Adding Coconut Oil to Your Wheat-Free Diet

Hey Wheatbeaters!

I’d like to share one of my little secrets for warding off mid-day hunger pangs.

It’s coconut oil.

A lot of people are resistant to adding something so high in fat to their diet, thinking that it will make them gain a ton of weight. I’ll admit—I was hesitant at first. But the thing is I just replaced my regular cooking oil (olive oil) with it so I don’t actually take in any extra calories per day. Coconut oil is healthy in so many ways! I find that two tablespoons per day (which is about 200 calories) WILL make you lose weight by making you feel full. 

To fit it into my current wheat-free diet, I changed up my breakfast plans a bit. Protein is absolutely essential to making me feel full and stopping me from gorging on carbs throughout the day. Seriously, if I haven’t had protein in the morning I will just wander aimlessly around the kitchen for an hour until I cave and eat bread. Previously, I have had two eggs and a rice cake with peanut butter for breakfast (with coffee, of course).
Now I start my day with the following:

  • a bowl of oatmeal (make sure the bag says gluten-free)
  • 1 tablespoon hemp hearts (nutty and delicious and keep you, erm, “regular”)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 2 teaspoons chia seeds
  • a splash of milk if it is too thick
  • 1/2 of a small banana diced (I highly recommend adding this because it makes it taste one zillion times better. One zillion.)

So just make your oatmeal and put all this healthy crap in it and voila! Honestly, it keeps me full beyond lunch a lot of the time. PLUS coconut oil has all these great qualities:

  • aids in digestion
  • makes your hair all shiny and stuff
  • prevents premature skin aging (also, reduced my red marks from acne SIGNIFICANTLY)
  • promotes immune system health
  • reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s Disease (never hurts to start early!)
  • increases weight loss

There are a million more things that could be added to that list but those are some of the biggies. So I guess my point is that you should add coconut oil to your diet, stop using the other oils, and maybe even comment on this post about how that works for you! I love hearing back from everyone about their progress 🙂

PS: You can add a bit to your dog’s food and his coat will get shinier. Gentle Ben likes it!

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Progress Report – Almost 2 weeks in!

Wow, I can’t believe I have not eaten any wheat in almost two weeks!  My life used to revolve around wheat-eating; it was the sun and I was just a planet spinning around it.  I can’t express how much better I feel since giving up wheat.  I definitely went through a period of withdrawals for the first 3-4 days, I must admit.  I would get these lightning quick chills that pulsed through my entire body out of nowhere.  Thankfully, those went away and now I can just sit back and not think about wheat.

Something interesting I’ve noticed is that I actually enjoy eating a lot more than I did before.  I used to look through the fridge and, despite having a ton of food, I would veto practically everything and crave something specific like a pot pie or pasta. Now when I open the fridge door I just pull out mixed greens, chicken, rice, etc., and put a meal together almost intuitively.  Salad is more delicious when you aren’t lusting over tortellini.

So far my allergies have improved, but aren’t entirely gone.  I’ll take the improvement, gladly.  I now weigh 122.8 lbs — 7.2 lbs less than my starting weight.

I still have loads of energy and feel better than I ever have before.  I should mention that while cutting out wheat is the main idea, lowering your intake of starches and sugar is also important.  So if you give up bread and switch to corn-based tortillas, you probably won’t see a ton of results because starches still spike your blood sugar. I also find it easier to avoid sugar, the less I eat it at all. When I’m feeling like I need a treat, I eat a couple squares of dark 85% cacao chocolate and that usually solves my problem.

Overall, so far so good.  I’m still not seeing a ton of results in regards to my body changing, but I figure that will come later.  The fact that I am losing weight, eating more, and not really exercising is pretty remarkable on it’s own.

That being said, my dog is thinking that I should put all this extra energy to good use and take him for a nice run!
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Wheat-Free for 9 Days and Feeling SO GOOD!

Hey everyone! Here is my update after being wheat-free for nine days.

So far it hasn’t really been that hard to give up the wheat. It’s like the the less you eat it, the less you miss it.  The only time I feel real temptation is when my pastry chef roommate brings home my favourite cupcakes (Coconut Cream Cheese!).  I continue to have bounds of energy and just feel better overall.  I enjoy getting up and starting my day, taking my dog to the park, tidying the house, reading, and walking into town and perusing the local markets now.

Yesterday I woke up with almost no allergy symptoms, which is pretty remarkable.  Today, once again, very minimal allergy symptoms.  On a normal day, I will literally blow my nose all the way through a box of tissues in 12 hours.  People will ask me if I’m sick, which is embarrassing, and I just feel gross and exhausted.  For the past two days I have only had the sniffs a couple times which is GREAT!

I should also mention that I stopped drinking milk, which could be helping my allergies. I didn’t drink a ton of milk before, but I did have a bowl of cereal pretty much every day.  And since i can’t eat my beloved Vector cereal anymore, I gave up milk too.  So every morning when I have my cup of coffee, I use coconut milk instead, which is absolutely delicious and healthy for you too!

On another note…. and I have no idea how this is possible… I’ve somehow lost 7 lbs in 9 days. I have been weighing in daily since I started and went from 130 – 129.4 – 128.6 – 127.6 – 126.4 – 126 – 125.8 – 125 – 123!

