A.S. Face 0467: Stephanie Taylor Stewart

My name is Stephanie Taylor Stewart, and I am 44.  I was diagnosed with Sjogren’s and AS (with a little fibromyalgia thrown in) in May 2011.  After getting over the relief that I wasn’t crazy and just really depressed (which is what my friends kept telling me was wrong with me) and educating myself about AS, I can trace my AS symptoms back to 1994.  I have a terrific rheumatologist and am on meds (Celebrex and Enbrel).  I started a strict anti-inflammatory diet about 3 months ago, and it truly has been a miracle for me.  (http://www.toquietinflammation.com/). It is not easy at first, and I resisted it for a long time (who wants to give up all the “good stuff” when you are already suffering from chronic pain???). However, once I decided to try it, the pay-offs have been immense.  I can tell within an hour if I have eaten something that “feeds” the inflammation–my SI joints get very sore and hot.  Staying off all ALL sugar and sweeteners (fresh fruit is okay), gluten and dairy seems to be the ticket for me.  I have regained my energy, enthusiasm and am cycling hard again–and even dropped some weight. Here is a pic of me from a recent ride that my husband and I did (climbing 2400′ in 5 miles).  I share this not to tell others what they should do, but rather to let folks know that it has been so helpful to me and provide a resource in case they want to try it. 🙂

Thanks for doing this project!  It is so terrific that you are helping to raise awareness about this painful disease that I had never even heard of until being diagnosed.
Best regards,
Washington United States of America

7 Responses to “A.S. Face 0467: Stephanie Taylor Stewart”

  1. Hey Stephanie, You go girl! You are a total inspiration!!

    I am right there with you on eating an anti-inflammatory diet! I am doing awesome and staying pain free by eating tons of raw fruits, veggies, leafy greens, sprouted nuts & seeds. I also eat some wild caught fish & a little grass fed beef. (But absolutely NO Gluten/Grains, NO Dairy, & NO White Sugar.) Most days I hardly notice my AS by eating this way, and it took quite a few months of being strict before I finally noticed a HUGE difference!

    I also have a secret weapon that another AS’er told me about, and I know swear by it too. It’s high concentrate curcumin, a natural extract from turmeric, it’s an amazing anti-inflammatory & TNF blocker. I ordered it here: http://turmeric-curcumin.com/ It totally calms down my AS & Colitis. I love this stuff, I take it everyday! It is more effective than NSAIDS, without all the bad side effects.

    I also write a blog with anti-inflammatory starch free diet recipes: http://bettyrawker.com/

    Thanks for posting your story!!!

    • Very cool, Andrea. I briefly checked out your site, and I will be back for more! Thank you for sharing!!!!

  2. Welcome to the gang!!!!!

  3. Thank you for your story and the link.

  4. Welcome to the group! You are certainly an inspiration, and I loved that you shared what works for you! I, too, will be on Enbrel very soon, as the Methotrexate stopped working for me. Good to hear that it is working for you. I plan on reading the link you provided to see if it will help me. Thanks again!

    Stephania, Face #445

    • Stephania, I checked out your story and I hope the Enbrel works for you. I think it definitely is part of the equation for me. If you get on the Enbrel Support Program, they wil help cover the co-pays. I also think the anti-inflammatory diet is a huge part of the solution. Eating that way is the ONLY thing that has completely gotten rid of the pain. It is a big commitment, but the pay-off is so rewarding. Good luck and stay strong!

  5. Dear Stephanie,
    Thank you so much for sharing your story with us.
    Sincerely Cookie

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