Sunday 25 February 2024

Weird health histories

 Despite being reassured by the London allergy clinics, with whom I spent a lot of time in the early 1990s and in 2014-16, that I have no known allergies, I have had some sort of streaming nose and sore eyes for nearly a fortnight. I am not sure why. Antihistamines are helping and the last couple of days have been better. But I suspect that, as with my killer eczema, it's probably due to my immune system being underemployed and attacking innocuous things or overreacting to something. This is one reason why there seems to be so much more hay fever, allergies, asthma and rashes these days than there used to be in the days when our bodies had to fight off plague, parasites and pox. As one consultant said, "There's no allergy that a good tapeworm wouldn't cure!"

Now, I'm sure a good tapeworm would also help me slim a lot faster, too! My old school science teacher, who was always one for telling weird stories, said that around the turn of the twentieth century, ladies who were struggling with their wasp-waist corsetry could swallow a 'slimming pill' that was, in fact, a tapeworm egg. Once their little guest had helped them reach their desired weight, they would swallow the magic 'stop' pill, which was some antidote or worming tablet, and end their decline. I can't be bothered to check how true this tale is but I can say that I don't propose to go to the dubious-looking late-night kebab van to get a free sample of tapeworm with my purchase to help me either slim faster or get over whatever this allergic reaction is.

Anyway, I'm happy to report that, although my weight loss has lessened a bit recently (since I did need a bit of a break from the full-on slimming programme), I have lost 10.5 kg or 23 pounds to date. Nearly half of what I wanted to lose on November 1st has gone, and my healthy weight range is in sight. Ideally I'll be at target by the end of April, although that's a challenge. But if you don't set a challenge then it's too easy to just amble along and not make enough effort. 

Anyway, the next post will be about the positive stuff I've seen and heard in this LGBT history month.

Optimum size


Have a good week.

Sue x


  1. I remember reading about some research into stomach parasites, where the scientists were looking into why that helped reduce IBS and immune related symptoms in the gut. Not something for the squeamish, but hopefully they find something that might help people.

    Good job and luck with the continued weight loss. Hopefully this is setting you up with diet changes to keep the pounds off.

    If you can find a good weather app for your address, that might list what pollens are out at the mo.

    1. Thanks, Lynn.

      I know that, with just one exception, I have no pollen allergies, so I suspect it's to do with my spring cleaning efforts. I'm a lot better this week.

      In just four months, I've made huge changes to how and what I eat, and even want to eat. This is all for the good. All that sugar in one form or another is gradually disappearing from my life and I am feeling better for it.

      As for the parasites, you may like to read why maggots are good for healing wounds! Or maybe you wouldn't! But, yes, we used to live with endless bugs on us and in us and now we eliminate them and our immune system that evolved over millions of years to combat these things has nothing to do. But combat it must so it attacks anything even vaguely dubious.

      Sue x

    2. Perhaps dust and/or cleaning chemicals, then? BTW, as an asthmatic, if you need to assassinate me, just pop round and run the Hoover round with some Shake N Vac. Ah, that was a fun evening! 😁

      FWIW, Mrs J was saying that making actual changes to your diet is key, rather that dieting. She has a bit of a grumble about diet fads and 'sin' themed diet groups. On listening to her explain the science, I get it.

      Beginning mostly veggie has helped me. That and alcohol free beer. Funny you should mention sugar, that craving seems to dropped off a bit. Well, apart from fancy chocolate in small doses 🙂

    3. Shake 'n' Vac, now that takes me back! (Hey, that rhymes; maybe it was part of the song! ... Yes, I'm not sure what it is that's triggered this but it's bugging me now.

      I use the healthy eating plan from Slimming World. It always worked for me before. I'm pretty sure that the main fattening thing for me is alcohol, followed by pork products and chocolate. None of which are essential. You can see from my weight loss of ten pounds during Dry January that cutting out wine with meals was the main driver of my success.

      Sue x