I tried the paleo diet, and let me tell you, it’s no cake walk especially when you don’t eat red meat (not recommended for endo) or pork. But it was probably the best I felt.
For those brave souls really wanting to commit, the Autoimmune Protocol takes the Paleo diet to the extreme. It proved too challenging for me but many swear by it. It can be worth trying.
After exploring these and other diets (you could look up mediterranean as well) I ultimately designed a diet I felt suited me best. This is based on the foods I found most aggravating and my research on foods and triggers for endometriosis. This is very much in line with most Endo Diets.
NO Dairy/Eggs NO Wheat/Gluten
NO Caffeine NO Alcohol
NO Red Meat NO Processed Sugar
Now admittedly this can be hard to maintain 100% of the time, but consistency is incredibly important. Let’s look at each one closer.
I have known I had a dairy sensitivity my whole life. I thought I was lactose intolerant, only learning recently it was an actual allergy that had been contributing to many of my other issues including nighttime congestion. With so many other options on the market replacing MILK is no big deal, but it can be more challenging when it comes to eating out, baked goods, and steering clear of cheese. Who doesn’t love a good cheese after all?
Instead of grabbing a quart of cows milk, instead replace with my favorite, ALMOND MILK! There are also plenty of other options out there including COCONUT, RICE, HEMP, and SOY (though I wouldn’t necessarily recommend soy for those with endo or ttc as it’s estrogenic). My personal favorite brand is Calafia and they have various flavors. I opt for the unsweetened as we’re avoiding sugar!
Okay, so this is heartbreaking for me because I really do love me some cheese. But there are better and better alternatives coming to the market everyday. My personal favs are generally nut cheeses. Try Treeline brand. They have delicious spread style cheeses as well as more of an artisanal aged style option. Both are very good depending on what you’re in the mood for. Even dairy lovers can enjoy. When it comes to Parmesan I opt for Follow Your Heart brand, but it’s really trial and error for each need.
Breakfast seems to center around eggs as the core of your meal. Not only that, but so many baked goods contain eggs making easy grab options more difficult. I will admit, I’m not always the best at avoiding egg. If it’s low on the ingredient list, I’ll let it slide and generally don’t have a problem, but you need to find your own limits through trial and error which isn’t always fun. I liked this substitution infographic from NoMeatAthlete to give you some ideas. Luckily, a lot of places are now offering vegan baked goods. Not so great, they’re very rarely vegan AND gluten free!
please be patient with me as I continue to work on this as time allows… more coming soon!
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My Experience With Endo Diet
It still can’t be said for certain if I have Endometriosis, a disease where the lining of the uterus grows outside the uterus building over time causing scaring, OR if I have IBS. Docs flip flopped on what they thought was going on with me for years. Proteins were found in my uterine biopsy that were indicative of endo but I haven’t had a laparoscopy to officially confirm it. That being said, either which way, diet and some simple lifestyle changes have had a significant impact on my health and wellbeing.
I lived in pain for years, and I’m really not meaning to preach here, but when I finally committed to the changes I saw real tangible results. So I feel it is important to share my experiences to hopefully help others struggling with their own chronic illness.
You may not be ready to hear what I am about to say, but if you haven’t cut out wheat and dairy. That’s step one. I know. It sucks. You “can’t live without it”… but actually… you can! And you’ll live a much happier, fuller life.
Wheat and dairy are both inflammatory. And generally speaking cause the pain to be much worse. If you can live in pain then by all means, go ahead and keep eating. But as someone who was on prescription painkillers to get by and battling chronic fatigue, I can tell you it’s not worth it. Quality of life is far more valuable than your cravings. Does it suck? Yes! Will you have moments of weakness? Absolutely! But unfortunately this isn’t a case of 80-20 rule. If you aren’t sticking to it 100% you’re really not going to see proper results… and you’re just torturing yourself for nothing basically. So commit… really commit.
…to be continued.