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Let the madness begin! April 5th


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I would like to get my arthritis under control. It's psoriatic arthritis and my psoriasis is also flaring up. Constant pain (going on about 6 months for this flare) has my mood and energy levels at an all time low. Any weight I drop will be a bonus!


I started with my husband who has a myriad of little health problems. Most notably a pre-diabetic warning from his doctor (A1C test 6 months ago...that he still hadn't done anything about...) and over a year of chronic, daily vertigo. He also has a mechanical problem that causes severe acid reflux. No way of eating will fix that, but improving his crappy digestion won't hurt!


I have two kids, nearly 4, and 6. They are not following the meal plan with us but are having Whole30 dinner and sometimes breakfast. All of their dairy is raw, pastured and locally produced. I've cut down on grains, but sandwiches in their packed lunches are just too easy a couple times a week! I've cut legumes just because it's not an easy lunch food and I'm otherwise not cooking them! I am doing "no sugar" with them. That is usually just honey but they certainly have had other junk in the past. A month off will be good for them!


Day 1 was supposed to be April 4th but it was my 6 year old's birthday and she had a mild concussion and came home from school early. Doc suggested quiet tv time, so we went to the movies and I was so wrapped up in the experience, I ate popcorn. Doh! And the kids got their first ever sodas. They were CRAZY after. Good reminder on the no-sugar rule. But it was easy enough to just start the next day!


My breakfast is eggs and veggies. I don't plan it, just make something so I don't have a record so far. Lunch is always leftovers from previous dinners, sometimes with some hard boiled or deviled eggs thrown in if not enough protein is left. Here's my dinner for the past days:


Leek and potato soup with poached eggs on top, salad

Cobb salad (minus the blue cheese!)

Lettuce taco wraps (pork and beef, avocado, tomato, mayo), kale salad

Thai coconut chicken soup, roasted cauliflower, sesame spinach

Pulled pork, coleslaw, roasted broccoli

Herb frittata with tomato basil sauce, spinach, salad

Beef stew, salad

Indian chicken and spinach curry, roasted cauliflower 


I'm having a hard time eating enough protein. I'm not hungry and have to force myself to eat at each meal. I go for the veg first as I seem to be craving that - though still not "hungry" for it. Then I'm stuffed and can't finish my protein. I'm switching that around but still having a hard time. I breezed through the first couple of days with nothing more than extreme thirst and a weird slimy feel in my mouth. Had some digestion issues day 4-6 or so. Then absurd exhaustion for day 5-7. Things have leveled out now and I'm feeling back to the way I did before the Whole30 with a bit of extra thirst and still slightly slimy mouth. Still not hungry, still struggling to eat the recommended protein. 


My husband? Well. Let me tell you about him. He can't stick to it. It's constantly little slips. He was drinking a sweet tea drink yesterday. Had a glass of wine at a business lunch. Tasted the kids' pasta lunch. Etc, etc, etc. Oh, and he cannot eat breakfast. Just refuses. Even though we started this mostly for him, he is now saying that no diet can fix what is wrong with him. Ok, it might not fix his acid reflux. But he is probably going to have to have surgery for that (doc appt tomorrow!). Why not be otherwise nice and healthy going into it? And pre-diabetes? Even his doc told him to clean up his diet and that's all he needed to do to reverse it. JUST DO IT! Ahem. I'm a little annoyed.


I'm sticking to it. It's actually been pretty easy except when I'm working directly with some of my favorite forbidden foods. Like milking goats or shelling fava beans at the farm. (I did blanch and freeze the beans so I can have them on reintroduction!). I'm glad legumes come first. If I can just add those back in and have no ill effect, I'll do a slow introduction as I will have another protein to rely on! And the dairy. When I start making cheese, I'm gonna want to eat it! I'm 90% sure my problem has to do with grains as I did another elimination diet 2 years ago. Cutting all grains sent my arthritis away. I didn't do reintroduction carefully enough to figure out *which* grain though.


Super long post! But hey, it's my log, right? :)


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You get to MILK goats.  Ohhhh - I'm so envious.  I've never milked a goat, but I'd love to spend portions of my day outside tending to animals.  I once had chickens and absolutely loved caring for them.  Now I have dogs and live in a place where there are no options for gardens or outdoor animals.  I think fresh made cheese would be really, really hard to pass up.  It would motivate me to get every other part of my diet cleaned up so that I could tolerate and savor some cheese.  Swoooning.  I also like your meals!   I love pulled pork and thai soups and roasted cauliflower.


Bummer on the husband.  Even if he doesn't do Whole30, he's still bound to be eating better since you are - right?  I've got my own host of health issues and, while I know what's good for me, I don't always follow it.  Thankfully, I am now and I'm so thankful to be doing this instead of just wishing I was doing it, but not wanting to start.

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Ha! Milking goats 7 days a week, morning and night, for several months with no break might change your mind! Don't get me wrong, I love it but if you have no one to help you it can get tough. Now I only milk on the weekends as I live in town and not at the farm. It's the best of both worlds!


Yes my husband is eating far better than he was before. We had an interesting conversation about it. He has followed restrictive diets in the past. But they have all had the sole purpose of losing weight. He can apparently follow that. But not this one to get healthier with a side benefit of weight loss. Sigh. He is (dietary)fatphobic. His mom will eat every fake chemical concoction on the planet to reduce her fat intake so he's come a long way that he no longer freaks when I cook in lard - which I've been doing since we order pork by the half hog and get a TON of fat that needs to be rendered. But it's still a struggle for him.


