It became apparent to me and my doc a few months ago that after several months of treatment (gluten/dairy free diet, several supplements) I wasn’t getting better. At all. I was feeling a bit better due to a change in diet and a little more energy from the supplements, but I still felt like crap a majority of the time.
The problem with Hashi’s is that you can’t really pinpoint what it is that feels like crap. You know when you’re coming down with the flu and just feel off? An overall feeling of exhaustion, grumpiness, fuzzy head, etc? That’s what living with thyroid disease is like. Nothing is working right. Sad to say, I was getting to the point where it didn’t seem like I could be normal again.
My doc, the amazing and wonderful Dr. Brian Jenkins, suggested that I do a 30 Day “Gut Repair Diet.” You can do the diet for as little as 3 days and as many as 60 for the most progressed cases. I needed something a bit more extreme – so 30 days for me. In addition to the diet restrictions, I’m on several supplements to support my overall digestive health. (I’ll talk more about those in a later post, but they’re not terribly appetizing and what I really want to talk about is food. I don’t want to scare you off!)
And so here I am. You could call what I’m on a restricted Paleo diet – as if Paleo isn’t restricted enough. What I can’t eat – grains, potatoes, nightshades, mushrooms, dairy, soy, eggs, sugar (including honey), high glyemic fruit (mango, pineapple, grapes, raisins), beans, seeds, nuts, legumes of any kind, gluten “compounds” (i.e. the crap you find in processed food), alcohol, coffee, processed food in general, anything from a can.
What I can eat – most veggies, poulty, fish, meat, low glycemic fruit (apples, pears, oranges, etc.), coconut, fermented foods (sauerkraut, kimchi, coconut yogurt, kombucha) olives and olive oil.
Yes, the list of what I can’t eat is much longer than the list of what I can eat.
But, I’m always up for a challenge! The trick I have found is to always make more food than I’ll eat. Leftovers are my friend – and usually my breakfast.
Here’s what I ate for breakfast this morning:
Looks yummy, right? And probably not like the breakfast you’re used to at all! That’s leftover kabocha squash and sauteed swiss chard from dinner last night with a cut up Applegate hot dog. I microwaved the whole bit for about 2 minutes and voila! Breakfast!
I know you’re probably wondering how I can eat hot dogs if I can’t eat all that other stuff. Applegate meat products are AWESOME – they don’t have any fillers, gluten, casein, nitrates, etc. Basically, this is just pre-cooked meat. It’s good to have something that’s already cooked around when you have to cook everything else.
For lunch today I had a leftover hamburger from some I made the other day for dinner with the sauteed onions I made to go with it on top of red leaf butter lettuce and avocado dressed in olive oil, lemon juice and sea salt. Not too shabby, right?
And here’s what I had for dinner last night:
Yep, that’s the squash and swiss chard that would become my breakfast!
I will say this about eating this way. It’s work. I love to cook, so that isn’t an issue, but it would be if you couldn’t find your way around a kitchen. And it’s expensive. But I’m frequenting my farmer’s market and I’m lucky to have two wonderful butcher shops (Sacramento Natural Foods Co-Op and Taylor’s Market) close by. And I’m not spending money on happy hours, cocktails, or dinners out. In the long run, I’ll probably save money.
Also, after only 9 days I would do just about anything to have a glass of wine and not be cheating. I miss my vino.
Have you done a crazy diet like this? What are your favorite recipes?