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Attention All Sugar Dragon Slayers! Read this.


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I am new to the forum so allow me to introduce myself. I'm Abby and I'm a binge eater (Hi, Abby). I've struggled with binge eating (no purging but definite shame, guilt and anxiety), weight and self-confidence my whole life. My entire family is overweight with both my brother and sister having had gastric bypass surgeries. I’ve tried all sorts of diets that, as Melissa so sweetly puts it, never work. That was until I tripped and fell face first into the whole30. Now I’m a go-getter. I love challenges and I love to win. Whole30 was exactly that, a challenge, so of course, I took it head on. I immediately bought “It Starts with Food” because I need to know WHY I’m doing something. Do you ever have those things in life you know you want to accomplish but don’t know how? You’re wandering aimlessly but never get there? Then someone gives you direction, a road map on exactly how to achieve this and voila. Flood gates open and you’re a blood thirsty cheetah, full bore towards your meal (no pun intended). That’s what this book was to me. Every word made sense. It stopped me dead in my tracks because I knew this was what I needed to save my life. When I say this, don’t underestimate it’s meaning. We all know the physical benefits of improved health, but the mental aspects are equally, if not more important. Struggling daily with feeling like you’re “not-good-enough” and “why-don’t-I-have-6 pack-abs-like-those-models” takes its toll. You don’t need anyone to tell you how toxic that mindset is. You’ve already lost before you’ve even started. If you’ve felt this before, you’re not alone. This book also showed me that stuffing your face full of 3 packages of Oreos before your husband even gets home from work isn’t an issue of “willpower” but most importantly, the book showed me that I’m not crazy. I knew it, this was it. This is when I dragged my skeptical fiancé begrudgingly into doing our first whole30, who by the way, was training for a marathon #amazeballs. He not only completed the marathon but killed it, so please ignore recommendations not do to a whole30 if you’re planning on training for something, it’s possible.


I had eaten pretty well before I ventured into my first whole30. I had done some research on “clean eating” and completed an Emily Skye program (diet and exercise). While she is amazing (stunning to boot), encouraging and a wonderful role model (especially for women), I needed a little more direction. I was eating all the things we think are “healthy” like whole grain toast, greek yogurt, granola bars, etc. So my transition into clean eating was quite a shocker. The only thing I really had to cut out going into the whole30 was grains and dairy. My first whole30 was in May 2016 which went splendidly, likely because I was in a daze for 30 days and had no idea what I was getting into. Then the day came. Have you met your sugar dragon yet? My first whole30 introduced me to mine. She is a raging hormonal female who seems to always be on her period. Oh, then she just found out her husband cheated on her, broke a nail, pants are too tight, has a bad hair day EVERYDAY and just got fired from her job. Needless to say, she’s a raging bitch and DOESN’T LIKE TO BE IGNORED. Until the 3rd week of my whole30 when my mother’s homemade chocolate cake with homemade buttercream frosting and of course, a heaping scoop of vanilla ice cream lay in front of me (commence internal struggle). Along with my family’s open jaws and bugged-out eyes in astonishment because I “didn’t want it”. Whoa, wait. What? It was no longer staring at me with that devilish grin. It was easily decided that there was no way in hell I was waking up Sugar Dragon Lady on day 25. Ohhhh hell no, she was finally sound asleep. Mind you, this cake is probably one of my most favorite things in the world, along with reese PB cups (hello sex in a foil wrapper). This was a monumental moment. Hello non-scale victories, #winning. 1 for the in-control-of-my-food-decisions, 0 for the EAT-ALL-THE-THINGS-bad-guys. It was this very moment that I knew that whole30 was just what I was looking for. That road map finally emerged from the glove compartment. Whole30 was going to give me directions to exactly what I wanted to accomplish.

Oh, I’m also a Physician Assistant and I work with people who struggle with these kinds of issues every day. Thyroid disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, depression and anxiety (the last two almost everyone struggles with at some point in their lives). I’ve prescribed the whole30 to several patients with inspiring results. You’d think I’d have my shit together as a PA but I don’t. Even your health care providers struggle with anxiety, depression and poor relationships with food, like on the daily.