Ok, so yesterday's recap!


Woke up at the first ding of the alarm. I LOVE waking up with no alarm but I've been off schedule since my oldest started kindergarten in the fall. Just when I finally felt like I was adjusted - BOOM, daylight savings time. I'm used to getting up to let chickens out and milk goats at the crack of dawn....not 30 minutes before. grumble. Anyway, I've been waking up about an hour before the alarm and willing myself back to sleep. I'm going to try a bit later bed time and see how that goes.


Breakfast was dirty eggs (scrambled with sausage) and roasted broccoli. We had a super rushed morning for some reason and I only got halfway through before racing out the door with kid. I had errands to run during work so I had to drive (boo!) instead of walk her to school and then to work. It's a mile walk and starts my mornings nice and calm after the chaos of getting the family ready at the house. But at least the drive meant I could pack the last of my breakfast and get to work to eat it while still warm. But I didn't eat it. I was too full. So I probably had 1 egg and 1/2 sausage patty and maybe 3 florets of broccoli. Not a big meal.


Morning went fine. Lunch time rolled around and there was a slight hungry feeling. Finally! I had leftover chicken and spinach curry, and roasted cauliflower. A reasonable portion size but probably less than I what I used to eat.


Got home with the kids (and a third one - I'm the neighborhood depository for other busy moms) and had a fun filled afternoon. I started dinner late because of all of the activity. By the time I started cooking (maybe 45 minutes later than I usually do), I was CHEW MY ARM OFF hungry. Wow! What a difference. I stopped myself from having a pre-dinner snack and just stuck to the meal. My sauerkraut was woefully tame and needs at least another week fermenting but I had fresh cabbage in the fridge so I just sauteed that. I ended up with a meal of pork kielbasa, sauteed cabbage and roasted cauliflower.




My protein and veggie portion sizes are clearly flipped around. Arg. So I was ravenous but forced myself to eat slowly and chat with the girls as we ate (instead of dumping the whole plate of food down my gullet like I wanted to). I ended up eating half the sausage and half the veggies before giving up. So full!


What gives?!?! I woke up kinda hungry, not starving. I'm eating soo little but can barely stomach it. I get nauseated if I eat any more. 




Breakfast: dirty eggs (about 1 egg, 1/2 sausage patty) and a few broccoli florets

Lunch: chicken and spinach curry, roasted cauliflower

Dinner: half a sausage, some cabbage and cauliflower


(oh man, that's hardly anything!)

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That sausage looks HUGE - and delicious!! 

Yeah, you're really not eating much by the sound of it. Lots of people struggle a bit at first, but eventually the hormones start to settle and the appetite comes in. In the meantime we'd recommend that you continue to plate up template sized meals, eat from them what you can, ensuring you get some of each food group - and then wrap up the remainder to eat as soon as  you feel able ie., not as your next meal.

Things will soon fall into place  :)

PS. You could probably do with more fat in your meals...  ;)

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That sausage looks HUGE - and delicious!! 


PS. You could probably do with more fat in your meals...  ;)


I think it's just the angle of the shot! We use small dinner plates too. It was just a regular ol' sausage! And it was delicious. New recipe from our butcher who uses all local, pastured meats. Had whole mustard seeds in it (which my kids at first tried to pick every single one out). YUM!

I've been thinking about the fats in my meals. For this one, the veggies were pretty much dripping in ghee and coconut oil but the sausage actually seemed surprisingly lean. There have certainly been meals too low in fat - like frittatas with no additional fat added. Most of my salads have nuts in them so that helps. I'm more aware of it now than I was the first few days so I'll be watching closely!

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Day 10:


After the exhaustion phase, I scheduled 9 hrs of sleep for myself. I think it’s a bit much so I cut that to 8.5 last night. I laid in bed awake a long time…and then remembered that I had FOUR cups of tea yesterday. What was I thinking?!? I need to get decaf at work again. Woke up bright and cheery this morning. The whole family was annoyed that I sang Disney-style songs about everything that they were doing. “Look at this stuff. It isn’t very neat. Wouldn’t you think you never clean up? Wouldn’t you think you’re the girl, the girl who makes messes of everything?”  :blink:


Scrambled 2 eggs in ghee. I should be eating 3, but I knew I couldn’t so didn’t want to waste them. My dog is looking decidedly pudgy from all the leftovers she is getting of foods that don’t keep well. I heated the last kielbasa too and sliced half an avocado. That food was split between me and the girls (who usually eat like little birds in the morning) and I still didn’t finish my plate! The avocado made me gag – and I’ve always loved avocado. I tried hiding it in bites of egg and putting it on pieces of sausage. Wretch city over here. And somehow my 3 yr old scarfed down all the avocado herself after I gave up. Just last week she HATED it! So I had maybe 1 egg and not even ½ sausage. I took the sausage with me to work but was queasy, then 4 hours later I turned into Audrey II (“FEED ME SEYMOUR!”).


