5 Thu, 2011 § 10 Comments

 I feel sucker punched, like I did 1,000 crunches yesterday but the only thing working my abs were severe stomach cramps that knocked me off my feet mid-day.  I resisted the Spring “cleanse” / detox trend earlier this year, but today I am changing my tune.  I am not a fan of long-term “cleanses” or fasts & disagree they are really that good for your body; however, restricting & monitoring my intake seems to be the only way to narrow down the cause.

After work, I had planned to trail run or hike with Eisley before my spinning class.  I had not intended to leave work early & whimper in the fetal position until Dave got home.  These are definitely cramping my style.  At least a long phone call with an old friend distracted me a bit, but I wanted to move & sweat yesterday!

Years ago I realized sulphur dioxide, found in many packaged dried fruits, & other preservatives were to blame for tying my stomach into painful knots.  Now, I eat clean.  My diet is primarily plant-based & made up of whole foods only, void of  harmful preservatives.  The cause of my cramps has to be an intolerance to something specific.  Gluten plays a role, but I am not exactly sure to what extent.  Whole wheat seems to hurt, while spelt & kamut — which still have some gluten — sit better in moderation.

A “detox” seems like so much work — especially because I eat clean!  I’m tired of these cramps that “randomly” creep up & knock me flat though, so yesterday I started a food diary & plan to eliminate the common culprits:

  • all added sugar ~ I already avoid processed sugar
  • coffee ~ I don’t drink coffee regularly; as a treat, I might enjoy a cup once every few months
  • alcohol ~  I like the occasional glass of wine, vodka tonic, whiskey straight or quality dark brew, but again, I drink pretty rarely
  • gluten ~ recently I have been eating gluten rarely & in moderation
  • soy ~ I also eat tofu & tempeh in moderation & avoid most processed foods that sneak soy in
  • dairy ~ I have not been consuming any dairy for the last several weeks

Do you understand my frustration?  I have already eliminated most of these or consume them rarely.  Gluten stands out to me, & I did recently make a.mazing millet muffins with whole wheat pastry flour.  The culprit perhaps?  I tested another muffin yesterday evening, but no cramps happened. ??

I’m confused & feel a little lost.  I will figure this out though.


If you have any detoxing tips or experiences finding a food intolerance, please share!

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§ 10 Responses to Detox?

  • I’ve noticed lately that I can’t eat as much fruit and veggie as I’d like to. The fiber overload leaves me bloated and sometimes gassy or crampy. It’s a bummer because there’s nothing I like to eat more than a huge bowl of veg. Your issues seem more severe than this and I think you tend towards smaller meals anyway but just thought I’d throw out my two cents.

    • Allie says:

      I appreciate your two cents! Natalie also wondered if it was fiber-related. I don’t think I over-do it in that department, because — like you mentioned — I prefer small meals; but I will definitely keep that in mind if I can’t narrow it down. Thanks again for chiming in!

  • Natalie says:

    I know we have talked about it, but it does seem like something “fishy” is going on! My somewhat recent development (in the past year or so) is frequent heartburn and it is awful. I would really like to get it under control too. I think your food diary is a good start!

    • Allie says:

      The food diary is a bit tedious, but I’ll keep it up. It just doesn’t seem like a constant trigger is setting it off, so maybe something more is going on. Do you know what is causing your recent discomfort?

  • ashley says:

    If this is happening with some regularity–I’d go get it checked out. There is a lot more that goes on in the GI system (and us ladies also have a wonderfully prone to problems uterus) that can be to blame for stomach pain and cramps than what foods you put into your body. And given that you grew up on a ‘non-clean’ diet and didn’t chronically suffer from stomach cramps i’m doubtful food is your culprit. most bodies were designed to be able to eat dairy, soy, sugar and alcohol in moderation…and you don’t really develop an ‘allergy’ to all of them in a year! if it is something food specific, the doc can also help figure out what may be to blame. make an appointment!! 🙂

    • Allie says:

      The more I think about it, the more “food” just doesn’t totally make sense;because I do only eat those foods in moderation & the “triggers” seem to change. It doesn’t happen daily though. Can I just come live in DC? You can be my “doctor” & I’ll be your “chef”. 😉

  • Julia says:

    I’m sorry about the cramps – they sound miserable! I hope you are able to pinpoint the problem, either with a doctor or different food choices, although, I would hate for you to have to limit your food choices, that is never fun.
    I’ll be sending good thoughts your way!

  • Johanna B says:

    I had terrible painful stomach cramping before I found out I had Celiac Disease. I haven’t had any problems since I went totally gluten-free 18 months ago. I also agree with others about getting more fiber than my body can handle. I hope you are able to find the answers you need.

    • Allie says:

      Thanks for sharing your experience. I haven’t experienced the cramps again; hopefully I can narrow it down, because the “randomness” of it is driving me crazy.

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