So, you feel like crap…
Do you suspect that there was a time when you felt better than you do today? You can’t really put your finger on it. Maybe you had more energy. Perhaps you could eat with less discomfort. Your skin didn’t feel so dry and itchy. Your breakouts felt more “age appropriate”. You just generally felt more vibrant.
What if I told you that there is a possibility that this isn’t normal aging? What if I said that your body may be suffering from inflammation. And this inflammation is making you feel like crap.
But the good news is that there are things to address in your diet that may lift the fog under which you’ve been living and help you rewind time to feel good again! Here are some of the most common reasons you aren’t feeling your best and the steps you can take to heal.
You are negatively reacting to a food
There are certain foods that are problematic to a large number of people. This includes foods like dairy, soy, gluten, eggs and corn. And you don’t need to be allergic to these foods for them to be problematic. You may have when it called a sensitivity. This food doesn’t create the same immune response as an allergy, but it does create enough of a reaction to cause inflammation. And the result of this inflammation will be things like brain fog, skin problems, depression, migraines or you may just feel like crap.
Doctor’s can’t test for a food sensitivity in the same way they test for allergies. This is because a sensitivity is a different type of immune response. The best way to determine if a food is causing you problems is to eliminate it for at least three weeks. This allows you to see if symptoms disappear and then return upon eating the food again. Such a response would indicate a food sensitivity. Just remember; it can take up to 72 hours for symptoms to appear so be patient. Learn more about doing an elimination diet by clicking here.
You’re eating more sugar than you think
It is wrong to think that you don’t eat sugar because you don’t eat a lot of desserts. Sugar is a major ingredient in most processed foods as well as most restaurant meals. Most people’s sugar consumption is significantly higher than they think. Some years ago I decided to become vigilant about reading labels and I cut all refined sugar and artificial sweetener from my diet (except for one “totally worth it” treat a week.) My skin cleared up, I lost about 10 pounds without trying and I physically felt like a weight had been lifted. Sugar and artificial sweeteners are both extremely inflammatory.
Take a label reading challenge. For a week, don’t eat anything from a can, bag or box without reading a label first. You may be surprised with how much sugar you’re ingesting. And this could be integral to understanding how to help yourself feel better.
Start by downloading your free sugar cheat sheet to help you identify the sneaky ways that sugar is hidden on a food label. My bet is you didn’t know that some of these were terms for sugar!
You have Candida
Candida is a yeast which can run amok in your body and make you feel like crap. The good bacteria in your digestive tract are supposed to keep the yeast in balance. When your good bacteria are compromised, the yeast runs wild throughout your body causing internal chaos. This can begin after taking multiple courses of antibiotics, years of birth control pills or from eating an inflammatory diet. A hint that you have Candida is that you have very strong sugar cravings as Candida feeds of sugar. However, the only way to know for sure is to get tested. Healing Candida usually means removing all forms of sugar from the diet, replenishing the digestive tract with good bacteria, and calming the inflammation with things like Vitamin E, Glutamine and flaxseed oil.
You’re suffering from malnutrition
Here is an interesting fact. Those with the highest percentage of body fat in Western societies tend to be more malnourished than those living in third world countries. How can that be? The foods that put the body in fat storing mode are nutritionally empty. So it is possible to be eating excess calories while the cells in your body starve. And you wonder why you feel so empty when you should feel so full. This then contributes to further overeating. Your body commands you to eat food as self-preservation. And of course, malnutrition makes you feel like crap.
When people embark on a new weight-loss plan, they often start by restricting their food intake. But this is damaging to someone suffering from malnutrition. A good first step is to add supportive foods before you restrict the diet. This means the first step to diet change might be adding fresh vegetables or a good source of protein to every meal.
Take time to understand your body’s needs
We’re not all the same and your body’s needs are unique. Take the time to get to know your body. Understand how you react to food. And then focus on healing.
Healing isn’t as easy as just waving a nutritional magic wand. There is a process to discovering what is throwing your body off-balance. Be patient with yourself. You don’t have to feel less than vibrant and healthy as the years pass. But it is up to you to take the time to create body balance. Before you know it you’ll go from feeling “blah’ to feeling brilliant!