Lunch was 2 overstuffed-deviled eggs, so lots of extra yolk and mayo for the fat. Plus the leftover cabbage and cauliflower from last night. The sausage reminded me too much of my unpleasant breakfast so I didn’t eat that, but I actually felt like I could have eaten more. I’ll pack a bigger lunch tomorrow! And curse it if I didn’t forget my decaf tea! I like a hot drink but need to ease up on the caffeine. The mint tea here just isn’t right without honey.


I was hungry by the time I got the kids home at 3. I should have made a minimeal-snack but was a bit rushed. Thursday is family dinner night at my brother's house. They are super cool with following Whole30. This is the 4th Whole30 meal we've had there. I started practice meals about 2 weeks before committing and they were totally on board. Tonight it ended up being just me and my brother as the adults (both our spouses were busy) and 5 kids under 7. Soooo, super crazy but fun. Anyway, I had to gather ingredients and get going to his house so no snack.


Dinner started out as coq au vin but when I discovered this morning that even non-alcoholic wine was verboten, I switched to coq sans vin and used beef stock. Turns out I'm out of bacon (THE HORROR). Bacon is the first to go from our half hog and it's always a sign that I need to start asking around about who will be butchering soon. But even without the bacon, there was lots of super deep flavor and umami in this thing - mushrooms, tomato paste and that nice velvety feel from long simmering of collagen. Since the sauce wasn't going to thicken up without the addition of flour, I served the stewed chicken over olive oil mashed potatoes. The potatoes practically melted into the sauce and made it all oh so delicious. Top it off with a salad with nuts and avocado and you've got yourself an amazing dinner! Most of the kids scarfed it down too but my uber picky 6 yr old just had salad. If some of my other meals were lacking in fat, this made up for it!


Got home from dinner EXHAUSTED. Headache to boot. I'm just about to hit the sack and hoping this is just a little hiccup. I think my appetite is really returning and part of my tiredness and headache may be that I didn't eat enough. I'm ready to up my portions tomorrow and make sure I get enough!


Breakfast: 1 egg, 1/2 sausage (and no veg! not sure how that happened...)

Lunch: 2 overstuffed deviled eggs (probably 1 extra yolk), sauteed cabbage and cauliflower

Dinner: 1 skin-on stewed chicken thigh with a big dollop of olive oil mashed potatoes, salad with nuts and avocado


...and four cups of tea again. Let's see if I can get to bed now...

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Fun, fun, fun reading about your day.  Your dinner sounds fabulous.  Your morning sounds horrible.  Well, except for the part where you woke up singing. :) I'm an early riser in general and have realized along the way - not everybody else is!


Hope you're able to sleep

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Not so great sleep last night. Definitely the caffeine. I’m not usually a daily caffeine person but was this last week. I ran out of decaf tea and then the exhaustion phase hit. So that got me on a bad cycle. So no caffeine today!


6:45 - I did wake up 5 minutes before my alarm went off though! YEAH! (it was probably because I was waking up every hour anyway, but let me have my little victory…). It was one of my relaxed mornings as it was my turn to take the little one up the street to the sitter. That means I get a whole extra hour to putz around at home after my husband and kindergartner leave. I can use that time to get ready, so I can focus on cooking and eating during that first hour when everyone is still at home.


I made 4 poached eggs (I was pretty ambitious…plus thought the kids might have 1 or 2) on a bed of salad (with almonds, avocado and olive oil for fat) with beet, carrot, potato patties. The avocado made me gag again! And I had it last night with no problem. Guess it’s just not a breakfast food for me. I didn’t push it this time and gave it all to the girls. The girls were extra excited about the “pink pancakes” I had made them. But the poached eggs did not go over well. I rarely poach an egg just to serve like that, rather I poach in a soup or stew. The girls (and I) thought it was slimy and just weird. And why wouldn’t you just fry it?!? So plain poached eggs are off the menu. But I did eat 2 (…dog got the other 2!). So bigger breakfast than I’ve been having but probably not quite what I should be eating.




8:30 - I walked the little one to the sitter and then quickly visited an elderly neighbor just home from having surgery. Checked on one of their ducks too, whom I had to clean an infected foot a few weeks ago. Then continued on my way to work and was stopped by a neighbor with a snake question (it was a checkered garter – not dangerous!). I haven’t been walking to work much in the past few months because of fatigue and arthritis. It is so awesome to have that connection with my neighbors again! Plus I’m an audiobook junkie so it gives me extra “reading” time! But I was kind of dragging a bit, just plodding along. So energy levels aren’t high.


11:30 - At 4 hours post-breakfast, the tummy told me it was lunch time. So my hunger signal is at least back. It’s the eating part that is still weird. I had leftover spinach and chicken curry with roasted cauliflower. My family didn’t care for the cauliflower I made earlier in the week so I’ve been trudging my way through the leftovers. This was the last of it! I added a barely-hard boiled duck egg since my littlest picked out a bunch of the chicken from the curry the night we served it. I managed to eat all the chicken bites, half the egg and half the veggies. I wanted to stop eating just a few bites into the meal. I just didn’t want any more. It was tasty and delicious but I was “done”. I forced myself to slowly eat until my stomach actually said “full”. It seemed like a reasonable amount of food to eat (but the template seems like a LOT of food to eat).




