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Diet Changes Lately. Maybe.


Hows everyones week going?! Mine has been good, cluttered but good. We've been half organizing the house-- but it's still mostly in that in-between shambles state and its driving me nuts. I don't function well in disorganization and clutter. Not at all. My stomach has been a bit of a mess-- but Marlowe's too-- so we're blaming it on Disney World food. Did I mention Disney World here? We went up to magic kingdom for Marlowe's birthday. Good time, yucky food. The next night both of us had some stomach complaints going on and it only got worse the next day. Marlowe also said her best friend came back from Disney World this week with a stomach bug and left school throwing up. I find that really curious. So the combo of it all has me in a rather emotional state. Overwhelmed and underwhelmed, but not terrible by any means. But anyway, yeah, my stomach is never great, but it functions well enough these days. Well enough by who's standards? I'm not really sure. For me, I mean, I'm happy because it's better than before-- but man, I want everything to function so much more. And I know I was just saying all this in yesterdays post-- but sometimes it really bums me out that I don't feel better. And this week has been one of those weeks where I've been focusing on that quite a bit. You know, emotions.

So I mentioned about a month or two ago that I was looking into making serious diet changes this season. I go back and forth a lot about whether or not I'll go through with it though. The biggest factors in my hesitancy seems to be comfort, habit, and convenience. I've been ever so slowly changing my diet, but have yet to go full force. Sometimes I think, "This change will be fine will be great. This will be beneficial and make me feel wonderful."  But then sometimes, like when I get home from France for instance, I think "but maybe I should just drink wine again and keep going with how I'm feeling now. It'll all be fine." And maybe it all will be fine, but like I said, I don't want to feel fine. I feel fine about feeling fine up until I stop and think: BUT I WANT TO FEEL GREAT.

So what am I thinking about? What more could I possibly change in my diet? Well, I'm thinking about transitioning into a full on fruitarian. At least for a few months. Just to see how it goes. It certainly won't hurt. Fruit and vegetables can obviously give you all the nutrition you need and more-- the only thing I really have to lose is the comfort of my current food habits and feelings. I love warm food-- it gives me this nourishing feeling like no other. I fear I won't feel completely nourished with all raw and cold food. But I don't know. I think like anything else it might just be a matter of breaking the habit of embracing change and finding comfort in new things. Like when I thought there was no way I could give up cheese 10 years ago. Or how the idea of veganism was completely ludicrous to me 15 years ago. But here I am 10 years later without ANY desire to ever eat cheese again. That comfort feeling-- that craving for it-- it's gone.  And I know, I'm 100% certain that my body is healthier without it. So how do I know that this can't be the way my future looks with raw food? The reality is that I don't know. Not until I try it. I've been reading A LOT about it. Trying to mindfully process how my body will process everything. Trying to look into the science of it and whats the proper way to do it-- because believe it or not there are apparently ten million different ways to be a raw vegan. And right now, I'm leaning towards the high carb, low fat way. I in no way want to cut out fats completely-- I love coconut and avocados waaaaaaayyy too much, but I want to eat fats at the right times-- properly combining them with the right foods. I used to have intense sugar rushes and drops-- even fruit sugar-- but I've been playing around with it-- and the science behind the low fat thing seems to be right. As long as I haven't consumed any fat before loading up on fruits I don't have the highs or the drops. My body feels stable. My body feels good with the fruit! So I just try to keep my fat intake towards the end of the day after I've consumed most of my fruit and take it from there.

