I have always been fairly health conscious when it comes to my food. Making sure to eat enough fruits and veggies with protein and avoiding carbs. At least I like to think.
I was diagnosed with a scary internal bleeding condition in 2011 that threw my food intake all over the map and causing my activity levels to drop tremendously. I gained a quick 60 pounds and struggled from different diets the doctor had me on. I could eat simple carbs only to be nice to my gut after surgeries, and no fiber was allowed as it was too hard for my tummy to digest. I couldn’t really work out very much and did my best with food but it was very hard. When you get out of the hospital after only digesting jello and chicken broth you want some real food! My diet from the hospital to home was a nightmare on my system. I managed to eat as healthy as I could but when you’re staring death in the face you just want some nachos and are not too worried about the rest.
Thankfully I survived and am in good health now, for the most part. After years of the doctors saving my life with medical experimentation, my body is still paying the price. Years of iron infusions laced in sucrose and antibiotics from infections my immune system is shot. I developed some serious food sensitivities. Right now I am in the crux of discovering if my issues are curable through avoiding certain foods or if I have an autoimmune disorder.
Last year my husband and I did the Candida Diet. It was HARD but saw some amazing results. We both lost weight and felt amazing. Then the holidays came and we dabbled in sugars and carbs and every symptom came back with vengeance. I knew gluten and dairy were issues and I tried to kick them out of my life but I was just not there yet. I still craved them and struggled to not “cheat” here and there. I knew something had to change when I spent every day after work on the couch and had spikes and major falls in energy. I suffered from constant headaches, body aches, and overall irritability.
My doctors have me on many different medications to help boost my immune system and bring my life back to a healthy balance but I am not experiencing the healthy life I craved when I was so sick. About a month ago my doctor told me to pick a diet that I thought I could do and see how my body responded. The next day one of my best friends messaged me saying she was ordered by her doctor to do the Elimination Diet. I jumped in and we have been going through the journey together.
The Elimination Diet has you strip your diet in the beginning with a detox then transitions into a basic diet of lean proteins with fruits and veggies. Once all your symptoms clear you test different foods to see what foods are causing issues. This diet has been life changing for me! I have lost 17 pounds and experience more energy and a clear mind for the first time I can remember and I am not even half way through the program.
The biggest thing I am learning is the difference between “what looks healthy” and “what is actually healthy”. I used to roll my eyes at most organics and now I refuse to buy non-organic food for my family. The more I learn about the food industry and try for myself what food is doing to my body – the more convinced I am that the food industry is trying to kill us – or at least make us sick. But that opinion is for another article.
I know it is expensive to buy organic BUT think about it. How much money do we spend on managing diseases and doctors visits due to blood sugar, blood pressure, and inflammation issues? It is actually cheaper to buy organics the first time and eat well than have large medical bills. Trust me – it will change your life!
Also published on Medium.