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My logical mind leaves the room
Some people are just not ready to heal yet, I know, in some moments, I’m still one of these people. When tempted by foods I shouldn’t eat I still occasionally become unconscious (the “me” that has logic and reasoning has left the room!) and I tell myself I can eat those foods and when I do, I sabotage my healing.
In the last 15 or so years I became aware to some extent that I was holding onto some pattern to remain sick, but I just couldn’t, for the life of me, connect to or feel what that pattern was. How could I understand something I couldn’t feel or sense at all? How can anyone? This pattern was coming from my unconscious mind.
I looked at how I would feel if I was truly well and could do the things I thought I wanted to do. Mostly my goal for getting well was to be able to eat all the food I used to eat again and this was my strongest motivating force for years!
Am I passionless or just plain scared?
I asked myself if I was using my sickness so I didn’t have to find out if I really could create and be passionate about something in my life. The answer I got was a probable yes, I wasn’t really prepared to confront my lack of passion to do anything. I really thought I didn’t have any passion for any worldly projects, I have since found I was completely wrong about this.
One thing I was and still am passionate about is self awareness, which is just as well as it has slowly led me to understand the mechanisms inside myself that have kept me where I have been – sick.
A victim of my own anger
This unrevealed pattern has taken a fair bit of time to reveal itself. Over this time of unravelling I have gradually dropped being a victim of my sickness. I stopped getting angry and depressed and started coming to terms with the fact I was indeed sick. I realised I had become a victim of my own persecution of myself and I was angry and depressed that I couldn’t get well.
Dealing with guilt
Another thing I had to deal with was guilt. My partner Ian had to (in my words) put up with me and my complaining and my lack of contribution. It was hard because he worried about me when I complained but if I didn’t he would want me to do lots of things I just wasn’t capable of. I tried to find a way to tell him I wasn’t feeling well enough without him becoming concerned but this turned out to be impossible. I realised I just had to deal with his worry about me but this has not been at all easy.
Depression was really anger
What I started to realise is that when I was depressed I would become aware that in fact I was angry, and with this awareness I sat in and allowed my anger. This shift in the way I handled my depression caused me to begin to be a lot more gentle with myself. The fact was, I was sick and there were times when I had no energy and I wasn’t capable of doing all the things I believed I should be doing.
This gentleness that arose from my acceptance has been I believe the beginning of the unravelling of my pattern. The gentleness allowed more space within me to clearly and gently look at myself.
Oh my goodness am I good at sabotage!
Next came something I would have never believed I could do at the time but never underestimate sabotage! I had been doing really well on this program. I had been on it for a year and was starting to get great signs of healing and then I travelled to Italy. I ate some Italian sour dough bread and felt well and lost my ability to think. My diet went to hell in a hand basket! After six months of eating and drinking in Italy my health packed up and left!
I have had some serious work to do to get healthy again and it hasn’t been fast or easy! You see I had really not come to terms with the fact I could never eat like I used to again.
The dawning of self kindness
After this sojourn, it slowly, slowly dawned on me that if indeed I wanted health, and indeed great health, I would need be being really kind to myself and not eat these high carb foods at all.
I’m maybe carbohydrate intolerant?
Dr Jay Wortman (who did a study on the Canadian Eskimos and made a movie of it using the LCHF diet called My Big Fat Diet) told me that I was probably carbohydrate intolerant. What this meant was that I would never be one of the ‘normal’ food eaters again. I don’t think I truly let this understanding in all at once. It came little my little, by studying more of what it meant for the health of ‘normal’ people to eat the ‘normal’ foods. ‘Normal’ people don’t do well either on the same foods I could no longer eat and understanding this was like turning up the lights in a very dim room.
With the understanding that I would probably never be able to eat all the foods I used to eat came a grieving process with lots of bargaining and denial, just like when you have lost someone you love!
Denial and bargaining – the grieving process
I see this denial and bargaining happening to so many people with ill health. My friend Gerry, who is a MD, says most people will not give up the habits which are making them sick and this frustrates him so much.
In a strange way because I was so obviously sick and because I badly wanted to be well I was lucky. Ian, my husband, believed he was healthy like so many other people do, until the day it all fell apart when he found out he had bad osteoporosis.
People say to me now as they are getting a bit older “I found out I have cancer!” or “I have been diagnosed with arthritis!,” and add indignantly, “I cannot understand it, I have been so healthy my whole life!”
Is it true that these people have been healthy their whole life till now? Certainly outwardly they seem to have been fortunate, then why has this sickness “all of a sudden” happened? The truth is that for Ian there were always signs of something that was not quite right in his body but these signs were ignored, they couldn’t be possibly be real because of his conviction he was healthy and there was nothing that his body could tell him that could help him to understand all wasn’t quite as it seemed.
