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So, What CAN I Eat?

20 J0000006UTC 2011

This is the question of the hour, the day, the month. Currently my husband and I are doing the very thing with that I either a) felt sorry for people for having to do or b) made fun of people for making themselves do. We have, voluntarily, for seemingly no reason, taken gluten, dairy, corn and soy out of our diet. For my husband that means “pretty much anything that tastes good.”

What this looks like in everyday terms is that there is no wheat, rye or barley– so that is normal pasta, bread, cereal, bagels and baked yummy goods. There is no milk, cheese (almond “cheese product” does not count), cream, yogurt, cottage cheese (a big protein source) or a lot of mystery sauces. There is no tortillas, tortilla chips (our very favorite), grits, or (so sad) high fructose corn syrup– found in just about everything on the grocery store shelf. And there is no soy– which is pretty okay with me– but that’s soy milk, tofu, tempeh, edemame, soy nuts, miso or soy lecithin– an emulsifier found in candy, cookies, yogurts and tons of other stuff. I’m also off eggs because they make my tummy hurt. All to say, my famous cheese grits with a side of toast slathered in butter and my beloved’s nightly IPA are t-o-t-a-l-l-y  o-u-t.

But that is the no, no, no part.

Here’s the yes part. All kinds of meat, even bacon (nice, clean sources), full spectrum of veggies, bunches of fruits, nuts and seeds, avocados and olives, coconut, beans and lentils, coffee (in moderation) and tea, almond and peanut butter, chocolate, honey and agave, rice and other non-gluten grains, olive and coconut oil, coconut and almond milk, all herbs and spices and anything I can dream up or concoct from all these delicious ingredients.

So why are we doing it? I’m wondering as I sit here craving an Italian mini loaf from whole foods and some creamy Strauss yogurt.

1. For clean-up. We are giving our bodies a break by eating simply and by eating tons of fruits and veggies.

2. For trouble-shooting. Because we are taking out the top 4 allergens (5 for me), we could find out if we are having any reactions to these major foods and hone in on any weird symptoms that either appear or disappear.

3. For experience. When I am finally a Nutrition Consultant, and I need to recommend this type of ‘elimination diet’ for the purpose of figuring out food allergies and sensitivities, I want clients to know I have tried it myself and have ideas, frustrations and recipes to back it up.

Believe me. I am not trying to convince you, dear reader, to do this. I am mostly trying to convince myself why I am! I will report in later with how it’s coming along. Till then, chow!

10 Comments leave one →
  1. 20 J0000006UTC 2011 8:42 pm

    Haha nice! I’ve done those, but not exactly the same. I usually do a no-sugar no bread diet from time to time to detox, because sugar and simple carbs really rot your body inside… and guess what? Chocolate and the occasional pasta are one of my favoriteeeeeeee foods! Haha 🙂 But it’s all worth it, I guess.
    Let me know how it goes, God bless! 🙂

    • 20 J0000006UTC 2011 8:46 pm

      Beautiful! Good to hear it and, yeah, the simple sugars are a real culprit. I was thinking just today that even though pasta is not one of my favorites, a big plate of handmade, real, Italian pasta sure does sound good….
      Thanks for sharing!

  2. 20 J0000006UTC 2011 8:51 pm

    Hey Sister!
    I’d love to know how this goes for you.
    I’d also love some snacking alternatives to stuff like tortilla chips and goldfish.

    I’ve cut out a lot of bread from my diet. I almost don’t eat bread at all anymore.

    Maybe someday you and I can discuss simple workarounds for my meals.

    • 20 J0000006UTC 2011 8:56 pm

      Yeah, I will let you know how it goes for sure, virtually and personally. Snack alternatives– maybe this would be a good follow-up post because snacks are important, especially for blood sugar-balance (vital for weight loss or weight maintaining) and for building help post-work out. As for cutting out the bread and other processed grain carbs– way to go– those are hard to give up, but so good to limit. And yes! I need practice working on meals and we all need help!

  3. Anji Redmond permalink
    20 J0000006UTC 2011 9:23 pm

    I did a similar – 6 months of no dairy, gluten, sugar, caffeine, processed foods and alcohol. Cold turkey – no cheating, 6 months later….. noticed no difference. Introduced everything back in…. no difference. I did get some really good food ideas.. And for me some of it was easy, I don’t dirnk alcohol, not too into dairy and no need for coffee (caffeine). But I figured after 6 months of “giving up” I should have seen a reason why. I do know people who have had HUGE life transformations, particularly from giving up gluten. So hopefully these eliminations will give you some insight into what could be not so good for you and your mind/body. One recommendation – “The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook” – has some great recipes and info (though corn and soy are still in some of the recipes.) And you can’t beat Pamela’s mixes for “baking” substitutes. Definitely the best on the market. Still use it for many things since it beats just plain white flour.

    Anji R. (I can’t remember my log in ;-0)

    • 20 J0000006UTC 2011 10:10 pm

      Great! I knew I would get some awesome stories…and I got your result when I took out gluten for six weeks once before. Good to know the positive end of things too. And thank you for the cookbook recommendation! I am always on the prowl for good ones…

  4. Noelle permalink
    20 J0000006UTC 2011 7:01 pm

    I think for allergen and experience’s sake, this is a good thing. I personally am not a huge believer in eliminating foods, but that’s partly because I’m lazy and weak, in the most “foodiest” sense of the words. I LOVE food and if I tell myself I absolutely can’t have something, that’s the one thing on the planet I will crave. And while I might have the willpower to not seek that food out, if it’s put in front of me (Thanks for the doughnuts, coworkers!) I AM GOING TO EAT IT. I eat a broad spectrum of foods (except liver… I hate that shit) and try to keep the “bad for me” stuff to a minimum. That, in combination with regular exercise keeps me feeling healthy and youthful. Not bad, I say. However, if I suffered from any ailments that might potentially be relieved by eliminating certain foods from my diet, it would absolutely be my first course of action. Good luck, friend. :o)

    • 20 J0000006UTC 2011 8:59 pm

      Yes! Thanks for the good word on how good it is to eat delicious food. There is much to say for that alone! Something tells me though, that your sense of balance (both literal and figurative) is pretty outstanding…and yeah, a doughnut sounds pretty good right now. Time to go make lunch!

  5. Adrienne permalink
    20 J0000006UTC 2011 6:40 pm

    Your title really hit home for me, Kris! I’m so sick of people asking me, as a gluten and dairy free gal–What on earth do you eat?! in this panicked tone. Or they feel guilty about ordering dessert in front of me because I can’t have any. Yes, I’ll admit, sometimes I feel a little deprived at restaurants when there’s only one option or while traveling when there are no options. But ultimately it’s no big deal and I just eat some watermelon instead of something full of calories and sugar–or worse HFCS. But the insane thing is the number of people who have no idea what wheat even is. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked if I can eat potatoes and corn. It’s unbelievable to me that we, as a society, have gotten so far away from what real food is that we can’t even differentiate between simple, unprocessed foods that come from the ground.

    • 20 J0000006UTC 2011 6:52 pm

      Thanks for another angle– the eating-out bit does get a little challenging, but it does just take awareness. You definitely have more practice than I do. And yes, we are far from our food, that’s for sure. When “food” selections come from bags, cases and troughs, it is difficult to know what’s what.

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