Trust me, I will post the run part of my latest Ironman tomorrow.
Today, I wanted to share with you what I’ve been up regarding my diet. For those of you who have been with me since Germany, you may know that I’ve always had stomach issues. A few years ago, I decided to start experimenting with different foods since my doctors were of NO help, and I was fed up with being constipated for 7 to 9 days at a time even though I was eating what I (and my nutritionist) thought was a good amount of veggies.
I tried cutting out the gluten (completely) and dairy (most of the time). That actually helped for a little while. I was even vegan as well for a few months when I did this. Then, my stomach issues started rearing their ugly head(s) again last year. At least the sharp pains stopped when I cut out gluten completely.
I tried an Ayurvedic Cleanse in which some people thought I was crazy for doing. What can I say? I was desperate. It didn’t hurt me, but it didn’t really help me in the long run either.
My constipation issues continued albeit not as bad as when I was on gluten, but 3 to 5 days is still not “normal.” I don’t care what any doctor says, AND the thought of taking stool softener pills for the rest of my life is just stupid.
So, this time I’m attempting the Paleo diet. Actually, I’m started the Whole 30 last week.
You basically cut out legumes, grains, dairy, and sugar for 30 days. You can still have fruit, vegetables, nuts/seeds, oils, and meat (preferably grassfed free range). The Whole 30 website goes into detail, and I think they do a much better job explaining it than I would be able to. My overall goal with cutting out all grains, legumes, and dairy for now is to let my gut heal for 30 days. Then, I want to start adding some of these foods back into my diet depending on how they make me feel. For instance, I know that quinoa in large quantities, despite being gluten free, does not like my stomach. I’m not sure about soy yet so this will help me figure it out. For some reason, I have an inkling that the only grain that will go easy on my stomach will be rice, and I probably won’t get to have it that often.
In the paleo diet, you don’t necessarily have to cut out sugar completely normally. You can still have maple syrup and honey, I believe. However, my addiction to sugar has really gotten out of control, and that is why I decided to go the Whole 30 route in order to break some of my bad habits related to this. I’m not perfect people!! Diabetes runs in my family, and I don’t need to open that box of worms!! My overall goal with cutting out the sugar for 30 days is to be able to have dessert once or twice a week instead of 2-3 times/day.
What I also like about the Paleo Diet: It is backed by actual scientific research. Mark’s Daily Apple usually has some really good thoroughly researched posts on the diet as well as Dr. Cordain’s website.
I know this sounds really extreme, but I’m sick of my stomach being bloated ALL the freaking time, and I just want to have a “regular” digestive track. I don’t wear tight fitting shirts or dresses because of this, and I’m fairly in shape. I should be able to!! Plus, you try not pooping for 5 days, and see how nice of a person you are!
Week 1 Thoughts/Results
* I pooped!!!! Of course it took about 5 days to get things moving since I had a GF pizza with cheese from Dominos the Sunday before I started. This is normal if I eat cheese or accidentally eat gluten due to cross contamination (very likely at Dominos). Ever since Friday, I have gone every single day. Do you know how long it has been since I’ve gone for 4 consecutive days? I can’t remember!
* Way less bloating. Of course, I decided to start this thing the week of “the special monthly gift.” There was some bloating associated with that, but once that was gone, nothing. My stomach feels free!!
* I felt mentally and physically exhausted. I expected this because I have read on multiple blogs to expect this the first week or two due to your body adjusting to the lower carb intake. I missed my iced coffee. Since I couldn’t have any almond or coconut milk (both store bought versions have some sort of legume or corn product added to them, and I was too lazy to make my own), I didn’t want any coffee. It was bad enough that I couldn’t add any sugar to it, but I refused to drink it black. So, green tea it was.
* I wanted to gouge my eyes out last week due to NO sugar except for fruit. This was very scary to me that my cravings could be this bad which made me want to carry on with this “sugar detox” even more. I basically had a headache from Thursday until yesterday morning. I think my body was going through sugar withdrawals. I dreamt of eating chocolate cake glazed doughnuts all last week. And cake with lots of buttercream icing. Yep. This was the hardest part of last week. It wasn’t the lack of grains or legumes, it was the lack of added sugar!!
Have you ever tried to go Paleo? Have you ever tried a sugar detox? Do you have a stomach of “steel” like my husband? Nothing seems to bother his!