Jihanna

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Everything posted by Jihanna

  1. Jihanna

    Bone broth - do I need a pressure cooker?

    Absolutely not. You can do this on the stove, in a slow cooker, or using a pressure cooker. Any of those methods works, the difference just comes down to how long it cooks and how much potential babysitting you need to do with it (i.e., I'll check much more often on a pot sitting on my stove for 10 hours than I will on a crock cooking 10 hours on low). https://wholefully.com/bone-broth/ She has a very detailed explanation of how she does things and why, with tips on how to save time and money when it comes to the veggies included in the broth) https://wellnessmama.com/5888/bone-broth/ Another example by a different blogger. Anytime you come across something that seems to be made a certain way and you can't do that method for whatever reason, just try googling "(insert food/recipe here) (insert method you'd prefer to use)" like "bone broth stove top" or "spaghetti squash crock pot". It usually happens that someone has already managed it (or at least tried it and shared the results) when I go searching for alternatives, and it winds up saving me the time of trying to figure it out on my own Good luck making your broth!
  2. Jihanna

    Too full!

    My pleasure I'm definitely not a coach or mod, lol, but I do understand how confusing it can be (especially when looking at recipes that supposedly make a certain number of servings versus how far it'll actually go for my family) in the beginning... ok, and sometimes later on, too! I try to at least read the most of the forums and then often will type responses that never get posted (heh), but when it's something I feel like I really can speak on, I try to share my experiences in hopes that it'll help I'm wishing you both luck! I'm also a little bit jealous, as I've not yet been able to convince my husband that he can live without bread, pasta, and rice for even just 45 days
  3. Jihanna

    Too full!

    There's no reason to stuff yourself. The point is to eat until satisfied, so if you're satisfied with a smaller meal then that's fine! Just as we don't all have the same size hands, we probably don't all eat off the same size plate, either. In any given meal at my house, we will typically have at least 3 different types/sizes of plate on our table, based on what each of us prefers... that means that the same size piece of meat would be paired up with a different amount of vegetables depending on which plate I use! I think the most important part of all of this is to find a good balance proportion-wise (the ratio of protein to carbs to fat) while using portion sizes that work well for you. There are two ways you could start... 1 - Keep making the same size and proportions, and just stop eating when you're ready to stop eating. You can save the rest for later in case you need a snack, add it to lunch, or whatever. After a few days, compare to see how much you've got left over on average to get an idea of how to tweak things and get a better portion size. 2 - Cut everything in half (except the banana) and have a mini-meal on hand for a snack, in case it's needed. Each day, build upward by adding a little at a time until you reach a point where you're feeling satisfied by the portions and able to slide through to the next meal without snacking (on most days, if not all). Personally, I'd go with the paring down method (as opposed to a quick drop and building back up), but maybe that's just me
  4. Jihanna

    Sugar and reintroduction

    Sugar as an ingredient on bacon = added sugar, despite what the nutrition panel shows. The thing is that they can say there's 0% if there's under a certain amount (like half a percent or whatever). So the added sugar is there, there's just little enough of it for them to claim that it's not. In the case of bacon, the sugar is generally used in the curing process itself. That said, you've completed your Whole30 and even bringing in small amounts of sugar at a time is a good reintroduction. In fact, I'd suggest NOT reintroducing sugar at a rate that you might've eaten prior to Whole30, because (if anything like my own consumption) you'd probably wind up in bed sick. My sugar reintro day included a teaspoon of honey with my morning tea, an all-natural dressing that included some kind of sugar (I forget) on my lunch salad, and an evening tea which included stevia leaf. I definitely felt the effect of having sugar in my diet again, and wound up cutting back for the following weeks while I slowly completed my reintroductions. All that was just to say that if it's there, it's there, even if they say it doesn't affect the nutritional values. How your body interprets the presence of the sugar will be determined by your specific body, so the only way to know the effect is to try it. If you feel like you've reintroduced a small bit of sugar with no noticeable (or ill) effects and want to step it up a little, go for it... just know where you plan to stop, if you don't want to go beyond a certain point, and realize that you might get more than your usual sugar dose at times with the other things you reintroduce later if they're pre-packaged at all.
  5. Jihanna

