a plate of vegetables in the background with a hand covering a plate of bread

My experience with the elimination diet

If you follow me on social media, or have ever had a conversation with me about health and wellness, you know how much I love the elimination diet! I was not only taught the IFM Elimination Diet during my health coaching certification, but I’ve also completed the diet myself. 

In late December 2020, I got pretty sick from the COVID-19 virus. I was bedridden for more than 14 days, experiencing every symptom in the book, and eating next to nothing. When I did eat, it was easy to digest carbs and a lot of packaged snacks. Since I had lost my taste and smell, I was eating just to put something in my stomach, and not for pleasure. Although I couldn’t technically taste anything, what I could “taste” was the chemicals in the packaged foods!

And that is actually the catalyst for my researching elimination diets and functional medicine which ultimately led to my pursuit of health coaching!

I had always been curious about plans like Whole 30 or other strict diets focusing on the elimination of certain foods, but I didn’t think I could commit to something like that because I just wasn’t that crazy about the idea of giving up bread and sugar to live off chicken and veggies for a month. But after eating very little and being sober for two weeks due to COVID, I figured if I was ever going to try my hand at a healthier eating, now would be the time.

As someone who thoroughly enjoys a challenge, I felt like a player in the game of Clue, only I was playing against myself. I tracked everything I ate in a journal and recorded my daily symptoms as well. Although the reintroduction phase was a bit tricky, I really found the elimination phase to be quite easy. And I actually kind of enjoyed the test of creating meals without relying on foods full of preservatives, sugar, and starches! 

In the end, I lost three pounds (I was already at an abnormally low weight for me due to COVID), gained control of my sugar addition, and learned my body feels best on a predominately gluten, dairy, and grain-free diet. 

IFM’s Elimination Diet is a three-week program designed to tailor a person’s diet for their unique physiology, clear the body of foods and chemicals that the patient may be sensitive or allergic to, support the gut microbiome, reduce inflammation, and increase phytonutrient intake. During the program, the patient removes specific foods and categories of foods from their diet. After the three weeks are complete, a careful reintroduction of foods can identify previously hidden food triggers that may have been contributing to illness, causing fatigue, and reducing overall vitality. – Institute of Functional Medicine

5 Reasons to Complete an elimination diet

1- Identify Food Sensitivities

An elimination diet may help you identify food sensitivities, intolerances, or even allergies. By eliminating the foods most commonly associated with uncomfortable symptoms, and then slowly reintroducing them, you can identify which foods are least tolerated. Common symptoms include: skin changes, digestive issues, fatigue, bloating, headaches, and joint pain.

2- Gut Healing

The gut microbiome plays a crucial role in metabolism, nutrition, and immune function. It is a balanced system of microorganisms to include bacteria, fungi, viruses, and other organisms. However, due to the Standard American Diet (SAD) and underconsumption of nutrient-rich foods, most of us have an unhealthy gut with too many of the bad bugs and not enough of the good. An elimination diet helps us focus on eating more beneficial, whole foods and balancing the gut microbiome.

3- Weight Loss

Because an elimination diet focuses on removing foods that are processed, inflammatory, and are high in sugars and starches, weight loss is an added benefit. Instead of consuming high-calorie foods with little to no nutritional value, you focus on eating foods which nourish and energize the body. And although there is no calorie restriction, most people naturally consume less calories due to the replacement of high-calorie, nutrient lacking foods with more natural, whole-foods.

4- Reduce Inflammation

he elimination diet helps reduce inflammation by removing triggering foods and introducing beneficial anti-inflammatory foods. By removing processed foods, alcohol, sugar, gluten, and other foods you may be sensitive to, you focus on consuming more anti-inflammatory foods full of antioxidants and phytonutrients. What to eat includes gut healing foods such as fruits, vegetables, healthy oils, lean meats, seeds, and non-gluten grains.

5- Create Healthier Habits

At the conclusion of the elimination diet, you will be well on your way to creating healthier habits. As your body begins to heal, you will start to see improvements such as better sleep, more energy, and less brain fog, and you will find it easier to continue eating a clean, nutritious diet while also incorporating more physical movement and other activities you enjoy.

Progress is empowering!

If you’re ready to take your health to the next level, I offer a coaching package specifically for the 28-day IFM Elimination Diet! I provide all resources, weekly coaching sessions, and unlimited message support to help you succeed. And for the month of October, I am offering a $100 discount!

If you're on the fence about doing the elimination diet with Brittany all I can say is just do it because you will not be disappointed! I started the diet knowing this wouldn't be easy but would be worth it when completed. It's important to know the process and have the right mindset going into it. Brittany did a fantastic job providing me documents with everything I needed to know and what to expect over the next 4 weeks. She even provided recipes and a shopping list to make it easier. The weekly personal video calls were perfect to help you stay on track. By the middle of the 2nd week I had already stopped having cravings and I wasn't as hungry. At the end of the 4 weeks I had lost 14 lbs and felt amazing. I plan on trying to maintain the new eating habits I formed to keep losing weight. I can't recommend Brittany's plan enough. Take the leap and improve your health today!

Welcome to Everything Wellness! I’m Brittany, a Functional Medicine Certified Health Coach on a mission to help you feel alive and achieve your ideal vision of health! I help people get back on track through 1:1 wellness coaching, sharing my personal experiences with health struggles, and educating on the importance of lifestyle medicine.

Wellness Coaching

A client-centered approach to holistic wellness through lifestyle modification and behavior change.

Functional Medicine

A form of alternative medicine that focuses on identifying and addressing the root cause of disease.

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