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I feel I am a living embodiment of the power of the starch free diet.
I started having AS symptoms when I was 19. By 27, I was basically crippled. I was really struggling to find any joy in life. I could no longer easily even get to work (getting out of bed, into the car was bringing me to tears), sports were gone, and I couldn't even work on my project Jeep anymore.
I got really desperate and started looking at diets. I had never heard of the gut-connection to AS, and I had just been told to take aleve (8x per day!) by my doctor, and to do physical therapy. Both of these helped, but eventually, they lost their effectiveness as well.
I started the low-starch diet based on Carol Sinclair's book. I found it when searching on Amazon for AS diet books. It worked great at first and then the pain returned after around a month. I then realized I needed to cut way down on sugar. That worked great for a while too, and then the pain returned. After more research on the Klebsiella Bacteria, I realized that I must still have been feeding it somehow, and that for some reason I was more sensitive that others.
I am now on a zero-starch, very low sugar diet. I don't eat fruits, or anything with large amounts of natural sugar (even broccoli has sugar, but not enough to bother me), and I completely avoid anything with starch, or that may contain starch. I also cut out any source of casein protein (cheese was also triggering my symptoms, and even very low sugar cheeses). Reading about casein protein sensitivity here led me to cut this out.
It took me 6 months to really "figure out" this diet, and now I've been on it for 2 full years. I would say that my pain is 95% gone.
Initially, on the diet, I used to still have a lot of pains when I would participate in high impact exercise, sports. My physical therapist suspected my L5 disc was leaking onto my sciatic nerve root, wreaking havoc on my muscles and nerves. Things like skiing would send my back muscles into spasm and cripple me.
I feel like I have significantly repaired a lot of the damage that may have been caused by AS, though I've never had an MRI (Doctors told me it was unlikely to change my treatment plan, and that it would only make sense with late-progression of the disease)
I feel that I have now 100% restored my mobility and ability to participate in activities I once thought I'd never be able to do again. This diet really gave me my life back and I am extremely thankful for all of the research that was done on this topic that led me to find this relief!
Also, this is essentially a body-builder's diet, and I'm now also in the best shape in my life. I consume a lot of fats and proteins, and for a while was testing myself regularly for ketones, so what I'm doing is definitely keeping me in ketosis.