Sunday, August 9, 2015

Saving Grace

As much as I live on a very restricted diet and often consider food my enemy, I've come to also realize it's my saving grace. Really, food is a double-edge sword that can make me sick and keep me well. Yes, really.

The trick is that after reading an article in the Sunday newspaper (read four of them, Washington Post on-line, and the New York Time, Seattle Times and Tacoma News Tribune in print because I like sitting down with big print newspapes) I realized an extreme food sensitivity has advantages.

The author was writing about the loss of real flavor in food with the food industry using some many tricks to make packaged food taste good but often not real. I realized I rarely eat a packaged food product anymore because I can't.

That's because almost every food in packaged food, and restaurant food for that matter where I rarely eat anymore (about once a year), have foods or ingredients which at best will leave me mildly sick overnight and at worst moderately to seriously sick for days.

My diet consists mostly organic or natural foods, including meats (ham and turkey), vegetables, fruits, etc. and the rest are organic or natural packaged foods with few ingredients, like mayonaise, peanut butter, preserves/jam, etc.

In short I don't eat the foods the majority of people eat. I have a simple diet which I stay with along with occasional "food experiments", which are foods not on the list to see if they're still off the list or they're on the three strikes they're out list.

When I get a bad reaction to any food, I don't eat it for awhile, then try it, and if it still makes me sick, I wait longer and try it again. If it makes me sick a third time, then it's, yeah, three strikes you're out (off the list indefinitely if not permanently).

But sometimes food experiments are foods, such as meat, fresh vegetables, fresh fruits, etc. which are on the off list (FODMAPS or other rules, eg. "Nothing green or leafy") which I know provoke a reaction, so it's more to reaffirm what I already know.

Anyway, the point of this is that while the list of foods I can eat can be written on a 4"x6" postit note and almost all other foods are my enemy, my diet is my saving grace protecting me from industrial packaged foods, fast foods (yes, those too), and 99% of snacks, candy bars, drinks etc.

My food sensitivities are what's keeping me alive but also saving me.

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