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CDG's 2nd Whole30 food log


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I am starting my second Whole30 today, here goes!


I have an underactive thyroid (diagnosed when I was 19) and severe inflammation in one of my sacroillial joints (diagnosed when I was 27). Although my thyroid has been fairly steady for the majority of my adult life, I still experience brain fog and fatigue pretty regularly. And while the inflammation in my SI joint hasn't gotten much worse than it was when I was first diagnosed, I have been taking serious anti-inflammatories ever since then - nearly 10 years now. I'm concerned about the long-term damage they're doing to my digestive system, and the inflammation does limit my activity somewhat (I'm still hurting from shoveling snow a couple weeks ago). My work is fairly stressful and requires a lot of international travel, so stress eating and jet lag pile on as well. I have struggled with insomnia ever since I was a teenager, so when you put it all together the result is that I'm just not feeling well most of the time. I don't remember the last time I woke up actually feeling like I had enough energy to tackle the day.


That is, aside from the first time I did a Whole30, which was in fall of 2013. I slept through the night, was able to wake up most mornings feeling good, and by the end, I had completely replaced my anti-inflammatories with curcumin. But on day 29 I was sent on a last-minute work trip to Africa, and although I managed to complete the 30 days successfully, I was not able to manage the reintroduction process well. When I got back home after 2 weeks, I had a massive inflammatory flare-up and went back on my drugs. For the next couple of years, I had a LOT going on - buying a house with my fiance, planning a wedding, switching jobs, so my old eating habits have crept back in. And I feel like crap.


Luckily, life has finally calmed down a bit. Work is still stressful and requires travel, but I think I've got a good six weeks at least before my next trip. I've got a bit more seniority now so I'm better able to pick and choose where and when I go. And for the exciting part - my husband and I are going to try to get pregnant! I want my pregnancy to be happy and healthy, and it just feels like it's the right time to try and tackle this again. Plus, I can't take my anti-inflammatories in the third trimester, so I want to do as much as possible now to control inflammation so that it's not as much of an issue when that time comes.


So, without further ado, here's my log for today:


Breakfast: 2 hard boiled eggs with some homemade mayo and a plate full of fresh tomatoes (I love this breakfast regardless of my Whole30 status).

Lunch: Veggie & beef chili with a dollop of homemade mayo on top. I meant to bring a sweet potato to have on the side but I forgot it at home, so I may go grab a side salad to make sure I get my fill of veggies in.

Dinner: Planning for asian chicken thighs (using coconut aminos and/or red boat fish sauce...no soy or sugar!) with sauteed swiss chard and leeks.


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So, I realized as I was cooking that we didn't have enough greens for me to have a complete meal so I cooked up some acorn squash brushed with coconut oil and topped with some spices. It was kind of meh - I think the squash was underripe. It took a lot longer than it should have to cook and had almost no flavor. Oh well, better luck next time, right?

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Today has been a day. It started with a horrendous commute - usually it takes me 10 minutes to get into the city, but today there was an electrical fire on the tracks and we sat on the train for over an hour. I usually get into the office early and eat here, but the delay meant I had to come in and go to a meeting with only coffee (with almond milk). Meal 1 was was therefore a bit delayed at 10:00 AM, and then I had to eat meal 2 at 1:00 because of more meetings. I wasn't that hungry yet so it was a bit light - I might have to have a mini-meal before dinner to get myself through the day. Here's the meals for the day:


Meal 1: Sweet potato hash with chicken sausage, peppers, onions, and spinach.

Meal 2: Leftover chicken and acorn squash (could've used a salad or some other veggies but appetite just wasn't there, and i had no time to go out to get something)

Meal 3: Planning to have veggie and beef chili over a sweet potato, with a dollop of homemade may on top.


I slept pretty well last night but I'm a little foggy/headachy today.

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I got really hungry about 4:00 PM, so I grabbed a side salad and two hard boiled eggs from Au Bon Pain to make a mini meal since I'm not going to get home until after 8:00. I used lemon juice and homemade mayo as a dressing - really glad I had leftovers of that in the office fridge!

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Man, it has been an intense couple of days. My company sent my department to a 2-day intensive training on how to cope in hostile environments (mobs, shootings, attacks, car accidents - I work overseas in some not so nice environments from time to time). It was fun but man, my adrenaline has been in high gear....not to mention the massive bruises I have on my knees from hitting the floor in the shooting/grenade drills! I was a little concerned about being the only one who brought my lunch but no one seemed to notice that much.