Oh, and I didn’t eat at my desk. I have an L-shaped desk that I eat on the side away from my computer, even pre-Whole30. Too many lunches in the early days of this job were scarfed while reading emails, only to be left with an empty plate and nary of memory of how it got that way. But today I moved across the lab to a table next to a real window! Oooo! The view is of a lovely busy highway frontage road, but at least I had sunlight. J


12:30 - …and CRASH! Soooo tired. Could be no caffeine, could be still not eating enough. I couldn’t stomach eating the other half egg even though it was staring at me on my desk…


1:30 – Snack time. Super starving but I was grossed out by the leftover veggies from lunch. I’m not a picky person and usually have none of these sorts of problems. It’s weird! But I ate the ½ egg, some pistachios and some carrot sticks (I stocked the lab with minimeal components!). Energy level seemed much better.


3:30 – another crash but I never got hungry until dinner.


5:30 – I was going to make crab cakes but my husband had to stay late at work and he is the only one that really likes them. Seemed silly to make a meal that the rest of us don’t really like, so I improvised. I had a beef cutlet in the freezer that my rancher convinced me to buy because of how easy and fast it was to cook. She was right! Within 20 minutes of starting, I had dinner on the table! 6 oz beef cutlet with onion, balsamic pan sauce, and broccoli with oodles of ghee. Ate the whole thing!




7:00 – SUPER headache, so tired. Just ready for bed.


So I think I’m working my way to the right amount of food now, but possibly need to add more fat. My issues today may be caffeine (or lack thereof) related as well. I’ll see if I can get enough at meals tomorrow and not have the snack.


Breakfast: 2 eggs, 2 potato patties, salad with almonds and olive oil

Lunch: Chicken and spinach curry, ½ egg, cauliflower (curry was heavy with ghee and lard)

Snack: 1/2 egg, handful pistachios, couple of carrots

Dinner: beef cutlet with broccoli and ghee.

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I also love the food photos! They look really good. I hope that by the end of this my plates will be filled with green veggies like that. I'm slowly working my way there but just not quite there yet. Also, I wish I had access to a butcher! I just get my meats from the supermarket, but to buy the grassfed stuff it's really expensive so I stick to chicken and wild caught fish, and lean cuts of non grassfed beef

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I get most of my meat directly from farmers and it's a BIT cheaper than grass-fed at the store, but not a lot. I buy pork in bulk which does make it cheaper, but I don't eat enough beef (or have a big enough freezer...) to buy a half or even a quarter. The butcher shop that sources all local meats is AMAZING because I had avoided any processed meat like sausage, lardo, salami, etc until that place opened. Now I can get good clean versions of all of that. Plus you get free tastings.  :)


Day 12


6:50 – Slept great! Woke up at the regular time without an alarm! I do like to sleep in sometimes but I would rather be on a good schedule. Plus everyone else was asleep. Perfect.  :D


7:30 – Had shakshuka (onion, pepper, tomato with eggs) for breakfast with 2 duck eggs, al fresco. I ate one egg and was stuffed. About 30 minutes later I convinced myself I could eat the other one and was rewarded with a wonderful stomach ache. Sigh. I was super tired and grumpy for about an hour. But got the family packed up and headed to the farm for the dreary weekend to come.




1:00 – Lunch was 2 deviled duck eggs and a salad with avocado. Could only eat one egg. This time I decided to let it sit and not eat it unless I REALLY wanted to. Which I didn’t.




We went “grocery shopping” in the garden and then headed over to my ranching friend for some beef so we’d have plenty of supplies for the week!






6:00 – Dinner was spicy beef lettuce wraps with avocado, ranch dressing and pickled carrots. We harvested a cool green cauliflower and steamed that to dip in ranch. YUM!




I wasn’t hungry in between meals and felt pretty good all day. Energy wasn’t spectacular but after the episode in the morning, it was much better. My rancher says I really need to be doing bone broth for my arthritis so I’ll start working on that this week too.


Breakfast: shakshuka with 2 duck eggs (loads of ghee and lard in the sauce)

Lunch: 1 deviled egg and salad with avocado

Dinner: Beef tacos with ranch and avocado, cauliflower with ranch

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What a great day and great meals.  You live in such a wonderful spot it seems to be connected to foods.  I've heard lots of good things about bone broth and that it's really good for those with inflammation.  I loooove duck eggs.  We used to be able to get them, but no longer.  They're so huge and filling and rich.  I also love seeing your photos again!

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Your photos look awesome! Especially the one of all the great produce. Bone broth is great and really easy to make if you have a slow cooker. I've made a couple of batches of chicken bone broth. I bought a whole chicken, cooked it, ate it, and then kept all the bones and carcass. Take the bones and but them into a slow cooker. I cracked my bones with the back of my knife so that the marrow would be able to get out in the broth. I added carrots, onion, celery, whole peppercorn, bay leaves, garlic, parsley, thyme and salt to the pot and then filled it up with cold water so that the water level was just above the bones. Then I covered it up and let it cook on low for about 18 hours. Once it's done I removed all the big pieces of bone and then used a strainer to get all the little stuff out. I kept it in the fridge overnight so that I could skim off any fat that might have still been in there. Then I just bottled it up into some mason jars and kept one in the fridge and put the others in the freezer. Super easy! I'm also getting into the habit of saving bones from meats now and putting them in the freezer so that I can make it whenever I run out!

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Emma, about 10 yrs ago I became very committed to local foods. Living in Austin, it was fairly easy to get fresh produce - and year round too! My family got the farm a few years later and we've been growing much of our food since. I've always had very high quality foods in my diet. It's just that I let other stuff sneak in out of convenience once I had kids! So I'm lucky to have ready access to all of this and also already know how to prepare it.

