I've been reading this site for about 3 months and finally I decided to sign up. You all have already help me a lot while I was looking for information about this lifestyle: each time I had a question, I found the answer here or on youtube (through your videos). I finally got Dr Graham's book, read it and start whit my hcrv journey.
I would like to tell you something about myself, maybe because I've read so much about some of you, that I want to share my story too (this is the only rhyme, I swear XD).
Well, like a lot of people in Western Countries, I used to be a really ill and sad person.
I remember me as a child being happy, healthy and fit (I was born in Venezuela and had a completely different lifestyle there) and than change country (moved to Italy) and life. I remember all my Italian family worried about my weight, 'cause for Italian's standard I was too thin. Dairy and pasta were introduced in my diet, and the amount of meat I ate increased. I put on weight (not overweight, just some "healthy" pounds) and my vitality slowly went down. I grew up very fast and at 10 I look like a young woman (I'm 22 know and in the latst 12 years haven't changed much, phisically). I think it was at that moment that I began to hate myself.
Left often alone at home, I started to eat (because of loneliness, I guess) and put on some extra pound. The family that was so worried about my "underweight" began to pressure me about my "overweight". Since that time, I'm struggleing with my body. I've starved myself for months and than binged and saw my weight going down and up continuously. I started to have insomnia problems which brought me to depression. I started to drink coffee in a very unhealthy amount, to smoke and to drink alcohol. I didn't gave a **** about my life so I've done terrible and unhealthy things to my body (and my soul). The only thing I haven't done is taking drugs (the illegal ones) because I hadn't the opportunity.
I've taken drugs for depression and they worse the situation. I've been meeting a psychologist for about two years and it helped a little. I had to left highschool because I couldn't go out of my house, I had panic attacks in public. Not to have to worry about school helped a little too. When I saw that things weren't so dark, I started to care a little more about myself. But things weren't fine. I had a terrible boyfriend at that time (only 3 years ago, but seems a lot to me) that never let me sleep (because he was so jealous he called me at every time of the day and the night) and who tryed to control my life. He persuaded me to eat more meat (I've never like the taste of meat, so, if I could choice I usually not ate it) and I put on a lot of weight (from 150 pounds to 176). Not to be able to sleep (before I met it, I usually slept 4-6 hours per night, after I slept 2-3 and sometime I didn't go to sleep at all) my mood was worst than ever.
It was when I broke with him (I couldn't stand him any more) that I really started living.
I had terrible chronic gastritis that made me take a lot of drugs. My doctor told me I had to give up coffee, chocolate and hot pepper and (although I used to drink 5 cup of coffee) I did it, because the pain was unbearable. Than I started to sleep more, so my mood started to be a little better. I was studying in a culinary accademy, so my weight didn't go down before I graduated. Than (at the beginning of 2011) became a vegetarian, because I've read in a book that a vegetarian diet could help in weightloss. I also increased the amount of fruit and salad in my diet, so I started losing a little weight. Then, in July, I cut dairy 'cause I discovered I'm allergic to them, but my doctor said me I should still eat a little cheese here and then. I lost some more weight and in September I was 138 pounds. I felt better and was happier, slept well, not have gastritis any more and had less breath troubles (I used to have asthma, now I don't have it any more because it was caused by dairy allergy -and none of the doctors I've seen has told me). I did'nt exercised but my job (pastry chef) was quite hard.
My ethic choice came later. I bought a Dalai Lama's book and I was really fascinated when I read about buddhism's view of compassion and love for all creatures. It moved me. I started to care about my clothes and make up (not buy anything that cames from animals pain/death) and try to get rid of things I don't need. For a while I still ate eggs and a little dairy in the illusion (like most western people) that they didn't hurt anyone. When I informed myself about dairy and eggs factory, I simply stopped eating that stuff. It wasn't for health, it was ethics. But, as some people are worried about vegan diet, I spent hours searching informations about nutrition (and weightloss too, as I'm again 150 pounds). That's how I “found” Freelee.
So I changed my vegan diet into an high-carb low-fat cooked vegan diet. Have made some mistakes (and still making), because at the beginning I was terribly undereating (less then 1000 calories a day) and then I binged, so I lost weight and then put it on again (sounds familiar...).
The last two weeks were almost raw for me, ate cooked stuff only if I hadn't ripe fruit, but, as I felt terribly the times I ate cooked stuff, I'm now on my third day completely raw. I feel fantastic, 'cause in the last 17 days I've been eating more than ever and I've began to exercise too. I do a 1h section of yoga every day and I ride my bike for 30 minutes every day. I know it's not that much, but for me (always being extremely lazy) it's really a lot. Thanks to DR I drink 3 liters of water now (I used to drink 1) and I'm trying to overcome my “phobia of bugs” (I don't know how do you call it in English... I'm afraid of bugs, but I'm trying not to be so sensitive about it). I love laying in the sun and walk in nature.
I'm another person, the latest year have brought a lot of changes in my life (especially connected whit the diet) and I'm entusiastic about it.
I'm now looking for change job, cause being a pastry chef is no more in line with my ethics nor my diet (by the way, I'm not working at the moment). I thing I'll go back to languages highschool and finished it (I just have one year to do) and then... travel and travel and travel :)
I'm optimistic about this new path (811 lifestyle) and I know I will succeed. In the last year I gave up smoking and drinking, coffee, drugs, meat, dairy, eggs, chocolate, salt, sugar and spices so I think I can give up cooked stuff too. I don't have cravings if I eat lot of fruit in the morning so it's not that much difficult. I need to increase the amount of fruit (I'm eating 2000 calories at the moment), but I'm slowly doing it. My family and friends don't support my choice, but I guess I can face them, maybe with a little help from you ;)
I apologize, I know I've written really a lot, but I've read so much here and I have so much to tell :)
I also apologize if I've made some mistakes, English is my third language so I'm not as fluent as I wish.
I wanna thank you all, but special thanks to Freelee, Durianrider, Chris Randal and Megan Elizabeth, who have helped me with all their videos :)
I hug you all
Cindy - good of you to share so much. You have such a great life to look forward to now that you've made these changes. Best of luck to you!
Very beautiful story!
I can relate to you about feeling happy and exercising on this diet. I never liked to do any sports. Now I love it, and I understand that I have too little energy for exercising because ate very little of carbs. My mood swings were horrible before my fruity diet. I was constantly tired and in a bad mood. I didn't take any drugs but I would have a cup of coffee sometimes.
I've been on this diet for about 5 month and I feel like completely different person from a day one!
Way to go, girl!
I wish you the of luck on your journey!
Thank you both :)