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Autoimmune Whole30 started 7/19


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I have suffered with chronic pain for nearly two decades, with a significant increase in symptoms in the last five years. I have been diagnosed with chronic Lyme disease, fibromyalgia, and Hashimotos. The doctors who are trying to help me with my fibromyalgia strongly encouraged me to try the Whole 30 to see how and if food sensitivities may be contributing to my symptoms.

I had been considering the Whole 30 to help loose some weight. Seven years ago, I dropped sixty pounds by doing the Atkins program for six months. My primary care physician suggested that the extra weight was probably contributing to my pain. I kept the weight off for three or four months. However, my symptoms were not decreasing. I went back to comforting myself with food (and alcohol), so the weight came back. Then I suffered another severe fall on my icy front steps. A few months after that my weight topped out at 243 pounds (I am 5'8").

Because of my various diagnoses, my doctor encouraged me to do the Autoimmune version of Whole 30. This is hugely challenging for me, since one of the ways that I'd been able to stick with Atkins in the past was by spicing things up with various peppers and pepper-based seasonings. Plus, tomatoes are one of my favorite foods, particularly in the summer when they are readily available and vine ripened.

The prohibition on snacking between meals is challenging as well. On Atkins I used to grab a handful of nuts/seeds and a piece of fruit to get me through the afternoon.

I eased into the program by eliminating dairy from my diet a few weeks ago. Then I slowly started ditching wheat-based foods. Then I read that I was also going to have to give up all other grains. Argh! Then no potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, nuts, seeds, or eggs. I fear that I'm going to get "food bored" since I'm already tiring of the available choices for protein. All the same, I'm trying to cook proteins ahead and freeze them so that they're easy to grab and toss into a stir fry. I even made my own sausage patties that only include autoimmune friendly spices.

Wish me luck!

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Doctor's orders always trump Whole30 but we would really encourage you to do the standard Whole30 first, especially if you have not done one previously. At its heart, Whole30 is an anti-inflammatory program and many people experience significant reduction in auto-immune conditions just by cutting out the known inflammers as the program calls for.  It's only 30 days which is a drop in the bucket of your life, I would highly suggest starting with the standard one before moving on to the extremely restrictive AIP version.


Also, the Whole30 is absolutely nothing like Atkins. Atkins is a high protein, high fat weight loss diet.  Whole30 is an omnivorous elimination plan which is moderate in protein and fat and extremely high in vegetables. Atkins emphasizes weight loss and restriction while Whole30 emphasizes eating to satiation, nutrient density and personal awareness/experimentation.  Whole30 also cares about how foods interact with your body, hence why certain things are excluded.  When you did Atkins I suspect you were still eating a lot of dairy and if you were using any of their products you were also consuming soy, sweeteners, dairy again and legumes not to mention a tonne of chemicals.  All of these ingredients will contribute to inflammation in a body which is sensitive to them. These two plans are not at all alike so it would behoove you to not compare what Whole30 asks you to do with what you may have done when you did the Atkins plan.


As far as not snacking, on the Whole30 we ask you to make your meals large enough and composed properly in order to get 4-5 hours between meals. Once you understand how to do this, you should have no trouble making it from meal to meal without snacking.  This timing will also help to rebalance your hormones which will be a boon to managing your illnesses.

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