Roll up for the magical medical mystery tour

It’s an interesting journey I’m on here at the moment. I’ve got the joint stuff happening… the ‘most likely it’s arthritis’ thing. The thrice daily doses of Panadol Osteo have taken the edge of it, but not really stopped it. It’s been still a bit random. I wake up in the morning wondering “Hey body, what part is going to be the worst today?”, but my left wrist has been the most recalcitrant. The right shoulder has still been letting me know it’s not done with the whole pain thing. And in the past week my right elbow decided to get in on the act. (Up till then, the elbows had abstained but I guess it’s the whole peer pressure thing.) The knees have, on the whole, been surprisingly well behaved. (Touch wood).

When I talk to people they express surprise that it hasn’t been diagnosed with pathology. I can’t help but wonder the same thing. And I have to admit I’m not entirely happy about just popping pills ad infinitum, yet I’m wussy enough to be quite happy with that aforementioned edge taken off the pain I’d originally experienced. So I take them religiously.

And of course you start hearing the ‘tips’.  Apple cider vinegar is one. (In warm water with honey – because it tastes pretty disgusting.)  Does wonders apparently. I’ve heard that through two sources now. Worth a try? I bought a $2 bottle of the vinegar (then read on the internet that it’s supposed to be organic and unfiltered.  Duh.) Then the original friend said her mum (who swears by it) used the normal stuff.  I tried it once, and it was disgusting. Couldn’t bring myself to drink it.

I did start wondering whether to go out and buy a magnetic underlay for the bed. Or some of those magnetic bands. Anything?

And then, of course I did the Woe is Me, ‘I’m only 47, and I planned to be paddling canoe marathons when I’m 60, so it can’t possibly be arthritis, not yet!’ thing. Himself won’t cope with having me not able to be active… Etc etc. (And then of course I reminded myself about how many other people out there are so much worse off, so I slapped myself about the head on behalf of all those people.

On Sunday we were having a slothful, telly on in the daytime kind of day, and there happened to be a health/lifestyle programme on.  [Aside: I particularly enjoyed the segment where the doctor presenter guy had electrodes put on him stimulating labour contractions, and he ended up not coping and telling all the men ‘out there’ that they have no idea what their wives deal with! Like, women win hands down on the coping with pain debate. ]

But, more relevantly, there was a piece about arthritis. And the big tip was to avoid TOMATOES.. Specifically the skin and seeds. Because of the acid.   And white flour.

Himself and I look at each other. We eat heaps of tomatoes. (I love tomatoes.)  I also eat white flour in every bloody thing too.

The reporter advised avoiding both.  Himself looks over at me, and suggests it’s worth a go. Which of course made me rather depressed. Because I’m uber spoilt, and haven’t had to deal with any food allergies whatsoever, so giving up these things on spec is all rather.. well, yes, depressing to me.

I pondered on it some more over the next 24 hours, and I decided that maybe if I tackled one thing at a time it’d be easier. So… tomatoes.  They suggested you could peel them and de-seed them. I tried that for the salad on Monday night, and decided that was a pain in the butt. And that I may as well just avoid tomatoes altogether. For a while.

And  hoped that the tinned tomatoes I’d already planned to use in a pasta sauce for Tuesday night  didn’t count.

Yesterday my wrist didn’t hurt so much. Today the elbow has been pretty good. And the shoulder feels almost normal.

Pretty strong anecdotal evidence already?  Hmmm.


In the meantime I’ve also had three nights of no wine – in an unrelated campaign. The ‘must stop drinking empty bloody calories every bloody night because you’ve put on so much bloody weight it’s bloody depressing’ campaign. Which, let me tell you, is no mean feat, because I’ve become pathetically addicted to the dire need to have a glass of wine as a crutch to get me through the cooking of dinner….

So, I don’t exactly have the scientific experimental controls in place here….


