5 Benefits Of Doing An Elimination Diet

Before and after I learned about my food allergy to soy and lactose intolerance. I was in a constant state of inflammation and could lose fat. Learn 5 benefits of doing an elimination diet to improve your health, clear your skin and heal your gut. Discover why an elimination diet is important plus how it works.Learn 5 benefits of doing an elimination diet to improve your health, clear your skin, uncover food allergies as well as food sensitivities, and heal your gut. Discover why you should do an elimination diet plus how it works.

When I first started on my health and fitness journey around 2009, I was the heaviest I had ever been in my life and just didn't feel good in my own skin. With the help of my new boyfriend at the time Chris, now husband, I started putting more focus on the food I ate and my fitness routine in order to lose weight.

The more I changed my eating habits from eating whatever I felt like at the moment to switching to eating healthier meals, I could finally begin to see how my body was reacting to certain food. Meal prepping and planning played a big role in changing my eating habits and being consistent!

While I was eating healthy at the time, I had doubts about dairy and thought it could be a big reason I wasn't losing as much weight as I should have been.

I then removed all dairy from my diet for 2 weeks and then added it back into my meals. I immediately had uncomfortable symptoms like gassiness and extreme bloating. It was downright embarrassing!

It was very clear that I was lactose intolerant and had probably been for quite some time BUT I wasn't able to see the symptoms because on a daily basis I was eating dairy in some form.

My bloated belly from a food allergy to soy and lactose intolerance. I was in a constant state of inflammation and could lose fat. Learn 5 benefits of doing an elimination diet to improve your health, clear your skin, uncover food allergies as well as food sensitivities, and heal your gut. Discover why you should do an elimination diet plus how it works.

After my dairy epiphany, I thought to myself: No big deal, I will replace it with soy! Big mistake for SO many reasons but one being that soy is not a healthy food despite what many health websites and labels tell us. We will have to save that conversation for another day.

So I went to the Starbucks on Astor Place in NYC and ordered a large soy milk latte. My body quickly told me that I couldn't tolerate soy either as I was having the same symptoms as dairy but on a bigger and more embarrassing level.

I later confirmed with my doctor that it was a true soy allergy, but again, I had no idea for so long since I unknowingly ate soy all the time (hint: it's in most packaged foods at the grocery store). My body was in a constant state of inflammation from the food I was eating which may have been the very thing holding me back from losing fat.

Without knowing it at the time, I had done an elimination diet!

The elimination diet is now the tool I use not only with my clients but also anytime I ever have a question about a certain food that seems to be bothering me or if I ever need to do a healthy reboot when my digestion seems off balance. 

So, what is the elimination diet?

Learn 5 benefits of doing an elimination diet to improve your health, clear your skin, uncover food allergies as well as food sensitivities, and heal your gut. Discover why you should do an elimination diet plus how it works.

The Elimination Diet is an approach used by the Functional Medicine community, health practitioners, allergists and nutritionists to figuring out which foods you have a food sensitivity, food intolerance or food allergy to.

This is done by eating an anti-inflammatory diet, removing a specific group of foods that are known to cause issues which allows the body to remove symptoms it may have. Later you will reintroduce certain planned foods back in one at a time to note any reactions creating a personalized eating plan.

Having this information about your individual health is important to understand so that you can eat mindfully, keep your digestive symptoms at bay, start healing your gut, and lose fat. So many benefits!

How does the elimination diet work?

The elimination diet works in two phases: The elimination phase and the reintroduction phase. I will explain both.

Phase one - Elimination: During the initial phase of an elimination diet, you will remove common culprits of digestive upset and common food allergens from your diet for 2-3 weeks. Most commonly you would remove some of the top 8 allergenic foods: soy, dairy, corn, egg, gluten, peanuts, tree nuts and shellfish. As well as any other food you think you may have an issue with such as nightshades, citrus fruit, yeast, legumes, etc. Please note: You should not test any foods that you believe you may have anaphylaxis reaction to.

This is so you can allow enough time for food allergens as well as other gut irritants to fully get out of your system. During this period you will naturally reduce inflammation in order to allow any symptoms to go away. You dial down your daily meals and snacks so that you are only eating real, nourishing foods that will not hurt your gut. In fact, you can begin to heal your gut with a proper elimination diet.

