How did you find out you had a food intolerance?
I took the Carroll Food Intolerance Test several years back with a somewhat skeptical and extremely desperate attitude. The findings from that simple blood test literally changed my life and I now fully believe that many of the health problems that are rampant today, both physical and emotional, are food related. I recommend this test to absolutely everyone, especially those who I see suffering as I was before I learned how to help my body heal itself.
Is it like an allergy?
While it acts like an allergy in many ways, this isn't a true allergy. An allergy is an immune system response, where the body attacks a food it doesn't recognize, whereas an intolerance is a digestive system response, which basically means that the body can't break down certain foods completely. Because they're not digested correctly, that extra stuff builds up and gets released into the bloodstream as toxins. Before I took my intolerances out of my diet completely I could eat them daily and not notice an immediate effect (of course, back then I felt so crappy I wouldn't have noticed anyway) but now that my body has had a chance to clean itself out and I do notice within an hour or two of eating that I've obviously been in something I shouldn't.
So what are you intolerant to?
My main intolerance is potato. Yes, I said potato. Even trace amounts get to me. Easy peasy, right, just lay off those mashed taters at Thanksgiving? Not so much. See, potato is cheap, potato is useful...and it's in everything. No, really, I kid you not. Let me elaborate.
- Most prepared foods contain potato starch or flour in some form, so packaged convenience foods are out.
- B vitamins are cultured on a potato base (niacin, thiamin and riboflavin), and happen to be used to enrich many foods, including most baking flours, pasta products, breakfast cereals and rice.
- Dextrose is a potato sugar derivitive, and is found in most canned foods, bacon, lunchmeat, ham and iodized salt. Iodized salt tastes bad, so they add dextrose to it to make it tasty again. Now the canned goods and bacon and lunchmeat, not such a big deal. Salt? Yes, it's in most everything pre-made. So anything with salt in the label...can't have. Even many uniodized salts have dextrose. The only salt I can have is something called Celtic Sea Salt. I'm not finished, the list is longer still....
- Baking powder contains potato starch and it may not be listed on labels...so no eating pre-made baked goods.
- Tapioca has potato starch as well and is in a fair few items.
- Most yeast is grown on a culture made from potato.
- Other potato dirivatives that I have to look for are modified food starch, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, vegetable broth, MSG or "natural flavorings", and propylene glycol (in soda and ice creams).
- Penicillan type antibiotics are grown on potato cultures.
- Lastly, and this one is actually funny, I cannot use plastic bags (like Ziploc) or plastic wrap, as they contain potato starch byproducts to make them biodegradable.
So what do you eat?
This is the inevitable one that follows the last when people realize just how many foods I can't have. Beside the potato and grain, I also choose to avoid refined sugars and opt for glower glycemic options and am careful about the dairy I take in as well. My diet mostly consists of a variety of fruits and vegetables and lots of lean protien, supplemented with nuts, yogurt, and eggs. A daily menu for me is generally consists of a smoothie in the morning (a scoop of protien powder, a little soymilk, and some fruit), a protien shake or chicken breast and a salad with veggies for lunch, some yogurt with fruit in the afternoon and salmon and vegetables at night.
This means that most every recipe you will find on this site is gluten and dairy free...and still delicious!