This is written by Megan Braley.
“I am so grateful to you and this blog, Mikhaila!
I had been eating a paleo diet after the birth of my first child in 2012 because of insane mental fog and depression coinciding with abdominal inflammation. I had started out with the gaps diet [http://www.gapsdiet.com/ (I was actually wondering if you had read anything on the legitimacy of this)] because no one could tell me what was the matter, so my mother-in-law and I decided to take matters into our own hands and see if diet could make any difference. So I started off eating a bunch of soups made from boiling the bones in water: REAL broth. Then I started adding back in foods and thought that I was getting better.
But then I did that for two years (and was getting CRAZY tired of soups) and then started getting crazy acid reflux so I went to another doctor, who was like, “It’s probably because you are not eating enough carbs.” …So I went back to eating grains, though whole grains, nothing refined.
Inflammation returned, mind fog, but so subtly that I almost didn’t notice until I woke up one morning with that mushroom cloud over my head of depression that is so hard to see, to think, and everything seems like it’s in pain. Doctors run a bunch of tests, endoscopy and colonoscopy. They can’t find anything, but here’s a prescription for a crazy high dose of proton-pump inhibitor to take for the rest of your life. (That just sounded really sketchy to me). But I took it at the time because it was my only option.
So it just after the birth of my third child that I run into a video of you and your dad on this Canadian news show. My husband and I then realized that I let my doctor bully me into eating something that I knew was bad for my body. I decided that I had to take matters into my own hands (because knowledgeable as they are, doctors can have no upper hand on the complexity of the human body. My body always gives them a run for their money, anyway) and took out dairy, all grains, legumes, and nuts. I can tolerate two kinds of carbs, sweet potato and plantains, which I have to eat 1/2 cup of with every meal or I get acid reflux. Oh, and GREENS. I thought I was a green eater before, but no. The checkers at the grocery store laugh at me because of the piles of veg that are on the conveyor belt.
I do have a history of PTSD and GAD, and I think whatever is going on with my gut is stress related because anytime reality throws me one my abdomen swells like crazy. I am overweight, and it is super hard to lose weight with three kids, even with the special diet, but I am slowly coming down, having lost about 25 pounds in the two months that I have been eating better. (Most of that was inflammation.) I still have to swell at the end of every day, more on days when I’m stressed. But diet definitely helps it not get as bad as it would get if that makes any sense. (I experimented taking out certain veg but it doesn’t really affect the outcome of the swelling any.)
I just wanted to mention that I feel your pain about being a ball of unrealized potential. I feel that every day. I am so grateful that you are documenting your crazy journey because there are people like me that need to hear it. I know one day all of this nonsense is going to come together and you are going to find some modicum of sense in the whole thing, and it will be worth it, I guarantee it. Thank you for your honesty, your candor. I really wish you the best of luck with your health — God be with you!!”