be and I felt amazing. So much energy and my skin was fantastic.
    Good luck xxxx

  4. While I don't personally have any experience with food allergies, a friend of mine does. A couple of her kids are allergic to quite a bit, and she happens to be studying food allergies at Vanderbilt right now. Here's her site:

    While the allergy side of it isn't updated regularly, she'd definitely convo with you if you have questions.

  5. Well that just stinks, doesn't it? It is great that they were able to pinpoint such specific things for you to stay away from, but that will take some time getting used to. Seriously, apples? I had no idea someone could be allergic to apples. Hopefully this transition is fairly painless and it helps restore the health of your eyes. That is a scary thing to mess with!

  6. So sorry to hear about your troubles. I have about 20 things I'm allergic to, and I developed them only a few years ago. It was quite an adjustment getting used to being so limited in eating, but it's doable. Many stores carry a lot more allergy-friendly products than before and restaurants have gotten better about providing lists of everything in their food. I rarely eat out, and only at a select few restaurants that work with my issues (garlic and onion and gluten, etc.), and I have a few close friends who always prepare something for me and check ingredients carefully. It's a total pain, but it is manageable, especially when it makes you feel better (and see better!) Best of luck to you.

  7. Hi Lulu, I'm sorry to read your news. It takes a bit of getting used to. I have food issues, as do my children. We are restricted with a lot of what we eat. But fortunately it is getting easier to buy the right foods. You will find the bright side of your situation, whether it be weight control, better skin, more energy, not to mention your eyesight. When I first got diagnosed I couldn't believe how good I felt when I eliminated the culprits. Going from 50% to 100% felt AMAZING! I live without alcohol, dairy, wheat, processed foods and sugar. I get so much enjoyment from food like fresh pineapple. I don't miss the contraband food now because my palette has adapted and I associate them with feeling rotten (itchy eyes and skin and aching joints for me, amongst other things)

  8. Oh, I forgot to mention. My latest discovery is rice bran oil for cooking. I did a cooking class a few weeks ago where the cook used it. It has a higher smoking point than olive oil and makes roast potatoes amazingly crispy. Might be a good replacement from some of those fast foods you have to say goodbye to.

  9. oh no! i am so so sorry! i wish i could take it all away for you! i will come visit again soon and we can go shopping and drink water! xo xo xo!!!

  10. oh, Lu, I am so sorry. This is a huge life changer. My mom had a retinal hemorrhage and she lost her central vision. You are much too young for that to happen to you. I am so glad that they found out the cause, now it will take some time to figure out how to live with it. I have added you to my prayer list!

  11. Oh I'm so sorry to hear this! Allergies are terrible, and living with strange side effects that no one (even many doctors) have heard of isn't easy. Stick with it and it'll get easier. I don't have food allergies but I've got a ton of random skin allergies that cause crazy reactions. I also suffer from ridiculous sinus problems that stem from a mold allergy. It's good to finally have some answers though. Hopefully knowing what's causing the problem will be the first step toward some relief! Good luck! I hope it gets easier for you!!

  12. Holy smokes. I really feel for you! My goodness. I have to tell you something that I'm testing to see if it will get rid of my allergies. It is totally something new to me, never heard of it before, but I have a friend who was able to become completely free of her allergies. She's told many people about her story, they do it and they keep getting results and then telling other people, they get results, and so on!

    It's called NAET -Nambudripad's Allergy Elimination Techniques. I don't know if you're into any kind of alternative medicine, but if this stuff works like they say it does, I will soon be allergy free. FREE. Google it if you want to learn more. Hopefully there will be a practitioner where you are.

    Good luck!

  13. :(
    What a bummer, but I hope this works!
    And Coconut oil is DELICIOUS. :)

  14. Sorry to hear of your struggles, Lu. :( I hope and pray that your dietary adjustments will help to resolve your vision problem. I struggle with a few things myself, that while perhaps not as threatening as yours, I know what it's like to have something that goes unexplained for so long. Wishing you all the best.

  15. Oh my goodness how scary Lu! I'm sure it's better to know now though, even though it does seem overwhelming and will definitely be a challenge to find what will work for you now.

    You're in my thoughts that you can find a comfortable new normal! Hang in there.

  16. I have no remedies.... I just wanted to remind you about your healthy, beautiful babies. Let their voices be your strength and their hugs help boost your will. All the best to you!

  17. I was hoping they would say you were allergic to pigs feet or something that you wouldn't miss. :( I feel rotten for you. Maybe try almond butter in place of the peanut butter if you love it. If you need to got out to shop for fabric to drowned your sorrows I am always available.

  18. Sorry to hear this news! It will be a tough change, but I know a few people who have really had to watch their diets and they've always turned out much happier and healthier! It would probably help all of us to cut a few of these out. Keep us updated!

    Also, I love Chagrin Valley Soaps for all natural skin and hair care. It took awhile for my hair to adjust to the shampoo bar, but with a little ACV, it looks happy and clean now!

  19. I have a friend with many dietary restrictions who also studies to be a nonmedical practitioner. She too was said to be allergic to apples, but she says it is often only the apples in the supermarket because they are genetically engineered and mixed from different species (sorry, English is not my native language). She can eat organic apples from old species without problems. I could name you a few, but living in Germany I don't think we have the same apples that you have.

  20. Coconut oil would be a healthy alternative to use. It has a high smoking point and has other health benefits. Is annatto an additive used in the polishing and preserving of white rice? If so, you can buy organic brown rice. When Dad was working on his doctorate at U.C. Berkeley, he learned that brown rice is the food that allergists have you begin with as a basic diet because it is allergen free. Then other foods are added slowly. Try Challenge butter (sold at Day's Market). it is from Dublin, California, and is a natural product with no additives. I'm not surprised about peanuts. They are high in fungus and mold (as are corn and mushrooms). When Dad went on the alkaline diet and began to hydrate with water each day (3+ liters), he allergies began to subside. He was able to eat grapes and strawberries again. We've learned that you don't have to own an allergy for life. Good luck. You can do it!