Do you know Gillian McKeith? She's a holistic nutritionist and host of BBC's "You are What You Eat." Hit the click above to watch an episode.
She is harsh. She is mean. She is the Hitler of healthy!
My sister Moira told me about her. In one episode she hollered at one of her clients: "You eat like a BIG FAT SLOB MAAAN!" We've been obsessed with her ever since.
A few weeks ago, I grabbed up her "Food Bible" from my local library. Inside, I found a guide on how to use food to cure illness. I bet you can guess the first illness I looked up!!!
Here's what Gillian says about IBS.
"Many people say it is caused by stress. Certainly, stress can cause gastrointestinal spasms, but the main cause is what I call the "body plumbing back up." Your digestive system is shot and your intestines do not work properly... You end up quite depleted nutritionally, as this condition interferes with the absorption of nutrients" (315-316).
None of the books I've read explain IBS as something that can leave you malnourished. I love that Gillian does. This explains why I feel so tired, weak, and dizzy all the time, despite my insanely healthy diet.
Here's what she suggests IBSsers eat and drink:
Veggie juice to boost nutrition
Ginger and Tumeric
Gentian and Slippery Elm
Peppermint, Fennel, Pau d'Arco and Chamomile tea
Foods rich in vitamin B and magnesium
Here's what she suggest IBSsers NOT eat and drink:
Processed foods (duh)
Wheat, dairy, margarine (duh)
Red meat (duh)
Citrus, tomatoes, spicy peppers (duh)
Whatever foods you can't tolerate (duh)
There's lots here that I've never heard of before. There's also lots here that makes no sense.
I mean, C'MON. Look at me. I've been a vegan for over three years. I've been gluten-free for two. And I'm STILL SICK.
Two changes are gonna be made.
First - I'm starting a food diary. A REAL food diary. Twitter obviously doesn't cut it.Second - I'm writing Gillian a letter. I'm going to ask her for help.
It's silly. But I'm doing it anyway. Part of me dreams that she can - and will - help me.
In the search for perfect health, we all have our gurus who we go to for help. We live by their regime. We try to do everything right. We want their cures to work.
Sometimes I wonder if we would do better just listening to ourselves instead.
Who is your healthy guru? Are healthy gurus a good idea? Do they inspire healing? Or do they just make eating more complicated?