I never reintroduced at the end properly of my first reset. Which lead me to my second whole30. I proceeded with life whole30ish after my first attempt. I learned very quickly that Sugar Dragon Lady was mean and she liked to steal my energy. She had some nasty tricks up her sleeve for getting what she wants. She’s a little brat. I wanted to reintroduce the right way to see if other things were just as bad. To be honest, I didn’t miss grains or dairy but I also didn’t know if they aggravated me. I decided to do a September whole30 but did the things Melissa heeds warning not to do. I didn’t clarify my butter, I didn’t avoid the cashews cooked in soybean oil, and oh, I got married two weeks after it ended so I again, didn’t reintroduce. Well, I did. On our honeymoon. Apparently everything in sight was #worthit. Now I’m home, dragging, bloated and still convinced all our leftover wedding cupcakes are #worthit. Sugar dragon lady agrees. Not to worry though, we finished those off last night together. She’s in for a rude awakening. Back to whole30ish. I need another reset with a proper reintroduction but I know that isn’t going to happen with the holidays. Thanksgiving is definitely my favorite holiday. Not necessarily because of the food, because let’s be honest, I can make that meal anytime I want. It’s because of the family. I like it more than Christmas because there’s no pressure of gift giving, you can just enjoy family time. And harassment, and grandpa’s inappropriate questions about “making love” (wtf?) and mom’s subtle (not no subtle) mentioning “Abby doesn’t eat anything good anymore”. Love you too, mom.


I’ve pre-ordered our head mistress’s new cookbook. I’ve got my sister, her wife, my best friend and my husband on board for a January whole30. I’m looking for others to share this reset with. Let’s share recipes, tips, tricks and let’s be honest, misery because this s#*t is hard.

 Oh and is it weird that I cried reading the last page of Food Freedom Forever? She gets me.

Who’s in?? #Letskillit



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Hi Abby!

Loved reading your post! Good for you for understanding the ways in which things didn't go perfectly and the things that worked out great! You'll kill it in January!  Also, score one for Abby for refusing the cake!

P.s.  I edited your posted to 'censor' the swear at the end because this is a family friendly forum so we try and keep the language clean ;)

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@adjk1229 Love your post! Esp. the part:

"I immediately bought “It Starts with Food” because I need to know WHY I’m doing something. Do you ever have those things in life you know you want to accomplish but don’t know how? You’re wandering aimlessly but never get there? Then someone gives you direction, a road map on exactly how to achieve this and voila."

I feel the same way - I like to know the WHY behind all this!

I also needed things to be exactly spelled out for me, as the W30 so wonderfully does! Since coming down with RA 19 yrs ago, I've tried to help "heal" myself with eating clean, but was overwhelmed by how much I "couldn't" eat. I would read labels and not be able to find things that didn't have at least SOME kind of additive. So I would put it back and leave the store with nothing but a carrot stick and celery stalk (lol), practically in tears, thinking there was NOTHING I could eat!! (the Common Additives Cheat Sheet - Whole30 is a Godsend!)

And then there was the feeling of being alone, having no support (like this forum). Having people make comments when you tried to explain how you were eating and what you were trying to accomplish (now I don't feel the need to explain to anyone - unless they are truly interested). And not having a source to ask questions (and get answers) to questions that inevitably come up.

So now, with W30, I am moving happily along (OK, sometimes not so happy, haha), on my 30-day journey (I'm on Day 15), with a sense of FINALLY being able to understand how my food choices have been affecting me and having the awareness to control what I put in my body. 

Good luck in January! I may be joining you as well, seeing that I am ending this right before the Holidays - Ms. Sugar Dragon is getting excited at the prospect of Apple Crumb pie and vanilla ice cream for Thanksgiving! We shall see who wins!! haha

Best! Nanette09


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@nanette09 Thanks for your reply! Great job on pushing through your whole30 despite all the push back we sometimes face. Like Melissa mentions in Food Freedom Forever, the issue is with them, not you. You keep on keepin' on, girl. I agree with you, those whole30 downloadable sheets are amazing. I've definitely been caught a time or two in the aisle talking to myself, my phone and my jar of dressing (WHY AREN'T YOU COMPLIANT?!) People have to think I'm crazy. I also have felt alone in my struggle at times. People criticize you until they realize how great you feel and look, then suddenly, they're genuinely interested in what you're doing. I'm trying now to figure out how to help support the most people through the whole30 in January. My sister (mind you is 17 years older than me) is stubborn as a mule and was pissed the entire first whole30 because she couldn't have ketchup. I'm like really? That's neither here nor there, but I'll definitely be on facebook and instagram. I'm thinking about posting my favorite 30 recipes and having a sort of check in every day to see how people are hangin' in there! My handle is @aimtogainfit. Hope to see you there!


@Raven Ha, Thanks! Word vomiting. It actually felt really good to verbalize that stuff! #stayreal

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You are inspiring and your personality is gorgeous!!!! Congratulations on not only achieving this program but in wanting to understand exactly whats going on and why!! As far as your Binge Eating, it is something you are not alone in and the struggle is real so super huge CONGRATS in changing it one day at a time. Sugar is my public enemy number 1. I guess 1-2-3-5 and on and on!! Sugar rules me ( ruled cuz dang if I'm not in the process of exorcising my own demons) . That you are slaying this dragon shows you want it and want it bad!! Two thumbs up,high fives and doing the adjk1299 wave!!! Keep being you, oh strong one,  because you are going to have it all!!

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