    Help - Used the wrong flour

    I was going to note something similar to Schrod, in terms of making sure you're establishing that baseline for reintroduction tests and that might mean it takes a little longer than 30 days, especially if there have been any hiccups along the way. I learned the hard way to not trust store-bought rotisserie chicken (at least not in my area) during a Whole30, and that I need to make a list of what I'm going to put in my build-a-bowl or salad type meals when I go out to eat, because my brain doesn't always equate "baby corn" as off-limits (despite having "corn" right there in the name of it)! I'm also one who prefers to look at it as extending a Whole30 rather than starting over, because starting over would kind of kill my mood Doing this while also quitting smoking can be hard, I know. The nicotine only stays in your system a few days (it'd actually be gone by now), and all traces of it (including breakdown product) are gone within 10 days. Nicotine withdrawal is a different animal, because it isn't just about the physical addiction - it's very much a psychological one. The good news is that doing this during Whole30 is really a great thing, because Whole30 is already built to help you examine your relationship with foods and learn how to identify/avoid some triggers and even replace undesirable food habits with healthier ones. This means that you can use the same approach with quitting smoking... and instead of focusing on what you're NOT doing, focus instead on doing the thing you want to build into a good habit. It kills two birds with one stone and gives you a way to cope with any stress or anxiety that comes up due to not reaching for a smoke. You can totally do this
  6. Jihanna

    Eating enough?

    Real Plans is a Whole30 partner, but not a part of Whole30 in and of itself... so it's totally possible to do one using Real Plans' W30 plan but it's also possible to go without a meal planner entirely. I personally must have more control over my meal planning, so I'm typically reviewing a few new recipes each week to add to my online recipe box, then build my weekly meal plan based on weekly sales in my area... that way, I'm not planning a bunch of meals that require chicken if chicken isn't on sale, unless I've already got some freezer meals ready to go. Some people prefer to have the work done for them, and it's awesome if that works for you, I'm just not someone who can give up that much control! Drizzling olive oil over your veggies definitely counts as fat (think about about a thumb's worth when doing that). When you can use avocado in place of nuts, I would do so, maybe even mixing it in with something else to change the flavor/texture if that helps you guys eat it. I actually hated avocado in any form prior to my first Whole30 round, and by the end of it I was eating half an avocado with at least one meal each day; I do still prefer it when it's in bites of other stuff, but I don't abhor it like I did at first. Bananas are certainly the go-to for potassium, but not necessarily the only option... and quite a few on the list in that article are very much Whole30-compliant. You'd obviously have to avoid the beans but hopefully that'll help you find some good ways to include more potassium in your diet without having to rely on a fruit you don't particularly enjoy. No more thoughts from me for now... it's time to go start dinner.
  7. Jihanna

    Eating enough?

    Agreeing with what's been posted above, and also wanted to point out... - It's okay to eat the upper end of the recommended amounts, and even to go over it at times if that's what your body needs. I can't do just a palm-sized portion of meat with my dinner, for instance, I need more protein than that so I typically will eat about 2 palms. For meals where we've done burgers, I've cooked them as 4-ounce patties and eaten 1.5-2 of them every since time (along with a massive amount of veggies to go with it). - I'd suggest not leaning on fruit too much. Fruit is an excellent way for a sugar dragon to dupe you into keeping it awake and kicking, so if you feel like you're reaching for fruit because what you really want is a candy bar or dessert or whatever, it might be worth it to leave the fruit off your plate for a few days. - Don't be afraid to change up your portion sizes or even the proportions of your macros if you think it'll help, or if you want to test to see if something works better. I've found this to be especially important for me as I deal with my monthly cycle, because my dietary needs definitely change throughout the cycle and if I tweak things to meet those needs then I feel better overall. - Realize that "servings" in a recipe are based on a set standard, whereas a Whole30 "serving" is based on one's own hand. So unless you and your husband have the same size hands, one of you will undoubtedly have more food on their plate than the other if you're both following the suggested serving guidelines... and that's totally okay. I'll leave it at that, since I'm prone to write books if I let myself go
  8. Jihanna

    Day 28, Underfed, and Uninspired to Eat

    I LOVE those potatoes. We even love them as mashed potatoes, without going through the whole stuffing and re-baking process So delicious, and I'm so glad you're enjoying your food! Definitely happy for you to have come to the end of your 30 days, too!
  9. Jihanna

