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Feeling Great at 58! Post Whole30 VICTORIES!

Robin R.

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Almost 2 weeks post W30! 

Background:   I have had daily round-the-clock headaches which started when I was about 14 (44 years ago).  I have seen numerous doctors and had many tests over the years.   It has been determined that I have occipital neuralgia, possibly stemming from an injury after a fall from a horse when I was a youngster.  I am pretty healthy for my age, but have a family history of heart issues as well as diabetes.  My own cholesterol levels have been steadily creeping higher the older I get which has had me concerned.  My PA suggested starting statins at my last visit almost a year ago.  I refused since the side effects of taking this medication frighten me.  My HDL (good cholesterol) levels are all in a healthy range, so there was less concern about my high numbers elsewhere.  My sugar levels are all within the normal range.   Since I started perimenopause 17 years ago my hormones were out of whack and I have been on medications for anxiety/depression as well as insomnia.  I have long taken pride in eating whole grain, low fat foods and being able to maintain my weight but this, too started creeping up as I got older.  At one point I got up to almost 20 lbs. over what I feel is an optimal comfortable weight for me.  I did Weight Watchers and was able to bring my weight down by counting points, etc.  a few years ago.   However, I was unable to maintain it and the weight started creeping back up slowly, but surely.   I have also developed a chronically drippy nose.  I seem to have it all year long and it does not appear to be related to pet ownership as I have it when on vacation without pets.  I do not take medications for it as it is not seriously enough to warrant popping any more pills.

My current doctor for my headaches is an osteopath.  She recommended that I consider doing the Whole30 for pain, allergies, high cholesterol, sleep, etc.  I was intrigued so I bought ISWF and The Whole30. Best summer reading ever!  I researched endlessly and picked a start date and made a plan.  I had an awesome 30 days, and learned so very much about food and how it impacts my health and wellness. 

Fast forward to today!  I finished my Whole30 on September 6th.  Feeling grand!  Sleeping better and longer and have cut sleep meds by half.  Last night I slept all night long soundly and deeply and did not wake up until the alarm went off at 5 am!   I am feeling happier with anxiety issues greatly reduced and have cut anxiety/depression meds in half.  I lost 6.4 lbs., which put me just .8 lbs. above my WW lifetime goal weight.  More focused!   I am going longer and longer between pain meds for my headaches although they have not completely been eliminated.  Still drippy, but some days are better than others.  (I may have seasonal allergies in addition to a food sensitivity.)  I am hoping that my body will continue to heal and resolve the chronic pain and allergy issues.  Perhaps most exciting of all at this point is the fact that my cholesterol levels dropped dramatically!  The ONLY thing I changed was my diet, but as stated I had been eating what I considered healthy (low fat dairy, etc.)  Who knew that you could eat red meats, eggs, healthy fats and still bring down our cholesterol levels!  I did not increase my exercise at all. 

Here are my results in a nutshell!

·         Total blood cholesterol level:  DOWN 36 POINTS! Still in High risk level but only by 19 points.

LDL cholesterol levels:  DOWN 13.8 POINTS!  Was almost in high risk level, but down to a comfortable moderate risk level.

Triglycerides: DOWN 51 POINTS!! Down from a borderline high risk level to a normal range!

HDL cholesterol:  HEALTHY RANGE!

I have been very gradually doing reintroductions (wine, rice and corn in the past 2 weeks, but staying on the W30 the rest of the time).  ).  No reactions of note, except for some fairly uncomfortable digestive issues after the cornflakes I had on Saturday!   Not sure yet if that was response to the malt syrup (trace amounts of gluten) or the corn.   I had corn on the cob later that day, and all was well, so the jury is out on that!   May try gluten next to see how I do. 

Going forward I want to eat mostly W30ish, but be able to loosen up while dining out and for special occasions and the upcoming holidays.  Starting today I plan to exercise more, which basically means more walks with my dog!  In spite of still having some health issues not completely resolved, I am feeling very positive about the changes I have made!   I am optimistic that this lifestyle will continue to heal me, and keep me in the best possible health for the rest of my life.  I am calling it a gift to myself and to my family!

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