SO many people are currently experiencing extreme issues with various food allergies and tummy trouble coming into 2017. Thankfully I haven’t been plagued by gut problems, but my dear friend, Gabbi (pictured above with her amazing hubby, Patrick), has inspired me with her very recent and, to me, EPIC story of gut health victory after suffering miserably for several years.

  • Why was I so moved by her testimony? Because, as young and healthy as she is, her life was literally being ‘stolen’ by gut issues and she had tried everything and finally took matters into her own hands and found a way to win this battle! She didn’t accept being labeled by the ‘experts’, she didn’t wear the ‘victim badge’ she fought hard and got creative and I thought her story would give you hope and very practical help if you or someone you love has found their gut issues debilitating. Here’s Part 1 of ‘Practical Paleo: My Life Changing Experiment‘ a personal (and very honest) written journal by Gabby Hurburt….

I’ve always had a passion for delicious food. The tastes, aromas, and the satisfaction of cooking a meal and seeing people who I love enjoying it, makes me smile.  Let me just say: I love food!

Since getting E.Coli in 2013, the last three years have been a struggle for me. My stomach has not been the same. I used to be able to eat anything without any issues. After E.Coli, my gut health has been up and down and has progressively gotten worse. I’ve felt good one week, then the next, I’m in intense pain. I’ve seen naturopaths and digestive specialists who have all told me the same thing: “Your stomach is EXTREMELY inflamed.” (Yes, thank you for telling me something I already know.) All I had to do was lift up my shirt and you could see the outline of my poor bloated angry stomach screaming out for help, along with the fun layer of fat that E.Coli left me with, that refused to go away no matter how hard I worked out or how many abs I did. Oh, and don’t forget my stabbing stomach pain and chronic diarrhea for three years straight! Yep, every… single… day.

I knew my body wasn’t happy with what I was feeding it, but I couldn’t determine which foods were causing the problem. The vicious cycle continued. My frustration peaked. I just wanted someone to tell me what to do to fix the problem.

Finally, a little over a month ago, I got entirely fed up with feeling crappy all the time and decided it was time to get to the bottom of it. I looked online for a food elimination diet to figure out what foods were causing the issues for me. I found the website of a doctor who claimed she had helped thousands of IBS sufferers get their digestion back on track. Since my symptoms seemed to indicate IBS, I looked at the recommended diet and decided to try it out for a week and see if it helped. Here’s what I generally ate:

Breakfast: Oats or rice cereal with almond milk and banana
Lunch: Grilled chicken/fish/turkey with white rice 
Snacks: Rice cakes with almond or peanut butter, bananas
Dinner: Salmon/chicken/turkey with baked potato or white rice.

I tried this meal plan for five days. By the end of day five I was in EXTREME pain. It felt like someone was stabbing my stomach from the inside. I couldn’t figure it out. I was eating “healthy,” right?  Everything I knew or thought I knew about good nutrition didn’t seem to be helping. I was at a loss. I felt so helpless. In addition, two weeks before I got E.Coli, I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism (under active thyroid). After E.Coli, I was diagnosed as hypoglycemic (low blood sugar). I was a mess and I knew it. (to be continued)

  • [Tune in tomorrow here on my blog for Part 2 tomorrow of Practical Paleo: My Life Changing Experiment’