Becker, my friend does hers for 3 days! Of course, she is using big huge beef bones. That probably makes a big difference. I have a ton of pork bones right now and I guess I'll try that. Poor dog, that's usually her treat! :)

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I forgot to mention here that I’m keeping track of steps. I’m pretty active so I don’t think it will be a problem hitting the 10,000 but I wanted to be accountable. Sure enough, yesterday was a wonderfully lazy day. It was rainy and I spent a lot of time cuddled on the couch with the kids reading books. And then I saw I only did 6,000 steps when I got in bed. Doh!  <_<


Day 13


6:00 – Awake! Wow. I fell asleep at 9 PM putting my toddler to bed. It was way too late for her and too early for me! So it was 9 hours of sleep. About 15 minutes later, she woke up (WAY too early – she usually sleeps from 8 PM to 7 AM). It wasn’t raining so we decided to take advantage of seeing the farm in the early hours. We walked the ½ mile to my parents house through the woods to looks for wildlife. We didn’t see any, but found lots of cool tracks in the fresh mud!  :)


7:00 – Breakfast was 2 scrambled duck eggs with coconut milk (cooked in coconut oil) and asparagus we harvested on the way to the house! I’m not the biggest fan of coconut oil so this was my first use of it for eggs. I’ve been wanting “creamier” scrambled eggs so tried the coconut milk. It was all way too coconutty for me! But that flavor was cut by adding some mango to my meal. The sweet clears the coconut from my palate and kind of made me feel like I was eating sticky rice with mangoes!




I had to do my most hated and dreaded farm chore this morning – disbudding baby goats, i.e., burning their little horn buds off. A close second hated chore is castrating and 5 of the 6 babies born so far this year are boys!  :(  The disbudding always makes me feel awful (between the stress and the burning smell…) and I was queasy for the rest of the morning. It did clear up by lunch time thank goodness.


12:30 – Lunch was basically a repeat of dinner but in different form. Chopped lettuce and cauliflower topped with avocado, spicy beef and ranch dressing. And plenty of pickled carrots to help with the heat. My husband tasted the beef after I had cooked it and dumped in twice the seasonings…making it REALLY spicy!




We left the farm behind in a huge rainstorm. It felt like evening all afternoon and I kept getting weird mixed signals from my body. Eyes say dinner time due to the light and stomach says no way! I was also constipated which is a highly unusual state for me. And unpleasant.


6:00 – I made burgers for dinner! I’ve never made burgers before. We didn’t eat much beef until now. These were topped with grilled onions and mayo. They were so ooey gooey good. We had a tiny bit of leftover mashed potatoes and I added a pickled salad. I must be craving something in pickles because I’ve been wanting them every meal. I opened up my sauerkraut and fished some out even though it’s not really done. It’s was pretty disappointing honestly and it was the only thing on my plate I didn’t finish (I did pick out the pickled carrots!).




It’s been a good day despite the digestion hiccup. Hope that clears up soon! I’m already at 9,300 steps – not bad for raining half the day. I’m sure I’ll get in the rest picking up the house after the kiddos go to bed. So far no huge cravings. I'll get little twinges here and there when confronted with old foods but they pass quickly. Like I opened a cabinet and saw a bottle of wine and REALLY wanted a glass with dinner. Totally forgot about it by the time I was done cooking though. Or smelling the crackers my kids are eating as snacks. And I don't even really like those crackers! But it passes quickly.


Breakfast: 2 duck eggs, asparagus, mango

Lunch: Spicy beef salad with avocado and ranch

Dinner: awesome burger and mashed potatoes

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I slept great last night. It would have been amazing had I not needed to pee at 3 AM. And it would have been PERFECT if I also hadn’t been woken up at 5 AM with a recorded phone call from the school saying classes would be delayed by 2 hours due to all the severe flooding. So I lay in bed fretting over that for a while (our farm floods REALLY bad and we’ve nearly lost animals). I did go back to sleep and even though I had turned my alarm off, I got up at the usual time! (and the farm has flooded, the sheep had to be evacuated from their pasture but everything else is fine)


7:00 – I made curried eggs topped with last night’s leftover grilled onions, and served with curried spinach. Super yum. My kids hate curry powder in their eggs but they were still asleep!




Since school was delayed, we goofed around and played at home for a bit. I dropped off the oldest in the car (still pouring rain) and saw that our neighborhood creek was scary high! By the time I headed back to the school to drop some things off for the science teacher (a caterpillar about to turn in to a chrysalis and some soil samples), it was much lower. Phew.


12:00 – Lunch was a complete hodge podge of leftovers and I didn’t get a picture! Curried spinach, half a burger, some broccoli, a smidgen of chicken. I just needed to clean out the fridge! It was tasty and matched the template pretty well.


I then spent some time preparing for a little kid tea party! My girls were rewarded for good behavior by being able to invite over 2 friends each for an afterschool tea party. It quickly turned in to 8 kids coming over (busy mom needed me to watch hers, siblings who wanted to come, etc). So I made peanut butter honey tea sandwiches, a fruit salad and blueberry tea. The kids had a blast and fortunately 1 other mom came so it wasn’t just me!


