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Hopeful for Answers!


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I've tried doctors. I've done all the tests. Ultrasounds, dye tests, endoscopy, X Ray, MRI. No luck. I have been living with a mysterious pain under my rib for almost 2 years now. The one good think to come from all the tests, is I've managed to rule out what it is not. I pushed for the MRI to check for cancer. After my grandmother passed of stomach cancer, I was afraid I was next. 

Luckily, so far no cancer. So that was a sigh of relief. But yet, after each test I was disappointed. I even cried in the doctors office so frustrated that they didn't find anything wrong. The doctor finally diagnosed me with IBS. I think he just gave up. He gave me meds which I tried, but they didn't make  a difference so I didn't bother to refill them. 

I've been wanting to figure out what's wrong. To make the uncomfortableness and pain go away. But I had no idea where to start. Until I came across an article about a girl that had tried Whole30. And I thought, maybe this is the answer. If nothing else, it will be another test. To rule out things that may not be causing it. And hopefully I'll learn some other things about myself along the way. Like that I'm fairly certain I am addicted to sugar. And if I can overcome that, it can only help me in the long run.

Also, I should mention I am overweight. 220 lbs at 5'5. I was 145 at my lowest. Losing weight would be great as well, but that's not my main objective of this month.

So here I am. Day 1 of Whole30. I joined the September Whole30 and have read all I can find to get myself prepared. Here's to hoping this month will bring answers!

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So an update after Day 1 and 2. I have found it best to keep meals super simple for now until I get used to eating this way. I've been on similar diets before and have found this works easiest for me. 

Day 1 was, hard. Not because it was hard to resist temptation, but because it was hard to remeber. We were traveling home from the holiday weekend and had stayed the night in a hotel. When we went down to breakfast I took one look at the spread and thought "what am I going to do?" There were bagels, donuts, waffles, and all kinds of things that were terrible for me. Then, I spotted me lifesaver. Hard boiled eggs. So I grabbed a few eggs, an orange and a black coffee. Whew! Made it through meal one! 

Lunch and dinner were easier because we were home. My go for now is grilled chicken breasts, a compliant veggie and potato. I'll get more adventurous eventually. 

Todays breakfast was a veggie egg scramble. I made enough to take for lunch to keep things easy. 

So far so good. I'm finding I get full quicker already. which is good because it helps me resist cravings. I was horrible about always having to have something sweet after dinner. That will be my hardest challenge.

By the way, when someone asks you if you want a mint, remember to say no! They have sugar! Such little things you don't think about. I almost ruined my whole day with one little mint. 

Lastly, I wanted to put a pic in here so I had to refer back to when this is all done just incase it does make a difference. 


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Is the pain on the right under your ribs?  I had that and it was my gallbladder.  Removed.  The pain still persisted, but not as bad.  Mainly if I was walking a lot.  Went to the GI last year and found out I have fatty liver.  The last W30 I did really helped my liver enzymes.  But, the doctor said something else that made a lot of sense.  He asked if I slouched a lot, especially at my desk.  And I do.  He said the pressure that I was putting on the muscles in that area could set that pain off.  So I paid close attention and it really did help.

I'm not trying to diagnose or anything, but it sure can't hurt to try.

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Thanks Riya! That was my first thought as well. However during the ultrasound they checks for abnormal size of my liver and gall bladder and said they were perfectly normal. 

Not convinced it wasn't my gall bladder, I had a dye test to test its function and check for stones or blockages. Again all normal.

The slouching would make sense, but I don't feel I sit anymore now that I did years ago when it was perfectly normal. I also feel it when walking. It's like a bubble or something stuck under there. 

Well, we shall see if this helps!

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End of day...what day is this? 6 I think. Definitely in the wanting to bite everyones head of phase. But I have been feeling a little more energized and find it easier to fall asleep now than it normally is. Not sure if it's related, but could be. 

I wont say it's been easy. Resisting licking my finger while slicing cake l, saying no to so many things. And shopping trips take so much longer due to all the label reading. But in the positive side, it gave me the opportunity to explain to my 8 year old daughter the difference between good sugars and bad sugars and what things I was trying to avoid on the ingredient list. It was fun for her to help. 

One thing I've been really grateful for is being allowed to use salt. I've been on a diet before that didn't allow salt, and while I lost a lot of weight, it was likely mostly water and I didn't stick with it. Eating blah chicken and veggies everyday got to be so boring. 

I haven't tried any recipes yet. I've been sticking with a basic meat/veggie plate with some fruit sprinkled in. It's been working well so far but thinking I'll find something I can make a big batch of for lunches for the week.

Hope everyone else is out is doing well!

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's been awhile since I've posted an update so thought today was a good time. 

While I still have the pain in my side now and again, it's not as persistent as it was which is helping me in identifying possible causes. 

Another huge thing that I didn't realize was even a really a problem before is that I no longer am having cravings for ice. I used to chew cups upon cups of ice a day. It was a good thing cause that meant I was getting my water as well, but I'm sure it wasn't good for my teeth. I would just crave it. Everyone would pick on me or scold me and tell me I should stop. 

I started doing it when I was pregnant with my 1st son and I was diagnosed as being borderline endemic. They attributed the cravings for ice with this but even after I had him, it continued. It's been about 10 years. 

I had thought at this point I was just addicted to doing it out of habit.

But now I think that because I am now eating more red meats like beef and burger which I had sworn off due to a previous diet telling me I should only eat lean protein such as chicken and fish, my iron levels are now getting closer to normal, therefore the cravings are diminishing. 

So yay for that!

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You are awesome, cay1982!  Just reading your story makes me ache for everything you've been through and how courageous you are to start Whole30. 

I'm looking forward to reading your journey and seeing your success, as well as seeing how this impacts your rib pain.

Cheering you on!  :)

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