Does it Really Matter?
I’ve never been a person to diet. I’ve been fortunate enough not have to worry much about what I ate or how much I ate.
My mother was born in Italy and taught us how to cook. We learned a lot of secrets (not fully understanding why you do it that way; but you do).
For example soaking beans and lentils helps remove lectins (a known cause for inflammation if you have any gut health issues or autoimmune issues).
I am not sure if she knew that. But it really doesn’t matter. It’s the right way to prepare and cook beans. And so we grew up eating and cooking a Mediterranean Diet.
As I moved through my 40s I noticed I had a lot of aches, pains, brain fog, joint pain, fatigue, weight gain, migraines, and sleep issues. I really couldn’t figure out what was happening.
It’s easy to look and treat symptoms but that wasn’t what I needed. I needed to change something. So I changed my mostly Mediterranean diet to a being a Mediterranean gluten free diet. Which essentially looks a lot like a Paleo Diet.
A Paleo Diet is close to the Mediterranean diet with the exception of gluten and dairy with an emphasis on whole foods. So it was relatively easy to make some changes with the food we were eating in our home. I made sure to purchase grass fed, free range, organic, non-gmo, and non-hormone treated meats and vegetables. It’s true it can cost more; but I am not spending money or time at doctors, buying medications, or being ill. So in the end it’s all worth it.
As I paid more attention to how food was making feel (good or bad). I decided to eliminate some items from my diet and then reintroduce them. This is essentially an elimination diet. I didn’t follow it strictly but did attend to it enough to notice certain triggers. Basically, in an elimination diet you follow the Paleo and remove the known food triggers: soy, dairy, eggs, fish, shellfish, caffeine, gluten, and nuts. Then reintroduce them again for a short period (separately) to determine how your body responds to certain foods.
The Paleo is easier to follow than the AIP (anti-inflammatory protocol) because it simply allows for more options. Some food items can be eaten sparingly and that will prevent any symptoms or inflammation.
The reason you want to reduce the overall inflammation in the body is because it is the number one cause for chronic disease and autoimmune issues. By changing your diet you can change your life.