{How This Blog Became Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Mostly Vegan} Disclaimers and the Diet Itself

by Valerie on July 12, 2009 · 12 comments

Update June 2010 on How This Blog Became Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Mostly Vegan – I had originally named this series the Detox Diet Diaries, but my experience with these changes in my diet, while incredibly positive, has made me decide I really do not like the concept of  a detox diet.   It is ironic in that the diet my naturopath put me on was incredibly helpful, and a year later, it has become clear I have non-Celiac gluten intolerance, as well as a strong dairy intolerance.  I continue to avoid all dairy and gluten, as well as other problematic foods such as corn, but have grown to really dislike the concept of “detox” – the term promotes the concept of a quick fix, which is just nonsensical.  I firmly believe that the vast improvements in my heath are based on the long-term changes I made, and want my posts on the experience to convey this.    
Yesterday I posted the background on the health reasons behind my decision to do a detox diet, under doctor’s supervision. Today, I wanted to talk a little bit about the diet itself and what it entails.

But before we get to that, I am going to post this disclaimer – and you will see it at the end of every post in this series:

Disclaimer: I am just a regular person posting about my experience doing a detox diet for health reasons and, ultimately, to isolate food allergies that may be the underlying cause of said health problems. I am not a medical professional or nutritionist. Please do not use information from these posts to do your own detox diet. Rather, seek advice from a doctor, naturopath or nutritionist to determine what the correct course of action for your health is.
With that out of the way, let’s talk about the detox diet itself. I started the detox diet back at the end of May, so it’s been over 6 weeks now. Like I said yesterday, it’s all real food. And yes, this detox diet is really long (several months ultimately)because of my specific health issues – after the first month, though, I was able to add certain food groups back in a limited fashion (like meat). My understanding is that most detox diets are about 2-3 weeks, but I don’t actually know because my own experience is specific to my health.

As for the diet – the goal is to remove all foods that may be potentially causing me various problems. Now remember, I have always been big on eating everything in moderation (good old 80/20), so eliminating certain food groups completely seemed extreme. But I told myself many of these things would likely eventually be back in my diet at the 20 percent level.

And honestly, I had been sick and/or fatigued for so long, it seemed worth a shot.

So, here are the eliminated foods when I began this detox diet:

*no dairy
*no caffeine – so no coffee, no black tea and no green tea (I was especially upset about the last one)
*no wheat
*no meat
*no corn
*no refined sugar (agave nectar and stevia are allowed)
*no artificial colorings, flavorings and sweeteners
*no seafood
*no alcohol
*no fried foods

Because of my specific health issues, there were a couple more very specific eliminated foods, including cabbage and because I had recently had bad reactions to orange juice, I chose to eliminate that.

On soy – some of my older health issues from a couple of years ago could have some link with soy consumption, so with my doctor’s support I don’t eat a lot of soy (i.e. I will eat wheat-free soy sauce, but not huge amounts of tofu or edamame).

And yes, after about a month, I did get to add a limited amount of meat back in.

As for what I could eat, it boiled down to the following:

1. fruits
2. vegetables, with a couple of exceptions
3. whole grains like brown rice, quinoa, millet, amaranth, and buckwheat
4. legumes
5. wild-caught fish
6. nuts and seeds

As you can see it’s a rather large number of food groups and subgroups.

Next weekend I will start posting more about how the first few days of the detox went and some initial thoughts. As I noted, I started this detox diet over 6 weeks ago, but I took a fair amount of notes I can draw from to give more of a sense of those first few days.

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General Disclosures & Disclaimers

{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ivy July 13, 2009 at 10:35 am

You did not have much to eat, did you? What about the rest of your family, did you have to cook separately for them or did they support you? How are you feeling now after six weeks?


2 Sarah July 13, 2009 at 12:55 pm

Thanks for sharing! I know we discussed this a bit before. I've considered a detox for some time now, but I don't think I'm at a place where I can do, considering other events in my life, without going crazy. Perhaps in a few months. It is nice to get a real life perspective, b/c sometimes just reading or hearing about detox diets from professionals seems a bit sterile.


3 Rachel July 13, 2009 at 1:09 pm

I can't wait to follow you along on your journey!

I also left you an award at my blog! :)


4 The Curator July 13, 2009 at 2:53 pm

This is really interesting. I'll be waiting to see how it continues working for you. :)


5 Pink Heels July 13, 2009 at 3:01 pm

I haven't read the entirety of your post yet because I can't stop laughing. You are such an ATTORNEY (in a good way)!!! I LOVE your little disclaimer. You are adorable~


6 Kiki July 13, 2009 at 3:43 pm

This is fascinating, it raises so many questions for me! Such as:

Did your doc say anything about buying "regular" produce versus organic this detox?

What about cookbooks – did you just make recipes up as you went along, or have you been using a few cookbooks in particular?

What about spices? Were you told to give up irritating spices like hot pepper and mustard? Or encouraged to eat more "anti-inflammatory" spices like turmeric?

Expect more questions to come!


7 City Girl July 13, 2009 at 3:53 pm

Thank you so much for all your support and wonderful questions.

Ivy and Kiki – I am going to answer your questions briefly by commeting on your blogs, but I am actually going to save longer answers for a blog post all of its own this coming weekend. I hope that's ok.

Sarah – I was lucky in that these last few months, while busy in that I was working long hours, were not full of travel, business trips etc. I would have had to make it work even if it had been otherwise, but I do think picking a less insane time in your life to do this helps the success.

Rachel & The Curator – you know, overall I have a lot more energy than before, but this is still an ongoing process of several months, so the journey is ongoing even though I waited a couple of months to start blogging about it.

Pink Heels – I am going to take that as compliment :)


8 Kiki July 13, 2009 at 3:55 pm

Don't worry about commenting on mine with your answer if you've got longer answers coming in future blog posts. You've got enough writing to do right now! I'll be patient :-)


9 Chelsa Bea July 13, 2009 at 8:52 pm

I did a similar detox three years ago when I was having serious migraines and they didn't know the cause. I ended up having to give up coffee completely. I can still drink tea though, which is good. I can't tell you how much better I feel now that I have figured out what was causing me the headaches. Good luck with everything and hopefully you have good results like I did!


10 Annie July 14, 2009 at 12:51 am

Wow sounds like a serious undertaking!
Years ago I tried a very limited version of a detox. My own version actually, because I had developed an allergy (my tongue would swell for no apparent reason). It took sometime but I eventually found the culprit- sodium laural sulfate found in toothpaste and certain additives in foods.
I hope you have success. I will definitely keep posted for more details.


11 Carolyn July 14, 2009 at 2:57 am

Wow that sounds… sooo difficult. I can't wait to hear about how it felt to begin and how it's been going since!


12 Elizabeth July 14, 2009 at 4:37 am

This is all so fascinating. I do such a good job of keeping up with yoga, you'd think I'd do better about what I put in my body.

I will definitely be checking in on the weekends to see how it's going :)



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