I have not weighed 123 lbs since high school! To recap, I’m a 23yo female, 5’7″ inches, overall slender. So dropping 7 lbs from my relatively small frame is astounding!  I haven’t seen much change physically, and here is what I think is happening: Wheat addiction causes a buildup of visceral fat, also known as intra-abdominal fat, which is fat that surrounds your internal organs.  It’s really hard to lose, compared to subcutaneous fat which lies on the surface.  So even though I’m a healthy weight overall, I may have a buildup of visceral fat that I just can’t see.

Happy with how it’s going so far!

Goodbye, Bagels. It’s been swell.

I never in a million years would have predicted that I would end my long-standing love affair with wheat.  Simply put, I love wheat.  I actually have sentimental feelings towards bagels.  If I open up the cupboard above the microwave and there is a bag of bagels in there, I get this warm, happy feeling of relief.  Everything will be okay.  Bagels are here.

I was the typical carb-obsessed wheat-eater.  A typical day’s meal plan would go something like this:

Breakfast

  • Big bowl of Vector cereal
  • A bagel with cream cheese

Lunch

  • Sandwich on whole wheat bread or a wrap
  • A granola bar
  • An apple

Dinner

  • Pasta with meat sauce, a pot pie, a wrap, or pizza
  • Probably a cupcake because my roommate is a baker

As you can see, I was neither the healthiest or least healthy eater.  The thing is, I ate mostly wheat products.  I never really thought this was a problem until I read the book, “Wheat Belly,” however.  Let me preface this by saying that I am not fat by any means. I am 5’7″, 130lbs, and fairly slender (and female, if that wasn’t already obvious). I am incredibly, almost impressively, inactive.  I am perpetually sitting down. I take very short walks each day because my dog forces me, and I don’t go to the gym. The fact that I am not fat is actually quite astounding, and infuriating, to some people.

So I read this book because my mother forced me to and it was actually pretty interesting. Its overall point was that wheat is no longer what it once was; it’s unnecessary, sprayed with chemicals, and actually unhealthy.  The author boasts that he has cured all kinds of illnesses and ailments by simply telling his patients to cut out wheat altogether.  For me, cutting out wheat was on par with cutting off a limb.  It would be like if someone chopped off your hands and said, “Now, go mow the lawn.” You have to get pretty creative and completely relearn how to do something that was once pretty straight-forward.

You may be wondering why I gave up wheat, and I have a few reasons behind it:

  1. I have horrendous allergies — to everything.  Dust, dogs, cats, grass, trees, flowers, perfume, smoke, nuts… you get the picture.  Luckily, none of these are life-threatening , except for the fact that they are so brutal they make me want to kill people.
  2. My complexion is garbage.  I’ve had relatively decent skin over the years but battled acne on and off since I was 13 (now 23).  Last year though, for whatever reason, my skin exploded with acne and shit just got real.  I mean, the kind of acne you see on someone walking down the street and you actually feel bad for them. I was put on Accutane, which thankfully is working miracles, but I don’t want to just break out again after I stop taking it. Apparently, wheat can cause acne (bastard!).
  3. I have some visceral fat I wouldn’t mind ridding myself of.  I am slender, but I have this layer of fat around my lower “abs” and obliques that is practically angling for squatters’ rights.  Bikini season is coming… I’m painfully aware of it.

I cut wheat 100% out of my diet a week ago exactly.  If you’ll take a gander at my eating habits prior to last week, you’ll probably wonder what the hell I’m eating.  I actually find this to be a relatively easy diet because it cuts out most unhealthy foods, forces you to eat veggies, and has actually turned me into a bit of a chef!  Without the convenience of wheat-based foods like granola bars, frozen pizzas, pot pies, and pasta, I actually have to PLAN my meals and think about what to eat rather than mindlessly grab something out of the cupboard.  I make different salads, oat muffins, chicken, fish, etc. and it’s way more enjoyable than the garbage I ate before.

Here’s what I’ve noticed: I have EXPONENTIALLY MORE ENERGY.  I used to be a professional sitter-downer. I could lie around doing nothing all day and never got the urge to do anything. If I accomplished ONE task, maybe do a load of laundry, I considered it a successful day.  Now, I do a million different things every day.  I clean constantly, which is completely out of character (just ask my roommates).  I reorganized my entire room, cleaned the fish bowl, cleaned the bathroom, bought a new duvet cover, went to the dog park, grocery shopped, etc., etc., because I felt like DOING SOMETHING.  I have never felt more capable of doing things.

Another weird thing, my sense of direction has improved markedly. I know lots of people say they are “the worst at directions,” but those people usually meet me and can’t believe how bad I am.  I have lived in the same city for about 20 years and I have never been able to navigate it, even with numbered streets.  I was driving my roommates across town two days ago and they were both completely stunned that I wasn’t constantly asking where to turn or what direction to go in.  I didn’t even realize it until they said it, but I actually understood how to get where I was going.  It was very liberating.

Thus far I’ve dropped 1.6 lbs in 7 days, now weighing in at 128.4 lbs.  Honestly, I can’t tell the difference, but who cares.  Makes me feel successful.

I’ve included a photo of a hangover sandwich my roommate and I enjoyed a couple weeks ago.  It consisted of bread, cheese whiz, three hot dogs, and Singles cheese. You can’t make this stuff up.

Oh, you will be missed.