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Hello! I've just started the Whole 30. I'm noticing strong cravings for nuts, but also a bit of digestive distress when I eat them. I also know that digestive distress is a common side effect at the beginning of the program.

 

The obvious answer is to just not eat them, but the cravings are very intense. I read in It Starts With Food that the physical shape of nuts can be problematic for those with digestive imbalances. 

 

I'm wondering if anyone has had a similar experience with nuts + digestive distress, and also would appreciate any suggestions. I add a healthy amount of fat into each meal and am wondering if the craving stems from not enough protein. 

 

I worry about adding in eggs because of what I read in the auto-immune protocol section of ISWF. 

 

Thank you in advance. 

 

Update: I didn't specifically mention that I am a newly diagnosed celiac and have a very sensitive, often cranky gut. 

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Is it that you're craving salty nuts or just any plain nut? I find that salty roasted cashews are a food with no brakes for me, but I can pass on raw almonds. So which type do you crave? Any type?

 

If it's salty ones, try adding some high quality sea salt to your meals (more than you are) and see if that helps. Your body might just want the minerals it's missing.

 

In addition, nuts are fairly high in magnesium, which if you've just cut out grains (or at least gluten) from your diet, you can easily be short in. You could try supplementing magnesium (epsom salt baths/foot soaks, or magnesium lotion are fabulous for it since your body absorbs it easily through the skin, and will get more out of that method than eating it, but eating it works too) and see if that helps.

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These are all great tips -- thank you for sharing. 

 

I crave plain raw unsalted nuts (mainly cashews and macadamias) -- I especially crave them with raisins, which I believe to be a result of a sugar habit. While I don't consume a lot of sugar even when I'm not adhering to food protocols, I still find myself reaching for this snack when I want a little something sweet. 

 

Great thoughts about the magnesium component -- do you have any magnesium lotions you recommend? 

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Yeah, I tend to eat raisins with raw almonds. The combination, to me, reminds me of my dad's raisin bran muffins (which I'll never be able to eat again, unfortunately, because of the gluten...sigh...).

 

I'm not currently using a magnesium lotion so I'm not sure on the brand. A friend of mine makes it (

http://www.modernalternativemama.com/blog/2012/12/17/monday-health-wellness-magnesium-lotion/#.UtceLJCL-1E) or this brand is supposed to be pretty good - http://www.ancient-minerals.com/products/magnesium-lotion/.

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Yeah, I tend to eat raisins with raw almonds. The combination, to me, reminds me of my dad's raisin bran muffins (which I'll never be able to eat again, unfortunately, because of the gluten...sigh...).

 

I'm not currently using a magnesium lotion so I'm not sure on the brand. A friend of mine makes it (

http://www.modernalternativemama.com/blog/2012/12/17/monday-health-wellness-magnesium-lotion/#.UtceLJCL-1E) or this brand is supposed to be pretty good - http://www.ancient-minerals.com/products/magnesium-lotion/.

Do you eat this combination while undergoing a Whole 30? Aren't those food combinations that are associated with good memories the hardest to not crave? 

 

Thanks for the recommendations -- I'm definitely intrigued by this concept. 

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I did eat the almond/raisin as an emergency snack food during my first Whole 30, and barely ever touched them. Now that is my usual "snack/emergency food" for when meetings extend through lunch until 3:00 (like today...) to help my breakfast to last (SP hash and eggs did last a good while, though).

 

I think that the difference for me, anyway, is that I am not eating them because I want to eat muffins. I eat them because I am almost always magnesium deficient and almonds are a decent source of it (at just under 1% of your daily Mag intake per almond). The raisins are because I really don't like the taste of almonds and would rather starve than eat them plain. The reminiscing is a perk, and really is only a vague reminiscence (because raw ones taste less like it than the blanched/slivered ones I had for a little while).

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I'm not a diagnosed celiac (couldn't complete the gluten challenge), but gluten makes me really sick.

 

I would bet money that it's magnesium and trace elements you're missing, that are behind the cravings. You can get a blood test for the specifics, but magnesium is a common deficiency with gut troubles, as is Vitamin D3. I've found Epsom Salts the only external source of magnesium that agrees with me (bath with it). A lot of the lotions are cut with something that my skin does not like at all.

