Monday, April 25, 2011

How Can You Tell if Your Pancreas is Flaring Up?

inflamed pancreasThe health of my pancreas is always on my mind. Recovering from a pancreatic flare up can be a difficult task both on the body and the emotions.

Here are some of the ways I try to prevent flare-ups. I don't eat rich foods anymore. Chocolate is pretty much out since about a no chocolate pancreatitisyear ago when a triple-layer double death German Chocolate Cake pretty much set the ball rolling for a pancreatic crisis that lasted a couple of months and from which it took several months for me to regain the weight.

I can feel when my pancreas begins to swell. I know if I've had one too many too much coffee pancreatitiscups of coffee or if I need to lay off the steak a bit, or simply switch to smaller slices - the easiest way, for me, is to just buy smaller pieces of meat. Can't eat what isn't on the plate.

Stress can take a hard toll on my pancreas. I try to keep things that cause stress out of my life. Nothing is such a big deal that I need to die over it. Nothing. When I get stressed out my pancreas becomes more volatile and more sensitive to foods. Generally if this happens, I will eat less but perhaps up my intake of teas, broths and perhaps baby food and tapioca baby food pancreatitispudding or simply a spoonful of honey and a few potato chips. It is important to have enough potassium or you could run into problems with your kidney and heart. Yes, I learned this the hard way. Heart failure would be the big problem. But a decent amount of potassium seems to do the trick!

no food pancreatitisSometimes, I need to stay off food for days on end. When I'm feeling this bad I'm usually more than willing to stay away from food since I know how bad it can hurt, how long it can take for me to recover and the very real threat that I may not recover at all. That being said, my body cannot due without potassium for that long so ensuring enough potassium enters my body is absolutely essential. Mango Juice (just an ounce or so a couple times a day is probably okay. If it hurts, STOP), dried apricots (eat a half or one, or one, or two... whatever feels comfortable. Dried apricots are very high in potassium so a little will be helpful. Who would have thought that tomato sauce could be such an incredible source of potassium. Buy the plain cheap stuff rice cakes pancreatitiswithout any sugar or spices.) and tomato sauce (have a spoonful! Maybe another spoonful in a few hours if the first spoonful was okay) both have high levels of potassium. Remember that it can take an hour or an hour and a half before your pancreas feels the effects of whatever it is you just ingested, so take it easy. Take it slow.

Don't drink alcohol. Alcohol can set off a pancreatic attack. It can kill you. Don't mess around with it. If you really want to drink then you are most likely an alcoholic. No problem. Just accept no alcohol pancreasit, get help for it... and don't drink today! I hear some people go to Alcoholic Anonymous when they have a problem with drinking... or not drinking. You could always try that. It's free, available and all over the world. I bet if you called them right now someone would be able to answer any questions you might have!

If you're in the midst of a flare up... I'm so sorry you are going through this. Take it easy. Rest. Sleep. Back off on the food and anything that is hurting your pancreas - like stressful situations. It takes a while. Patience is essential. Sometimes months of patience... but hey, it beats the alternative!

1 comment:

  1. I recognized that my urgency of having a bowel movement increased during the prior week. The one morning I had a bowel movement and noticed the appearance to be quite slimish. I'm not trying to be funny, but there was a fatty greasy appearance to it. I was quite puzzled by it considering the fiber and more solid food I had eaten the night before.