Day 25 Tomorrow, Feeling BAD!!! No real improvements...


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So I began this Whole30 journey thinking the only way I could go was up.  I was a carb-addicted monster with very bad eating habits and overweight.

I'll cut to the chase.  Tomorrow is day 25, and I'm feeling like utter crap.  The last few days I've had no energy, been headachy, feeling grouchy, and have really seen no further changes in clothes, skin, etc since the first week.  I am following my whole30 TO THE LETTER.  Also, I am getting full before my meal is done, but finish it anyway because I'm afraid of not getting enough protein, fat, or veggies.  

I drink 3-4 liters of water a day.

Today's meals, since it was a very typical day:
Meal 1:  3 hardboiled eggs, one whole avocado, half an apple.
Meal 2:  Home made grass fed beef stew.  1 large "hand" sized portion of stew beef with a cup of carrots inside, as well as mushrooms and onions, all in homemade broth.  1 whole baked sweet potato on the side with ghee on it and the other half of my breakfast apple.  
Meal 3:  tuna and hard boiled egg salad with approved mayo.  On a bed of lettuce with two cups of carrots on the side.  Glass of cranberry kombucha.  

I have zero energy.  I am headachy.  My mood is terrible and down in the dumps.  And, as I said, I really don't see any changes to body composition etc.  I am SOOOO close to the end.  I was already committed to a Whole60 because of how bad my habits were before this, but I wanted to feel better, not just as bad if not worse!!!

Someone please help!

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Hi there JessRN - sorry you're feeling so crappy. Something that jumped out at me immediately was your meal 1, is this very typical? There weren't any vegetables at all - if I don't have a good breakfast it really sets me up for a shitty day. Plus the apple could spike your blood sugar levels and leave you craving and feeling hungry after a couple of hours. I would swap the apple for 2-3 cups of sauteed greens, spinach or kale and any other vegetable you like and see how that imnproves thinsg over the next few days.


Thats just my one tip but I'm sure others will have advice..well done for getting to day 25!!



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Yep, I'd agree with WholeStanley re your meal one - ditch the fruit & replace it with a generous serving of vegetables, otherwise you're playing catch up all day, and if this is a typical meal one for you then it will have had a cumulative effect on how you're feeling.

I'd also ask how you're sleeping, and what your stress levels are like?

Are you eating meal one within an hour of wakening?

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  • Moderators

Where are you in your cycle? What if you added more starchy veg? The baked sweet potato at Meal 2 is good, and you're getting plenty of carrots, but maybe mix it up a bit. Add winter squash and potato. See if it helps.

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Hey guys, thank you so much for responding!

The apple at breakfast stayed because when I cut it out, I honestly couldn't think straight all day.  My brain was SO foggy.  And as a nurse, that is terrifying and didn't feel safe.  I think I need that glucose.  And I don't eat veggies at breakfast because #1 yuck and #2 I'm already SO full after those eggs and avocado that I have to choke down the apple.  I previously tried to cut back on the number of eggs or amount of avocado based on some moderators suggestions, but it didn't improve how I was feeling, I actually felt worse.  

I'd like to add and emphasize that I am not getting hungry between meals.  Satiety is fine.  Waking up hungry and usually eating within 30 minutes of waking up if I'm home.  If I'm at work, there is no physical way for me to do that.  

Sleeping ok.  I was sleeping terribly before Whole30.  Now I'm just tired all the time so I sleep well because I'm exhausted at the end of the day.  Stress is a constant in my life, I'm a nurse.  My life is one big ball of stress.  But that's normal for me.

Also, due to my carb issues, I do not and will not eat potatoes.  Period.  Sweet potatoes are my compromise because at least they're less of a carb bomb.  

As for my cycle, I really don't have one.  I have an IUD, and it's kind of impossible to track.  

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There is a sort of "no man's land" -- an area between being a fat burner and a sugar burner, that is just not a good place to be.   Do you feel like maybe, every time you've started to experience some carb flu, you have upped the carbs to avoid it?  Because.....  if you really want to switch over to being able to run efficiently on fat, and having your brain light up in a wonderful way with some ketones -- sometimes you just gotta bite the bullet and go through some carb flu.


I would challenge you to have a breakfast FULL of fat & protein, and see how you feel after that.  Tuna & eggs cooked in coconut oil with kale or spinach is some killer brain food for me.  


None of us really "need" an apple for breakfast.....  Not if your goal is to be a fat-burner, especially.  You are setting yourself up for blood sugar issues for the rest of the day.  Up and down, up and down, and you are keeping your body looking for that steady stream of glucose.

