I love what I do, how I am able to help people learn to eat well so they can be well. I also work hard to take care of my own health through nutrition and other means. I feel like I am in good shape and know that I have come so very far since the health care crisis of 2003 that lead me to this career.
Part of my changes, way back when, was the adoption of a vegetarian diet. I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis after more than ten years of misdiagnosis as IBS. The Nutritionist suggested that I consider eating a vegetarian diet for three months to allow my gut to heal. I felt so good on the vegetarian diet that I didn't look back. I was able to eat a balanced diet and to learn how to stay healthy with this eating pattern. This is something that many many people do. According to a 2008 study by Vegetarian Times over 7 million Americans follow a vegetarian diet. More than half of them do so for health reasons.
I know that some people try vegetarian diets but ultimately wind up becoming carbotarians instead. Thinking that because they are not eating meat that means they should eat lots of pasta and other simple carbohydrates. Being a vegetarian isn't difficult but it does require thinking about your protein and fats and, oh yeah, you do need to eat vegetables. Many, if not most, carbotarians eventually wind up going back to eating meat because they get so sick by not supporting the needs of their body.
I'm confident in my knowledge as a Nutrition Educator, I've helped lots of people feel better with learning to eat the right way for their body. And no, that does not mean I make everyone become a vegetarian. We work together to help you find what works best for your bio-individual body and then we go from there to build a nutritional plan. I have always said that I was a vegetarian because it best met my body needs and my focus is to eat in harmony with my body. I've also been fond of pointing out that our dietary needs change throughout different cycles of our life, otherwise we would all still be drinking breast milk.
So imagine my shock when I received the results of a recent food sensitivity test (which I have never taken before) which indicated that I had some very serious food sensitivities going on. I feel good, I look fine, I struggle a bit time-to-time but I put that down to the UC which I manage without medication. The results of the test appear to indicate that I have a fair amount of inflammation going on in my gut and what I had been attributing to one thing was actually something quite different altogether. I now need to make some significant changes to my diet.
The bottom line is that I am highly sensitive to dairy products (cow and goat) and eggs. Darn. That's a significant source of protein for me. Considering my options I feel that it would be best for me to add lean meats back into my diet, a big change after all these years. I've also had to write a rotation diet for myself. I've created a number of them for clients but never imagined that I would wind up doing this for myself. I hadn't realized how comfortable I'd become with my vegetarian diet, my inclination when reaching for breakfast is eggs, my idea of a great snack is a yogurt parfait with fresh fruit. Because I am committed to my health and my body I know that for at least the next three to six months those are no longer part of my diet. I am hopeful that by avoiding them and doing an intestinal repair and recolonizing program I will be able to at least add them back in on a rotation basis when this is all done.
In the meantime I am reminded on so many different levels how the only thing that is constant is change.