Have you considered spring cleaning your diet?
Now, before you roll your eyes and think “oh great another eat your way to a better health blog post”, understand that I do not believe that diet alone can cure or improve a disease, chronic or otherwise.
I do, however, believe that everybody could feel a little better or at the very least, not any sicker, if they would hunt down their dietary triggers and avoid them.
*Disclosure: I am not a medical professional. I am not issuing medical advice. Consult with your doctor before making any changes to your diet or treatments. This blog post contains affiliate links. I may earn a small commission to fund my coffee drinking habit if you use these links to make a purchase. You will not be charged extra, and you’ll keep me supplied in caffeine. It’s a win for everyone.
Disinfect Your Diet
Whether someone has a #chronicillness or not, whether they think food is contributing to #chronicpain and #fatigue or not, everyone should take a look at what they are eating.Tweet
I am not pushing an all-juice diet or cleanse.
Nor am I suggesting that everyone should be vegans or vegetarians.
I am not suggesting that everyone cut out gluten, dairy, meat, etc.
Instead, I am going to share a simple plan that I used to identify my food triggers.
Spring Clean Your Diet with a Journal
Create a spreadsheet or use a journal to record everything you eat.
Record daily how you feel when you wake up, at midday, and in the evening.
Note how many hours of sleep you achieved and how you slept. Did you need a nap?
How is your mental health? Note what made you happy/sad/depressed/anxious/etc.
Find the culprit
Refer to your food journal whenever you notice that you’re experiencing increased pain, inflammation, rashes, headaches, and/or fatigue.
If you have noted a day with increased inflammation, look at what you at before you noticed.
Compare that with the days prior and after to see if it happened again. If it did, compare what you ate.
You may be someone who doesn’t feel the effect of a particular food or ingredient right away. In that case, you may want to look back a day or two.
If a particular type of food doesn’t jump out, look at the ingredients.
There was a time when I thought I had a gluten intolerance, yet it didn’t make sense because not every gluten product bothered me. I researched further to discover why.
The results were that I didn’t have a gluten intolerance, but instead, high fructose syrup turned out to be my fatigue/inflammation/pain trigger.
Spring Clean Your Diet by Cutting Out the Crap
Once you find the food type or ingredient that your body doesn’t tolerate, you will want to eliminate it.
In my case, I didn’t have to give up bread products.
I do, however have to make sure that any baked goods I do eat aren’t made with high fructose syrup. I find it best to play it safe and avoid it when in doubt.
Diets are not one size fits all. Not everyone should avoid dairy, meat, baked goods, etc… #chronicillness #chronicpain #inflammation #dietTweet
Diets are not one size fits all. However, to speed up the process of finding your triggers, you may want to follow a restrictive diet at first. This will limit how many different foods and ingredients you are having to compare.
I would give each diet at least two weeks before adding other foods back in. Here are a few diets you may wish to try:
I chose to start with where I was at and how I was living by not following any specific diet. Personally, I found it faster and easier. Another plus is it was a real reflection of how I ate and lived.
My results showed that I experienced more pain, inflammation, and fatigue when I consumed high fructose syrup, artificial coloring and flavoring, and high levels of citric acid.
Choosing to avoid your triggers isn’t going to cure you, but it will make your life less painful than it has to be.
Avoiding #food that triggers #inflammation and #chronicpain won’t cure you. But giving your body less to fight is always a win! #chroniclifeTweet
What foods or ingredients are triggering your chronic symptoms?
After you spring clean your diet, try cleaning up some other areas of your life!