The Elimination Diet

I started seeing my nutritionist with the goal of getting a handle on the crazy. I felt like I had lost sight of what made sense nutritionally. South beach made me see some foods as complete junk and others as only allowed in moderation. Some of these foods included bananas, white rice, potatoes, carrots. Making sure these things weren't in my diet became second nature. I didn't miss most of them. When the diet wasn't working so well for me I felt like I was cheating by having bananas and the feeling of the forbidden drove me to overindulge. No bananas? Wellllll, it's only once in a while, I can have this smoothie just this once... So now, instead of eating the damn banana I was eating everything else that went into that smoothie, too.

As I moved away from those ideas I had less and less understanding of what I was putting into my body. I felt like it was a "bad day" when I had had a smoothie and a chai and whole grain toast from the cafeteria at work.

Back to the first appointments with the nutritionist. We talked about all sorts of things: flipping my days to have the heaviest meal in the morning, bringing all the veggies and fruits back into the light, my learnings from regulating my blood sugar. She suggested trying an elimination diet.

What is an elimination diet, you ask? In this particular version I am eliminating 4 major categories of foods: corn (and all its derivatives), wheat, cow's milk dairy and nightshade vegetables (white potatoes, tomatoes, peppers and eggplant). I am starting by taking all 4 categories out for 10 days then will add each back in for a trial day, followed by a few days of basic elimination to note reactions. The whole process takes a little less than a month. I am currently a week in.

So far I think I'm doing ok. I find that I am sleeping much better. I also find that I am eating a lot more fruit and have had juice a couple of times, which still feels like a no-no. I know I get hooked on something that makes me feel like I've found a loop-hole (remember the gluten-free cookie debacle???) and I know I have to keep those things in check.

I've also taken to sharing what I am doing with those around me. Although I feel a bit like a freak of nature for telling them I have also found that the folks I work with and socialize with to be very supportive. And when I tell them what I am doing and why I feel supported, they ask questions and help me by not offering treats they might usually have done. It makes a world of difference.

I'm excited to see what more the week will bring. Soon I will share a post of one of my recent culinary explorations! Apricot-coconut energy bars!