I have been floundering a bit recently with my nutritional approach. Now that many peripheral health issues have been resolved, I’m noticing a few things in my diet that are not working for me. One of the most obvious is the inclusion of grains. Brown rice hates me. Even gluten-free, Body Ecology Diet-approved grains like buckwheat, quinoa, and millet torment me. I’ve been soaking them BED/Nourishing Traditions style, but that hasn’t helped. I’ve properly combined them but, again, to no avail. Digestive enzymes? Ditto. Since the digestion problems persist, and I know that I’m candida-free, I’m avoiding my food allergens, I’m getting plenty of probiotics and enzymes from both food and supplements, and that my gut is in good shape, I think I am about ready to conclude that grains just aren’t for me.
This is very frustrating, to say the least. For one, grains are C.H.E.A.P., which is nothing to sneeze at with grocery prices soaring. Second, I, um, like grains. They’re yummy. Third, my husband needs them to keep his weight up (disgusting, isn’t it?), so I have to make them anyway. This is very hard for me. If it’s in the house, I’m probably going to eat it, even if I know it won’t make me feel good. Fourth, grains are politically correct, you know? People like it when you say, “Oh yes, I’m virtually vegetarian.” I do try to buy local, responsibly raised and produced animal products, but it’s still not exactly eco-chic. Fifth, while true food allergies are a good excuse for refusing bread, things start getting tricky when you say you don’t want rice because “you don’t digest it well.” Right. People think you’re making it up or are just overly demanding.
Despite these myriad objections, I am going to start experimenting again. Experimentation. That’s something I haven’t talked much about on this blog. In many ways, I feel that the last year-and-a-half of my life has been a giant series of experiments. I’ll try one thing for a while — whether it’s a particular way of eating (raw, vegan, Body Ecology, etc.), a new health practitioner, or a special kind of treatment — and pick up some useful habits and information, then I’ll transition to something else, hoping to make some more progress. I try to take with me the things that work for me and my body. Some phases have been more successful than others. I’ve made some blunders, spending too much money and time on certain approaches and practitioners, but I’ve also found some real gold-mines of health. If there’s one thing I feel convinced of by now, it’s that there is no perfect solution that fits everyone. I think that we all have to take things slowly, trying one approach after another, listening to our bodies at every step. There is no magic pill, no perfect nutritional formula, no genius doctor or naturopath or chiropractor that will suddenly transform us into radiant, healthy beings. I’m beginning to understand that a lot of patience and a lot of time are required in the pursuit of wellbeing.
I dislike this very much.
I feel impatient. I want to be perfectly well now. It’s easy for me to look at the problems I still have and feel like giving up. But if I take a moment and think about where I was a year ago, or even six months ago — heck, what about three months ago? — I realize that I have made tons of progress. I don’t have candida now, my seasonal allergies are minimal, my digestion is dramatically better, my absorption of nutrients is much-improved (as evidenced by my newly strong, long-growing nails!), my immune system is far stronger, I am feeling less hot all the time, I’m off of progesterone for the first time in six years and having better periods than ever (no PMS!), I get fewer headaches, I can think more clearly and remember things better, I have a lot more energy, I have been able to reduce my thyroid medication, and my sleep cycle is much improved, though I do run into occasional hiccups with it. There are a lot of other great strides forward, but I can’t think of them at the moment. Are things perfect? No way. But they’re better. So, so, so much better. It helps that I have a few people around me who remind me of how far I’ve come. (Thank you!)
Anyway, I’m here to say that I don’t have it all figured out. I’m on the brink of a new experiment with my diet, and I’m eager to see how goes. I feel a little apprehensive because, after all, even if my current diet isn’t perfect, there are no surprises with it. I know what to expect. Change is always a little scary and can often be draining. It requires lots of mental and emotional energy, and it’s important for me to remember that. I often forget that I need to give myself grace and time. Oh, that patience would become a habit a little faster!