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Travels to South Africa on the SCD Diet

Hello All,lion from south africa business trip

Just wanted to keep you posted on my crazy life!elephant in south africa
Two days before my trip to South Africa I was experiencing some serious anxiety! My colitis was acting up and I started seeing some blood, I was still having solid bms but the blood was worrying me. After a particularly stressful day, I decided it would be nice to take a jacuzzi bath in my basement! So I put some epsom salts in and relaxed for half an hour in the tub. When I got out I was feeling very dizzy and thirsty. I asked my mom for a glass of water and was going upstairs to my room to lay down! Next thing I know, My parents are around me telling me we have to get to the hospital. Turns out I fainted, fell and split my forehead open! 8 stitches later, I looked like Frankenstein just in time for Halloween!
They say things always happen at the wrong time, this couldnt have been more true! I was pretty upset bout it, but it could have been worse. Two days later I left to South Africa for my business trip.

South Africa is a beautiful place, although I was working most of the time, I still have evenings and weekends to enjoy the country! I got to see alot of interesting places, things and wild animals! Elephants, Giraffes, Hippos, Rhinos etc! It was amazing! I also visited the Indian Ocean in Durban as well as the World Cup Stadium! I got to watch a Rugby game for the first time! It was a fun time overall!

Obviously being away from home and being on SCD was not easy! I would say that I followed the diet 98% of the time while I was away. I ate alot of red meat, chicken and a lot of vegetables, especially butternut squash! There were some things I ate that I wasn’t sure about for example curry sauces. I ate those in moderation. I also had a couple of drinks for the first time in 4 months! Alot of wine! South Africa is known for their wine. I always drank DRY wine since it is legal on SCD. The wine seemed to sit well and didnt give me any problems the next day. I also had some vodka with soda water. The days after the Vodka were not so pleasant, gassy, bloated and D with blood and mucus. I think I will stay away from Vodka from now on. Its just not worth it.

Well I am both happy and sad to be back. I had a great trip and great memories. My colitis behaved well until my last day in South Africa when I started having D with blood and mucus. The journey home was not fun, I was very uncomfortable on the plane. I am hoping this flare I am experiencing is just temporary and may be from the illegals I ingested over the past 2 weeks. I am pretty upset bout all of this and it is stressing me out! I know I need to remain calm and have faith that continuing on the SCD will eventually heal me.

I am going back to basics with the SCD diet. I will be making the chicken broth soup to eat tomorrow and only easy to digest, cooked veggies. Hopefully with this plan I will be back to solid stools without blood in no time! Flare be gone! Keeping the positive thoughts flowing!

Wish me luck!




9 Responses to Travels to South Africa on the SCD Diet

  1. Adam
    Adam November 9, 2010 at 11:12 pm #

    Hey Jessica, wow, that is a major double wammy between the free Halloween costume, and the colitis bump in the road. I’m super proud of you for wanting to buckle down and get out of the flare the way you are choosing. That’s pretty cool. You and me together right now, so lets keep eachother motivated to wack this stuff asap. Those photos are super super awesome, do you work for discovery channel or something? Sure looks like it.
    Keep us posted on how it goes with busting out of this flare. Let’s have a friendly race to see who can get back on track the quickest. A mini North America World cup of SCD.
    thanks so much again for writting in your story. You rock!

  2. Steven Wright November 10, 2010 at 12:13 pm #

    Jessica – Those photos are sweet! I’m pretty jealous of your South Africa trip sounds like an amazing country! I’m really happy that you did your best while on the trip to stay SCD legal but didn’t let your diet keep you from experiencing the country.

    I’m sorry to hear about your forehead and current flair, hang in there, that positive attitude goes along way. Remember other things in our lives can influence our digestion and diseases. So all the stress of the hospital and anxiety of the trip could have had just as much to do with your flare as the 2% illegals you ate.

    It will get better lots of sleep! easy SCD foods! and a positive attitude and you will get through this.

  3. Sunworshipper November 10, 2010 at 3:00 pm #

    I don’t know if this is the place to post this, but this story just made me think of something. Having to do with flares and eating illegals after being on strict SCD for a long time.

