Hi guys! I haven't been on here in quite a while, and I know there are plenty of new people here... most of which are probably either just starting out, or not sure if they want to give it a try yet. And some of you may even be struggling! So, I thought I'd share my story so that everyone can see that this lifestyle really is AMAZING!! You just have to have a little faith in the guidelines, and know that they are there for a reason. Like, there is a reason you shouldn't starve yourself, for example!! ;) Also, I'll warn you that this is a little long.
First off, a little background on how I eat. I started this journey in February of 2012. I do, and have had, financial issues all throughout this time. And so, sometimes for money reasons, and sometimes for what I perceived as "easier," I did fall off the wagon a few times. (Meaning eating cooked, processed, fatty junk.. But always stayed vegan) Totally not worth it at all! I'm not doing that again, for any reason. Anyways, right now, I still have a money problem and so I do have cooked potatoes as a back up. (No fat, no salt) These do not cause me any problems, but it still does not compare to 100% raw. Now on to me. :)
I am a 24 year old female, who came from a background of eating SAD. Meaning, lots of fast food, processed food, fatty garbage and junk foods. I never had a weight problem, but I had other problems from this. I am also Autistic, and I have a lot of the problems that commonly come along with that. I'm trying to think of the easiest way to put all of this together... so I'll just make a list of problems that I had before 811, and how this lifestyle has helped.
Autism - No, this lifestyle will not cure Autism. At least, not in my experience. And I didn't come here for that, anyways. If I have had any improvements with Autism itself, they are small.. but I'm okay with that, considering all of the other benefits I've gotten. :)
Sensory processing problems - My sensory processing is still a little out of whack. It's not where it should be. However, I have had some very noticeable improvements! I am personally affected by it through Touch, Taste, Vestibular, Vision, and sometimes Hearing (on bad days). My vision is still very sensitive to light and movement, but there has been a small improvement there. Vestibular issues have improved a little, and do not happen as often. Hearing issues also do not happen as often. I don't know about taste, since I'm not eating anything I don't like on this lifestyle anyways. :) But the biggest improvement has been touch. I used to have days where I swear I could feel every single skin cell, and every single little hair on my body.. and it was SO uncomfortable. I would even get very upset and irritable if I got sweaty. And sometimes, people touching me either really hurt, or really irritated me. I have noticed that eating anything that really messes with my digestion will cause me to have serious touch sensitivity for at least an hour after eating it, to the point where I will not want to move and if you touch me I'll get very irritable and shove you away. Imagine being covered in syrup and oil, and having sandpaper rubbing across your skin everywhere at the same time! But, eating 811... none of this happens. I always feel GREAT after I eat, like I am ready to take on the world! :) As I said, I do still have some sensory problems... they are not all gone. But they are SOO much easier to deal with, I can't even describe it!
Digestion problems! - This was a biggie. I think for most of my life, I probably had a bowel movement about once a week. And I had been told that's okay!! (????) As you can imagine, this meant I always looked really bloated and it was very uncomfortable. It also meant constipation and hemorrhoids. Now though, I have regular bowel movements, no constipation and no gross bloating. That in itself was pretty amazing for me.
Depression - I used to have all kinds of depression issues, and I was on medications for it for a little while in my teens. I got tired of all of the side effects, so I got off of them... but I still had problems with getting depressed easily and frequently. Now, however, I find it nearly impossible to get depressed. And on the rare occasion that I do, it's linked to something that happened and goes away pretty fast. Other than that, I'm generally in a good mood all of the time. :) Yay!
Anxiety - This one has not completely gone away like the depression... but has improved a huge deal!!
Skin problems, like acne and eczema - As long as I leave out fats, salt, and stay hydrated... my skin is pretty clear!! It's clearing up *again* right now after eating some fatty stuff about three weeks ago or so (boo) but, I have no new breakouts right now and haven't had any since the last time I ate something fatty. My eczema is still being a little stubborn, but it is very slowly going away.. where I did have 4 small patches on my face, I now only have one small patch that is fighting to stay there, but is almost gone!! (The eczema has been the slowest problem to clear up... I had those four patches of it before going 811, so it has taken me a little over a year to get this far with it. But, it IS definitely going away, and the three spots that have healed have not come back, whereas they would have before)
Last but not least, the unexplainable one. (Which I just discovered could possibly be explained by Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (which can also be co morbid with Autism sometimes), but I'm not entirely sure on that.) I used to get very frequent and sometimes extremely painful stiffness in my neck ever since I was about 4 or 5 years old. I got used to getting at least a mild stiffness there every day, which could be caused by anything. Some days even turning my head to look at something would cause one. And at least once or twice, I remember having one SO bad that I could not even get out of bed, because I couldn't move without being in extreme pain. Doctors never had an answer for this. However, since starting 811, I have not had a SINGLE one. I'm not sure what the cause was, but I'm pretty sure it can't be a coincidence!!
Oh yeah. Also, since starting, I have only gotten maybe two small colds... each one only lasting 24hours, and then I feel great afterwards! :)
So yeah... that was long. But I'm sure each of you can probably identify with one of those things, whether it's the skin problems or depression or digestion problems or whatever. I did this by sticking to the guidelines... eating enough calories, no salt, no oils or vinegar or anything, just nice clean fruits all day and veggies at night! (And a few potatoes, only when I really need to) And no, I am NOT fat from eating up to, and sometimes more than, 3,000 calories of fruit a day. :P So my advice is... just jump in! Give it a try and stick to it for a while! You never know what benefits you might get. And some of the benefits might take a while to show (like my eczema clearing up did) but have patience!! You have to give your body the time it needs to heal... and it's not all going to heal at once, or over night... but it will happen. :)