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W30 #4: the "Whole-until-my-eczema-disappears" experiment


Markette

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This is my 4th W30, and TBH, I'm not sure how long this one will last: maybe 30 days, maybe a whole lot more, maybe a few less.

 

Each of my W30s has had a completely different goal.  My first was an attempt to further identify food sensitivities after transitioning to a strict paleo lifestyle years before and still experiencing discomfort.  My second was in support of a dear friend and to start the school-year with good eating habits (I used to teach).  My third was a solo W30 to see if I could adult without any local support (turns out I can).  And this one, number 4, is because I've been dealing with an uncomfortable itchy rash that I think is eczema exacerbated by fall allergies, falling off my bike and face-planting into ice cream and cocktails a whole bunch this summer, and unintended weekly exposure to my biggest food allergy.

 

Anyway, I know that eating well is the most important thing I can do to keep myself functioning the way I want to be.  Once the itchy skin morphed into blisters on my hands and feet, followed by anywhere my clothes are tight (bra straps, waistline, socks, legging seams, etc.) it was clear.  It's time to W30, kids. Once I made it successfully through Day 1 last Thursday (which took 3 tries, not gonna lie), it was game on.

 

This time, though, I'm modifying my expectations.  I know I can abstain for 30 days from anything I want to: I've done it three times.  I know I can hit ketosis if I want to: I did it on accident during my 3rd W30.  I know that dairy makes me bloat and break out, and that gluten upsets my stomach for days; rice doesn't bother me, and corn in moderation isn't a problem for me either.  This time, I'm not specifically whole 30ing... I've been describing it as Whole-until-my-eczema-is-gone-ing.

 

It's Day 5 already, and I'm noticing an improvement.  Fewer blisters erupt each day, and the old injuries (I scratched myself until I bled in a bunch of places) are starting to heal.  By taking daily Epsom salt baths and rubbing my entire body with a DIY lotion I made out of coconut oil and vitamin E oil, I can manage the symptoms and haven't had anything prescribed topically. Because I've been so uncomfortable, I've had no interest in breaking my W30.  I've been able to smell non-compliant bacon cooking and decline; I hung out with friends who made cocktails at my place and didn't imbibe and didn't have regrets and had a fantastic time.  I give absolutely zero  f***s that I will likely be W30ing during Halloween parties, and have no interest in eating in such a way that my skin hurts.

 

Day 4 was HELL yesterday, not gonna lie.  So. Damn. Weepy.  Lowgrade headache all day. The usual suspects, really.  But hey, sugar's a helluva addiction, and this morning I'm feeling like myself again.  I've got a few stubborn blisters that are still lingering on, and a whole lot of healing to do before this is over, but the worst of it is done now.

 

Anyone else working on a W30 to treat a skin condition?  How's it going?

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  • 3 weeks later...

How are you doing? How is your skin? I also have eczema. It is on my hands. I had it as a child in my hands, it was pretty horrible and debilitating. Then in my early teens it all but disappeared. We always thought it was contact related but never found the cause. It was dormant for 17 years and now it has resurfaced. During my first whole30 it improved in the first few weeks, then returned for the remainder and all through reintroducing. It cleared completely for about a month, and it is now returning again. I think your idea of keeping in whole30 until it completely clears is a good one as I believe that my breakouts are extremely delayed from the time I consum the food to the time of the break out.

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I'm on day 30 of my second whole 30 in 2 years and on day 21 I broke out in dermatitis on both arms. It is wretched itchy and a little sore. It coincides with a lot of heat in my body (eastern medicine), tummy aches, and irritability. I was cruising along on my whole 30 and plan to keep on til this goes away. I've been strict paleo for 2 years but my snacking and dark chocolate usage were getting out of hand. I want to know what is causing this. I've eaten eggs for years now and my hunch is nightshades or simply kicking out heavy metals from Candida dieoff. I'm stumped. Good luck to you and let me know if you have any insights.

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  • 2 months later...

