Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Coeliac Clinic

I was at the coeliac clinic in Galway university hospital outpatients yesterday. I lost a lot of weight. My normal weight is between 76-80 kg, usually close to 80. My weight is 69.5 kg. Mainly because I'm on a limited food budget and have to walk a lot to where I need to go. But the doctor ordered another biopsy to see what's going on in my small intestine. I don't know when that'll be yet. I was functioning very well over the summer because I was eating well. Not quite eating enough but eating the right food. But with college I have started to look for short cuts just to be able to eat something and some of my old symptoms are returning. I will try to move to a place that takes rent allowance as well and closer to the college so that I can eat a bit more and have more time on my hands. Anyway, there were also various blood tests taken. They'll contact me if there's anything wrong. But the last bloods in May were so good the nurse giving me the details thought I wasn't coeliac. I expect these to be the same. We had a poor summer so I'll have to watch for a vitamin D deficiency. I'm expecting that blood test to show low vitamin D.
I also saw the dietitian. She explained fodmaps to me and also told me to try and get more fat in my diet to get back up to my normal weight. But she said I have to cut down on sugar first because it could be an imbalance between good and bad bacteria and intestinal yeast that's causing me to crave sugar. I have to get the gut flora balance first before I can gain weight. The dietitian will make another appointment for me to see her. I wish she explained fodmaps and took the time to tailor a diet suitable to my body's needs first time in April of last year because I haven't seen a dietitian in between and it might have saved me a lot of suffering through trial and error. But she said she hopes to get a more detailed analysis of my diet and come up with a better plan in the next appointment.
To sum up, here's what I think is going on in my digestive system: there was (slowly but surely) gut healing over the summer because I was eating a lot of the right food and was functioning well. My energy levels were never quite 100% because my limited budget meant I was probably averaging under 2,000 calories per day. So I lost weight. Since moving to Limerick and starting college I have not been able to eat as much as I did over the summer due to time and budget constraints and having to walk long distances to get where I need to go. I have also been taking short cuts by buying quick and easy processed foods and sharing accommodation and the college canteen means cross contamination risk. So some of my symptoms from the spring are returning. I think the new biopsy won't show up much, if any, damage. That'll prove that I know why I lost so much weight.