Anyway, I don't want to babble too much about this stuff right now (unless you guys really want me to of course). But the plan for now is to try to eat completely raw vegan for as much of the day as I can. And then have lighter cooked meals towards the end of the day when I can't put up with chewing or drinking another raw vegetable. Just slowly transition into it all. Alex actually says he's willing to try it all out for a while too. And for Marlowe? Well, I'm working on adding more raw vegan meals into her diet, but I don't have plans of having her joining the raw vegan wagon completely. She'll still be vegan, duh. But not completely raw. It'll be much harder to convince a six (!!) year old to eat a raw kale salad-- so for her, I'd rather have her eat cooked greens than no greens (of course!). We have been focusing on more appropriate food combining for her though. Which really doesn't mean that much for her except that now I don't let her snack on raw fruit throughout the day. The rule for miss Marlowe is she can have as much fruit as her heart desires until she eats cooked food. After she eats cooked food, no more raw fruit for the day. Pretty simple right? If she wants to eat 40 mangoes, fine, but she's gotta do it in the morning pre-cooked food. 60 bananas? Have at it, girly. When she's had her fruit / raw fill-- we're back to regular well-rounded cooked meals until the end of the day. Wake up doing it all over again. We've been doing this for the past two months or so and with the exception of a small travel bug, this has been really great for her gut. She hasn't had any bloating or gas pain (which she used to have a bit of) and she's healthier than ever. Knock on wood-- but she def. hasn't caught as many bugs (or any actually) this school year at all. Basically the same diet, just slightly tweaked schedule I guess you could say.

So yeah, the biggest thing around here is always making sure we get more than enough calories (I'm no longer in my grossly thin post c. diff body. My post c. diff jeans are actually tight now, hooray!) and making sure we're combining food properly. We always eat well rounded-- so there's no issues there. Now I'm just trying to change the way I look at my meals. I still want big, veggie filled plates of food-- but I'm training myself to find comfort in raw food. To find health and new life in vibrant, unheated vegetables. For me, this is pretty big. Never did I think I would feel like I needed to eat raw vegan--- not longer than a two week cleanse anyway. But now, I think it's time. I have nothing to lose. And I just want to feel better. I expect to have icky detox symptoms (I did when I tested it out a few months ago), but I hope to have long term affects. The worst thing that happens is that I don't feel better-- and I go back to how I eat now. I guess the question right now is 'when'. When is the right time? When will I be emotionally ready? I know I just need to pick a time and start. And I guess for the transition I'm looking at it the same way I looked at my transition into veganism: with zero pressure. I'm sure there will be times where I'm not perfect. Times when I opt for tacos or wine or whatever. And that's okay. Really, I'm totally okay with it-- but I do want to try to do this as fully as I physically and emotionally can.. Even if I can manage a 80% daily change, I'm super happy.

If you guys are interested I'm totally happy to document more of the process and what I eat and whatever else a long the way.  Just let me know. I'm going to journal it for myself. I know I already had to knock off nuts from my can eat list in the past few months. Corn is still on the fence. I have to see what my body really thrives on. What makes me feel best and worst and go from there.

Oh and on the books I've been reading-- THIS is the one that most inspired me. While the title is super focused on crohns and colitis, the reality is the diet is for someone with ANY illness. It's no secret that food is the primary cause to most illness-- that genetics are really only 10% cause of disease. We all hold the gun, diet pulls the trigger. I'm a great example to how diet and drugs can make or break you. But I really hope to be a great example of something better... of more 'food healing'. I hope I hope I hope. Also, to be completely honest, the authors views can be a bit intense, but I really found the whole book fascinating. A lot of parts on health and sickness really spoke to me. My body is still constantly giving me warning signs that there is still a problem that needs to be addressed (random fevers, inflamed painful gums, random body aches from time to time on top of the whole random stomach turnovers)-- and I'm ready to fully (okay, mostly) address it (maybe). I'm not holding myself to it. And it might take me months to really transition, but I'm certainly going to try!

Wish me luck. xoxo

36 comments:

  1. I honestly want to transition more to a full-fledged vegetarian and fruitarian way of eating as well, with adding some whole grains here and there. I've been struggling with hard to diagnose stomach issues for the past two years, and gone through elimination diets, with no help at all.
    However, too many dieticians and nutritionists keep telling me that I won't get enough protein without eating the required meat, or tofu. And my other issue is that on a fixed income, I find it really, really expensive, cause most of my grocery shopping ends up being produce, which is pretty costly.
    How do you keep it budget friendly to eat this way?

