I never could relate very much to those people who seemed so “in tune” with their bodies and their senses. People who taste something and can say things like, “Is their aspartame in that?” or “wow, is that a bit of brown sugar?”
I would look at them in confusion and have to look at the actual ingredients in order to confirm or deny. I’d think: Really,? How do you taste things like that?
It’s like my senses have been dead all this time. Totally and completely rendered useless by eating fake ingredients and “filler” items filled with wheat and grains.
Doing this whole wheat free thing is changing me – it’s like I’m waking up all my previously dead senses. It’s weirdly exciting to be able to identify more flavors naturally. To appreciate real food. It’s also scary to think that for a long time, I wasn’t really aware of how salty something was, or how overly sweet things were. They just were categorized in my mind as “snacky” or “dessert!” I had a hard time discerning when something was sweet vs. sour, or rich in flavor. I’ve also just become more aware of how I feel after I eat something that is either “good for me” or “off track.”
A Few Instances
I’ve noticed a considerable decrease in my need for salt over the past few weeks. I come from a family of “salters” – and my hubby used to hassle me about it all the time. I made a major effort to decrease my need to salt things over the last few years – but it was more because I knew I shouldn’t eat so much salt, not because I didn’t want it. But this month – I just don’t need as much. I don’t want things to be so salty. And for really what may be the first time in my life I’ve said this: Sometimes, things are TOO salty!
For instance, the other night I went out with my good friend to catch up – we had some wine and ordered a few appetizers to share. It was pretty limited because I’m on a no wheat thing and she’s doing no dairy. Fortunately, they had some olives and smoked almonds – so that’s what we ordered. I’m not a huge fan of almonds, but compared to some of the other choices, it seemed like the safest bet. They were actually pretty good – but way too salty. I found myself wanting to roll them around on a napkin first (which I didn’t really do because it was a nice place and I didn’t want people to look at me weird).
This weekend – we had sort of a crazy few days of eating “out of the ordinary” because we visited my family (Unless you consider eating ice cream cake “ordinary” of course).
At the beginning of our challenge – hubby and I agreed we would have 2 cheat days where you could eat whatever you wanted with no judgement from the other. I hadn’t cheated until this weekend and I just took both my cheat days in a row and now it’s over with. The weird part? I’m glad that I won’t be cheating any this week – because I actually feel sort of crappy today.
Sort of like a fog is in my brain, and despite having more sleep than usual (like 8.5 hours) – I woke up groggy and tired. And I’m still tired now even after a cup of coffee. *sigh*
I felt sort of like that yesterday when I woke up as well. My husband and I kept saying – why are we tired? We both slept a decent amount! It wasn’t until this morning we realized we were feeling the impact of eating “off plan.” After all, I had bread last night! We went out for our city’s restaurant week where a bunch of nice places offer a 3 course meal for $30/person. So it’s a good chance to try a new place, or a place that you wouldn’t normally be able to afford. It was DELICIOUS, but I did order for my first course this Crab Pimento Cheese dip and it came with pita chips. Of course, they also brought bread to our table and since I was cheating – I had a slice. It was weird – it tasted super sweet to me.
So – that was my cheat yesterday. The day before we had 2 slices of oreo cookie ice cream cake (it was my nephew’s birthday and NO the 2 slices were not in a row!). And I guess I’m paying the price today. Weird how just a few weeks can really change your body, your senses, and create a lot of awareness about how your body is impacted by certain ingredients. It’s like I’m having this new awareness ABOUT my new level of awareness and it’s sort of cool. Things are starting to come together – the pieces of the puzzle (if you will) are starting to form a picture.
I’m learning to listen to my body. And while that may not always be enough to get me to actually make the BEST decision – it’s way better than I was before! And I know that there is something to this when my husband actually says this morning: “Have you noticed me snoring at night lately? I know I snored last night because my throat hurts.” And I realized – he hasn’t been snoring as much since we started this whole thing – almost like he could breathe better while avoiding the wheat products. And last night – he had wheat and work up with a sore throat from snoring. Coincidence? I don’t think so.
I guess sometimes we don’t even realize we are harming our bodies, or are suffering unnecessarily until you actually change something and realize you feel better without it. Despite feeling a little foggy today – this new understanding about my body and how different food impacts it has never been clearer. Best thing of all: I’m totally looking forward to all my wheat free meals this week because I know they will help me feel more focused at work, more energetic during the day/during my workouts and help me to avoid senseless snacking on bad for me foods.
It’s almost like magic – except it’s real. Real Food, who would have thought?