    Multivitamins with Reintroduction

    Sugar reintroduction effects typically fall along the lines of feeling anxious or "sped up", etc. If you increase by too much too quickly, it can definitely lead to headaches and the like. However, less than 4g in a gummy prenatal vitamin probably won't cause you any issue. The part I'd be worried about (for me personally) is that gummy vitamins are like candy for me, so I have to avoid them because it will lead me to wanting gummy bears, gumdrops, etc. For my own reintroduction, it was rather drawn out and I did start with sugar since I knew there could be sugar in things I introduced later on... maybe consider the gummy itself a reintroduced item, but instead of going back to total compliance before the next item is introduced, just keep taking the gummy if you don't experience adverse reactions.
  10. A few things are standing out as I read the post about meals... 1 - a serving of eggs is what we can hold in our hand. Your meal 1 protein of 2 eggs is a little on the light side, unless your hands are even smaller than mine (I can easily hold 3 eggs, 4 if I stretch). 2 - coffee can act as an appetite suppressant. If you're drinking it before or with your breakfast, it could actually be causing you to eat less than would be ideal. It sometimes becomes obvious because hunger comes too quickly (and strongly), well before next mealtime, but it might be that you're getting enough fat with meal 1 to compensate. 3 - the meals you describe would probably have me bloated if I ate that way every day, also. Cruciferous veggies tear me up if I eat too many of them too closely together, so having meal after meal with things like cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, etc. would fill me with gas and make me feel like a blimp. It's possible that you might experience similar sensitivities that could be looked at (I have a friend who can't eat onions and peppers without bloating for days, as an example). 4 - nuts and/or nut butter daily would be my undoing. Nuts wreck my hormones, throwing me totally out of balance - if I eat them on more than just a once-per-week basis (and not many then), they'll throw my cycle out of whack and noticeably affect my moods, too. 5 - the template suggests an "occasional" serving of fruit, which is basically the size of your closed fist. A banana every morning seems more than just occasional for me, but my perspective might be off on that because I only eat fruit once or twice each week (and I skip it entirely for the first week or two of any Whole30-type reset, to help make sure my sugar dragon gets/stays under control). Moving on -- I have no idea why you wouldn't experience Tiger Blood, unless you did and didn't realize that's how your body does it. Mine definitely doesn't look like what others posted, but I'm also nowhere near as active or "fit" as many people who gave reviews... it's one of the reasons why I didn't bother to look at the timeline at all for my 2nd time through; I wanted a more organic experience, without tainting it by "what to expect", as it were. The only other observation I've got is that you noted that you intend to live the Whole30 lifestyle going forward. I highly encourage you to go ahead and do the reintroduction phase, even if you have no intention of eating those foods (and even if you'd left them out while doing paleo previously). The reason I suggest this is that I've read where people find that certain foods left out of these types of programs actually help them feel better, lose bloat, and move into better health overall once they're brought back into their diets. I mean, dairy certainly doesn't work for me personally, but I know people who function best with it in their diet. I also know people who have better gut health with the inclusion of non-gluten grains, even though I have to limit my own intake. My point here is just that knowledge is power, and the ultimate victory moving forward from Whole30 is to be able to create the "WholeMe" -- a manageable and sustainable dietary plan that works for your specific body, with room for deviation when you're ready to make a "worth it" decision that falls outside your normal standards.
  11. Jihanna

