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Author Topic: Foods that truly make us feel good  (Read 20715 times)
Jenett
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« Reply #4: February 14, 2011, 01:15:09 pm »

So, here goes - what foods do you eat because they make you feel great? And why do you think that is? I'll add my own next post.

In general, I try really hard to listen to what my body's craving - and then give it the best quality version of that thing I can. (For example, I get good artisan-type chocolate rather than Hershey's: it's satisfying in much smaller amounts, and avoids a lot of the stuff I'd rather not eat anymore, for example. Ditto ice cream, cheese, and much more)

I've been experimenting with food choices for a while: my bloodwork shows that both the thyroid and Vitamin D are now back at useful levels, but I was still having some issues with brainfog and concentration and overall energy that seemed like they could use improvement (and in particular, having focus/concentration before noon...)

There are also a bunch of foods that are considered at best problematic for people with hypothyroidism - notably non-fermented soy (which leaves out almost all meat alternatives, and soybean oil is in a huge number of prepared foods), uncooked brassicas (cabbages, broccoli, etc.) A lot of hypothyroid people say they do better on a low carb or moderately low carb diet, or on a gluten-free diet.

What I've discovered for me is:
- It seems like my best balance point is to eat one grain-based meal a day (pasta, substantial bread, etc.) and otherwise to rely on meat, veggies, and dairy for the bulk of my calories. (I've tried going gluten free for a week, and didn't see huge benefits beyond what I get with the one-meal a day thing, and the one-meal bit is so much more flexible I'd like to stay there if I can.)

- However, if I'm going to hit what I need to make my brain work, I do actually need to take in a fair amount of fat and protein - if I get below a certain number of calories, my brain stops working, and veggies alone just don't do it.

(As a side: I really love Kate Harding's take on numbers of calories: http://kateharding.net/2008/07/17/what-if-they-were-right-about-calories/ - she points out that it's not like your body says "Ok, X many fewer today, we'll split that up evenly around the body." It's more complicated than that.)

- And the more I can eat the stuff often called "nourishing foods" (per Sally Fallon, and Weston A. Price, and many others) - basically, the stuff our grandparents would have eaten, rather than highly processed stuff - the better off I am.  

That means everything from homemade chicken stock (easy, in a slow cooker, it turns out!) to exploring things like foods with probiotic bacteria (sauerkraut turns out to be lovely. Who knew?) to eggs (scrambled eggs in the morning with a little cheese turn out to be a great breakfast for me) I do buy some processed stuff for when I'm too tired/busy to think about cooking, but mostly from Trader Joe's, who are good about their labeling and who generally avoid unnecessary processing.

- I've also been exploring some alternative oils - coconut oil is supposed to be particularly good for hypothyroid due to the specific structure of the fats, and I definitely feel like I have more energy when I use it. (I cook my eggs in it, add a spoonful to soups when it makes sense to do so, and cook popcorn in it. It doesn't have a very strong taste.) Otherwise, I use olive oil and butter, and do my utmost to avoid canola oil, soybean oil, and so on.

Yesterday, I was tired and not up for a lot of cooking, so there was a lot of canned soup (from an organic soup maker) in my life. Today, I have sauerkraut and kielbasa (from a local farm) in the crockpot, and I had some more sauerkraut for lunch, and am trying to decide what else to eat. (Could be tuna salad and crackers, could be soup. Tuna sounds good.)
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