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30 Day Grain-Free Update

GrainFree30

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

sugar

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.

Bread

Does saturated fat NOT cause heart disease?? 

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?

ScarySeven

It makes me so sad. The scariest part is, the things companies are marketing to our children as “healthy.”

 

kaleandomelet copy

^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.

WHEAT BELLY QUOTE

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:

IMG_0730 copy

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.

Collardchickenwrapchickengrilled

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:

Sugar Babies: How to stop the genocide of our children

Wheat and Eating Disorders: A slave to wheat

The Potential Effects of Soy, and How it Might Decimate the Health of Your Unborn Baby and the Fertility of Future Generations

Saturated fat does NOT cause heart disease

Saturated Fat Benefits

Fat chance that saturated fat causes heart disease

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!

-Laury

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39 Comments

  • Reply Morgan

    I ALWAYS tell people that if you are going to eat meat, eat it less often and get it from a good source! So you are doing awesome there!! I think it is always so important to be constantly evaluating our diets and adjusting to be at optimum health and feel our best. And I just don’t think any one person has the answer. I ALSO think that prepared, sit down, family dinners, with a set table and an “ambiance” if you will of peace and family togetherness is unbelievably important! I think it sets the tone for boneding, memories, and future healthy habits for children (if what you are eating is homemade and healthy) as opposed to those that are on the go non stop. Sometimes for my family, dinner time and our walk by the bay afterwards IS the only down time we have together. Very important,
    I also love to include Dave and the kids in the menu planning. I feel like it is their life too (LOL) and they should have meals they look forward to also. I will give my girls cookbooks and let them mark ercipes that look good to them with post its and then I make them my way. Just what I consider to be healthier maybe than what is in the book.
    I also have felt like my kids have had WAY to much sugar since summer hit. The popsicles, the treats when they are out and about, etc. It’s funny, I was just telling Dave that I am ready to buckle back down for them. Not RESTRICT them but just get them to eat overall less sugar, myself included!!! Its a constant family effort in a world that has sugar in everything. I will allow it still, but just a few times during the week. You know? I am usually really pretty good about it, but in the summer I have just been way more relaxed and “winging it” with the new baby more than usual.
    I also think people get way fixated on things being “vegan” and not necesarilly healthy.
    Um, I just gotta email you girl, gotta update you on my life! Today….later when the kids nap! 😀
    Hugs from me!

    August 2, 2012 at 1:19 pm
    • Reply laury

      Hi Mo Mo!

      I am so glad you don’t hate me for going “dark” hahaha. Yes, I am going to just be so picky about what I am eating. We have a lot of farms around here that raise meat, and for a while I would drive down and say “I just can’t eat him.” But finding that for me, my sugar intake really was out of control and I linked it a lot to eating more grains. Luckily I made that connection! It works for some, but not for me.

      It also got really stressful around here with diners. Mike eats out lunch daily, then now dinner it started being like 4 times a week or more! That’s really bad. We never ate together. Since me adding back in meats, our whole dinnertime ambiance has changed. He is even happier now if that makes sense? ANd I’m happier because I know what he’s eating and where it came from! I can buy some local meat, and I don’t have to worry about making all of this separate food. He got to a point where it costless for him to eat out than me to go grocery shopping. It was bad. I had a hard time at first with the idea of it, but I am at peace with my decision!

      You’re a great mom. Summertime is for popcicles and treats. Especially with 4, and a NEWborn! Your kids eat so healthy and so many veggies that you area perfect example of moderation! It’s when people feed kids processed foods for breakfast, lunch, dinner and on top of that give them candy and dessert. You know!?

      I can’t wait to get an update on your life!!!!!!!!!!! I still have a package for you, I am SO bad. It’s something I needed to made and send same day that’s why I have been behind. But I have somethng else really awesome I made for you and the little guy that I need to get over to you so I may just send that soon! Love you!

      August 2, 2012 at 1:29 pm
  • Reply Wendy

    I think it’s awesome you are trying to compromise with the husband. I have this problem too, you know, that he refuses to give up all meat. Luckily he’s very into chicken. But I just wish I could get him to eat more vegetables, especially in front of the toddler. He is working on it, but I agree, we need to try to eat together as a family.