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    1. protein: i totally recommend you check out the book. he explains the protein absorption/body needs thing quite well. Better than I can. The doctors put a lot of fear in me about protein after the c. diff weight loss. But I think it can be done well and correctly on a raw vegan diet.

      expense: to be completely honest, and not at all helpful, this is one of my biggest fears too. grains and legumes are cheap. loads and loads of fresh fruit and veg are not. I'm planning on making my mornings be made up of mostly banana intake which are cheap=-- especially herein Florida so that brings down cost a bit. But really, I'm just going full in and looking at it as a credit card to my health. We won't be buying oils, salts, or any processed foods anymore so that should help somewhat balance it out. hopefully.



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    2. BANANAS??? Have you changed your mind? :)

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    3. I'll definitely get the book, to look into the protein viewpoint/options. Thanks.
      As far as the expense, I understand the concept the credit card to your health, it's just hard to look at it that way when you don't always have the income to put the money out in the first place, you know what I mean?
      And I live in a pretty small town, so some of the whole grains and legumes are pretty hard to find and have to be ordered online anyways and end up being pretty expensive all by themselves.
      And yes, bananas are a staple. lol
      The hard part I find is when I'm not feeling good, and bad symptoms take over and I don't feel like cooking, it's much easier to reach for something processed, unfortunately. It's hard to get out of that mindset. :(

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    4. sydney: I KNOW! CRAZY RIGHT!? The end is near!

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    5. Deanna: I totally understand. We don't eat much processed foods over here-- but it's still hard for me to change habits. Like making a pot of black bean soup over eating a leafy salad. Have you looked into co-ops in your neighborhood? I'm hoping by cutting out things like oils, and canned beans, and whatever else that we'll almost sort of level out in for expense. hopefully.

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  2. I totally want to read more - please continue to document here and update us on how the schedule change continues and how you're feeling. Food really does heal.

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  3. A really interesting post Drea, I shall be fascinated to hear how it goes. I am in a place of wanting to feel great as well, not just okay. Also contemplating some changes. I know I will feel much better for them, but as you say, habits are hard to break. But I've done it before and loved how I've felt. I think there are several foods that I would be better off without, possibly soya and oats, that sort of thing. It would be good to try and work out what I'm fine with and what I'm best without. I've found this post really inspiring, you've got me thinking about diet a lot more and wanting to implement change without any more prevarication. Thank you! Hope you and Marlowe get over your bugs soon. CJ xx

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  4. Interesting! One thing I might caution against is becoming too unbalanced in terms of liquids. My mom's doctor said she was too "liquidy" a few months ago because of how many smoothies and drinks and soups she was having. Soooo weird but maybe look into that? Also have you read Eat to Live?? It's the nutritarian diet - mostly plants (it does allow for some animal products)... surely nothing revolutionary for you but the science and disease-fighting abilities it discusses are really interesting.

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    1. yes, def! Liquids def. don't fill me. I admire people who can juice cleanse without issues. I enjoy chewing way too much. Alex gives me a hard time because I even chew smoothie bowls haha. Will look into book! Thanks!

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  5. I am feeling this post so much right now, I realy hope you *will* blog about the changes as you go. I am also in the midst of tweaking my vegan diet right now, too, due to iron deficiency. Going grain free and adding some overt fats back after trying McDougall and rapidly declining over the course of a month to panic attacks(hadn't had em in years!) and brain fog, low iron levels and general ickiness. I hope we can both figure out what feels the best for us. I'm going to follow my intuition, no more books. Like you said, can't hurt!

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    1. have you tried spiraling? I swear it got my through the post cliff iron drop. I've been vegetarian for 16 years now, and have yet to have iron issues. I attribute it to mostly the amount of legumes, but def the spiraling this past year!