 

Nuts do contain phytates and enzyme inhibitors that effect some people more than others. You may find soaking your nuts (and throwing out the water) may help (Detoxinista has instructions for making almond milk). Most nut butters are made with unsoaked nuts. Cashews also have an unusual compound in them which some people have trouble with, so you could try swapping them out for almonds or another nut.

 

Do you eat the nuts as a snack on an empty stomach? Or just with the template?

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I'm not a diagnosed celiac (couldn't complete the gluten challenge), but gluten makes me really sick.

 

I would bet money that it's magnesium and trace elements you're missing, that are behind the cravings. You can get a blood test for the specifics, but magnesium is a common deficiency with gut troubles, as is Vitamin D3. I've found Epsom Salts the only external source of magnesium that agrees with me (bath with it). A lot of the lotions are cut with something that my skin does not like at all.

 

Nuts do contain phytates and enzyme inhibitors that effect some people more than others. You may find soaking your nuts (and throwing out the water) may help (Detoxinista has instructions for making almond milk). Most nut butters are made with unsoaked nuts. Cashews also have an unusual compound in them which some people have trouble with, so you could try swapping them out for almonds or another nut.

 

Do you eat the nuts as a snack on an empty stomach? Or just with the template?

Hi, 

 

Thanks for your feedback. I was recently tested for vitamin D and, not surprisingly, my levels were extremely low. I've incorporated a supplement with my MDs help, but recently ran out. (Good reminder to get more.)

 

Regarding the magnesium lotions, I was recently given this magnesium spray that irritated my skin pretty severely. I imagine the lotion would do the same. I'm going to try the epsom salt baths this week. 

 

More often than not, we soak and dehydrate our nuts; however, I haven't been as strict about this throughout my Whole 30 days. I typically eat them if I find myself in an emergency situation, which I'm working to avoid during my remaining Whole 30. 

 

My gut is still in the healing phase and I have a list of 60+ food sensitivities in the meantime. I'm slowly able to add more and more foods on that list back in as I continue to heal my gut; however, certain proteins have been completely off limits. So, I am making the connection that not enough protein could be a factor in these intense nut cravings, too. For example, beef, chicken, duck, pork -- all of these are off limits. And I'm a little afraid of eggs after reading the auto-immune protocol. Sardines and salmon and sea bass don't sound very appealing in the morning. 

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If the magnesium spray is an oil, then it would likely cause skin irritation. What you mix into the oil to make mag oil is a salt, and so you're essentially drying out your skin by putting it on. It's why people make mag lotion - you mix the drying stuff into a moisturizing thing (like shea or cocoa butter, beeswax, etc.) so that it won't irritate your skin. Most people who have a problem with magnesium spray are fine with lotions. I just prefer baths because, well, it's an excuse to take a bath.

 

Wild-caught fish will also have good levels of Vitamin D.

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If the magnesium spray is an oil, then it would likely cause skin irritation. What you mix into the oil to make mag oil is a salt, and so you're essentially drying out your skin by putting it on. It's why people make mag lotion - you mix the drying stuff into a moisturizing thing (like shea or cocoa butter, beeswax, etc.) so that it won't irritate your skin. Most people who have a problem with magnesium spray are fine with lotions. I just prefer baths because, well, it's an excuse to take a bath.

 

Wild-caught fish will also have good levels of Vitamin D.

Oh good! I've been enjoying wild-caught salmon daily. 

 

Good to know about the difference between oil vs. lotion. I love any excuse to take a bath, but also enjoy moisturizing. My skin is prone to dryness due to years of poor nutrient absorption (I'd imagine). 

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I'm no good with the lotions or sprays, all the oils I've found contain some kind of preservative and I think that's what I have the reaction to.

 

I take a magnesium tablet as well, my brand in Australia is MagMin and it's doctor recommended. I take the maximum dose on the bottle (6 tablets). If I skip it for a few days, I get symptoms of deficiency again, so my body is clearly using it :D

 

I minimise my egg intake a bit, but I've found I seem to handle the organic eggs I get, I do feel a bit funny if I switch to the other kind, which I suspect is a flow-on effect from the grain. Pretty sure all the chickens here eat some kind of grain.

 

I eat both fresh and canned salmon for breakfast quite a bit :) I have a salmon pattie recipe which is quite breakfasty, especially baked into a muffin pan.

 

Can you have other kinds of seafood, the non-fish kind?