You will want to be strict during this phase in order to have success. Keep a list of all the foods you can and can't eat during the elimination phase so that you are very clear on which foods you need to avoid. It's very easy to forget and slip up on the foods you are used to eating.

It's important to keep meals simple and stay on track during this time so your body will be somewhat of a blankslate making it easy to figure out which foods work best for you!

Phase two - Reintroduction: Then after the 2-3 week elimination phase is over, you will enter the reintroduction phase. Gradually reintroduce the foods you removed during the initial elimination phase back into your diet one-by-one to see how your body reacts. We always suggest that our clients add back in the one food that they missed the most during the elimination phase but you can add them back in any order that you would like!

With certain food, you may notice reactions from it immediately and with others you may feel the effects a day or so later. During this phase, you will keep a food reaction journal so that you can pinpoint exactly how you are feeling both mentally and physically. Take note of any headaches, muscle aches, joint pain, constipation, gas, bloating, low energy, mood swings, fatigue, foggy thinking, etc.

Pinpointing the way these foods affect you are the key to your health success! This helps you to discover your personalized eating plan and you now know which foods to avoid in your daily life in order to avoid symptoms that may make you feel bad plus get healthier while at it!

 
The food you eat can be either the safest and most powerful form of medicine or the slowest form of poison.
— Ann Wigmore
 

An entire elimination diet can last between 1-3 months depending on how many foods you reintroduce back into your diet. The great thing about the elimination diet is that it can be tailored specifically to your personal needs with your health coach or practitioner.

In our Beat Belly Bloat program we have our clients go through a simple elimination diet that lasts only 28 days and then they have the freedom to add in extra foods if they would like to extend it. I believe 28 days is more manageable for client’s busy lives! 

Many people discount the elimination diet because they think they don't have food allergies or intolerances and it wont help them, but it goes way beyond just discovering foods you can't eat.

The benefits you can receive by doing an elimination diet are transformational in so many ways! So I wanted to share just a few with you today!

 
Learn 5 benefits of doing an elimination diet to improve your health, clear your skin, uncover food allergies as well as food sensitivities, and heal your gut. Discover why you should do an elimination diet plus how it works.
 

Here Are 5 Amazing Benefits of Doing an Elimination Diet:

1. Helps to uncover food sensitivities and allergies

When your body sees certain foods as a danger its natural defenses overreact creating a immune response to let you know in the form of digestive upset, IBS, constipation, hives, acne, excessive gas, bloating, wheezing, watery eyes, puffy skin, eczema, hives, etc. When you eat a food daily that you can’t tolerate, it puts your body in a constant state of inflammation and can later result in disease and weight gain. Once you uncover these foods, you can then take steps to heal your gut and later you may be able to eat that specific food again if desired.

2. Clears your skin

As I mentioned above, eczema which can come in the form of itching, dry, cracking red skin and even acne are often an immune response from certain food. What you think is just normal acne, could actually be your body telling you that diary or another food doesn't work for you and needs to be removed for a time. We’ve had clients in our program report back that their skin cleared up within days of the elimination phase after years of skin issues!

3. Start to lose fat

It has been discovered that when your body is in a constant state of inflammation, it can’t lose fat. It's hard to know what foods are inflaming your body if you are eating them often which is why elimination diets are so important to give your body a break from those foods. Also other foods like rancid cooking oils such as canola and soybean oil are also very inflammatory whether you have an issue with it or not, so during an elimination diet you can give you body a break from those foods as well.

4. Helps to fight migraine headaches

It was shown in a study that when people who suffered from frequent migraine headaches went on an elimination diet, it significantly reduced the number of migraines they experienced monthly. Rather than reaching for over-the-counter medication that only masks symptoms, you can use the elimination diet to uncover trigger foods that may be contributing to migraine headaches.

5. Helps to heal leaky gut

When you have a leaky gut, it often comes in the form of multiple food sensitivities, inflammation, bloating, weakened immune system, etc. A common reason for having a leaky gut is caused by poor diet, stress, internal and environmental toxins. Inflammation is your bodies natural defence mechanism against harmful invaders and its main purpose is to help remove those invaders and heal your body.

