Food Poisoning , Fasting and Wake Up Call For Change

Intermittent Fasting On Hold Due to Food Poisoning

My intermittent fasting has been put on hold. I am recovering from a bout of food poisoning so I have been out of commission since Sunday.

Today, Friday is the first day where I’m almost feeling close to my normal, healthy self. I even managed to get in an hour of yoga.

Photo of person lying down on a bluish-gray sofa with a blue blanket over their head

But, as an optimist, I like to look for silver linings and the silver lining in this case is; my food poisoning was a wake up call to eliminate certain foods from my diet that just weren’t serving my body well.

Let me explain. I woke up at 3 am, Monday morning with what I thought was the worst case of Gerd(acid reflux, heartburn). My stomach was cramping, bloated and burning. I felt nauseous, and my burping (which was loud, uncontrolled and frequent) would have made Homer Simpson proud.

Photo of person holding stomach as though it is hurting

Each time I had a burping episode, I could taste the food I had eaten that night. I wasn’t aware at the time I had food poisoning. I thought I was just having a bad case of Gerd, because before this episode, I started having reflux after eating certain foods. So I went online(because I just couldn’t fall back to sleep) and looked up “foods that irritate acid reflux”. As I read through the list, recognizing several of the foods I regularly eat, I started panicking that this might become the new norm for me if I don’t remove these foods from my diet.

Photo of a tablet device opened to a Google search bar

As many of you know, I had started an intermittent fasting diet about 5 weeks ago. In addition to fasting, I had already eliminated many foods from my diet. I had stopped snacking in between meals and after dinner; and I eliminated sugar from my diet. I also cut out most processed foods and ate predominantly whole, plant-based foods.

So, as I was reading through the acid reflux food list and panicking about what my future holds if I continue eating these foods, I decided to eliminate those foods from my diet. And frankly if I had not already been doing the intermittent fasting, I think the decision might not have happened, at least not so quickly and easily.

Fasting teaches you self control, focus and discipline. My mind and body were already prepared for the changes, I just had to commit to the decision.

So, here is a list of the foods I chose to eliminate from my diet:

1. Chocolate- you know how I love making mochas in the morning? Well bye bye mochas.

Coffee mug with “Life Is Good” text and graphic of red and white light house with mocha in the mug

2. Coffee – I am a coffaholic. Have been for most of my adult life; but lately coffee has not been kind to me…so sadly I had to break up with it.

Photo of author wearing sunglasses holding a paper coffee cup with Italian text that says “Musei Vaticani”

3. Wine – especially red wine, which of course is my favorite.

Photo of a bottle of Shiraz Red wine and a glass wine glass with red wine it it

4. Tea – I tend to drink more tea iced or room temperature in the warmer seasons…I guess i will be drinking more water.

I understand how difficult it is to give up old habits. There is a part of me that feels sad about giving up coffee and wine. Both are big social foods and making coffee for me has also been ritualistic. I will just have to stick with water or green tea matcha when I meet up with my friends at a cafe and I can always grab a beer instead of wine if I want a drink.

So, although it sucked that I got food poisoning (from a bad pineapple believe or not), It was a wake up call that I needed to make more adjustments to my diet in order to live the healthiest version of me. Fasting and food poisoning have also reminded me to pay close attention to what is going on with my body and follow its cues. It will often tell me what works or doesn’t work.

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