On June 15, 2009 the way I prepare food for my family had come to a screeching halt. I finally found a doctor that could give me some answers and give me some solutions about why things were beginning to snow ball with my 9 year old, Zakkery. Dr. B. is a chiropractor, who specializes in nutrition and homeopathic remedies for his patients.
Zakkery is 9 and for all of his life he has had gut issues. Constipation and the likes. He's big on bread, waffles, pancakes, french toast, fries, bread, donuts, bagels & bread. Did I say bread? You get the idea. His pediatrician would only offer up laxatives, over the counter kind. Zakkery was guzzling the root beer kind for kids. It worked. But really should someone live on laxatives, especially at such a young age. I stopped giving those to him and just allowed nature to take it's course when need be. It wasn't very often. 3rd grade happens and I'm told by his Social Studies teacher that he might have a learning disability, but nobody wants to test him. I come to the conclusion from talking to school staff and professionals that it's too much paper work. It's just me now, I figure I'm all this child has. I'm his advocate and I will do what I can to help this child out. 3rd grade was tough, I had heard it was tough, so I was prepared, somewhat. He got decent grades. I wasn't 100% happy with the support from the school, but that was okay, I was determined to do my part and that I did.
I came across this doctor through some girlfriends who had nothing but raves about Dr. B. One day while talking to a girlfriend, I realized, he might be able to help my Zak. The moment I got home, I called and made and appointment. It was the Monday after school was out. When I made the call and the receptionist was taking down my information, she asked why I was bringing him in. GULP! He has been having gut issues FOREVER and also there are some learning disabilities that are starting to surface and I am looking for answers. When that came out of my mouth, I thought for sure that this didn't make sense and I just sounded so dumb. I needed to hang up with this kind lady and do some serious research in addition to what I had already done.
I hung up the phone and Googled "is constipation and learning disabilities linked together". To my surprise they were. I couldn't wait to get to the office for Zak's 1 1/2 hour consultation. I wanted to know what he was going to say. In all my 2 weeks of reading online, not once did I come across the culprit to Zak's problems. A sensitivity/allergy to wheat. Okey dokey. Now what? During the consultation he tested his muscles. More on that in a minute. He told me that he is stressed due to the food diet that he is one. I could agree with that, but I thought that was just his personality, a bit uptight in other words. Other physical signs that Zakkery had was colic as a baby, eczema, bloated stomach, & weak muscles in his left leg when tested by the doctor. So the doctor recommended a wheat free diet. Sounded easy enough. I didn't really think about what that really meant until I got home and started my research from great sources on line. He also gave Zakkery some supplements. One is cod liver oil, orange flavor. Zakkery drinks it like a champ! There's so many great benefits to that. He's also on a probiotic due to him being on so many antibiotics as an infant/toddler/child with ear infections. And a supplement for his adrenal gland.
My initial reaction to this visit was relief! I had some answers that held hope! I was so ready for this wheat free diet thing until I realized what it actually was. To put it simply if it has wheat he can't have it. So that's pasta, pizza, bread, donuts, bagels and so on. Take a glance at your food labels. Turn to the ingredients. Look for "wheat" in the ingredients. Scan down further and see if it also says in bold print, "contains wheat". That's what he can't have.
I was recommended by a girlfriend to read "Gluten Free for Dummies". I have read it from cover to cover and have highlighted in between. I also have the "Gluten Free Shopping Guide" that was recommended from another girlfriend. This is a great book because it lists "real food" that doesn't have the wheat or gluten.
Gluten is a protein substance that remains when starch is removed from cereal grains; gives cohesiveness to dough. So if it has gluten is probably has wheat. There is a spectrum for wheat and gluten. You can be on the left side and have a wheat sensitivity or you can be on the far right and have celiacs disease. Wherever an individual is on the spectrum, you can't have wheat at all.
Onto the Muscle Testing. I don't understand it all, nor am I going to try to explain it because I won't do it justice. But there is going to be a lecture on it in a few weeks at the doctors office. So I have signed up and I plan on attending. I will take good notes too.
Next post, I will write about the 3 weeks of being wheat free/gluten free and the follow up visit that Zakkery had with Dr. B.