One year has passed since I have drastically changed my diet. The results? My hay fever is gone after 16 years!! My skin looks more healthy and so am I. I have lost some weight and so did my husband! Our life has changed, not just our eating habits but a lot more! How and why? Here is my story:
Clean eating and following a plant based diet
In last October after a sudden decision I have stopped eating bread (flour), cheese, and overall dairy. At first I’ve followed a Paleo diet (that is what I knew about at that time) for 3 weeks then my findings led me to plant based diets. How happy I am about this finding!
This is what I have started to adapt in my life. Throughout last winter I mostly ate raw: lots of fruits all the time, salads or steamed veggies in the evening. It was delicious but I was hungry more of the time because I didn’t met my necessary daily calorie intake. I got quite thin too and this was a big challenge I’ve faced at that time. Lesson learned! Eat enough calories! Eat more starches.
My family members were worried: are you eating enough? You have a yellow color, you eat too much carrots (what?? really? – actually no, my mom was just overworrying things). I remember at that time my family members shared FB posts about healthy eating like “this will happen with you if you eat too much cauliflower” and other not so helpful articles. No worries, I continued eating the way I wanted.
At that time I still ate meat (poultry and fish), eggs and very rarely bread, especially when we visited our families.
After half a year I started to reduce my meat intake, stopped eating egg completely and added more starches to my diet: rice, bulgur and potatoes. Not too much just to gain some weight. This was around May-June in 2015. Nowdays I eat less salad and more starches. I usually eat smaller salads as side dish to starches. (A good read about starches and a plant based diet is the Starch Solution by Dr. McDougall.) Starches are good to eat more calories, to get all the essential amino acids, proteins, minerals your body needs at a better price. (Fruits are quite expensive and more difficult to get enough calories just by eating those – at least for me.)
I must highlight that I have stopped eating junk food right from the start. There were a few times when I have slipped and still ate some chocolate and ice cream in the summer, but I was able to say no many times and ate far less than before. I have completely removed canned foods (with fake meat inside), bad quality processed foods (the cheapest toast breads – this is what I ate for many years for breakfast and lunch at school -, the cheapest asian instant noodles – this was a big chalenge because I love them) and chips from my life.
I also don’t use any fat or oil when I cook (I do this since July 2015). I cook simple, easy to make foods – usually soups and stews and steamed veggies – switching the ingredients each time. Easy and you can cook for a few days ahead. Exploring the available starches is my new hobby! :D I have started with basic ones (rice, potatoe) then added bulgur. Now I have millet, hulled barley and buckwheat at home too.
Results of my diet after a year
My hay fever is gone
In the past 16 years I had hay fever every year from mid August until the beginning of October. Usually my eyes were itching and they were watery. Sometimes too watery. I have been sneezing a lot in sequences. Usually there was a tingling feeling in my nose that made me sneeze. And the worst part: my nose was running all the time. My nose area got so irritated, that it turned to red, it dried out and it hurt.
This year I had none of these symtomps. None. Not even once. My head was clear all the time, no sneezing, no running nose.
How did this happen? I have not been at the doctor so what I share with you here is my own assumption, although it is a strong one. There was one big thing I have changed in my life since last year: my diet. I am sure that my body got rid of many toxic and poison since I started eating more healthy and that is why the hay fever is gone. I am very happy about this!
My skin is not so oily anymore
The texture of my skin has changed. First of all it is less oily. I can say it is more normal than oily. It has a healthier glow than before, it is not so red either which is great. I think my pores got a bit smaller too, but I really hope that this will still get better.
I have lost some weight
This happened in the first half year of my diet change mostlye bacause of eating raw. I lost 10 kilos which is actually a lot because I am small and I had a normal weight. I got a bit too thin, that is when I have started to eat starches again to gain back more weight. Now I have gained 3 kilos – this was neeed! – and I am holding my weight since then.
My husband lost lots of weight
First of all he started to eat like me after he saw the changes on me and after the doctor told him he should loose weight. I think this was in February 2015. He was very overweight. In six months he lost 20 kilos and he is holding his weight since then. This is a big result! When he tried to get off some weight before he usually gained all back within a short amount of time. Now he doesn’t. Well, this is not surprising. To hold a healthy weight you need to hold a healthy diet. Also it is not enough to change your diet, you should know why you were overweight and work on yourself there!
I was sick less often and for shorter time.
I was pretty good whole year. As far as I remember I took no medicine in pillform this year. I only drank two hot drinks for cold. Before changing my diet I had been sick usually in the winter time and in March. Almost every year around March my throat hurt, sometimes it was pretty bad. This year it was all right. And not just in March but in the whole year too. My throat was always a sensitive area for me. (You know: all the things you don’t say out loud altough you want, will affect your throut area. If you are angry about something, it is better to say it out loud. Do it for yourself!)
My nails are stronger
My nails are stronger, they don’t break even when they are longer – and they are long! Also the nail on my right ring finger got stronger too. I know this because the right part of that nail was visibly thinner then its other half for years. Now it has the same normal thickness everywhere. There was also a red patch close to the base of my nail on that finger. Now that is gone too. Hurray!
Aiming to eat 100% plant based
These are the changes I have witnessed along the year since I have changed to a more healthy, more plant based diet. This month I went even further and didn’t eat meat! (Yes, I even said no to meat when we visited my family.) Why? There are many reasons, I might write about this in an other post (let me know if you are interested!). It is not just about the animals, there are more to think about!
I will keep eating this way, following the starch based diet: adjusting it and adding my own rules to it while aiming to avoid meat fully.
I hope you found my experiences with the diet change interesting. If you are interested in hearing more about healthy eating let me know and I can go a bit more in detail about the how and what. I have learned a lot this year, I’ve run into some traps and found solutions to them too.
I am grateful that I have started my journey with healthy eating. This had led me to meet new people, to learn a lot about our life, our world. The journey continues.