Hole moses! Day 29 of the vegan challenge. It’s basically over. Tomorrow I go shopping for my juice feast materials (I will take pictures!). I don’t think I’ve officially said this on the blog, but we’ve decided to remain vegan at home. We’re committed to cooking vegan meals. When we go out to eat, we will be vegetarian OR vegan. It can be very challenging to eat out while vegan, and we thought this was a realistic plan. Of course if there is a great vegan option I will probably get it. But if there isn’t, then I will go vegetarian. We only eat out once a week at most as it is, and lately we high-tail it over to the Fiction Kitchen anyways which has amazing vegan options.
But before this challenge wraps up, I have one interesting thing to share with you – my lovely eczema.
About five years ago I was diagnoised with adult onset eczema. There is no history of eczema in my family, and I had never had it before. My dermatologist said it was likely due to stress. At the time, I was under a lot of stress at work. I got a handle on it, and the eczema went away. It has come and gone since, but it is usually due to either: (a) stress or (b) a need to take extra magensium. So I can usually get a handle on it and get it to go away almost as soon as it pops up.
I had a very mild flare up near the championships in October/November. That made sense to me as I was anxious about it. The flare up was hardly noticeable.
However, during my vegan challenge I had a massive flare up. It’s on my right and left lges near my ankles. It looks ok outside of class, but you should see what it looks like when I leave the hot room! It’s all bright red and irritated. It often itches during class. I try not to scratch.
On Thursday I saw my amazing acupuncturist and showed him my problems. I explained I was not stressed out and taking magnesium had not helped. He asked me about dietary changes, and I told him about the vegan challenge. He thought it was possible that I was having a reaction based on my diet. He was not saying a vegan diet causes eczema. He was suggesting that the diet could have created some stress for me and also that I may be detoxing off of animal prodicts.
It’s true I have been stressed out by the diet. I cried on Day 10. I had lots of crappy yoga classes that led to me feeling unhappy. I was feeling stressed about what to make for dinner. There were times I was more focused on what I couldn’t have than what I could have. So yeah, maybe I was a bit more stressed than I had realized. Maybe I was detoxing a bit. Anyways, he thought my upcoming juice feast might help clear it up.
He did a treatment centered on my condition, and this is where it got interesting. So yes, of course he put needles in me. The needles did not go anywhere that interesting (at least for an acupunture treatment). After he got the needles in, he took out this tiny little hammer that was all wrapped up in a sterile package. This little hammer had needles in it. He explained that the idea was to whack the needles onto my spots (which are tender). There’s a whole rationale for why this is a good idea. I did not retain that information. My response was this:
Me: Fine. How much is the hammer? I’ll buy it.
Him: No. I can’t sell it to you. There’s a technique to doing it. You don’t just start whacking yourself.
Me: Fine. You do it then.
So he did. And at first it felt uncomfortable, and then strange, and by the end it was relaxing in a very odd sort of way.
I had this appointment at 4:00 in the afternoon. At 7:00 that evening I was explaining to Mark what had happened. I looked down at my spots and discovered that they looked better! Some of them looked waaaayyyy better. Today they look better still. It is crazy silly.
Anyways, my body is likely stressed from the dietary changes, and also mentally/emotionally stressed from the dietary changes as well. Being a vegan is hard! It is so very hard. But I do think it is so very worth it. This has been a good 29 days.