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Halfway through and still have acne, bloating, hunger- help me!


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Hey everyone,


I'm a 23 year old female, and this is my first honest shot at the Whole 30, after many half-ass attempts before.  As Day 13 is nearing an end, I'm wondering if I'm missing something.


I've been 100 % on track with Whole 30 compliant choices, but I thought that by now, I would be seeing more changes.

My only difficulties have come from eating a little too late at night, and I don't know if my portions are correct. 


I've also still got new instances of acne showing up on my face, bloating at most times of the day, and now my stomach feels kind of upset after I eat anything, not just non-paleo items. I'm not "springing out of bed" nor falling asleep super quickly, and I am getting hungrier sooner than I would think after a meal of 2 eggs cooked in ghee, and a huge portion of sauteed cabbage, for example.

And, though this might be too much information, my trips to the bathroom are not as 'solid' as I would expect. No diarrhea or anything, but it stills seems kind of "fluffy" for what I would expect from a clean diet.


I need to lose about 20 lbs, and obviously that's not going to happen in two weeks, but I thought for sure that I would start to see some changes in the way my clothes are fitting. I didn't come from super-unhealthy eating habits before hand nor do I have 30 years of bad habits to overcome like other folks do... so maybe this 30 days isn't going to give me a dramatic change? 


I am going to complete all of my 30 days, I have at least made some awesome changes in the types of foods I'm eating now and saying no to junk. However, I'm not experiencing any life-altering results, and am getting frustrated by that.


Any advice is very much appreciated!





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You might want to add an extra egg to your breakfast or a starchy veggie to fill you up (I can hold 3 eggs but I eat a starch with breakfast and I'm satiated for 4-6 hours). How much water are you drinking? You may be mistaking hunger for thirst. Good luck! And post a log so others can give you advice.

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Hi Amy, here goes:


B- Trader Joe's chicken sausage, 1 tbsp paleo mayo, sauteed cabbage and broc (in .5 tbsp coco oil), one cup coffee

L- 5 oz grassfed ground beef, 1/2 med sweet potato, sauteed onion, cauiflower and carrot "rice"

D- lamb Bratwurst, 3 pieces asparagus, red cabbage (all out at a restaurant). That wasn't enough food, so I came home and had 2.5 oz ground turkey (conventional, unfortunately), cabbage, then a mixture of raw unsweet cacao powder, .25 cup coco flour, .25 cup unsweet shredded coconut, a few hazelnuts and .25 cup coco milk (I usually don't do this, but was frustrated with the day, so attempted to mix up something NOT-meat/veg but also not sweet. Though I know I shouldn't comfort myself with food)


- exercise: over 10,000 steps of walking

-sleep: I don't get to bed until late, like 1:00 am, but set my alarm for at least 9 am.

-stressors: I've just started my Master's degree, and the larger work load is starting. I'm also in the process of applying for part-time jobs which can be stressful


Day 2:


B: 2 eggs cooked in ghee, 1 small-ish crown of broccoli, spices, 1 cup coffee

L: handful raw cherry tomatoes, 2 small skinless chicken thighs, 1/2 avocado

Snack: .25 cup unsweeet coconut flakes, .25 cup almonds

D: 5 oz Trader Joes Turkey burger, mustard, sweet potato soup (made with sweet potatoes, coco milk, onions, spices- probably had 1 medium potato's worth of the soup for dinner) 


-exercise: pm workout of 20 min higher intensity interval cardio on the arc trainer, 17 min circuit of bicep curls, 35 lb kettlebell swings, step-ups. 6,000 steps walking.

-sleep: midnight- 8:30 am, but hit snooze many times (it's interesting, I feel pretty tired when I wake up, but when I actually get out of bed, I get more awake)

-stressors: Stress of finances w/ student loans, budget. I'm also in a very long distance relationship right now as my boyfriend is studying in Australia for a year since June, so not being with him is stressful.


Do you need any more information?? Thank you for your help. 

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First off, congrats on making it almost to the halfway point!  Second, carrot rice?  Brilliant!


A few general observations about food:

  • Measure your protein by the size of the palm of your hand, rather than in ounces - this helps to get the sense of proportion that you need for a Whole30.  If eggs are your only protein source, you eat the number of eggs you can hold in your hand - usually three or four.  If you're hungry, eat two palm-size portions of protein.
  • Fat that's used in cooking mostly stays in the pan, so usually it's not counted as part of your fat allotment for the meal.  Think of a thumb-size portion of fat as your minimum for the meal, and aim higher, possibly much higher, if you're hungry.
  • Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli and cabbage, can cause bloating unless cooked very well.  Frankly, I avoid them myself because I have not yet discovered a way of cooking them that keeps me from bloating. This is unfortunate since I love roasted broccoli, but it certainly does not love me back!! 
  • Nuts, nut butters, and for some people, coconut butters and flakes, can cause bloating.
  • If you need a snack, make it a mini-meal involving protein and fat, following template portions.  And then, the next day, see if upping the amount you eat for breakfast helps curb the hunger.  If not, no problem, just eat a mini meal.  We really do want you to eat when you're hungry, rather than snack and hope for the best.  Eat up!


Keep in mind, too, that stress has a huge impact on your body.  Life stressors can cause bloating (I'd give photographic evidence of my tummy from last year when my stress level was intense, but nobody wants to see that so you're welcome), acne outbreaks, and all sorts of other mischief. 


Also, getting to bed at midnight or after is really really hard on your circadian rhythm and your cortisol levels.  Just know that if this is something you are doing out of necessity, that you'll need to compensate, say, by exercising less, or just be aware that your body will be feeling the impact.  Every hour you sleep before midnight counts.  If you're doing it because you're still thinking you have a teenager's circadian rhythm, I'm willing to bet that you've outgrown that, and you could do with an earlier bedtime (would 10:00 shock you? hehe).


You may not be able to diminish all stressors (again, I know this well from all of last year, grrr); and you may or may not be in a position where you can adjust your sleep patterns.  But anything you can do there will help.


And try eating a bit more protein, some more fat, and some different, well-cooked vegetables.


And let us know how it goes and if you need further help.  Browsing the forums can sometimes answer questions or give you recipe or cooking ideas, but you can always post a follow-up question here too.

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