I am fine, according to the doctor. I needn’t have submitted myself to the horrors of collecting a ‘faecal sample’, or (worse) letting the nurse touch my arm vein.
Of course it’s a good thing I don’t have inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). But I can’t help feeling slightly short changed. It took three separate appointments to establish that I am in fact fine. The doctor could have at least made something up to make my time worthwhile.
I don’t know what I was hoping for. Certainly not a disease. Just an answer, some kind of solution. Perhaps the doctor would say – ‘here’s the magic potion that will get rid of your pains and unpredictable bowel movements and help you shift that impossible weight from your tummy too.’
Apparently my stomach aches and bowel problems are, as previously suspected, down to irritable bowel syndrome. It’s something I, like millions out there, have got to just put up with.
The doctor suggested things like eating oats and flax seeds (which I already do most mornings) and I just nodded along, knowing that he was just reeling off the same old generic advice to get me out the door.
I could do more rigorous testing on myself. I could eliminate certain foods to see what triggers it. I could keep an IBS diary. I could take a cocktail of overpriced supplements from Holland and Barrett. But I know I won’t. I’m just not that sort of person. I’m more of a put up with it sort of person. Bloody diarrhoea? No worries.
On the subject of food – I’m still doing the 90 day shift, shape and sustain plan by the Bodycoach. I’m supposed to be on the second cycle of the diet but after the first one ended I bumped into the freezer section at Tesco and ended up with a 4-pack of Classic Magnums, which turned into a week of not watching what I ate. I didn’t exactly pig out but I didn’t exactly hold back when it came to being offered a scone and clotted cream in a park (a very middle class park), and a slice of walnut cake at the Sky Garden in London (which is really cool by the way) on Sunday.
To cut a long story short (I should have cut it shorter sooner), I am now doing another week of cycle 1 to make up for my slip-ups last week. I’ve stopped losing weight or inches though. My body is so stubborn. Magnums are so nice.