The thought of finding recipes that follow the Body Ecology Diet was overwhelming at first, but I discovered much-needed ingredients that would help. Ghee (clarified butter) was one of our saviors. Tula loved it and I used it as much as I did coconut oil, (which has antimicrobial and antifungal properties). For sugar substitutes we used Lakanto, monk fruit extract, and now there is BE Sweet Powder. These sweeteners taste sweet but have a zero glycemic index, which means it won’t feed the yeast. It was terrific to bake with, since stevia didn’t taste the best in anything baked. I would find a recipe online and adapt it using our own ingredients. Most dinners consisted of a protein and vegetable, for example, quinoa with roasted vegetables or roasted chicken with kale. Everything was organic. We followed the BED food-combining rule pretty diligently for the first couple of years, avoiding protein with a starch. We were supposed to be following an 80/20 rule: 80 percent vegetable and 20 percent protein or grain. When feeding children, this was difficult to follow, so we aimed for 60/40.
Lunches would consist of rolled up deli meat, cucumber slices, kale chips (which I learned to make in a dehydrator, but now there are lots of store-bought options), eggs, plus some apple cider vinegar in her water-which can help to establish a healthy inner-eco system. Breakfasts would be eggs or pancakes made out of squash, or I replaced the flour in a pancake recipe with protein powder. We switched our grocery store and got a membership to a cooperative market, where we bought organic foods and pasture-raised and grass-fed meats. We learned how to shop wisely and frugally, and shopping at a co-op helped with managing costs. An example of dinner would be buying a whole organic chicken for about $5 (back then at the co-op), and a bunch of organic kale for about $1.50. We would then take the leftover bones and carcass and make a stock, which would become a soup the following day that we would add more organic vegetables to, and thus yield more than a single meal!
Tula resisted these meals at first, but as time went on, her taste buds were miraculously altered. While at one time she was resisting the cultured vegetable juice, she was now asking for fermented foods!
Through the BED diet, we became aware of a company, Grindstone Bakery, making fermented quinoa and millet loaves of bread! I was excited but apprehensive that this bread would taste awful. It came from San Francisco and it was expensive, but it was our one splurge and the chance to have bread in the house again was amazing. To our surprise, it was not only tolerable but absolutely delicious! It was a staple in our house and changed our breakfasts drastically.
Tula continued to make enormous strides, then regressed again with a die-off. I was constantly worried that she would permanently lose the improvement she'd made. It felt like we were always on a roller-coaster ride not knowing where we would end up, but at the same time nothing had worked better for Tula so far!
One special moment I will never forget was the first time Tula actually stared into my eyes; because it had been so hard for her to do so in the past, this eye contact was hugely significant. She woke up from a nap and I carried her to the couch to lie down with her. Her head was resting on my arm, and we were face to face. She looked into my eyes and didn’t look away. Since it was the first time this had happened, I caught myself continuing to look away from HER because her gaze was so intense and powerful—almost intimidating. I finally got the gumption to gaze back at her, nose to nose, for twenty whole minutes. I had tears streaming down my face and in those precious minutes neither of us said a word, as if we were speaking and loving each other telepathically. The fog was starting to lift for her, and she was realizing it and connecting for the first time—two souls together, loving and appreciating each other. It was truly a spiritual experience and a milestone in her growth.
© Copyright A Journey Off the Spectrum 2021