I’ve been going through a lot of personal health stuff lately. My friends haven’t heard the last of it and I’m sure I’m beginning to let whinging define me as a person. My top new year’s resolution shattered (ie: whinge less) and it’s only March 9.
The number of times I have alluded to the fact that ‘I can’t eat that’ are immeasurable by now. Sorry to all the lovely people who have been so supportive about my dramatic antics re: the issue. I didn’t want this post to be all about what is actually going on with me health-wise but I think it’s important to discuss and that my blog – at least in its temporary state – will no longer be entirely about eating out.
Why? Well, okay, since you asked – I have Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and I’m sure I’ve had it for longer than I originally thought but I finally decided to do something about it.
Not to go into too much detail but for the last few years, the bathroom has been my worst best friend. I spend way too many hours running to the loo to even want to think about it (TMI territory I know! Stop Eva stop!). I’ve trialled a dairy and gluten free diet for the last few months but the real problem was FODMAPs all along. To put it really simply – it’s an acronym that takes certain vegetables/fruits/legumes/dairy products/grains out of your diet to help your gut heal and bring the good bacteria back into gear.
This news, to someone who’s told herself countless times that she wants to be a food journalist, is pretty damn devastating. No mangoes. No bread. No garlic. No hummus. No soft serves. It spans through every damn category. So many no-go zones. It’s made eating out for the past few months quite difficult and I’ve realised that not a lot of places accommodate to this very common problem. Gluten free is not too hard to find but tell a chef at an Italian/Thai/Chinese/Malaysian (and like 80% of other cuisines) restaurant to give you a garlic/onion-free dish and the whole place will be laughing.
Not many people know what this diet consists of so not many places cater to these needs. Which is totally fine! I don’t expect them to do that so I’ve stopped eating out as much and when I do, I’m super selective about where I go. Oh, also, I’ve rekindled my obsession with sushi. Sushi is my life vice right now. It always has been but now more than ever.
So what I’m really trying to say is, it’s really bloody hard to stay positive when there’s so much limitation to this diet but I’ve got a new appreciation for home-cooked food and I’m experimenting with more flavours than I have before. I planted fresh herbs! I found a curry powder that’s onion and garlic free (Keens – thank god)!
Instagram – as silly as it sounds – has been the biggest help. Knowing that so many people also go through this makes it feel much easier to handle, and there are a woopload of recipes online to help a gal out. It’s not as devastating as it sounds, and you know what? Maybe I can still pursue food writing, this diet thingy could be temporary (that’s my hope anyway). So there’s the most depressingly first world thing you’re going to read all day – now let’s do a product review!
Name: lovingearth Organic Salted Caramel Chocolate Luvju (RRP $2.65)
– Vegan, soy-, dairy-, gluten-, cane sugar-, GMO-free (whoo, what a mouthful..)
– Less than 200 calories per bar
– Only 2 tsp sugar per serve
– 100% organic, raw and fairtrade
– Compostable packaging materials
– Cute new packaging
lovingearth is not a cheap and cheerful product. You’re never going to find it in the Coles confectionery clearance bin. This fact makes the luvju bar all the more indulgent and probably even hypes up your brain into think it’s going to taste like the best damn thing you’ve ever tried. And it succeeds! It’s delicious!
Creamy, sweet but with a mellow salty kick and melt-in-your-mouth quality. There’s no gritty ‘oh my god I’m eating vegan chocolate’ feel and because it’s so high in good fats, it’s quite satiating. If I could fork out $3 for a bar of chocolate every day I would, but since I can’t, this luvju bar receives a well-rounded 4 out of 5 rating.