I no longer look at food bloggers the same way I did two years ago, nor any bloggers for that matter, they are flawed, all of them. Almost a decade ago discovery of my severe food intolerances changed my life, and health. For nearly two years I experienced the healthiest, most loyal body I had known. But over time I seemed to have to work harder to try to maintain those same benefits that I had so dramatically experienced in my post-gluten/dairy life. And so, down the rabbit hole I went.
Eventually, I settled on my own version of paleo before anyone knew what paleo was. But it wasn’t paleo, I ate beans, bean flours, pretty much anything that didn’t have unhealthy carbs. Though even sweet potatoes I largely avoided. And my health was good. My weight was always just where I wanted it, I worked hard at avoiding certain foods, and I was active in my lifestyle, enjoying several dog walks a day. But my health was still a carrot dangling in the distance, a carrot I had sampled–the elusive perfect health. And so for years I, and several natural healthcare practitioners, convinced me that I had candida, or a parasite, or several undiagnosed food sensitivities. And so eventually, as the paleo trend grew, my affinity toward a stricter, more educated version of it did as well.
I abandoned my beans, and incorporated honey, maple syrup, and fat, lots and lots of fat. But as time wore on, and so did life’s stresses, I felt no worthy improvements. Why wasn’t it working? All of these paleo bloggers, authors, figures of fitness inspiration were telling me just what to do and eat, and I was listening. And then, the bubble burst.
I had begun noticing trends in the paleo world, like that the women were never actually thinner than me, nor usually fitter for that matter. And even the men admitted to struggling towards a healthy relationship with food. As far as I could understand, we all were searching for this elusive promise that deprivation leads to “optimal health.” And for the many of us with food intolerances, in a lot of ways we had found just that. But we were not often discovering those exact triggers, but instead adopting rigid systems of dietary control. After all, with intolerances, a firm avoidance of gluten and dairy had changed my life incredibly. So surely it seemed that an increase in said rigidity and control in most areas of my diet would also promise such rainbows. Right?
The thing is, I read every healthy eating article I come across, always searching for Pandora’s Box. And seemingly every week I am trying out a new dietary perspecive (alkaline, ayurveda, LowFodmap, paleo, etc.), and while I don’t have any finite answers beyond my gluten and dairy intolerances, I do know that a) I do NOT have Candida b) though not my ideal, I am thinner than most health blogging “experts” c) my tongue actually looks even better when I do eat carbs (i.e. NOT Candida) and d) my health is actually by all scales but my own, amazing! Sure, I want perfection, especially on a digestive level. And I will keep trying different diets, yoga moves, and stress management techniques–because let’s face it, we live in a stressful world.
But what I am saying is that despite any experts, including myself, who have ever written for Gluten Free Fox, or any food blog, we really all are just doing our best.