For those who eat right

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by FMsolider, Feb 9, 2007.

  1. FMsolider

    FMsolider New Member

    Ok, I know I have said it before but, this time I WANT to mean it. I would really like to make the commiment to eat a proper diet. I am also trying to quit smoking...mostly because I can not afford them anymore! My eating habits are so poor it is a surprise that I am not overweight. ( Not more than 10 lbs. or so) So, I was wondering for those who have met this chanlenge if they have any advice for me. And has anyone noticed that they feel better since eating a more balanced diet? For anyone who wants to join me on this quest I suggest checking out the LIME tv website for some great ideas.
  2. Catseye

    Catseye Member

    I had no improvement whatsoever until I gave up wheat and dairy. I though I was eating okay, but the dairy and the gluten were really ruining me. A chiropractor was the first to suggest it. I got no suggestions about food from my digestive disease specialist other than "plenty of whole grains". He sounded just like a breakfast cereal commercial. Ironically, that's what was making me feel like I was dying, wheat and dairy.

    Look at xchocoholic's post in the chit chat board called "eating healthy recipes or tips". There's a ton of recipes. Most important, eat tons of veggies. I know, I can hear you groaning. I promise after a couple of weeks, your body will realize they are helping and it will make them taste less revolting. You have to get accustomed to healthy food and it takes awhile. It took a long time for you to get accustomed to the SAD (standard American diet) and it will take time to adjust to healthy eating.

    To make veggies more bearable, here are some tips:

    The more variety you have together, the better the taste. Not many people like the taste of broccoli by itself. Get a bunch and cut them up small and boil them in chicken broth, without msg. I do broccoli, cauliflower, onions, garlic, peppers (all colors), potatoes, carrots and zucchini. The most important for flavor is lots of onion, garlic and the peppers, especially the green, yellow and orange ones. These will make it taste pretty good. Make a huge pot of them and eat them several times a day.

    You will have to resign yourself to no longer having food as a luxury. Instead of "what yummy thing do I feel like eating", which we have all done and is why we're all sick, now it's "what does my body need right now". There's no way around this. You have to start eating for your body and not merely satisfying your mouth and tummy. You probably have food cravings, which is really your body's only way of telling you it needs nutrients. It tells you to eat, but you probably have been automatically reaching for the wrong things and it never gets satisfied.

    I lost my food cravings after several months of eating mostly veggies, brown rice and beans. That's not all I eat right now, but for awhile it was. I was in really bad shape, though. I was completely bedridden and couldn't do anything. I eat veggies for breakfast and since I eat every 2-3 hours, I eat them throughout the day. They don't bother me now but when I first started eating veggies, I was making faces and it was hard to get them down. That's the price we're paying for a free economy where junk food can even be labeled as healthy. All they have to do is "fortify" it with a few nutrients. Makes you wonder why they don't put a whole bunch of nutrients in food, just a handful. Actually, I think I know why but that's for another post.

    If you find you have cravings for sweet things, you should obviously try to give up eating a bunch of sugar, but you can get tasty, healthy treats at the health food store. Stuff like dates and nuts are very satisfying, and protein bars. But try for dairy, gluten and soy free. There are also protein shakes and nut milks you can get.

    Well, that's enough from me. Alot of people here are very knowledgeable about food and I'm sure you'll get lots of good responses.

    Giving up wheat, dairy and soy will eliminate most junk food automatically, that's why it's such a good rule. And remember, eat lots and lots of veggies.
    And no diet stuff like diet coke; nutrasweet is not acceptable, either.

    best wishes,

    karen

    oh, just avoid wheat (pasta, cookies, crackers, pizza, etc) doesn't mean to go overboard getting gluten free versions of all these foods. You want stuff right out of the ground as much as possible: veggies, fruits, nuts, brown rice, beans, etc.

    [This Message was Edited on 02/10/2007]
  3. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic New Member

    I started slowly by adding healthy foods to my diet.

    It's much less overwhelming and you don't feel like you are depriving yourself.

    Buy whatever your favorite fruits and veggies are at first. Then, start addding in some you have never tried.

    In time your taste buds will change and you will not crave junk food anymore.

    It's a lifestyle change, so take your time. And give yourself permission to mess up from time to time. Just don't over indulge and set yourself back...

