This Man Gave Up Coffee, Sugar, Dairy, and Gluten for An Entire Month — Here’s What Happened
Lachlan Brown is like me and you — he loves to eat. But after traveling for six months and subsisting on a diet of french fries, coke, and beer, his unhealthy habits started to show. Brown wrote on IdeaPod:
“[…] recently I noticed (and several girls told me) that my stomach had grown considerably large. So I checked the weight scales and surprise, surprise, I’d gained 7 kilos (28 lbs) in 6 months.”
Brown was so surprised, he had few reservations when an email popped up challenging him to give up soda, alcohol, sugar, gluten, fruit juice, coffee, eggs, and dairy for an entire month. Because the foods are full of additives that adversely affect health, as well as contribute to inflammation, the experimenter decided to give them up for 30 days.
What did he eat?
As Brown noted, he “stuck to basically organic foods: vegetables, chicken, pork, fruit, rice, and potatoes.” He wrote that he’s “not much of a foodie,” so was comfortable with a plain diet.
One thing he did prioritize was eating large amounts of vegetables, salads, and meat every day. “I assume those are at least safe,” he joked. While working on the computer, Brown drank green tea. In fact, he consumed about four to five green teas per day.
The First Few Days
During the first few days, Brown constantly felt hungry. He also felt as if his energy was depleted.
“Before this, I was having about 3 coffees a day, plus at least one Coke-Cola.”
Sugar and caffeine had been stimulating his adrenals, so their absence resulted in a lag. Fortunately, this went away after a few days.
After One Week
Within one week, Brown noticed the following:
More energy throughout the day
“After the week of death, my body started to feel fresh when I ran in the morning,” Brown wrote. “I also felt more mentally awake when I was working. The best bit? I was sustained.”
When he relied on coffee, Brown wrote, his energy levels would fluctuate. This didn’t occur during the experiment.
He was intrigued to learn that, according to a Harvard study, caffeine causes “highs” and “lows” in energy. It can also affect how you sleep. He also learned that poor nutrition can cause fatigue.
He lost 3 kgs in one month
“Before this, I’d usually have 1-3 beers at night (and sometimes a lot more when I had a crazy big night). That’s probably the reason I’d wake up feeling bloated in my stomach,” Brown wrote.
His suspicions were confirmed when he gave up alcohol and within one week, noticed that he felt “less full and fat.” While admitting that it was difficult to give up beer, Brown concluded that it was worth it for his body.
“I also found that my moods were more stable. I’m generally a happy guy but I can certainly get angry and irritable at times,” he wrote.
He became more fit (and ripped)
Because he had more energy, Brown visited the gym more often. He found out that during the experiment, he could lift heavier weights and do more body exercises, such as push-ups and pull-ups.
“I also ran about 5 kilometers, twice, a day,” he explained. “As I wasn’t relying on coffee or soda for a quick energy boost, I found that gym workouts and running gave me a nice energy boost if I needed it.”
His sleep improved — drastically
Brown admitted that he’s always had trouble sleeping. During the experiment, however, he received some of the best sleep he’s had in his life.
“The past couple weeks,” Brown wrote, “I’ve been sleeping quite well. I hardly wake during the night which is rare for me. I can’t be certain if it’s the diet because mindset plays a huge role in sleep for me.”
“However, it’s a nice correlation,” he concluded, adding that studies suggest sugar in one’s diet makes it more difficult to go to sleep. Brown also referenced a study linking caffeine with poor sleep.
His sniffles went away
“I’m no longer sneezing,” Brown wrote. “For some reason, I regularly have a runny nose, particularly during hay-fever season. But I haven’t noticed that at all in the past few weeks.”
After doing some research, he learned that research has shown that eating too many processed foods impairs the body’s immune system, making it more difficult to fight off bugs and foreign invaders.
30 Days Later
Brown reflects on the experience as being both “pretty great” and “challenging.”
“My energy and mental state has improved, I’ve lost weight, my sleep has been good, and I’m fitter than I’ve been for a while,” he wrote.
Because of this, he says he will continue with the lifestyle. Of course, there will be an allowance for beer.
“The one thing I will change is beer. I won’t have it every night, but I reserve the right to have a few beers once or twice a week. You gotta have fun sometimes!”
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