    SIBO

    It's possible to do a low-FODMAP Whole30, yes. (Or an AIP Whole30, or low-carb Whole30, etc.) It's just a matter of removing the foods that Whole30 considers to be compliant but which would NOT belong based on the other part of the dietary plan. Much of what's avoided or limited by the low-FODMAP diet is already avoided by Whole30, and that overlap can be helpful. I'm not in any way a trained medical professional, just a girl with a search engine and a love of food... so I won't even begin to say what would or could work best for you personally. What I will say is that it's good that you're having this conversation with your doctor, and that Whole30 is a great place to start. You could always try doing Whole30 without onions (since you mentioned you suspect those treat you badly), and then see if you feel like you need to also pull back from fruits or green beans or whatever. It might even be worth asking your doc if they intend to have you do the more restrictive elimination, Whole30 plus low-FODMAP, or if they want you to try one and then the other. Even if you do find that doing a low-FODMAP Whole30 is your best bet for the elimination phase, remember that it's only until you have a good testing ground to reintroduce foods and see what you can add back to your daily intake later on (and which ones that should be approached with caution). There are a ton of foods remaining after taking away the high-FODMAP ones, so you'll still be able to work things around. Paleo Leap has a FODMAPS & Paleo page where they address the difference between FODMAP sensitivity and SIBO, as well as how they're similar (not to mention giving a wealth of info on the subject). They have a recipe index that can be filtered by low-FODMAP, but remember that since it's a Paleo site there are actually desserts and other stuff that shouldn't be done during Whole30. Unbound Wellness might be a good place to look for some inspiration. Although low-FODMAP isn't specifically addressed, Michelle is a certified nutritionist and does have recipes categorized by AIP, Low Carb, Paleo, and Whole30. The SIBO-specific diet is a bit more strict than Whole30, but looking over what should be avoided, it's still totally workable within the framework of a Whole30 (at least based on the food list I'm looking at right now). The hardest part would be avoiding the starchier vegetables like potatoes (white, colored, sweet), all starch powders (including arrowroot and tapioca), and so on... but even then, it does leave the ability to eat limited amounts of things like butternut squash. Anyway, my point here is -- don't despair. It always takes some time to wrap our brains around a new way of eating, but it CAN be done, and the point is to get you healthy... and your diagnosis helps you know which direction to move in food-wise.
  12. Jihanna

    Shirataki noodles?

    The easiest way to look at whether or not a "noodle" is compliant is to see if it's made with flour. If a compliant food is ground into a flour (or pulp, etc.) and then formed into noodles (or other pasta, like gnocchi), it's not going to be compliant. If a compliant food is cut in a way that makes it noodle-like (like spiralized zucchini), then it's compliant as an ingredient... but could still be used to make non-compliant dishes, of course. The difference is in whether it's a recreation or a substitution. A recreation is something like shirataki noodles or paleo hamburger buns. A substitution is something like spiralized sweet potato or using giant mushrooms to hold your burger and fixin's. Most substitutions aren't going to give you the same texture, mouth-feel, or psychological connection that you get from the "real thing", especially not within the framework of Whole30 compliance... whereas recreations are attempting to "re-create" the experience of the non-compliant food.
  13. Jihanna

    Day 28, Underfed, and Uninspired to Eat

    I'm sorry to hear it. Unfortunately, it's so very easy to eat overly processed foods that aren't as good for us... and does typically take more effort (or more money, if not both) to eat a healthier whole-food based diet. I get it, and I totally understand. I also totally agree that there shouldn't be any reason to settle for bland or just plain unsatisfying foods, even on Whole30 -- but it does take time and a bit of effort to break out of a psychological pattern of feeding our cravings for foods that don't support our health appropriately. Don't fret over not staying Whole30 after reintroduction. That's not really the whole point of the process. The point is to eliminate the major foods known to cause issues for a lot of people (and provide a pathway to addressing psychological relationships with foods as well, hence avoiding things that are SWYPO in general and for each individual), then see if those foods do in fact cause problems for your system specifically (through reintroducing them one at a time). If you learn that these foods don't cause problems, then great - use them in your daily diet and be well! It's still worth addressing the "worth it" factor on things that we crave that are less than great for us, though, even if they don't cause physical issues like bloating or pain. Anyway, back to a few thoughts. Do you have a slow cooker or electric pressure cooker? Both of those made my Whole30 so much easier because I could just add the ingredients and not babysit. There are also a number of shortcuts that you can take to cut down on prep time, like... - frozen bag of mirepoix = diced onion, celery, and carrot - frozen bag of Cajun mirepoix = diced onion, celery, and green bell pepper - canned crushed tomatoes + herbs = simple marinara base - lean meats don't have to be pre-cooked for slow cooker or pressure cooker meals (even spaghetti sauce or chili), as long as the total cook time is enough to get the meat cooked through. (I wouldn't suggest it with anything less than 80% lean ground beef, though I've done it with 73% - it just makes for more meat fat left behind, and that's not really appetizing to most people.) - frozen bag of cut potatoes My grocer's freezer aisles seriously saved my life, because I cook for 7 people and there's no way on earth I'd have managed all of the prep all the time. If you're only cooking for one and are able, then grabbing some pre-cut/pre-spiralized veggies in the produce aisles might also be an option (it would blow my budget, so I bought a spiralizer and do it myself). Whole30 took a bit of extra time, yes, even compared to the amount of prep I'd already been doing for my family. It cost a little more, though I've since learned ways to help keep those costs down some, because practice makes perfect after all But I also learned a great deal about how foods affect me and my personal relationship with food in general as well as specific ones that have been my go-to foods during mental or emotional stress... and for me, that journey was worth it. I really hope your journey proves worth it for you in the end, and that you're able to find food freedom within a framework that includes food you enjoy.
  14. Jihanna