 

Coconut oil is also good for the skin, both in direct application and eating it :)

 

Have you tried bone broth from the offlimit animals? Some people find it helps their gut adjust. I have lots of chicken broth and I love beef osso bucco (full of bone marrow and I slow cook it so it's a broth/marrow bonus). I also find the bone broths very good for settling the gut. I haven't been drinking it with breakfast yet, need to up my production first :)

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I'm no good with the lotions or sprays, all the oils I've found contain some kind of preservative and I think that's what I have the reaction to.

 

I take a magnesium tablet as well, my brand in Australia is MagMin and it's doctor recommended. I take the maximum dose on the bottle (6 tablets). If I skip it for a few days, I get symptoms of deficiency again, so my body is clearly using it :D

 

I minimise my egg intake a bit, but I've found I seem to handle the organic eggs I get, I do feel a bit funny if I switch to the other kind, which I suspect is a flow-on effect from the grain. Pretty sure all the chickens here eat some kind of grain.

 

I eat both fresh and canned salmon for breakfast quite a bit :) I have a salmon pattie recipe which is quite breakfasty, especially baked into a muffin pan.

 

Can you have other kinds of seafood, the non-fish kind?

 

Coconut oil is also good for the skin, both in direct application and eating it :)

 

Have you tried bone broth from the offlimit animals? Some people find it helps their gut adjust. I have lots of chicken broth and I love beef osso bucco (full of bone marrow and I slow cook it so it's a broth/marrow bonus). I also find the bone broths very good for settling the gut. I haven't been drinking it with breakfast yet, need to up my production first :)

What is the salmon pattie recipe? I'd love to see that! 

 

What other kinds of fish are you thinking of? Growing up in Alaska, I ate largely salmon, halibut, and crab -- are you talking other crustaceans? 

 

I have been dying to try bone broth -- living in Oklahoma now, finding ingredients shouldn't be too difficult! However beef is a big irritator to my gut, so I wonder how the actual product would react once I consume it? I know bone broth is highly recommended for healing gut imbalances...just wondering if the fact that I'm so reactive to beef would make any difference? 

 

Truthfully, I do best when I'm consuming very little animal protein. This has been determined after two years of trial and error. I always add in animal protein because I do want to include it -- however, my body responds too strongly in many cases to enjoy it. (Salmon is the exception.)

 

But, beans are also very pro-inflammatory for me. So I feel stuck in quite the pickle. I've thought about incorporating whey, but my MD highly recommends that I don't and I trust her judgment. (I'm also highly sensitive to dairy.)

 

Grains create a lot of discomfort as well, so rice protein powders are out per MDs suggestion and my own experimentation. 

 

I'm thinking of adding in pea protein? Or hemp? Not sure which would be least offensive. 

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This is the salmon pattie recipe (Aussie sized can of salmon, in case that's confusing) - I like it with spring onions instead of the herbs (I also make it two ways, either patties cooked in a frypan, or in muffin cup tray with plenty of coconut oil (much less fiddly).

http://www.ladyhomemade.com/2012/11/14/quick-salmon-patties-and-whole30-week-two/

 

Dr Jack Kruse has a bunch of info on what he calls "non-skeletal meats", which includes the kinds of seafood without skeletons, like scallops, prawns, oysters, etc as well as organ meats. This group has a slightly different nutrient profile, including being higher in good stuff like magnesium. Crab is quite expensive here, but prawns can be quite cheap, especially frozen ones.

 

It's worth trying a beef bone broth (wait awhile if you don't want to just yet) and seeing if you get the same reaction. I'd particularly try to get 100% grassfed beef, in case it's something they're eating.

 

I can't eat beans either. Only one have I ever failed to have a reaction that was noticeable, so I just avoid them altogether. Pea protein powder is a legume I think, you might be better off with an egg white one.

I would avoid whey like the plague, I think a lot of the gut problems I have now are from my high whey consumption on doctor prescribed diets in the past. I think it gave me leaky gut, or made it much worse if I had it already.

 

Give yourself plenty of time to heal, as the damage really takes a toll. My gut is very different now, almost a year down the track, but it's still not good.

 

I've found Kombucha very helpful, but I used to get one from a market (homemade) that didn't help, the commercial one I get now is very good (we have very few commercial ones here in Aus) and fizzy, the other one was very flat and sweet.

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