    I’m no short order cook and while I have things I want to cook, I want to cook things they will eat. Healthy of course for them too. But I know I have to compromise as well.

    Proud of you for giving it a go. And no we sure don’t need to eat meat daily, but I definitely get what you are saying in this whole post.

    August 2, 2012 at 1:31 pm
    • Reply laury

      Thanks Wendy! Yes it was hard to get psyched up for at first, but now I just don’t think it’s a big deal. My main goal is to cut out sugar, and do what’s best for my family. This is how it has to be!

      I got your email. I love all of your questions. I am dedicating myself to answer every single one later tonight!

      Pickles are fine! But as his only veggie… we gotta find that guy a good recipe! PS-owe you some roasted veggie recipes!

      August 2, 2012 at 1:36 pm
  • Reply Wendy

    Well I’ve gotten him to agree to taste a spinach/blueberry smoothie so that’s progress! I think he’s more on board now that he sees how hard I’m working out everyday and all the fifty suggestions I’ve given him that you’ve told me.

    Hiring you as a trainer has helped not only me, but my whole family as well. I owe you a lot.

    August 2, 2012 at 1:41 pm
    • Reply laury

      It’s been my pleasure, Wendy! This is why I do what I do!!!!! I’m so happy you believe in yourself because you’re really doing awesome!

      August 2, 2012 at 5:11 pm
  • Reply Melanie

    I applaud you for going grain free and for deciding to stick to it, however I am bothered by the fact that you are promoting the lie that saturated fat does not promote heart disease and referencing Dr. Mercola as a reliable source. He is the most anti-veg guy out there and whole heartily believes and supports the absurd vision & diet plan of the Weston Price Foundation, which I won’t even get into here. His credibility is very questionable although he likes to think of himself and so do many other die hard meat eaters as a serious expert. I would highly suggest you read the book by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn and look at all of his years of research and actual success with reversing heart disease by using a oil free plant based diet. http://www.heartattackproof.com/. He’s not the only either. Check out Dr. McDougall and The Physicians Committee For Responsible Medicine. Seriously, please don’t propagate this total misconception. Yes grains can and do effect people very negatively and I’m with you on the wheat thing, but this nonsense about heart disease is becoming very wide spread through a very small bunch of quacks and people are buying into it because they love to eat their fat, their meat, their dairy and so on and want to believe it. Yes processed carb foods are bad and yes inflammation caused from a high diet of those foods is also a factor in heart disease, but saturated fat is the biggest culprit. Please, please for the sake of your own knowledge and all of those that follow this blog, look into this issue further.

    August 2, 2012 at 1:42 pm
    • Reply laury

      Hi Melanie, thank you so much for your input.

      I have read Dr. Esselstyn’s book a while back. Along with The China Study. That’s why it was hard to wrap my head around some og the newer information I have been reading.

      There is still so much debate on this and I am not an expert or a scientist, so it probably was irresponsible to just make the statement.

      I was just I was forwarded a few different articles (not just Mercola) about saturated fats from a friend that is an RD. As well as another friend who is a PhD that at first, I thought was crazy, but now am starting to see where she is coming from.

      PS–this was another article my friend sent me, I edited t link this one too:

      http://www.acsh.org/factsfears/newsid.3394/news_detail.asp

      All in all I am totally with you on dairy consumption, and think meats should be eaten in moderation. I still believe a plant based diet is the way to optimal health!

      I should have posted it more of a debate, and not as a statement.

      August 2, 2012 at 2:07 pm
      • Reply Melanie

        Thanks for being so awesome with your reply and I hope I didn’t come off to harsh. I’m a super passionate vegetarian and when I see this spreading over the internet it worries me because in a way it gives people a license to eat like crap…if you know what I mean. I have read the research and while much of it makes sense, there is still a very high and proven link to saturated fat and heart disease. While I agree that trans fats and processed wheat based products may also be to blame, it just seems irresponsible to outright say that saturated fat is not the cause. We’ve come too far with the amazing research between diet and disease to go down this path of “new” information like its the final authority. I also think that no matter what study we find to support our position on health there is always another study that proves the opposite. The key is to know what the background agenda is of that study and who is financing it…because sadly those factors do play a huge role. Thanks again!

