A component of our new Food As Medicine Program at Green Mountain is food sensitivity testing. We use LEAP (Lifestyle Eating and Performance) MRT (Mediator Release Testing) to assess for food and food-chemical sensitivities. People experience a wide range of symptoms from food sensitivities, the most common of which are headaches, migraines, IBS, diarrhea, and fibromyalgia. It’s so interesting seeing the test results that come back from the lab; we test for sensitivities to 150 different foods and food-chemicals.
Once a Green Mountain participant’s test results arrive, I work with her one-on-one to develop a short term eating plan based on the foods she’s least likely to have a bad reaction to. This initial phase of the eating plan, which typically last for 7 to 10 days, usually includes only 20 to 25 foods. Eating in this way is something that would trigger feelings of deprivation for just about anyone, however I find that, oddly enough, this is not always the case.
Even women that have struggled with feelings of food deprivation in the past are handling this phase well because they realize that making these changes will make them feel better. There is a big difference in electing not to eat something because you want to feel well and someone else telling you not to eat something in order to lose weight. There’s a big difference in making a change because you want to compared to making the same change because someone else tells you that you should.
As an example, if someone told me not to eat cheese because it would raise my weight or my cholesterol levels, I’d have a hard time avoiding it. Cheese is delicious. However, lately I have been avoiding dairy products because I don’t like the idea of where dairy comes from. This may not be a motivator for another person, but because it’s my own personal reason for avoiding dairy, I find it’s easy for me to do so. I don’t miss it and when my husband says “Do you want to go out for pizza?” I’m amazed at how easy it is to say, “No thanks.”
What recent changes have you made FOR YOU that you are surprised by your ability to maintain?