I am leaving this post at the top of my blog because it is my story…..my food story. It is how I got here.
About a year and a half…..maybe 2 years ago, my life changed forever. You would think that I would remember the exact timing when all of this began, but I don’t. It was traumatic, it sucked, I was pissed, but I was willing to try ANYTHING to feel better. I was waking up in the morning starting everyday bloated, lethargic, constipated, and just generally feeling like crap. I had over the year and a half or so (I am crappy with timing…sorry, get over it *i mean that with lots of love) just felt crappy and had complained to my doctor as such. He ran a ton of tests trying to figure out what was wrong with me was probably starting to think that I was somewhat of a hypochondriac when he finally said, “Let’s run a food sensitivity test.”
Those are the words that changed my life forever. Literally, FOREVER. I am seriously not being dramatic here. I wish that I was. My results came back and it showed what I feel like are a million things that I was ‘sensitive’ to. Nothing serious, nothing that if I ate it I would go into shock and die, but sensitive to. His recommendation to me was to stop eating EVERYTHING on the list for 90 days and gradually one thing at a time see if my system could handle them. Here is my list:
allspice, basil, black pepper, cayenne, cumin, dill, fennel, horse radish, nutmeg, sage, thyme, vanilla, banana, alfalfa, lobster, salmon, sardine, shrimp, sole, tuna, egg yolk, buckwheat, corn, kidney bean, oat, pinto bean, rice, walnut, wheat, yeast
Yes. I cried. Then I put it in my purse and told myself that if I ignored it that it would go away.
It didn’t go away.
So I pulled out the list, looked at it, cried again, and committed to getting rid of everything for 30 days. I am not sure about you, but I can do anything for a month.
My first trip to the grocery store took 4 hours. I read every label and was shocked to see that pretty much EVERYTHING has corn syrup, wheat, rice, or black pepper in it. Super. Great. So, I cried some more.
I was seriously cranky and honestly PISSED OFF the first two weeks of trying to eat better for my body. My family trying to be helpful would look at every label in our house and say “oh, you can’t have this.” They all almost died at my hands. It felt like my whole world was spinning out of control. I was miserable and mad…..and hungry.
Then something strange happened. Suddenly I felt better. I woke up one morning and wasn’t swollen, in pain, my face had cleared up, and I was slightly less cranky. Interesting. THEN I got on the scale. Holy crap, I was 5 pounds lighter.
Well…….maybe this isn’t so horrible.
Shortly after that one of my clients came in and recommended a cookbook. It is called Paleo Comfort Foods by Julie and Charles Mayfield. I nodded and smiled and thought to myself, “Ya right sweetie, no one has to or would actually choose to eat like I have to. It sucks.” But I looked into it anyway and was shocked to see that I could actually eat 90% of the food in their cookbook! I was so excited that I stared researching about eating ‘Paleo” and bought several other cookbooks. It was life changing. For those of you that are not familiar with eating ‘Paleo” it is basically lean meat, fish, fruit, veggies, and nuts. No dairy, no sugar, no beans, no processed foods. Basically you eat like a caveman. I wan’t ready to give up sugar and dairy, but I was thrilled to have some recipes that I could actually follow.
During the process of changing my diet I went from weighing 179 pounds to weighing 163. Yes, I am putting the number our there. It is big. It freaks me out to type it. I am 5’8″ and by no means have a small frame. I was stuck at 163 and really wanted to get back to what I remembered to be my smallest adult weight which was 155. Being determined to get there I decided that starting October 1, 2012 I would cut the dairy and sugar and just make the leap to straight Paleo. Somewhere around the middle of December I hit my goal weight. Score. I’m all in.
I have found that I can actually eat some of the things that are on my restricted list. Mostly the spices…..NOT the black pepper, wheat, rice or corn. People often ask me “What do you eat?!?!?” I have decided to start this blog to try to answer that question. I am going to do my best to post my weekly meals and what I spend at the grocery store. Mostly to help people that I know that are trying to eat more Paleo for health or other reasons, and partly to hold my self accountable.