Listen to a story about how a diet changed my life!
You’ll also learn how to say the word “diet” and how to link vowel sounds in a word.
Welcome to the English Teacher Melanie Podcast, a podcast for intermediate to advanced English learners who want to improve their English listening and speaking skills!
Each episode includes a story and a pronunciation tip. In the story, I use core vocabulary, the most common words in English, to tell a real world story. The pronunciation tip will help you understand natural spoken English.
You’ll hear the story twice. The first time, the story is a little slower than normal. It sounds funny because I used editing software to change the speed of the story and make it slower. After the pronunciation tip, you’ll hear the story again, but at a regular speed.
I’ve been sick for a long time. I was diagnosed with a chronic illness in 2009, but I’d been sick for many years before that. Over the years, I tried a lot of different things to improve my health, but nothing helped me fully recover. By the end of 2014, I was desperate. I decided to investigate if a radical change in my diet would improve my health.
I heard about a medical laboratory that does a blood test that checks for food intolerances or foods that might cause problems in your body. I decided to have the test done, even though there is no agreement among doctors that this test measures anything. My results showed that I had 32 intolerances to everything under the sun: milk, wheat, soy, … you name it! I didn’t know what to do! What was I going to eat?
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I made an appointment with a dietician who specializes in food intolerances. I wanted to know what she thought about the results and if she thought a new diet could help me get better. She asked me to keep a diet diary. I had to write down everything I ate, how much I ate, what time I ate at, how hungry I felt, and any symptoms I experienced afterward. When I returned to the dietician, she knew right away what my problem was: sugar, specifically natural sugars in certain foods like milk, wheat, beans, and some fruits and vegetables. These sugars are poorly absorbed in the small intestine. For some people, this causes digestive problems and other problems throughout the body.
My next task was to stop eating all these foods. From the moment I started this diet, my life turned around. Most of my symptoms have disappeared. I have more energy, I sleep better, and I get more work done during the day. This is the best thing that has happened to me in years. This diet is not easy at all. I have to cook everything from scratch and eating out is difficult, but I couldn’t be happier.
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HOW TO SAY DIET AND HOW TO LINK VOWEL SOUNDS
This transcript uses IPA symbols to represent sounds and teach pronunciation. Learn more about the IPA here.
The word diet may be a little difficult to say, because the vowels I and E are in different syllables. Diet is a two-syllable word.
When one vowel sound comes after another vowel sound, it’s hard to say them smoothly without pausing between them.
There is a way to link or connect these sounds so that they flow together smoothly.
The first syllable DI /’daɪ/ is the stressed syllable and it is said louder and longer than the other syllable.
The second syllable is pronounced /ət/, where the vowel becomes the schwa sound /ə/.
So, we have /’daɪ/ and /ət/.
To join these two syllables together, add a very short Y sound /j/ in the middle of the word, in between the two vowel sounds.
It makes the word much easier to say and it sounds much more natural.
Listen carefully: /’daɪjət/
Here are some more words where the vowel sounds in different syllables are linked together with a short Y sound:
- Do you have any food allergies?
- Are you on a special diet?
- Are there any foods that you can’t eat because they make you sick?
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