I just ate a WHOLE PACK of chocolate chip cookies, and they tasted SO GOOD. Sure, I didn’t mean to eat the whole pack, but also, I feel okay having done that. And that feels good. (Though I realize I should probably stick with the single serve cookies).
The thing is, sugar doesn’t bother my stomach. Gluten doesn’t bother my stomach. I know those two are pretty common no-no’s, but I have several food sensitivities, and those two things are fine. (Now if I ate 10,000 M&M’s and chased that with 20,000 pancakes, we’d probably have a problem, but you know).
Two of the most prominent sensitivities I have (and that are most often found in everyday food items) are dairy and soy.
I can eat dairy, but my gut definitely feels it. If I eat too much soy, it affects my hormones/emotions, so I aim to avoid it altogether. (Hence the dairy and soy free cookies I linked above. Mmm.)
There are also several little sensitivities that I have as well, like a lot of fruits and nightshade vegetables. But the main two, again, are dairy and soy.
Remember that sugar detox I did earlier this year, and how skewed my relationship with food was in the several weeks following that? This week, I finally feel like I’m back to a good place with food. Here are some of the steps I’ve gone through to get here:
Sugar Detox (rarely felt satisfied, though I felt other physical benefits which were nice)
Binge Eating (toward the end of the detox, and continuing for a few weeks afterward. I just couldn’t feel satisfied)
Tracking Food (in the MyFitnessPal app for a few days. This helped me simply observe what I was eating, and be more mindful about how much I was consuming, without judgment)
Counting Macros (on and off for a couple of weeks, to specifically observe how many carbs/proteins/fats I was consuming, learn about that, and be more mindful about it)
Letting Go (and eating without tracking or judgment)
Eliminating Dairy and Soy (my most common sensitivities)
Different things work for different people, and I think I personally needed to explore my relationship with food even just briefly in these different ways to get to where I am now.
I had eliminated dairy and soy before the sugar detox, but somehow, during those 3 weeks of no-sugar and following weeks of distorted eating habits, I had forgotten how to eat to feel good. What would I eat for meals? For snacks? I just couldn’t remember. Over the past few months I’ve been re-discovering foods that I used to love, that I had forgotten about.
For example, on Tuesday I suddenly craved a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, so I bought a jar of store-bought peanut butter and a loaf of bread for probably the first time since that detox. I ate two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches at work that day, and they were SO GOOD. And it FELT so good to enjoy it!
When I eat these foods like cookies and PB&J sandwiches (as long as they’re dairy free and soy free), I feel full and satisfied, but not bloated, gassy, or sick. When I’m eating foods like bananas, tofu, red peppers, cheese, all natural fruit snacks, watermelon, avocado, and a bunch of other random “healthy” items, I feel a level of discomfort—ranging from a sour stomach, to 4-hours of intense can’t-move-from-the-fetal-position-or-talk-or-think nausea (that’s avocado).
What I want you to know from this post is:
1. Every body is different, and every body has different needs/sensitivities. Maybe eliminating gluten or dairy or sugar etc. is for you, and maybe it’s not! I really don’t believe that there’s ONE way to eat to feel good (if I followed every healthy-eating-diet recommendation, I’d probably be dead. Yikes!) If you think your body could be performing or feeling better, perhaps try eliminating common allergens for a few days/weeks, then slowly reintroducing them back into your diet one at a time. This will help you see how your body reacts to each one. If you want to learn more about this, I recommend the book The Virgin Diet, which outlines this whole process. (Check your local library!)
You could also get an allergy test at your doctor’s office, but even then, the results won’t be perfect. I did a skin test a few years back, plus a blood test to double check a few of the allergens, and some of the things that came up don’t bother me enough to worry about, and some of the things that make me sick to my stomach didn’t come up at all! It did offer me a lot of insight (and confirmed some of the suspicions I had about dairy and soy, both of which I had reactions to), but eliminating then later reintroducing possible allergens is the best way to know your individual sensitivities.
2. I’ve been eating cookies and PB&J and I finally feel happy and satisfied, body and soul. That really was the reason I started writing this post—ha!
I should also note that I still have a green smoothie every day. I still incorporate a lot of vegetables and good things into my diet. I’ve been focusing a lot on hydrating well and fueling well, especially with all of my athletic goals I have this year. I’m sure that I will continue to refine my eating habits as needed to reach these goals. But for right now, I feel pretty good where I’m at.
*P.S. Photo is of a dairy-free and soy-free pizza I got the other day from Blaze Pizza. Mmm!! The allergy finder on their website is awesome. I indicated what allergies I have and it told me everything on their menu I could eat. It was AWESOME. And their crust is dairy and soy free, as is their vegan cheese (that’s always hit or miss with the soy). It was SO GOOD.
** P.P.S. This post contains some Amazon Affiliate links, which means that if you purchase these products through these links, I’ll receive a small % of the sale. Which is cool! So thank you if you do ever buy anything from my blog through these affiliate links!