Yesterday we talked about the foods to avoid while on a 30 day elimination diet. Today’s post is all about different symptoms to monitor while on the diet.
Food intolerances are funny things, and the effects of consuming something you don’t tolerate can be felt anywhere in your body. You may be surprised to find that something you never thought was related to what you put on your plate may actually start to clear up while on the elimination diet. Some symptoms that can be tied to food intolerances and excessive sugar intake include:
Neurological: Fatigue, lethargy, feeling drained, poor memory, insomnia, headaches, migraines, anxiety, irritability, feeling jittery, inability to concentrate, frequent mood swings, postural hypotension (feeling dizzy when you stand up)
Musculoskeletal: Muscle aches, muscle weakness, pain and/or swelling in your joints
Gastrointestinal: abdominal pain, bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea, belching, rash or blisters in mouth, tingling or itching in mouth
Skin: rashes, itching, eczema, rosacea
Sinuses/Allergies: sinus congestion and pressure, runny nose, watery eyes, increasing seasonal allergies, increasing frequency/severity of asthma attacks
As you can see, this is a pretty extensive list. The reason is that food intolerances activate our immune system. Because our immune cells travel throughout the entire body, the effects of chronic immune activation and silent inflammation can be felt anywhere. It seems to be different from person to person, and no one is really quite sure why. You may have food intolerances without a single gastrointestinal symptom, but suffer from horrible migraines. Now, this isn’t to say that if you have any of these symptoms its because you have a food intolerance, but its certainly something worth exploring.
Before you start the diet, I highly recommend you jot down some notes about how you feel on a day to day basis. Include recurring symptoms, especially any from the list above. You may also find it helpful to keep a food journal, jotting down what you ate during the day and how you felt. As you progress through the diet, you can look back at your original notes and see what things may have cleared up, what is still ongoing, and if any symptoms seem to be connected to something you’re still eating. These are valuable insights, and you don’t want to miss out on them!
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