        August 2, 2012 at 6:30 pm
        • Reply laury

          Hey, no worries. I can understand where you were coming from because I too am very passionate about my beliefs! I forgot to mention, I actually met Rip Esselstyn at the Forks over Knives pre screening 2 years ago. That’s where I got his fathers book

          I completely agree about studies and who’s funding them! As well as people having a license to just eat what they want. I can’t tell you how many times a news story comes out with something ridiculous and a client or family member says “oh I’m going to eat as many cookies as I want now, they said X, Y, Z”

          I have to remember to take many things into consideration when writing my posts. SO thanks for calling me out! Have a great night!

          August 2, 2012 at 9:10 pm
    • Reply laury

      I also want to reference a great post by my friend Lisa Beach on saturated fats you may want to read! http://www.thrive-style.com/2011/12/saturated-fat-benefits-and-coconut-cream-mousse/

      August 2, 2012 at 5:13 pm
  • Reply Julie (A Case of the Runs)

    Thanks for sharing. I think it’s great that you’re letting Ella decide on her own, and again, I don’t think you need to defend your choice at all.

    I’ve been eating less grain lately, but that kind of happened as a side-effect of calorie-counting and a preference to rather spend them on proteins than grains.

    I’ve always wondered if I would eat meat again. When I visit my parents (who irrevocably believe you need meat to live), they basically push meat on me, so sometimes I will space out and have a bite and be done with it, just because I know they won’t always be around and such. Besides that, I didn’t eat fish for 5+ years and picked it up again two years ago because it was getting to be a real pain eating while traveling and socially. I still only have it once or twice a month (I try to go light on the tuna and avoid chilean sea bass and tilapia), although I do take a high-quality fish oil now. So I guess there is always the possibility that I would return to eating meat. Since a lot of my decision has to do with the animal aspect rather than health, I’m not sure how this would play out over time. Admittedly, I do get a craving once in a while, mostly for beef or chicken. I think marrying into a Jewish family (however non-kosher) will probably take care of the pork part for me. 😉

    August 2, 2012 at 1:44 pm
    • Reply laury

      Yes, I never thought I would go back. After going through pregnancy with no cravings especially!

      But it does become tough with family and traveling and going out. And I just feel better when eating more protein. I was running out of ideas and getting sick of JUST eating veggies. Giving up grains meant giving up tempeh too so my diet would be a little too restrictive if I didn’t add more animal proteins in!

      August 2, 2012 at 5:09 pm
  • Reply Danielle @ Clean Food Creative Fitness

    I love this post! I went grain free for a long period of time last year and felt fantastic! I am trying to get back there again soon! Overall I just feel better when I eat more proteins and fats and get a large majority of my carbohydrates from fruits and vegetables! I am glad to see that you felt better without the grains too! It really is scary to see all the components being added into our foods lately! I typically try not to buy packaged foods with more than 5 ingredients on the label!

    August 2, 2012 at 2:36 pm
    • Reply laury

      under 5 if the way to go!!!

      Yes, we all feel better when we eat the way nature intended. Fod in it’s whole form from the earth!

      August 2, 2012 at 5:17 pm
  • Reply Robyn

    Fantastic up-date…thank you. I also have been grain-free for months now and very high raw,,,just what I want and makes me feel my best…

    August 2, 2012 at 2:37 pm
    • Reply laury

      Thanks, Robyn! Bravo to you too! I love all of the raw foods summer has to offer! I bet you feel amazing!

      August 2, 2012 at 5:04 pm
  • Reply The Delicate Place (@misathemeb)

    yay! i am so proud of you for this post 🙂 when i tell people that i eat paleo, they always assume that i must be gorging myself on meat when that is not the case! i do love me some eggs but meat is expensive! i care about the quality and cut so when i do buy it, i drop a good bit of cash so it’s not like i’m eating steaks every week haha.

    August 2, 2012 at 3:13 pm
    • Reply laury

      you probably eat more veggies than most!!!!!

      this was a scary post to write! even tough it’s my body you never know who you are going to offend with your views and choices

      August 2, 2012 at 5:05 pm
  • Reply Stacey

    This was extremely interesting! I completely agree with you despite I am not a grass fed animal girl. However we do butcher our own deer and get our beef from a local locker which are from our friend’s farm. Thanks for sharing the knowledge!

