Does the route to chronic wellness ever leave you feeling totally overwhelmed?
You’re not alone. I hear that! On Sunday this week I was at home recovering from a stomach bug whilst my family went to a village fair without me 😦
I felt too rubbish to read, which is a shame as a whole day of reading could have made a real dent in my huge ‘to read’ pile. So I turned to good old Netflix for a different method of research, the documentary.
On my path to wellness I am researching and trying lots and lots of things.
Some I know work for me and therefore the only challenge is building them into a regular routine (things like yoga, meditation and mindfulness). But other areas I am still searching for the right solution, something that works for me, that I can fit into my routine as a wife, mum and employee, and that hopefully benefits my symptoms in a positive way. These questions marks hang mainly over exercise and nutrition.
This it’s where I start to become overwhelmed.
And my binge documentarying on Sunday didn’t help this confusion! For every scientist, doctor, dietician or expert telling you one thing (of course backed up by tons of science and research etc. etc.), there is another telling you something else, and at times even the opposite!
As I was already feeling pretty wiped and exhausted at the time, this overwhelm became too much. I felt like my head was going to explode! I feel so motivated to make changes but so confused about what changes to make that it freezes me in to a constant state of stuck! Unsure what to do or which way to move for the best.
So here is what I’ve worked out so far:
- Lowering carbs and sugars (particularly white refined ones) helps to stabilise blood sugar, which as well as diabetes can have amazing positive effects on numerous chronic illnesses (I also tried this and it did have a great effect, but is a little heavy on the animal product for my liking as a single route);
- Increasing protein and fat helps to keep you feeling full, making you feel less hungry and crave less of those pesky refined carbs and sugars;
- Large amounts of animal products can be bad for you and certainly bad for the environment;
- Plant based nutrition is very good for you and able to provide almost all of the nutrients your body needs, but can be harder (not impossible) to work alongside a lower carb, higher protein and fat diet;
- Gluten and dairy seem to aggravate a lot of people. This is not always felt as tummy complaints, but can also lead to greater inflammation in the body, which can increase chronic ill health symptoms (I actually cut wheat out of my life 5 years ago because I can’t tolerate it at all);
- Processed foods aren’t great due to hidden baddies within them (e.g. MSG, Aspartame etc.), the general rule of thumb being the more ingredients on the ingredient list the better to avoid.
- Organic is good as it reduces the intake of toxins into the body, but shouldn’t be a limiting factor. I.e. a wide variety of veg is essential and amazing, organic or not. If you can afford organic great, if not don’t let that hold you back;
- Some veg absorbs more toxins than others, so have greater benefits (or less disbenefits) being grown organically, there are plenty of lists online, so you can easily look it up if you want to know more:
- Certain vitamins and mineral deficiencies are more prevalent alongside certain illnesses, meaning there may be particular supplements that could help your individual circumstances, this may be worth looking into. Also vitamin D deficiency, which causes fatigue, is common when less sunlight is available (hello UK!) and so a supplement of that is certainly a good idea if sunshine is lacking in your life!
So there it is so far. Now I just need to formulate that into a workable diet for a busy working family, without a huge heap of time and money attached, and without having to cook multiple meals for multiple family members and I’m on my way to a winner (gulp!).
When I get there I’ll let you know!
PS I’ll post the cake recipe next week