    Day 28, Underfed, and Uninspired to Eat

    I'm curious... why have you eaten more bacon than usual, and why deprive yourself of carbs? There's no need to do either of those things on Whole30. And yes, changing up what you're eating can definitely help with food boredom, especially if you've gotten into a routine and eat the same basic things all the time. It's recommended to have a fist-sized portion of starchy veggies every day, in general. As a female (I'm assuming), you might need a little more than that on a normal basis, especially if you're anywhere near the period week of your cycle... more carbs are suggested for those who have mental health issues, also. I'm diagnosed with bipolar and do take medications; my daily starchy veggie intake is around a 1.5 fist-size normally, and I increase that to 2 the week before my period (and usually hold or increase again slightly during period week before dropping back to my normal level once it's over). When I feel like my mood is fluctuating downward, I increase my carbs a little, gradually... if I feel like I'm riding a little too high, I'll back it up a bit, still gradually. (That's not to say it works like that for everyone, or even all females or all with the same diagnosis, just sharing what works for me because it can give some context into how the suggested amounts might not be quite what you need.) Are there any specific foods that you really enjoy and could try to make work within the Whole30 framework, especially during your reintroduction? Or sauces that you enjoy and could maybe make (or find) a compliant substitute for? I know for me, I love Asian foods and flavors, so I made sure to stock up on coconut aminos, rice vinegar, and sesame seed oil so I could make quick stir-fry sauces and yummy salad dressings. I also bought a spiralizer so I could change up how I presented veggies, because there's actually a pretty big difference between baked sweet potatoes, roasted sweet potato cubes, and sweet potato noodles cooked in any way. It really helps with breaking up the monotony when I feel we're getting into a rut.
  15. I'm not positive on this, either, but my guess is that they mean added sugar in terms of how it's labeled on nutritional panels as well as anything you specifically add to your serving of foods and drinks. So eating a banana or some pork cooked with apples wouldn't count as added sugar, but putting sugar in your coffee or having a snack cake would count as added sugar. I couldn't tell you how the AHA's recommendation would translate into a real-food diet, though For me, I've learned that I function best when I just avoid the processed stuff entirely and keep sugars to a minimum, including fruit. Avoiding fruit (apart from in actual cooking, like to help flavor a meat) also means I can enjoy a spoonful of honey with my morning tea, which is slightly less palatable with the sweetener Whole30 philosophy technically applies during Whole30 rounds... after you complete your round, reintro included (so you have the knowledge you need to make informed food decisions), then it really comes down to what your personal philosophy shapes up to be. Food freedom is about building a "WholeMe" type of plan, which means it might include foods that Whole30 (or even Paleo) wouldn't normally include because they work well for your unique body.
  16. Try to realize that your body's been going without these foods for a month, and springing them back into your diet is bound to have some effect. Sometimes that effect is basically unnoticeable, and other times it's blatant. Also realize that our pre-Whole30 bodies were accustomed to living in a state of constant distress. We were used to always feeling some kind of discomfort, of some sort or another, whether we had a "reason" label to slap on the effect or not. Once we've done an elimination diet like Whole30, though, our body is "cleaned" of many things known to cause irritation/distress to many people. This means that if one (or more) food groups removed was causing distress, then you're going to see a much bigger sign of it now that you're reintroducing. Think of it like a pool of water. If there's a machine making waves at the far end, and you're feeling them hit against you, then you might not notice (as much) when someone jumps in the water nearby... it's just going to send more or slightly larger waves your way. But if you're