Thankfully, I woke up feeling much better today.  I also realized that the week is almost over…

The Fast Metabolism Diet (vegan version) has been my plan for the last 6 weeks.  I’ve accomplished what I hoped in terms of re-establishing healthy patterns and I lost a little weight.  It’s time to decide what to do next.

Things I’ve  loved about FMD:

  • sprouted bread with almond butter… this is a treat I look forward to every week and because it is an approved part in a very specific portion size, I have done well with it; in fact I guess I could have had it in the evenings of Phase 3 too.. as the optional starch and fat, but I didn’t.  It felt like a treat and I felt in control unlike my sometimes out-of-control passion for natural peanut butter.
  • Fruit… I have eaten MUCH more fruit than I usually would and I have really enjoyed this change; I love having sorbet especially 🙂
  • portions: the 1/2 cup of beans is plenty and the 2 cups of vegetables is appropriate.  The 1/2 cup of dry oats is fine, although sometimes 1 cup of cooked rice  feels like a lot; in general having portions to go by helps me create meals that are balanced
  • water/tea: the requirement has encouraged me to strive harder to drink more and most days I succeed; I feel much better for it and get to enjoy lots of delicious cups of herbal teas as well
  • The encouragement to do yoga and stress busting activities every weekend
  • The “excuse” it gives me for standing up to food peer pressure
  • The acknowledgement that eating should be a pleasure

Things I haven’t loved about FMD:

  • eating 1/2 hour after waking
  • eating when I’m not hungry (sometimes too early, too often, or too much)
  • Phase 2 with only soy and green veggies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • aerobics only 2 days per week… really prefer this at least 5 days
  • the lists… figuring out if a certain food is ok on a certain day… even after 6 weeks!
  • the exclusion of some little foods in all 3 phases: tomatillos, sun dried tomatoes, the occasional date or raisin, an occasional cup of decaf coffee, split pea soup…
  • the unknowns… foods that are not on the lists but then you stumble across one of her blog posts or a post on the FB page where she says it is ok; I wish she had a page on her web site where approved foods had been added to a master list… little things like knowing about capers, nutritional yeast, konjac noodles would have been so much easier
  • Placing all my faith in the magic combo of foods and timing rather than in my own ability to choose healthy foods in appropriate portions
  • Not being able to use my recipes easily
  • shaping my schedule around my dietary needs rather than planning my meals & snacks  around my schedule

Things I feel confused about

  • the exclusion of some big foods in all phases: corn: I never felt like I ate too much corn but did enjoy an occasional cob, a sprinkle of frozen kernels in some of my recipes, and the now and then corn tortilla, as well as the once a year bean tamales; is corn really so bad?
  • the exclusion of some big foods in all phases: wheat: The rice pasta is fine but more expensive; not sure I really think wheat is an issue; love the sprouted bread; would occasionally like to bake something myself with whole wheat flour; it’s good to be limited on things like crackers and french bread because I often over did it so I do see the addictive role of processed wheat
  • the exclusion of some big foods in all phases:  white potatoes: I don’t see potatoes as evil and they can be very filling, inexpensive, and delicious; I do think that if my portion of potatoes is too big I eat less green vegetables; I feel like potatoes could have a role in my diet if the portions and frequency were controlled
  • the weekly “Fat” days: I enjoy these 3 days in terms of being able to have certain foods like avocado, nut butters, nuts and seeds, tahini, and the rare splash of oil; I also liked that it was limited to 3 days because I looked forward to it, but didn’t have that high level of fat in every day; however; I did not like the feeling of fullness that went along with the 3 meals plus snacks (due to the richness/heaviness) in Phase 3; I did not desire fat so often in a day and could be content with having the fat just a couple times in the day
  • alcohol: I really missed my evening cocktail time at first but have adapted to this now; I still sit down with my husband and have a seltzer and share the time; I wonder if I allow myself alcohol if it would quickly become a daily treat again or if I could limit it to 2-3 days per week
  • cornstarch… I didn’t really give arrowroot a chance as a thickener because I would need to buy it so I just didn’t bother to thicken anything; since I was never really sold on the idea of corn being evil I’m not sure I see cornstarch as a problem either
  • blogging: I started this blog because I couldn’t find a vegan blog about this diet and would have loved hearing about that perspective before committing myself to it; I enjoy the daily “thinking out loud” but it also takes a lot of time and so far I’m not sure if anyone is really getting anything out of it anyhow; if I discontinue the designed plan then is there a point to continuing the blog?
  • does the inclusion of 2 really hard days (Phase 2) make me more appreciative of the foods on the other Phases?
  • Would I enjoy the fruits of Phase 1 less if I had them every day? Are they more special since they are limited?
  • Bananas and Grapes: I think Pomroy is right that the body processes the sugar in these fruits differently, but do they need to be excluded completely?

I have thought about my decision all week long; I’ve really struggled with it.  Then I found a blog of a woman who followed FMD for only 1 1/2 weeks before she wrote this.  Her words felt right to me…She said, “I suddenly realized I had stepped into the diet trap. I was excluding perfectly healthy whole foods–not because I have an allergy or real need to avoid certain foods–but because some book guru said to. I was eating a formula instead of listening to my body and fueling my energy.” She defined the diet trap as “Obsessing about what to eat, when, as if there’s some magical formula that will help me transform my life.”  Yes… I had already felt this same thing when I wrote the lists above.  I said I didn’t like placing all my faith in the magic combo of foods and timing rather than in my own ability to choose healthy foods in appropriate portions.

I also liked that she talked about what she had learned and gained from her experience.  I too feel grateful for what I DID gain from the FMD.  I can appreciate the experience and also be ready to move on. There are some things I hope to continue and other things I’m glad to let go of.  It took me a while, but I’ve finally decided… I’m moving on to my own plan now.

Here’s what I had today:

7:30 Hot tea

8:00 sprouted bread with almond butter and a smoothie made of blueberries, baby spinach, cashew milk, ice, and cocoa

11:00 Hummus and celery

1:00 Red beans mixed with seasoning blend of celery, onions, & bell peppers + diced tomatoes + red pepper flakes + guacamole

4:00 salad of fresh tomatoes and basil with salt & pepper and some pine nuts

7:30 Dinner Out at Buffet: Kale & Spinach salad with tahini dressing, Indian spiced Vegetables, Veggie Chili (3 kinds of beans), Asian noodle salad with carrots and sesame oil, a few sips of unsweetened kombucha

9:00 Hot Tea


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