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    Do you have questions about celiac disease or the gluten-free diet?

Joni63

Diets For Celiacs (discussion Thread)

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Hello,

I've been researching different diets and am trying to come up with a really good eating plan for life. Not fad, not something that doesn't give me all the nutrients I need, but a real way of eating that is healthy.

I'm hoping others who have tried some of these diets can give their opinions and experiences about them. Thank you!

Some of the things I'm looking for are:

1) Which diet are/were you on and length of time you stayed on it?

2) Were you trying to lose/gain weight?

3) Did you meet you goal?

4) Were you able to maintain your weight?

5) Did you have cravings or miss any foods while on it?

6) Are you still on it?

7) What did you like/dislike about it?

8) Would you recommend it to others?

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Are you only interested in the sort of diets you include in your thread title?

I've followed the McDougall diet since mid-2000 but it is quite different than the diets you list. I plan on staying on it for the rest of my life. I lost weight, reached my goal, and have maintained it. (I'm at a 18.6 BMI.) There is no counting of calories or grams of anything. You just avoid animal products and try mostly for whole plant foods and no added fat. I rarely get cravings. If I'm hungry, I eat something.

From my reading of nutrional studies (probably been at it for close to 20 years), I think this is the best diet healthwise there is. I know I had some health problems go away on the diet, as did my husband. It is also consistent with the only diet shown to reverse heart disease, which strongly runs in my family. Everyone else in my family is on multiple drugs, while I, the one on the "crazy diet," am fine ... and trimmer than everyone else.

I know my position is not a popular one on this board. Believe me, I don't intend to get into an argument here. Any diet has to be consistent with one's body and its reactions. I am only posting so you will get a full spectrum of ideas. Read up on everything, try different diets if you wish, and make up your own mind.

If you want to read up on McDougalling, you can go to www.drmcdougall.com which has a wealth of medical information, recipes, a description of the diet, a free newsletter, and an active discussion board. He has a number of books out, in case you wish to read more on the subject.

The only other thing I would say is to be careful in seeing conclusions drawn from studies. You need to know what precise diet was prescribed and was actually followed. I know I've seen statements made about "low fat" diets, where I certainly wouldn't consider the diets to have been close to that.

I wish you, and everyone else, the best of luck in finding the diet that makes you feel and look your best.

You may wish to look at the National Weight Control Registry, which looks at the experiences of those who have lost a significant amount of weight and kept it off. Here is a summary:

http://www.nwcr.ws/Research/default.htm

and here are the research findings: http://www.nwcr.ws/Research/published%20research.htm

I also found that exercise is critical to weight loss. So don't forget that part of the equation.

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Hi hathor,

Thank you for your reply! I am open to any and all diets. I'm sure there are different diets that are best for different individuals and I respect that. I was hoping that people could just post their experiences with different plans and what has helped them. I have never heard of the McDougall diet, but I'm interested in learning and reading about all different diets. I was hoping this thread could help others' who are searching through different plans. There is a ton of information and sometimes it's a bit overwhelming. Hearing other's experiences seems like a good way to learn about diets.

I tried to use the traditional food pyramind for myself at mypyramid.gov which is a site with different goals and plans from the USDA. I'm fine with it as long as I exercise about an hour a day. As soon as I stop exercising the weight starts adding up fast. So for me, something doesn't seem right with it. I struggle to get to my ideal weight...it's just out of reach but I can't make it. I've always had a bulging stomach and think that it might be something in my traditional diet.

So it is open to anyone who wants to contribute and it will hopefully be a learning experience for those of use still searching. :)

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Hi,

Since I've spent practically my whole life trying to lose weight, I should probably let you know what is working for me. I actually saw the smallest number I have ever seen on the scale this morning! 124! I got on and off the scale three times just to see if it was correct. That's 100 pounds down from my highest.

I tried Weight Watchers and found myself obsessing about food and eating sugary, crummy food because it was low in points. I lost a little weight, but it wasn't the right plan for me. Since then I've tried eating a ton of meat, fruits, veggies, and low-fat dairy. I gained weight and felt horrible with that.

