diet started monday

written by alison

For those that haven’t seen my whining, my doctor ordered me to do an elimination diet to see if food allergies/reactions are part of the problem (not the solution like I told everyone when I neeeeeeeded a Diet Coke.) We chatted through the options of eliminating known culprits one at a time vs all or nothing and both of us agreed on an all or nothing approach since I’ve done Whole30 challenges before.

While this isn’t a Whole30, it is similar. There are some exceptions on my side because this isn’t about what cavemen ate or gut concerns, this is about getting these headaches to just go away. And before you go thinking the exceptions are fun, unless homemade beans are your idea of a party, stop.

Alright, so what are the rules — no grains, no dairy, no sugar (*exception for me allows natural sugars), no corn, no soy, no alcohol and as my bestie would say, no fun. I do get natural sugars as they are found in most vegan protein powders + slow cooked beans/legumes. I’m also doing my best to eliminate canned food entirely (mostly canned tomatoes) because there have been ties to headaches/migraines there.

What’s the goal? The goal is to eliminate all known headache triggers/causers and see if my headaches improve (along with the other lifestyle modifications we are making.) If they do improve, we add the triggers in one at a time to see specifically what the culprits are. If they don’t improve, you’ll find me under a pile of empty Diet Coke cans.

The game plan is to go for 4 weeks but extend it to 3 months if there’s no sign of improvement. Simply to flush out my system and really give this a chance to work it’s magic. So please don’t invite me to birthday parties with actual cake for the next month, thanks!

Day one of this shenanigans was actually pretty good. I liked all of the food I made, which is helpful, and didn’t feel hungry once. (Mainly because when you eat primarily veggies, you get to eat insane amounts of them.) My favorite thing was the slow cooked homemade garbanzo beans I slaved away over. I don’t like making bold statements, but I’m going to do my best to never buy canned garbanzo beans again. The homemade kidney and pinto beans are ok, but not amazing. Did I mention I spent the entire weekend making a month’s supply of beans?

Aside from my new love affair with chickpeas, I enjoyed a veggie omelette, world’s largest veggie salad with homemade vinaigrette (did you know almost everything pre-made has sugar in it?), a veggie and bean sauté topped with avocado and a side of baked fries. Since I hadn’t made my own ketchup, I used mayo as a dipping sauce. Because yup, it’s allowed.

Mayo > Ketchup. Water < Diet Coke. I guess this is about tradeoffs. And before you go asking me if I'll get enough protein, slow your roll. Yesterday I consumed 79g of protein. I'm guessing you don't know how many grams you had or how many are recommended for your activity level. So don't worry, I've got this. And yes, I am tracking every teaspoon of food I ingest. I am literally my own science experiment. If I'm being honest, I'm currently excited about this endeavor. I always want to cook more because I love my kitchen and making things with my hands. And the tower of veggies in the fridge makes me grin from ear to ear. The only part that has me slightly terrified is going out to eat/social gatherings. Here's the thing (cover your eyes coach), whenever I did the Whole30 challenges, I cheated. I wouldn't stress over what my veggies were cooked in at the restaurant, nor if there was sugar in the salad dressing. But now, sorry for dramatics, my life kinda depends on this. If me being a total stickler for food prep for 4 weeks gets to the bottom of my 2 year headache, then you can bet your ass I'm going to do it. As tempting as it is to stay inside and not socialize for the next 1-3 months, we already have a family outing planned for Saturday. If you pray, please pray for them. HA! Kidding! I'm already game planning the snacks I can bring and scoping out places that have salads loaded with veggies. Whether I bring my own dressing and beans like a weirdo is yet to be decided. I'll keep you posted.