Wednesday, July 2, 2014

immuno calm/LEAP diet: week one

i can't believe it has been a full week since i started the immuno calm/LEAP diet. in some ways, it feels like i've been eating this way forever. my diet has been so, so, so boring. i think the boredom of the diet has been more difficult than actually sticking to it, if that makes any sense. i'm also struggling with the boredom of drinking just water. what i wouldn't do for a glass of gatorade! i'm so desperate for something other than water, i'd be willing to forego caffeine for a longer period of time if i could just have some gatorade. desperate much?

i've been trying to figure out creative ways to satisfy my cravings. i managed to create a "lemonade" with just lemon juice, water, honey and strawberries. it's a little on the sour side, but it is a welcome treat when i'm sick of water. desserts have been tough, because all i really want to do is stick my face in a cake and eat it all. i can't have chocolate, so that makes desserts harder to satisfy as well. i ended up making a watermelon "sorbet" by putting watermelon, honey and a little lemon juice into a food processor and then freezing it. surprisingly, it is absolutely delicious. but does it taste as amazing as a vanilla cupcake would right now? probably not. 

another thing that has been frustrating is the amount of dishes we have to do now. i am cooking every night at least, prepping meals for that evening and the next day. we have a small kitchen, so dishes stack up very fast. i never thought i'd run out of tupperware, but i am. it's a situation i underestimated and didn't consider much when thinking about how much food preparation i would have to do. 

but maybe the most important thing to share is how i feel on this new diet. i'm only a week in and i guess there are a few general statements i can make when assessing how i'm feeling:

1) i've lost 3 pounds. it's probably all waste/water/toxin weight, but hey, it's something to take note of. i am eating less on this diet, and it's pretty much all fruits, veggies and whole proteins, so not a lot of processed stuff, which tended to make up the bulk of my caloric intake. 

2) i'm not bouncing around with energy yet. i was hoping, by now, my lack of caffeine lethargy would be replaced with a ton of energy, but i'm not there. i still feel tired on a daily basis, and although i'm not as tired as i was during the caffeine withdrawal, i still don't think i'm anywhere close to feeling the type of energy the diet claims you may regain.

3) i have a hard time gauging changes in my GI symptoms. on one end, i think the frequency of bloating i used to have has been significantly reduced. at the same time, i am using so much salt to flavor my food now (it's really the only spice i have to work with), that i still feel a level of bloat daily and especially towards the end of the day. the major ibs symptoms i had do seem to be relieved a bit and not as severe, so that is an encouraging sign. i wouldn't say i'm 100 better in this category, but i do think it's improving.

4) i have had only one major headache in the past week, which is great! i think it was a result of running a 5k in extreme heat, which my body wasn't prepared for. if only i could have gatorade, this might have been avoided. who knows. either way, i'm happy that i've only had one headache incident, even if the dang thing did last all day... 

i've been taking note of all my symptoms and when they occur each day, so i'm hoping it might reveal something insightful when my nutritionist takes a look at my food log next week for our first formal check in. i don't see any patterns, but what do i know?

i will end this on three things, as i've already written a lot:

1) i miss going out to eat. desperately. i miss the fun of eating at a restaurant, trying fun foods and the comfort of old favorites. i miss the spontaneity of it too. everything i eat now is so planned out, i am micro managing myself and i hate it!

2) i am very, very aware, more so than ever, of the things that go into our food. i think being aware is helpful, but being hyper aware? i'm not sure yet. we'll see how this goes as i can introduce more foods into my diet. 

3) trader joe's has been clutch in finding turkey meat, tuna and pasta that satisfy the simplicity of my diet. and trader joe's is awesomely cheap! thank goodness for tj's (no i was not asked to plug them in any way).  

so week one is done! i've survived and now i'm hoping to see better "results" in the next week, as i believe most inflammatory agents should be out of my system by then. stay tuned!




8 comments:

  1. Awesome Alicia! When you posted beginning in the week about starting your immune calm/LEAP diet, I realized I could probably NEVER do it! Congratulations for surviving this week and noting even the smallest positive changes. I can totally relate to the points you mentioned that make this diet a struggle; daily preparations are always my downfall. You've reminded me and inspired me, though, that it CAN be done! "They" say it takes 21 days to create a habit. Keep at it, girl. 14 more days and this will seem like old hat. :)

    p.s. Hope you start seeing the physical relief you were looking for this week! I'm sure that'll help keep you going when spontaneity tries to rear its temping head!

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    1. Thank you! This has totally been an "eyes on the prize" exercise for me. The past few days have been really tough; not sure if it is the holiday, or having more free time, but I have wanted to throw the towel in multiple times. It has taken a ton of will power to remind myself of the end goal and the type of set back I could create by going off plan. It's mentally exhausting, but I sure hope it pays off!

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  2. Its great that you're sticking with it and not cheating etc. I know its got to be hard when you have to do so much more work to prepare a boring meal.

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    1. No cheating! Although there were several times in the past few days when I wanted to throw in the towel. What I'm finding is hard is not being able to enjoy some of the food summer brings - feels a little bit like I can't enjoy everything summer has to offer!

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  3. I hope this works for you. I worry that you might not be getting enough nutrients and that is why you feel lethargic? I was hoping you would share some more of the meals you've made. When you listed the foods you could eat it reminded me of that TV show "Chopped" where the people had to make meals using specific ingredients. I can imagine it's not so fun in real life though. Hang in there! -M

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    1. I'm coming close on two weeks now and am feeling skeptical... still very tired and not sure the benefits outweigh the frustrations of being very limited in what I can eat. I wonder about the nutrients too - had to stop taking ALL multi-vitamins... I will absolutely share more of the meals! They're so basic and simple, could easily swap out other proteins, spices, etc.

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  4. Way to go, girl! Congrats on sticking with it. I love how you are making substitutions for desserts - that watermelon sorbet sounds delicious!

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    1. Thanks, Karen! The watermelon sorbet is awesome, but it's a bit of a sticky mess! It's probably just the containers I used, but man, I've been cleaning up my freezer and fridge on the daily!

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Getting comments feels as good as a freezing cold glass of Gatorade on a hot summer day. So don't be shy - share your thoughts & opinions! - Alicia