Be proactive about your health
When it comes to health, I’m all about prevention. Why wait until we are sick before we start taking care of ourselves? You need to know that disease can take decades to fully develop. During the extended onset, we often learn to live with the niggling disharmonies that steal our energy and vibrancy.
By the time our bloodwork hits a certain number, and we receive a diagnosis from the doctor, our health may be in a state of emergency. A more intense effort to reach optimal health is needed. If our energy reserves significantly impact our ability to take steps towards improved vitality, we may never fully recover.
In this article my goal is to persuade you to understand the importance of staying on top of your health.
How to find out if you have a food sensitivity.
When I first started playing around with diet, I was amazed at how the disharmony in my body expressed itself.
One of the best ways to learn about what foods you are sensitive to, is to remove it from your diet for about 2 months and then carefully reintroduce it and pay attention to how your body responds.
I have a lot of personal experience with this, as well as witnessing it with the people I’ve been working with over the years.
Before I give you an example of my own experience, bear in mind that we are individuals, and generally speaking, what hurts my body may not hurt your body, or vice versa. Having said that there are three food groups that are believed to be problematic for everybody, on some level, and I will mention these later.
My Blue Cheese Experience
The personal example I want to share with you, is my blue cheese experience. A few summers ago I enjoyed a raw vegan diet, switching to a healthy version of my previous regime as fall approached. My body had now been cleaned of all dairy and although I was able to eat cheese, I noticed a mild tingling in my fingers when I ate blue cheese. Yet as time went on I could indulge in this cheese and I would no longer notice the tingling.
There’s a postlude to this story, but first I want to address something that you may be thinking: why would I be concerned about the tingling if it went away?
The reason the tingling went away, is because my body was very good at compensating for this reaction. It’s a bit like someone telling you to be careful when walking on the ice. They tell you every day, but you ignore them, you don’t take precautions and eventually they stop nagging at you.
It’s common to be able to continually consume something that is mildly toxic to us, because the body, can suppress the symptoms until they eventually become unnoticed. However, after months, years, or even decades of these toxic attacks, the body may no longer be able to hold up the fort. Like slipping on the ice because you were complacent, you wake up one day with the beginnings of a labelled disease. Typically we have no idea what caused the problem. We just know we are sick.
The tingling continues
Heading back over to my blue cheese story. About 18 months ago I noticed I was waking up every day with stiffness in all my fingers on the left hand. In particular, my middle finger was very stiff most mornings. I had no idea what was causing it, and believed my diet to be very healthy. I was gluten free and virtually sugar free. Some mornings were worse than others and sometimes I wouldn’t notice it for a few weeks. It finally went away and I forgot all about it until recently.
I’ve been vegan for the last year. Occasionally I’ve strayed – for example I ate two ice creams on an overnight bike ride last summer! Recently I ate in an Italian restaurant and decided to allow myself to stray from my vegan habit. The delicious dish I chose included a variety of cheeses as well as gluten. Within an hour of the pleasurable dining experience, I noticed a mild ache in my right knee – something I often experience after consuming too much gluten, or sugar. On waking the next morning my left middle finger was stiff and slightly swollen and my fingers had that familiar tingling sensation.
A lightbulb switched on as I realized that cheese was the common denominator. I hadn’t eaten it for so long, which must have been why the tingling went away.
Many of us are walking around with food sensitivities, and while our bodies are doing a wonderful job at keeping us comfortable, we are becoming more and more susceptible to disease. We have no idea when the migraines develop, or the arthritis, or the diabetes – or something even worse – that food choices could be causing this. After all we’ve had the same diet for years.
I cannot stress enough, the importance of paying attention to the signals our body is giving us. It’s so important to check in with ourselves from time to time and give the body a break.
The three most Destructive Food Categories
I promised I would tell you what the three big offenders are. They are three substances that are hugely abundant in our modern diet, and at least two of them have been staples for hundreds of years. Yet these foods are the most inflammatory things you are likely to put in your body on a regular basis. They are: Gluten, Dairy and Sugar.
I want this story to help you to understand why it is important to schedule time for removing certain known toxins from your diet. Removing sugar, gluten and / or dairy for at least 8 weeks provides an opportunity to learn how your body reacts to it.
Easy 5 Day Detox for Beginners
My 5 day detox for beginners will help you to discover new ways of eating, that are pleasurable and healthful. It introduces the possibility of exploring further change and the effects of certain foods on your body. Joining the detox program is a great way to start as you will have support from me in the dedicated Facebook group as well as a community of detoxers with whom to share your wins and challenges.
The detox kit includes suggested recipes, a handbook to help you get started and explain what to do to get the most out of your detox, and handouts that help you decide which, if any supplements to take and on how to deepen your detox.
You can sign up here, and it is available for free this one time only.