Trevor and I don’t make resolutions, but we do set goals and implement changes for ourselves. The biggest lifestyle change we wanted to implement is a more plant-based diet, especially as my body seems to be medically demanding it. So in order to hold ourselves accountable, we’ll be sharing this journey on NautilusMODE to show that living simple definitely applies to what you put in your body.
Allyson Going Vegan and Low-Gluten
I’ve been full vegetarian since 2008, but I’ve been eating mostly vegetarian since I was a kid. I’ve never liked the taste of meat (especially seafood and beef), but I’ve especially never enjoyed the texture. So, when I realized I had power over what I consumed, I eliminated what I didn’t like.
Fast forward to now when my medical team has identified most of my health issues labelled: every thing I do, every change I make, I check with them first. From fall last year I’ve been warning them that I’ll be going vegan, and their response shocked me. “Okay, that sounds like a good fit for your needs.” That was it. My primary physician insisted I get annual blood work to monitor macro and micro nutrient levels, which I’d already been doing, so nothing’s really changed there.
I’ve got lactose sensitivity, which is such a bummer. Imagine loving ice cream, but every time you ate it it felt like someone was standing on your stomach. It’s awful, and the end of 2016 I eliminated all dairy from my diet. Being pain-free is amazing. I’m happier and less irritable. I don’t say stupid things, or talk before I think it through; I’m focused on living instead of how my gut feels. It’s awesome!
As for gluten…well, it’s an inflammatory. I’ve noticed that my asthma symptoms are minimal when I don’t consume it. Being able to breathe without pain takes precedent over everything else for me (I get shooting pains all over, with every inhale, during an asthma attack). However, going cold-turkey hasn’t ever worked for me, so I’ll be easing myself off of it throughout the year.
Trevor Mostly Vegetarian and Ditching Sugary/Fatty Foods
Trevor’s been eating mostly vegetarian since we’ve gotten married. This isn’t more or less just out of circumstance as he doesn’t have cravings for meat. Not to mention it certainly helps to keep grocery costs down when he moved out on his own. (Meat is expensive!) He still gets meat when we dine out but never makes a point to pick anything up at the grocery store. No major changes here.
The biggest thing Trevor is going to try to improve his health is ditch extra sugar and heavy foods. This means coffee and tea preferably black, no more ice cream in the freezer and no more sugary treats to snack on such as cookies and soda. Working a desk job, it’s easy to obtain these snacks and maintain a super sedentary lifestyle. As he wants to get back to a healthy weight and not let his sedentary job’s nature cause future health issues, he feels now is the time to act before his body starts degenerating with age. Isn’t that what everyone is their late 20’s worries about?
As far as food goes, we mostly had veggie wraps or rice with veggies for meals. Wednesday night we had drive-through Taco Bell: Trevor got chicken chalupas with nacho cheese, I got a crunchwrap with no meat, no cheese, but with sour cream (on accident). Thursday night we had over a friend and went all out with Domino’s Pizza: I got thin crust with light sauce, no cheese, pineapple, jalapeño, black olives which I topped with spinach and salsa (I’d had a smoothie and celery for breakfast and lunch); Trevor shared his pizza of steak and cheeses with our friend.
How Allyson Feels
It wasn’t the best first week for food, with two slip-ups out, but overall I feel lighter. Less bloat is definitely going on, plus my stomach only hurt the night I had sour cream. Pain free eating is awesome and I’m really happy I eliminated dairy (this week just affirmed my feelings on the matter). Best choice ever.
I’ve noticed I’m falling asleep faster and I’ve got the feeling of more energy when I’m awake. I’m not drinking coffee, which is great for my migraines, and I’ve been having one cup of chai tea with non-dairy creamer in the late afternoon/before dinner.
At this moment in time we don’t have a tape measure (I cut it in half…whoops!), but we’ll get one soon to provide measurements the first Saturday of every month.
How Trevor Feels
Trevor: I have felt incredibly energetic and have had zero need for caffeine to get moving in the morning. I attribute this entirely to eating healthier than ever this past week. I have been cutting back on coffee/tea/and yes cringe even soda as a way to get myself awake an aware for the day for about the first half of 2016. Although I got used to limited caffeine for a while now, I have felt the afternoon slump for the second half of 2016 and usually going for coffee/tea/soda to finish the day. Now, I have been having 1-2 cups of tea daily, but the difference is I have been adding zero sugar and have had it more or less for reasons other than energy. I did start the week with a sugar hangover from all the holiday treats and candies we had left, but I ate too much that the thought of eating another piece of chocolate right now makes my stomach churn. So that will probably help keep the sweets away for a while and reach my goals, the last time I had soda I wasn’t really enjoying the taste so hopefully I can curb those cravings soon.