PART THREE: REINTRODUCTION
The Reintroduction of forbidden foods into the diet
This post and the subsequent posts in this four-part series, ill fully explain and guide users through this “elimination diet protocol” known as the RepairVite Program from Apex Energetics (the “Program”). I’ve broken the Program down into four stages:
How I Repaired My Leaky Gut Using the Four “Rs”:
- the RepairVite Program description and guidelines
- the reorganization of one’s diet and habits during the protocol period
- the reintroduction of forbidden foods into the diet (Today’s Post); and
- the permanent reformation of one’s health.
This Program is not for the faint of heart or weak of willed. It’s definitely one of the hardest “diets” I’ve ever been on, but, in the end, it was the beginning of a transformation of my entire way of eating, how I look at food, and how I listen to and treat my body.[/box]
So it’s been what probably seemed to be (or at least seemed to be in the beginning) the longest several weeks of your eating life. You’ve been restricting your diet and following the RepairVite Program as outlined in parts 1 and part 2 of this series and now it’s time to begin reintroducing, or “provocating,” those “Foods to Avoid” list back into your diet one-by-one.
This is also the time that you will be detoxing your liver by incorporating the ClearVite formula into your diet. During the provocation period, you should use 1 scoop of ClearVite 2 times per day for at least three weeks. I used the ClearVite – SF Vanilla K-24, but there are other flavors such as ClearVite – CR Chocolate K-36 and ClearVite – PSF (Vanilla Pea Protein ) K-84. I will discuss liver detoxification in the next and final post of this series.
Dietary Provocation – Protocol1
Adding back, or “reintroducing” food groups should be performed one at a time over a three day period. This is due to the fact that food sensitivities are delayed in their onset. Sensitivities occur between 8 and 72 hours after ingestion and are therefore difficult to determine. Furthermore, if you consume foods on the “Foods to Avoid” list on a frequent basis, your immunologic response becomes weak over time making it difficult to correlate to your symptoms. However, once a food that you are sensitive to is removed from the diet, the immune system recovers. Now when you consume that food your immunologic response is elevated and easily recognizable.
Reintroduction is most easily accomplished by choosing one food from the “Foods to Avoid” list, eating it for one day, and then monitoring symptoms for the next two days while maintaining the same diet you have been following for the last several weeks. Keep a dietary journal and take notice of any subtle immunologic symptoms such as brain fog, itchiness, mild rashes, fatigue, mild joint pain, etc. when you reintroduce food groups back into your diet. If your symptoms are mild, then let your system calm, and later in the provocation process reintroduce that food an additional time to verify if it is a problem or not. Remember: Don’t undo all of your hard work with processed foods, sugars, junk foods, and sodas! You’ve just cleaned out your system and filling it up with those kinds of foods will only counteract the benefits of this program.
Which food group you bring back into the diet is entirely up to you. A common rule is to bring back the particular group that you crave the most. Unfortunately, this is often the group in which you have the highest sensitivity to.
The food that you reacted to must be eliminated from your diet for now. Sometimes it is possible to return the reactive food to your diet after months of elimination and sometimes there needs to be a lifetime restriction.
Below are categories of the food groups to provocate the diet:
1. Gluten (Barley. Rye, Wheat, Spelt and Kamut. Remember that Oats can be cross contaminated with gluten, so separate by consuming gluten-free oats)
a. Milk, whey, cheeses, creams, yogurt, mayonnaise, etc.
b. I also break dairy into pasteurized vs. raw
5. Soy (milk, sauce, protein, oils, etc.)
6. All other non-soy lectins (nuts, beans, potatoes, tomato, eggplant, pepper, peanut oil, etc.) If you determine this category to be a problem, then break it down further to be as specific as possible.
7. Non-gluten containing grains (rice, buckwheat, amaranth, millet, quinoa. etc.)
8. Alcohol (Beer, unless gluten is a problem, wine, sake, liqueurs and distilled)
It is important to restate that, during the reintroduction phase of this program, you will remain on the elimination diet you have been following for the past several weeks and will only reintroduce one new food every three days. If, after three days, you have not experienced any negative reactions to the new food, you may try reintroducing another food to your diet for one day and monitoring symptoms for the next three days. This process can be repeated as many times as is necessary, until all suspected foods have been reintroduced.
Dietary Provocation – Real Life
So, after three weeks of dietary restrictions, here is how I provocated those forbidden foods back into my diet:
1. Step One: Make a plan. Figure out what food group you are craving the most and make that the first one you add back in. (TIP: If you believe that you have a sensitivity to a certain food group – for me this was soy – make that the last group of foods you add back in.) I was dying without my morning coffee so I added caffeine first and, since coffee really isn’t a food group and I know that all caffeine does for me is give me a slight energy boost, I also chose eggs so that I could expand my breakfast choices. On day 22 of the program, I woke up and made myself a large cup of black coffee and some hard boiled eggs. The rest of my diet remained the same for the next three days.
2. Step Two: Monitor any symptoms/reactions. As suggested above, I should have kept a journal of any reactions that I had to the foods, but, to be honest, I’m just not one of those people who keep journals of my feelings (physical or emotional) so I didn’t. I did really listen to my body for probably the first time in my life, however and I tried to notice if I felt more tired or bloated or if I got runny noses, swollen glands, etc.
3. Repeat: If you have no reactions from the first food group, move on to the next one on your list, eat that for 3 days, and monitor your reactions. After 3 days of adding eggs and no negative side effects, I moved on to the next food group – milk. This time I ate some organic, non-fat, plain Greek yogurt for breakfast for the next three days and monitored my symptoms. Next was gluten, then dairy… you get the idea. Repeat this process until you’ve successfully added all of the food groups back. This process should take an additional three weeks.
NOTE: As stated above, if you have a reaction to a particular food, you must stop eating that food group and then wait until your symptoms subside before going onto the next group. Most symptoms will subside within three days. During that time pay attention to your body’s reaction to the food that you ate. Did you break out in night sweats while sleeping? Did you get gassy and bloated? Did the glands in your neck swell? Did your joints ache? These are all symptoms that I experience when I eat soy and, to a lesser extent, gluten, specifically wheat. Your reaction(s) may be different. Just listen. Your body will let you know when it’s not happy.
I had no idea that I was so sensitive to these foods before going through the RepairVite program, but once my system was cleaned out and free from all of the toxins that I’d been consuming for so many years, my body’s reactions to these foods were amplified. This is the purpose of the program. It is meant to identify what foods are preventing us from living our healthiest lives.
By the end of the program you will have much of the information you need to make the permanent changes necessary to live your healthiest life. It can be, and might need to be, a time for total reformation of your lifestyle and your attitude towards diet and nutrition. In the next and final post, I will discuss my personal reformation and will provide tips on how to work around your food sensitivities so that you can create a sustainable plan that will last a lifetime.
1 This information was taken directly from the “Dietary Provocation” handout provided to me by the Chiropractic Neurology & Wellness Center.