Sunday, April 26, 2015

Elimination diet in the U.S.

If you've read my introduction post or FAQ post, you know that I'm experimenting with what I can and cannot digest well by doing an elimination diet. At first I just cut out dairy, gluten, and eggs because those are all very common problem causers. I couldn't really do it though, because these ingredients often showed up in the school lunches I had to eat at work. So my recent move back to the U.S. has been a great opportunity to finally eliminate these.
In addition to dairy, gluten, and eggs, I realized a few months ago that peanuts are probably a problem as well, so I've cut those out. Peanuts are not actually in the nut family, but are legumes. Another legume that commonly causes problems for people is soy. Living in Japan, it was nearly impossible for me to avoid soy, but back in the U.S. I figured I'd try eliminating and testing that as well.
With peanuts and soy already cut, it seemed like a good idea to eliminate all legumes. After all, beans, beans, the magical fruit... And tooting is one of the main symptoms I'm trying to fix with all this diet experimenting :P
(Oops, I just realized that peas are legumes too. Guess I haven't been eliminating that for three weeks already like I thought I had...)
Finally, both caffeine and alcohol most definitely affect my digestion, so I've eliminated those as well.
To help anyone who is cooking remember all this (including myself) I made a list on a white board and put it by the stove.

It's easy to update, so once I've successfully eliminated all of these foods and have at least one week symptom free, I'll start testing them in small amounts, one by one, and keep track on the white board what I'm doing.
I also keep a daily food diary about what I'm eating, how my stomach feels and how well I'm digesting, plus whether or not I have a headache, how my mood is, and if I exercised. As I'm often saying, I believe our physical, mental, and emotional health is all connected, so I'm curious to see if I can notice any patters and correlations.
The really great thing about living in the U.S. now is that there are so many alternatives to the foods I am no longer eating. For example, my milk options in Japan were cow, goat (but it was hard to get) and soy. Now there are all those, plus almond, rice, cashew, coconut, and more. Don't even get me started on ice cream (Coconut Bliss!!!).
Also, coconut oil is cheap! Fruit, vegetables, and meat are cheap! The only thing that's more expensive is fish, but that's ok because it's not too bad at the Asian market I recently discovered.
This might just be a honeymoon phase, but right now I feel like the U.S. is food heaven. And food makes me HAPPY :D <---this links to an unrelated but very happy video I made recently

1 comment:

  1. That elimination diet is very difficult and a lot of people are miserable when they try it. It's so great that it makes you happy because you realize how wonderful it is to be able to do it!