Passion for life replaces passion for eating bread
My motivating force for getting well has now truly changed, in fact getting healthy has been really only a sideline of the great event of discovering what my subconscious mind was trying to hide from me. I truly now see myself as empowered towards something far greater than just being able to eat what everyone else can eat. I have found my passion, even though it still at times it runs away and hides for a bit when I get scared. I want to help people, I adore helping and this is what this blog is for.
Is ‘normal’ what I want?
So a ‘normal’ diet is not for me and in truth most of us do not want to hear that it’s not good for any of us.
Eating high carbohydrate along with high acidity foods will lead to ill health even in the most ‘healthy’ people. I have done enough research and observation of people around the world to see that the ‘normal’ diet will lead all people to ill health.
Unpacking the box of the unconscious mind
Join me in this great adventure of discovering the wonders and passion that are here within us when we start to unpack the box of our subconscious mind.
Jeepers have I been having some adventures here in Italy and now the UK.
I now really know how hard it is to eat travelling if you can’t afford to eat at a restaurant and can’t cook for yourself.
I have just visited my nephew in London and his girlfriend, Lili. They live what is probably a typical London life in the sense they don’t cook. They eat only organic foods but the organic foods they tend to mostly eat are organic snack foods. They aren’t vegetarian but I guess for them meat is not really an ethical substance to eat, so there is little meat eating going on.
As a result I noticed Lili needed to snack very frequently as her blood sugar levels started to drop. Her breakfast of porridge or muesli with oat milk sustained her for, at most, 2 hours then she needed another carbohydrate food fix. Jonathan, my nephew commented that when they were on holiday away from home, Lili’s main priority was where her next two meals were coming from.
My nephew did, bless his cotton socks, try to do the diet last year, but he had friends who stayed who were ‘great cooks’ so he ate what they cooked. Who wouldn’t at age 32 or even 52? Except of course for someone who is rather health challenged and absolutely sick of being sick.
Everywhere I looked in London cafes there was only (except for a salad which only the hardy would choose on a cold summers day!) bread based snacks to eat. What hope has the average Londoner out and about have?
On the flight to London I looked at the menu offerings interested to see if there was anything that wasn’t bread based and that wasn’t just junk food (like chips). Not a thing. Ian and I had bought some pistachios with us and our own water filter bottle so the airline didn’t get any more revenue from us.
When Lilli mentioned to me very quietly that she needed to snack a lot, I said it was because she wasn’t getting much protein or fats from the foods she eats so she will become hungry often. She also mentioned she had a chronic sore throat and I suggested to try eliminating some foods to see if they might be the culprit, as in my experience it usually is. She told me a friend did a weeks fast and that had fixed her so maybe that’s is all she needed to do. Maybe it might work short term, but I doubt it very much.
I watched Jonathan opening and closing the fridge often to see if there is something in there to tempt him. This is exactly what I used to do, looking in the fridge for something to satisfy a craving, but what is the craving? I think it was probably for protein and fats.
I offered to cook Jonathan the same breakfast that Ian and I had every morning and I noticed after he had eaten this meal he did not snack or indeed didn’t eat till dinnertime.
Back here in Italy,with my friend Heidi and her partner Mark, there is a continuous snacking also on carbohydrate foods. Mark is a diabetic as is eating a high carbohydrate diet so of course he needs to frequently snack on these foods. Diabetics (also now referred to a carbohydrate intolerance) are diabetics BECAUSE of the high carb food they eat, with the end result of insulin resistance, being from your bodies attempts to manage carbs.
Heidi looks at our lunch when we dine together, and says there is no way she would be full enough eating what we eat.
I understand the addiction so well and this is why it becomes so hard to even try to change people’s mind. Only when the pain is enough, and for some this never eventuates, even with the verdict of cancer in fact. Just like someone with lung cancer who continues to smoke we couldn’t dream of life without our our high carbohydrate foods.
Italy on a alkaline paleo diet….hmm…. can I tell you about the cakes? Northern Italy has the best cream cakes ever, well probably not as good as Holland but…France has the crustiest bread and the cherries and peaches in Italia are out of this world! All these things have been absolutely no no’s for me since I started using the Paleo diet and getting well a year ago. Oh, I haven’t mentioned the Italian wines!
I had been a year and a half on the Paleo diet and then….
I had been getting really, really well on this diet. Yes, I still had some ups and downs but mostly ups. You know what they say about relationships? If you have more ups than downs then your relationship is probably a good one. I think the same thing goes for diet, my relationship with food was fantastico as I was getting well and there was plenty of good times! I loved my food and my food was loving me.
But First My History in Abbreviation
First, let me tell you where I have been, heath wise. I have had stomach problems all my life. I was diagnosed with IBS about 12 years ago. I have and am absolutely intolerant of gluten (from grains) and casein (from milk) . I hadn’t eaten either of these for quite a few years and didn’t realise how much this fact had aided in my healing and in a much easier transition to the Paleo diet.
The long haul flight from Australia to Italy gave me little to no trouble. I slept for a bit the day I arrived and then I was all ok and ready for adventure. This story was very, very different to the flight back which I will tell about a bit later.
