"You're going to be that girl with the water bottle" said Dr. C to me today. I'd just been given the diagnosis of Meniere's disease and a new diet plan to prevent water retention (which causes ear troubles). My doctor wanted to make sure that I clearly understood the importance of the direction "aggressive hydration" from treatment paperwork. Drink water endlessly. He wants me to always have a water bottle in my hand.
It seems that this Meniere's is going to be a blessing, and by the time it clears, I will be healthy and set in a schedule. I need to eat a very low sodium diet, under 2,000 mg per day. That's not much at all. Some foods just loaded with sodium are cheese, tomato sauce, soup. Butter. Everything fried. Pretzels, bagels. The list goes on. While I can eat those foods in moderation, I need to be very aware of everything that I am eating. For a girl who prefers salty over sweet, this is a bit challenging. I like a good challenge.
Apparently, I am also going to be the girl who reads labels. And the one who always orders off the menu, and begs the waitress to tell the chef not to add salt.
The doctor's very first question to me after taking my medical history was, "Are you under stress right now?" Stress is a common cause for the onset of Meniere's, as is salt (again, causes water retention). I need to manage my stress. For me, that means going back to yoga, and staying consistent with my acupuncture.
In a nutshell, the treatment is a short course of steroids, six months of a diuretic, and a super healthy diet and lifestyle. Smaller portions of my killer chili, naked tacos, and finding new ways to make salty foods taste great without salt. Expect some new recipes soon and feel free to share yours with me.
I never was a cornflake girl.