Friday, May 24, 2013

Day 75 Rest and digest; digest and rest

For a long, long time, I've been eating whenever I get hungry or, more accurately, whenever I get the urge to eat, whether that's from physical hunger or restlessness or the need for a reward or a diversion or fuel to keep doing what I'm doing. I always listened up at the suggestion that a number of small meals were better than 3 bigger ones and I turned that pretty much into non-stop grazing.

I'm finding it hard to stop doing this. It's a well-worn groove in my brain, my system, my habits. But I'm finding some additional incentive in something my coach said recently. When we eat late at night, we ask our digestive systems and our livers to go on working during the night, instead of giving those systems a chance to rest and repair. When they rest, we rest better. Similarly, when we eat all day, they also work harder.

In 1975, I contracted Hepatitis B from my boyfriend and had a very poorly functioning liver for a few months. There wasn't much known about Hep B in those days and I had no insurance, just the university health system. But I lucked onto a doctor there with less conservative ideas. And he suggested I eat solely carbohydrates to rest my liver. Carbs are processed in the stomach and intestines, while fats and proteins require the liver's involvement in their digestion. I did what he suggested and ate only carbs for 3 months, and my liver came back unscarred.

So it makes sense to me, this idea of rest and digest in cycles. Now if I could only convince my addict self to cooperate...

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