Here's the log for Thursday and Friday:


Thursday (day 3):

M1: sweet potato hash with peppers, compliant chicken sausage, onions, and spinach

M2: chicken salad with homemade mayo, cucumbers, peppers, and celery over a bed of salad greens

M3: boneless pork loin chops with a plate of roasted whole carrots in coconut oil


Friday (day 4):

M1 & M2: same as Thursday (I like to cook in bulk to keep me sane so I repeat meals a lot)

M3: Lamb shank braised in tomatoes and onions served over curried cauliflower rice


I stopped at WholeFoods on the way home and now the fridge and freezer are stocked with lots of good veggies and meats, plus I have at least 2-3 meals worth of leftovers. 


The best part so far? I slept like a rock last night, for the first time in a very long time. I was still tired and a little foggy today, but I haven't gotten the severe withdrawal headaches I got the first time around - it's just been a slight ache. I'm trying to make sure I get enough starchy carbs (sweet potatoes, squash, etc), and that's something I didn't know to watch out for the first time around. We'll see how I feel tomorrow!

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I resisted some major temptation today - had a few people over for a netflix afternoon and one of them brought a chocolate cake. But I didn't cave!




M1: Eggs scrambled with tomatoes, mushrooms, and onions; potatoes pan fried with onions and a cut up leftover pork chop, and two slices of bacon. We were low on eggs so we had to improvise on getting enough protein in.

M2: Leftover lam shank braised in tomatoes and onions with cauliflower rice.

M3: Roast chicken with leftover roast carrots and acorn squash, both cooked with coconut oil.




M1: Two hardboiled eggs, one small sliced up tomato, two cut up raw carrots, and a slice of leftover roast chicken breast. All with a side of mayo.

M2: Lunch consisted of a bunch of snacks: baba ganoush with cut up carrots, cucumber, celery, and peppers; baked mushrooms stuffed with onions, garlic, and compliant prosciutto; roasted asparagus wrapped with prosciutto; and nom nom paleo's chili lime chicken wings.

M3: Baked salmon, roasted broccoli and beets cooked in coconut oil.

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Oh boy, was I in a MOOD today. Everyone and everything was on my last nerve. Am I having a delayed onset Kill All the Things phase? I slept okay last night - a little fitfully, but I think I ended up getting about seven hours, which isn't bad.


Here's the meal log for today:


M1: One and a half hard boiled eggs. The second one tasted a bit off and I couldn't finish it, so I had a few bites of chicken salad to supplement. Veggies were leftover roasted beets and broccoli from last night, and coffee with coconut milk.

M2: Big salad from Chop't with tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, hard boiled egg, topped with chicken salad I brought from home and olive oil & lemon juice for the dressing.

M3: Hamburger (no bun!) with mustard and homemade mayo, roasted brussels sprouts and butternut squash on the side.


I am really wanting a beer or glass of wine at the moment...but I won't cave in!

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The last couple of days have presented some unexpected challenges, but I've held strong! I'm not quite as tired (but I wouldn't really say I'm energetic), back pain is about the same, maybe a little bit less than usual?


Here's the log for the last couple days:



M1: Two fried eggs, smoked salmon, asparagus and broccoli stems sautéed in ghee, coffee with coconut milk

M2: I got stuck in a mall but I put together a compliant meal at chipotle - carnitas salad with two kinds of compliant salsa and guacamole.

M3: My favorite curry recipe, which just so happens to be compliant - chicken drumsticks with potatoes, onions, and carrots cooked in a red curry - chicken stock (homemade) - coconut milk broth. Seasoned with red boat fish sauce.



M1: Leftover hamburger with butternut squash and broccoli stems cooked in coconut oil. coffee with coconut milk

M2: Surprise work lunch out of the office. Had a smoked salmon salad that had arugula, cucumber, and radishes with oil & vinegar dressing.

M3: Had a super long doctors appointment so cooking dinner wasn't going to happen. We went out and I got a salad with lettuce, asparagus, tomatoes and cucumbers topped with grilled steak. Oil & vinegar dressing.

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Had another pretty stressful day today...but I'm resisting the alcohol. I have a feeling I didn't eat enough yesterday since I ate out two meals and had salads both times, so I tried to make sure I ate enough today. Here's the log:


M1: Two hard boiled eggs with a dollop of mayonnaise, 5 asparagus spears wrapped in smoked salmon, and about 1.5 cups of roasted butternut squash.

