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Liana Bakker

Eating to Avoid Illness

Eating to avoid illnessThis is for anyone who has struggled with the diet and lifestyle changes that one needs to make due to chronic illness, sensitivity, allergy or weight-loss . I wrote this just after Christmas and when I was feeling particularly sick.

Eating to Avoid Illness

It’s days like this that I remember why I do all the things I do.

Some days it seems silly to stop eating tasty, delicious food when it’s……well……so tasty and delicious!

Normally everyone is eating amazingly yummy treats and looking at me like I’m a weight watching freak unwilling to indulge myself in the traditional holiday gluttony. This year I met half way. If you didn’t know any different you wouldn’t have noticed that I was avoiding anything.

The past couple days I’ve woken up with oral thrush (not so tasty and delicious), the past few weeks my bones have been aching more, and my tendons and nerves have been more inflamed. It was tolerable and I enjoyed eating the take-out, the Christmas cookies and indulging in my new found love of egg nog.

My Friday night yoga class was traded for parties or comfy nights in watching Christmas movies with more of the aforementioned egg nog.

Self-care was traded for meeting up with friends. The ice paks, stretching and strengthening exercises slowly disappeared.

Going to bed early so I could go to the gym in the morning was traded for Netflix marathons and sleeping in late.

I kept delaying when I would get back to my healthy habits. They have been on a downward spiral since the beginning of fall.

“After Halloween”

“In December”

“After New Years”

Today my body decided for me.

A migraine for 36 hours, sore eyes, horrible leg and arm pain, nausea, vomiting every time I eat, drink or move too fast, abdominal pain and nerve pain in the face and neck. Not to mention the fungal infection in my mouth.

Some might write it off as just a horrible migraine (and it was) or say I caught a nasty bug but I know better.

I know that it is the mistreatment of my body that did this.

I don’t put any blame on myself. I am human. I make errors. I have addictions. I fall to social pressure. I want the easy route.

My “errors” made me spend a day and a half curled in a ball slowing feeding myself water with a syringe so that I don’t barf it up.

But I find comfort in the fact that I caused this.

Is it fair that I have 2 days of misery for some moderate indulging for a few months while others basically have a sugar IV hooked up 24/7 and feel fabulous?

No.

But thems the breaks.

If I caused it I can change it.

It may not be easy but I will do it and I will feel better very quickly.

I will become dedicated to eating and living the way my body loves.

I will shop for healthy food and prep all my veggies the second I get home.

I will meal plan and cook at home.

I will pack a lunch to work everyday.

I will eat at home before going to visit with friends.

I will keep snacks in the car and eat them in case someone suggests grabbing a bite.

I will say “no” ten times when someone asks again and again if I’m sure I don’t want dessert.

I will insult someone because they saw me eat chicken fingers with plum sauce 3 weeks ago but today I won’t eat what they’re serving.

I will eat something I don’t want to when someone prepares something especially for me even though it could make me feel worse.

I will try really hard not to become defensive when people ask and then criticize me for not eating certain things.

I will eat something I normally wouldn’t when a special occasion comes up because I feel that I deserve to celebrate with everyone else.

I will have to explain myself to everyone of why I’m suddenly doing something different.

I will enjoy doing things different and lower the threshold for what I consider a special occasion.

I will start craving bad foods at home and justify having them when I want a quick meal.

I will start doing less prep and these quick meals will become more frequent.

I will enjoy not spending Sunday nights figuring out what to eat for the week and prepping all my food.

I will slowly let all my other self-care activities slide and I will enjoy the time off from them.

I will be ok like this for a couple months since the enjoyment of my free time will out win the pain and discomfort I have.

I will have a day when a warning sign comes up telling me that I need to make a change.

I will either make that change immediately and start back at the top of the list or I will procrastinate for another 6 weeks until it becomes so bad that I have no choice.

I will probably go through this cycle once or twice a year.

That’s ok though. One day I may figure out how to live the way I want to without having to put in so much effort but today is not that day.

So, for now, I will do the best that I can and will keep doing the best that I can until I start to feel exhausted; Not from the pain or illness but from trying so hard to avoid it.

Liana Bakker

Be Healthy. Be Wealthy. Be Wise.

Did this resonate with you? Let me know what happens to you when you don’t take care of yourself the way you should.

*Remember the book I co-authored is coming out soon!
Born For This! the Journey to Success in Life, Love and Business hits the shelves of Amazon March 5th. Sign up below to get updates

2 comments… add one

  • Great article. You’re right, when you’re living with a chronic illness you really have to do what feels good in the moment and not judge yourself for decisions that might make you feel bad later.

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