My entire adult life I suffered from bloating, cramps and pains in my stomach. However I had no idea what caused this and no one could diagnose it. Also since about the age of 16 I have suffered from night terrors. I usually have no recollection of this occurring unless someone wakes me up so usually I am told from housemates, family or partners. It is very embarrassing and frightening as I have no control over this occurring.
I thought I was a fairly fit and healthy person, I taught group exercise, train 5+ days a week and get outdoors as much as possible. I never drank soft drinks and didn’t eat a lot of lollies and cakes however something was just not right, why was I always feeling tired and bloated?
After witnessing my mother go through breast cancer, chemo, double mastectomy and reconstruction together with my dad having numerous heart attack scares and trips to the hospital due to a blocked artery in his heart I thought the time had come to take control of what I can. I decided that I was going to take sugar out of my diet. I had done this in the past but only to the point of sugary things, I still consumed packet and bottled sauces, liquid breakfast drinks and low-fat packaged items which I thought were ‘ok’.
After doing a lot of my own research and with the help of inspirational authors, cooks and nutritionists such as Teresa Cutter, Lola Berry and Sara Wilson, I became inspired to do more.
For the past 10 months I have cut out all refined sugars and preservatives and try to eat as much whole foods as possible. I understand that eating small amounts of sugar is ok but, just like Damon, my body is unaware of how much is enough and the only way I realised I could change my health for good was to eliminate it entirely.
I now hardly ever suffer from bloating and I can’t remember the last time I had cramping and pains in the stomach but the really ‘spooky’ and amazing thing is that after talking to a colleague about her child’s night terrors I realised my partner hadn’t complained to me about waking him up with a blood curdling scream for a while. After asking when he thought the last time i had a night terror was he said it was around the time I started to change my diet (at that time it had been 7 months). I had spent hours with numerous experts trying to help me with my night terrors and tried lots of different methods and changes in my behaviours but not one expert advised me to change my diet. So basically by cutting out refined sugar and harmful preservatives I have unintentionally cured myself from something that no other expert could!
I believe the best way to inspire is to lead by example, and through my journey I helped many friends, work colleagues and family members to become more aware of what they are eating and what is actually hiding in the foods they eat.