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Day 21 and Disheartened


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Hello there. This is my first Whole30 and I'm on day 21. I started off strong, noticing significant improvements in headaches, muscle soreness, and eczema on just day 3. About day 14, all of these symptoms came raging back again and haven't subsided. Add to that low energy and going to be by 8:00 most nights. I sleep well and I don't feel that stressed. My husband tells me that I've been extremely cranky on Whole30 from the beginning, but I don't feel that way. I had a bout with extreme dryness in my skin: face, back of hands and lips. This seems to be on the downswing. I mainly just feel tired and hungry. I can't possibly eat more at meals . . . I feel stuffed as it is. I started out having two small snacks a day, but have since weaned off of those on most days.

 

I just need to know whether any of you think that it's just taking me longer to adjust than others or am I doing something wrong. I also haven't noticed a change in the way my clothes are fitting.

 

Breakfast: 3 eggs cooked in ghee, 1/2 an avocado with a handful of grape tomatoes (I eat this every morning and have for the past year. I love this breakfast.) And coffee . . . lots of coffee

Lunch: Large piece of salmon, a whole zucchini stir-fried in coconut oil, and a side salad with vinegar and oil dressing

Dinner: 6oz of chicken tenders with Whole30 BBQ sauce (so yummy!), sweet potato fries in Whole30 approved fry dipping sauce, and another side salad.

 

I'm drinking lots more water now than I was before Whole30, but probably could use some more. I also usually have a mandarin orange with one of the meals. I've tried really hard to not snack in the past week. BTW: I was still snacking in the morning when all of my symptoms returned.

 

Any advice?

 

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Oh yes, I should have included that I've only exercised once since starting Whole30 due to lack of energy and motivation. I desperately want to get back into a regular exercise routine. I'm not a gym rat by any means, but I fel much better when I'm able to do some home weight training. (Think crossfit lite.)

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Hi Jodi;

You mention you cannot possibly eat more at meals but you're really not eating very much. Have you seen the template? It asks for 1-3 cups of veggies per meal.. your breakfast sounds like it has maaaaybe a scant cup side salads don't count for very much because after they're chewed down, there's not a lot there. If you can eat a mandarin orange with a meal, then there's room there for more veggies.

How much is 6oz of chicken tenders as related to the size of your palm (thickness x length x width)

Coffee is a serious appetite suppressant and can do a number on your hormones if you're drinking 'lots of coffee'. How much is 'lots'?

Your dinner doesn't look like it has any fat, but I'm not sure what 'fry dipping sauce' is....

I think you're hungry and tired because you're hungry and you're not getting enough nutrients.

Water is recommended to be 1/2oz per pound of bodyweight daily, drank throughout the day (not backloaded at night to get it in). Being dehydrated can cause feelings of tiredness and if you're drinking a 'lot' of coffee, which is a diuretic, then you may indeed be dehydrated.

Are you near your period or on it? That can cause an uptick in appetite for women the week leading up to and of their period. Perfectly normal and something that should be honoured with increased intake.

Dry skin is not really a symptom of eating meat, fat and vegetables altho it CAN be an indication of being dehydrated. As far as the excema and other symptoms that you say came raging back, did you start eating more of something in the couple days before that? For instance, did you just discover that you can't live without, say... avocado and now you eat three a day? Those sorts of dramatic increases in foods your body is not used to can play a bit of havoc with your system....

Please have a look at the meal template linked in my signature below and start making your meals to mirror it... I'm pretty sure you'll start to feel much better.

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Thank you so much for replying. Nearly every meal has fat, either through foods or oils. I haven't considered that my uptake of avocado could wreak havoc. Avocado has been a staple in my diet for a couple of years, but not daily like I'm doing now. I could reduce my serving size when I eat it. I'm nowhere near my period. That started about day 6. The coffee has been worse this week. I'm a school teacher and I've been out for a week due to snow. It's killer not being on my regular schedule! I can definitely cut back significantly on my coffee starting tomorrow . . . and increase my water during the day.

 

I've looked at the template before, and know I'm low on vegetables. I just can't figure out how to get more in, especially at breakfast. I hate mixing vegetables in my eggs.

 

Just for clarification, are you saying that not getting enough vegetables, which are low in calories, will make me feel hungry? That may sound like a stupid question, but this is a new concept to me.

 

Thanks so much for your guidance! I really want to make this successful for 30 days and beyond.

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If you're going to decrease the avocado, which may be a good experiment to try for sure, make sure you're replacing that dietary fat with something else... olives, coconut, mayo etc...

Let us know how reducing the coffee and increasing the water works... I used to be a huge coffee drinker and now it's 1 16oz cup in the morning on weekdays and 2 on weekends... having a firm limit for something that can be so rewarding like coffee is a good idea... and that water intake doesn't include coffee so make sure you're aiming for the recommended amount.

As far as your question about vegetables... well, first, we don't care about calories here so it's not whether the vegetables are low or high calories that matters. Vegetables are bulk for one thing... they also interact with the protein and fats and all three together have a symbiotic relationship around digestion. If you are eating to the meal template, including more vegetables, then yes, you will feel full longer.

To get more vegetables in your breakfast... my new favorite thing is frozen chopped spinach... since it's already wilted down, once you squeeze the water out of it, you can count it for how much it actually is. How about sauteed mushrooms, onions and peppers with your eggs? What about if you made your eggs into a cheeseless omlette and stuffed it full of steamed spinach and mushrooms? Top that puppy with sunshine sauce or a Whole30 compliant ketchup or hot sauce... then it's not really 'mixed in'.

You can also try expanding your breakfast by eating leftovers... I know you say you love that breakfast but you had it the first time once to fall in love with it... give some other things a try and maybe you'll fall in love with a second breakfast option. I like the West African Chicken Stew from www.meljoulwan.com for breakfast! Serve that over sauteed zuchinni and mushrooms... delish!

Do away with 'calories'. A calorie is NOT a calorie... 100 calories of protein, veg and fat is not the same as 100 calories of any of those horrible 'snack paks' they make now... your body does not see those 100 calories the same at. all.

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Hi Jodi,

 

I think that you can get more veggies in your breakfasts, do you like potatoes?  I pan fry a big pan of potatoes and onions on Sunday and eat those with my breakfast.   I also love tomatoes with my breakfast, I found some small cucumbers at Aldi, I've been slicing one of those up and eating it with my tomato, I was just finishing breakfast up right now and thinking how nice it was to eat cucumber at the end of the meal, like a palate cleanser.  I also batch bake sweet potatoes, I have a method that makes really awesome sweet potatoes.  

 

I believe the reason you want the veggies is for vitamins and for the fiber.  Fiber takes longer for your body to digest, it has to break down the cellulose, since digestion takes longer, you stay full longer.

 

I an D14 and have had muscle weakness since about D3, I still go to my workout classes about 4-5 times a week and I have no problem keeping up, it just seems like my muscles get sore when I go up stairs.  I was going to look into what could be happening.

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CherylS67, it's funny you ask about potatoes, because that's what I pan-fried this morning, as well. They were good. I sliced up 4 new potatoes, but could only eat 3 of them. I also ate less eggs this morning. I could tell that the potatoes really helped fill me up. I love tomatoes and cucumber, but have never thought of having those for breakfast. I'll try that too. Thanks so much for the suggestions, and I hope you figure out where your muscle weakness is coming from.

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