Saturday, November 9, 2013

In great news: Arcade Fire!

I feel like my 20-something year old, music-obsessed fan self again.  Can't get enough Arcade Fire.  Now, the other three albums rock, no lie--each one is fabulous.  And as this fourth came out, I wondered if they could keep it up?  Yowzah, they can.  Whoop!  They shine live so here's a taste:
The thing that just gets me over and over is how versatile each member of the band is--how many instruments they play, their rolls in writing, recording and producing music, their vast array of odd past training that makes them who they are.  You have all "sorts" of student artists among them (film, contemporary dance, orchestra, literature, religion), and they end up a great indie rock band.  There's amazing fusion in their work.  I think synthesis is one of my greatest joys in the arts (and really anything) so when Regine pulls out a hurdy gurdy I just get excited.  When the bassist becomes the drummer or a violinist switches to keyboards, I get excited.

Their video for Reflektor (the title track) is pretty interesting given all those thoughtful lyrics.

And they've been doing SNL appearances too.

If you haven't had the pleasure of the former work, check out some of their live shows:

Food Allergies, Wow

I found out Oct 30th that I'd have to drastically change my diet if I wanted to deal with a host of problems that seem to pop up.  Psoriasis was my main reason for seeing my naturopath, but I do still get heartburn and other issues here and there.  Because those digestive things pale in comparison with a former ulcer and diseased gall bladder, I never thought much of them.  It's like when I was told I needed stitches for a cut on my knee that I considered a "scratch" (since compared to child birthing, it didn't do much to me).

So I'm sensitive to wheat/gluten, dairy and tomatoes.  There goes a lot of the foods I traditionally enjoy and eat (which could explain becoming sensitive to them as allergies go).  For ten days, I have avoided them faithfully.  Tonight I unwittingly wound up with some since we ate out (and you just can't trust people to make sure unless you deal with managers/owners and threaten 911, ha!).  My otherwise-safe salmon was marinated in a tomato-pepper vinaigrette which I didn't realize until the end of my meal.

So, my entire abdomen is swollen, my nasal stuff is swollen and I can now tell I'm reacting to something.  I've been feeling so good for the last ten days or so that I now have something decent to compare the reactions to.  Wow.  I feel horrible, and I wouldn't have noticed this before now.

I'm also avoiding all sugars, carbs and even fruit for the month to get my candida under control.  I'm pretty sure that balsamic vinaigrette had some sugar (even though it was homemade).  I did ask the waitress, but I'm starting to feel like you have to be such a proactive advocate for your health EVERYWHERE that it's almost easier to bring your own stuff to restaurants or just not eat out.

Avoiding these foods means I have to be very intentional and creative about my meals.  But it also means I'm getting great nutrition, like it or not, and that I'm beyond those cravings I used to get.  It's quite wonderful.  I really do just eat a meal and move on--I feel full until I actually need to replenish.  I don't have the lulls, needs, snacks etc.  So I actually don't plan to reintroduce the sensitive foods one by one anytime soon.

I also wonder if gluten is partly to blame tonight since they make so many pizzas in the restaurant we went to?  My wheat sensitivity is likely the strongest given its connection to autoimmune disorders like my psoriasis.  Seven in ten people are gluten sensitive at least and have no idea.  Only severe celiac folks really know and come to grips usually since the testing has been poor.  When I was tested a year or two ago, you had to be in a state where your villi are so beaten down and essentially gone for it to show up.  More recently, they're working on tests now that show sensitivities earlier on so we can potentially avoid that level of danger and illness.  Naturopaths have their own tests, though, if you trust them (which I do given research I've already seen long ahead about their methods--otherwise, I probably would've thought mine was doing quackery).

There is a great book on food allergies called "The Virgin Diet" by JJ Virgin. Of course you have to have "diet" in the content to sell books, but her book and other body of work are great for isolating where offending foods are hidden and then possible substitutions for things you like and would miss by eliminating typical allergens.  My friend, Lindsay Wilson, does a 21-day program of elimination to help people's health in general.  Wheat Belly is another great book (that I've already mentioned here) on the subject of gluten.  Dr. Tom O'Bryan is doing a free Gluten Summit this next week where he interviews the top doctors and researchers on the topic.