Nothing Canned, Boxed…A Long-Ago Diet Change Has Proven Helpful
For 74-year-old Linda Linker, a lifelong change in diet began in 1973. Her two daughters were in first and third grades at the time. The older was displaying issues with reading and writing, oftentimes seeing things backward and writing things upside down. The younger daughter’s issues were relegated to hearing; she couldn’t differentiate between certain phonetics. Both girls also suffered from frequent ear infections.
Ironically, around the same time, a study on dyslexia was being conducted at the University of Louisville. Although not officially diagnosed with the disorder, Linda’s daughters participated in the study, which premised that the disorder may be affected by certain foods or environmental causes. To participate in the study, the girls could not eat anything that was canned, boxed, white, or contained artificial colors or preservatives.
“That made it pretty difficult, trying to find the right foods to feed them,” recalls Linda. “So it was just easier for the whole household to be on the same diet.”
The transition also seemed not too difficult for Linda since, by that time, she had already been avoiding sugar in her diet for five to six years as well as not eating many carbohydrates. On both sides of her family, there’s a history of heart disease and diabetes. She credits her eating habits as a saving grace from both diseases.
On a typical day, breakfast for Linda may be steel-cut oatmeal, a bagel with organic peanut butter, or eggs. Lunch is very light, perhaps carrots, celery, a couple pieces of cheese, or a cup of soup. Dinner is a small serving of fish or chicken with brown rice and lots of salad.
“Sometimes dinner can just be salad,” she adds.
Linda only uses olive oil and has been gluten-free for about four years. She was also a vegetarian for about 11 years but notes that she experienced issues with being protein-deficient, so chicken and fish, and very few occasions of beef, now land on her plate.
To those who desire to implement a healthy change to their diet, Linda says,“The simplest thing you can do that isn’t going to cost you money or take any time is to not add sugar to anything. It’s a slow thing; you can’t just stop all of a sudden. Just reduce the amount of sugar to zero. And try not to eat more than 40 grams of carbohydrates a day,” she adds, stating that carbohydrates break down into sugar inside the body. “If people did that, that would make a huge difference.”