Welcome to my food and travel blog, Chompchomp. My name is Martine and I live in the city of Perth, Western Australia. It is a beautiful part of the world blessed with long sunny days, relaxed and friendly people and most of all an abundance of fresh local produce.
My father is French and my mother was raised by her Cantonese father which meant food played a major part in my childhood. Dad was always so proud that I was a child that would eat anything. Unfortunately for me however, illness was also a big part of my growing up and I suffered terribly from severe asthma and eczema, the former of which landed me in hospital many times. I even spent some time in the ICU department when my oxygen levels dropped dangerously low. I remember trying to complete a matriculation physics assignment whilst in hospital but I was unable to draw the graphs and sketches because my hands would shake so badly from the asthma medications. To add insult to injury I also suffered from digestive problems which I learnt to live with for many years.
In my early thirties my sister was diagnosed with fructose malabsorption and after switching to a fructose friendly (low FODMAP) diet she found her digestive symptoms resolved. I tried a low FODMAP diet and found not only did my insides thank me so did my allergies. After having decades of painful, itching sores my eczema miraculously cleared. This prompted me to seek advice from a gastroenterologist who subsequently suspected that I had coeliac disease. In order to perform the necessary tests for this I had to return to eating gluten for 8 weeks. Within days my skin flared up again and the gastroenterologist referred me onto a dermatologist who suspected it to be a skin form of coeliacs.
Eight torturous gluten-eating weeks later I had my gut biopsies and blood tests performed which showed no evidence of coeliacs in my gut despite a positive blood test. My gastroenterologist’s diagnosis was gluten intolerance with a suspected skin form of coeliacs. Following on from that I took breath tests to confirm I also have fructose malabsorption. I have been on a strict gluten free diet for over five years now and have a new lease on life. My skin looks years younger, I have more energy, sleep better and no longer suffer from mood swings or iron deficiency.
My darling husband (known as “the Boy” in my blog) and I recently married in Phuket in early 2013 at the breath taking Andara Resort in Kamala. We are both avid animal lovers and I am a self-confessed crazy cat lady. We have two adorable fur-children Roland (Rollie) and Edward (Eddie). They are the most divine little creatures and they make us both smile every day.
My love of animals has been something that spans back as far as I can remember and led to me choosing the career path of a companion animal veterinarian. I’ve been a vet for 15 years now and I love my job more and more every day. I am lucky enough to work with a group of incredibly dedicated people who all strive to achieve the same goal with compassion, enthusiasm, excellence and integrity.
Finally, I cannot forget to mention my love for shoes. Being the daughter of a fashion designer has instilled the love for shoes from a very young age. My father’s labels include Robert Robert and the more edgy Diavolina by Robert Robert. I was fortunate enough to be born with feet the same size as Dad’s samples so every season he generously sends me a whole carton of new footwear. His shoes are like pieces of art on the foot and I am very proud of his success.
I hope you enjoy sharing my foodie journey as I endeavour to prove to myself and my readers that a gluten free, fructose friendly diet does not mean missing out on deliciousnesses. And yes that IS a word! 😉
I always greatly appreciated any feedback or comments.
Thank you so much, happy feasting and hope you enjoy reading!