I changed what I eat and lost 12 pounds in 4 weeks
But let me back up first.
You remember when Better Homes and Garden's were here to photograph my bathroom, right? (The issue will be out next year)
I got the call in June and they were her in August. I knew I was going to have my pictures taken at that time and being at my absolute panic-setting-in-this-has-to-stop-right-now heaviest weight, I had to spring into action.
I started my usual scheme of limiting what I ate, adding more greens and even trying a couple of weeks of gluten-free. I became a lot more serious about my morning walks. This was in July. I lost a whopping 4 pounds in 4 weeks. Waho.... yeah, not so much.
For the last year, I had also had it on my mind that I wanted to tackle some emotional work and I was noticing in the past year that my memory was declining, which I felt was worse than something you would just chalk up to age.
I was also really tired all the time.
So before I went to Denmark in August, I went to see a Kinesiologist.
With some blood work and muscle testing, after I returned, we quickly found the culprits: Leaky gut, blood sugar issues, anemia. But hey: My cholesterol came back normal. Woot.
My Kinesiologist promptly put me on an elimination diet. Here it goes:
No sugar (white, organic, honey, agave, Stevia, suganat, artificial sweeteners)
No grains (Bread, pasta, rice, quinoa, etc)
No legumes (Beans, peanuts, lentils, chick peas)
No night shades (Tomatoes, potatoes, bell peppers, egg plant)
No banana, mango, pineapple, raisins, dried fruit
No canola oil, vegetable oil
No caffeine (including in tea)
Grass fed, pastured meat
Berries, apples, pears
Avocado, cucumber, lemon and other fruits like that.
Seeds like sunflower seeds.
Olive oil, Grape seed oil, Avocado oil, hemp seed oil
Apple cider vinegar
Everything coconut (except sugar)
Drink water and herbal tea
I could also eat Yam noodles, unsweetened coconut yoghurt and a couple of other things that I never found, so I didn't eat those.
Of course my burgers never looked like that sad, sad picture up there, but more like this:
Black bean burger - no soy, vegetarian
While that is a whole wheat bun, it's probably contains msg amd gmo's as well as bromated flour (since it's from the supermarket and not home made).
BTW. Did you know about these 10 things that are allowed in American food that are deemed unsafe and banned in other countries? Bromated flour is just one. Read the whole list here: 10 American Foods That Are Banned in Other Countries.
In the past many years, I have been eating a mainly, but not exclusively whole foods based diet, but it did have a lot of grains in it such as oatmeal, artisan bread, multi-grain crackers, whole wheat pasta, brown rice. I have never been a Wonderbread person and we never eat at fast food restaurants, so in that respect the new diet was not that big of a deal. However, my diet did have the hall marks of the SAD diet (Standard American Diet) what with bread, pasta and rice.
Paleo diet - here's looking at you, kid!
It was a big deal to change in that you have to completely rethink your meals, come up with new ones that you actually like and maybe look at some new veggies you never had before such as starting a romance with cruciferous vegetables.
The funny part was that where some might have felt complete dread at the prospect of this kind of limited diet, even for a while, I actually felt some sense of relief.
I am not going to lie. The first weeks were tough. Of course there is the detox period after you go off sugar (Sugar, bread, dairy, alcohol all have a lot of sugar in them). Most people get headaches after 3-4 days as did I, but after a couple of days it goes away again and then the cravings go away too, so that is nice. It is a lot easier to stay away from food that you don't even want to eat (or drink).
I put some more meat into my diet to up my protein levels.
I am still not a meat LOVER, but we started buying most of our meat at Rain Crow Ranch. Yum. Pastured beef. Happy bacon. Such an improvement over even the grass-fed meat we had gotten at Sprouts. The bacon: Out of this world. Not pumped with water. Lean. Tastes like real meat.
I have been reading up on memory issues (spoiler alert: All sugar related). The brain-gut connection and the bio chemical happenings in your body (video) when you eat sugar (especially fructose). It quickly became clear to me why my memory was suffering and why I was so tired. Too much bread and sugar and not enough iron and protein.
After 6 weeks on this diet, I started adding almonds, then tomato. Tomato didn't work for me, so the are on the outs again. I am adding eggs right now and a little bit of honey. That is how I could make those Paleo chocolate almond truffles the other day. Even though I am adding honey back in, I am trying to make my diet as low on the glycemic index as possible so I don't get those ups and downs in my blood sugar.
As you can imagine, I have been spending a LOT of time in the kitchen trying to come up with something beyond steamed broccoli and baked chicken because that is just not me. I need my food to be taste layered, savory and be quick to make. At times you could not even see the kitchen counters. My family has been so supportive, though. Dh has been eating everything I have served and even smiled through the tears at some of the terrible things I made ha ha. B has tasted tested almost everything. He is getting into steak and asparagus and pea soup.
Oh and the weight loss happened with no effort (other than the very time consuming food prep). First week I dropped 5 pounds. Next three weeks two-three pounds each week. Now, at 7 or 8 weeks in I am down 15 pounds and about 4 pounds away from my goal weight.
And it really is true what they say: the fat you have around the belly is sugar related. Unlike earlier weight losses, I lost the belly fat early on with this way of eating. No wonder they call it the sugar gut or the wheat belly.
Best experience on this way of eating: I am not hungry between meals.I stopped snacking. I am full after the meals. I don't have cravings - no food chatter in the brain. My afternoon tiredness is almost gone. My memory is slowly improving. I have much more energy.
Some other things I have noticed: My hair and skin is much more smooth now. Even my hair dresser noticed.
In full disclosure, I do still fall asleep at night almost right after dinner. Still working on that.
Next time I will put up a gallery of the dishes I have been eating and share a few quick recipes. Maybe you might even find a new dish to try.
Edited: Elimination diet - what do I eat?
Dare I say it: some of them are really good and like the receptionist says at my Kinesiologist's: "I eat what I eat because of the way it makes me feel."
I am a Danish American decorating life in Seattle. I love all things design and DIY.
I can’t think of anything more fun than coming up with project, making it, photographing it and sharing it with you on my websites.
I am a Graphic Artist, a remodeller and home maker by day.
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