A Plant-Based Diet for Fuel, Energy and Less Pain
After I posted it, I also thought about how different my diet is now from what it used to be and I know that my food choices play into my ongoing healing as well.
During the first few weeks post-accident, as I lay in the California hospital, food did not appeal to me. With all the meds (pain, antibiotic and more) in my system, my stomach rebelled at the thought of anything being added to it.
Most days, half of what I did manage to eat ended up in the pink-kidney shaped upchuck bowl. The combination of the accident and me losing 20 lbs in a few weeks gives a whole new meaning to the term “crash diet”.
The caring hospital dietitian visited my room a few times a week because I kept sending my tray back too full (or Jerry would eat it, but I’d have to tell them what I did or didn’t eat).
She said she would make me anything I’m hungry for (wonder if she could come live with me now) Trouble is, I wasn’t hungry for anything. But she kept trying, making various things she or I thought I might be able to eat.
Soup is comfort food for me, so she made some of that (homemade!). I liked it and so did my stomach. So soup it was… almost every meal for a few weeks.
And I’ve never forgotten the advice she gave me…
I didn’t make drastic changes to my diet right away, but slowly I tried to retrain my wicked sweet tooth and make wiser choices. With time, I began noticing how food either gave me fuel (energy) or it didn’t. So over the past few years, I’ve made major changes.
The biggest change has been switching to a plant-based diet.
First I read about the benefits of a plant-based diet on No Meat Athlete for a few months. Then on January 1, 2010, I decided to try it for one month to see how I feel. I felt so good that I stuck with it. For a few months, I ate fish occasionally, but I soon quit that.
It’s hard to describe exactly what I mean by “felt so good” because it’s not like I never get tired or that all my pain (and wrinkles) disappeared, but I feel better overall.
While I feel like my food choices helped my pain decrease, there’s no way I can provide proof, but I do know that my diet has given me more energy, which helps me work out more, which I know helped my pain decrease!
Now I aim to eat well as much as possible. It probably ends up being about 80% of the time. The other 20% of the time I eat food I want to (chips, cupcakes, etc) but might not provide fuel. And I’m okay with that.
I’m aiming for healthy, not perfection.
I don’t preach about the benefits of a plant-based diet, because it is a big change and each person has to make the choice for themselves. But if you are interested in what a plant based diet is like and the benefits of it… I have the perfect thing for you to read.
Leo from zenhabits, wrote a great post covering everything you need to know,
A Guide to Eating a Plant-Based Diet.
Go, read it and learn… even if you can’t imagine why you would or should only eat plant-based foods, you might be surprised what you find out.
Have you noticed how certain foods make you feel better than others?
I don’t preach about my diet, but if you ask, I will tell/share all… any questions about my plant-based diet?