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Salt, Spices and Fat Question


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I am just starting the Whole30 and am getting the hang of it, however, I just wanted to confirm a couple of things.


I am on day 2 and yesterday I made the following:



Two eggs scrambled with spinach and red peppers, t

Tablespoon of ghee for cooking


Cup of blueberries

1/2 avocado



Salad of arugula, radicchio, belgian endive, grape tomatoes, 1 grilled chicken breast, 1/2 avocado Dressing of 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar (naturally occurring sulfites)

3 small spoons of organic raw almond butter



Lamb loin with cumin, cinnamon, coriander, ras el hanout (states 200 mg sodium per tsp on jar), salt, pepper and sherry vinegar (has naturally occuring sulfites). The other spices does not state how much sodium is on the jar.

Mashed sweet potatoes with the creme from canned coconut milk, ghee, salt, pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Shitake mushrooms, spinach and scallions sauteed in ghee.



I woke up feeling pretty puffy even though I also drank 64 ounces of water. I did weigh myself even though I know we are not supposed to, and I found out I gained a 1 1/2 lbs.


So...I was wondering is there a rule of thumb on the sodium intake for salt and spices or did it look like I overdid it on some other things? I generally do not use much salt. The jars I have are primarily from Spice Islands and some organic brands from whole foods, but most of them do not state ingredients or sodium amounts.


Also, for the fat intake per meal. Is it only for one type of fat per meal, such as if you use a tablespoon of ghee, that is it or is it okay to use two versions (such as a tablespoon of ghee for cooking and then a 1/2 of an avocado) or do people use even more type of fat servings than that? I am assuming two is normal, such as using ghee for cooking and then 1/2 of an avocado and that is it. I am trying to lose ten pounds in addition to eating clean, so any rule of thumb would be appreciated.


I have also read that people wanting to lose weight need to watch the nuts and fruit, so I am not going to be eating more than 1-2 servings of fruit a day and maybe not eat the almond butter much.



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One reason you shouldn't weigh yourself is because it makes you question your food choices too much, as you are doing now. 1.5 pounds is nothing. You can fluctuate several pounds within a day. The food you listed looks pretty spot-on to me, although you probably need more than 2 eggs for breakfast (serving size = as many whole eggs as you can hold in your hand). As for the fat, some of the ghee will be left behind in the pan, so it's perfectly OK to add a 2nd fat to your meal. Personally I stay away from fruit and nut butters because I have tend to overeat them. The portions you have listed for those seem fine.  Maybe just continue on and in a few weeks (or after the 30 days are up) you can start making adjustments to portion sizes and/or cut back on fats a little if you're still having issues with your weight. Different things work for different people. You need to give it some time (more than 1-2 days) to see what works for you.

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If your spice blends do not have ingredients on them (I'm assuming you're talking about blends, since otherwise they wouldn't need an ingredients listing), then they should be suspect. If they are single ingredient spices (a bottle of parsley flakes, or ground coriander seed), then the sodium should be negligible (excepting things like celery salt, of course). 


As a note on your breakfast, you should double your eggs and halve your blueberries. A full cup of blueberries is a lot! (in my mind, at least). Do the veggies in your scramble comprise 1-2 cups of veg? If not, you should bump up the veg, and cut the fruit if need be. A full cup of blueberries would be enough of a sugar hit to make me pack on water weight.


Speaking of, if you're in any kind of pain, that inflammation can also add to your weight. 


Also also, one of the reasons they say don't weigh yourself is because the first two weeks, your body is readjusting and there's a likelihood that you'll get some bloating and possible puffiness, particularly as you start to detox (from whatever your body is holding... there are a lot of options). 


It could also be that you ate dinner too late for your body. Or your body prefers x food at x time. Or there's a storm system coming in. Etc. There are so many options for why you might put on 1.5 lbs (which I can do in the course of a day, no problemo) that to try to troubleshoot it... well, that way lies madness.

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if you were eating the SAD prior to starting your whole30 there is almost no way you could even come close to eating the amount of salt you were before. it would be very very hard to get "too much" salt eating this way.


and I agree with all the other people, don't weigh yourself! promise no more, ok?! I did not lose any weight at all until the final week or so (I didn't actually weigh myself but I'm quite certain by way of how my clothes felt). don't think about any of this, just eat this way for 30 days! :)

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Thanks for the input!