    August 2, 2012 at 5:55 pm
    • Reply laury

      You and my one client would get along. He grew up on a farm and says “Bl;ech, grass-fed…yuck those cows aren’t fat enough.”

      August 2, 2012 at 9:12 pm
  • Reply Purely Twins

    love this post! as you know girl a few months ago we added red meat back in, we still do not eat chicken (just does not appeal to us) but like you we are more careful of our food choices. more real food…healthy fats, greens that is the way to go! we have red meat maybe once a week or every two weeks. it is crazy to think how we ate a few years ago and now. both of us do feel this just feels right, now it about finding our own personal balance of it all.

    August 2, 2012 at 8:10 pm
  • Reply blackhuff

    I have a friend which are also not on any grains whatsoever because she beliefs that grains and sugar is connected, which is true. She also feel so much better since she is off grains totally.

    August 3, 2012 at 4:39 am
  • Reply Lisa

    I held off commenting at first, mostly because I was busy and I wanted to read the post more than once 🙂
    It so often seems that when I read your posts, I feel like you are writing the words straight from my brain!! I hope millions of people read this…

    The whole saturated fat controversy is so “sticky” …people (especially my vegan friends) get very passionate about the belief that sat (animal) fat is evil. I have to say that after reading approximately 100 (or so) books about diets and nutrition philosophies, I’d like to conclude nothing in an absolute way. Each person who write a book about a way to eat can find research to back up their position. Over time, I think my understanding about what people should eat has evolved to this….

    1. There are some universal truths (i.e. no one should eat trans fats, high fructose corn syrup, chemically processed foods, factory farmed meat…etc.).
    2. People with a super high micronutrient intake will have more energy and potentially will age more slowly.
    3. The US government over-recommends carbs and under-recommends fat.

    Beyond this, I truly believe that each individual is their own personal research project. Unfortunately, most people do not have the time or capacity to investigate their very best way to eat that leads to thriving. People always ask me what I do, and I know they’re hoping they can just follow my “plan” and have good results. I love to work with people to find their own very best plan—and even though I can say that most of my clients thrive on certain ways of eating, there are always variations based on genetics, schedule, health issues, goals….

    Side note: on the fat thing—-I am definitely a fan of fat, and the fact that dietary fat does not lead to being fat if consumed correctly and in situ with a healthy lifestyle overall. It also does not necessarily lead to disease, but then again, there are so many other aspects to consider (toxin exposure, sugar intake, stress…..). My diet is 60% fat or so… And I’ve never been more lean (well, except when I was 15) or muscular. This doesn’t mean everyone should eat this way, but it means that for a person who has tried lots of things, there may be one more thing to try 🙂

    I suppose that’s why people like you and me will always be in business—it’s difficult to navigate without assistance!

    …Sorry so long…you know I’m chatty on this topic!

    August 3, 2012 at 7:52 am
    • Reply laury

      I could talk to you all day long about this! In fact, I want to 🙂

      It’s so true that different people respond differently to different diets. I believe so much in the universal things to avoid. There is so much to navigate and although I have been in this industry for over 10 years and read so much I still get confused or torn sometimes as well! We can all only be experts in our own bodies. With knowledge and the right foods. We all have to find what works best for us. Like you, for me, cutting out grains, or lowering them extremely while adding in lots of fats has me eliminating one universal toxin, that is sugar!

      Talk soon 🙂

      August 5, 2012 at 8:20 pm
  • Reply Katie

    I’d have to respectfully disagree with this.

    I don’t think wheat and grains alone are our problem when it comes to heart disease and being generally unhealthy. I think it’s a mix of so many other things (lack of exercise, eating too much, smoking, drinking, etc). I know you mentioned you feel better without grains, and I know so many others out there that have an intolerance or even an allergy to grains, so in that case I completely agree and understand cutting it out of your diet. But to the others who have no problem digesting it, I often feel it’s extreme to cut it out as grains do provide nutrition most of our bodies need.

