But first, a little backstory. There seems to be almost as many variants of M.E. as there are people suffering from it. My own particular brand of hell, for the past 30 years, has meant that I crash in the afternoons and, since the mid 90s, that crash, I figured out, is inextricably linked to food. If I ate lunch, I’d be, at best, semi-conscious for the next 4 or 5 hours.
So I stopped eating lunch.
I’d given up on breakfast years before, so ever since I’ve had just one meal a day. For me, that’s worked very well, though the last couple of years I’ve had to devise high-protein recipes to cope with my Lymphoedema (now back in full flow). That’s because the leaking lymphatic fluid is very high in protein, and the loss has to be compensated for. That’s why most of my recipes now feature soya beans. Which can be omitted if you wish, but they are a valuable addition to any diet in terms of fibre as well as protein.
Recently, as I mentioned in Getting my life back – Part 637 a sudden craving for a breakfast of tomato soup shone light into my darkness – that day, for the first time in months, I didn’t crash or even flag – I got a full day to play with.
Since then, a can for breakfast sets me up for the day – no crash, no flagging (well, OK, there’s some flagging some days, but I’m still functional). I have no idea why that happens, but as it also happens with homemade tomato soup the benefits must be in the tomatoes, rge only ingredient the two versions have in common. It’s really not worth making my own, though, as Heinz’ is usually on offer – as it is now, 3 cans for £2 – and I’ve just had a dozen cans delivered in my grocery order. Cans are easier to store too as home-made takes up a lot of freezer space.
Getting back to the why of it, the only beneficial substance in tomato soup that I’m aware of is Lycopene, which has anti-carcinogenic properties. It’s also, I’ve just found out, absorbed by the adrenal glands. Since mine are shot to hell (Addison’s Disease), that might possibly account for the boost I get. Or not. I really have no idea.
All I do know – and all that’s important – is that it’s given me back a sizeable chunk of my life, and for that I’m grateful.