6:00 – I made Spanish tortilla with garlic mayo for dinner! Oh yum! I also tried to make completely mild chorizo. I ground some dried sweet peppers at the farm over the weekend so I used that instead of ground chile. I did add a touch of chile just to give it some depth. It turned out tasty, but certainly not chorizo! And I made a nice salad with purple asparagus and broccoli (balsamic dressing).




I’m EXHAUSTED. I felt like I was dragging since mid-morning. It may have been that I over committed on a couple of things today (which all got cancelled!) and I was just bummed from being a little stressed. Plus it was dreary dreary dreary. I’m only at 8,600 steps and I’m DONE. I think that’s actually good for literally only walking from my door to my car as my outside time today! But I did do housework all morning. Ugh, not sure if I will make the 10,000.


So a good day except maybe not so spectacular on the energy. Oh, and constipation cleared up. Thank goodness.


Breakfast: 2 eggs, spinach, cauliflower

Lunch: leftover hodge podge, but matched template

Dinner: Spanish tortilla, chorizo, salad

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Slept great again. I’m still waiting for the PERFECT night sleep but, alas, things keep happening! At 12:30 “something” woke me up, thought maybe it was a noise. I groggily registered a second sound and figured it was the dog getting into something. Then a third, weird noise had me suddenly envisioning our kitchen full of rats (I’m reading the kids “Tale of Despereaux” before bed and must have rats on the brain :blink: ). I sat bolt upright and peeked around the door, only to see my husband rummaging around in the kitchen. He was likely getting a non-compliant snack. I took the opportunity to circumvent the middle-of-the-night bathroom break. But it took a bit to go back to sleep after that adrenaline surge. Then 3:30, the little one wanted to sleep nestled in the crook of my arm. I fell asleep quickly after that one.


6:45 – Alarm woke me but I had been in and out of sleep for a little bit. I was in bed a total of 7.5 hours and felt great energy wise. CRAZY ARTHRITIS PAIN though. In the toes and ankles. (My type of arthritis can pick a new joint every day to throb! The joys! It’s chronically in the last joint of my fingers and toes, but every other joint is fair game.) Sigh. The morning was oddly frenetic and I ended up not being ready in time to walk to school, so sent my husband off in the car with her. I figured it would be nice to have another hour to get ready for things but I really want to hit 10,000 steps and didn’t see how that would happen now.


7:30 – Breakfast was a slice of leftover Spanish tortilla with mayo, and some Swiss chard. Not enough greens, but I had cooked this when I still thought I could race out the door so I didn’t want to go back and make more. I guess the potatoes count towards my veggies as well. It was delicious of course!  :)




…and I caught my husband eating a piece of toast. He won’t eat any breakfast I’ve cooked this whole time, but he’ll have toast. It was a good thing for me to actually confront him on the cheating. Several times there has been a big freak out where he is STARVING (because he skipped one of my cooked meals) and demanded that I figure out what to feed him in the next 5 minutes “or else”. He is having blood sugar swings so I was very stressed about these episodes and jumped to it. Well, now I’m not going to stress about that anymore. He can feed himself. Either eat my compliant meals, or make some toast.


Anyway, just when I thought I had relaxed into my morning, but feeling a bit guilty about not getting a walk in (it’s going to rain again all afternoon so pickup will be in the car), my phone alarm went off. Whoops! Totally forgot about helping clear out some invasive trees in one of the school gardens! So I ended up driving to school 15 minutes after my kid. But it was awesome that I spent the whole morning outside getting exercise…and getting dirty. Bumped me up to 6,000 steps by noon. Plus I got a good upper body workout.


12:00 – Had the rest of the spicy beef on lettuce with black olives and mayo. Still a great dish even on the third go around. No picture – I was RAVENOUS by the time I got home. It took all of my will power not to scarf the food. In days past, I would have eaten that amount plus another 50% more probably before realizing I was full. I still ate faster than I should have, but at least I could tell that I was full by the end of the meal.


5:45 – Dinner was “random veggie” soup with chicken thighs. I had a little bit of this and that in the fridge that needed to be used up, no one thing being big enough for a dish of its own, so made soup. I realized after the meal it was woefully lacking in the fat department. I did use plenty of olive oil sautéing and at least chicken thighs are fattier than breast. But we’ll see how I do with such a low fat meal.




And I’m bummed with my step count. 8,200 and worn out. I struggled with arthritis pain all day and I can’t do any more. I would like to set 10,000 as a “hard goal” but I’m afraid on days like this, I might push it and actually make myself worse. So for now, I’m just keeping track and doing what I can when I can. And the forecast was TOTALLY WRONG and it is beautiful and sunny. But the pain!  :(

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Madness - You do a LOT!  Bummer that the step count isn't what you wanted because, really, you're a pretty busy woman!


I have a friend in Houston who has been posting photos on Facebook of the flooding.  Wow.  That's a lot of rain that's happening down that way.  We still have snow where I am, though much is melting into horrible big muddy puddles.