So, then I moved to the other end of the spectrum and gave up all animal products. I did the McDougall diet that Hathor mentioned, but I felt worse after eating grains and potatoes, so I cut those out too. I also felt like I needed more fats, so I added avocadoes and nuts (not peanuts). After that, I felt better and lost weight without trying. Now I eat fruits, vegetables, cacao, raw nuts and seeds. It sounds restrictive, but I'm more satisfied now than I've ever been before. I really don't have cravings for foods, never have stomach pains, don't feel heavy after meals, and eat whenever I'm hungry. I would say that about 75%-95% of my food each day is raw, and I think that has helped me.

I also exercise regularly and ensure that at least one of my meals is based around green leafy vegetables.

To answer another question, the one thing I find restrictive about it, is that I usually have to have food with me. I know that's not new for someone who is gluten free, but it can be a little harder with fresh foods. I usually have a ziploc bag with almonds, a banana, a clemetine or two, an apple, and a Lara bar with me when I know I'll be away from home. Having that keeps me from even glancing towards a food court or restaurant.

I've been eating like this for about 4 months and don't see myself changing it in the near future.

I think I answered all of your questions. If you're looking to lose weight, think about what feels right to you. I never liked meat, but always felt like I had to eat it to have a balanced diet. I really think that was wrong of me because I now feel better than ever.

Ezme

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Ezme,

It sounds like you are doing Dr. Fuhrman's Food for Life diet. Are you familiar with that? I haven't read his book, so I can't say for sure. But from what I know of it, it sounds like it. If you haven't read his book or checked out his web site, you may want to. Another guy to check out is Dr. Harris.

I have added a bit more fat than the traditional McD diet designed for weight loss, since I don't need to lose. I emailed him and he said I should add higher fat plant foods to keep from losing any more. When I go out to eat, I don't obsess if there is oil in what I order. (One of the few sorts of restaurants I can regularly find stuff to eat is at tapas restaurants. They do love their olive oil! I admit I'm confused a bit about the olive oil, having seen Dr. Esselstyn say it is bad for you [citing studies] and Dr. Blaylock say it is good for you [citing studies]. At home, I just use (a little) oil when I am cooking with hot chilis because that brings out the fat-soluble capaisin. And I don't obsess if I have a product with a tiny bit of oil in it ...)

Dr. Esselstyn, who did the first reversal of coronary heart disease by diet study (not just cholesterol reduction, but visible opening up of clogged arteries) says that 10% fat is the reversal diet, while 20% fat is heart disease prevention level.

Certainly if there aren't any starches you like or can well tolerate, you have to find your calories somewhere! How are you with legumes?

As for me, I seem to get sick if I have too much fat. Both my brother and my mom have had to have their gall bladders out (or so the docs said) and my sister can't seem to handle too much fat either. I love nuts and seeds, assuming I can eat them in moderation :lol:

But I love, love, love my starches. Without them I never seem satisfied for long. But, from my reading on this forum, it seems like our reactions to food can be quite individual.

Oh, I forgot that I DO eat cacao, if by this you mean dark chocolate. I choose to believe the studies that say it contains wonderful phytonutrients. Of course, the studies are funded by the chocolate industry, but I am willing to overlook that :rolleyes: I don't have too much, because I only want to eat fair trade chocolate without soy lecithin which isn't readily available at the stores I usually frequent.

I forgot to mention that McDougall has a wrinkle for more rapid weight loss. (On his discussion board, this is referred to as MWL or Maximum Weight Loss.) In this, one avoids refined carbs (flour, sugar) and limits fruits to twice a day. In the last bit of weight I lost, I had largely switched to this. I think a lot of the success people may have with low carb diets comes about because they are cutting out the refined carbs which seem to predominate in the Standard American Diet. One can't forget high fructose corn syrup either. From what I've read, that stuff seems to be treated by the body like fat. It seems to be everywhere, but I try to avoid it the best I can.