in a perfectly calm pool, then someone jumps in, the resulting splash and/or waves will seem much larger and more noticeable. The point of the elimination phase is to make our system like the pool of calm water, and reintroduced foods can definitely cause some very noticeable effects when you're starting from a level baseline and are sensitive to them Remember that the purpose of reintroduction is to eat Whole30-compliant except for the single food you're introducing back in, which should be eaten at all meals for one day (or two if you want to spread it out)... then it's back to compliant for a few days to make sure you've recovered from the testing before you test the next food (or group) by itself. My suggestion would be to take good notes, get through the rest of your reintroduction. If you want to go back to the troublesome foods you already tested to have another go and see if continued consumption allows you to become accustomed to them again, then that's definitely an option. However, a little tough love and hopefully a bit of a light-bulb moment... If you had frequent brain fog with constantly low energy, bouts of anxiety and depression, and general overall ickyness... all of which vanished during Whole30... doesn't it make sense that there might be something there that you might want to continue avoiding, even if it's one of your favorite foods? For me, it's dairy, specifically cheese. I grew up with an allergy that I started ignoring as soon as I could, despite the fact that I dealt with eczema as a result. I didn't care, I had my cheese so I was totally okay with the rashes, the itching, etc. Fast forward to my first Whole30 reintro, when I decided to test dairy just because I wanted to see what would happen... and I learned that it not only set off my eczema, it was also the primary cause of my life-long issues with indigestion (including heartburn and reflux). From that, I can say without any trouble at all that dairy is simply not worth it for me about 95% of the time... occasionally, I'll decide to have "real cheese" on chili or a burger, but generally only if I'm eating away from home. I've learned to make some truly delicious non-dairy substitutes that I can always turn to if I feel like I'd like to have something cheese-like (though I don't do that during Whole30 or any other time when it's about habits as well as the food itself). You've gotten some amazing results, doing away with symptoms that I know (from experience) had to have been irritating and miserable... so take a deep breath and remind yourself that this is ultimately about your continued health and well-being, and that you're strong enough to make informed decisions based on what you learn about your body's unique sensitivities and needs. Obviously, you're an adult and can make your own dietary decisions, but making informed dietary decisions is really what Whole30 is all about. We obtain information through our reintroduction testing so that we can use that information to decide what our ongoing food freedom should look like... to be able to say something is or isn't worth it, based on how we know it affects us.
  17. I'm agreeing with everything so far, but will also put out there that there are some recipes floating around the net that make "cheese" from veggies or coconut milk. Some of these are actually intended to be served warm, but I've never had the guts to try them... I have made a few different types of coconut milk "cheese", though, and was quite pleased with that. You're basically going to want to search "vegan cheese potato" if you want the ones that melt well / are gooey when hot. There are a ton of options available out there without using any nuts or seeds. Just searching "vegan cheese" gives you a lot to search through so I've found that narrowing down the options a little bit helps me find things faster -- coconut milk, zucchini, and potato are the details that pertain to the recipes I've made or want to try at some point, so those are what stuck in my head. That said -- I definitely agree that if it's that texture and feel you're looking for, probably best to wait until after Whole30 (I definitely didn't make any of this stuff during my rounds, I know better!). Testing things out afterwards, though, now that's fun And stuffed mushrooms are definitely still delicious without gooey bits, so I'm glad you enjoyed yours!
  18. Jihanna