    It’s hard to agree that all-natural whole grains increase our blood pressure. Sure it can if those whole grains have HFCS in them.

    And I absolutely agree that today’s food is scary! Every food we can eat naturally seems to have a processed version of itself and we wonder why so many of us become ill. I think for the majority of us, instead of focusing on cutting out certain food GROUPS, we should focus on eating real, not processed, foods.

    I’d like to also add that I eat carbs at every meal, but I also eat an abundance of vegetables, lean meats, eggs, fruits, and calcium-fortified foods – and I’m not obese or even overweight. I exercise daily for typically an hour and try to walk everywhere. I really, truly believe that watching portion sizes and getting adequate amounts of physical activity is really the solution to so many of our problems today. Plain and simple.

    Thanks for letting me give my two cents! 🙂 I love discussions!

    August 3, 2012 at 2:52 pm
    • Reply laury

      Hi Katie,

      I never meant to come across that wheat and grains alone cause disease. Of course there are many factors. My point, however was to stress how dangerous sugar is and how over healthy eating fats are.

      I have been working on cutting down my sugar intake, really cutting back for over a year now. I have tried a few different things, yet I still got cravings. Finally, cutting out grains, which heighten insulin levels and cause me to crave more grains and sugar (I always believed in a protein, carb and fat together at each meal for optimal blood sugar control too) was the factor, for me, that really worked.

      I whole heartily believe in a balanced healthy lifestyle. Some people who eat clean, exercise daily ill still get cancer. Why? I am not sure. Environmental? Genetic? Some people who eat crap and don’t exercise will live until 90. Will they need medications? Most likely. Will some not? Perhaps. I think they are the exception to the rule, but I could never know who, why or how.

      Does eating certain healthy grains at each meal work for some? Absolutely. Clearly it does for you 🙂 I just wanted to share my experience with it and what works for me.

      Back to the heart disease, cancer thing. I was trying, again, to stress how bad sugar is for our bodies. There are compelling studies where young healthy teenagers, in a very controlled environment were given HFCS and it raised the very specific, BAD LDL cholesterol in their blood. Dr. Lustig has an amazing presentation that you can find on youtube about sugar/fructose and how it leads to heart disease and other health problems more-so than fat that we have been told for the past 35 years.

      As far as whole grains…and blood sugar….a slice of whole grain bread has a glycemic index of 72, meaning it spikes a high insulin response in blood sugar levels. Essentially worse than table sugar (Wheat Belly is a really great read if you’re interested) I just found that very interesting, and must admit, after reading the GI book several years ago was so confused that rating on the scale, because of all of he info on how healthy whole grains were,, and still ate whole grain bread. But now, looking back, my sugar intake was so high all those years. My sweet tooth fierce, and my battle with binge eating and disordered eating a struggle through the years. Was that all from eating whole wheat bread? I’m not sure? It was a combo of things. I have spent all of these years trying to get my body healthy and find ways to eliminate cravings for things that are toxic to my body. I love a good dessert every now and then. I WISH I was the type of person who could just take a bite. I never was. I always thought it was because I deprived myself and then went crazy…which is one truth. But over the past several years I have not had disordered eating patterns. I allowed myself to eat, ate clean and healthy with treats here and there. I was never “deprived.” However…that “need” for something sweet was always there. I still could only keep a little amount around. I still could not control myself around the sweets with portions. It was/is like a drug to me. Many factors could weigh in, but it is more prevalent just how much grains/wheat contribute to those cravings and “need” for sweets. I swapped out the processed ones many years ago for the natural ones, but still went crazy. Or the now and then once a week or every other going out to dinner I’d eat more than one should. While that’s fine every now and then, it made me feel awful, physically. Not in a “regretful” way, but like, “I feel like crap, hangover” way.

      Bottom line this was a pro-fat post, anti-sugar post in regards to what is working for me. Cutting out grains was a piece of the puzzle that has worked this past month. I struggled morally for the past few months with adding in more animal protein. Still am a little but I’m trying not to make it a big deal because it is something that is working so far. In many ways as I mentioned in my post.

