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Off more foods than anyone I know and still...


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I'm hoping one of you has been down this road and can help because I don't know where to go from here....

I did my Whole30 faithfully.

I lost 11 lbs which is a good start but still had digestive issues, and was incredibly irregular, going 3-4 days at a time without a BM....

At this point, (per the advice of a FM practitioner) I cut out eggs and nightshades, in addition to all whole30-restricted foods.

After two weeks, when symptoms still persisted, I cut out most FODMAPS.

Now, more than two weeks later, I am still in the same place with above symptoms.

I have lost 23 lbs and several inches in the past couple months but I know that I can be doing so much better health-wise...

I can't imagine that the answer is to cut out even more foods. As it is, there's barely anything left.

My FM practitioner said she doesn't really have the answers and wished she did. She said maybe I should do a full medical workup. I don't want to go down that road.

Any advice would be hugely appreciated!

 

(BTW,  I do have a five month old and am not getting much sleep.)

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I remember reading somewhere that some people need grains and/or legumes to help their digestion.  I'm pretty sure it was a blogger who does Whole30s pretty regularly.  Anyway...her story was the opposite of yours...she had loose stools on Whole30 and when she added back in some grains and beans things were much more normal for her.  Are you sensitive to oats or rice?  If not, I would suggest adding a cup of oatmeal or rice every day or every other day to see if that makes a difference.  

Hope this helps.

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I am on a very strict AIP program too, so I feel your pain.  Are you taking a magnesium supplement?  I take magnesium citrate faithfully every night (unflavored natural calm) and it has done wonders for my sleep and constipation.  Don't take too much though, or you'll have the opposite problem.  Also, I take 2 NOW Foods digestive enzymes with every meal.  But I think the magnesium is the trick.  Most of us are woefully deficient in magnesium.  Good luck.

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Thank you snowflower and berry straw!

berry straw, how much magnesium do you take per day? Mine has 250 mg.

Also, I'm wondering what you eat on your strict AIP plan. I'm getting sooo tired of meat, chicken, fish with green beans, spaghetti and acorn squash and sweet potatoes, cauliflower and broccoli! That seems to be all there is.

One of the hardest part is making the food tasty without onions, onion powder and garlic, and paprika! The only thing spice left which I'm familiar with is salt!!

I'm tired of eating all my chopped meats dry with just olive oil and salt instead of a rich tomato sauce!

I even get an itchy mouth from many raw fruits so I even have to cook those and I don't enjoy cooked fruit without any added sugar as they usually lose their sweetness with cooking and come out of the pot tasteless...

I would be so grateful to hear of some fresh ideas to spice up my meals!

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My meals have not been according to template exactly because I was told to cut out avocado as well to see if that was affecting me and avocado was really my main healthy fat. Coconut was really bothering my stomach and I can't handle ghee either... Right now I'm trying to cook and add olive oil as much as possible to my food but I do notice a difference. The daily avocado did wonders for my skin so I gather I need more healthy fat but not sure how to incorporate. Maybe I can go back to avocado. I'm burping after everything I eat and I'm not even sure that avocado is any worse than anything else... 

I drink between 1 and 2 liters of water per day. I am nursing full time.

Breakfast: chopped chicken "patties," acorn squash drizzled with olive oil, bok choy

Lunch: salmon fillet drizzled with olive oil, sweet potatoes, kale

Dinner: brisket, cauliflower drizzled with olive oil, bok choy

Breakfast: tuna, broccoli drizzled with olive oil, bok choy

Lunch: chicken leg, wax beans drizzled with olive oil, kale

Dinner: chopped meat, spaghetti squash drizzled with olive oil, kale

Thanks slc_melissa!

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Hi Rochelle,

My meals are very boring too.  It tends to bother me more around my period than any other time (hormones, I guess), and when I was nursing a small baby (I still nurse my toddler) it would have been very difficult emotionally.  I eat very few raw veggies too, and have to be really careful with fruit.  It's tough.  I just saw on another thread Mel Joulwan's eggless mayo recipe.  That's a way to change things up if you can have flax.  I'm definitely going to try it.  Can you eat olives?  It's hard to find affordable green ones without pits (such a pain!) or nightshades, but I eat black olives and kalamatas regularly for fat.  A can of black olives would be a good nursing snack.


Regarding magnesium, I think between all of my supplements I'm probably getting about 400mg per day.  You should try increasing yours slightly every day until you are not constipated any more.  You may be very deficient.  Try sources other than pills - either the natural calm or an oil or lotion that you rub on your skin.  Your body may not be absorbing all of it from a pill.

 

Definitely try the digestive enzymes too.  Those are VERY helpful, and might help your burping.  I order most supplements from Amazon so you can get them quickly.

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berry straw, thank you so much for all the thoughtful advice. Here's something else I've been wondering; Any thoughts on why I never experienced all this burping before the whole30/AIP journey and now it's so bad? You would think things would be getting better not worse... Actually, same for the constipation. It was never like this before.

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Hi Rochelle,

  I'm sorry you're having trouble.

  Since you're nursing you almost certainly need to take in extra calories in addition to your 3 meals.

  You're working with an FM, have you explored digestive enzymes? That is the logical next step if you haven't yet.

  Olives are another good fat if you are able to tolerate them.

  I hope things improve for you soon, if not, a full workup may be the best option.