M2: Leftover chicken curry from the other night, added the rest of the leftover butternut squash to bump up the vegetables.

M3: Pan-roasted chicken thighs (two, they were small), kale sautéed with mushrooms and garlic, and a sweet potato.


And I'm off to bed soon, hoping tomorrow is a little less bumpy.

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I am falling off from doing my log - need to stay on top of this so I don't forget what I've been eating!



M1: Three hard boiled eggs, a small sweet potato, and coffee with coconut milk. I also brought homemade sauerkraut, but I think I messed it up - way too salty and I just couldn't eat it. So I was a little light on veggies for this meal.

M2: Leftover veggie & beef chili (I froze a bunch of it when I made it) and a big salad with avocado, cucumber, red onions, and tomatoes. Olive oil and lemon juice for dressing. I didn't eat many of the tomatoes - they were mealy and flavorless, pretty much the reason I hated tomatoes until I studied in Europe and had tomatoes that tasted the way they're supposed to. It was a good, filling lunch.

M3: Went out with the hubby and had to create a meal out of random stuff. I ended up with a plate of prosciutto, roasted whole carrots, and roasted cauliflower with tahini. It might have been an odd meal, but it was delicious.



M1: Sweet potato hash with yellow peppers, spinach, mushrooms, and onions, cooked in ghee and topped with two poached eggs. I didn't have enough eggs to make a proper hollandaise, which would have been delicious, so I just did a quick lemon butter with chipotle powder.

M2: Green salad topped with one hard boiled egg and a whole tin of smoked sardines. Also finished off the sweet potato hash from breakfast.

M3: Pan seared tile fish with a lemon caper butter sauce, roasted turnips and brussels sprouts, and pan roasted potatoes with truffled olive oil.


As for how I'm feeling, I am sleeping way better and my mood is much more stable. I am still getting very tired though - I don't feel like I have much energy, but hopefully that will come in a few more days. I also haven't had any heartburn since I started, which is great. I haven't noticed a difference in joint inflammation, but again I think it's early in the process to start seeing improvements in that area. Time will tell!

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I didn't sleep too well last night, but Sunday nights are always hard - especially because my husband was tossing and turning. I have a feeling I would have slept a little better if he hadn't been so restless all night.



M1: Two eggs scrambled with spinach and onions

M2: Leftover tile fish, potatoes, and roasted veggies from the nigh before

M3: Pot roast with carrots, onions, and potatoes with a green salad on the side topped with radishes, onions, cucumbers, and homemade lemon dijon dressing.

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Monday's log:


M1: Sweet potato hash with mushrooms and onions, chorizo sausage.

M2: Tuna salad with radishes, cucumbers, onions, compliant dijon mustard and homemade mayo, with a large green salad. I think it was too many raw vegetables at once, I had a stomach ache afterwards - this happens with salads sometimes.

M3: Pork chop with pan fried green plantains and roasted eggplant & cauliflower.

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I'm experiencing some itchy skin tonight--really bad on my legs. This is pretty common for me in winter and I always chalk it up to dry weather. Now I'm thinking it might be food-related? Going to start tracking itchiness here and see if there's a correlation.

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I didn't sleep very well last night, so today was a bit rough. I've got a bit of a headache so I'm going to head to bed early. But today is day 15! Halfway there.


M1: Same as yesterday - sweet potato hash with mushrooms, onions and chorizo sausage. Coffee with coconut milk.

M2: Leftover pot roast with carrots and potatoes, also some leftover roasted cauliflower.

M3: Pan roasted chicken thighs, roasted potato wedges, and a new experimental dish: zucchini and squash strips rolled up around some tinned salmon mixed with avocado, onions, cilantro, and lime juice.

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I've slept better the last couple of night and I'm getting 7-8 hours...but I still feel really tired. Not sure what's up with that?


In any case, here's my log from yesterday:


M1: Two scrambled eggs (done in a mug in the microwave - won't be doing that again...hello rubbery eggs), about 2/3 of a chorizo sausage link, a whole fresh tomato, and 2/3 of a large yellow pepper dipped in homemade mayo.

M2: Leftover pot roast with carrots, potatoes and onions, plus the last 1/3 of that yellow pepper with mayo.

M3: My husband put a whole chicken on the grill with a jalapeno-cilantro-lime marinade. SO DELICIOUS. We had that (with mayo on the side), grilled asparagus, potatoes, and carrots. Really good meal.

