Leicester

Woman is free of rice diet after 12 years of allergies

Micaela Stafford
Image caption Ms Stafford survived on a drab diet of brown and white rice for three years

A former caterer who survived on meals of rice after developing acute food allergies 12 years ago said her diet was finally changing for the better.

Micaela Stafford, from Normanton-on-Soar in Leicestershire, said the pain caused by her intolerances had left her desperate and "wanting to die".

With help from a nutritionist the 53-year-old is now gradually widening her diet, and already feeling the benefits.

"I just feel like [she] has given me my life back," she said.

Ms Stafford said doctors had been unable to understand what was causing her migraines and sickness.

"I just felt that anything else made me feel so poorly and in a desperate, desperate struggle to try and have any quality of life whatsoever I lived on rice," she said.

After reading about her story in the national press, nutritionist Diana Earnshaw contacted Ms Stafford to offer her help.

"She put me on this diet and said things were going to get an awful lot worse before they got better," she said.

Her new regime was kicked off with two days of eating nothing but a clear chicken broth.

Now, 20 days into the programme, Ms Stafford is able to eat an omelette for breakfast, chicken and vegetable soup for lunch and lamb chops for dinner.

"The most amazing thing that I have been able to tolerate is eggs. I have not eaten eggs for 12 years and eggs were sending me wappy," she said.

"If I had an egg, I was so poorly afterwards. I'd have this terrible headache and hallucinations - I did weird things on eggs."

Ms Stafford is enjoying rediscovering favourite flavours and her returning health.

"It sounds horrible, but my thoughts were I wanted to die, because the pain was so horrendous and the suffering was so unbearable," she said.

"Now I'm suddenly thinking, 'Wow, I think I've got my life back - is this real?'"

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