It's become time to pull my head out of the sand pile I've had it in for about the last year. Time to say 'OK, enough is enough' and slap myself in the face for ignoring it for so long.
Elijah (6) in particular has a few issues (concentration, behaviour, constipation, eczema) that when added up, all seem to be high on the list if symptoms of food allergies/intolerances or reactions to additives and preservatives that appear in so many foods these days. Stuff we don't even realise are there. Stuff that we don't realise have such an adverse effect on our kids (and us!). But not even just Eli, I noticed when reading these lists of symptoms, that Jai (11) also displays a lot of them too - irratibility, sleeplessness for example. And Lani suffers from eczema too, so does DH, so really yes, its time.
Time to have a hard look at the rubbish that's in the food I'm feeding my family. The additives, the preservatives, the colours, the flavours. Not natural. At all. And really, just down right dangerous. As a loving Mum called to love, cherish, grow and nurture my family, how can I continue to feed them with such rubbish - especially when I now see how much damage it can do.
Sure, we may not see miracles by taking out the additives. We might not see every issue 'cured' as such, but I can bet that there will be a vast difference, and that's when we can start looking at other options for ailments that remain. After knowing that my family are eating real and good foods.
So this week, we are embarking on The Failsafe Diet, which is very much the same as The Elimination Diet. It has been around for years, so there's HEAPS of recipe ideas online and lots of other families sharing on blogs etc. So I think we'll be OK! Just have to get my head around what we can and can't have (which is a lot!)
The idea is to stick strictly to the base diet for at least a month to get the nasties out of our systems, then we can hopefully start testing out various things (we'll keep the additives and preservatives away for good though!) to see if we react to individual things. This will particularly be the salicylates (natural preservatives) which by avoiding them we cut out a LOT of fruit and vegies as these all have natural chemicals in them! It will be good to be able to add some variety in our fruit and vegies and herbs and spices back again. So I hope we can get to that!!
I have spent the last couple of weeks shopping with my additive lists (to avoid) and trying to get my head around what we can eat and collecting a few meal ideas. We are starting this week, so we've been pretty good so far. I still have a few things in the house that are higher on the salicylate list, that we're eating in very limited amounts to get rid of (apples for eg) and we'll be testing out all the meals this week, lunchbox ideas, doing some baking etc to get ready for complete elimination next week for school. I'll need to send along some additive-free cakes for classroom freezers and notes to the teachers too to make sure they don't have anything they shouldn't! I think that will be the hard part - keeping the diet up when they are not with me! But we'll get there.
I don't know if it has anything to do with cutting additives out this week already, but their concentration seems to be better this week already! They played Lego ALL DAY yesterday almost!
Anyway, I will share some recipes and such here and there as we go. Menu plans, ideas etc. Its going to be hard, but we'll get there.
And my kids and family's health and well-being are WELL worth it.