One other wrinkle ... I found that limiting alcohol also helped with losing. Fortunately, I don't want to lose any more so I can have my wine. Yes, I like the "wine is good for you" studies as well :lol:

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Thank you hathor, you are very knowledgable about diets I've never even heard of. :)

Wow metraezme, your diet is working so well for you. Congrats on loosing 100* lbs and reaching that terrific weight of 124. You must be very proud of that accomplishment. I think it's great that you eat so much raw food. I've read a lot about the importance of the enzymes in raw food that get ruined by cooking food. We always eat carrots and celery raw and most of the time broccoli. My children even like it that way because they have eaten those veggies raw since they started eating. I also love fresh fruits and nuts and seeds. I think I would do better if I could add more varieties in my diet. There are a lot of things I've not tried.

hathor, I think your doing a wise diet given your families history. It seems it's working well for you too since your not having the same problems as the rest of your family. I think it's wonderful that you've found something healthy and that makes you feel good.

It seems no matter what the diet starts out as, it needs to be customized for each individual's needs. Both of you have been successful because you have tried different diets, worked out the kinks and settled on something that seems right.

I've already cut out most processed sugars, cut out most dairy, started eating nuts and seeds a while back, and went whole grain prior to diagnosis. Now I'm learning about whole grain flours on the gluten free diet. This all has happened over a long period of time so I'm used to these changes.

Thank for the great information. I'd be interested in hearing more about other diets if anyone has anything to offer!

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Wow Hathor,

Thanks for the long response! I learned a lot from it.

I'd never heard of Dr. Harris nor Dr. Fuhrman, but there websites do seem to show a diet pretty close to mine. I'm going to check for Dr.Fuhrman's book at the bookstore since we don't have a library here.

As for your tapas and wine, I don't think you can have one without the other, can you? Besides, look at all of the slim people in Spain who eat tapas, drink wine, walk a bit and keep themselves in good shape. I tend to believe that having some fats in the diet from olive oil, nuts, avocados, cacao (I buy the actual cacao beans so I can snack on them), and a little coconut are good for us. I know I never lost any weight on a low-fat diet and was never satieted.

I do eat some grains. I'm going to Mexico on Thursday for two weeks to see my boyfriend and I know I'll be eating corn tortillas, tamales, rice, and beans, but I really don't miss not eating them most of the time. If I do have the desire to eat them, I do it. I'm not super strict with myself. Oddly enough, going gluten free for me has been quite simple because I never really ate bread, pasta, or other grain based foods. All in all, I'm not suffering for calories, but if I do get too thin, like 115 pounds, I will be adding in some grains and grain based products. I've never actually had to think of that before; I've always had an excess of calories.

Ezme

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I'm mostly raw too. I eat nuts/seeds/veggies mostly, with some dried fruits (trying to give these up since they have too much sugar, or at least give them up with other foods as I think they are not combining well).

I struggle with the question of meat or no meat. I was a vegetarian for 15 years, but started eating meat when I had to give up gluten. I don't do dairy or soy either. So right now I'm experimenting with eating meat along with my raw diet. What I've found so far is that I don't like the way it snuffs out my appetite. I can go hours and hours w/o getting hungry, and though that may be normal, I'm not used to it. I have a very fiery diegestion. So I'm working on this one. I'm also contemplating adding raw dairy. I think I'll start that today or tomorrow and see how it goes. I tested alright for dairy through Enterolab, but it's also been years since I've had any. It always caused me constipation before.

On the strictly raw diet w/o grains beans, it is hard to keep the weight on. I did not need to lose weight, but probably lost 10 pounds. It's alright, I'm happy about that; but I do struggle now to keep it between 120 and 130.

Anyway, that's my story. I think the sequence went: vegetarian, vegan plus fish, no dairy, no wheat, no gluten, no soy, no beans, no grains, paleo diet, raw diet, and now raw diet plus 2X/week maybe meat and raw dairy. We'll see how it goes.

Oh yeah, I do also think there is something to the metabolic typing issue. I don't do well with carbs, other people do. I do think one important thing is that carbs and proteins don't mix together in the same meal - protein requires acid, carbs require alkali, and those two things offset one another, making digestion difficult and incomplete.

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