Sunday, October 10, 2010

"Right" or " wrong" nutrition - who decides?

Balanced DietImage via Wikipedia

I have been feeling better little by little each day for couple of weeks, by feeding myself with "right" foods that my stomach demanded. Actually all these "right foods" such as "white rice", "white wheat", milk and red meat, were all "wrong foods" by my understanding during all these recent several years.

For long time, I purposely cut off white flour and white rice in order to control my weight. Not only that, by candida diet theory sugar and white flour are both "the best friends" of yeast candida so they need to be eliminated completely from daily menu. However, after suffering my recent relapse, my stomach demanded me to eat white flour and white rice, otherwise I would get into serious trouble. And as matter of fact, I have been feeling better and better by listening to my stomach.

There are so many nutrition recommendations out there. So many researches by experts tell people what to eat and what not to. While I understand that many of these tips or theories were "scientifically" studied, I am still not completely convinced their efficiency, rather, I am quite convinced that "right" nutrition is really a "depend on each individual" business - especially for unknown chronic illness patients. In many cases, I think patients would feel better if they chose to listen to their own body instead of doctors.

I have never done any food allergy test, nor I understand what exactly the symptoms of food allergy are. Of course, just because I never had such experience doesn't mean other people don't have it. However, I have read a book written by some chronic patient telling story about his food allergy test: it ended like basically he was allergy to most types of food!

I thought I had "put my health on my own hands" since long time ago. I trusted doctors before, but they have convinced me that they had no clues about me at all. So I learned to take care of myself by reading informations online, from books or sharing others' experience. I have been also keeping an open mind in experimenting many different treatments/regimens by myself. Now, looking back, I "seem" to be able to get an idea of what's really going on with me: I have not really "put my health on my own hands". If my previous years of chronic problems were caused by my years of bad life style, my recent couple of years' problems mostly were caused by my "ruthless" "anti - Chinese traditional" experiment on diet. Basically, I ignored what my stomach wanted, forced my body to listen to my mind. Now, my body is launching her finally retaliation - forced me to eat what she needs!

More and more, I believe that the complexity of human body is beyond Newton's mechanics, and dealing with such a complexity with limited semeiological treatments, or, "scientifically" designing a few of certain "healthy" diet structures for all people is not only NOT ENOUGH but NOT RIGHT, and even DANGEROUS. I also start to believe that recovering from chronic illness is actually a personal business - each person has her/his own causes and treatments. Of course, knowledge from experts can help us understand our body function in general, but, if we admit that our body is more complicated than what our mind has already understood, we do need to respect it by yielding our mind to our body.

So again, "listen to our body". We, ourselves are the only one who have direct contact with our own body, and our body never stops giving us clues to save ourselves, if we could only listen to it!

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  1. I think there's is an element of truth about listening to what your body needs. As a kid I was brought up on a rice-vegetables-fish diet.

    Living in the west now, I notice how unwell I feel if I eat certain types of food in larger quantity though my children and husband seem to have no complains whatsoever. Nearly everyday I need to have rice as part of my diet as it helps my stomach to settle. My children on the other hand - anything western goes!! And they prefer Western food to Chinese.

    So whether we've trained our bodies to certain types of food or not - I do listen to my stomach more than I listen to my husband :) and certainly food that makes me feel ill (like roasted peanuts though I'm not allergic to them) I stay away!

  2. Most doctors know next to nothing about nutrition, and even the nutritionists contradict themselves every day. As you say, listen to your own body. Discover what works for you. That's the only real test.

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  5. It depends on your body's needs and the amount of physical activity you do.