Tag Archives: Gluten Free

Who’s Afraid of a Cheat Day? Me…

As I sit here writing this post, I’m pondering whether I should allow myself to have a cheat day once a month. First, a little background. If you’ve read my blog for a bit you already know this, but I’m going to recap anyway!

I have Idiopathic (meaning don’t know what caused it) Tracheal Stenosis (a narrowing of my airway). Over time, my throat closes up to the size of straw which makes working out, heck even just walking across the parking lot, quite a chore. Think of wearing a nose plug and only being able to breathe what air you can suck in through a drinking straw. Now, think of running or lifting weights while doing that. Yeah…not fun.

Since the doctors don’t know what’s causing it, I’ve been trying to do different things with my diet to see if I can make it better. I’ve been sugar free for 60 days and gluten/dairy free for 45. So far, I can’t really tell where it’s making a difference, except for helping me lose weight! That being said, I don’t want to go through the rest of my life never eating another piece of bread, cake, or Mexican food…mmmm….Mexican food.

With that in mind, I’ve told myself that I would allow 1 day a month where I don’t worry about what I eat. Obviously, I’m not going to binge but I’m also not going to worry about gluten/dairy/sugar. In my mind, once a month is not bad. If I allowed myself one day a week I would be in trouble though.

So, what’s the problem? I’m scared to death that if I break free from my diet for the day that I’ll have a hard time getting back in to the groove the next day which may lead to me eating badly again…then again…and you get the picture.  I’ve lost 50+ lbs and I don’t want to gain them back. 6 months ago I would have been “hell yeah!” about a cheat day and not thought twice about it but I would also have probably fallen back in to my cycle of gaining the weight back and having just that much further to go.

This outlook is definitely new for me. This fear…I don’t like it. I should have confidence in myself to make the right choices for me. I want to be one of those people who can enjoy a piece of cake at a party and be able to go back to being healthy. Normally, an all or nothing approach is best for me. Especially since I think I’m a sugar addict. But, it’s just not realistic to think I’m never going to eat it again!

How can I enjoy my “cheat” day and hop back in the saddle without feeling food guilt or fear that I’ll gain 50lbs in one day?

Supplements for Body and Spirit

Heidi Ho Good Neighbors!

This path month has seen a lot of changes for me, diet wise. First, I managed to kick the sugar habit (so far at least, 38 days and counting). This was one of the hardest things I’ve done since giving up cokes. I can honestly say I think I’m a sugar addict. With that realization, I’ve changed the “Well, I can one piece of candy” outlook to completely abstaining from the white powdery substance. As soon as it hits my blood stream my body screams for more more more.

Secondly, I called Nutritional Weight and Wellness and had a phone consultation with Darlene Kvist to try and get my nutrition in hand. I was hoping to be able to “cure” my tracheal stenosis, but my main concern is just getting healthy and staying healthy so I don’t have to rely on my husband to bathe and feed me when I’m older.  The consultation went about as I had expected. She asked a lot of questions and went over the paperwork I had filed with them. In the end, we decided to approach my diet as though I have an autoimmune disease and see if we can get the inflammation down. After All, if the inflammation is down then I should be able to breathe better right?

She recommended I get tested for Hashimoto’s, which thankfully came back negative! In fact, my thyroid levels were pretty good. T4 levels were 1.1 (normal range .8-1.8) and my TSH levels were 2.1 (normal range .4-4.5). What do all of those numbers mean? Basically, my thyroid is functioning at a normal level instead of being sluggish and my hormones are level.  

Some expected changes (if you’ve listened to their podcasts you know what’s coming too!) were the elimination of gluten and MSG from my diet. What I didn’t expect was having to get rid of diary. I can honestly say I miss my cheese too. Love me some cheese. I also had to start eating more. I KNOW….eat more?! Instead of just breakfast, lunch, and dinner, we should be eating breakfast, an AM snack, lunch, a PM snack, and dinner to keep our blood sugar levels balanced. Since I’m not hungry too often, this has been a little challenging. We’ll discuss the diet in detail in a later post as I’m already getting long winded here!

Last, she told me to start taking some supplements. This is just until we get my body back in shape, but it’s still a lot:

Yeah, I know…and that’s only for breakfast and lunch Monday through Friday. Doesn’t count dinner, bedtime, or the weekend allotment. I feel a bit like a druggy! However, I am going to give them a month and see if I have any noticeable changes. So, what exactly is in my bag of goodies and what do they do?

GLA – or Gamma-Linolenic Acid. This is an Omega 6 that’s supposed to help lower inflammation and help with autoimmune diseases. Supposedly, it may also help slow the growth of cancer cells, but more testing is needed.

Fish Oil – I do not like fish…period, so this is a no brainer for me. I take fish oils 3 times a day and don’t seem to have a problem with “fishy burps” like some people. A good grade fish oil will help prevent those. Fish oils help lessen inflammation in the system and acts as a natural blood thinner, so be sure to stop taking them before surgery or talk to your doctor if you have concerns or are on a blood thinner already.

Vitamin D – of course, we hear how difficult it is to get enough vitamin D. Interestingly, many people in my tracheal stenosis group have been very vitamin D deficient. I’m not sure if there’s a correlation there or not. Plus, vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium and lessens inflammation.

Glutamine – if you have GI issues (IBS) or have intense workouts Glutamine helps your body rebuild itself. This is found naturally occurring in beef, chicken, fish, eggs, milk, and dairy products so it’s believed most people get enough throughout the day but for those people who have taxed their system for a while (does being 100lbs overweight for years count?) it would be beneficial to supplement for a bit to build it back up.

Probiotics (especially, bifidobacteria) – I just started taking these this past weekend, so I don’t have much to offer here other than they have a somewhat nasty taste if you leave it on your tongue for too long. It’s supposed to help with GI issues (again, IBS) and get your gut back to a healthy natural state.

It all sounds so glamorous, doesn’t it?! Did I mention I hate taking pills? Well, I’m almost 30 days in to taking all of these and I honestly can’t say whether they’re helping me feel better or not. I’m definitely dropping weight and that in itself will make a person feel better.

Previously, I also mentioned working on other slices of my wheel of life as well. While I am concentrating on my Physical slice, I’m also starting to work on my Spiritual slice. I lost two Uncles within a week of each other, and if that doesn’t make you start thinking (especially when the last time you saw one of them was sitting next to him at the previous Uncle’s funeral service) then maybe you need to stop and take a look around. Not everyone believes what I do, and that’s ok. Everyone is entitled to their own beliefs and need to come to their own conclusions.

I went to Lifeway Christian Store on Saturday to look around. It’s one of my favorite places to just go and mill around. You never know what you might find there! I came across a book by Holley Gerth, You’re Already Amazing: Embracing Who You Are, Becoming All God Created You to Be.

I’m only a couple of chapters in, but I have to say this book is great. It’s well written and hits home. This book will be one of those that change my perspective on life. When I’m done, I will pass it along to an important woman in my life (Mom, Aunts, Cousins, Friends…not sure who just yet) and hope that it touches her as well. Sorry guys, but this book is written toward women. You’re welcome to read it and will probably gain a lot of insight, but don’t be offended if you see “sister”, “woman”, “she” throughout!

What are some changes you’ve made in your diet/life that have had positive outcomes so far?