Endo Awareness Month Series: The Highs and Lows of Sugar
As I've mentioned in nearly every post (sorry), I'm pretty short of time these days! But I know a lot of you are really interested in the nutrition based side of managing endometriosis, so I wanted to do a quick yet informative piece on sugar.
Recently, I've noticed some interesting side affects of trigger foods due to my intolerances and IBS like symptoms of endo:
- Wheat and gluten make me feel nauseous, especially at night
- Sugar gives me pain in my endo areas within about 15 minutes and depending on time of the month and how much sugar, this can be extreme and crippling
- Dairy gives me a really bad stomach and I think makes me feel tired
- Caffeine does pretty much the same as sugar, but never reaches the same intensity of pain levels
I haven't had dairy since New Year's eve and have noticed a dramatic reduction in my stomach problems. However, as a result of being so 'strict' with that, I've been a bit more slack in the coffee and natural (I gave up refined sugar last year) sugar areas, such as honey, maple syrup and coconut sugar. I know from research, that a lot of these are digested in the same way as refined sugar, which would explain why, even though my reaction to these sugars are much better than what they were if I ate refined sugar, I'm still getting a dull throb to sharp pain on a continual basis. I've had a lot of stress recently, so have been making black bean brownies, date filled smoothies and eating lots of raw chocolate. I'm not condemning these treats! I'm all for a bit of sweetness in life, it's my favourite, but I've noticed for me at the stage my endo is in (pre-op), eating these things every few days or every day is not helping my condition and I'd prefer to stick to the weekend as treat days.
The first time I stopped seeing sugar as something I needed to cut out or down on because of more than just my waistline, was when I watched Fed Up. Fed Up really hit home to me the impact that sugar had on my body and I began understanding why I reacted the way I did to it and the significant affects it was having on my health. After that, I was able to cut out refined sugar and these days I genuinely can't bring myself to eat a Dairy Milk! That Sugar Film and Jamie Oliver's Sugar Rush have strengthened my views around sugar and have educated me further, so if you're struggling to cut down on the sugar, but know it's impacting on your pain levels or flare up rate, I really recommend watching these!
Each image on the post links through to where you can watch the film/doc. You can also find Fed Up and That Sugar Film on Netflix.
I hope these are useful watches and support you on your journey to managing endo!