    xchoc

    BTW - you have to get any foods you are sensitive to out of your diet in order to feel better ... wheat, soy, dairy, eggs, corn are the most common, but there are others like nuts and seafood .. Look into gluten sensitivity too ... [This Message was Edited on 02/10/2007]
  4. sascha

    sascha Member

    i have tried many different plans and approaches over the years. i had such a poor year last year that i have committed again and plan to keep it going.
    i do find that eating really clean and giving up 'junk' does raise my functioning levels- i have more energy, mental clarity, and a better sense of well-being for much more of the time. i don't have that 'push and crash' thing going on so much. i just feel better.
    i guess you have to very carefully try things out for yourself and notice how you feel. wheat and dairy are often bad for us ill people. also processed 'empty calorie' foods. eat only what will contribute to your health- organic produce, good quality meats, good fats (for me it's coconut and olive oil), raw nuts, seeds.. i do have feta and some parmesan cheese.
    no ice cream, sugar, processed foods (rule of thumb is to shop the perimeter of the grocery stores- avoid shelved products in the middle- no caffeine, alcohol, breads (although you can find gluten-free products).
    there ARE lots of substitutes for things i give up- like one delicious thing to eat is a wedge of cantaloupe with lots of berries on top (blackberries, raspberries, blueberries) and chopped walnuts on top of that. if you want it sweetened, sprinkle stevia on top (can get this at health food stores.
    once you start down this path it becomes very interesting. i keep making great discoveries (like kefir i use in blender drinks with fruit and acai (from healthfood stores in freezer) and stevia. sometimes some carob to make it chocolate-y.
    anyway- there's lots of stuff out there to find, try, incorporate as you gradually move away from things that aren't helping your health. it feels pretty good to commit to healthy foods- may take a while- and i have definitely found that it helps how i feel. best of luck- check back in- Sascha
  5. pearls

    pearls New Member

    One of the best things I've done is to cook oatmeal for breakfast every single day. This is not the instant kind. It is the kind you cook. What oatmeal does is take the edge off your appetite (even if you're thin, you don't want to be eating junk food) from early morning into the late afternoon. You still eat lunch, but the effect is still there in the afternoon. I always hated oatmeal so I have learned to cook mine with stevia for sweetening (no calories and safe), cinnamon, a little salt, vanilla, raisins and sunflower seeds. I crush toasted walnuts over the top and serve with non-fat milk. Now I love my oatmeal.

    I also eat a lot of fruit, and have increased my intake of fresh vegetables. I could write a book, but other than cutting out junk food, this is the most important advice I can give in a nutshell.
    [This Message was Edited on 02/10/2007]
  6. forfink

    forfink New Member

    Ok, I see some have given up wheat and dairy.
    But if your body doesn't seem to object to these foods in any way. No IBS or specific allergies. Why give these foods up for fibromyalgia? Just wondering..........
  7. Catseye

    Catseye Member

    You may have to give them up for several weeks to notice a difference. I don't have an allergy to wheat or dairy, exactly, and I don't experience any digestion problems that are obvious from them. But if I consume them, I feel very bad.

    I haven't eaten them for a long time but if I ate them today, I would start to feel weak and irritable, just a little, tomorrow and after that progressively worse until I feel like I'm dying. Regular milk makes my hypersensitive to other allergens and I get hay fever and have a strong cat allergy. But off milk, I have neither of those. I tried raw milk for awhile, which didn't give me the allergies, but I still felt like I was dying after awhile.

    I suspect is has something to do with my body just being intolerant of the casein milk protein, but I'm not sure. The thing was, I couldn't get tested for this, it's something you just have to give up and see. Then you can always add it back later once you're sure. I experienced the beginnings of recovery only when I gave up wheat and dairy. I was so bad off, I was desperate enough to try anything. I thought it was ridiculous until my symptoms started to alleviate.

    The gluten is just as bad, if not worse; it can interfere with your body's ability to absorb nutrients. It's also much harder to avoid; you really have to restrict yourself.

    And I only developed this severe intolerance after I became ill with cfs. I imagine these are foods I should never have been eating to stay perfectly healthy, but I didn't know. I also can't tolerate citrus fruits, more than a small amount of sugar, red meat, alcohol, fatty foods or pork, to name a few.

    It just may be one of the things holding you back and the only way to know for sure is to do without for awhile.

    bon appetite!

    karen
  8. forfink

    forfink New Member

    I will give all these tips some consideration. I was tested for food allergies and did a very restrictive diet for months, but to no avail. Yet, I still find the experiences all of you have gone through excellent resources to really think about! Thanks
  9. Suzan

    Suzan New Member

    You will be most successful if you don't try to revamp your whole diet at once.
    What I have done is to start with the the really bad things ( this was about 10 years ago) Things like doritos...I knew they had to go, well, the first step was eating baked chips..then I would bake pita bread in the oven..and dip it in humuus. Then most days that has now even been replaced by veggie sticks or fruit.
    I no longer eat things that aren't healthy for me. ( the exception being the rare occasion when I am out an unable to control my food) I eat whole grains...mostly fish, chicken and beans..and some red meat..but not too often, I have learned that there are some things in red meat that are tough to duplicate so the easiest way to get them..is to eat the meat. But always the leanest healthiest cuts. LOTS of veggies and fruits..in a variety of ways...from raw to built into some great ethnic dishes...
    The fibro is still with me..but I know I am doing the right thing for my body...so eating well is just logical !