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    2. No, what is it?! I need to know more! I am, at this point, considering a more high raw, high fat vegan path. But my anemia is due to blood loss after I had my daughter and refusing a blood transfusion, not due to diet per se, didn't want to give anyone the wrong impression, being vegan is super safe and healthy. I just made a personal choice about blood transfusion and have had a very hard time recovering, even after 8 years!
      Let me know what spiraling is and I will probably do it yeaterday, lol!

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    3. No, what is it?! I need to know more! I am, at this point, considering a more high raw, high fat vegan path. But my anemia is due to blood loss after I had my daughter and refusing a blood transfusion, not due to diet per se, didn't want to give anyone the wrong impression, being vegan is super safe and healthy. I just made a personal choice about blood transfusion and have had a very hard time recovering, even after 8 years!
      Let me know what spiraling is and I will probably do it yeaterday, lol!

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  6. Very interesting. I've recently read a few books both for and against going totally raw. Look forward to hearing how you go. One question, has your candida totally gone? How will a huge fruit in take go with that?

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    1. Yes! So I had worked on the candida + other issues for a while now-- and i can say I don't have any candida symptoms anymore. So in the book I read/ linked I checked out a few other resources they mentioned and in regards to candida everything they said about low fat + no candida issues seems to make sense--- at least in my body so far. In the times I Was eating high fat, the candida issues were more noticeable. But without the high fat content in your body, your body quickly absorb and uses the natural sugar instead of feeding the yeast. I'm sure I'm not doing a great job explaining it at all. But basically thats the part where the low fat comes in. I eat my fats towards the end of the day when I've moved more away from fruits and into vegetable meals because then I don't get any sort of blood sugar spike + feed candida. If the candida were to come back, I'd obviously mention that here, but def. hoping it doesn't!

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    2. Wow how interesting, I never knew anything about a high fat diet contributing to candida. I recently had to take antibiotics (for the first time ever!!) and now despite taking probiotics and eating my weight in sauerkraut I have awful stomach pains every time I eat, so that along with my lifelong battle with candida has me watching your diet journey with great interest! I'm still breastfeedig though and always struggle to keep the weight on so I don't think I can afford to cut out the fats!

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  7. Be keen to hear how it goes! Id also LOVELOVELOVE to know if you have any tips for making sure diet includes all the good nutrients and vitamins etc my body needs? I'm good on the 'veg at every meal=good, donuts at every meal=not so good' but after that I get a bit overwhelmed, it seems like you need to eat so many different foods to get all the things we need, which gets expensive and just too much food to actually eat in a day!
    I have few symptoms which I think = not enough vitamins (super sleepy, dry skin, etc) but I don't know how to include all I need as a vegetarian (sometimes pescatarian) without resorting to multivitamins (which I don't really want to do) or spending a zillion dollars and eating 300 different foods a day (cant do!).
    Any advice would be super appreciated :)

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    1. So there are a good amount of foods, specifically fruits that have A LOT of what we need. The key is eating them raw. Like raw celery has your sodium, so there's no need to have any table salts in your diet. I personally don't enjoy raw celery, but I am going to start adding it to more smoothies and stuff to get the nutrients out of it. I guess the big thing is that cooking food changes the chemistry, making a lot of the nutrients different. Some things are easier to absorb by the body when cooked, most things not as much. I think the key is just to mix it up. Have as many colorful veggies as you can and avoid the stuff with little nutritional value as much as possible!

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  8. I really hope you blog about how the transition goes! Reading about your diet and the ways in which you think about it are super interesting. Best of luck!

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  9. And I think from all these responses, we've definitely determined that you can keep posting and documenting about these diet changes. We are all VERY interested!

