Sunday, March 15, 2015

IBS plus fibromyalgia equals vitamin deficiencies; get your calcium

Would you pay $8 for something called Juce that was billed as cold-pressed organic juice but really was Fun Dip mixed with water? You would think we could tell the difference but not everyone can as you can see in the Jimmy Kimmel video link above. Many consumers rely on labeling to help them choose healthy foods over less healthy ones. But sometimes we get duped.

The same can be said of health care. Sometimes we get duped. I recently read that doctors have been prescribing CT scans (fancy x rays that give 3-D images) when patients come in with chest pain. These scans are no better than traditional tests, cost more and expose patients to the amount of radiation in 500-700 regular X rays. Doctors have used these scans for a decade without knowing whether they were better than traditional tests. They definitely didn't explain to patients how much radiation exposure they were getting.

In the past,  I have relied on my health care practitioners to give me the best information possible on my health problems. If they missed something, I excused them by saying they were overworked or busy. But I'm having a hard time excusing them for missing that individuals with IBS probably also suffer from malabsorption of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin D and calcium.

It seems obvious that if you are having trouble digesting your food, you probably aren't getting what your body needs.  Unfortunately, there are many health conditions linked to IBS and malabsorption of vitamins and minerals. Individuals with fibromyalgia often have many vitamin deficiences and of course, IBS. 

Recently, when I fractured my wrist in a bike accident, I was told that I may be suffering from low bone density. I was upset by this news but even more upset (okay, angry) when I found out that individuals with IBS or other gut problems have a significant increased risk of osteoporosis and bone fractures. In another study, IBS patients had lower bone mineral density values and higher bone loss than healthy volunteers.

Why wasn't I told about this link before I fractured my wrist? Sure, I might have broken my wrist anyway. But at least, I could have started taking something to build my bones sooner.

IBS plus fibromyalgia equals vitamin deficiencies. That's why these days I take lots of vitamin supplements even though I eat a healthy diet, including 3+ servings of calcium-rich (lactose-free) yogurt and kefir every day.

Here's one way to build your bones. Carry a backpack and pull a sled through the snow to a yurt for an overnight trip.

The Yurt
Here's another way to add to your calcium intake for the day. Try a Shamrock Shake for St. Patrick's Day.
Low fermentation Shamrock Shake
Here's what you need FOR 2-3 SERVINGS:

 2-3 cups of plain yogurt (I make my own lactose-free)
stevia, to taste
pinch of salt
1/4 cup fresh spinach
1 bag of peppermint tea
1/2 cup milk of choice
2 T. water
1 T. Great Lakes gelatin
As an option: use 1/4 tsp. peppermint extract and 1/2 cup milk of choice and omit the tea bag

Here's what you do:

Heat 1/2 cup of milk of your choice until hot, not boiling. Divide the milk between two cups as shown above. Place your peppermint tea bag in one cup and allow it to steep. To the other cup, add gelatin dissolved in 2 T. cold water. Stir to mix and allow to set until somewhat firm. Now, mix everything together in a high-speed blender. Taste and adjust sweetener. Add more peppermint if desired.

Enjoy a serving of your Shamrock Shake.

Use the rest to make Shamrock Frozen Yogurt. Freeze the remainder in your ice cream freezer according to directions. Store in the freezer to enjoy for another serving of calcium.

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Buba4Turtle said...

I had vitamin deficiencies, but then found ways to get it in my body without upsetting my stomach. My stomach is like a picky eating toddler. My stomach issues have improved, but it's still a learning technique for me. Thanks for sharing your Shamrock shake! I like spinach and shakes.

I found your post at Fibro Fridays at the Fibro Bloggers Directory.

Sheree Welshimer said...

Glad you found my post and sharing about your vitamin deficiencies. Now, I know how to describe my stomach too---picky and it lets me know if it doesn't approve of something I've eaten.