  10. JaneSmith

    JaneSmith New Member

    I went to eating junk to eating healthy including organic. What a difference! I feel much much better.
  11. JaneSmith

    JaneSmith New Member

    I went to eating junk to eating healthy including organic. What a difference! I feel much much better.
  12. Michelle_NZ

    Michelle_NZ New Member

    I think stopping smoking is one of the best things you can do for yourself.

    I recommend reading the book "The Easy Way to give up smoking" by Alan Carr

    I used to smoke 10 packs a week and quit the day I finished th book - 5 years ago. This was before I got CFS.

    I gave the book to 2 friends who also quit, and still are non smokers.

    Take care
    Michelle
  13. bunnyfluff

    bunnyfluff Member

    I did years ago with the patch. It was the best thing I ever did. I smoked a pack and a half a day for 15 years, so if I can do it, anyone can.

    I am gluten free, and that is great, too. I am Celiac, if you read my profile, it almost killed me, and it brought me to this place. A subsequent blood transfusion gave me CFS. But I eat very healthy foods, and I would never change that. The small of fast food even makes me sick.
  14. FMsolider

    FMsolider New Member

    Well guys, I was doing ok there for a second but, then I fell back into my old ways...smoking, eating crap, drinking coke. Geez.I even drank a beer last night - which I rarely do! I have descided to gradutly wean down on the smokes. I guess I must just start over....I wish this was not so tough on me. I sincerly lack will power.
  15. sascha

    sascha Member

    start to make dietary and life-style changes and notice you are feeling better.

    yes, it is challenging to change habits because we associate those habits with comfort and pleasure, but it IS possible to make new connections that also provide comfort and pleasure.

    i am undisciplined and self-indulgent and really want my comforts, but now am finding quite a feeling of gratification from sticking to my plan. i am discovering the best ways to prepare foods that i can so that i will enjoy foods.

    i'm still in the midst of my struggle, but am sticking with the plan. i try to problem-solve all the time to keep my situation going. right now, my back is out so that's a fun addition to the mix.

    point is - it DOES make a difference eating well and giving up the stuff that doesn't support your well-being.

    raising my functioning level a few notches makes a huge difference day to day, and i like feeling proud of myself that i'm sticking with my plan. best to you- Sascha
  16. Catseye

    Catseye Member

    I only did it because I was forced to. I couldn't get any worse. You can't be that bad off if you can smoke and drink a beer. I couldn't even stand the smell of either one and I used to do both.

    I don't want you to go overboard and do everything bad until you NEED to change, so try to imagine 24 hours of agony and no relief in sight, not even from narcotics. And I'm not talking about pain, just pure hell because your poor body is just flat out broken. You'd be surprised the amount of balanced chemicals it takes to make sure you don't "regret being alive" and feel like your'e dying. When you start feeling good, you won't want the junk.

    But don't dwell on it, just try again. And remember, junk food is an acquired taste. You have to give it time to adjust and acquire a taste for health food. Yes, it sucks and takes awhile but that's the price we pay for freedom: letting food companies make crap and advertise it heavily.

    Sorry! I know this is not what you want to hear but it will be worth it just like any other huge effort in your life.

    You also probably aren't aware of all the goodies at the local health food store. If you start getting stuff from the health food store, if you can afford to, you can get "substitutions" and "transition" foods, like rice crackers and gluten free bread and cookies. And get cashew or almond butter instead of peanut. But that doesn't mean eat all you want of other grains, there's no sub for veggies. And they usually have bins of munchie foods at health food stores, too, like trail mixes (better than the regular grocery store ones), nuts (even stuff like teriyaki marinated almonds), dates (very sweet, will satisfy any sugar craving) and dried fruits. Get rice noodle soups and rice noodles to sub for pasta. See? There's lots of stuff, you just have to look.

    So go to the local health food store and look around and try again! Go there for your dry goods and get your produce cheaper at famer's markets if you have them or just Winn Dixie or whatever.

    good luck!

    karen

    BTW, just in case you come across soy cheese and want to try it, don't bother. I did and it was really weird in a horrible way.
    [This Message was Edited on 02/13/2007]
  17. shar6710

    shar6710 New Member

    If you have tried quitting the junk food "cold turkey" and have failed I agree that you ought to try a gradual change.

    I also think it would be much too stressful to try to change your eating habits and quit smoking at the same time. Maybe you should pick one or the other.

    I can't give advice on quitting smoking but if you decide to start eating healthy maybe pick the thing YOU think is the worst for YOU and stop eating it for 2 weeks. Replace it with something healthier if you must. I've read it takes two weeks for something to begin to develop into a habit. Then move on to the next item; maybe alternate between eliminating bad things and then adding in good things.

    It is not easy to change eating habits and for some it is harder than others. I went on a gluten free diet on my doctor's advice almost a year ago and I am just now ready to attack other dietary issues.

    Sometimes I feel that I've already given up my job, health, independence, sodas and bread I just don't want to give up anything else! But maybe if you go slow and don't put a lot of pressure on yourself and don't set a strict time line you'll get there.

    Good luck,

    Shar