Black magic medicine
‘Do you want the… (she pauses) more eh… crazy recommendation, or you know… like a regular dietician’. I look at my doctor and cock my head, (like my German Shepherd might do) willing my single brain cell to roll from one end of the vacuous cavern to the other.
‘Yeah give me the crazy’.
‘She’s not exactly crazy, she’s actually a very good friend of mine, but people find her… eh… a little extreme’.
‘Is she hot?’
‘What? Eh… I guess’
‘Okay, what’s her number’. (pretty much every decision in my life has been colored by these two personality traits, seems unreasonable to deviate from a winning formula now)
I’ve been feelin’ miserable for a while now. I even tried to Keto/run myself into some semblence of Zusammenreißen. (pulling oneself towards oneself). Which is usually my go-to proposition to un-fuck myself. But this time round I just ended up feeling worse…. and then sad-eating bread. (my pendulum life cycle)
So I ended up going for a full range of bloods. Pretty much everything has been dialed up to a dark shade of orange. Except my cholesterol, which was weirdly fine.
Doctor – *looks at test results* yeah… your uric acid is a bit high. Maybe drink more water.
Dietician – *looks at test results* OMG you’re basically a dead-man walking.
From ‘drink more water’ to you have one foot in the great-tractor-beam-to-the-sky-realm (or you know, the hot place) was quite an… eh… adjustment.
So as these things go, I got a good talking to, a meal plan/verboten list and a toolbox full of supplements. (Seriously, I went and bought a toolbox to store everything… and then, because I was feelin’ cute sent a picture of me and my toolbox singing ‘Bob the builder, can we fix it’, to my new pseudo-therapist). She lolled. (because I’m funny… and also because she wants to be paid)
I imagine that the princes of hell had some input into the sheet of green paper she hands to me… it has my meals for the month printed on it, designed to trample my already fragile psyche and grind down my will to live. But… I have to get those numbers back down to ‘Not-dying’… and you know, impress someone with my commitment and staunch stoicism.
So (for example) breakfast is…
2 tbsp Oats, 2 tbsp Chia seeds, 2 tbsp ground flaxseeds. Overnighted. And then mixed with 50grams plant based protein (basically Hemp as far as I can tell), one cup of mixed berries and a grated apple. Topped of with cinnamon. About 500cal.
Which sounds nice enough, the reality though is spooning a brownish sludge into your mouth hole and swallowing.
BUT… I’ve learned something interesting about myself. I’m weirdly agnostic when it comes to breakfast. And apparently, first thing in the morning, I don’t really care about anything except convenience. Also, freakishly mindblowing for me is that this keeps me full and un-hungry until lunchtime. Seriously the last month has seen almost zero snacking. (snacking is likely to be the present participle that defines the last forty years of my life). So what if it looks like dystopian sci-fi food that was squeezed out of a toothpaste tube?
The rest of the diet is also mostly plant based, with legumes being heavily underscored in bright crayon. This is pure anathema to someone who… on the surface at least, likes to espouse a certain level of paleo-ism. I don’t think I’ve eaten beans… in ten years maybe. As a nod to my omnivorous sensibilities she has graciously allowed me to eat (wild-caught) fish, (free-range) eggs and venison. (so maybe more paleo than I like to give it credit for)
Oh my banned list is; Gluten, sugar, dairy, coffee, alcohol, anything with seed oil in it. (which immediately makes 99.8% of everything in the Supermarket a dietary impossibility I see)
I make this guttural, derisive sound that I hope conveys my contempt/incredulity (and doesn’t sound like I’m trying to dislodge a bogey).
Coffee was obviously the one I was most concerned about. ‘Don’t worry, you can have four cups of Matcha with a plant based milk in it if you want’.
Okay, I say, knowing that I can write off the next three days to a blinding headache and a simmering rage that puts everyone around me in considerable danger.
It blows my mind, but the transition from coffee to matcha was completely seamless with zero loss of life.
Supposedly this is because, of the L-theanine in matcha reduces cortisol by creating alpha waves in the brain to produce a state of calm and serene alertness. Coffee does the opposite: it causes an adrenaline and cortisol spike.
Who knew. Not me.
In any event, last week I went to go visit my Brother-in-law in Cape Town. Ostensibly. I actually went to the comic book store. But graciously acquiesced to IRL. The breakfast place he chose was nice, but had nothing new-agey that wasn’t the black-stuff and so I had a latte. And then because it was so amazing, I had another one. (so three weeks without coffee at this point)
Not giant sizes. So maybe two shots of espresso total. Walking through the mall ten minutes later I… I swear to god, I could feel the universe vibrating as it expanded outwards towards infinity. Holy crap I thought as I steadied myself on the escalator… this feels insane. ‘CAN YOU NOT FEEL THE GALAXY ACCELERATING?’
Up until recently it would have taken… two double espressos chased with a Red Bull (or two) to get me into the same ballpark. (and if you’re wondering what sort of imbecile would do this… I admit to nothing… refuse to make eye-contact, and then flee the room)
In any event. Its almost been a month now…. and… (somewhat begrudgingly) I feel much better. Like MUCH better.
I’ve also lost a metric-fuck-tonne of weight. About 9kg as of this morning. Which is… *thinks* eh… *counts on fingers* is like 20lbs in American.
Which is quite good. I think.
I’m feeling less emo. And perhaps, most interestingly, I am dreaming again. I don’t ever dream. Like maybe once… every couple of months (he says as some sort of thumb suck number, but its pretty rare). I have dreamed something every night for the last two weeks… and my mind… I am horrified to admit this… but my mind is soooo much sharper. Maybe not sharper… but my recall is so much better. I was looking at an old school photo and I could remember everyones name an surname. Which sounds like a stupid thing to be impressed by, but there is NO WAY I could have done that a month ago. The best I could have done would have been ‘yeah that chick… with the hair… and the face’ and then shrugged.
I’ve always been super skeptical (as a non-celiac) as to the ‘supposed’ benefits of going off gluten. But there may be something to this.
Also. Four weeks without coffee (if you don’t count my little wayward encounter).
An unimaginable circumstance not so long ago.
OMG. Your commitment is commendable, and I’m glad you’re doing so well! Bah, if I hadn’t just bought an espresso machine, I would consider a trial of this, though I’m pretty sure my brain isn’t working largely because I’m not sleeping. But maybe I’m not sleeping because of what I’m eating… Anyway, carry on! You are killing it. 🙂
(SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE!)