Hey there!  What ended up happening with your skin?  I'm trying to Whole30 my eczema away, too.  I'm only on day 7, no improvements yet (it's actually a bit worse than when I started).  I've just decided to take nightshades out of my diet too, I've heard they can cause problems for some people.  We'll see!

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  • 7 months later...
On 10/31/2015 at 0:13 AM, RPT said:

I'm on day 30 of my second whole 30 in 2 years and on day 21 I broke out in dermatitis on both arms. It is wretched itchy and a little sore. It coincides with a lot of heat in my body (eastern medicine), tummy aches, and irritability. I was cruising along on my whole 30 and plan to keep on til this goes away. I've been strict paleo for 2 years but my snacking and dark chocolate usage were getting out of hand. I want to know what is causing this. I've eaten eggs for years now and my hunch is nightshades or simply kicking out heavy metals from Candida dieoff. I'm stumped. Good luck to you and let me know if you have any insights.

Looking to get some advice...this thread is the closest I can find to what I am going through. 

I was moving along really well on my first ever Whole30. It was really exhilirating to be able to feel my nose clearing, my fatigue getting better, my acne clearing...all the magic NSV that are promised came true. Never quite got to true Tiger Blood status, but I did feel a lot better. However, on day 20 I started getting itchy... I have had itchy scalp here and there, and five years ago I had 3 or 4 very bad quarter-sized spots that were diagnosed as contact dermatitis. I was given a strong steroid skin, and now have the discolored skin and/or skin tags in each spot to show for it. The intense itch-scratch-open lesion cycle was familiar, so I made myself stay hands off despite the nearly maddening desire to scratch. Yet, even hands off the spot on the back of my thigh (right under the buttock) , one day I merely brushed it accidentally while getting dressed and it busted. All I could think was here we go again...the itch, the weeping, the embarrassing wet spots on the back of my pants. I went to the doctor right away. She was actually very receptive to hearing all about Whole30, as that was the only thing different in my life either internally or environmentally. She asked lots of the usual questions about clothing, detergent, if I'd left the country, if I'd ever had a nut or fish allergy (all no) , then finally concluded that she felt awful for me but didn't know the cause. She gave me a steroid to take internally because at this point, it had spread up and down my arms seemingly out of nowhere (maybe I spread the infection from my leg???), and she gave me an antibiotic.

I finished the steroids 5 days ago, and I have only one day left on the antibiotics, but I swear it is worse than ever. I'm actually on re-introduction day 4, supposed to be my dairy/cheese day. I had some goat cheese but I'm really afraid to try anything else said dairy generally causes skin inflammation or acne in people as it is. I did have a small amount of sugar (syrup in my coffee) on re-intro days 1 &2, and the small amount of sugar in my Ninja Sriracha, and about a 1/4 cup of beans on my legume day. Probably not even enough to see effects, I thought, but sure enough after my lifelong acne clearing, I got some small cystic acne in between my eyebrows and on my chin - huge bummer. But this is how I know, right? 

Guys, I am miserable. I have marks up and down my arms, and full on rash coverage on my upper arms. I also have sprinklings across my ankles, breasts, the back of my neck, and crusty itchy earlobes. Worst of all, my buttocks and thighs are covered in huge sections that are weeping. A lot. Yesterday I had to leave work early because I have to wear jeans at work, and even through a bandage and shorts I had on under my jeans, I looked like I sat in a pool of water. 

I'm sorry to be overly-descriptive, but I'm just hoping someone will read this and it will spark an answer. I have thrown money and time on everything I can think of the last week. Oat bath, magnesium spray (ouch), probiotics after my antibiotics, ACV baths and ACV drinks, Indian Healing Clay...There's no relief. I don't even care at this point if the itching stops...I just want it to DRY UP. I did a ACV bath last night, and the weeping is worse than ever. Again, sorry to be gross, but when I stand it drips down my leg. It's that bad. 

What the heck is going on?????? This wasn't supposed to happen. That's how I feel now, days in. Like I'm going to have a nervous breakdown because I've been doing everything to be healthy inside and out and somehow I'm suffering more than I ever have. 

Any ideas out there for what's happening to me?

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