Over the years of working outside in the sun, you tend to discover what your regimen should be for the long haul. After running a marathon fertilizing a bunch of lawns on a hot day you’d see my truck at the neighborhood Friendlys. I’d pop in for a root beer float which was one of my favorite snacks. What a delicious way to cool down. Eventually, I’d get home and collapse on the couch. If it was too hot, this treat did not do me any favors.
Fast forward about ten years and after having a few weird health problems my doctor kept diagnosing me with Acid Reflux. I took medicine for years but it never fully went away. Then at age 40 someone suggested I get a bone density test. I plunked down a fair amount of cash since as a business owner my health insurance has never been the best.
Anyway, the test revealed I had Osteopenia which is like 2 steps away from Osteoporosis. I freaked. I couldn’t believe that a person of my athletic ability could have bone loss. I’m not super athletic, but I certainly put my share of miles on the bones, plus I eat healthily. How could this be? I bought the prescribed Flosomax and got frightened when I started reading the possible side effects. Then I realized the proton pump inhibitors that I was taking for Acid Reflux caused bone loss. Great. Now what? So I decided to go off of those and completely change my diet to combat this acid reflux. Well, you know how hard it is to change things. I really loved the foods I ate and I thought they were healthy enough.
Eventually, I forgot about this and continued on except I developed Burning Mouth Syndrome. Have you ever burned your tongue on hot coffee or pizza? Well, I had that feeling except it didn’t go away! It was constant 24/7. I discovered a Facebook group that had thousands of subscribers with the same problem. No one knew what it was. Except for my doctor… She suggested Acid Reflux! I scoffed at that thinking it couldn’t be. I thought I changed my diet enough to not have acid reflux still I couldn’t stand the burning. It was so aggravating, maddening even.
I decided to go on a fast, which is basically not eating for an extended period of time. For a week I ate nothing but lettuce and water. I’ve always been thin so this fast didn’t help that. I lost 5 pounds. I started back with food slowly and discovered a few things. I was allergic to cinnamon. I didn’t think that was possible but there are others with the same allergy. Cinnamon is found in lots of places. Toothpaste and anything that is labeled “natural flavors”. No more apple pie, pumpkin latte, pumpkin bread, etc. You’d be surprised. I stopped using toothpaste after trying other products and realized it really isn’t necessary. Honestly, I started flossing and that was more effective than just brushing with toothpaste. My burning tongue eventually cleared up. Yea!
So how do I go about my day avoiding acid reflux and having enough energy? Well, I have reduced my meat consumption considerably and I no longer eat “health food bars” that are loaded with sugar as much as I used to. I used to eat a lot of sugar and reducing that has helped. Wine is impossible as well as chocolate. As soon as I have a sip the tongue burns. Eventually, I have been able to have these treats as long as they are limited. So I have to “choose my poison” as they would say.
I have to start my day with lots of protein because it requires a lot of energy to do what we do. Sometimes I start with an egg over easy with an English muffin and other times I make myself a smoothie. I got myself a Ninja blender and it works great. I start with a whole banana, 1/2 cup plain yogurt (I went to plain after finding out how much sugar is in them), then I’ll add about 1/4 cup vanilla almond milk and a cup of crushed ice. Occasionally I’ll feel the need to add some honey but now that I don’t eat as many sweets it’s easier to go without the added sugar. Somehow I’ve added a few pounds but I do feel like I have as much energy today as I did several years ago, so I must be doing something right.
Stay cool and take care of yourself. Bring lots of water or Gatorade, but stay away from the Rootbeer floats!