A trashcan full of processed boxed foods stands behind a new grocery bag full of healthy whole foods.

Dealing With Endometriosis Diet Fatigue

If you’re anything like me, at some point, your cupboards will have featured a myriad of gluten-free options, such as vacuum-wrapped bread substitute, or extremely brittle corn-based pasta. You probably have also spent a good amount of money on health stores, trying to find the right kind of macca smoothie mix that doesn’t taste like a slap in the face.

Most endometriosis patients will, at some point, dabble with dietary changes. Many of us suffer from painful bloating, IBS-like symptoms, and other digestive issues. We know that avoiding inflammatory foods can do us a world of good. Yet, going down the route of locating a diet to ease every symptom, can be an exhausting journey. It becomes especially tiresome when we are also trying to maintain a social life. Eating out can feel like completing an obstacle race.

In order not to become entirely deflated by what we eat, or cannot digest painlessly, it is important to keep certain things in mind...

Not every dietary change reaps benefits, and that’s OK

Dairy is the first thing I was told to give up. I was happy to do so, in the hope that it would help me reduce my hormonal acne. However, it had no effect on the state of my skin. The truth is that quitting dairy will only make a difference to those with a sensitivity towards it.1

Additionally, sometimes I am super strict and avoid inflammatory foods such as gluten, and still, my IBS-like symptoms come to life. I scanned the contents on my kitchen, and discovered how some gluten-free alternatives are made up from a mix of flours. In cases like this, it becomes complicated to establish which ingredient to leave out of one's diet.

Talking to a professional can help decide what is good for you

Because every digestive system is particular, and every gut has its own sensitivities, enlisting the help of a professional can be very useful. My dietician helped me identify a sensitivity towards cruciferous vegetables, and introduced me to the low FODMAP diet.2 Because my diet is plant-based, it made a world of difference. I was able to locate what ingredients are good for my gut, and which I should eat sparely.

Don’t give up if nothing seems to work

This is where diet fatigue comes into play. Many times, I’ve given up on all my restrictions and dived face-first into a tub of ice-cream. But the truth is that there is an approach to food that works with my body. It just may need more tweaking, even if to others, it makes little sense.

Going against the current can be a good thing

Just because everyone tells us gluten is the culprit of all our woes, it doesn’t mean it is the absolute truth. I recently discovered that sourdough bread is OK. This type of loaf is made using hours of fermentation and naturally occurring yeast found in the air.3 If I don't overdo the amount I eat, it causes me no digestive issues, and zero bloating.

Dietary changes can provide a great amount of relief for many endometriosis patients. But it takes time, effort, and bucketloads of resilience to carry on eating mindfully when your body takes its time to catch up. It’s OK if you can’t follow your diet down to a t. It’s perfectly fine and healthy to satisfy some cravings. No food should be considered dirty, and eating should be something that gives us pleasure, not stress.

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