I had a good day today. I had steady, sustained energy all day and got a lot accomplished. I think, if I can maintain a diet close to this, that I will be able to get more done in a day. I am very excited about this. I have learned many things through this month and taken my diet to a new level. If I was to summarize the key points from this month they would be:
1. Listen to your body. Even food that should be very healthy, such as the raw food and nuts, I found did not agree with me in large quantities.
2. Limit the time you are willing to put up with “detox” symptoms. I had chronic diarrhea for the first two weeks. This means that I was absorbing very little of any of my fat soluble vitamins, and I was losing more weight than I wanted to. If I had continued like that, I may have developed signs of vitamin A or D deficiency, or a bowel pathology such as irritable bowel syndrome. Listen to your own body rather than expert opinions. A little detox is a good thing. A prolonged rash or digestive disturbance may signify other problems.
3. Avoid as much as possible anything in a package. Even healthy packaged food should only be eaten as an occasional treat. Real, from scratch food preparation will always be more healthy than factory made food.
4. Include tons of vegetables in your diet. Whether you are vegan, vegetarian or omnivorous, vegetables offer tons of benefit. What surprised me on this diet was that vegetables are a source of protein, and if you eat enough of them you can get sufficient quantities. I am not so worried now about every meal being “balanced”, with a non-vegetable source of protein. Vegetables protect against cancer and aging, and even change your DNA (for the better). Green smoothies help tremendously with vegetable intake.
5. Eat seeds. I am planning on including more raw seeds in my diet. They are humble and not as tasty as roasted, salted seeds, but they are ever so good for you. Your vitamins can come from your vegetables and fruit, but your minerals come from seeds. Chia, hemp , flax , sunflower and pumpkin seeds are all superstars of the nutrition world. Best of all, for those with nut sensitivities, or those eating in a nut restricted office or school, seeds will more than substitute for nuts. They are also usually a lot cheaper as well. Soak them and they become even better for you.
6. Stop when full. When I am eating a very exciting or tasty meal, I only eat as much as I need to satisfy my hunger. I am thinking this is likely how we are supposed to eat most of the time. Consider cultures that are not affluent. People eat the same few foods every day, varying the taste of the food only for feasts and special occasions. It’s kind of like eating when you have a cold and can’t smell or taste the food. You just eat what you need. I plan to eat most of my meals in a very basic form from now on, and not strive so hard for delicious flavor. I think too, I will then appreciate the times when I pull out all the stops to prepare gourmet fare.
7. Regular detoxing. I have been doing some sort of detox once a year for the past three years. I am considering more frequent, shorter detox diets to keep my system clear. Maybe one or two days a month would be good. I really like the lightness and relief from symptoms that a detox brings.
Here’s what I ate today:
Blueberries with soaked sunflower seeds and cinammon
The Indian food from yesterday and a slice of GF bread
Vega protein bar (chocolate!)
Leftover sauce from the Indian food with chickpeas added over brown basmati rice
Sauteed eggplant and onion
Green salad of field greens and red pepper
Bhavnagari (chickpea snack)
Progress! After one week of eating raw, I am now seeing some benefits. First, my digestion has almost normalized. I avoided almonds and lemon today, and had just a bit of greens, so that likely helped. Lots of soaked seeds today, both sunflower and pumpkin. There is improvement with my neck, about 1/2 as stiff as it was. Allergic rhinitis is about 80% improved. My weight is down 3 pounds, which puts me at a BMI of 19.5. I really don’t want to lose any more weight. The best news is that my waist:hip ratio is now 0.77 which is in the normal range for women. So I have dropped my chronic disease risk considerably. Facebook fans – thanks for the encouraging remarks and suggestions. Makes this journey a lot more interesting.
Large fruit salad of bananas, orange, apple, coconut, soaked sunflower seeds
olive sunflower seed pate
curried pumpkin seed pate
Date, sunflower seed, carob, coconut balls