Victoria Williamson

Bloated after meals and lethargic

The Great Britain cyclist is finally getting back on track with her cycling career after she was nearly paralysed from the neck down following a race collision in 2016.

Victoria spent months rehabilitating and is still working on regaining her fitness levels. She noticed she got bloated after meals and felt lethargic, so decided to overhaul her diet.

Food intolerance testing revealed she was intolerant to cow’s milk and egg white, with borderline reactions to yeast, egg yolk and beef.

Since cutting these foods out of her diet, she lost weight, has more energy and no longer feels bloated.

British track cyclist Victoria has high hopes for the future, with her sights set on competing at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. Yet at one point it was feared she wouldn’t cycle again, after a serious accident nearly paralysed her and derailed her career.

Since then, it’s been a long, bumpy road back to health for the 23-year-old Norfolk-born cycling star. Her hopes for making the track squad at the Rio Olympics were dashed in January 2016 following a collision with another rider during the sprint heat in Rotterdam, Holland.

She broke her neck, back and pelvis and narrowly avoided being paralysed from the neck down.

“The surgeon measured the break on the MRI scan and it was two millimetres from my spinal cord”, explains Victoria.

Thankfully, her spinal cord stayed intact because her neck and back were so strong. Victoria, who won team sprint bronze at the 2013 World Championships, was hospitalised for a month and her rehabilitation battle included lengthy operations to stabilise her injuries, as well as having to learn to sit upright and walk again.

On top of that, there was the pain of having to miss the Rio Olympics. “You train for four years to make the Olympics and it’s a big smack in the face when you can’t go,” she said.

However, she hopes to return to full training over the next few months and for now, is taking it one day at a time to get back to peak physical fitness.

This return to training has also meant her taking a closer look at her diet after she started to feel bloated and tired.

“I was unable to pin down exactly what foods caused it. I felt the symptoms started after my accident as I was unable to train,” explains Victoria.

“I felt lethargic and also noticed I didn’t have my usual toned stomach.Returning from a major injury puts an athlete at a huge physical disadvantage.

“Therefore, I wanted to maximise my gains regarding my diet. I hadn’t tried much apart from eating less complex carbs,” she explains.

Victoria heard about the Lorisian food intolerance programme through fellow cyclist Dani King, who recommended it after trying it herself.

The process involves sending a finger-prick blood sample to the company’s laboratory to test reactions to up to 158 food and drink ingredients.

Victoria’s results revealed that she was intolerant to cow’s milk and egg white, with a borderline reaction to yeast, egg yolk and beef.

Despite the challenges Victoria had already encountered, she felt daunted about carrying out an elimination diet as all the foods she enjoyed, plus the protein she needed for training, were out of bounds.

However, following a consultation with one of Lorisian’s nutritional therapists, who advised her
on finding balanced alternatives, Victoria realised she had options when it came to her new eating plan.

“I found it relatively hard at first as athletes need excessive amounts of protein compared to a normal individual.

"However, once I got all the right products in the house, such as dairy-free butter and alternative protein sources, I did get into a routine and it became easier,” she says.

After eliminating her trigger foods¹, Victoria noticed results within a couple of weeks. “I felt completely different and lost a bit of weight.”

She has since reintroduced her trigger foods back into her diet without any symptoms.

“If I was to eat dairy excessively then I would probably get bloated, so I have adjusted my diet to only allow smaller amounts,” she explains.

“Since taking my food intolerance test, I have become more aware of my diet and now understand alternative sources of protein, so I can still supply my body with the correct fuel for training.”

Lorisian advise that you consult with your GP first if you are experiencing the types of symptoms mentioned in this testimonial. Taking the test is straight forward, with no need to visit Lorisian’s laboratory. The results will be within 7-10 days.