Tuesday, March 18, 2014

FoodSanity(1.0)

We’ve been on an interesting journey in my family.

Fifteen months ago Moe (my lovely bride of 37 years) informed me that she felt we needed to eliminate processed sugar and high fructose corn syrup from our diet.  As always, my response to her wishes was, "OK." However, my mind was revolting as I LOVE sweets.  I preferred to have dessert at least once a day, and would often munch on Skittles, jelly beans, candy corn, or orange slices while driving.  The sweeter it was, the more I liked it.  Of course, sugared drinks like sodas and Gatorade were out, too.

But, quit the sweet stuff I did.  I quickly began dropping weight, though that was not the motivation for our change in diet.  Moe was convinced that we were poisoning ourselves with those substances (and I began to come to the same belief).  Dr. Robert Lustig provides some serious empirical support for that conclusion. 

Some eight months after that sugar and high fructose corn syrup curtailment began, I invited Dr. Ben Edwards to speak to the staff of the school where I work (Guthrie CSD in Guthrie, Texas).  Dr. Edwards not only confirmed our suspicions about sugary products, he also made some assertions about grain-based and highly processed foods.  He recommended reading Wheat Belly, which we did.  Boy, what an eye-opener that book was!  So, beginning five months ago we also eliminated processed wheat, and virtually all other grain-based products, from our diet.

I know, I know.  nc is sounding downright crazy, huh?  Please hear me out.  

Here's where we are, to date:  Moe and I consume, inasmuch as possible, only organically grown fruits and vegetables.  No genetically modified foods, no foods treated with pesticides or herbicides.   And, we only eat grass-fed, grass-finished meats.

The results?  
- I've dropped about 25 pounds in the last 15 months (now very near my high school graduation weight).  Again, weight loss was never a goal as I did not consider myself overweight. The weight just melted off. 
- I have now been completely off prescription blood pressure medicine for about five months, and my blood pressure maintains low end normal.  My blood pressure had run high normal to high for the last 25 years.
- I have not taken nor needed antacids of any kind for the last five months.  This is remarkable as I had battled heartburn and acid reflux for about a decade, and was taking over-the-counter antacids daily, per physician advice, for the last seven years.
- Finally, I had developed an ugly and growing lipoma on my back a few years back.  It had continued to grow and become more unsightly.  During my annual physical exams my physician would simply shrug and say that, yep, it was a lipoma.  In just the last few months, the lipoma has now almost disappeared.

Here's a foundational tenet of my newfound approach to nutrition and wellness:

"Our food IS our medicine."

There's a corollary to that tenet, too:  "Our food can be our poison."  I am convinced that it was for me, for decades.  Don't know what I was thinking...

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