My Lactose Intolerance Journey

Hi everyone!

Today’s blog is a little bit different to my usual blog- I am going to be talking about my lactose intolerance!

What is a lactose intolerance?

  • It basically means that my body does not like as much dairy as other people. But I think it’s important to highlight that there are different levels of lactose intolerance. I am pretty lucky and my intolerance is pretty minor. That basically means that if I have a cup of tea with normal cows milk in, or maybe a cheeky slice of cake on a day out, I won’t necessarily have stomach cramps. So my body can deal with a small amount of dairy.
  • dairy-freeHowever, if I pig out and have a heap of dairy- I get the worst stomach cramps. The longer I have had this intolerance though, the more I have been able to judge how much dairy I can have.

When did I realise I was lactose intolerant?

  • There was a bit of a journey to figuring out what was going on and why I was having stomach cramps- but we got there eventually.
  • Period Pains- I first started getting cramps when I was about 13 or 14, at which point my Doctor’s were putting it down to my time of the month. I started my period when I was 12, so I had had some time to figure out what was ‘normal’ for me, and these pains were different. My stomach cramps are like stabbing pains that make me want to curl into a ball- not a constant ache like periods.
  • Appendicitis- I started passing out when I was 14 from the pains and I can honestly say it was mortifying. So after this happened a few times and started to be super embarrassing, I was taken to hospital to have some tests and I stayed over night. The tests came back negative.
  • Gall Bladder- they then tested me for problems with my Gall Bladder. I can’t really recall much about the tests, it all sort of merges into one in my head- but long story short they came back negative too. So yay for my appendix and gall bladder working!
  • Celiacs Disease– this was a quick test, but luckily this was negative too. The Doctors were basically ruling out different illnesses and allergies.
  • Gluten Intolerance- IBS– for YEARS I was convinced, and was diagnosed, with Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Though originally this made a difference Lactose free stampand the pains died down, it wasn’t a long term fix. I completely changed my diet to be Gluten Free- which is surprisingly easy as loads of supermarkets accommodate for this diet. But the pains came back.
  • Dairy Intolerance- BINGO. By 18 I was still having the stomach cramps and I was getting pretty irritated. I ended up not knowing what to eat and what not to eat. At the same time my sister was told she was dairy intolerant, and so my family changed our diets again to accommodate  her. This meant lacto-free products- and the cramps started to die down. Though I was eating less dairy, I hadn’t completely cut it out of my diet. At this point I was about to go to University and my Mum suggested, with me shopping for only myself, to try a completely dairy free diet. That was that really, I went to University, bought only dairy free products and my cramps have been so much better!

Now I eat a mostly dairy free diet and occasionally have some dairy if I really have no alternative (or the food, usually cake, just looks too good!).

I know this is slightly different from my typical lifestyle blogs, but if you enjoy reading, or would like to know more about my diet let me know in the comments. Please like and subscribe!

20 Life Lessons, learnt in 20 years.

  1. Money does not equal happiness.
  2. Saying no is OK.
  3. Empowered women, empower other women.
  4. Stand up for what you believe in- always.
  5. Don’t compare your life to others.
  6. Surround yourself with those that love you and make you feel worthy.
  7. Giving will make you happier.
  8. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.
  9. Nobody is in charge of your happiness but you.
  10. Paying someone a compliment can make their day.
  11. Avoid negative people.
  12. Be honest.
  13. Admit to your mistakes- don’t let them define you.
  14. Family comes first.
  15. People come and go, enjoy every second.
  16. Be yourself- you’re one of a kind.
  17. The grass is always greener on the other side.
  18. Open your arms to change, but don’t let go of your values.
  19. Life’s greatest lessons are usually learned at the worst times and from the worst mistakes.
  20. Having dark days simply makes the bright days brighter.

Top 8: Things I am looking forward to this Summer

It’s officially Summer! That means BBQ’s, beach days, bikinis and knobbly bobblies!

