Well kids, the time has finally arrived.
After weeks of removing EVERYTHING I love about food from my diet (no, this is not an exaggeration – I could live off bread and garlic), it is time for the elimination diet to end.
Let the re-entry of deliciousness begin?
First, I needed to create a system to help me determine what foods are difficult, HOW difficult they are (read: how often I can suffer through them), and any specific observations to help going forward.
So I created a rating scale 0-5.
0 = I feel awesome, let’s dance!
5 = OMG IT HURTS MAKE IT STOP
Now that I had a rating system, it was time to begin introducing foods. Naturally, I started with garlic. Until my doctor suggested using the FODMAP diet for my elimination plan, garlic was a culinary staple. I mean, it’s GOOD for you! Garlic is my first love. I tolerated removing it from my meals because I told myself “oh this is silly, there’s no way garlic is actually a problem.”
I started in a way I thought would be safe. Garlic powder added to sautéed vegetables with breakfast. A few hours post breakfast? No complaints (she said while holding her breath in fear). At dinner, I grated a little raw garlic into the salad dressing I made.
See, self? I told you it would be fine.
By the next morning, I had some minor discomfort, but maybe a 1 on the scale. Plus I was being stubborn and didn’t want to admit garlic could potentially be an issue. On day 2, I added sautéed garlic to my veggies at dinner. IT WAS DELICIOUS. My heart was soooooo happy.
By day 3, however, my belly was not. For the next 24 hours, I was super uncomfortable. All my symptoms were back.
So I spent day 3 and 4 eating all the safe foods I have come to appreciate. Symptoms = gone.
Here’s what I learned:
1. Don’t be stubborn. It won’t help. Listen to your body.
2. Garlic is okay (for me) OCCASIONALLY but not every day. And everyone’s body is different. Hopefully your experience will be more pleasurable than mine!
3. It’s totally acceptable to sit on a crowded bus, sobbing quietly about losing access to your favorite food.
Garlic = 2-3 on the scale, depending on how much and in what form.