Your meals look great - I'd never heard of a Spanish Tortilla so I just googled it and will think about making it.  Can't imagine it would last long in my house.  My kids are pretty voracious eaters.  My husband too, but let me just share the woes of partners....my husband is feeling run down and mildly depressed and he comes home at lunch sighing and with no energy.  But you know what he eats for breakfast?  One.  ONE egg, a handful of spinach, and a tortilla (maybe two) and thinks that is sufficient.  Could this have anything to do with his energy levels?!  He's a tall guy who should be eating more than me.  I try to say something when I'm in a good space (post coffee) but get nowhere.  He's done Whole30 so he knows the template and that he felt better eating better, but this one just bugs the heck out me!  He never did the forums and it does make me realize just how much I learn when reading about other people and reflecting daily on my own stuff.  Argh.   I just have to breathe through it and let him get to his own place I guess.


Bummer about the arthritis flaring up - any idea what triggered it?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Things are chugging along still over here! I've survived a crawfish boil with TONS of off-plan goodies: beer, my favorite wine, candy, jambalaya, etc, etc, etc. It probably helped that I was exhausted from a big invasive tree removal earlier that day and just wanted to sit in the shade and drink water.  No one asked why I wasn't pigging out on all the stuff, so that was nice. I drank water from my usual thermos that says "For all you know, this could be wine". :lol:


I also made it through a fancy pants cocktail party with the most beautiful catered food! It was a party with people I didn't know at all. It really made me want a drink. I could happily hang out with friends at the crawfish boil with no booze but being in an unfamiliar environment made me want that social elixir. The bartender had lime sparkling water though so I didn't have to look like I was avoiding drinks. BUT, I got asked by at least 10 people why I wasn't eating the food. It wasn't even a sit down thing - just hors-d'oeuvres. I just used the (truthful) excuse that I had just had dinner before arriving. At least half the people then said I needed to have dessert! Ugh. But I got through!


My energy has been up and down a lot the last week. I'm blaming it on not enough fat. Some meals just aren't conducive to added avocado or mayo. I can't stand a dollop of coconut oil. Nuts and olives are also not things I eat all that often. So I have forgotten to add fat a few times outside of what is naturally in a dish. I tend to cook "fatty" meals anyway so this isn't usually a big problem, just an early drop in energy. But there were at least 2 meals I can remember where I had a THROBBING headache within 2 hours and only then realized the meal was very low fat. I've been much better about it lately.


So I'm in the final stretch of the Whole30. Day 24. My main goal of reduced arthritis pain has not been met. My other minor goals were better sleep, better mood, more energy, improved skin (mostly just blotchy face), improved psoriasis. And then weight loss as the added bonus. Only sleep, mood and energy have improved (and most likely weight loss). And all of those are very tied together! I won't say I'm disappointed or discouraged, but I'm not ecstatic either. As I start to think about reintroductions, I would like to go through the prescribed introductions and then go back to Whole30+legumes if they don't bother me. I'll stick with that for another month....


Speaking of another month! My husband, who began the program with me, or rather I began with him - because he wanted a lifestyle change! - has come back around to wanting to change his diet. He never really did the program even though he agreed to it in the beginning. He didn't read it and even though I told him all the details, it never really stuck. He didn't understand the "no cheating" part at all. Ummmm....why go on an eating plan with built in cheating in the first place?!? But he thought the total elimination of things was silly because all he wanted was weight loss. He only sees the elimination part as being important for someone like me with a problem like arthritis. Who cares that he is prediabetic, has blood pressure that keeps creeping up, chronic vertigo, terrible allergies, poor digestion, sleep apnea, unexplained crippling chest pain (4th doctor shrugged his shoulders about it yesterday after $3,000 worth of tests!!!), a sugar addiction, energy drink addiction, ridiculous bags under his eyes ALWAYS, and a bunch of other little stuff. He just wants to lose weight. Sigh.


Ok, so anyway, now that he has an "all clear" from his endoscopy that his esophagus hasn't eroded away (thought that might be the chest pain), he agrees he wants to eat "healthy". Now we just can't agree on what that is. I would be more than happy to extend my Whole30 to start over with him today. But he wants to count calories. At first, I agreed that he can count calories while on the Whole30 if that would make him happy. But with further talking, I realized that he would look at his calorie count for the day and say "oh, I have 300 more calories in the budget - time for some potato chips!", he also wouldn't eat breakfast and he would NEVER start over if he cheated.


This morning, I told him he should read the program for himself and then we could discuss it. Somehow, the reduced sugar cravings came up and his eyes lit up and he said "you never told me that part!" Oh sheesh, read it yourself! I told him I wasn't going to talk about it again until he reads. If he is still not convinced, we can then have a constructive conversation (not preaching or explaining, just discussing). If talking it through with me still doesn't convince him, then he is on his own.


And all of this has convinced me to give this a shot with the kids too. Or at least my 6 year old who has a serious carb addiction, complains of stomach aches every week or so and also has bags under her eyes. Maybe this summer when it will be easier since we will eat together the vast majority of the time. 


Hmm, this kinda turned into a rant. Oh well. There you have it. My thoughts of the morning!  :rolleyes:

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I'm completely feeling the "man, it's day 28, isn't that good enough?!?" phase. Ugh. This is especially dumb because I'm sticking to the diet until the 9th (the 4th is 30 days) because I'm going camping this weekend and don't want a bad reaction to an introduced food while out there. 


