Quote for October

A Prayer for the Ephesians Eph. 3:14-21

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom His whole family in heaven derives its name. I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge--that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Diet and Coconut Water Makes a Difference

For more than a month I have been feeling stronger and able to do more things. I think much of it is because of how I am eating. 

First of all, I have been drinking a big glass of coconut water every day which is full of potassium. About 12 ounces, sometimes more. I like the coconut water, and it delays the drinking of my daily Diet Coke.

I began drinking coconut water casually at the suggestion of a cousin during the heat of summer. I began to pursue it at the suggestion of the only other carcinoid patient I have met. We were both in the waiting room at the cancer center, and as soon as she began to talk about her case, I thought it sounded like carcinoid. I told her I had carcinoid and we talked up a storm! She suggested the water because of the potassium. 

In September I began drinking coconut water every day, and I am convinced the potassium is what helped me get my strength back. I also did a little advocating at my local grocery store to carry Kern's plain coconut water. They had been stocking only the chocolate variety for a few weeks, and I kept going home empty-handed. Now I noticed the store has increased the space for the product since they began to carry only the plain variety. It is considered a health drink, so I think more people would prefer it to be plain.

As far as foods, I have continued avoiding things on the list of products high in TYRAMINE and high in SEROTONIN precursors. To avoid making serotonin, it seems we have to avoid TRYPTOPHAN. Please do some reading about this, because I am not an expert. However, I have done pretty well at avoiding "bad" foods in restaurants and at home. The difficulty came when I went to a party with wonderful food and I had no idea what had gone into its preparation. 

To avoid making lots of serotonin, AVOID eating: TURKEY, CHICKEN, PAPAYA, MANGO, SWEET POTATO, CASHEWS, ALMONDS, ALMOST ALL NUTS, COTTAGE CHEESE AND MILK. This is a short list taken from an interview on Carcinoid.org.  

SEROTONIN is the chemical our tumors cause to be made in large quantities that causes diarrhea, so obviously we want to avoid making lots of serotonin.  I have not found that I have a big reaction to eating chicken, but I did have some diarrhea after eating a turkey dinner. I only ate a small amount of turkey (3 oz.) so I wasn't very sick.

TYRAMINE is an amino acid that goes into making the bio-active compounds that make us sick.To avoid TYRAMINE, decrease these foods: CURED MEATS (HAM, HOT DOGS, PEPPERONI); FERMENTED or AGED or PICKLED FOODS; OVERLY OLD FOOD; TAP BEER; AGED CHEESES; SOY SAUCE; SAUERKRAUT; TOFU; BOUILLON, SAUCES and GRAVY.

As food ages the amount of tyramine in it increases. Therefore, one nutritionist suggests we freeze meat on the first day that we buy it unless we are going to eat it that day. Eat fresh produce within 48 hours of purchase. I have not been able to make all these changes yet, but I got my husband to freeze most of our meat. He likes to buy in large quantities and then keep his options open. I am the one who uses the microwave to thaw meat; he just leaves the meat in the refrigerator.  

When I go out to a restaurant, I have had good success with ordering fish and chips or a steak and avoiding dishes made with cheese. The only cheeses I know of that aren't aged are American cheese and Jack cheese. So I need to keep a list of aged cheeses in my purse. However, at a party I had a less pleasant outcome because everything seemed to have cheese or a variety of ingredients in it. Afterwards, I realized that I need to have an eating plan before I go to a party. 

So far my plan to to load up my plate with any fresh fruit or salad that doesn't have cheese in it, eat some plain bread, and choose a simple meat. That's a little hard to do because many cooks soak meat in bouillon or a marinade containing soy sauce. The last luncheon I attended, I ate two types of salad, bread and cake. I didn't get sick, so it worked out OK.
I need to realize the food I eat at the party doesn't have to sustain me forever, and I can eat a little before I even leave home.
Good luck with eating well!