And she glowed from the inside out…

When I started operation nutrition my skin was dull, slightly red and it didn’t look as smooth as I’d probably like it to.

Now, 11 weeks on (almost to the day) my skin has a glow about it. The redness is subsiding and it’s smoothing out. My cheeks don’t look so dull and the softness is returning.

At the start of the journey back in September

At the start of the journey back in September

After the 11 weeks!

After the 11 weeks!

It’s amazing what a difference food can make. Just by putting the right nutrients inside your body you can make a real difference to the outside appearance as well.

For example, if you are stuffing your face with fast food, processed food and bad fats, your skin will start to reflect the amount of grease and saturated fats you’re ingesting.

Similarly, foods that are good foryour body weight seem to be equally as good for your skin. So if you consume a lot of fruits, veg, lean meats, nuts, legumes, etc then your skin will reflect this freshness and radiate health! This is what I’m now starting to see!

And, appearance aside, after 11 weeks I’m really starting to FEEL a difference as well. My energy is up, I’m finding that by eating the right types of food for my body I now have more energy to do longer gym workouts or to push myself more which in turn equals fat loss (bonus!!). I am getting less tired during the day, I feel happier in general and my mood swings are not so frequent. Even my periods are becoming more regular and less painful (which any woman knows is a bloody good thing!).

Bloating was a regular thing at the start of the journey

Bloating was a regular thing at the start of the journey

At the 11 week mark, bloating is gone!

At the 11 week mark, bloating is gone!

When I started on this journey with my wonderful nutritionist Jessica Cox I had an idea of what I wanted to get out of it. I really wanted to learn what foods weren’t right for me and I wanted to learn how to replace those foods with ones that were right for me. I have certainly achieved this! I suppose in the back of my mind I wanted to be eating better so I could lose some weight, which I also achieved! Simply feeling better in general was the main purpose of seeing a nutritionist in the first place. This, I have absolutely achieved. The cramps, nausea, fatigue, headaches and bloating have pretty much stopped completely. Of course I’m still adjusting to this lifestyle so there are occasional slip ups which leave me a little bloated but these are few and far between now.

They say new habits are formed and results start to happen after 12 weeks and I think this is pretty spot on! One important thing I’ve learnt throughout this journey is that you need to be patient and you need to be kind to yourself and your body. Health is a journey and there is no quick fix. Sticking it out is the only way to prosper. And getting support, such as I did with Jess, makes the journey soooooo much smoother and soooooo much easier. I could not have made these changes without her!

So for all of those working on their 2014 resolutions, if getting your health back on track pops up, see a nutritionist. You will not regret the investment. And if you give it a bit of time and stay positive and on track, when you get to the 12 week mark you WILL be able to look back and see some stand out changes to your health, your body and your skin!

Check out www.jessicacox.com.au –make health your priority next year!

PS she has some DELICIOUS recipes on the site as well!

Operation Nutrition – the meet!

It was 4.30pm on a Thursday and I found myself wandering up the steps to Jessica’s office space in Brisbane CBD. With a big smile and hello I was in the room and sitting at the desk, anxious to get started. It was D-Day… the initial consultation was here!

So as you all now know I’m embarking on Operation Nutrition to get my health back in order. I shared a bit about my past in the last post and over the course of the next few months I’ll be sharing the journey.

Here is the starting point. In order to give you a real idea about what goes on I am going to be honest and share with you everything… the highs, the lows, the good and the bad. Starting with the pre Operation Nutrition pics…

These pics are post wheat based snack. As you can see there is some serious bloating going on. This is pretty much what I deal with daily. I’m not sure at this stage what exactly causes it, but with Jessica’s help we are going to find out and eliminate that sucker!

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Here is a pic of my bare naked… face! Straight out the shower sans everything (including moisturiser) this is all me.

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Now here are the stats:

Weight – 65kg, Height 161cm (yes I’m short!), body fat 22%.

Just to clarify, I’m not doing this to lose weight; I’m doing it to feel better and to learn how to use food to benefit my body. But in doing this, I’m pretty sure the weight loss and fat loss is going to come as an added perk! So I will keep track of this too!

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Now on to the initial consultation itself!

First let me just say, it was super easy and I felt really comfortable, even when talking about things like bowel movements and flatulence…Jessica covered all the nitty gritty bits and asked plenty of questions, most, I surprisingly couldn’t answer! It’s quite amazing how little notice you take of things like how often you go to the toilet, what foods/meals cause the bloating, whether the symptoms all came at once or over time. It comes back to being mindful and aware and in this day and age, we just aren’t aware of what’s going on in our bodies, or what we are putting in them!

I actually felt a little embarrassed if at any time when we were openly discussing my current diet. Which I thought was reasonably healthy, until I said what I ate out loud. It’s funny, I go about life thinking I’m pretty healthy, I don’t eat white anything, I exercise, I don’t smoke, don’t drink much, don’t take drugs; yet I get sick all the time and I’m constantly tired. You would think alarm bells would have gone off sooner than now! And to think it is all to do with the foods I’m eating.

Even something as simple as weetbix for breakfast could be upsetting the balance, or too much sushi, or those morning cappuccinos! I use skim milk, that’s healthy right? Not when your body hates dairy!

So in short, the initial consultation was exactly that; a starting point for us both to discover what’s been happening and to start talking about what is going to happen. One thing I was really thrilled about was that I got to take something home with me right then and there! Jessica created me a brand new food plan designed around what types of food I like and not too different from what I already ate. For example, weetbix and fruit with cow’s milk has been substituted for low sugar muesli, berries and almond milk. The coffees exchanged for herbal tea. All totally doable and delicious swaps; there is nothing on my new menu I don’t like. I also got some great new recipes for home-made dips, salad variations and pre workout muffins! I left with my next appointment booked for 2 weeks’ time, a pee cup for one test, a referral for another blood test with my local GP and I was feeling positive about the whole thing.

So what now you ask? Now I have a food plan with no wheat and no dairy so we can determine if it is one or both of these foods that my body doesn’t like. We will trial this until the next appointment, in the meantime I have the two tests done and then we bring it all together at our next session! The beauty is, Jessica is available any time I need help or advice and that makes me feel super excited and motivated to see this through!

Stay tuned for daily updates and the big shop!

Peace