My gut told me to change the way I eat...

...And I'm so glad I listened to it.  Ever since I was a little girl, cow milk would make me puke, like literally just drinking a plain glass of dairy milk.  It was sad, since my parents were trying to shove it down my throat so I would grow taller. HA HA HA.  I'm joking, but growing up drinking milk was so highly promoted to help a kid grow.  After all, milk does a body good would say.  The only way I could drink it was to eat cereal with it.  That is when the cinnamon toast crunch and honey bunches of oats came in.  OOHHH did I love that stuff.  I literally would keep piling on the cereal until the milk was all soaked up and devoured.  Over the years, I had grown stomach issues that made me uncomfortable and not only was my gut unhappy but also my face was breaking out.  Highschool was not fun in that aspect of my life.  I became self conscious trying everything I could except accutane to cure my zits.  When I went to college, I stopped eating a Korean based diet since I wasn't living at home {My mom and I ate 95% of the time Korean food) and then saw an even bigger shift in my gut health.  

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My bloat was uncontrollable.  I was eating pizza, eating more cereal, having those late night snacks after going out and eating so much candy.  I had issues being regular.  Then about my junior year when I started to add more fiber into my diet, such as eating cereals with fiber in it, adding things like metamucil.  It started to help but metamucil was not my favorite.  My gut could not handle all this added fiber and I became even more bloated.  I wondered, why I couldn't just get fiber from my food rather than things like metamucil.  I wasn't as knowledgable about food and how our gut works.   

After I graduated from college I began to do a little bit more research into understanding how my gut functioned aka what made it tick.  I began to reduce the amount of lactose in my diet.  Such as cheese -- oh how I loved that stuff.  I stop drinking cow's milk and became a solid soy milk and almond milk drinker.  I saw a difference in my gut health.  I knew I was lactose intolerant but this confirmed it.  Asians are known to not have the enzyme in their gut to be able to properly digest products with lactose in them.  I guess I got that gene from my mom.   But I was still getting major cramps.  I was still not feeling my best.  It is said that your gut is like your second brain. 

Did you know that about 95% of your serotonin is made in your gut and where most diseases start, and where your immune systems originates from?  Things in my life were causing me stress.  Something that is a constant thing I manage.  Besides reducing my dairy intake, I also started to reduce traditional carbs like pasta and bread from my diet and try to choose gluten free options.  At first it was a matter of a good way to reduce the calories in my diet.  Later I realized the importance of doing that.  I’ll get back to this later.  I realized that eating and drinking certain items, like bread, beer, candies with high sugar content, apples would cause my stomach to either be bloated, constipated or upset.  At this point I was doing alright with my gut.  

Fast forward to a few years ago, I was told that eating cheeses that had been aged for a long time may be more tolerable for people who are lactose intolerant because the lactose is broken down.  So I tried it.  I would try anything to be able to eat real cheese again.  Lactose pills don’t help me.  I thought it went ok.  I still had my stomach problems, so I knew that I wasn’t able to digest the cheeses regardless of how aged it had been. 

Do you notice that some of your eating habits change with you date someone?  Well, that is what happened.  I begin to be a little bit more relaxed with what I ate.  And boy that really did effect me.  My gut wasn’t at its worst but it wasn’t at its best.  I was making food a priority to my gut health rather than the other way around.  The food at restaurants were just way too good to say no to LOL.

Knowledge is the best medicine sometimes….

When I started my Institute of integrative nutrition classes in July 2017, I began to learn so much.  About how important our gut is to our over all health.  That not only is listening to our gut important, it is key to living a happier lifestyle.  I also learned a lot about the different foods we eat, how it effects our gut, and how food is made.  Did you know there is a hypothesis out there that if you were a c-section baby, that you would have more gut issues than others who were brought into this world via a vaginal birth?  Now-a-days, some doctors, for C-section births, will take a swab of the mothers’ vagina, then take that same swab and swab the baby’s mouth.  There are so many bacterias that are transferred from the vagina to the baby during the vaginal birth that help to form the baby’s gut.

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I also saw so many people’s comment about their own gut health, what they’ve done to help them feel better.  I started to learn more about elimination diets but knew I wasn’t really interested in something like that.  I knew it would be hard and I wanted to do something else.  I heard of pinnertest, it is a blood IgG test.  An immunoglobulin test like the IgG test, measures the level of certain immunoglobulins, or antibodies, in the blood.  I was so fascinated by this and whether it could tell you what your intolerances are.  This would be glorious to do and would help me so much.  I looked into it and it was over $400.  I asked my friend who is a GI physician’s assistant and she didn’t understand why it would cost this much.  Unfortunately the medical scientific world doesn’t support this type of testing, as there isn’t much evidence around the accuracy of tests like these.  This is the case because depending on what you eat at the time of the test, can cause certain foods to come up as an intolerances when may be there are other food items as well.  But since you did not eat that particular food group, it would not come up.  

So back in August of 2017, I decide to take things in my own hands.  I saw a natural pathetic doctor to get the IgG test done to test for my intolerances.  It was much more affordable to buy ($125 vs the pinnertest at $400).  A simple drop of blood (I hate needle pricks so this was not so much fun) is all they needed.  The test was sent off to the lab and then I waited for the results.  

When I went back for a follow up visit, my natural pathetic doctor said there were clear signs of what was causing me issues.  You know the crazy, part?  Almost all of the things I suspected, dairy, gluten, almonds, came back as intolerances.  Alarmingly, so.  Here are the things that came back as a clear sign that I was intolerant to them. 1. Dairy, 2. Eggs (I was deadly saddened about this), 3. Gluten 4. Pineapple (I was completely shocked about this) 5. Almonds.  My natural path said I could either do an elimination diet where I eliminate only one of the items at a time or eliminate them all at once.  I decided to eliminate all of these items.  Why not, right?.  I have to say the elimination diet wasn’t easy but it was an eye opener.  It certainly helped to reduce the massive inflammation in my gut, and helped me to maintain my weight.   The IgG test is something I highly recommend to anyone who has issues and does not know what is causing them.  

To learn more about my elimination diet click here