      As you see, this comment turned into a novel 🙂 and I didn’t want my post to go from 1500 words to 5,000 by saying a lot of what I said here and getting into thoughts on the “big picture” of health. Which is lifestyle.

      Sorry for the uber long response! I love these debates too! Thank you so much for your input and weighing in! I find it very valuable to hear what readers think and believe. I overall do not disagree with you, but at the same time, I do strongly believe sugar is at the core of many health problems. Regardless of lifestyle. There is just so many books, seminars, and studies I have been seeing and reading that really make me believe it. That and the experiments I have done with how I personally feel and the behaviors triggered, surrounding my food choices!

      Thanks again 🙂

      August 5, 2012 at 8:16 pm
      • Reply Katie

        Hi Laury,

        Thank you for such a great response. I hope I didn’t come across rude in my comment, as that was far from my intention. 🙂

        Thank you to for clarifying a few things for me. I may have read the post a little too quickly here at work ( 😉 ) so I genuinely apologize if I read something wrong.

        I love your healthy approach to life! 🙂

        August 6, 2012 at 9:47 am
        • Reply laury

          Katie, you did not come off as rude at all! I don’t expect everyone to agree with everything I say all of the time! Frankly, that would be boring wouldn’t it? A year ago, I didn’t even agree with everything I believe in now. That’s the beauty of healthy eating and learning about your own body. My knowledge is always evolving! Learning never stops.

          Nutrition is such a diverse topic. So many beliefs, and so many aspects to consider. This is why I love discussion. It gives myself and opportunity to learn about others views, and others can learn a little more about why I believe what I do. Thank you for presenting your argument in a respectful, mature manner. 🙂

          August 6, 2012 at 2:50 pm
  • Reply Detoxing and Cleansing…Your {My} Body and Life

    […] one is kind of an in-between post), and one about fat. In the meantime, please go read my friend Laury’s post about going grain free and contemplating the topic of fat […]

    August 3, 2012 at 2:57 pm
  • Reply Maria@healthydiaries

    First I must admit, I’ve been wondering if you’d start to eat meat again. I figured you might since, you are a smart cookie and pay attention to your body. Like you my diet keeps changing. Last year I was all about eating less/no animal products and more veggies/fruits, whole grains and legumes. 1st I realized gluten was the culprit for years (whole life) of bloating and gas. I seriously thought my family just had a gas problems. (Sorry TMI?) Then I was always hungry since my meals were not satiating enough. So I basically slowly transitioned to a more Paleo (hate labels, but for sake of conversation) diet. I’ve been feeling great so hopefully I’ve found a diet that works for me 🙂

    I agree with some of the other comments that not the same diet works for the same person. We all need to figure out what works best by listening to our body and it seems like you are doing a great job at that 🙂 Have a great weekend!

    August 3, 2012 at 3:35 pm
    • Reply laury

      Thanks Maria for sharing your experience! Yes, it is such a puzzle to find what works. Honestly, personally, I wish I could be 100% vegan and not contribute to animal cruelty and environmental stress. I have such respect and love for those that are cruelty-free. Even organic meats can not be the most sustainable, or healthy. But again, we have to do what works best for us and choose the best that we can with what we’ve got. Eating a diet high in legumes, grains, etc just didn’t work for me, I had the same issues as you. I also craved a ton more sugar. When I was pregnant, my blood sugar was always great and blood pressure, etc. However, one day I came in after eating a multigrain tabbouleh and a juice with greens and fruit. My urine sugars were through the roof! I didn’t know what to make of it..the doc said it was from eating what I ate. Normal or not, it did send my sugar levels up super high, which was something to think about!

      PS—-congrats, Auntie!!!!!!!

      August 5, 2012 at 8:29 pm
  • Reply Meredith @ DareYouTo

    WOW it sounds like you and I are on exactly the same page! I went through what you’re doing now back in February/March. I, too, was vegetarian but ate eggs and fish. I eliminated grains and heavily processed foods and soon realized how what I thought was normal for my digestion *did not have to be*, and how much better I could feel all around. Recently, I started having grass-fed beef again, only a handful of times — easing in slowly, but I’m definitely in better tune with my body and how food affects it now.

