I have decided to go back on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) 100% (well, maybe I'll still eat a bit of chocolate?). For the past year, especially during my pregnancy with Leo when morning sickness practically forced me to ingest soda crackers, I've eaten many "illegal" foods and luckily the Crohn's hasn't been really bad...but I haven't felt as good as I did during the previous two years on the SCD with no cheating. My biggest symptoms have been slightly increased stool frequency and bloating. But nothing bad enough to make me completely stop eating grains and sugar. Once you start again, I warn you, it's pretty darn hard to stop.
Our pediatrician thinks that 2-month-old baby Leo may have a milk protein intolerance (fussy, spitting up, flecks of blood in his stool), so I have had to eliminate dairy from my diet since it passes through my breast milk. The good news is that after three weeks, Leo's symptoms are nearly gone. The bad news is that it's hard for me to get enough calories if I'm eating SCD without the legal yogurt, cheese, and butter. And most of my go-to SCD recipes contain some form of legal dairy, which means I need to rethink my meal repertoire once again. As a quick fix for this problem, I've been trying my luck with a more traditional dairy-free diet minus wheat. I have been eating oat flour bread and some rice, potatoes (usually in chip form), sugar, and corn products nearly every day. I've still been eating SCD legal almond flour muffins and cookies, made with coconut oil instead of butter. (If I eat the legal stuff it will negate the illegals, right?)
Although I am not feeling really bad, I am starting to worry that I'm on the path towards it. The past couple weeks I've started noticing more mucus in my stool and some small streaks of red blood in the mucus. Also, my tummy is pretty tender if I press on it; if I have baby Leo stand on my belly it feels bruised, for lack of a better description. I could continue to eat this way and see how I do. My gastroenterologist says he can give me a round of prednisone if I have a flare while breastfeeding. But I worry that if I end up with a bad flare, I might have to go back onto the heavy meds like 6MP, and I'd have to wean Leo. I hated how I felt on 6MP. I don't want to go there again.
So, now it's back to SCD for real but MINUS dairy for Leo's sake. It will take some creative thinking. It was hard enough to do SCD in the first place, but once it became my norm it was much easier. Without yogurt, cheese, and butter, I will need to eat more meat, eggs, avocados, and olives to get the calories. SCD legal deli meat for lunch and a veggie and a fruit, and a couple legal coconut macaroons seem to fill me up. Also, I'll need to bake more almond flour treats, like the yummy muffin recipes on bethsblog, to curb my cravings for the "real" baked goods that my hubby and kids eat (and maybe I'll come up with a decent dairy-free SCD bread loaf). And eat more larabars and peanut butter. I know I can do it, it's just especially hard because I'm really hungry from breastfeeding and really tired from having a new baby, and because I've had a taste of all the yummy illegal foods that I hadn't eaten for so long.
For some reason I have this feeling of entitlement, like I've paid my dues and now I should be able to eat what I want. But I have to keep telling myself that being healthy is the most important thing. Especially since I've got three young kids to take care of. I wish to be lucky enough for SCD to heal my gut. To be able to return to a healthy version of "normal" eating. Now I'm realizing that I may have to eat SCD indefinitely...this is hard for me to swallow.