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  10. I hope you will keep us updated! I hope this is something magical for you and your fam that makes you all super healthy and happy! That said, I must say, reading this made me really want to make your bread garlic soup ;) ;)

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  11. Hi Drea, I am wondering if you could create another post where you dive more into the benefits and science behind eating fully raw. Or link us to resources that you find to be convincing and inspiring. I am thinking of doing raw until 4 to solve some health issues as well. :) Thanks.

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    1. For now, I'd say the book I listed is 100% the best resource I found. I did stumble upon a lot of talks and videos though, but didn't save them! I'll have to fall into the internet hole again, find and link them :)

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  12. Hi! Can you explain the Marlow rule - only eating raw fruit before she eats cooked meals? What's the thinking behind that. I'd love to know. Thanks! x

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    1. Yes! So fruit ferments A LOT faster than cooked foods. It basically goes into your body and gets used up. But when you have cooked foods especially harder to digest foods (meat is a great example, though she doesn't eat meat of course!) then the fruit has to sit in your body, rotting, while it waits for the other food to finally get digested and pass. This creates problems like candida, gas, and digestive problems in general! It's really helped her tummy gas issues!

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  13. I feel like you're talking directly to me on this post. I struggled with digestive issues for a number of years and then got it fixed and was good for like 2 years and now I find myself back in the same situation again. It's so frustrating. I'm going to pick up this book. I hope you continue to talk more about this!

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    1. I think you'll find it really fascinating. I mean, I've read so much on so many different diets the past two years and I find so many different diets to make so much sense-- but I really want to give this a go and see what happens! Will def. document more. Finally starting writing down food lists + health/mood in a journal today!

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  14. Yes...totally want to hear more about this. I am another person living with digestive issues, for past 6 years. It is frustrating to say the least! I can be going along fine for months and then hit a rough patch for weeks. Just last week was horrid but then the weekend was calm, I don't understand what was different?!
    When you talk about eating raw food and wondering if you'll miss warm cooked foods, have you thought about how the whole cold vs warm thing works in relation to chinese medicine or ayurveda? Have you ever done a quiz on yourself to see where you fall in ayurveda, to know which of the principles you fall into? I'm no expert by any means, just things I've learned here and there and going to an acupuncturist for fertility. They really want you to eat warm foods and keep your hands and feet warm, which helps to keep the blood flowing centrally versus away from the center to your feet or hands. The warm thing also is good for digestion, to keep "the fire" going.
    I don't know, wish I knew the perfect answer. Ultimately, our bodies are all different and respond to everything differently. Good luck on whatever you decide :)

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    1. Hi!

      So in TCM--- I am on the cold side and have been told time and time again to eat warming foods. My acupuncturist would yell at me every visit--- even when I was eating warming foods, haha. She said dI over ate. She was right about the over eating and I felt better when I ate less :) I think it helps living in south florida. I don't know if I could do the raw thing being in a cold environment.

      For ayurveda--- I actually fall into the trip-doshic range, but more on the side of vata. And was eating for the vata constitution-- since it mostly did fall in line with the warming theory of TCM.

      I feel that both diets did help in a lot of ways-- and make a good amount of sense, but didn't fully heal my gut the way I'd like it to. I think the diets would be fine for someone in a normal scenario-- but after the c. diff and mass amounts of drug garbage in my body, I think I need a bit more than those diets :) Ideally those diets would work for everyone, but the science behind going completely raw/fruitarian was just too interesting for me not to try it for at least a while! So for now I'm trying it! If anything, I'll probably end up going to mostly raw and then for dinner, I'll be having warming foods. Thats what I've to be doing partially doing now as I transition :)

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  15. Always take care of your body! We still await more of your adventures. But for now, I do hope you recover from this. Good luck!

    Migration Expert US

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  16. Wow I am so so curious in the eating-food-in-a-certain-order idea. What made you start to let M have all of the fruit, until cooked food? I have never heard of this before! I have some tummy issues and I could definitely stand to learn a thing or two about this...thanks for sharing!

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