How Do I Start?

Before you even start learning about foods on the diet, here are some suggestions and important points for you to consider.

 

Get yourself a notebook.
Don't start the diet at a bad time.
Are you pregnant?
You have a house full of bad foods.
Talk to everyone you live with.
Try to rule everything else out first.

 


Get Yourself a Notebook

If you are just starting the diet, it's a great idea to keep a journal that records how you felt upon waking, what you eat that day, how you prepared it, and how you felt after you ate it. This will help you identify foods that trigger symptoms, even two days after you eat them. It also helps you to rotate your food.

Another category you may want to add is a stress level category. Sometimes it isn't the food we eat that causes the reaction, but the state our body is in. Keep this in mind when you are trying to decide if a food is suspect. Some people even keep track of what the weather is like, since many are sensitive to allergies aggrevated by dampness, humidity or actual seasonal allergens like pollen and hayfever.

There are some ready-made journals on some websites, but they print out so small it made me crazy. I find keeping the journal is tedious enough without having to strain my eyes and try to cram info into tiny little spaces. Some websites sell journals, but we spend so much money already I think it's a waste.

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Don't Start the Diet at a Bad Time.

If you have a big holiday celebration coming up, or a very busy work schedule, put off the diet until you know you will have the time to prepare all the foods and rest (your energy level might very well plummet the first week). The diet can be very frustrating, especially at the start.

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Are You Pregnant?

Even if you know your body is being ravaged by yeast, it may not be healthy to cut out all the foods. Remember, the diet promotes the release of toxins. You also want to make sure you are getting every nutrient you (and the baby) need to be healthy. Talk to your doctor.

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You Have a House Full of Bad Foods

So you just dropped a big chunk of change buying a block of cheese, some chips, luncheon meats, seasoned pork chops and 3 loaves of fresh bread to add to your collection of processed foods already in the fridge and cupboards. You didn't learn about the diet until after you put all the groceries away.

Well, if you can afford it, give the food away. If you are like me, and money does not grow on the trees in your garden, you may want to wait until some of the food is gone. Just don't buy anything else that isn't on the "ok" list after that. Clear out your cupboards of anything that's bad or might tempt you.

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Talk to Everyone You Live With

Eveyone in your house is going to be affected by your diet. If you have a family, getting rid of the "bad food" is going to make it even harder.

You need to explain to them what the diet entails and why you can't eat the foods. If you can, get your partner to read information on it. I printed out a list of foods that are ok for me and have it available for my partner to see in case he wants to do the shopping or make food for me to eat.

The reality is, people in your household might not understand the diet or might think it's a crazy idea. You can't force them to follow the diet too (unless you do all the cooking and shopping). Be careful not to preach to them either. Nothing turns people off more than to be scolded for their choices, especially if they don't suffer any illness.

My partner and I have an agreement. If he wants to eat junk, that's fine. He just can't bring it into the house. We also talked about foods he likes that I can resist because I don't really like them (e.g. rye bread, old cheddar cheese, black liquorice). Hopefully with compromise you can come to some arrangement you can both deal with.

I've never understood why some partners aren't supportive. True, the diet can be an inconvenience, but they want their partner to be well, right? They want their partner to be in a good mood and have more energy, right? I'm sure they want a healthy sex-life with their partner as well. And let me tell you, being bloated, tired, sore, and foggy-headed just does not make me feel sexy. Constipation is also a mood-killer in my experience. And a yeast infection doesn't do much for my libido either.

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Try to Rule Everything Else Out First

Have you been to a doctor? Have you seen a specialist? Have you been tested for celiac, diabetes, vitamin deficiencies, or anything else that matches your symptoms?

I've found that it's not so much "A ha! That's what I have" as it is "Ok. I don't have that. That's another off the list. Let's see what's left."

The elimination diet will help you to identify foods that upset your system. It can also give you clues as to what other illness you may be suffering from. I talk about this diet in the next section.

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