In the first two decades of my life I never worried about what I ate. I was lucky enough to be able to eat what I wanted, while easily maintaining a healthy weight. After I had my children I had a hard time getting down to my pre-pregnancy weight and I did eventually succeed by trying the low fat diet. It was all the rage when I was 30. But it was impossible to sustain and as with most diets I grew steadily more hungry and eventually gave up. After that I embraced size acceptance and vowed to never diet or restrict any foods. Forever. I was determined. Even as my clothes grew tighter and I began to develop health issues I was not willing to make any changes.
Fifteen years went by… I was determined to love the super-sized me. Fast forward to December 2009… in an attempt to help my husband heal from Ulcerative Colitis, I began to research the Gut and Psychology Syndrome Diet. I'd heard of it a few years earlier, but mostly in context to children and autism. The “psychology” part did not impact me at all. But in reading the book the psychology part began to make more sense… I was feeling depressed – that could definitely be psychological… and I was so tired all the time, plus I had all sorts of weird little aches and pains. I decided to give it a chance, and now I wish I had not wasted fifteen years of my life. Years I can never get back.
Too bad I wasn't ready to make a change years ago. But, since I don't have a time machine, there's not much I can do. Regretting past choices serves no good purpose and is a waste of precious time. All I can do is press forward and be glad for what I have learned today.
Let me share the reasons with you why I wish I had been willing to change much earlier. I hope you will share with me in the comments what you wish you would have been willing to change years ago. Hindsight is a great thing, isn't it? 🙂
- Less Eating, Less Hunger. In addition to being on GAPS, I am also doing Dr. Jack Kruse's Leptin Reset. One of the “rules” is to eat a big protein breakfast consisting of at least 50 grams of protein. I love that this little trick leaves me satisfied and not hungry for four or five hours. Before starting GAPS I had to bring food with me and eat every 2.5 to 3 hours. After being on GAPS I was able to eat less often, but I still had to bring food with me. Now since the leptin reset I have my breakfast at home within thirty minutes of waking, and lunch is more like a snack – some days I don't eat lunch at all because I'm just not hungry. I might bring an ounce of almonds [affiliate link] or a tin of sardines with me. I love this because I don't have to spend a bunch of time heating my food and sitting down and eating. I can take a ten minute break and get back to work and since I don't take lunch I can leave half an hour earlier.
- No Desire for that Afternoon Siesta. I love that I'm not tired after I eat a meal. Before GAPS I used to feel sleepy every afternoon after eating lunch (which often consisted of plenty of carbohydrates). When I'd eat spaghetti for dinner I would feel lethargic the next day, for the entire day! It is nice not to have to need to find a way to combat that tired feeling.
- No More Overeating. I love that I don't overeat anymore. When I was doing body acceptance I battled myself for years, trying to get myself to eat smaller portions, trying to stop when I felt satisfied. I tried and tried to not overeat! I couldn't seem to stop myself from eating too much. The food tasted so delicious and I felt like I ate obsessively and could not stop myself. Especially if I got too hungry. I could eat the house then! I've since learned that foods that I love to that depth are probably foods to which I am allergic! I used to say that I loved pasta than my own mother! That is a truly addictive statement, wouldn't you agree?
- Off My Asthma Medication. I love that I was able to stop taking asthma medication, which I was on for eight years. It was such a hassle having to use it every day, getting the prescription filled, having to go to the doctor to get a new prescription every year or six months – for eight years! It's awesome being able to sleep at night with clear sinuses, and not being woke up because I can't breathe through my nose.
- Not Tempted To Eat Fast Food. I love that I am no longer tempted by fast food establishments. This is truly wonderful. My biggest temptation used to come when I'd have a run an errand at my job. For some reason I felt like I deserved a reward for having to leave the building so I would stop by Jack in the Box and get two tacos and a french fry, and sometimes a cheeseburger and chocolate shake. And then I would feel sooooo guilty for eating junk food. But the siren calls were more than I could bear, and I would find myself succumbing to the temptation. That is completely a thing of the past. One I stopped eating those foods that I am allergic to, I stopped having those wild desires for them.
- No More Aching Feet. My feet used to hurt me so bad. I'd been diagnosed with Plantar fasciitis and had been given some inserts to wear in my shoes. Not much could be done for this condition, I'd been told. I figured it was my lot in life because I can still remember my Grandpa hobbling around his restaurant and you could tell his feet were causing him great pain. My feet hurt so bad that I could only wear this one brand of men's casual wear shoes. They were black, and ugly and I felt like an old hag wearing them. I felt embarrassed in them, but I couldn't even stand to bear weight on my feet when they were bare. I heard myself one night in the middle of the night, groaning and leaning on the bed, it was pretty awful. Within two weeks of doing GAPS my feet stopped hurting and now I can even tolerate 3 inch heels! I've become one of those women who love shoes. Whoohoo!! 🙂
- Sustained Weight Loss. I love that I've lost weight, fairly effortlessly, and I've kept it off. I did not embark on GAPS to lose weight. Diets don't work, after all! Remember, I'd sworn off diets for 15 years! Although deep down inside I was scared to death that I would keep gaining weight every year. Most people who go on diets gain the weight back, we hear that all the time. But when I read Gut and Psychology Syndromeby Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride I felt hope that maybe I could get past the depression and fatigue, and I admit, I also secretly hoped I'd lose weight, but I wasn't counting on it. I was SO determined to never diet again!! I was a hard core body acceptance person, and I am extremely grateful that I finally became willing to make changes toward better health.
Your turn. Please leave a comment and let me know:
Do you pay attention to what you eat?
Do you think it matters?
Have you found success by changing your diet?
What are the changes you've seen?
What do YOU wish you had changed years ago?