Today has been enlightening. My husband and I have always joked about him constantly saying he’s choking when he’s eating. We knew he had GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease: stomach acid flows backwards up into the esophagus) and had attributed his constant regurgitation of meals to that. But lo and behold, it turns out he has Schatzki’s Ring and Celiac Disease.
Apparently Schatzki’s Ring can be a subsequent complication due to long-term GERD which causes both chronic inflammation and damage to the lower esophagus. Over time, as the damage heals, it forms a scar that is identified as Schatzki’s Ring which causes a narrowing of the lower esophagus that results in dysphagia (difficulty swallowing). Basically the food gets stuck in his throat when he swallows.
Can you imagine how frightening that is? Every time you eat, you have to worry about choking…. Now I feel terrible about all the years we joked about it! But thankfully he is a good sport and laughs right along with my twisted sense of humor.
Onto Celiac Disease. A digestive and autoimmune disorder where the ingestion of gluten (a protein composite found in wheat and related grains such as barley, rye, and a cross between wheat and rye that is called triticale) leads to damage in the small intestine in genetically predisposed people. I have heard about it for years. Worked with a few people who had it. Read articles here and there. And quite ironically had just read an article about a book on wheat intolerance and gluten sensitivity this morning while waiting for him to come out of the recovery room. In all honesty, I’d pondered the question before: Would my family be better off if we all ate gluten-free? I never did any serious research on the subject but was intrigued.
I am always looking for ways for us to live a better quality of life. We are not 100% organic, but we try to mainly buy organic foods and veggies, and “shop” in our little garden as frequently as possible. I make much of the food we consume from scratch to eliminate as many processed foods from our diet as possible. We do not allow any nut products in our house as it is because my oldest son has a severe peanut allergy, no mushrooms because my husband is allergic to mushrooms, and in recent years I have developed allergies to shrimp, scallops (Why me??? Do you even know how good bacon wrapped scallops are??? Ugh!), latex, and black beans of all things! Cruel joke universe. Cruel joke.
I guess the decision was made for me when the nurse handed me the findings report from the procedure. Gluten free it is for us! Now I will be on a mission to purchase gluten-free, nut free, shellfish free, mushroom free foods and find yummy recipes.
Here’s to another journey into the culinary world and the vast blogosphere to find more answers and hopefully some yummy recipes. If you have any good celiac blogs, recipes, or anything you’d like to share please comment on this blog post. It will be much appreciated.
Peace and love,
I know none of the above is a joke. It is all very serious. With that being said, we try to joke about stuff in our family. It is how we deal with all of the curveballs that life throws at us. Hopefully you read the above post with that thought in mind. Please do not post any rude or hateful comments. I will not tolerate it and will delete your comments. I endeavor to be surrounded by positivity and light. That is all. xoxo
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