HOW I’M HEALING MY IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME
As a teen I always had gut issues,
I was either bloated..constipated or just felt uncomfortable after everything I ate. To me, I just thought that was normal and something I had to live with. Unfortunately back then I had no knowledge towards Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and I didn’t even think I could prevent the pains and had no idea you could actually cure it.
So in my mind, restricting my intake from food was my only option.. which then spiralled into an eating disorder. At the age of 16 I was diagnosed with sever Anorexia Nervosa, to hear more about my story click here
After a long 2-3 hard years battling my illness with food, and also finally recognising my IBS after being diagnosed - which was the source of the problem (my gut) - I finally had enough.. well more then enough, I wanted health and wanted to start to HEAL my body.
Back then, I still had not much knowledge towards true health, I just had a goal and was willing to try anything to get better. It was around the year of 2014 where instagram blew up, I was following some idols of mine who where eating a vegan diet at the time, so I decided to try it out. It didn’t take me long to switch because I was eating a very strict diet prior towards turning vegan, so to me it was just eating more fruit and veggies.
A year and a bit into eating a vegan diet (It defiantly was the most I ate in a long time keep in mind) I found I felt good from the calories my body desperately needed but my stomach would still play up often, so I decided to become a FULLY raw vegan.. because why not? Everyone else on instagram was doing it, they said it was the best thing for your digestion and that cooked food was heavy on the gut. Little did I know it was THE WORST thing I could of done for my gut, and relationship with food.
What I experienced whilst being a FULLY RAW vegan-
REFLUX- I started to get really bad reflux after all my meals.
FATIGUE- I was eating ALOT but still felt faint, tired and could barley keep my eyes open.
EXTREME HUNGER- on numerous occasions I woke up at ridiculous times of the night (1am-4am) with hunger pains, like sever.. my stomach felt like it was about to eat its self.
AN EVEN WORSE RELATIONSHIP WITH FOOD
RESTRICTED WHEN EATING OUT
ISOLATED MYSELF FROM FAMILY & FRIENDS
One night after experiencing extreme hunger, I “broke” and ate something cooked to finally satisfy my cravings/hunger. I did transition back into a normal vegan diet afterwards.
2016 - 2017
Is the time when my relationship with food began to flourish, I was eating ALOT and was loving it.. I still was restricted due to my vegan diet but I also felt it was somewhat normal because again, everyone on instagram was doing it.
2017 - Jan 2018
I found my IBS was getting worse. I started to regularly see a nutritionist who was getting me to follow the ‘low fod map’ diet. I defiantly felt some improvements, but also found it to be VERY restrictive seeing as though majority of what you eat on a vegan diet was HIGH in the fod map (bad for IBS)
I continued for weeks, but broke because it was too restrictive and I felt my bad habits with my relationship towards food was creeping there way back in.
Is when shit got serious. I could go weeks without having any bowel movements, I was puffy, inflamed and uncomfortable every moment of everyday. I would have flares within my stomach at least 4-5 times a week. for a few months I was forced to go back onto a LOW FOD MAP diet again, it helped a little but I was still very restricted and was still suffering with regular flares (less but still 2-4 times a week) / constant gas / reflux etc. I then found out I was intolerant to soy.. and thats when I broke.
Everything I could eat on a vegan diet - beans, veggies, fruit, tofu, tempeh - I couldn’t digest without having a flare and being in pain. I was exhausted, I lost 7kg in 1.5 months, I was afraid to eat and my relationship with food was hanging by a thread, I had enough.
I quit a vegan diet. I introduced eggs at first, then white meat and fish.
The improvements I felt when changing up my diet
My energy levels went through the roof
I started to have bowel movements at least 2-3 times a week.
I stopped having stomach flares
Im no longer gassy/ farting/ experiencing reflux
My hunger came back
I haven’t had a stomach flare since the week I stopped being vegan
I feel stronger within my workouts
I feel good after food and hardly bloat
My relationship with food is the best its EVER been
I’m the leanest yet strongest I have ever felt
6 steps that helped me to heal my ibs
Eating little to no raw veggies -
Most vegetables contain either OLIGOS, FRUCTOSE or POLYOLS which can irritate the gut, and raw vegetables are so much harder to digest then cooked.
REDUCING MY FIBRE INTAKE -
Fibre is hard to digest and can put so much stress on the gut, I still eat nourishing meals but I have defiantly limited the amount of veg and fruit I consume, focusing more on protein and fats. If you’re worried about reducing greens from your diet, you can actually get all the greens you need from spirulina.
Drink bone broth
I know.. sounds yuck, but its done WONDERFUL things with helping me heal my gut.. seriously, look it up! its a ‘superfood’ when it comes to the gut! You can literally feel it working and soothing the belly when you drink it. I also take nutraorganis collagen and gelatin which is also showing huge benefits (Use my code CEE20 for 20% off)
Keep it simple!
Your gut loves simplicity, don’t over do it on ingredients, ‘super foods’ or supplements. Overall just find the foods that work for you, stick to them, keep it simple keep it whole.
SLOW DOWN and RELAX.
When you are running 100 miles an hour it puts a lot of stress and pressure on your digestion, and stress aggravate the gut. So do your best to reduce any stress and take time out of your days to relax.
find what works for you
Yo, we are all different! so don’t just do what others do.. if you feel better eating oatmeal for dinner over salads..then do that! #FINDYOBALANCE
find the foods that don’t work for you!
After applying the above steps for healing my gut, I was then able to introduce different foods, helping to find the ones that really set off my bowel and what doesn’t. My massive no no’s are;
to many veggie in one sitting
all citrus fruits
onion & garlic
heavy dairy products
other information on healing the gut that can be useful
I hope these little tips have helped you,
as you guys know i’m super passionate about helping girls heal their gut because trust me, I know how depressing it can be but I also know how much it can control your life and how damaging it can be with your relationship with food. I’m working hard in spreading the awareness with IBS or any gut issues.
Love you loads, CEE xx
FOOD IS TO HELP US THRIVE, FOOD IS TO NOURISH
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