My newbie food plan started off on a whim. It wasn’t a plan so much as it was a knee-jerk reaction. I’d had it. I was annoyed with my fibromyalgia doctor and thought, “I’ll show him!” Boy howdy did I. How was I to know that the results would be shocking?
I created my own newbie fibromyalgia diet plan (although at the time I had no idea that’s what I was doing). More importantly, I created a “take charge of my own life” plan. That’s where it started.
In Fibro Diet Part 1 of this article, I shared how this whole thing started. I shared why I was annoyed with my doctor (downright ticked off, actually) and how I took action that changed my life. If you haven’t already, check out Part 1 here to catch up.
In this article, I’ll share the nitty gritty of my original newbie plan. Like I said earlier, it wasn’t thought out. It wasn’t even very creative. It’s actually painfully simple, but that was my thinking process at the time. I wanted to make a change, so I did. And, I’m oh-so-grateful.
Here’s what I ate.
My Fibro Diet – Newbie Plan
I ate salads including chicken and eggs here or there. I experimented with new veggies. I drank water. I kept it simple.
I had no idea at the time that I was going wheat/gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free, grain-free, bean-free, legume-free, caffeine-free, processed foods-free, artificial sweetener-free, low carb, etc. I just wanted to see a drastic change in my cholesterol. I believed that I could lower my cholesterol yet still experience pain. I believed they were completely unrelated.
I was sort of right – but mostly almost all wrong.
The basis of my entire wellness journey was on old-fashioned stubbornness. It wasn’t based in some grandiose plan to heal, get well, and leave fibromyalgia behind me. I wanted to prove one tiny point, and in doing so … completely transformed my world.
I had no understanding of the vital connection between food and whole body inflammation. I didn’t understand the role that processed foods, chemicals, and the Standard American Diet (S.A.D.) has on the development of fibromyalgia and autoimmune conditions.
Shocking Changes in My Fibro Body
All I knew is that when I changed what I ate, I began to see results almost right away. The first thing I noticed is that the painful choking feeling I had at night disappeared. For months, I’d feared choking in my sleep — swallowing felt contracted and difficult. This also seemed connected to my horrific chest pain that radiated up through my collarbone and across my back. This symptom noticeably diminished and then disappeared within ten days or so. Within a few weeks, I experienced a drastic improvement in the stiff and painful joints in my hands. No doubt about it, I was thinking more clearly as well.
There was no question –
what I was eating made a difference.
This Natural Reaction Surprised Me
Within a few months, I began to feel so good that exercise became a natural progression. I started a fitness routine at home and eventually joined a gym.
Did all my symptoms disappear? No. It took time for the majority of my pain to go away, but I’m glad to share that (barring temporary injuries) I live with about 5% -10% of the pain that I once had. I cleared up the vast majority of my symptoms, but things are not perfect. Fibromyalgia is always there waiting to let me know if I’m on track with my nutrition and stress management plans.
Of course, it’s so much easier now to look back and put together the puzzle pieces. The fibromyalgia body is hyper-sensitive.
That’s not news to you, is it?
We’re super-sensitive to foods, sounds, smells, lights, touch, stress, and more. When I removed the dietary ingredients that triggered my over-reactive response, my body was allowed to calm down and heal.
Can You Name the Fibro Diet
Just like I had no name for my diagnosis, I also didn’t have a name for the food plan that I followed. Of course, it wasn’t much of a plan, but the labels to identify my health challenge and my diet came later.
You’ll notice that I prefer other terms such as plan, protocol, approach, program, etc. rather than diet. Diet implies a temporary circumstance – something rigid, unbending, and short-term. A healthy food plan doesn’t relate to any of those characteristics. The nutritional approach that I follow has changed, morphed, and expanded over the past dozen years or so, yet the fundamentals have stayed the same.
If you’d like to read more about the fundamentals of what a healing fibromyalgia diet can look like, review this article – “The Fibromyalgia Diet: HELP! I Don’t Know What to Eat.” In it, you’ll find details about problematic foods linked to food sensitivities and inflammation.
In Part 3 of this series, we’ll dig into the specific diet that I use most frequently now. I’ll share what it is, what it is not, and how to find ways to adapt what you learn into your own eating plan.
Get ready — next week, we’re gonna dive in!