When I First Started The Diet

Submitted by Miss Danielle on Thu, 04/21/2005 - 3:01pm.

I was 25 when I first started the diet. I had just learned how to cook, but everything I learned to use in my dishes (flour, butter, cheese, pre-made broths / canned soup, bread/bread crumbs and crackers for toppings, milk, sugar) was not allowed. I didn't know how to cook anything that was ok for me.

There was no such thing as a health food store where I lived. And at this point, it was REALLY rare for anyone to have an Internet connection in their home.

I was a vegetarian at the time, so no meat. That left me with grains and veggies.

I remember trying to make the "diet friendly" flat breads, tortilla and pancake recipes (that, by the way, were pretty much all the same recipe). And I HATED it. Gross. What a waste of time and money to bake something that ended up tasting like chalk to me; that fell apart when I tried to make a tasteless sandwich (my favourite type of food to eat at the time I got really ill). It was like adding insult to injury.

I hated rice. And rice without butter? BLECH. Besides, rice gave me a stomach ache.

And they said not to fry things. Ok. So all I was left with was steaming veggies. Whoop-dee-doo. I figured out how to make soup. Well, "clear broth" is a more suitable definition. And I knew nothing about fresh herbs, so my soups tasted like watered-down vegetables.

I ended up doing more of a watery-soup fast than a diet for the first 2 weeks. I was tired, hungry, and pissed off most of the time.

I remember one night, maybe 8 days in. I was going crazy and decided "Screw it! I am going to eat a fudgesicle. I'll choose sugar as my cheat. Just one bad ingredient. I've been so good. One bad ingredient can be justified". I went to the freezer, pulled out the box and hesitated. I decided to look at the ingredients on the side. My eyes went wide. I snarled.

"WHEAT??? WHO PUTS WHEAT IN A FUDGESICLE???" I stood at that open freezer, swearing and yelling, shaking my fist along with the evil wheat-and-sugar-filled treat in the air. I cursed everybody and everything.

I didn't eat it.

Wheat. What the heck? It really showed me that we don't realize what we're eating. That we have no idea what goes into our foods (by the way, wheat is used for texture and as a binding agent in some frozen treats).

Back to stupid steamed veggies and broth.

But I'll tell you something: I think the fact that I was forced to consume a healthy broth as my main food source contributed to how quickly I started to recover. At the third week, I was astonished by how great I felt. The "stupid-head" as I call it was gone. I had serious amounts of energy compared to before. My body was sharp and quick to tell me what foods it did not like.

I'd dropped some of the weight I had put on getting sick (as you can imagine with such a diet). I was sold on the diet approach and OH so happy I could finally incorporate more foods. I had taken food for granted, even though I loved it. We forget the small privileges we have when we are well. I knew to appreciate my sight, sense of hearing, and ability to walk, but not once had I been thankful for the simple ability to eat.

Years later, as I re-start my diet, I almost wish I didn't know as much as I do about foods that I am ok with. I wish I was more afraid of foods that give me slight symptoms. I know this would put me back on that crazy steamed veggies/soup fast, and would jump-start my journey back to health. But I just don't have the discipline this time around. I can do it for 2 days, then I reach for other foods that are still ok on the diet, but that I know aren't 100% good for me during the initial stages of cleansing the system.

I just wanted to share this story for anyone going through it for the first time. To let them know that others find the process just as hard, demanding and frustrating. I also wanted them to know that it works. That it's worth it. And the harder you stick to "yes" foods in the start, the faster you will heal.


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