Leaky gut is when there’s a lot of inflammation in the gut and large holes develop in the intestinal lining allowing food, toxins and other foreign things to bypass into your bloodstream. As the undigested food or toxins pass into the bloodstream, it causes an immune response in your body and over time can lead to food sensitivities or more serious autoimmune diseases. During the elimination diet, you will remove inflammatory food and discover which ones are making you feel sick. You can then start to lower inflammation since we have removed gut irritants and make gut healing a priority.

Learn 5 benefits of doing an elimination diet to improve your health, clear your skin, uncover food allergies as well as food sensitivities, and heal your gut. Discover why you should do an elimination diet plus how it works.

Learn How to Stop Bloat From Happening

Want to reduce inflammation and lose fat for good? Start by downloading our free guide: 5 Easy Steps to Beating Belly Bloat!

We are Chris and Amber, a husband and wife team dedicated to helping you improve your nutritional and personal fitness habits for a better lifestyle. If you have issues with bloating, inability to lose fat, brain fog, or are in need of a proven nutrition and fitness plan to get you out of a rut, then sign up for our 28-Day Beat Belly Bloat Program today!

 

Disclaimer: I earn a small commission if you use some of the highlighted links to purchase products mentioned in this blog/website. I recommend only products that I would use my own home or that I would recommend to clients.

Amazon Disclaimer: We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Oven Roasted Cranberry Apple Brussels Sprouts

Last week, I shared my green bean, red onion and pecan side dish recipe which is one of favorite holiday dishes! Today, I want to share my oven roasted cranberry, apple, and brussel sprout side dish recipe, another favorite recipe that is sure to be a hit this holiday season! 

I'm sure you are thinking how tasty Brussel sprouts are but there is SO much more to them than taste! Brussel sprouts give your overall health a BIG boost, just one half cup serving of Brussels sprouts supplies us with 20 essential vitamins, including the powerful antioxidant vitamin C, numerous B vitamins, vitamin A, zinc, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and manganese. They also contain antioxidants such a glucosinolates and isothiocyanates which help protect you from free radicals which can cause cellular damage and disease in the body. They are also high in fiber which help to keep you full after a meal and also helps to keep your digestion moving along.

 
Oven Roasted Cranberry Apple Brussels Sprouts
 

Oven Roasted Cranberry Apple Brussels Sprouts

Oven Roasted Cranberry Apple Brussels Sprouts

Serves 2-3

  • 1 pint Brussels sprouts, trimmed and cut lengthwise

  • 1 medium apple, peeled, cored, and cut into eighths

  • ¼ cup dried cranberries

  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or coconut oil

  • Sea salt and cracked pepper to taste

Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. In a large bowl, toss Brussels sprouts, cranberries, sliced apple, and 1 tbsp olive oil together.

3. Brush glass baking dish with 1 tbsp olive oil. Spread mixture evenly into dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

4. Roast uncovered for 30 minutes.

5. Serve hot and enjoy!

 

Learn How to Stop Bloat From Happening

Want to reduce inflammation and lose fat for good? Start by downloading our free guide: 5 Easy Steps to Beating Belly Bloat!

We are Chris and Amber, a husband and wife team dedicated to helping you improve your nutritional and personal fitness habits for a better lifestyle. If you have issues with bloating,inability to lose fat, brain fog, or are in need of a proven nutrition and fitness plan to get you out of a rut, then sign up for our 28-Day Beat Belly Bloat Program

 
Amber Hale, Health Coach
 

Disclaimer: I earn a small commission if you use some of the highlighted links to purchase products mentioned in this blog/website. I recommend only products that I would use my own home or that I would recommend to clients. 

Amazon Disclaimer: We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Haricot Vert, Red Onion and Pecan Sauté Side Dish Recipe

Chris and I are preparing our menu for our Christmas day feast this week. We have been traveling so much lately to visit family and friends for Thanksgiving and weddings, so this holiday we are enjoying it relaxing at home in Brooklyn with our dog Chili Palmer. Even though it will just be the three of us, we aren't holding back with the holiday cooking. There is nothing better than holiday leftovers to eat throughout the week! 

