Before the Elimination Diet

As I’ve written about, I am about to start a Total Elimination Diet (TED). This is to combat a multitude of health issues I have been having to hopefully identify if there are any food intolerances at play.

As a way to keep a record for myself, I wanted to record any symptoms and issues I am having at my baseline so that I can notice how they evolve and change over time. It will also help me as I start to reintroduce foods to my body later in the process.

My current symptoms:

  • Migraines (2x a month)
  • Digestive Issues
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Acne
  • Itchy Skin/Rashes
  • Runny/Stuffy nose
  • Dark Circles under eyes
  • Frequent muscle aches
  • Anxiety

Evaluation of Current Eating Plan-

For the past month, I have tracked all of the foods I have been eating. I was really hoping to notice a trend in my symptoms and be able to correlate them with what I had consumed so I could avoid an Elimination Diet. Clearly, I was unsuccessful. Using online trackers, I generally keep within 1500-1800 calories a day. Some of my favorite foods are peanut butter, homemade bread, tomatoes and sugary things- all of which will not be allowed on my new plan. I drink coffee daily, and have started to taper that off so that I do not throw myself into a withdrawal-induced migraine once I officially drop that habit. I have to admit I am nervous.

I am taking on this challenge under medical guidance because I want to make sure that I am eating enough. It could be really easy to drop weight if I just limited myself to salad and chicken breast! While that certainly will be a meal option here and there, I want to make sure that I am including everything I need for a well-rounded diet. As I am still nursing Cupcake, I will continue taking my prenatal vitamins to make sure that any temporary nutritional holes in my diet are filled.

I think a lot of this eating plan will be emotional. I have found that over the past few days, I have been craving all of the foods I know I will not be able to have as I get started. It hasn’t been too much of a problem (as I slowly remove my spoon from the peanut butter jar), but I will definitely be sure to include the not so cheery parts of this plan, as well.

I have been told that the first few days are not fun. Oftentimes the body goes through a withdrawal period where symptoms seem to get worse before they get better. When I heard that, I all about jumped ship. Why would I want to do this to myself? I was reminded that although it will be difficult to start, I will feel so much better afterward. The next few weeks will be trying, but as I start to add foods back to my diet, it will just get better and better.

Selfishly, I am glad we are doing this now. There are no major holidays for a little while to tempt me. By the time Thanksgiving and Christmas roll around, we will be through the strictest parts and will have many more options to choose from, knowing that they are safe for our bodies. We also would love to expand our family at some point, so I want to do this before that happens. Obviously if I were to fall pregnant, that would be part of the considerations in how to proceed on this plan.

All in all, I am more excited than nervous. I am ready to feel good again! Wish me luck!

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