I went to my first introductory one-on-one Pilates session on Tuesday, and despite hardly seeming to do anything, other than struggle with tightening the pelvic floor muscles to “30%” as a basis for all exercises (which, yes, is as bizarre as it sounds) I came out of there feeling strangely “good”.

So. I don’t know. Tomatoes? Wine? Finding Pilates?  All I know is that today my joints have felt almost normal.  (She says touching wood…)

Or was it not really arthritis, and just a bout of some mystery ‘whatever’ that has now decided to magically go away of it’s own accord?

And how long before I can eat tomatoes again?



Filed under it's just another manic mum day, wah!

7 responses to “Roll up for the magical medical mystery tour

  1. glucosamine and chondroitin/ That’s what my doctor recommended. I have arthritis all over, and since Motrin (ibuprofen, don’t know what you’d call it there) is on the Forbidden list…oh well.
    exercising, I don’t know that it will make it GO AWAY but apparently it will keep it from getting worse. When I was doing water aerobics, I definitely was looser and in alot less pain.

  2. Wendy

    I don’t know Tracey but it sounds like you could be onto something. I’ve heard all this before too, but you just have to find what works for you. Unfortunately I too am the firm believer in one (or two) glasses of the white stuff whilst cooking dinner….. but I am starting to think it’s getting to be too much of a *habit*. A naturopath told me that if you’re going to have wine it is better with food than without. Good luck sorting it all … but it does sound like something of those 3 things is working.

  3. Arthritis and gout are inter-related to be almost the same critter; avoid alcohol as much as possible with both seems to be the new thinking.
    Apple cider vinegar will flush any toxins causing aches, pains and *credit card statements from your system.
    Bi carb of soda will neutralise acids in ‘matoes if you can’t/don’t want to avoid them for any reason.
    White flour is the bane of everyone’s life….except it now comes with thiamine.
    Pilates and any kind of gentle exercise is good for anything that ails you.
    *Credit card statements will also be found in empty wine racks, behind the porcelain telephone and in the bottom of the vegie crisper 😉

  4. Interestingly, eliminating tomatoes and wine, and adding exercise are similar to the advice my rheumatologist gave me about my fibomyalgia. I am 31 and have bouts of joint pain that seem to “move around” — anything from a finger joint one day to a shoulder the next. From what I understand, a lot of the joint inflammatory diseases work the same in terms of things that can help. Two other important things that have worked for me is that it really helps that I make sure to get a full 8 glasses of water each day and I’ve eliminated aspartame. (I truly miss my Diet Coke, but it seems to have helped.)

    So now that I’ve dispensed a bunch of unwanted information and advice (sorry if I offended!) — I just want to say I’m sorry you are feeling unwell and let you know that I commiserate. It isn’t fun to hurt.

  5. All great info guys…. thanks! It helps to share around experiences I reckon. Some interesting stuff there. The moving around of the joint pain thing, Rachel… hmmm, sounds very familiar. I do drink a fair bit of water (moreso when I’m trying not to pour a glass of wine), and I’ve never liked Diet Coke, so I’m right there (except for the increased incidence of middle of the night loo visits!!

    How do you neutralise the acid in the tomatoes with the bicarb Jayne?!

    Wendy, we have so many similarities!! (So, eat as well as drink while you’re cooking the dinner then?!)

    Interestingly at the same time as all this I’ve been forgetting to take the glucosamine tabs!! (Felt like I was rattling, as I’m also on long term antibiotics after visiting skin specialist to do something about red patches on my face…!! )

  6. Where does the 63km tandem bike ride fit in with all this? Before the good day or the achey one?

    I (or my sister) probably offered you the honey and vinegar cure our mum used (1/2 and 1/2 stored in the fridge – use as a cordial in water) – she just used Cornwalls because they didn’t push the namby pamby organic stuff in our neck of the woods in the early 80s – and she also cut out all wheat products.

    Good luck with it – I think it is a play around and find out what works for you. V swears by the glucosamine.

  7. I am very interested in what you have to say about using ‘joint stuff’. That’s illegal, you know… 😉

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