Ah ha! Did that capture your imagination?! What is she going on about today? Food diary gone rogue? Well … grab a glass of kombucha or kefir and put your feet up.
The way I see it there is a bit of a hierarchy of food diaries. Basic food diaries can give you information about what you are eating. That’s about it folks.
Now, a food and symptom diary they come one step up the food diary ladder. They can give you information that can show a link between what you are eating and any symptoms you might be having. All well and good, as long as you know what components link what foods. For example a knowledge of oxalates, amines, salicylates, FODMAPs, diary, nuts, and a host of other compounds can be fairly useful (or having a health care professional who does).
On the same level as food and symptom diaries are food and mood diaries. Ah, these little gems can tell you a lot about not just what you eat but why you eat! Outstanding information to shine light on your eating behaviour. Intuitive eating at it's finest.
At the top of the food diary pyramid (at least in my humble opinion) is the journal. Journaling is an amazing world that combines scrapbooking with art with therapy with Pinterest with … well anything really.
There are three reasons why nourishing journaling can be essential to your healing process.
1. Our mind, or story and our experiences influence our health in a massive way. Journaling is cheap therapy. Expressing our feelings without judgement in a way that we find relaxing can be, well, therapeutic.
2. When you are living in the middle of food reactions, nasty symptoms and multiple food exclusions it can be hard seeing the wood for the trees. Nourishin journaling can help you to keep a very informative record of what is going on.
3. Anyone can do it. In fact for kids journaling can help give them some control over what may seem like an area of their lives that they have no control over at all. Any age of child can be taught simple, easy journaling skills. For older kids (8 plus) then journaling can be an essential technique to keep food relationships positive. And for adults it can be a good excuse to have some “me time”, and remember the little things (like crayons and felt tip pens) that bring joy.
Get started with journaling
· A good link to read before you start
· Can't think of how to do this with kids. Check this out
· This one is good too
· And then of course there is Pinterest! That’s a few hours’ worth of inspiration!
Nourishing journaling tips
· Write your food diary in your journal
· Write / draw about how you were feeling that day – not just physical symptoms but your feelings too.
· What random thoughts pop in to your head that you might want to take note of?
· Have you had a look back at pages before and noticed a link? Draw it in.
· Are you craving foods? Write about it. Doodle about it. When you ate it how did you feel? Did it remind you of something or did I make you feel better?
· Stick in a good recipe!
Can you see how your food diary just went rogue? Now it’s not just a food diary, it’s a nourishing journal that will help you on so many more levels than just looking at what you ate. It looks at your story, your food, your symptoms, your relationship with food. Rogue – but in a good way.
And you can always come talk to us about this too. Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org to see if we can help out.
Katrina Pace, Dietitian
Gut bugs fascinate me. Diet and gut bugs intrigue me. Cooking is essential. Add them all together and you get a fairly interesting opinion on life! In my humble opinion.