Today, I am sharing with you one of my favorite side dish recipes which features the haricot vert or you may know it as the green bean or string bean. They are known for their beautiful rich shade of green and light delicious taste, making them a wonderful holiday side dish to brighten up any plate! It's a very versatile bean, one of the few that can be eaten fresh without having to be cooked. The green bean is actually a nutrition ninja! It's a great source of folate, fiber and vitamin K but it also high in carotenoids such as beta-carotene and lutien. Usually when we hear the word carotenoids, we normally think about red, orange and yellow vegetables but the chlorophyll in the green beans masks those colors! 

 
Haricot Vert, Red Onion and Pecan Sauté Side Dish Recipe
 

Haricot Vert, Red Onion and Pecan Sauté 

Serves 3-4

  • 1 pound thin green beans (haricot vert), trimmed

  • 2 tbsp unrefined virgin coconut oil

  • 1 medium red onion, sliced thin

  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme

  • ¼ cup chopped pecans

  • Sea salt and cracked pepper to taste

Instructions

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add green beans and boil for 4 minutes.

2. While boiling, prepare a large bowl filled with ice and water. Once beans have boiled, drain water and plunge into ice bath to stop from cooking. Drain and pat dry.

3. Saute the onion in coconut oil a few minutes until translucent. Add in green beans and cook 2 minutes.

4. Add in thyme, pecans, salt and pepper and continue to cook an additional 2 minutes.

5. Serve hot and enjoy!

Haricot Vert, Red Onion and Pecan Sauté Side Dish Recipe
 

 

Learn How to Stop Bloat From Happening

Want to reduce inflammation and lose fat for good? Start by downloading our free guide: 5 Easy Steps to Beating Belly Bloat!

We are Chris and Amber, a husband and wife team dedicated to helping you improve your nutritional and personal fitness habits for a better lifestyle. If you have issues with bloating,inability to lose fat, brain fog, or are in need of a proven nutrition and fitness plan to get you out of a rut, then sign up for our 28-Day Beat Belly Bloat Program

Amber Hale, health coach
 

Disclaimer: I earn a small commission if you use some of the highlighted links to purchase products mentioned in this blog/website. I recommend only products that I would use my own home or that I would recommend to clients. 

Amazon Disclaimer: We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

How To Weekly Meal Prep The Easy Way

One of the most important tools that Chris and I use for staying on track with our personal health goals whether it be muscle building, weight loss or just trying to avoid certain allergenic food ingredients is WEEKLY MEAL PREP! 

We have been doing this for years because it not only helps to keep us on track but it also saves us tons of time and money. The rare times that I do leave the house without my prepped meals, it usually costs me at least $10 for a somewhat healthy meal. When I cook my food at home, it can cost me only a few dollars per meal. It really makes a difference! Plus it's so hard to know what ingredients are really being used in your food when buying quick meals out on the go. 

So today I am going to share with you some of our favorite tips and tricks for weekly meal prep! 

 
How to weekly meal prep the easy way
 

Let's get started!

First, Make a list of all the food you enjoy eating.

  • Search for recipes on Pinterest or you can start with the recipes in my free 7-day meal plan. You can make all your meals ahead of time if you prefer, so save breakfast, lunch and dinner recipes that you love. Use recipes that will allow you to have leftovers so you can eat them throughout the week instead of using a different recipe for each meal. The easier the recipe the better so you don't get overwhelmed.

  • Print out a blank meal planner and start to map out your meals. Ideally your meal plan would include blank spaces for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.

  • Take inventory of the items you already have in the kitchen and create your grocery list.

Next, Choose your meal prep batch cooking method.

  • Choose between 2 options: the “cook once, eat three times” method or the big batch cooking method for the entire week.

  • The goal of each method is to decrease time spent in the kitchen AND money in the grocery store so that you can spend more time and money on stuff that you love!

