The three years before I 'went paleo' I experienced a few (5) episodes of dizziness caused by inner ear inflammation. Typically: one day really bad, next day a lot better, next day gone (or almost). Couldn't find a cause.
Since going paleo, I have not experienced them again, except for last week. This time it was quite a minor episode and it took only one day to recover. And hey, two days before I ate two slices of bread (which was a long time ago). I don't want to be fooled by randomness, but I've got the feeling this was not a coincidence.
I first thought about the link between food and my problem after foundings this site. Apparently, as a child, I had quite a lot of ear infections. This research report (pdf) talks about the relation of allergy and inner ear infection. Though I never had any known allergy.
I did a little quick research
But I'm no otologist. Anyone with some other input?
I'm also interested in personal stories. Anyone with a similar experience? Both with recurrent ear infections or dizziness and the influence of a paleo diet?
PS my mom has the same symptoms, but less episodic. Hope this will change her ideas on paleo...
asked byPieter_D (10299)
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on May 16, 2010
at 02:58 AM
I had two episodes of dizziness (where I felt really off balance but not exactly as though I'd fall over), each a week to a week and a half in duration, over two years ago. Both episodes were in the winter and followed bad colds. They also coincided with a sudden change in work environment, in which I was spending 40 hours per week in the crossfire of some considerable electromagnetic radiation (multiple wifi networks, over a hundred active computers, cell phones all over the place, plus power strips often within an arm's reach). I ate mostly pasta, pizza, fast food, breakfast cereals, supermarket milk, and similar crap at that time, slept poorly, spent very little time outdoors, and got sick often. I can never know for sure what the precise cause was, but I suspect it was the interaction of all these factors. I do know those weeks of dizziness remain among the scariest days of my life, and on a long-term positive note, were the initial catalysts to a long, drawn out wake-up call that finally led to my decision to eliminate all processed foods cold turkey last summer.
I don't recall having many ear infections as a child, and I never experienced the dizziness again after the second episode--even as I continued to eat processed grains and get sick for over a year following--but I wouldn't be surprised if there's some relationship among these things. However, the easier explanation is simply that any illness is the result of a bad diet, lifestyle, and/or environment. I can't think of a single illness whose cause that fails to accurately (though of course not precisely) account for. If your diet's good, then scrutinize your environment (home, neighborhood, work). If your environment's good, then question your diet (Am I eating enough organ meats? chemical-free? too much protein? digesting well? etc.). And, as you've done, pay close attention when you have a recurrence of old symptoms. There's an answer in there somewhere.