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Day 18...almost 2/3 there!


Day 17 log:


M1: 2 hard boiled eggs, chorizo sausage, a small tomato sliced up with salt and pepper, and about a cup or so of raw carrots. 

M2: Leftover tuna salad made with homemade mayo, onions, cucumbers, and radishes. It was a smaller serving because my husband got into it thinking it was extra (really...he should know better by now!), so I supplemented with a hard boiled egg. Put it all over salad greens - maybe about 2 cups worth? - and about a cup of grilled veggies from the night before (asparagus, carrots, potatoes).

M3: I didn't get home until late, so dinner was a little light. I have a leftover chicken thigh and a few squash/salmon roll ups. I was probably light on the vegetables but didn't have anything ready to eat so I had a small banana....and oh boy, was that a mistake. I've never been a huge banana person - the flavor and texture are fine but I've never been able to eat a whole banana without feeling a little off afterwards. Last night I got a full blown stomach ache from it - the kind that's accompanied by what feels like a pressure headache. So I guess I won't be eating too many bananas in the future?

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I forgot to add that my back was bothering me some yesterday - it's frustrating, I would have hoped that it would be getting better. But here's the weird part - I saw my rheumatologist last week, and the x-rays show no degeneration of my SI joints. Before I started seeing him 7 years ago I had gone to an orthopedist (I think? it was so long ago) and I remember the x-rays he took there was clearly degeneration/inflammation of the joint. So odd.

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Here we are for today:

M1: two hard boiled eggs, a couple slices of grilled chicken breast, and about 2 cups of spaghetti squash with an olive oil, lemon, and Dijon sauce. Coffee and coconut milk.

M2: leftover grilled chicken thigh and drumstick (skin on), about 2 cups of sautéed peppers, onions, zucchini, and squash with a little jalapeño thrown in, topped with the same sauce as M1.

M3: grilled strip steak with mushrooms cooked in ghee and garlic, grilled broccoli (one full small head...that stuff cooks down a lot), and a whole artichoke dipped in creamy lemon sauce.

My legs are itchy again...outside of my thighs this time. My sister and another friend of mine both get eczema when they eat citrus...I really hope that's not my issue. But maybe just in case I'll cut it out for a few days and see.

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After some consultation with the W30 experts I've decided to cut out potatoes and citrus for a bit to see if my inflammation & itchy skin gets any better...that is, after today, since I had already made a potato hash to eat today. My back hasn't been feeling too hot the last few days and it's kinda pissing me off. Last time I did a W30, white potatoes were a no-go and my back did improve by the end. It would be REALLY sad if I couldn't eat them anymore...I've got Irish heritage, they're in my blood!


Anyway, here's what we've got for today:


M1: Breakfast hash with potatoes, onions, compliant lamb merguez sausage, and cut up broccoli stems (leftover from dinner the night before). Topped with two eggs. It was all cooked in lard and I think between that, the eggs, and the sausage I got enough fat in.

M2: The rest of the breakfast hash (about a cup), about a cup of roasted spaghetti squash and chicken breast topped with an olive oil, lemon and dijon vinaigrette.

M3: I was hungry a couple hours after M2 so this was a mini-meal - 3 slices of prosciutto and about another cup of spaghetti squash.

M4: On the smaller side since I had a mini-meal. Two homemade pork sausages - probably about a palm size total, and about a cup of braised cabbage with bacon.

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Today is day 20 overall, and day one of no citrus or potatoes. My back is still stiff and I'm still a little itchy, but we'll see how it goes after a few days. The time change really messed me up today, I didn't end up eating breakfast until about 11:00 AM, then had to run errands all afternoon, so by the time I got home I had to go ahead and start cooking dinner and prepping things for the week. I had one of my homemade sausages as a snack.


Log for today:


M1: 2 eggs scrambled with a little leftover steak from the other night, a homemade pork sausage, and sweet potato hash with onions.

Snack: One pork sausage patty.

M2: Oven roasted red snapper - stuffed with onions, garlic, and herbs, seasoned with salt and pepper and old bay, and wrapped in banana leaves. It was really delicious. Side of sautéed book toy with sunshine sauce and a small sweet potato with ghee.

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I'm so tired today. The whole time change thing is really messing with me! My body thinks it's 8:15 PM (it's actually 9:15), and yet I'm ready for bed. Going to log my day and then tuck myself in for the night. (Also, my husband's tossing and turning last night didn't help...I'm beginning to understand why some couples have separate bedrooms.)


