Three years ago I was teaching teenagers in a busy department and was extremely stressed out. My body was trying to communicate with me, but I didn’t read the signs. I was constantly sick, felt like I was running empty, couldn’t handle lots of noise, had poor memory, had severe abdominal bloating, referred pain in my wrists, back sensitivity and exhaustion. Things had to change.
In February 2011 I landed on Sydney’s Northern Beaches feeling overwhelmed but much less stressed! The Aussie way of life really challenged the way I thought about food, diet and lifestyle in general. Although I had been on a wheat free and mostly dairy free diet for years, I realised that it did not make my eating healthy by any stretch and I was addicted to diet coke, carbs and sugar….uh oh.
I started by taking advantage of the outdoor lifestyle and swam in the rock pools and walked the beaches every evening after my temp job. My weight improved and I gave my size 16 jeans to the guy we lived with to use as rags to polish his motorbike! I was determined not to go back.
Exercise was my main focus for a while, but living with a healthy Aussie family made me realise just how many carbs I was eating. I did my research and discovered that one baked potato converts to the same molecular structure as a tablespoon of sugar in my system…..hmmmm. And here was me thinking I didn’t have a sweet tooth!
I will never be a no carb girl, but the aim is for once a day and less in the evening. This was hard to break an English habit of a lifetime. But I started connecting that when I’d had a day lighter on carbs, I felt lighter the next day.
This was my first small change. Simply observing how food made me feel the next day was an encouragement to try to be healthy again. Maybe this could be your small change too? How do you feel after eating certain foods? We are all different, but the first step in my journey was listening to my body.
What’s your body saying to you?