March 2017 | KTMY

22 March 2017

Tips for dealing with ostomy odour

Let's be honest, bathroom odours are something we all worry about, whether you have an ostomy or not, but an advantage of having a stoma is that there are a few things you can do to deal with it and put your own mind at rest!

First, let me start my saying that ostomy bags don't smell - no one can actually smell it when you're out and about! I definitely think this is something I worried about at first, but honestly you can't smell it. Stoma bags are actually fitted with filters (I think they're charcoal) to deal with gas and odour so you never smell it (unless you have a bag leak and you can read my tips for them here!). However, the smell worries normally come into play when you're either emptying your bag or if you're doing a full bag change so here are my tips and tricks for dealing with ostomy odour!

Limone Ostomy Deodorant Spray

This spray is a must for anyone with a stoma. It is a simple little deodorant which you spray when you either empty your bag or change it and it completely removes the smell, leaving a fresh lemon sent. What's brilliant about this spray is how it actually does completely remove the smell, rather than covering it up for a while, and its compact size means you can easily keep it in your bag when you're out and about. The spray is available from SecuriCare and CliniMed and you can find out more by ringing SecuriCare (0800 585 125 (new customers) / 0800 318 965 (existing customers)) 

Look at what you're eating

Some foods cause more odour than others and if you are extremely concerned about odour, then you could look at what you're eating (however I don't think you should stop eating foods you like and/or are good for you purely because you're conscious about the smell as there are other options!). Foods which can cause more odour are; 
  • Asparagus
  • Baked Beans
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Cod liver oil
  • Eggs
  • Fish
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Peanut butter
  • Some vitamins
  • Strong cheese
It's also key to note that food effects all ostomates differently and food might not effect your bag the same it effects someone else's! 

Peppermint Oil

Now I haven't actually tried this method myself, however I am quite tempted to try to see how it works. I have read many things about putting a few drops of peppermint oil at the bottom of your bag and it will neutralise the smell from your bag. If you've tried this, let me know how you found it! I'm going to try it soon so I will keep you all posted on how it goes! 

So there are some of my tips for dealing with ostomy odour. Let me know what you think of the post and leave your own tips in the comments below because I'd love to know how you all combat it! 


20 March 2017

Solita's, Manchester

I love finding new places to go and eat in Manchester and when there's an occasion to go out and have a meal (which is basically all the time) so when it was my flatmates birthday we headed to Solita's in the Northern Quarter and had a bit of a feast.

First, let's start with the decor of the place because it is super instagrammable. We were sat in a big booth which had some awesome graffiti style artwork on the walls and then the coolest light sign saying "don't grow up, it's a trap" which is one of my favourite quotes so when I saw it, I got very excited!

Now, on to the food. I had been told that the food here was good however good does not do it justice! The selection of burgers they had was phenomenal, it was so hard to choose, and they had some really interesting starters which were amazing.

We got a selection of starters to go with our mains so there was a lot of food. For starters, we got halloumi bites because halloumi is life and you can never go wrong with it. We also got bacon popcorn (which I didn't eat because I didn't realise it would be actual popcorn but it got a mixed response from the table!) and hamburger spring rolls which are my new favourite thing. They're basically burgers wrapped in spring roll pastry rather than bread and they were one of the best things I've ever had - they were a firm favourite of the group!

For my meal, I ordered the Catalan burger with pizza fries. Lets start with pizza fries because they sounded amazing however I was slightly disappointed with them. They're chips with tomato, cheese and pepperoni however I didn't like the pepperoni on them which was a shame! However, the burger was amazing. The burger had a burger, chorizo, smoky cheese, aioli, grilled red pepper and then a padron pepper on top and it was beautiful; it reminded me of being on holiday in Spain as it was like a load of tapas on a burger and anyone who knows me knows how much I love tapas!

We had such a lovely meal and we all really enjoyed our meals - I genuinely cannot wait to head there again soon and try some more of the food because everything sounded amazing!

Have you headed to Solita's before? If you have, let me know what you thought of it! And don't forget to leave your favourite Manchester restaurants in the comments. 


15 March 2017

High fibre foods & Stomas

I always remember the first few days of having my stoma I was absolutely terrified of eating anything except from soup and ice cream because I was worried about causing blockages and making myself really ill. I had no clue how my stoma would react to food and after being so ill with my Ulcerative Colitis, the thought of eating food which once caused me to flare was equally as terrifying. 

Slowly, I realised that my stoma actually did work and I could eat lots of different foods which I couldn't before - it was just a case of trial and error which still scares me but I now do more and more regularly. 

One of the foods I never thought I'd be able to eat was salad; raw veg used to make me flare badly and I'd read a lot about how many people can't eat it with stomas. For well over a year, I daren't try anything raw incase I got a blockage, especially after I did once eat raw carrot and get a blockage! However recently I started being a bit more adventurous with what I was eating and now I'm ordering salads as an actual meal (which is something I never ever thought I'd do!) 

Tips for eating harder to digest foods

I feel like I should say first that maybe don't try raw veg and high fibre foods straight after surgery because your body is still getting used to this new way of working and your stoma is more prone to blockages as it is still swollen and healing from surgery. 

Chew your food well I am now known for being a very slow eater but I've gotten quite used to it! I make sure I chew all of my food incredibly well so it's easier to digest. Yes, it means you eat longer but it's worth it! 

