So, here we are on Day 31. I finished the Whole30, so what now?
Well, here’s the next step – I’ll be following a paleo eating plan now, but first … or rather at the same time … I’ll be eliminating some of the foods on the list of things to avoid if you have autoimmune issues, just to see what I’m sensitive to. This includes eggs, nuts and seeds (goodbye sunflower seeds), and nightshades and spices that fall under that category (it was nice getting to know you, cayenne pepper).
And just to clear up a statement someone made, I am not jumping from one diet to another in some desperate crunchy attempt to be a health nut. I’m working within one whole healthier way of living. I started off with a reboot of juicing (I made it two days), then stepped into Whole30 for a greater detox, and now I’m moving into eliminating foods that are possibly still causing me harm due to the issues I’ve been dealing with, primarily neurological health concerns that are likely autoimmune disorder/disease-related. Further, my goal is healthy living and a fantastic quality of life (I’m not interested in a merely good enough quality of life when I know there is more to be had).
THAT is what I’m doing. Taking steps, not jumping from one fad idea to another. And as of today, I’m 31 days free of sugar, grains, and dairy.
So, the next step is continuing this healthy way of eating while continuing to remove items that could be still bad for me. They might not be an issue in the end, but I’m willing to try. I’m this far in, why not keep going?
A paleo way of eating is simply more along the lines of what I’ve already been doing, only with more allowances. While the Whole30 gave my body a chance to detox from all that I’ve put into it for 38+ years, the next step will be a way of life, in making and eating healthy foods from here on out.
Note: This doesn’t mean I won’t ever allow myself treats. I will. But I’ll be more conscious of these decisions versus grabbing and grazing at home, work, or social events. Fruit versus candy and cake. Veggies versus chips. My old normal had me eating all day long, constantly grabbing small meals made up of toast, sandwiches, snack bars, leftovers, whatever. I don’t eat that way anymore. Oh sure, I have those STARVING days where I want to eat constantly, but in those situations, I either give in to something good, or I redirect my thinking.
I’m also going to attempt to find a yoga class to fit into my schedule and budget. I think this would be beneficial as a whole – good for my body, good for my mind.
I think when it comes down to the nitty-gritty of it all, the biggest reason I started this journey was not because I had low energy or pain in my arm, or the neurological issues, even. The biggest reason is I could feel my brain failing. That is, all the fog, all the confusion, all the inability to truly focus, to make solid decisions based on thought, not feeling. I failed an English class, for heaven’s sake! If I said math, we’d all nod and understand, but English? I don’t DO that!
So, I wanted my brain back. MY brain, MY thoughts, MY focus, and MY intelligence. I am made up of big ideas and the never-ending seeking of learning more. To have that taken from me was the last straw, period. The rest of the changes are just bonuses.
Oh, and one last point: Did I lose weight?
Let me say this first — it was never about losing weight. The fact that I have to keep answering that question says a lot about how focused we are on physicality and numbers.
So, did I? Yes and no. I lost unhealthy fat. It became obvious to me that my weight was shifting about halfway through when my pants fit a little differently (slightly less tight in the waist). But I ate plenty of food – all healthy – so I didn’t LOSE weight, just shifted out the bad fat for healthier weight.
I’m not going to give any numbers because I get enough flack from people, so I’m not interested in feeding the flames, but I will say this: I’m a small girl, and that’s just who I am. Let’s leave it alone.
What is most important here is that I feel better. MUCH MUCH MUCH better.