 Option 1: “Cook Once, Eat Three Times” Method

How this option works is that you will do the bulk of your food shopping on either Saturday or Sunday morning. On Sunday, you would prep and cook your meals for days 1-3. Then, on Wednesday, you would prep and cook your meals for days 4-6 and so on. Technically you will need 1 extra lunch and dinner for Sunday, so the last part of the week will actually cover 4 meals unless Sunday is a free day.

 Each prepared dish needs to have be 3 (or 4 if you include Sunday) servings in order to cover three different meals. If you are cooking for 2 or more people, then you will want to double or triple your recipes accordingly and also adjust the amounts needed.

Option 2: Big Batch Cooking Method

If you are super busy, like me, you could do all your shopping on Saturday, cook the whole week's meals on Sunday and freeze them individually if needed. Then, just grab each meal as you go throughout the week - major time saver! This will allow you to add even more variety to your meal plan by rotating your 4 main entrees all throughout the week so you are never eating the same meals on back-to-back days.

Choose whichever cooking method works best for your schedule and your taste buds.

Remember: There is no right or wrong way to weekly meal prep. The main thing is for you to figure out which cooking method saves you the most amount of time and works best for your schedule.

Time Saving Meal Prep Tips:

  • Be productive while you cook! Cooking doesn't have to consume all your time. Turn on your favorite podcast, you can do other household chores, check emails or watch your favorite show or YouTube channel.

  • Create your meal plan with food you already have on hand. Save time and money by working with what you have in your freezer, pantry and fridge already. Keeping your meals as simple as possible will save you time and can still taste super delicious!

  • Clean-up while you cook. As you cook, start soaking and washing dishes or load your dish washer. wipe up messes on the counter and put away anything that isn't being used. This way you don't get overwhelmed with a big clean up job at the very end.

  • Take a few extra minutes to throw your complete meals into containers. Once all your cooking is done, throw your meals into little grab and go containers. This will save you tons of time during the week as you won't even need to think twice about making your lunch each day. Plus this also makes it easy to throw meals into the freezer if you don't get to eat them during the week.

  • Pre-prep and freeze your protein smoothie ingredients. Wash, trim and freeze your fruit or better yet, buy organic frozen fruit. Then place each days fruit smoothie portions plus your protein powder (I use this yummy pumpkin protein), seeds, greens, and any other ingredients you desire into individual jars or BPA-free ziplock baggies to freeze. Each morning you can throw them into the blender, add almond milk, and GO!

  • Pull out the crockpot for no fuss meals. You can make super easy meals overnight or while you are out for the day. Just chop up a bunch of veggies like onion, celery, and potatoes, add your protein of choice and seasonings, then let it cook on low for about 8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours. This will literally save you so much time and result in a delicious tasting meal. Try this easy crockpot beef stew recipe to get started!

  • Use parchment paper to help keep food from sticking to the pan or dish. Sometimes vegetables and meats will stick to pans when cooking and can create a real mess to clean up. Line your pans with parchment paper to prevent sticking and make clean up a breeze. It is also helpful to place parchment paper over the top of dishes, like baked chicken, while cooking to avoid splattering and to help lock in the juices.

Getting the hang of weekly meal prep may take some practice but you will get the hang of it! The first couple times I did meal prep on my own, took hours. I quickly found my groove and was able to get it all done in half the time which ultimately saved me tons of time throughout the week! Feel free to leave me any questions you have in the comments below. Also, if you need more meal prep tips and recipes, don't forget to download my free 7-day meal plan


Learn How to Stop Bloat From Happening

Want to reduce inflammation and lose fat for good? Start by downloading our free guide: 5 Easy Steps to Beating Belly Bloat!

We are Chris and Amber, a husband and wife team dedicated to helping you improve your nutritional and personal fitness habits for a better lifestyle. If you have issues with bloating, inability to lose fat, brain fog, or are in need of a proven nutrition and fitness plan to get you out of a rut, then sign up for our 28-Day Beat Belly Bloat Program today!

 

Amber Hale, Health Coach
 

Disclaimer: I earn a small commission if you use some of the highlighted links to purchase products mentioned in this blog/website. I recommend only products that I would use my own home or that I would recommend to clients. 

Amazon Disclaimer: We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.