    Arbonne Digestion Plus

    I could be wrong, but as far as I can tell it's fine... I don't see anything that screams "non-compliant". Chicory, chamomile, and ginger are all compliant; bacillus coagulans is a beneficial bacteria; the enzymes all seem fine (including the papain from papaya and the bromelain from pineapple); the other ingredients also seem fine, since gum acacia is listed as allowed, tapioca starch is okay, and cellulose is plant fiber. My guess is that the tapioca starch is where the "added sugars" are coming from, since it's an "other ingredient" and is quite high in natural carbs/sugars. In general, though, we ignore the nutritional panel (calories and carbs with sub-items) and focus on the actual ingredients (chicory root powder on through the tapioca starch). A mod will certainly correct me if I'm mistaken
  19. Jihanna

    Day 8 looking for support!

    Carbs aren't necessarily an evil thing, we just have to be smart about how we use them. I found that I need more than the suggested 1 fist-sized serving of starchy veggies daily, and through trial and error learned that my "normal" need is about a half-fist in the AM and a whole-fist in the PM without any starchy veg at all between about 11a and 3p (because otherwise I'm headed toward sedation). My intake has to increase when I'm close to my menstrual week, and then can decrease again afterwards. I also learned that tweaking my macro ratios (as well a few specific foods) seems to help me fine-tune how my diet supports my bipolar meds; so if I start feeling a bit unstable, then I know I can tweak a few things and quite possibly bring things back into a calmer focus. Regarding nuts, please believe me when I say that not being able to have them isn't nearly as limiting as you might think. I relied too heavily on nuts (specifically nut bars) my first round (and learned the hard way that they're hell on my hormones), so in my second round I skipped nuts entirely... including not using any kind of nut-derived flours, oils, etc. I learned that coconut flour and cassava flour are my friends, that tapioca starch works much better for my family than arrowroot does, and that I can live without nut butter, nut-crusted meat, and so on. I was actually rather amazed at some of the new stuff I was trying, after making the decision that I'd be better off in the long run if I allowed myself to eliminate the nuts for later testing. For eggs... I'm not a huge fan most days, myself I get in the mood for them at times, but I'm usually happy to avoid them, opting instead for dinner leftovers as my breakfast As far as your physical symptoms go, try to make sure you're getting enough sleep, salting your food, and drinking plenty of water. From my own experience, I'm glad I wasn't afraid to go ahead and take a Tylenol if the pain became too much... I did try to address it naturally first (including calming teas, essential oils rubbed into the aching muscles, etc.) but often found that my body wasn't wanting to respond. I did find that without all the other junk in my system, I was able to dull the pain with about half my normal dose.
  20. As an add-on to my previous post -- it's also possible that your particular body actually needs something that's removed by Whole30. That's another reason why following up the elimination with reintroduction is so very important, because it lets you see the effects... sometimes that's a negative effect like constipation or headache, but sometimes it's actually positive like better bowel movements or improved sleep. For me, doing Whole30 was all about learning enough to create a sustainable way to move forward in my continued health journey. It's never been about losing weight (despite having plenty to lose), but rather about gaining better health. Unfortunately, there is no one diet that will work for everyone because we don't all have the same body system. The "perfect diet" for each individual will be an entirely individualized thing, and will even vary for that individual if the goal changes. Although you haven't achieved a great testing environment for the reintroduction, I would still suggest doing one simply so you can see if any of the eliminated food groups help to improve your overall well-being in all of this.
  21. I know quite a few people who follow the paleo lifestyle, rather than using it as a "diet" to lose weight... and none who have chosen it as a weight loss diet. Whole30 was not created as a weight-loss diet, according Melissa Hartwig Urban herself. If we can't believe the co-creator of the diet on that particular matter, then I'm not sure what we should do. Weight loss does often occur for those who follow Whole30. Sometimes this is a positive side effect, and for others it's actually bad so they find themselves trying to stuff in more calories to help maintain a healthy weight during the program. This is an elimination diet, plain and simple. For most people, the first round is used to prepare for a reintroduction phase to help determine food sensitivities or other similar issues, which can help them make informed decisions about their diet in the days to come... and eventually many will come back for a "reset" when they feel they've gotten derailed, just to bring themselves back into balance and remind themselves of how much better they feel when eating in a way that promotes better health. Again, it's entirely possible that there are things that are compliant for Whole30 but don't work for you personally. For me, it's worth knowing things that affect me badly... like how I'm allergic to dairy and that even includes ghee (for me), or that eating 3 meals in a row that include cruciferous vegetables will make me feel like a blimp, or that I can't sleep well if I drink coffee after 3pm. I also have to keep reminding myself to drink water, because I'm really bad about not getting enough... the official suggestion is to drink at least half our weight number in ounces (so for me that'd be just under a gallon per day), so my current goal is to reach that intake before I even do another round -- that way it's already habit, and will be easy to continue I truly do hope you find something that works for you, because you deserve to feel good and have a positive self-image.
  22. I'm going to second that it's not a weight-loss diet, per se, despite the fact that many do lose at least something while following it. From what you're describing, though, it sounds like there might actually be some food sensitivities/issues going on with you that are compliant to Whole30 but simply don't work for your personal body (personally, I found that I need more starchy veg on a daily basis than is written into the suggestions, and up to around twice as much depending on where I'm at in my cycle). Playing with how much you're getting macro-wise and/or removing specific compliant foods that seem to be a trigger for symptoms might be a good thing to do, at least in the time you have remaining since I doubt you'll be extending. It might be worth looking into the low-FODMAP diet for more information on how compliant foods could be causing issues nonetheless... if you're interested in digging deeper on it. If you're really just interested in losing weight, however, I wish you well in finding a weight-loss dieting method/system that works for you.
  23. Jihanna

