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Monday, July 10, 2006

My Ear Hurts, It Must Be My Low-Carb Diet


If you hurt, then it MUST be caused by your low-carb diet, right?

Today has been one long, painful day for me. A couple of days ago, I noticed my ear started irritating me with an annoyingly persistent pain that has gotten progressively worse. I cleaned out my ears with hydrogen peroxide, flushed them with this blue bulb in an ear wax cleaning kit and even put alcohol in them to help kill whatever it is that got in my ears to make them hurt.

Since I use a headset at work to talk on the telephone with customers, this made my ear hurt even more. To give you an idea of how bad I was hurting, I took my lunch break which is usually reserved for working out at the YMCA and I drove home to clean out my ears with the peroxide/flushing/alcohol treatment...AGAIN to see if they would feel any better. I also did something else I don't like to do and that's taking some medicine to feel better. One of my coworkers gave me a couple of ibuprofen and I took them hoping they would help reduce the inflammation in my ear.

Whatever did the trick, the pain has begun to subside somewhat. But I can still feel the pressure and pain every time I move my jaw and we'll definitely monitor this the next couple of days to see if I need to go to the doctor about it or not. One thing's for sure, I won't be sleeping on that ear tonight! :-O

Why did I bring this up? Well, you're never gonna believe what somebody said to me about my earache. This person knows I am livin' la vida low-carb and smugly proclaimed that my ear pain "probably has something to do with that low-carb diet you're on." HUH?! Are you kidding me? What the blankity-blank does my diet have to do with my ear hurting?

But you know what, I'm glad this came up because it is something I've been meaning to address for a long time. Isn't it interesting how every little pain or problem that your body goes through ever since you've been on the low-carb lifestyle is now under this gigantic microscope for everyone to analyze and examine as evidence of what low-carb does to you? This isn't fair to the low-carb lifestyle, but that's exactly what happens.

Oh, that low-carber has a cold, he must not be eating enough fruits and vegetables to fight it off. Jeepers, you broke a bone in your wrist, your low-carb diet must not be giving you enough calcium. Gosh, your cholesterol is over 200, you really shouldn't eat all that fat. Have you heard any of these kinds of statements before? I'm sure you have and frankly it's quite annoying.

You never hear anyone talk about how the low-fat diet or vegetarian lifestyle causes the physical problems that those people go through, do you? Then why do people blame low-carb for our ailments other than the obvious disdain that so many have for this way of eating? It's a conundrum that will take real people like you and me to just live our lives as examples of what people following this nutritional approach are really like. One-by-one, we can impact those around us...slowly.

We're not some space aliens (well, not all of us!) roaming Earth with our "strange" diet. We are real live human beings who are eating the way our ancestors have been eating for thousands of years. Of course we're gonna have a sniffle here and there as well as the bumps and bruises that come with living life. Yet, those things are not CAUSED by low-carb living. Things happen and that's that. Enough of this nonsense about low-carb being at the root of all of our health problems already!

Do you have a story like my earache being linked to livin' la vida low-carb that you'd like to share? Feel free to click on the comment link below and tell us all about it. I'm sure there are other low-carbers out there who have experienced lamebrained comments like this as well. Oh, do tell.

20 Comments:

Blogger Science4u1959 said...

Yep... for example, the Inuit, these Eskimo's eating a extremely low-carb/high-fat diet since before the dawn of "civilization" as we know it, were all deaf as a doornail... :)

It's really incredible what nonsense some people attribute to low-carb diets - while indeed this is the very diet humanity survived, evolved and grew up on. The "modern" diet, roughly the last 50 years, nutritionally empty but loaded with sugars, starches and other highly refined carbohydrates, is the real abberation here and is based on nothing than pseudo-science, hot air and inflated ego's.

7/10/2006 9:53 PM  
Blogger Mrs. Drobnis said...

Back about 15 years ago, I ate a vegetarian diet. If I got sick someone always said it had to do with not eating meat.

I think it's really any diet/way of eating that someone has stuck to that invites criticism of those who can't/won't improve their own way of eating.

7/10/2006 10:21 PM  
Blogger diamondwife said...

If only the Low-carb critics knew... I eat more dairy and vegetables that I ever did pre-low carb.

7/10/2006 10:31 PM  
Blogger Sandylp said...

A co-worker told me that she had a friend who died while on the low carb diet...and made a lovely corpse.

7/11/2006 12:50 AM  
Blogger Science4u1959 said...

I had several friends that died on the low-fat diet...

7/11/2006 3:09 AM  
Blogger detox said...

As for your ear it was probably the ibuprofen that helped, it does not only reduce the pain but works anti-inflammatory.

You might have an ear infection that needs antibiotics, so I hope you see your doctor soon. Ear infections are definitely no fun at all. I noticed, though, that most people who get recurring ear infections are eating lots of dairy, and if you google for dairy and ear infections a lot of interesting stuff will pop up...

When I got sick on a strict vegetarian diet I was told I wasn't eating enough meat, too, so go figure. If you don't eat like the mainstream does it is always your fault.

7/11/2006 4:01 AM  
Blogger TESS said...

