So it’s August, I announced back in early July that I was going to try and go grain-free for 30 days to see how it made me feel. My goal with my eating/health is to continuously fit the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle together that is my diet.
Before I get all over the place and ramble on with my thoughts on wheat and my dietary changes since cutting it out, here’s my update on 30 days grain-free.
- Overall I feel better. Calmer.
- There were things I was feeling before that I didn’t even know were “abnormal” to me, until I started feeling how I do now.
- My sugar intake is under 18 grams per day (at the highest it was probably well over 60 some days)
- My body doesn’t look much different. My stomach may have gone down slightly. I don’t rely on the scale, it goes up and down to much. I’m also convinced now that I won’t see my “final” results until I am 100% through with breastfeeding. My diet is so clean and I workout so hard I can’t do much more. I’m okay with that and my now “calmer” demeanor is urging more self acceptance
- I added some new foods back into my diet, and overall I feel good about it.
- Going grain-free was much easier than I thought it would be!
- I’m going to stick with it, but if I have a special occasion now and then and want to eat something I will eat it, if it doesn’t continue to make me feel bad when those occasions happen….
(I did accidentally have flour, long story short…I ate a flour taco, not corn and it actually did make me sick. I didn’t think it would be a big deal but I had a horrible headache, was nauseous and couldn’t sleep that night! Crazy!)
One of the things I have mentioned frequently is giving up my sugar addiction.This was something that I was in denial of for a long time. Although I ate a very healthy plant-based diet, with no processed foods, I still downed a lot of “natural sugars.” Dates, maple syrup, agave, etc. And foods that caused the same high insulin response sugar causes, grains.
Grains & Sugar are connected
I found the more grains in general I cut out, the less I craved sugar.
The more protein and healthy fats I ate, the easier it was and the better I felt.
There’s a lot of reasons to cut out wheat. Wheat is an opiate. The wheat of today is not the wheat of yesteryear. Heart disease, diabetes, obesity, high triglycerides….it’s not from eating fat. Science continues to show that it’s eating a high carbohydrate diet that fuels those diseases.
When I tell clients this it blows their minds. They can’t even comprehend it, and it’s something it took me a while to wrap my head around as well! (ETA: I still do not think this is a ticket to eat as much dairy and meat as you want…I still believe plant strong diets are healthiest )
It’s funny. Saturated fats, fats in general started to become demonized by doctors and nutrionists in 1953. Prior to that women cooked with butter, lard and pig fat (as disgusting as that sounds). Yet, the majority of people had a size 24 waist, not a “muffin top.” Why do you think that is? Because fat is not the enemy. People ate less sugar back then and more REAL food. Eggs came from a local farm. Meat came from the local butcher, and he got it from a local farm as well. Produce wasn’t genetically modified and resistant to roundup. Less food came from a package, and more came from the ground. Bread was different. Structurally, it was very, very different. People didn’t eat the high amount that they eat today. Portions were smaller.
Food today is scary. It’s not even food.
And more and more people are sick and fat and tired and on medication than ever before. Children even.
People in the 1950’s were told to stop cooking with butter and to stop eating fat. What happened? More carbohydrates. A higher insulin response. More fat storage. People got sicker and sicker.
It’s not until many, many years later that it finally came out that maybe saturated fat isn’t the enemy? Maybe doctors were wrong?
It makes me so sad. The scariest part is, the things companies are marketing to our children as “healthy.”
^Real food. One of my favorite grain-free lunches. A huge bowl of massaged kale with a 3 whole egg omelet and goats cheese.
With all that said, bottom line is cutting back on grains and not just wheat allowed me to really examine my diet, and get a little more creative and even more open-minded.
Sugar is enemy #1. It’s toxic, addictive. I’ve said it a million times on here. As Dr. Mark Hyman says, it’s genocide for our children. Never before has adult onset diabetes been so prevalent in young kids.That’s why I’ve been so diligent with Ella’s diet. There’s no reason now to give a 15 month old, during a critical time in her development, a piece of white bread or a cookie because it’s cute. I want her to eat REAL food. Not develop a taste at a young age for something that’s toxic to her still developing system.
Bread/wheat spikes insulin levels just as sugar does. One of my “bibles” way back when, which still lays on my shelf is “The Glucose Revolution.” That book helped me to learn so much about blood sugar and eating the right foods for a better insulin response.
When I incorporated a low GI diet, it was the start of my recovery and end of binge eating. Although, slowly again, I ate more whole grains, and my sugar intake was lower, but still way too high. I am convinced that a lot of the processed food, artificial colors and all of the sugar I consumed as a kid were in part what set me up to have food addiction and disordered behaviors as a teenager and adult. The more and more I read, the more and more that rings true.
So some may think cutting back on grains is pretty extreme? What do I eat? It’s simple really. I eat food. Real food. As far as my ethical stance of not eating meat… I have lightened up on that recently. Going grain-free pushed me to it:
I have been considering for a couple of months now another major change in my diet. Adding back in red meat and chicken.
- My reason for giving up meat was the fact I could not stomach the conditions of factory farms.
- I was never keen on eating a lot of soy (or any processed GMO soy for that mater) or grains, so I added in eggs and fish
- I think it’s important that we eat as a family. That my family eats healthy, humanely raised, plant-based foods.
- The more of the same we eat, the healthier my family will eat, AT HOME (not out because it’s easier) and the more $ I will save grocery shopping by not making separate meals
- I want to be a healthy role model for Ella. It’s important I eat what she eats. She is not going to be a pescatarian/vegetarian/vegan unless she chooses to be later
- You are what you at. You are what you eat, eats. I am still going to be extremely picky and particular about where my meat comes from
- Giving up grains, and cutting my sugar habit limited my diet. I still consider myself eating a plant based diet. I just expanded my protein sources
I ate my first piece of red meat on my birthday. It was grass-fed, organic and came from a local farm. It’s more pricey, but we will not eat it too often. That is my standard. I’d rather pay more and eat it less often (better for the environment anyway), than eat it often and be suspect as to what’s in it.
I was actually weirder about chicken. But one day, while feeding it to Ella (or trying to) I just had some. Then she ate it too. Again, it was local organic raised at the farm down the street.
The past 2 1/2 years between Michael’s pickiness and mine, it’s been difficult at dinnertime. He’s in sales, so he already eats out every single day. Our disagreement on dinner never helps matters (when it’s easier for him to grab something out than me cook 2 meals). I am lucky he loves vegetables, now we can both get more excited about making healthy meals together.
PS–post note, I will also disclaimer to say that different diets work for different people. I think a lot of vegans are so healthy because they eat SO many vegetables, and not a lot of processed foods, etc. Any diet can be “unhealthy” and it’s things in moderation of course…but you have to realize what moderation really means!
Okay, I have ranted long enough. There’s my update on grains and my diet. Off to go see if Erin had her baby yet!
Then it’s Ella food prep day! Lots of kitchen time!
Articles to check out:
The Potential Effects of Soy, and How it Might Decimate the Health of Your Unborn Baby and the Fertility of Future Generations
FDA probes link to food dye and kids behavior (old but worth repeating)
PS—anyone know any good restaurants in Baltimore? Inner harbor…I could go for really good crabs!