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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Candyland is Overrated

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Since early December, I have struggled with hives.  I have also developed a secondary condition called dermographism, in which my skin  raises up in welts and itches when scratched or even if there is just too much pressure or friction from tight clothes, heat, or exercise.

My dermotologist, while able to accurately diagnose the problem, was able to perscribe meds to cover the symptoms but could offer no solution to the root cause of the problem.  He called the conditions "stress-induced", which I think is probably true because my father-in-law passed away two weeks before Thanksgiving, and that put a lot of stress on top work stress during an already difficult holiday season.

The derm told me to continue taking 2 claritin (20mg) each morning and a benadryl at night.  This was great as masking my symptoms, but breakthrough itching made it clear that the condition was not gone.  So I decided to try acupuncture.

My first treatment was last Wednesday at 4 pm, and that night I did not need any antihistamines to sleep.  The hives were gone from that point on, but the dermographism continued.  My second treatment was last night, and it was not as effective at addressing the condition, but it has slowly been getting better.  My acupuncturist has hopes that it will eventually be managed and the itching and welts will appear less frequently and intensely until they are gone.

My acupuncturist believes that there is an imbalance in my liver that is preventing my body from efficiently flushing toxins.  Stress, she says, is a contributing factor because it presents the smooth flow of blood through the liver.

the whole focus of my blog is my healthy journey, so I guess it is time to admit to the world that I struggle with binge eating.  Binge eating has repeatedly been a major stumbling block in my weight loss and relationship with food.  And my binge foods of choice are nearly always sugary carbs or chocolate.

I asked my acupuncturist if she felt there was some connection between eating large amounts of sugar, white flour, or chocolate and the problems with my liver.  She said that it is possible, because digesting large amounts of sugar puts a great strain on the body systems.

I have known for a while that sugar is not good for me.  At the same time, I struggle to control the compulsive eating behavior or binge eating.

Thinking about my skin and health, I have decided to try and go sugar free until Friday night this week.  For me, that means so "junk" food and no added granulated sugars.  Honey and maple syrup are OK.  I already avoid artificial sweeteners so that is not an issue.  I don't think I've consciously eaten corn syrup in over a year!

Are there any readers out there struggling with any of these health issues?  Have you discovered that Candyland isn't as sweet at is appears?

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