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Day 15 and Bowels Still Upset


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Hi Whole 30ers, 

I am on my first Whole 30 and am on Day 15 - Halfway through!! I ventured onto my Whole30 Journey after experiencing varied and inconclusive digestive issues over the past 3 years. I was ALWAYS very bloated, uncomfortable, often had shooting gas pains in my lower abdomen, reflux just to name a few. To really dig into the TMI details I would often go through cycles of being very constipated, followed by urgent diarrhea. 

Overall I'm really satisfied with how Whole 30 has eased many of my symptoms so far. I have noticed a significant decrease in bloating, gas pains and reflux. However, I have not had much solace when it comes to my bowel movements. So far, I have only had very loose movements including diarrhea. I have not had one solid poo since I started Whole 30 15 days ago. At first they were much more urgent and larger in volume, which I attributed to the immediate change in my diet. Now they are still very soft but less frequent and with smaller bits with each movement. 

I'm a little worried at this point at 15 days with no improvements. I'm not sure if this is due to a higher fat content in my diet now? What are ways to try and adjust my intake in order to try and resolve these issues?

Many thanks for your insights and helping me out with this awkward TMI topic! 

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HI @KLF1190 & welcome to the forums :)

It might help us a little to help you if you could give us a run down of what you have eaten say over the past 4-5 days giving specifics on veg types (ie. please don't just say 'roasted veggies'), portion sizes, liquid intake, and any meds/supplements you might be taking - that way we'll be better equipped to help you troubleshoot...

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Hi Jmcbn, 

Thanks so much- apologies about forgetting those details! 

I have been staying pretty strict to the guidelines as I'm desperate to get my digestive issues in line. The past few days has typically gone as follows:

Breakfast: one whole egg and one egg white scrambled with bell peppers and onion (cooked in just a touch of coconut oil)

Lunch: Salad of mixed greens with roasted sweet potato, cucumber, roasted red pepper, avocado, 1/4 granny smith apple, dressed in apple cider vinegar and olive oil OR Chicken and Apple Hash from Whole 30 Cookbook which includes grated sweet potato, granny smith apple, kale, yellow onion and chicken sauteed together - I cooked this in a bit of coconut oil as well

Dinner: I have made all dinners from the Whole30 Cookbook or the original Whole 30 guide, some of these include:

Italian meatball soup - pork meatballs in a tomato/chicken bone broth base with swiss chard; pork chops with green beans and potato/parsnip mashers with a kale and pumpkin seed pesto; Chicken burgers made with roasted red peppers and onion, served in between two slices of roasted eggplant with some leftover pesto

Sometimes I will eat a handful of pistachios or a clementine with breakfast or lunch. 

Many Thanks again for your insights!


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41 minutes ago, KLF1190 said:

Thanks so much- apologies about forgetting those details! 

Not a problem - it just makes it so much easier when we have the full picture!

Ok, the nuts/seeds can definitely be problematic. I'd start there. We recommend a closed handful, every other day, max - if you're eating more than that they could be causing you all sorts of grief - like loose bowel movements for starters.

Too much fat in the diet can also cause the same issues, but it tends to be obvious in that there's usually an oily film on the water around the stool - have you noticed this? It doesn't look to me like you are eating too much fat, just maybe not the best sources so you could be having problems absorbing the fat.... just a thought (again with the nuts/seeds/pesto).

Avocados are also known to cause issues so if easing off the nuts doesn't improve things I'd look at easing back on the avocado. There are lots of other fat options out there - home-made mayo is a good one as it pairs well with pretty much anything, is cheap & cheerful, and very easy on the gut.

As an aside your breakfast is way too small. When eggs are your only source of protein in a meal a serving would be the number of whole eggs you can hold in one hand. Most females can handle 3-4, but if you don't want to be eating so many in one sitting try mixing up your protein sources - add some grilled fish, or some ground beef maybe. And why not the WHOLE egg? The yolk is where it's at nutrient wise....

Anyway, in summary - nuts, seeds, avocado...... all potential culprits & worth eliminating/cutting WAY back on until such times as symptoms improve.

If that doesn't help come back to me - I have some other ideas but don;t want to overwhelm you right away.

Hope this helps :)

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Thank you so much for this extensive response!! It is super super helpful I and will be sure to employ your suggested changes to see if I experience positive changes in the next couple of days. I hadn't considered the nuts factor so that could definitely be a trigger. I also will try and boost my breakfast - maybe being fuller at breakfast will dissuade me from reaching for the nuts when I'm hungrier later in the day. 

Many many thanks again!

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  • 3 months later...
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1 hour ago, Hope for Lisa said:

I'm weak when it comes to nuts too and have some of the same issues.  Did the advice with limiting nuts help?  Did anything?  I eat nuts at least one snack a day.  I guess I need to go to what she is saying about every other day.  That will be hard for me.  lol

It might be easier just to not have any nuts at all for a while -- get them out of your house so you have no option to eat them. Try it for a week and see if you notice any difference. Also, if you're snacking, it could be that your meals are not big enough -- you should stay satisfied for 4-5 hours between meals. If you have longer than that between meals, or you do find yourself hungry, have a mini-meal of protein, fat, and vegetables. Hard boiled eggs or leftover meat, some mayo or olives, and whatever vegetables you have handy.

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