M1: Three hard boiled eggs dipped in mayo, a small sweet potato, and a whole tomato sliced up.

M2: Beef & veggie chili (about 1.5 cups) with about a cup of spaghetti squash mixed in. I think it was a little light on protein (the chili is heavy on the veggies) so I also had two small pork sausage patties.

M3: Mel Joulwan's recipe for grilled chicken breasts, curried roasted cauliflower, and bengain bharta eggplant with coconut mixed in (I made it a little too spicy for my stepson...oops). It was a good dinner but I was on my feet from the moment I got home until we ate 2 hours later. I love cooking but I need to find some easier things to make.


My back is still hurting today - I've got a knot at the base of my rib cage on my right side and it;s really hard to get it to release when it gets tight like this. I wonder if that's pulling on my SI joint too, and that's why it's been hurting lately. I'm not as itchy as I have been the last few days - will avoid citrus for a few more days and then see how I do if I put it back in.

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Today was a bit bumpy in the eating department. I had a work lunch and didn't get enough to eat, but then I had meetings for most of the afternoon once I got back to the office so I didn't have time to supplement. Then after work I went to visit a friend who just had a baby, and picked up some dinner for them - of course it wasn't anything I could eat because I was limited to what was nearby. I was SO HUNGRY by the time I got home. Luckily there was some deliciousness waiting for me when I got there...


M1: 3 hard boiled eggs dipped in homemade mayo, medium sweet potato

M2: Arugula salad with radishes and cucumbers, smoked salmon, and oil and vinegar dressing

M3: Kalua pig in the slow cooker. Yum! Had it in lettuce wraps topped with peppers, avocado, and cilantro, and about 1.5 cups of braised cabbage on the side.


I'm not itching much today but my back is still hurting. Going to avoid potatoes and citrus for a few more days though.

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I had some really good meals today! Definitely love that I can eat delicious food while doing this.


M1: Two eggs scrambled in lard (from fat works), about a cup of sweet potato hash with onions and d'artagnan pork and rabbit sausage, and about a cup of braised purple cabbage. The sausage was pretty fatty so I didn't add any additional fat to this.

M2: Leftover chicken breast (a Mel Joulwan recipe) with spaghetti squash and Indian eggplant - about a cup of each.

M3: Another Mel Joulwan night - jalapeño-bacon burger balls - but in actual burger form, on the grill. I also made the relish and Awesome Sauce to top it with, and made her herb parsnip fries to go with it. Had some more of the braised cabbage, about a cup, to go with it.


I'm not itching anymore, but still have the knot/inflammation in my back. Maybe next week I'll try adding citrus back in to see if that's what's causing the itching.

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Day 24 is done. Getting close! I went to yoga after work, which meant I didn't get home until 8:30, so I had an extra meal. It was gentle yoga for people with back issues, so not intense enough to warrant a pre and post workout meal, but I was going to need something to tide me over until dinner.


M1: About 2 cups of sweet potato hash from the previous day with two hard boiled eggs dipped in mayo.

M2: Leftover burger awesome sauce on top, plus about 2-3 cups of spaghetti squash mixed with braised Indian eggplant.

M3: A mini-meal of bok choy with sunshine sauce, and a tin of sardines.

M4: Leftover burger (again) and I finally polished off the rest of the braised cabbage - about 2 cups of it.

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Day 25 done - on to day 26!


M1: One hard boiled egg dipped in mayo, about 1.5 cups of sweet potato hash with onions and sausage. I added in a pork sausage patty to make sure there was enough protein.

M2: Leftover Kalua pig (about a cup or so shredded), a cup of braised eggplant, and an arugula salad (about 2 cups of greens) with plenty of tomato (one whole small kumato plus about 6 grape tomatoes), one mini cucumber, and homemade ranch dressing.

M3: Nine chicken wings on the grill with homemade ranch to dip them in. I made a sauce out of Mel Joulwan's ketchup, coconut aminos, stone ground mustard, and fish sauce. One large portabello mushroom cap and about 1.5 cups grilled broccoli (including stems).


I used lemon juice in the mayo for the ranch - I tried it with ACV and didn't like it much. No itching yet, but I'll add in more citrus today and see if there's any effect. Back seems a little better, but that could be because I went to a yoga class for people with back issues, so I think that could have helped. Also, I was in a pretty good mood yesterday! Not sure if it was tiger blood but it was a good day, for no particular reason.

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