This is just a little post to discuss the things I am most excited about this coming Summer. There is something about Summer that makes everyone seem happier. Life just seems to have more of a buzz to it. Plus it’s friggin beautiful this time of year. If you’ve visited my blog before (hello, old friends!) then you’ll know I LOVE living by the beach. If not (welcome!)- it’s my favourite place in the whole world. So Summer, to me, revolves a large amount around the salty aired, chip smelling, seagull full seaside of the South Coast of England.

So here we go, the Top Ten Things I am excited for this Summer:

  1. A Cruise around the Baltics
  • 3 weeks! I am so excited to go. I have never been on a cruise, but from what I hear it’s food, trips, food, relaxation and more food. Which is funnily enough right up my street (me being a big old foodie anyway!) My Grandparents always try and come back the same, or less in weight by walking round the cruise ship frequently throughout the cruise. And by that I mean they do laps. When I first heard this I thought it was a bit excessive, but having discussed it with others- the cruise ship food sounds dangerously appealing! For the sake of my 8th aim for the summer (getting fit and healthy)- I may adopt this habit in the hope of coming back the same size!
  1. My Mini French Break
  • After my cruise (ooh sounds rather fancy written down J), I have a little bit of a manic switch around, where I am getting on the vomit comet from Portsmouth to Cherbourg the next day to join my family in France. This I am absolutely buzzed for.
  • Every other year we go away with my family to lovely houses in France, and this year I am missing a large chunk due to being on a cruise. This is sadly the consequences of growing up, being an adult forces you to make crappy decisions. (Obviously I am aware that of all crappy decisions, choosing between and a cruise and beach side holiday in France is a pretty decent one!).
  • So I will spend a few days in France, hopefully doing what we do best. That’s playing cricket, drinking wine, singing loudly to songs from 30 years ago, competitive playing of cards for pure pride of winning and taking it in turns to cook a meal (MasterChef style). Along with pretending to be fluent in French, treating the Carrefour as a day trip and roasting marshmallows on the BBQ.
  1. Getting my Puppy (a Goldendoodle)
  • We have literally been talking about getting another dog for years, but its finally happening! We are bringing our little afro ball of pure blonde fluff home after our holiday. I am so excited to see how she gets along with Jim, to buy all her PINK things, choose new toys and have a dog that fetches! Jim is a border terrier, and lordy he is a sweetie… though retrieving has never been his thing. He’s more of a throw the toy for me, I’ll chase it and then rip it to shreds kind-of-guy. I’m also super buzzed to have puppy cuddles. Eek, even thinking about it I cannot wait!IMG_3207
  1. Moving into my new Flat in Leamington
  • I think this next (and final- omg help me) year of University could be the best. I am going to be living with my best friends, in a little flat in Royal Leamington Spa. Besides the obvious living with my best friends and literally having a bestie sleep over every night, I am excited for all the little things. A clean home (hopefully!), candles, car sharing, movies in eachothers beds, getting ready for nights out with each other, eating meals together and being able to walk to the room next door when I realise (as I do every 5 minutes with my history degree) that I don’t know what I’m doing. It’s just going to be FAB.
  1. Decorating my home room
  • I recently decorated my room, a soft pink and I cant wait to add some final touches. At the moment I am OBSESSED with flamingos and I am constantly on Not On the Highstreet looking at inspiration. I love all things flamingo, cactus, pineapple and fluffy. So I’m having a field day searching for things to add to my room. I am getting some new shelves and a new bed.
  1. Our London Get-Away
  • For Jack’s birthday I bought him a trip to London and I have several ideas (no concrete plans yet- which I actually find more exciting!). One at the top of my list is Sketch- a centre for food, art and music. Every so often a new artist is allowed to totally revamp the restaurant, to recreate it in their own way. And OMG it looks insane. I’ll insert some pictures because hell-to-the-yeah I am going there.sketch 2sketch loosketch
  1. Days by the Beach
  • Need I say more. I love it. I drag Jack there all the time. We go to the arcade, we eat ice cream and we walk for miles chatting about what ifs.IMG_2850
  1. Getting fit and healthy
  • Membership- yep. Have I been much- nope. Need to work on the last bit, but baby steps! I have felt so much better being at home, with regards to my diet. I just feel that when I’m exam stress free I eat better. So getting fit and healthy is something I’m super excited about.

