Wednesday, October 3, 2012

October 3

A few months ago, I went to a breakfast/morning meeting at a Singles Conference. I'm not going to lie, the biggest draw was the all-you-can-eat bacon at the breakfast buffet. Also, I had made a deal with myself that I was going to attend two local singles events a month and part of the event was filling care packages for the military. (Bacon AND sending the soldiers some love?! I was in!)

The speaker at said event was none other than John Rhode. (Super duper nice guy. Here's a link to his website, if you don't recognize the name because you are like me and have never watched an episode of Biggest Loser - much to my nurse's consternation - in your whole entire life.) At the breakfast before his talk, he spent a good 20-30 minutes at my table, chatting it up with us ladies. He shared some diet and workout tips and tricks, told some stories, passed around his iPhone to show us some pics. It was a good time.

Among the info he passed on was the little tidbit that most people are allergic to sugar. I had never heard this before, so I asked for verification of what he meant by "allergic". It turns out, he meant:

al·ler·gy   /ˈælərdʒi/ Show Spelled[al-er-jee] Show IPA

noun, plural al·ler·gies.

1. an abnormal reaction of the body to a previously encountered allergen introduced by inhalation, ingestion, injection, or skin contact, often manifested by itchy eyes, runny nose, wheezing, skin rash, or diarrhea.

Okay, he didn't mention diarrhea as a possible allergic reaction (that was courtesy of, but I would think it's very possible. He listed headaches, nausea, mouth sores, etc.

I was shocked. Horrified, even, that my friend Sugar could make something like this happen to any one person's body - let alone the majority.

He explained that most people don't even realize the effect that sugar has on their bodies, because they eat it so consistently that they don't associate what they're eating with how they're feeling sluggish and otherwise un-well. He said that if someone stopped eating sugar for 60-90 days and then reintroduced it, they would feel the effects of sugar and be able to see how it impacts them.

I thought that over, and came back with, "I'm pretty sure that even if I knew chocolate caused me pain, I'd still want to have it every day."

He (and the rest of the table full of women) laughed. ... Like I was kidding or something.


People, after my last surgery, I was rendered unable to digest sugar. Seriously, unable to process sweet treats. It was about a thousand shades of tragic.

In July, I couldn't eat even two bites of a cupcake without my mouth having a canker sore breakout. At the end of August, the sweet pork in a salad I ate made my throat swell up. Two weeks into September, I was still having to brush my teeth within a half hour of eating an ice cream cone, lest the sugar settle in and make my tongue all weird and my throat sore.

But I persevered. I kept at it. ... Why? Because even if I am allergic to sugar, I still LOVE it.

And guess what? Over three months after surgery, sugar is still making my throat hurt. It's also giving me raging headaches. (Tonight I had a piece of cake with cream cheese icing and the sugar seriously put my head in a vice.) But I am eating it again, and that makes me happy. It is, after all, my birthday month, which means that all bets are off when it comes to eating like a responsible grown up. (And I do have a looooot of frozen cake in my house!)

I may have a sugar allergy, folks, but don't you worry about that stopping me from eating it. ... It might stop a normal, rational person with an ounce of self control, but it won't stop me.