Have you ever felt like you were doing everything possible to take care of yourself, but you were still struggling to feel good? To lose weight? To stop feeling tired? This happened to me recently and I finally got the answers I needed.
Before I dive in, it’s important to know that I love experimenting with different meal plans and food philosophies—everything from paleo to vegan. I love testing recipes and sharing new discoveries. Because I experiment so willingly, I also learn certain lessons the hard way.
Also: Six years ago, I started reading the research and articles about the effects of gluten. I wasn’t regularly eating starchy carbs anyway, so it wasn’t a huge deal at the time.
Then suddenly all of these organic, gluten-free foods became available and I started tasting them. They were, of course, delicious. Among my favorites: an awesome meal replacement bar by Core Meal. It’s an organic, low-sugar, gluten-free chocolate chip oatmeal bar (insanely delicious!). I added it to my arsenal of healthy food bars, including the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Zing! bar and Madagascar Vanilla KIND bar. So good!
Around the same time, I was 100% on top of my Victory Rituals and daily morning yoga and meditation practice. It was a thing of beauty. But somehow, despite doing everything right, I had gained weight. No matter what adjustments I made, I was not seeing any improvements.
Occasionally, I’ll do a juice cleanse, so I decided that’s what I needed. I did Urban Remedy’s 3 day low-glycemic cleanse and I started feeling better immediately.
The morning after my cleanse was over, I had some fruit and later I had gluten-free oatmeal. My bloating came back immediately. I was back to square one (and super frustrated). I just wanted to figure out what was going on…
A Possible Solution
I dove back into my research, determined not to give up. Then I found an article about food intolerance—and the weight gain associated with it—and started learning about food intolerance vs. food allergies. While completely different, they “may sometimes have similar symptoms.”
A food allergy is an immune response, causes more immediate and severe allergic reactions, and is potentially life threatening (anaphylaxis). Food intolerance is a chemical reaction that happens over a longer time period, and according to Australia’s health services, it has been associated with asthma, chronic fatigue syndrome, and digestive issues.
I found that food intolerance tests exist, but most practitioners recommend trying an elimination diet; food intolerance tests might also detect temporary food intolerances. From what I understand, you might have a temporary reaction to a certain food simply because you haven’t had it in a while, not because it should be permanently removed from your diet.
Pinnertest: A Food Intolerance Test
A breakthrough came when I discovered Pinnertest, an at-home food intolerance test that detects permanent—not temporary—food intolerance.
When I first learned about Pinnertest, I read that health professionals in Europe have been using this test for a while. They often have a patient take the test before prescribing a new diet, as it wouldn’t make sense to tell someone to eat seemingly “healthy” foods that are causing inflammation.
Eager to learn more, I reached out to Pinnertest and asked a bunch of questions (I’m happy to say, I had a great experience and I’ve teamed up with them—more info below!). The Pinnertest hub is in Italy—and all of the samples are sent there—but you can also go into the midtown NYC office. I took my test at home and sent it through the mail, which was very convenient.
The test involves a small pin-like needle to get the blood sample.
After you complete the at home blood test, you mail the sample to the lab, and the lab identifies any permanent food intolerances. You’ll receive your results within about 7-10 days.
My Food Intolerance Results
About 10 days after submitting my test, I received my results via email. As I read through the report, I was nervous and excited. I scrolled down to see my results and any foods that I should eliminate. It turns out I’m not gluten intolerant. I’m highly intolerant to oats! The test also indicated a moderate intolerance to oranges and a low intolerance to bell pepper and pinto beans.
I started thinking about the oatmeal bar I had been eating daily. The red bell peppers I loved to roast at home. The gluten-free, dairy-free bean burritos I topped with a mound of guac. The gluten-free bread I loved that was made with oat flour. The fresh-squeezed orange juice mimosas at brunch…
But I was more surprised to find these ingredients hiding in other foods I was eating. There was bell pepper in my probiotic. My raw, organic all-in-one protein powder also had bell pepper. And that Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Zing! bar I mentioned earlier? Oats in the ingredients! Bummer.
Learning about my intolerance to oats was a surprise, but it was also a relief. It was the missing piece of information. I had been incorporating more grains into my diet and not understanding why “healthy” and organic foods were making me feel bad.
I asked the team at Pinnertest if the body can ever recover or heal from food intolerance. They explained that food intolerance is “mostly caused by a permanent enzyme deficiency” and is not expected to change.
I started simplifying my meal plan. To eliminate variables, I removed foods or products with tons of ingredients. I went a full 24 hours without consuming those four inflammatory (for me) foods, and felt better the next day. By the end of the week my stomach had flattened out again and I was down 5 pounds. I did not do any extra exercise or reduce calories that week. I was just eating healthily for me and for my body.
Get Your Own Results
I’m so glad I took the test. It’s helpful to take the guesswork out of meal planning and focus on the foods that I know energize me. I feel relieved and empowered.
Because the process is so simple, you can get your results as soon as next week.
Order Pinnertest Today—Ships in 2 Days
Click here to order your own Pinnertest and enter my code VICTORY for a $60 discount (using my code will save you $60 and I’ll also receive a commission on your purchase). Thank you in advance should you decide to use my code!
If you have questions or if you decided to try it, please send me a note at nicole AT victoryrituals DOT com.
Here’s to your health!