I had 2 interesting meal situations this week. First, I had breakfast with my parents. My mom has discussed the diet with me on several occasions. She was making breakfast tacos and I would just eat the insides. As I was helping cook, I saw the bottle of peanut oil next to the stove. So I mentally crossed off the potatoes from my list. I didn't say anything during cooking because my mom can be spazzy. Before she started the eggs, she said "butter is ok, right?" No, mom, that's dairy. She then went into a total rant about how picky the diet is. She's a militant vegetarian so she has not approved of this way of eating at all (the quantity of meat I eat...and feed to my children). In the end, I helped her finish cooking and then made my own meal (pan fried nopalitos, beet salad and scrambled eggs with mayo). Not a single part of her breakfast was compliant! She was so annoyed.


Then later, I went to my brother's for his birthday dinner. He was cooking and I didn't know what it was so I packed an emergency meal just in case. Turns out, he specifically catered the meal to fit the Whole30! We cook together once a week so he's been paying attention to the rules over the past few weeks. Yeah! He also served bread for the others, but it was so nice that he made it work for me. 

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That's so awesome about your brother planning a Whole30 meal for you! I'm done after tomorrow and plan on doing the reintroduction as planned. I'm a little apprehensive though because Saturday is my graduation and I'll have friends and family in town and we will definitely be eating out. I didn't eat out once while on the Whole30. It so happens that Saturday is the day I reintroduce non gluten grains, and I definitely have a weak spot for rices so I will need to be careful not to overdo it. My plan going forward is to finish the reintroduction and then see what works and what doesn't and then basically just do as close to whole30 as possible as my daily eating habits. Good luck on your last few days!


Also, I read your post about your husband, sorry to hear about all the medical issues. I'm curious about his chest pain. I've actually been experiencing a lot of the same symptoms as he has including the chest pains, and vertigo. I've been to countless doctors and they all say that I'm fine except for being overweight. They basically think it's anxiety/stress related which makes sense because I've been under a tremendous amount of stress lately. I hope your husband starts to feel better!

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I didn't eat out either! That's not too terribly uncommon for me (I've always loved cooking and with all the food from the farm, it's a lot cheaper!). I can't imagine trying to stick to something even kind of on plan at a restaurant. At least non-gluten grains will give you a much wider selection. Good luck!


I have firmly believed for the last year that 90% of my husband's issues have been stressed related. Yes, he does have high blood sugar and he does have serious acid reflux caused by a mechanical problem. So the stress just builds on that. He went through a battery of doctors as well about the vertigo and now for the chest pain. The vertigo was chalked up to stress but he didn't believe them. He had a start up company that was super stressful in the beginning and then it started tanking. He was out of work for almost a year. How could he not believe it was stress?!?! The chest pains are weird - self-diagnosing using the internet (I know, I know!), we think it might be costochondritis or Tietze's syndrome (inflammation of the cartilage between ribs and sternum). If it is, I really REALLY hope he will do a Whole30 as this diet is all about anti-inflammation! He keeps saying he wants to start but the doctors have ordered one final acid reflux test where he has probes inserted (through his nose!) into his esophagus at different points to monitor the pH. They specifically told him to eat like he usually does for the test. But he promises that as soon as that is done (next week?), he wants to eat "better". So I may be in for a Whole60! I'm happy to do it if he is truly willing.

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His symptoms spud exactly like mine! Except for the acid reflux. The chest pain and the vertigo are spot on though. I actually went to a cardiologist and had an echocardiogram done because of it. Everything was normal, but the doctor did mention costochrondritis as well. My symptoms have definitely gotten better on the whole30, but still not completely gone which leads me to believe that it is definitely stress/anxiety related. I hope it goes well for him!

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Super great of your brother.  We had some friends that would cook Whole30 meals when we went to dinner.  It's really not so hard once you break away from some of the traditional thinking.  They moved away and I sure miss them.  Funny about your mom.  One might think that anyone who has chosen a specific way of eating would be more willing to let others find their way, but of course, that's not how human nature always works.  


Stress is ugly stuff.  I hope your hubby joins in for the Whole60 and finds some relief.  I hope mine does too.  

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Well, it's Day 31! Guess I should recap the month:


Things I was hoping to improve:


Psoriatic arthritis: *maybe* some reduction in chronic pain (DIP joints) over the last week. Haven't had major joint (knee, shoulder, etc) pain in the last week either. So...still on the fence about the success on this one

Psoriasis: no change

Sleep: AMAZING!!!

Mood: much better in general but I'm prone to mood swings toward meal time (either need to eat earlier or more to tide me over, but it's usually at the 5 hour mark)

Energy: I don't feel overly energetic but I've gotten more done (I mostly attribute this to mood)

General skin appearance: eh, don't think it's changed



Other things listed that I've noticed changed:


Breath: my kids constantly complain about my bad breath now! :(

Mindful eating: by this I mean, not popping random things in my mouth when they are in front of me. I wasn't too bad about binge eating but if there were snacks out, I would always grab some. Or pick leftover food off my kids plates. I don't do that anymore! Bunch of unneeded calories...

Period: worse cramps but shorter time

"Eats to satiety": I still feel like I have to totally stuff myself to stay full for 4 hours.


AND, I lost 12 pounds! Not bad for stuffing myself at most meals. :)


So all in all, I feel like I was successful. Not everything improved but I also still feel like I'm exploring the best version of Whole30 for myself. I will definitely keep going through May 8th because I'm camping and do NOT want insomnia or arthritis to come back and ruin the trip! After that, it will likely depend on whether my husband is ready to commit.

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