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Eating...or not eating

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Old 11-09-2005, 03:54 PM   #1
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Default Eating...or not eating

So much of how I eat & what I eat changed 5 years ago when I contracted gastroparesis (chronic nausea & vomiting- mine was caused by a stomach flu bug that damaged the nerves to my stomach). Its so frustrating- what I can eat is so limited- no raw vegetables (and I don't like most of them cooked ), not too spicy, should be low fat & low fiber (though I seem to be doing okay with grain based fiber that is cooked); plus I have food allergies that limit things even more so many prepared foods are out of the question. Its so hard to get a balanced diet without just eating protein bars & drinks.

I have to eat very, very small amounts at a time & some days it seems like I'm eating all day long. Its hard to think about eating healthy when I'm just struggling just to eat. I didn't have to think about food much for a couple years, as I was completely dependent on a feeding tube to get my nutrition. I'm pretty much transitioning off the feeding tube, but still rely on it when I get days I can't eat at all (it actually bypasses my stomach completely so I also use it to take most of medications). On bad days, even with the feeding tube, its hard to get enough nutrition & water in without being so nauseous & miserable all the time. I know the ups & downs in my daily calorie amount is not healthy; I know technically what is needed, but I just can't get it mentally/emotionally/whatever...

I feel like my relationship with food is sooooo screwed up- it wasn't great before all this started...but now...I don't know. I am just at a loss at this point... I love to cook & bake- too many times I will make something wonderful, but when I sit down to eat the nausea gets so bad that I can't think of eating it. Other days, I can eat okay and have to watch I don't eat so much. I think its the switching my mentality from day to day that is tripping me up- one day I need every calorie I can get and another day I have to go into 'diet' mode. HELP!



Edit- forgot to spell check
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Christine Restarting all over....again...but at least I'm trying
Taking little steps~ 10- 15 pound steps to be exact
1st Step~12/20/05 ~~~ 2nd Step~1/31/06
~~~2/21/06 I've released 10% of my body weight!!!~~~
Now onto Step #3 of 10- Releasing another 15 pounds~
One for each 5 pounds released
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Old 11-09-2005, 04:06 PM   #2
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Have you worked with a dietitian? I would think that, with your illness, insurance would cover it. I would hesitate to try to advise anyone with a serious condition as you describe. Are there informational websites or books for people with your illness?
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Old 11-09-2005, 04:25 PM   #3
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I agree with funniegrrl. I would suggest trying to see a dietitian, I'm surprised your doctor hasn't recommended it for you. Maybe see your doctor and try to get with a dietitian to find out what will work for you.
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Old 11-09-2005, 05:22 PM   #4
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Wow, Christine...that is QUITE a challenge!

I'm sorry you have to go through all of this.
I just wanted to say that I'm here to offer support and I think you're very brave to be facing all of this.

Linda
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Old 11-10-2005, 05:08 PM   #5
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I've seen the nutritionalist and/or dietitions several times- they have been great at telling what I need as far as nutrition but they aren't always as good on the emotional aspects of eating. I have guidelines I have to follow as far as number of calories per day, amount of H2O, amount of protien, etc- thats the easy part. For me, its more the struggle to change my mentality about food. When I first got sick it was so strange to be reading labels to look for the higher calorie foods because I needed every calorie I could get when I was struggling to eat- I gave away a lot of my 'diet friendly' foods that I could no longer use...the dirrect opposite of what most of us do when we start a diet when we try to eliminate the higher calorie items, if we can. Now it seems like I have to make the switch back and forth every few days- one day I need lower calorie options to satisfy me and other days I need the higher calorie versions- it means I have to have different options available, like some days I drink CrystalLite & others I drink 100% fruit juice.

I had done WW in the past so I've gone back to using their points system to track my intake and because of the flexibility of banking points, which I really need. I had to modify it a little- when I started WW it was before the 4pt cap on fiber so I still count all fiber since so limited on eating fiber- if its something I can tolerate, I'm going to count every gram I can & I didn't calculate the points for my formula exactly since it has a higher fat content, but its is a balanced/healthy fat (I count it as 8 pts when technically it should be 8.9- if it had no fat at all it would 7.5 so I sort of averaged the numbers). I am working hard at not only sticking to the points guidelines (somedays I really, really struggle just to use my minimums), but my new goal is to have the points spread fairly evenly throughout the day....something I know isn't happening by looking back at the past few weeks.

I have to say just posting this yesterday and finally admitting 'outloud' what I was having problems with made a big difference. As simple as it sounds, I changed when I start counting my points so the formula is the last thing instead of the first. I've also thought about checking out the Weight Loss Surgery forum, since they have a lot of similar issues with what they can eat and such- I don't know why I didn't think of it earlier The other thing I have to deal with is that my metabolism is pretty screwed up from being so ill and struggling for so long just to get enough calories in- I was always so careful to not go on any drastic diets or get into yo-yo dieting. I do plan on double checking how nutritious my diet is occasionally by running random days through FitDay. Ironically I used FitDay when I was struggling to eat to make sure I would get enough calories in and when I showed the print outs to my nutritionalist she was impressed and planned on recomending it to other patients.
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Christine Restarting all over....again...but at least I'm trying
Taking little steps~ 10- 15 pound steps to be exact
1st Step~12/20/05 ~~~ 2nd Step~1/31/06
~~~2/21/06 I've released 10% of my body weight!!!~~~
Now onto Step #3 of 10- Releasing another 15 pounds~
One for each 5 pounds released
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Old 11-11-2005, 01:46 PM   #6
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It's good to see your outlook has changed a little. I'd recommend checking out all threads on this Forum. Wonderful advice and information from everyone.

~Dee
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