    You would think that being on SCD for so long you have starved out all the “bad” bacteria completely, right? So, why, then if we eat an “illegal” does it cause a flare, or symptoms. If there are no longer any “bad” bacteria in the gut to ingest the leftover illegals that make it to the colon, then make their own waste that causes the immune response that causes the symptoms? Are all the “bad” bacteria completely gone, or are there trace amounts and no way to get rid of them ALL?

    I wonder…

    • Adam
      Adam November 10, 2010 at 3:35 pm #

      Excellent question Sunworshipper,
      my understanding is that its you are right. Not all the “bad” bacteria is eliminated.
      Just most of it. So, its like a big fire at first that turns into a tiny fire, but it has the potential to grow into a big fire again(the bad bacteria) if the right food comes into play.
      But its even more complicated than that. The reality is our microbial gut communities are always changing- constantly. So no two days are exactly the same for the gut bacterias((of which there are many many many different strains inside each of us). Anyways, different combination of good and bad bacteria are actually necessary. It all just comes down to the population amounts of each good or bad bacteria.
      Heres an idea to think about: Over evolution, hunters-gathererers etc… had to go long times without food just to survive right…
      Well, the scientists have found that the bacteria in the gut didn’t just die off completely during a 2 week fasting. It actually survived. Maybe not all of it, but often quite a bit made it through no food periods. Its not understood how exactly, but it made it. So, that for me at least kinda paints the picture on why flares are able to pop up from time to time. Also, bacteria can actually feed on things in our gut like mucous and some other bodily food/fluids etc…

      Anyways, all good stuff that came about from the meetings with the gut bacteria scientist. Have you watched all the gut bacteria videos on the site?

      • Sunworshipper November 11, 2010 at 7:00 am #

        I figured as much, but thought I’d pose the question anyway. I think I watched all the videos you posted, I may have missed one, but tried to watch them as you posted them. That is really great info!

  4. Reid Bryant Kimball November 10, 2010 at 4:08 pm #

    Jessica, this is exactly what I experienced during my 2 week trip earlier in October. It was very hard to stay on SCD because the local restaurants were not high quality and all the food was pre-prepared in marinades and spices. On my last day of the trip everything went to hell. I was nervous about the plane flight home from east coast to west coast (USA) but luckily starving myself did the trick. If nothing in, nothing out. When I got home, I started on the intro SCD, eating a lot of chicken soup broth and 48 hrs later had to first bowel movement (yes, it took that long) and it was solid!

    Here’s hoping a quick recovery for you.

    I’ve always wanted to travel but have been afraid because of my diet restrictions. Some people tell me traveling to less developed parts of the world would be easier to find the foods I need, like Bali in Indonesia for example should be easy to get fresh meat and vegetables.

  5. Reid Bryant Kimball November 10, 2010 at 4:13 pm #

    Speaking of gut bacteria, research MAP, Mycobacterium Avium subspecies paraTuberculosis. Your mind will be blown. And yes, they say it’s extremely hard to get rid of for good.

    • Sunworshipper November 11, 2010 at 9:17 am #

      Wow! That’s crazy. I used to ALWAYS drink milk, all the time. I love milk, and milk products. Not nymore, now that I’m SCD, but I do eat the home-made yogurt.

      I wonder if that had something to do with my IBD? And, the thing is, it seems, even if they find out that you have it, there are only some people that respond to antibiotic treatment, so it really doesn’t matter to know if that’s how you got your IBD or not, at least that’s how I’m reading it. I mean, is there a simple test they can do to see if you have it?

      It’s crazy how the bacteria survives the pastuerisation process though, and I guess the government knows bout it, and doesn’t plan on doing anything about it either.

      Crazy!

  6. Christina December 3, 2010 at 10:32 am #

    Jessica-First, I am very, very jealous of your trip to Africa. I have always wanted to go there. The lion picture is so cool. And second, yes, we are twins! How funny that we both find ourselves with head wounds, a cold AND bloody stools! My oh my, what will be next? In all truth, though, I’d rather be twins with your Africa trip than your forehead ;)

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