    I’m glad you’re gleaning insights, too, from giving up grains, and thank you for the detailed information on sugar. I agree that when I eat protein and healthy fats, I feel completely satisfied and fueled. When I eat sugar and wheat, I continue to crave more only to feel sluggish after. Really great post, Laury!

    August 4, 2012 at 8:36 am
    • Reply laury

      It really does sound like we have had a lot of the same experience! Thank you for sharing yours. Like I said above, I wish veganism worked for me. No one will ever know just how much. I am sure many vegans would disagree with my diet change if they knew how much I wished I could “not” eat animals. It’s easy to say just don’t eat them. Trust, me, I felt, taste-wise, satisfied with different plant based meals. They just didn’t work. I will admit it was not satisfying going to restaurants without options. We enjoy eating out and it became increasingly difficult. It also was hard on our family, and I never had issues with bringing things. But physically….it just wasn’t working. I never thought I would go beyond eggs and fish, but here I am! Like you it will not be often I eat red meat and I still love my veggies! The ultimate goal is blood sugar control, and I couldn’t do that, with my diet, without feeling like I was restricting too much by not adding in more animal protein.

      August 5, 2012 at 8:34 pm
  • Reply Lisa

    Awesome, awesome post Laury! This was such a great read.
    I totally think that part of my disordered eating issues relate to the chemicals I was fed during my childhood. Its funny, because my mom actually fed me more processed food and didn’t restrict it because she was scared I would develop an ED if we were so focused on healthy foods (my aunt suffered from a terrible ED). And she told me it was one of her biggest regrets not restricting me more from processed foods. Of course, I don’t blame her in the slightest, its just weird that she thought the reverse, but it didn’t end up working out.
    I have added more chicken into my diet, but make sure it is organic, grass fed and all that jazz. I feel much better with my lowered sugar intake as well. I had agave one time in the past 3 years and I got SO sick from it. It was the weirdest thing.
    I also suffer from hypoglycemia and you do not need to eat sugar when your blood sugar is low, that is a load of crap (excuse my language), you need protein with a veggie or fruit, not pure sugar like my doctor suggested. That made me feel worse and made my blood sugar levels so much crazier!
    Sorry for the long comment, I’ll stop here hah.

    August 4, 2012 at 2:27 pm
    • Reply laury

      Lisa…I can completely and totally relate to you. I am afraid to get into it all because I would never want to hurt my mom/ come across as I was placing blame on how I was fed. Because I do not blame her at all. She did the best she could with the information she had. However, I do believe my eating disorder had to do a lot with A. lack of education about nutrition. And B. The foods I ate. Of course, the information about binging and links to sugars and how toxic artificial colors, etc are were not available when I was a kid. While in treatment, it was always about how no one could pin down “one reason” as to why anyone developed an ED. I just know personally, for me, my recovery had a lot to do with feeding myself well, and knowledge. Learning about healthy food and helping others learn and feel good about themselves!

      No comment’s ever too long 🙂

      August 5, 2012 at 7:45 pm
  • Reply Lauren @ Fun, Fit and Fabulous

    What a fantastic and honest post! I always appreciate you being so real on your blog. I went gluten-free back in November and can’t even believe how amazing I feel. I used to get migraines at least twice a month and I have only had 2 total since November! I don’t get ulcers in my mouth anymore, my feet don’t fall asleep randomly, and not more upset stomach! It’s really amazing how much power food has to help us feel better! I haven’t given up all grains, but I definitely eat A LOT Less! I try to include as much fresh veggies and fruit as possible, and keep meat to a minimum! Thanks again for sharing your thoughts, and I can’t wait to hear how grain free August goes for you! 🙂

    August 5, 2012 at 8:48 pm
  • Reply Marvelous in My Monday

    […] Laury at The Fitness Dish~30 Day Grain Free Update  […]

    August 6, 2012 at 4:48 am
  • Reply Kathleen @ KatsHealthCorner

    This is such an amazing post. Even today with eating gluten free (all I had was oat bran this morning — no other grains) I felt a WHOLE lot better than I do when I eat a lot of gluten/grains, etc. Thank you SO much for all of the hard work and dedication you put into your posts — they have really made a difference in my life. 🙂

    August 6, 2012 at 10:27 pm
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