Honestly I feel like I tried everything in the past few years, be it for my health problems or just for general health. Specifically about food, I have been to a nutritionist a few years back that specialised in treating digestive system disorders with tailored made diets. What I’m going to write is just my experience, I’m no expert and I don’t intend to give advise.
I had some blood tests done and the results told me if I had any allergy, intolerance or simply my body didn’t agree too well with eating particular foods. I thought “great! this is gonna work!!!”. She sent me home with a list of foods that I could eat and another with ones that I couldn’t. Unfortunately the first one was very tiny compare to the second. The nutritionist wanted me to cut almost everything, without considering my likes and dislikes, how much food I eat or how my body works; for example I have a really fast metabolism, I loose weight very easily and find it hard to put it back on. After a month of this diet, I was unhappy and grumpy all the time, lost weight (when I really didn’t need to) and didn’t feel any better. I still went on with it, I was allowed to reintroduce some food items but it still didn’t work for me. After 3 months I gave up.
Have you ever heard of “intuitive eating”? It is basically rejecting any diet mentality and honoring your hunger with what you feel is right for you, listening to your body when it’s full and when it’s hungry. When I was in a really bad flare with my chronic pelvic pain I found eating really difficult and skipped most meals. Obviously that didn’t have a good impact on my general health. I was staying at my parents’ because they were helping me looking after my daughter while I was in too much pain to do anything. I have spent a long time in bed which gave me the opportunity to look into different dietary approach. When I looked into veganism I immediately felt that it would suit me, at least for this period of my life. When I went back home I jumped ino it immediately; that was the first week of May. So it has been now a bit over two months and it’s going great, I listen to what my body needs, following the principles of being vegan. I learnt how to cook many yummy meals and snacks. There is nothing that I miss or crave and I learnt a lot about nutrition My energy levels are higher and I don’t experience fog brain anymore. My digestion is effortless now and I don’t feel bloated all the time. And I’m actually just enjoying eating much more.
Do I think everyone should go vegan? Did I force my family into becoming vegan? No and No! What I think is that you should just listen to your body and make the best choices for yourself. My husband is not interested in trying this approach to food and I let my toddler decide what she wants to eat. Interestingly enough she really loves fruit and vegetables , she likes beans and similars but she also loves eating dairy (milk, cheese,…) and doesn’t enjoy substitutes ( almond milk, coconut milk,…). I think when she is a bit older she can make her choice and decide which direction she wants to take about food. I also started sharing pictures of my food online, I think it’s fun and makes me love cooking these delicious meals even more. And you get to know people that are on a similar journey who are willing to help and support eachother.
The most important thing is look after your body because you only get one and it will take you through life so it should be your most “valuable possession”. Love yourself!