My Sister and I go insane with the Wheat Gluten and Dairy Opioids
At the beginning of my European trip, I joined my sister on a canal barge trip on the Canal Du Midi in France. There my sister and I went literally insane and out of our minds! We went on a wheat baguette and butter feeding frenzy. We pushed the limits and it wasn’t a pretty sight. We were stuffing the break sticks in as fast as we could buy them and after these for breakfast we then indulged in French pastries, after all, we weren’t going to ever have them again were we?
After leaving her, things got a bit better, but the deliciousness of Paleo food had faded quite a bit and the old gluten and dairy hunger was starting to seek me out and get to me. Even though I stayed away from pasta, I had convinced myself that the sourdough Italian bread was ok for me.
The oh so lovely fruit
When I get back to Italy the cherry season is on and the farm I am staying at have cherry trees with the most exquisite cherries in the history of cherry taste. Put some cherries and yoghurt together for breakfast and the normal eggs, tomato and bacon deliciousness, which I had been enjoying enormously, go out the window Talk about the fructose/ sugar addiction!
And then the peach season arrived… I have not a problem with peaches in Australia. They are tasteless and I don’t want them but in Italia? They are so full of juicy flavour.
But the fruit was starting to really give me obvious symptoms so I gave it up after not too long.
For six months I treated my body & mind to sourdough bread, not a lot, but regularly. I also ate cheese and butter and many other little bits and pieces including some pannacotta and cream eclairs.
And then of course we take a sojourn up north. My beloved and I were so in love with the cakes we had them sometimes twice a day.
The dairy was giving me constant constipation but I was not going to be outfoxed by my body. I was going to be more stubborn even if it left me for more than a week without going. Trouble is I tolerate constipation really well unlike my beloved who has a fit even if he hasn’t gone for just one day!
Around the 4th or 5th month I start getting some of my old symptoms back. I have lasted pretty well so far so I am not unduly worried. I tell myself I will go back on the diet when I get back to Australia. No worries!
The Flight Back Home Was Not a Breeze
One of the things that really was different on the flight back home was that my ankles and calves swelled up and this lasted for days. This is something that has never happened to me on any long haul flights. Ok I am now 52, but six months ago on my trip over to Italia there wasn’t a sign of swelling.
Back in Australia and so tired
Oh my God talk about jet lag. So, so tired just can’t stay awake for days on end, but I am in denial and I don’t recognize for ages the correlation between my diet in the last six months and the enormous difference in my trip there compared to my trip back.
Going back on the Paleo Diet wasn’t at all easy
I thought this would be a breeze. After all I hadn’t eaten all that much carb had I? I would need to just put up with the usual change over to ketone burning tiredness for a few weeks and all would be good yes? No! I had done damage, more damage than I was willing, or could admit to. I was in a state of mind fog and in that state my brain is not thinking at all well. Still I thought it wouldn’t take long. But the gluten, casein and wine consumption had put me back way further than I had been when I first started the Paleo diet 2 years ago.
One thing though, I stubbornly would not given up the dairy, in the form of cream for my decaf coffee. It was the best cream, pastured cows, organic and I ate a bit of butter. How can this hurt. I had conquered my body and was not longer getting constipation the fact the the stuff was a bit odd looking didn’t matter did it? I was going everyday! The milk opioids had got me in their clutches and they were fighting for supremacy to reign as king of me.
My liver hurt if I even touched it or lay on my side. It was working so hard to detoxify my body!
After over 5 months I finally got it. The tiredness hadn’t left me and so I finally gave up the dairy and wallah ( well after much self pity and a few tears), my energy finally came good again.
The stomach pain which had also started to get worse and worse got better.
I’m going back to Italy this month, am I an idiot?
I sure hope not. There is plenty to eat in Italia that suits a Paleo diet. On the menu there is always “secondi piatti” or second plates, which are all meat dishes. I will need to eat plenty of olive oil on it though to make me full.
I can also eat their salami’s. I will boil plenty of eggs to eat when there is nothing else. I will take some coconut oil with me but I will need to order some more from somewhere else as Italy does not have it at all, well, it didn’t 6 months ago.
The San Pelegrino mineral water is nice and alkaline and it is beautiful with a squeeze of lemon. It replaces wine most admirably.
There is always plenty of good vegetables to eat, eggplant, beautiful tomatoes and plenty of leafy greens and I have an organic butcher close to where I will mostly stay.
There is also plenty of buffalo milk products such as mozarella and butter which I will test out and see if I can tolerate them.
We will see if I succeed. I know I can’t go back to the way I ate last time I was there.
I will make some movies of my food while I am there and keep you up to date. What an odyssey eh? You see I love Italy, I love the way the people are and so this will be a challenge to see whether I can put my focus on other good and wonderful things other than the food.
….oh I didn’t tell you about the coffee……….