Then I should be the picture of health! I mean, seriously! I eat healthy! I have tried every diet out there hoping it will heal me and give me my energy back. I recently went a whole year without sugar, grains, fruit except lemons, starchy vegetables including butternut squash, potatoes, and carrots, legumes, dairy except ghee, alcohol, vinegar, and caffeine. You're probably wondering, well what did you eat? I ate pretty much the same thing each day: eggs for breakfast with herbal tea, a BIG salad for lunch with protein usually chicken, lots of different vegetables, nuts or avocado, a homemade salad dressing of lemon juice, garlic and olive oil, and for dinner I'd have protein (pork, chicken, fish, etc) with a salad, and a veggie (broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts,etc), and for snacks I'd munch on raw almonds.
Well as you can imagine, that diet got VERY old! I actually loved my big salads and still eat them all the time. But I really was getting bored of eggs. And something about just having a spinach omelette without cheese and toast is not very satisfying. It was also very hard to go out to eat or socialize. If I was invited to a wedding, instead of a clutch, I would have needed to bring a cooler filled with my salad and hard boiled eggs! (Luckily, I never had to do this!)
I didn't just wake up one day and decide to torture myself by cutting out my favorite things such as red wine, chocolate, bread, pasta and cheese. I, like all people who suffer from CFS, researched thoroughly and was constantly looking for the cause of my illness. I was convinced that my problem stemmed from a systemic candidiasis. I took the candida questionnaire and found myself answering yes to a few of the questions (I feel sick all over, was on the birth control pill for a few years). However, there is no accurate test that can confirm this problem. Instead, through diet, probiotics, and antifungals, it will just go away.
Well I originally started on a less strict candida diet, which included some low sugar fruits such as green apples, grapefruit, berries, and some dairy such as yogurt, sour cream, and cream cheese. When I wasn't finding results, I decided to keep going stricter. I researched and found that some people with candida can't tolerate any dairy or any fruit. And so it began...
Well in September, a year after I started this strict diet, I threw in the towel. One of the reasons was because my cholesterol was way too high. Also, I just was so sad about foods that I couldn't eat. So at first I added in some green apples, a little bit of quinoa, some hummus... Oh it was so good to be back. It was fun to add variety to my diet. I still ate very healthy. I continued with my salads for lunch, but also added in healthy homemade soups. I even went out to eat with Steve and ordered something right off the menu (without giving the waiter five alterations to my meal). On my birthday, in early October, we went out and I had BREAD and CHOCOLATE! I was really living it up.
A few weeks after I changed up my diet; I started to feel worse. I was also very busy and not exercising as much. In the summer I was actually taking a regular yoga class, and now I'm back to gentle yoga. Also, in the summer I had gradually worked up my exercise program. I was walking 22 minutes a few days a week. So what happened? Am I supposed to go back to eating nothing but roast chicken and broccoli? Is there really anything wrong with having a bowl of oatmeal? Or is it that I stopped exercising on a regular basis? Or is it beyond my control?
As much as I hate to say it, I mean need to go back to my strict diet for a few weeks. Then gradually add things in one at a time and pay attention to how I feel. I really don't want to do this. After all the chocolate is gone after the holidays, my home may once again be a sugar free zone.