The Benefits of the Diet to Live For

What is different for me since giving up grains, eating super-low-carb and losing 25 pounds:

It’s easier to move. This includes getting in and out of small cars, which in the past was a herculean effort on my part. I had to shift my legs out of the vehicle, then gather my strength to stand up. I realized the other day that I didn’t need the ‘oomph’ to get out of my friend’s Mustang. I just stood up!

It’s easier to get in and out of the bathtub. My knee is still sore from falling on it a few months ago, but I now have the energy to get up faster. There’s more room in the tub, too. I used to hate apartment tubs, because they are so small. Now, while they are pretty small, they don’t seem quite so tiny. (I still dream of a deep claw-foot tub to soak in.)

More energy! Walking across parking lots and campus is no big deal (except for the triple digit temps, of course).

It’s easier to choose healthier foods. Vegetables in butter now taste like ambrosia. I eat less. Rarely do I eat to feeling overstuffed, and when I do, I’m miserable. Yet when I don’t stuff myself, I no longer feel deprived. It’s much easier to not eat sugary junk food when I have the munchies. Yes, I still want something to munch on, but now I choose nuts, or the ‘pumpkin cheesecake’ (thanks, Sheila!) I fixed last night (⅓ cup cream cheese, ½ cup canned pumpkin, 1 packet Splenda, a little cinnamon – nuked for about 40 seconds and then stirred together and eaten warm).

Attitude shift. When I was heavier, I hated those perky people who were skinny and had all that energy. I wanted to scream at them, because I just couldn’t understand how they did it. I was practically immobile. Now that I’m lighter, I ‘get it.’ You just feel better, it’s easier to move, and you feel so much lighter. Your steps are lighter, too.

No caffeine. This isn’t a direct benefit of the diet, but one I’ve just discovered: I feel better when I don’t ingest caffeine. Drinking caffeinated coffee or tea, I could feel the rush of adrenaline/cortisol through my body and it didn’t feel good. I felt jittery and over-energized. In Ireland, when I was having 3 shots of full-caffeine espresso, I would feel like I was in hyper-drive and could keep working long past my usual limit (not necessarily a good thing for people with exhausted adrenals). When I didn’t drink it, I couldn’t move. I was lethargic and dragging and couldn’t understand why. Now that I’ve given up most of it, I just enjoy my cup of decaf coffee with cream. In fact, I think it’s as much the cream I’m enjoying as the taste of the coffee. I also don’t need the coffee to wake up in the mornings anymore. If I’m really out of it from either not getting enough sleep, or waking up during a sleep cycle, a shower pulls me out of the stupor.

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