I was eating a cup of blueberries because I was always told that one serving of berries is one cup. Obviously, that is not correct. Can you advise me what a good serving of blueberries, blackberries and cut up strawberries would be? 


Also, just so I understand, you recommend I go from eating 2 eggs to 4 eggs and that is not too much? I probably have been using one cup of vegetables - half spinach and half red peppers. Sometimes, I do mushrooms too. 


I can certainly cut the fruit if it is better to bump up the eggs and vegetables. 


The spices were single items with no ingredients, so they must just be that one spice. I was just making sure that those kinds do not have added salt.


Also, I did eat later in the evening - about 7:30 p.m., so that probably has one thing to do with being so puffy the next morning.


It sounds like maybe I need to eliminate the fruits if I feel water retention and can do that. And, since it is the first week, maybe I am just bloated from my body adjusting. However, this is day three and I have lost no weight at all, but I will keep on moving forward!



Thanks for all of your help!

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I don't know that the fruit and the water retention necessarily go hand in hand. It really depends on how your body handles sugar. These days, my belly gets rumbly if I have too much fruit all on its own - I need to have it interspersed with the rest of my meal. But, I know that my body gets hinky with sugar.

As far as the berries, I think that mixed berries, a cup is probably fine as a serving. Some sites say 1 cup is a serving (from a blueberry growers site, so I'm a little suspicious), some say 1/2 cup (healthyeating.sfgate.com). Mostly, people here say you should have your meat, fat, and veg to fill your plate, and if it crowds out the fruit, so be it. 


If you're on day three and have lost no weight... THAT MEANS YOU'RE WEIGHING YOURSELF which is a no-no on your Whole30. If you're going to follow the rest of the rules, might as well follow that one. No more weighing. Get someone in your house (or a visiting friend) to hide the scale. You will likely not see "results" in terms of weight loss until you're about halfway in. Have you read Robin's timeline? http://whole9life.com/2013/08/revised-timeline/


FWIW, I have been going mad not weighing myself (it was my way to know if my body liked or didn't like something I was eating, 'cause I'd pack on water/inflammation weight in response to unhappy-to-body foods). I told my husband I wasn't supposed to weigh myself for this... and he hid the scale. 


Also, now that I'm thinking about it, you gained 1.5 lbs on day 2. That could _easily_ be delayed reaction from something you ate before day 1. Or if you drank more or less water, or... anything. 


So, go carefully with the fruit. Try to keep your meals to the template (and if it's too much food, eat what you can, save the rest for a mini meal). DON'T WEIGH YOURSELF. Or take measurements. Or calorie counting. Or anything else. Learn to trust your body. If you're hungry, eat. If you're not hungry, don't eat. Weight loss will not happen if you're not feeding your body enough food. 


One final thing - your dressing. I always learned that it was 2:1 oil to vinegar. You can get some more fat in (fat is good!) your diet if you switch up your ratios. If you prefer the taste of your ratios, then don't bother. But if it's a holdover from "omg fat bad", you can switch it up. :) If you have an immersion blender, start 1/4 to 1/3 cup of vinegar (add a little salt here, or any fresh herbs if you like), start the blender, then start streaming in the oil until you're well above double the amount of vinegar. If what you're blending in has measurements, I blend and emulsify until I get at least 1 cup of dressing, if not more. It's creamy and tasty. You can add a few shakes of ground mustard (mustard powder), which has a little natural lecithin (like eggs do) which helps to hold a successful emulsion together. Seriously, my vinaigrettes are solid and thick, like mayo. :D 

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Fruit servings...don't go by cups. Go by your hands. You should be able to have a small handful of fruit, no more. I think for me it works out to 1/2 cup or so by my hand. Half an apple or so would be about right, or a small apple. There are times, post-W30, that I will use fruit if I have a light veggie breakfast (if I'm eating at work, where if I want veggies in my eggs, I end up getting powdered eggs...yeah...). I can get hashbrowns which helps, but fresh fruit is how I help to round that out (and then I have a veggie-heavy lunch).


Real life solutions, I guess.

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I don't know if it just happens to me but I find when I eat poorly then switch to a diet with lots of veggies, especially leafy greens, I get bloated/full-feeling the first few days while my body tries to adjust to the healthy changes.  You were only on day 2 so I would think that could have been the effect.  Usually, after a few days, I feel so much better!

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