Update: Damn These Hands

A few weeks ago I mentioned that I have carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) and that I have been battling it for about 13 years. I also mentioned that I was going to engage in a little self-experimentation to try to isolate the triggers of this debilitating ailment, the first being dairy (whose reintroduction was suspected of causing an earlier flareup). Well, I am happy to conclude that I have found that it was definitely the dairy that was increasing the prevalence of symptoms.

During this experiment the tendency of overuse of the muscles of the wrist and hand were increased, as I increased my playing of guitar and drums, and my work (which is physical in nature) was steered toward more heavy use of the hands. So, while the other triggers increased, the outlier (dairy) was eliminated entirely. Within a week the numbness of my fingers began to subside and nighttime flareups disappeared entirely. However, what really sealed the deal (that the cause was dairy) was that when I had dinner at my mother’s house last weekend, she served a salad that had mozzarella cheese included. This allowed me the opportunity not only to not offend my mother, but to also allow a small reintroduction of dairy to further substantiate my conclusion.

That small reintroduction of dairy resulted in a flareup of symptoms the following night, as well as having no feeling (other than tingling) in the fingers of my left hand for a few days thereafter. However, since it was only a small dose of casein and it was a solitary instance, these symptoms disappeared within 3 days.

Conclusion: 1) Casein (the protein of dairy foods) causes an autoimmune response that leads to inflammation in those who are sensitive to casein. 2) I am sensitive to casein. 3) Those with CTS should investigate whether their CTS symptoms are exacerbated by ingestion of casein.

On a side note, but still related, gluten is a protein that is very similar to casein, so it also makes sense to investigate the role of gluten in causing inflammatory symptoms to arise. Since I had already eliminated all gluten-containing foods prior, it was not a factor in this particular experiment.

Note: the rest of my diet during this two-week experiment was a reproduction of the two weeks prior to the experiment (when symptoms increased) thanks to Fitday.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Diet, Food, Health

One Comment on “Update: Damn These Hands”


  1. uh oh guess you were right


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