    Snacks for Braces

    While it is definitely better not to snack, sometimes it's necessary in order to bridge the gap between two meals... however, if you're going to snack, then I definitely suggest making it a "mini-meal" instead of just a handful of one type of food. A small salad of diced Roma tomatoes, diced sweet onions, and diced cucumbers. Toss it with a bit of homemade vinaigrette (or top it with some compliant ranch) and it's delicious. I often add a chopped up boiled egg (for protein) and serve with avocado or black olives (for fat). Veggie peels. Just use a vegetable peeler to peel off thin slices of carrots, cucumbers (or zucchini, yum!), radishes, etc. and dip them in a compliant dressing of choice. Add some boiled egg slices (or take bites out of a whole one) or chopped up bits of chicken to make it a mini-meal. If you find veggie peels to be too stiff, you can always steam them slightly (or for watery veggies like zucchini, dash some salt on and let sit for a few minutes to soften them up). Roast up some veggies and have them on hand for throwing together an easy mini-meal. These could be eaten with some leftover meat or tossed into a skillet to fill out a frittata. Make chicken (or turkey) poppers, like these: https://unboundwellness.com/bacon-ranch-chicken-poppers/ Hope that helps, and good luck
  24. Jihanna

    Amy's Log for 2020

    Triggers... stress, dairy, cold/dry weather... maybe other stuff I haven't pin-pointed. I didn't realize the dairy connection until my first Whole30, when it cleared a bit even though it was still winter and then popped back up as soon as I reintroduced dairy products. I'd known that dairy caused rashes for years, though, just hadn't realized that the little "deep blisters" on my hands were eczema (I call them that because they look like little blisters that are sunken under the skin). I guess I'd always thought of eczema as rashiness on faces and arms or something, I don't know. I use Gold Bond eczema relief lotion (with colloidal oatmeal) on my hands and feet daily, have been for about a month now, and it's helping to keep them much better moisturized. I especially have to make sure to use it shortly after a warm shower, otherwise I get skin shedding off like crazy... and once they dry out, they'll be ragged and catch on things, ripping skin off and causing open wounds. It's definitely not pretty, and I've worn massive bandages across portions of my feet on more days than I can count. I think that's why the cold/dry weather affects me so harshly, because it just makes the drying out happen more quickly. I'm seriously thinking of doing another round of elimination followed by extensive reintro testing, though, maybe once things settle down at work and we're on set schedules (my manager is trying to make that happen but we've still got several things in transition), so I'll know exactly what I need to prepare for in terms of when and what I'm cooking and whether or not I'll have to eat it while working (since we don't get a real break). I'll definitely try to remember to let you ladies know if I discover anything else that sets me off, and might actually craft it as an AIP-Whole30 just to see what happens.
  25. Jihanna

    Amy's Log for 2020

    I just read this to my husband, saying it sounds like me. I'm terrified of getting lice, because I DO have seborrheic dermatitis which, in my case, means lots and lots of dandruff... which means lots and lots of white stuff in my hair, ugh. It's always itchy, and I can convince myself at times that I feel something crawling. Hubby is against the idea of checking my hair for me unless I see something on one of the kids, because it's so difficult to get past my dandruff. I've got a metal nit-picker comb that I use to run over my scalp and through my hair probably once every week or two, just to be safe. Seborrheic dermatitis isn't always horrid. I mean, it's dandruff, lol. Sometimes the symptoms can get worse than other times, though, just like basically any condition. When I was younger, I routinely had big patches of crusty stuff caused by oil buildup, and that could at times lead to scalp sores... but now that I'm older, it's generally just really bad dandruff regardless of what shampoo I use. It's one of the things I deal with, though, as part of my eczema (I get dyshidrotic eczema on my hands and feet, and seborrhea on my scalp). That actually makes me want to do another elimination round at some point soon, to see if my dandruff is affected. I didn't think to pay any attention to that in previous rounds! Silly me!