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Brewer5, I have been feeling like my body has been riding a terribly unpleasant line between fat burning and carb burning!  Initially, I ate no sweet potatoes and never more than one serving of fruit a day.  I have not changed on the fruit, but I've had many members telling me I'm not eating enough starchy veggies.  And you can see above, someone just tried to get me to start eating potatoes of all things.  I'm not actively avoiding the carb flu, but it has felt like the carb flu never went away after week one.  It just comes and goes, and that's terrible.  

I'm currently eating a breakfast of 3 eggs, a whole avocado and two cups of steamed broccoli.  It's gross, but I'm powering through it.  I'm just feeling very confused because I feel like the first time I brought up this feeling like crap/low energy issue I was told to eat more starchy veggies.  Do you think it's just the apple that's the problem or the sweet potato?  Also, should I cut out fruit all together, or just not eat it for breakfast?

Thank you for your help

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Jess, what I can do is tell you my own experience.  We all have unique bodies and experiences.  


Some folks do well with starchy veggies.  Starchy veggies are the standard moderator answer around here if anyone is reporting issues with mood or energy.  Eat more potatoes!  Right?  ...Well, not if it's wrong for you.


I do not do so well with the starchy veggies.  Sweet potatoes I can do occasionally, like cubed up with other veggies -- but if I try to eat an entire sweet potato, I have digestive issues (FODMAPs).  White potatoes I can eat sometimes, but they really are like eating a bunch of sugar for me.  They make me sleepy.  They give me brain fog.  And they make me want MORE.


Fruit is something I had to part ways with years ago due to candida, and it just hasn't found a big spot back in my life since.  One apple caused me a serious amount of digestive distress during my second Whole 30, and I don't think I have had one since.  (Again, I have figured out some FODMAP issues.)  I have learned that fruit is not a necessary part of our lives -- in fact, every nutrient we can get from fruit, we can also get from vegetables.  I have learned that, even if fruit is not causing an immediate rise in blood sugar (because it must be processed by the liver), it does cause a rise in insulin.  I have learned that -- forever and ever and ever -- we would not have had access to fruit year-round -- we generally only would have had fruit available to us in the fall, when it was time to fatten up for the winter.  I also feel my best on more of a ketogenic approach, and so, for all of these reasons, fruit is mostly out for me.


So, what I have found -- regardless of what anyone else's experiences are -- is that I personally do better being a fat-burner and very low-carb.  I have a mental clarity and consistent energy that I simply cannot find anywhere else.  If this sounds like you...  If you are experiencing a lot of brain-fog, ups and downs with energy, moodiness, etc...  MY advice would probably not be to add more carbs.  My advice would be to educate yourself about more of a low-carb, high-fat approach, and how to do it correctly.  You can still do this and eat Whole 30 foods.  I do it all the time.  


I understand that you are a nurse and you want to feel your best to take care of your patients.  I admire that, you are dedicated.  My life is very go, go, go as well -- and I have zero time to have Grain Brain, brain fog, sleepy afternoon slump, etc.


To get where I am now -- I had to go through the process.  I could not stay in no man's land.  Read up about it and decide what is right for you, personally.



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Brewer5, thank you so much for sharing your personal journey.  I really appreciate your perspective.  I've always known carbs were not great with my body.  Not only metabolically, but they're just food without breaks, always.  About 15 years ago in my very early 20's, I did Adkins and had very good success.  That tells me my body likes ketosis.  I'm super in-tune to my body metabolically, and I've been able to tell my body is flip flopping back and forth between fat and carb metabolism, and could not figure out how the hell that was possible after 25 days of VERY compliant whole30 eating.  It's been frustrating and so sad, considering I've done everything in my power to do whole30 100%.  


Thankfully, I know very well how to do very low carb "right."  My mom even went very low carb about a year and a half ago, and was able to lose weight and feel better and sustain it.  She's 64, and has thyroid issues.  So that gives me hope that at 35 I can do it too.  It has been so upsetting to be 100% complaint with so much weight to lose, and not see body composition changes.  If I had tons of energy and felt great, it might be easier to be patient, but I honestly feel just as crappy as I did when I decided I needed to Whole30.  And the brain fog, oh my god.  

I had already planned to do a Whole60 based on my metabolic issues, so this gives me more time to figure this out.  I'm going to cut out fruit for sure the rest of the week, and see how it goes.  Thank you for your help!

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