Exams and Plans – with a side of Goose Drama!

Hi everyone!

Once again- I’ve been drowning in University work recently, but hey- it’s not for much longer and I have already submitted 50% of my Second Year!

I never know if this is of interest to anyone, so feel free to skip this bit! But here are my essay titles for the modules I have chosen to do this year. Each essay is 4,500 words and altogether it makes up half of my second year grade 🙂

  1. How did attitudes towards exercise and women’s health change between 1880- 1920? (Module: From Cradle to Grave: Health, Medicine and Society in Modern Britain)
  2. How did Nicholas II try to legitimise his rule and why did he fail? (Module: Nation and Memory in Russia, Poland and Ukraine, 1800-Present)
  3. Why were Radical Politics and Radical Religion so appealing in the period between 1630-1660? (Module: Social History of England, 1500-1700)

If I’m honest it was a bit like this:

submitting an essay

But they are gone! I can do nothing about it so now I am non-stop revising. I am currently in a revision break actually! All the seminars and lectures are done, and so have found an empty lecture theatre and are working in it. We have been here since 6pm  and I have done a fair amount, so I am allowing myself to do some blogging- which I love doing and have really missed. But this summer is going to be so much fun and I have so many plans, and lots to blog about.

I am going on a Cruise around the Baltic with Jack- which is going to be great (but money-wise: completely crippling!), I am looking at raising some money through selling cakes (which I will most definitely be blogging about and sharing my favourite recipes- I love, love, love to bake!), I have organised a weekend away to London for Jack’s birthday and I am doing self-defense classes with my sister. These are just a few of my plans and I know it’s going to be one of the best summers EVER.

That’s basically  my motivation at the moment. Once I’ve finished my exams (19th June) I am free!

The Past Week: 

In the last 7 days I have been mostly revising- thrilling stuff! And spending time on campus. I don’t know if this is a problem specific to Warwick, but it seems like you either have to get up mega early, or there are NO seats. Which is not good. I mean, a seat is central to revision, let’s face it.

So I’ve been on campus nice and early nabbing those seats.

Despite the last few days being , cloudy, wet and windy, campus has been really pretty recently. I’ll put a few photos in here:

As you can see, there have been ducklings running around too! They’re completely adorable. However, the geese are INSANE. They’re mega sassy at the moment. So we take pictures from afar, hence the quality of the picture of the duckling. There is so much more to this story and I am going to post about these crazy swans and geese that have actually made it to the news!

I also drink a lot of tea at the moment. A lot.

Most of the time I do this drinking of tea in the campus tea room Curiositea:

love those big armchairs so much! They’re right in the corner of the tea room, tucked away. While I was finishing my final essay last week, I ended up wondering how many other people have sat in this chair. I mean look at it- clearly a lot! But I was thinking, I was sat in the chair, casually freaking out about a deadline. But I’ve been to Curiositea probably more than anywhere else on campus and it’s been to catch up at the start of a year with my friends, or to have lunch, to celebrate a deadline being completed, I’ve sat with my family in Curiositea and I’ve said goodbye at the end of the year there. Weirdly enough, I found it kind of comforting that the chair might have witnessed hundreds of people (not butts- that’s weird) being mega stressed out.

Today 

Today was really rainy. And miserable, but super productive! And I even took some pictures of campus and my boots!

 

I really hope to keep the blogging to weekly! And I promise I will be uploading far more regularly over the summer!