Supporting My Wife On The Paleo Journey

I am sorry I ate that Bagel…

There I am…I am a simple guy. I eat well and try to treat myself well…

My wife makes sure of that. I picked up the club and loincloth of the Paleo world to support her healing journey. If you are reading this blog you probably know she is battling a trifecta of AI diseases, like the Paleo warrior queen she is. To say I am proud of how far she has come in only a short time would be an understatement. That being said, I have not always been the best partner in her explorations on the fringes of health care and did not always understand the full extent of her health problems. It is only in the past year that I have truly become the Lewis to her Clark while we work together to heal.

There I am…I am a simple guy. I eat well and try to treat myself well…

I even have a little bit of self-control, believe it or not. But at 6’6”, 240 lbs, that self-control is not easy to come by. Especially, when there is free food involved. It is easy for me to stay caveman when my hard earned money buys the food I put in my mouth, but put a plate of free food in front of me and my will power goes out the window. And for some reason there is always free food at my work. Everything from chicken Caesar wraps and tortilla chips at lunch, to muffins and bagels left over from some morning meeting or workshop. My weakness is that bagel and cream cheese. I almost feel that through divine intervention this treat has been presented to me and it is my right and obligation to eat it.

But…then I think of my wife and most importantly (to me anyway) how I can eat this bagel and kiss her later…when can I brush my teeth? Will brushing my teeth even make my mouth safe for her lips? How can I say, “Honey, sorry I ate that Bagel?” when she greets me at the door when I get home from work.

There is my wife…She is a simple woman. She MUST eat well and MUST treat herself well…
 
She has the most amazing self-control of anyone I have ever known. But at 5’5” and less than 110 lbs, I sometimes wish that self control would let her have that bagel or for that matter a pizza topped with a giant milkshake.

You see…the difference is…I have a choice and she doesn’t. I can eat a bagel and feel more or less okay. Okay so I might be a little more inflamed in the gut than before or maybe more gaseous as my lactose intolerance kicks in from that cream cheese, but in general I will survive. But she can’t EVER make that choice.

To cheat for her is to end up with symptoms so severe she will wrestle with the inevitable trip to the emergency room. A trip she’s made way too often, at all times of the day and night, in many different countries, with and without her daughter, and with and without any support. And one fact that is for certain…is that there will be nothing that emergency room can do for her and there will be no one there that understands what is happening to her.

But that never happens anymore. See...she has self-control. All she needed to know was what the problem was and now she never cheats. She stepped out of mainstream medicine and chose to find a new way of healing through food. She has given up that bagel for me and the kid. She has chosen her health and her sanity over those foods that hurt her. Ever since the day she discovered Paleo and AIP we witnessed a transformation. Even though we had already eliminated gluten from her diet, she was still getting sicker and sicker. But within 72 hours of going AIP her anxiety all but disappeared. Then slowly but surely she started looking and feeling more healthy. By the end of her first week we knew that going back to the Standard American Diet (SAD) was a path we would never choose. She was a new woman, or more to the point, the old woman I asked to marry me. The one I vowed to love in sickness and in health.

For all us non-AIers, it is about time we admit that same food that hurt her, is hurting all of us too. I know that since I have joined Angie on her pursuit of health, I have realized that I feel better too. No more stomach cramping, no more low energy days, and my crabby old guy attitude is slowly disappearing. Not to mention, I have lost over 15 lbs and have the energy to do my old, intense workouts at least three times a week. To say this has improved our marriage and life together would be another understatement. I think she just really likes the new biceps and the slowly disappearing tire that used to be around my waist, but I even feel like I love her MORE now that I feel better TOO. I didn’t even think that was possible.

There is a wife and husband…They are a simple couple. They choose to eat well and choose to treat their bodies well…

Together we make sure of that. We eat well for each other now…we eat well so that we both heal and we both live long healthy lives for ourselves and each other. It’s not so much about disease anymore, as it is that we know what health looks like now. We know the visible change that happened when she dropped the SAD foods and big pharma products. And for me, I know I have given up so much in this journey, but I have regained the woman I married and my best friend. Not to mention our whole family is healthier and more conscious of real nutrition. The fringes of health care are no longer fringes to us. They are the foundation. We stand on that foundation and look out together with wonder as we continue to explore the profound impact food and our health has on our lives and our love for each other. That is until I come home from work on occasion and have to say, “I am sorry I ate that bagel …”

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15 thoughts on “Supporting My Wife On The Paleo Journey

  1. Nancy

    Wow! We need to put you in the cloning booth and run a million copies of you! Kudos to you for supporting your wife so wholly.

    Reply
  2. Anonymous

    This is one of the most beautiful pieces of "literature" I have ever read. What a good man you are and Angie, how very lucky you are to have him! This puts hope in my world and makes today a good day! Thank you both!

    Reply
    1. Angie Alt

      Post author

      Vicki, it stands for Auto Immune Protocol. It is a version of the Paleo diet meant to help manage autoimmune disease.

      Reply
  3. Nita Redden

    Well written, my hubby is understanding as we go through this, someday I hope he gets to where you are with this!

    Reply
  4. This is wonderful! It sounds like you have a great guy there. I do too! Our journey to health definitely include our husbands. It makes such a difference to have one that is supportive!

    Reply

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