If you have an ear ache go see a doctor quick. An ear infection not treated with antbiotics can go into the inner ear and cause damage. Untreated, an ear infection that goes into the inner ear damages the nerves and the side of your face can droop similar to a stroke. Really and it has nothing at all to do witha a LOW CARB DIET. Aren't people really strange?

7/11/2006 7:59 AM  
Blogger Sierra said...

If your ear hurts and nothing is helping, you might have a bad cavity. Either way, get it checked out. I let my ear infection go in high school because I didn't have health insurance and eventually it ruptured my ear drum and I had 50% hearing loss in my right ear. [I'm a quarter deaf and only 21!]

Oh, and by the way, I love your blog. I just started a low carb diet and the results are pretty awesome. I don't really even want to eat carbs anymore. :)

7/11/2006 9:48 AM  
Blogger Jimmy Moore said...

THANKS, Sierra and everyone. I may have to go to the doctor about this earache. :( I HATE DOCTORS!

7/11/2006 9:57 AM  
Blogger Gary said...

John, it *is* your low-carb diet! If you would only put a warm potato in your ear, you might feel better.

7/11/2006 11:30 AM  
Blogger Gary said...

p.s. Jimmy, don't hate doctors. Just find one who is good and someone you can like. I use a naturopath (N.D.) as well as an M.D. The naturopath is very well trained in nutrition and has been helping me with my low-carb diet and exercise, not fighting on it. When there is something so serious that the naturopath cannot handle it safely or when she feels it's beyond her expertise, she sends me to the M.D. I'm not sure about South Carolina, but in Connecticut, naturopaths must be properly trained according to statute and licensed to provide health services. This is a nice alternatives to doctors, who often don't or can't give you the time for preventive medicine.

7/11/2006 11:35 AM  
Blogger Rob said...

It's not just the detractors too. I can't believe how many times I see messages on low-carb message boards about how "I'm fatigued", or "I have a sore threat", or "I feel naseau", and then ask, "is it because of low/zero carb?".

Maybe I'm just lucky but when I started my diet on 2/23/06 I never had any strange symptoms or anything like that. Maybe it's because I'm more dedicated about my eating but I never had anything bother me much.

The other thing I think happens is that the acculturation is a bitch. People will come up with all sorts of reasons and excuses on why they can't eat low or zero carb. Whatever "physical" symptons they can come up with gives them a mental justification to increase carbs or just go off the diet.

7/11/2006 3:24 PM  
Blogger harmonious1 said...

Hi Jimmy
I had ear pain. My chiropracter found it was TMJ pain and gave me QUICK RELIEF! Please don't jump right on the antibiotic band wagon. That can really mess up your diet! (And your health.) If you go to a regular MD, that's what he or she will probably prescribe, before even doing a culture. Check out other avenues first. It could be your jaw hurting. In my own case it was the jaw, but felt like the ear! Just to be on the safe side, I never stick anything in there (the ear), and put in 50/50 vinegar and alcohol drops every day. That's just what I do, not recommending it for anyone else!
Thanks for your blogulatory efforts!

7/12/2006 10:36 AM  
Blogger harmonious1 said...

My friend went to the MD for ear ache, and was given antibiotics. That resulted in tinnitus. We thought she was going to have a nervous breakdown from lack of sleep. It turned out the antibiotic prescribed was "oto-toxic" in nature. Neither the doctor nor the pharmacist let her in on this fact nor what it meant. She is still having this. Nothing helps. If you have to get anti-biotics, check to make sure they are not "oto-toxic".

7/12/2006 10:41 AM  
Blogger The Princess Mom said...

Putting drops in or irrigating your outer ear is not going to do anything for a common ear infection. A true ear infection, otitis media, is in the middle ear, behind the ear drum. Unless you have a hole in your ear drum, anything you put in the ear canal can't reach there. You can't culture it, either.

Otoh, an bacterial/fungal infection of the ear canal, like swimmer's ear, can be helped/prevented by using ear drops.

7/12/2006 10:48 AM  
Blogger Jimmy Moore said...

My ear is feeling better today. THANKS for everyone's concern and remedies. I REALLY appreciate it!

7/12/2006 11:19 AM  
Blogger Shirley said...

I was told by an uncle that I had diabetes because I was a vegetarian. He thought all I ate was potatoes, pasta and bread!

Hope your ear clears up soon.

7/12/2006 2:49 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

Your ear trouble is much more likely to be caused by staph germs on your head set. I experienced similar problems when I worked in a call center. I'd advise anyone who uses a shared computer or headset in their work environment, to keep a supply of anti-bacterial wipes on hand, and wipe down the keyboard and the surfaces of the headset religiously, every day.

7/12/2006 3:21 PM  
Blogger rob said...

go to http://www.pillfreenutrition.com/ or some other health food store and get coloidal silver. coloidal is a natural anti biotic and a few drops a day will get rid of the problem.

7/12/2006 11:01 PM  
Blogger Jimmy Moore said...

Again, THANK YOU everyone for your help. My ear is much better now and I didn't need to go see the evil, maniacal doctor. :)

7/13/2006 8:09 AM  

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