Drink plenty whilst eating/once you've finished I always make sure I drink water after I've eaten a meal as I'm certain I read somewhere that it helps with digestion. If I've eaten something which is harder to digest, or I'm worried I haven't chewed as well as I should, I'll sometimes have a coke as well as it works wonders for small blockages

Try not to talk too much when eating now this is much easier said than done - anyone who knows me knows I can be a bit of a chatterbox but the downside to this is that you can end up with a lot of trapped wind around your stoma which can take the pleasure out of eating a bit. 

It's really important to note that everyone with stomas, be it colostomies or ileostomies, reacts different to different foods. Some people can't eat raw foods whereas others can eat just about anything. I know that I can't eat whole nuts, mushrooms and sweetcorn and raw carrot however I know some people who can eat all of those! 

If you are going to try and introduce more high fibre foods into your diet, try first in small portions or even just a few mouthfuls and slowly build it up - don't go and order masses of salad or big pieces of meat as a first go. If you are worried, it might be worth talking and getting some advice from your stoma nurses

Leave your tips for eating high fibre foods in the comments below! 


13 March 2017

Having Bloggers Block

You might have noticed that recently there has been a lack of regular blog posts appearing on KTMY and it's for a number of reasons, the main one being I've had serious bloggers block. All the ideas I've had for content didn't seem exciting and I had a serious lack of motivation mixed with a tonne of uni work (namely writing my dissertation) which has left the blog feeling quite neglected.

I started the year off with high hopes and attended the Blogger Bootcamp where I met lots of lovely bloggers and learnt so much about social media, branding and content creation and I was so excited to implement it and then I got into this blogging funk where I wasn't happy at all with how my blog looked and felt.

I took a little break from my blog and you might have noticed on social media, mainly Twitter, I haven't been quite as active as normal and it was just what I needed to get back some of my love and motivation for blogging. The only downside is that my views and engagement have suffered majorly (I know, it's not about the numbers but still) however I'm hoping with this new lease of life things are going to change!

In the next few months, I'm planning on changing KTMY quite a lot, and I'm really excited with what's to come because I love my little blog so much and can't wait to show you what's to come!

Have you ever suffered from bloggers block? What are your tips for overcoming it? 


10 March 2017

Having a Pamper night with the new Body Shop Almond Milk & Honey range

I always used to find that when I'm an IBD flare, when I'm just feeling a tired, and after I came out of hospital I needed to relax. I also felt that it was important to treat myself when my body clearly was not so I love having little pamper nights where I properly exfoliate and moisturise and do a full skincare routine. As well as making myself feel good, it also often meant that I would sleep better as well (normally because I'd tired myself out!).

The Body Shop have recently released a new almond milk and honey range and I was lucky enough to go to one of their events the other week at the Trafford Centre store with two of my blogging friends Meg and Melissa where we got to hear about the range and get to try some of the new products.

The range is for dry and sensitive skin and is their first to be dermatologically tested. My skin can be quite sensitive sometimes and the product which I loved the most was the exfoliator because I really struggle to find one which doesn't react with my skin. I actually bought it after having a hand massage with it and I am amazed by it because it's so gentle on my skin whilst still exfoliating well (and it smells amazing!)

Back when I was on a lot of medication for my colitis my skin could often be quite dry, especially after I came out of hospital and had had a lot of steroids and morphine. I really wish I'd had this range then to help with my dry skin!

My other favourite from the range is the hand cream which I now always carry with me because it's so good! My hands go through weird stages and they can sometimes be incredibly dry however I haven't had this at all in the two weeks I've used it. The whole range smells incredible as well, which is always a bonus, and has made my skin feel really soft and hydrated.

Have you tried the new range from the Body Shop? What are you're pamper night essentials? Let me know in the comments below! 


6 March 2017

3 ways I like to relax & destress

It's getting to that time of the year where I have deadlines and exams coming up and it's fair to say I am feeling pretty stressed right now! If you follow me on instagram you'll be seeing my almost daily posts about writing my dissertation (which I can now say I have a full first draft of!!). Because of the sheer amount of work I've had to do, and most of that I use my mac for, I've been trying to relax by not looking at a screen as much and give my eyes and brain a well earned rest.

Here are my favourite three ways to destress and relax away from a screen... 

Reading - I absolutely adore reading and I haven't done anywhere near as much as I would like to this year so far. There's nothing I love more than curling up with a book and a cup of tea and getting lost in the book for who knows how long! I'm currently reading We Were on a Break and I absolutely love it! Keep your eyes peeled for a review soon on it. 

Drawing & Painting - I used to love drawing and all things art when I was younger until GCSE art where my art teacher basically ruined the whole experience for me. However, recently I've really got back into drawing and watercolours and I'm so excited to keep exploring this love I have because I really enjoy the whole experience. 

Listening to music, podcasts & Talking books - Sometimes, there's nothing I love more than just sitting down and listening to music but sometimes I just not in the mood and when I'm like that, I love listening to talking books or podcasts or some of the plays on Radio 4. There are some really interesting podcasts out there which I'm really enjoying right now, especially on my train journey's! 

How do you like to relax and destress? Leave your recommendations, and your favourite podcasts, in the comments below :) 

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