Ive always been a healthy eater. Never drank soda, cooked from scratch, and avoided processed foods.

So I was skeptical that the elimination diet in the The Whole Body Cure program—a new health plan from Prevention that focuses on healing inflammation by identifying food sensitivities—could help me. But I was desperate: For the past 5 years, I've had joint pain in my knees and my hips so severe that it would wake me out of a sound sleep. At just 47 years old, it hurt just to put my feet on the floor in the morning, and lying down was horrible.

I was shocked at how wrong I was about the diet. The diet—which involves eliminating all foods except protein shakes, vegetables, and fruits for two weeks, and then adding foods back slowly to see if there is a reaction—really forced me to pay attention to what I'm eating and to how the food affects me. As the first 2 weeks of the elimination diet progressed, I realized my knees didn't hurt anymore. And, I was amazed that when I ate a food after the elimination period, I could suddenly experience a symptom that I hadn't had for weeks.

Like eggs. In the past I would often eat three eggs a day. But they were one of the foods I gave up on the elimination diet. When I started eating them again, I couldn't believe the effect: The very first day I added the eggs back into my diet, I developed a headache, I had heartburn, and my joint pain returned. When the symptoms continued the next day, my husband pointed out that eggs were not agreeing with me. So I stopped eating eggs, and within half a day, my symptoms were gone.

I thought a food sensitivity or intolerance would only cause GI issues or maybe allergy symptoms like hives, and it does for some people. But I found out that the exact symptoms I was having—headache, heartburn, and joint pain—were classic symptoms of a food intolerance. I've since followed up with my own doctor, and learned that I have an intolerance to albumin, which is found in egg whites.

If I use eggs at all now, it's very sparingly, like in an egg bath for zucchini chips. I've drastically cut back on snacking, and I always think about what I'm eating before I eat it, both of which have contributed to losing 18 pounds and 12.5 inches.

Overall, I have lots more energy since I've started The Whole Body Cure plan, and I want to put it to good use. I enjoy biking, walking, and yoga. My goal is to lose a few more pounds, and then my daughter and I are going to do a 5K together. I haven't felt this good in 15 years.