Wednesday, March 16, 2011

revisiting the Maker's Diet

A while back, Jeff and I made a decision.

Though we've continued to follow a traditional diet in our household, we needed a little something. A sort of jump-start. A re-dedication. An exercise in self-restraint. A dietary cleanse, if you will. So we decided, the two of us, to visit the 40-Day regimen that started us down the path. We resolved do revisit The Maker's Diet.

Some of you may remember that The Maker's Diet is a book by Jordan Rubin. It advocates a traditional diet - that is, eating foods that have been traditionally eaten (for hundreds and thousands of years), prepared in a way that is easily digestible by the human body. It sounds simple enough, and in many ways it is. But in today's climate, it can be a bit of a challenge. I had to learn to seek out recipes for soaking grains, sources for raw cheese and grass-fed beef, and so on. The benefits are well worth it, though!

Getting back to the 40-Day regimen: it's a series of approximately three two-week phases. The first two weeks are the most restricted, the second phase is a little more liberal, and so on. The main goals are to regulate blood sugar levels, balance hormones, and concentrate on foods that are the easiest to digest. For example, in phase 1, milk is not allowed at all, and the only cheese allowed are goat milk cheese and sheep milk cheese. This is because the milk from these animals is more readily digested than cow's milk is, even raw cow's milk.

I won't bore you with all the details, but we're in the middle of the process right now. And I must tell you: I feel terrific! It occurred to me the other afternoon that I love how I feel when I'm doing the Maker's Diet's 40 Days.

To be perfectly honest, I didn't want to do it again. I'd grown very comfortable in my habits of eating pancakes (soaked!) with my boys in the morning, consuming regular (naturally sweetened!) desserts, and enjoying all manner of delicious foods. Healthy, homemade, well-prepared foods, generally, but...somehow I'd developed some bad habits. Too many sweets, for one thing. Stress eating, for another.

So I wasn't very excited about restricting myself, but I agreed to go along for the ride. It would be good to exercise some self-discipline, and besides...I still have 5-10 lbs of pregnancy weight that I'd like to lose. My memory of last time includes losing more weight than I ever imagined, quite effortlessly.

And you know what? It hasn't been as hard as I was expecting. Once again, it was the fruit restrictions that chaffed the most (probably a testament to my affection for sugars - even natural ones). And as I am not a big fan of goat milk cheese, I really missed my raw cheddar and jack. There was one bad afternoon when I wanted to eat all kinds of things that were forbidden. But overall, it's been a great experience.

Granted, the weight has not come slipping off the way it did before. Our dietary changes were not as drastic as they were in 2008 - I suppose that's it. But still, the number on the scale is slowly going down. I feel satisfied. I feel in control of myself. I feel even better (healthier, energy-level, vibrant) than I did before...and that's saying something because I've felt good for a long time.

So here's to the Maker's Diet, and the 40 Days. I can only hope that the rest of the process will be as fulfilling as the first few weeks have been.

Be well!

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