This past week I cut out a few items in my diet: salt, man-made carbohydrates and sugar. It always surprises me how quickly my body changes if I'm persistent, even for a short period of time.
Salt: the first day I didn't add salt to my cooking, I felt like I was sacrificing a lot and was surprised that it's easier to give up sugar than salt. Everything I ate tasted bland, and I had to actually put some mental effort not to grab the salt shaker--at one point, I noticed I reached for the shaker without thinking. I had no idea I had become such a salt fiend.
Surprise: After a day or two, I started to discover the flavor of foods. Things tasted differently to the point that I didn't even miss salt. Scrambled eggs, homemade salad dressing and sweet potatoes taste fine without salt. I'm shocked that I noticed a difference after a day and am considering putting the salt shaker back with the rest of the spices in the cupboard.
Man-made Carbs: At the beginning of the week I had a bit of a challenge wrapping my head around finding carbs that were not man made and gluten free. Bread, we take that for granted. It's super hard to find gluten free bread that doesn't look dry and cardboard tasting. I plan on making some with rice flour one day soon. (Note: gluten free is only for a few months to rule out a gluten sensitivity.)
Surprise:By the end of the week, I found that I needed heavier carbs for my energy. Not being able to grab bread or tortillas or a bun, I noticed that fruit alone wasn't enough carbohydrate load for my body's need. Adding sweet potatoes, beans and brown rice did the trick.
Sugar: This is a no brainer. When is sugar ever a good thing to put in our body? Sure, it does so much for the soul, but really, we can live healthy without it. At the beginning of the week, I noticed I did have cravings and I actually took a bite of something the kids were eating, but that was it. (I won't spend much time on this since I have oodles of other posts on my thoughts and struggles with sugar.)
Surprise: By the end of the week, I once again found the strength to be stronger than the cookie. We went to a Arrow of Light Cub Scout Ceremony last night and there were some wonderful desserts I would have liked to have a plate of. I was shocked that I didn't look twice. (Okay, I'll be honest, I did.) I was ecstatic that I actually took a moment to visualize what I would feel like if I indulged. I thought about the sugar coated throat I will feel after eating my weights-worth, and I found that a simple whiff of the gooey goodness of Smore brownies was enough to satisfy me.
I feel good. I feel empowered. A week ago I felt a bit out of control, like I couldn't say no to the things I loved and that brought comfort. I honestly started this hormone balancing program with severe doubts since the first month is a bit strict, for obvious reasons. In weight loss, it's not just about your brain making the decision, it's the way your body reacts to the food you feed it. Just removing three things from my diet, I can feel my body responding, and this helps when my brain is weak. I am honestly surprised that I feel strong enough to make changes that are going to better my health, only after a week. Never underestimate the power one week can bring.