I am never returning to the way I used to eat. It’s like saying, “I think I’ll eat rat poisoning please, it feels great when I do.”
That’s what the foods I have eliminated have been doing to my body apparently. Poisoning me. So why would I ever go back? I’ve written several blogs about my personal journey with this lifestyle change:
The Skinny On The Virgin Diet
The Skinny On The Virgin Diet Part II
The Skinny On the Virgin Diet Part III
The Skinny On the Virgin Diet Part IV
The Skinny On The Virgin Diet Part V
To recap: J.J. Virgin has developed a diet that has changed my life and the lives of many others for the better. Essentially, she claims there are foods that many people simply can’t tolerate. Foods the world tells us are “good” for us. Intolerance is not exactly an allergic reaction, our bodies react more slowly and not necessarily immediately when we ingest the seven foods she believes are the culprits of many health problems we experience. In Virgin’s book, she describes symptoms that when I read them was like reading a list of the things I had been complaining about for decades. When I eliminated the HiFi foods as Virgin calls it, the change in me was miraculous.
The High FI foods are:
Sugar – all kinds of sugar including artificial sweeteners
Within 48 hours of totally eliminating these foods I began to see the difference in my skin and feel the difference in my body. Brain fog, stomach ailments that ranged from gas and bloating to other more severe digestive problems, body aches and pains all began to almost immediately dissipate. Within the week all my severe allergy symptoms diminished to almost zero. And that is a short list of the absolutely remarkable results of starting this diet. I have never looked back since.
Today I wish to share some tips and tricks I have found while learning to live with this big change in my life remembering, I am no expert. I am incapable of offering medical advice and I always encourage people to read all labels no matter what I or anyone recommend. So these are my own personal suggestions, by no means expert advice.
Read all of the label. Don’t rely on just the “ingredients” portion of any label. Read the entire label. Example: I was taking a vitamin supplement. I read the ingredients listed. There were no forbidden ingredients listed. I began taking the suggested portion on the label every morning with breakfast. Almost immediately I began to have stomach problems. I couldn’t figure out what it was that I might be eating. I was down to water, boiled organic chicken breast, coconut milk, tea, blueberries and bananas to get me through the day. Still, every evening I would gradually feel like someone had set my gut on fire.
Finally it struck me to look at the supplement I had recently begun to take and really read the entire label. Sure enough – not listed in the actual ingredients, but at the very bottom of the label in the tiniest print, there was a note that the capsule itself was made of soy. Bingo! I stopped taking that supplement and my stomach went back to feeling great once again.
If you love chocolate I found a dark chocolate that doesn’t have any sugar in it. Yeah, you heard me – and to me it is dee-licious. Click on the Amazon link below if you're interested in trying them.
Lucienne's Sugar Free Chocolate Bars
You can use fresh lemon on more things than you think you can. I thought that occasionally squeezing a fresh lemon on chicken or of course fish was what I could use lemon for. I have found so many uses for it. I squeeze it on Lamb, I add it to my homemade yogurt and even on salad when I make my own salad dressing as bottled dressings have too many ingredients Virgin Diet people simply can not have in any phase.
One wonderful way to add a low/no calorie what I call “extender” to my Olive Oil and Wine Vinegar salad dressing.
In a dressing shaker or merely a bowl mix two parts wine vinegar to two parts oil. Sometimes I crush garlic and throw it in there for more taste and use toss on some pepper according to your palate. If you have fresh parsley use that too. Shake or stir.
When you pour over your salad rather than use more dressing (in the old days every single leaf had to be coated with dressing for me), squeeze a half fresh lemon on top of your salad. Add salt, then take a big spoon and fork and toss that serving until all is coated. Don’t skimp on the tossing. That’s the trick. If you feel you don’t have enough dressing on your salad, add more freshly squeezed lemon. You really won’t taste the lemon. It’ll just add a slight tangy taste and give you the feeling that you’ve used a lot more dressing than you did and it will really taste great.
Vegan cheese. I know…I know. I never in my wildest dreams thought for even one second that I would buy anything with “Vegan” on it no less eat it. I’m also not a huge cheese eater believe it or not – however dairy once reintroduced was a total no=go for me, and in my quest for recipes I can eat, tuna casserole led to my discovery of Daiya brand vegan cheese (see photo).
I am here to tell you, with at least the two different flavors I have tried, their vegan alternative to dairy cheese tastes just like cheese to me and melts when cooked.
Here’s a super simple recipe:
(This should make two portions)
1 can tuna in olive oil.
1 cup Daiya Vegan cheese
Open the can, drain. Put the tuna into a microwave small bowl or dish. Pour Daiya Vegan cheese on top (the flavor of your choosing)
Microwave until the cheese is melted. Cook in 30 second or 15 second intervals.
In literally 30 – 45 seconds (according to the strength of your microwave) you’ve got lunch with a tasty cheesy taste.
Use this non-dairy cheese with gluten free pasta to make mac and cheese using unsweetened Almond milk to mix. It’s a new discovery for me and one that is very filling.
Another discovery - I had really no idea what “hearts of palm” were and had never tasted them in my life. I am prone these days, to try exotic things as long as it meets The Virgin Diet criteria (I have chosen to remain indefinitely, in phase 1 of this diet). So I bought a can of hearts of palm, reading the ingredients carefully of course and have discovered a new very low calorie delicious food. The brand pictured has only water, salt and hearts of palm as ingredients sold at our local Michigan chain Kroger.
I’m on quite the journey here, and hope that sharing my progress and being honest about some minor set-backs, I have in some way helped others. I learn something new all the time and have discovered even after eliminating what I believed to be all the foods I loved, I didn’t really love them as much as I thought I did. Why would I trade energy, vitality, and getting my life back after decades of health problems for foods that are like poison to me?
And that’s my piece for today.
Please note, if you have any questions or even corrections especially about ingredients, I am forever having to check and recheck - please feel free to contact me or leave your comment here. I am always happy to hear from you.