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I think having a complete blood panel done wouldn't hurt.  Checking things like iron levels, thyroid, etc.  A functional practitioner should be able to advise about things like candida, SIBO, etc.  When was the last time you had the bloodwork for a physical?  

As far as why it's bad now, based on my own experience, I think that either 1) we weren't paying attention to the symptoms, or 2) our body was coping with the constant inflammation and irritation in other ways.  I have recently tried to add back egg yolks (I have backyard chickens, so I ate a LOT of eggs before) and some seed based spices - to devastating results.  I ate those things all the time before.  There is also the possibility that you cut something out that was helping keep the specific symptoms of burping and constipation at bay.  

Have you considered doing a very slow reintroduction to see what happens?  I know it's not ideal to start reintros before you feel optimal, but with my situation, I'm not sure I'll ever feel "optimal" again (autoimmune disease), so I just need to move forward.  That said, my body made it VERY clear that the things I tried to reintroduce, my body was not yet prepared to handle.  

Are you nursing?  If so, pay attention to your baby's reactions when you reintroduce also. 

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So much here to think about!

About reintroducing:

I was thinking about trying eggs again. I ate them for breakfast every single day for years! But I'm actually afraid of what might happen. Would you mind telling me what type of devastating reaction you had? Do I have to worry that it'll be dangerous such as in allergic reaction? Or just "devastatingly" unpleasant?

About baby:

She is very gassy on the diet I'm eating now! Is that because I am so constipated? I am determined to figure this out!

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You are eating bok choy, kale or cauliflower at each meal.   Those are all cruciferous, and could cause the baby gas.  I know they would give me tons of gas and bloating.

No, not anaphylaxis, thank goodness!  Egg yolk (ate mayo with egg yolk only for one day, so less than 1 egg yolk total) caused horrific bloating and clear-the-room gas.  It was followed by constipation for days.  The following day I was angry at the world and generally depressed (caused by the food).  My knee also started aching for no reason.   It also seemed to cause a general autoimmune flare that has lasted for 2 weeks.  

I'm also scared to try anything else!  With you, I'd try getting some fodmap veggies back in so you can have more variety to not have to lean so heavily on cruciferous.  Maybe try only polyols or only fructans first.

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I can't thank you enough for advice and sharing!

I actually did not eat greens and cauliflower this past week at all as I was really busy with a family event and the baby is still gassy... and I am still constipated/diarrhea etc... and burping!! I wonder if digestive enzymes help me, if they will also help the baby.

I actually tried onions again and it seems to create a lot of mucous in my throat. For the longest time I've had this very thick "unclearable" mucous in my throat and it went away sometime during the past couple months on this food journey. When I eat onions and garlic, it comes back...

I'm tempted to try to bring back in nightshades...?!

Here's an interesting question:

Can someone be sensitive to fodmaps but not to nightshades? My FM said to get off nightshades to see if it helps but truthfully I didn't see any improvement after that. Is it possible that I might be fine with nightshades?

 

 

 

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It's possible to be sensitive to FODMAPS but not nightshades, or vice versa, so if you left out nightshades for a while (at least a few weeks, I'd guess -- definitely more than a few days), and noticed no differences, it might be worth reintroducing them to give yourself more options. Definitely pay attention when you have them, maybe treat it like a reintroduction after a Whole30 -- do a day of reintroduction (possibly even breaking it down more -- a day where you have tomatoes at each meal, for instance) and then do a couple of days without any. Evaluate how you feel after each meal, and at the end of the day, and over the next couple of days. And if you have tomatoes at breakfast and have an immediate, horrible reaction, obviously, don't have them at the other meals. I hope that doesn't happen, but definitely don't keep eating something if you know it makes you feel bad.

If you're hungry, eat. You may need a fourth meal, or bigger meals, or both. Eat. Eat two palm-sized portions of protein, or even more if you need it. Look for new spices since the ones you're used to using are off the table. There are a few spice blend recipes here: http://www.foodtohealourselves.com/six-essential-aip-spice-blends/  and I understand that Primal Palate brand sells some if you prefer not to try to make your own: http://www.primalpalate.com/organic-spices/#AIP 

Mel Joulwan, author of the Well Fed cookbooks, did an AIP Whole30 and listed everything she ate -- maybe you can get some ideas looking through her posts:  http://meljoulwan.com/2012/11/02/whole30-autoimmune-wrap-up/  

 

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Thank you so much ShannonM816 for all these links. I'm excited to look them up!!

I will do as you suggest with reintroducing nightshades. One more question on that:

Could I be sensitive to some of the nightshades and not to others? For example, if I'm sensitive to tomatoes, then would I automatically assume that potatoes and peppers are also bad for me and not even bother trying to reintroduce those?

 

 

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I think you can be sensitive to some nightshades and not others, or at least more sensitive to some than others, so you may find you're okay with potatoes occasionally but need to avoid peppers completely.

If you haven't found it already, you might check out thepaleomom.com, she's got a lot of information on her site about both AIP and nightshades, and most of what I know about either of those I've gotten from her site. 

Unfortunately, I don't really know what digestive enzymes to recommend, hopefully someone else will weigh in with suggestions. This article has some explanation of what they are and what to look for in them -- I don't think it recommends a specific brand, but if it does, definitely check the ingredients before buying, because the article is a little older and companies change formulas sometimes.

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Digestive Enzymes - Supplements - Whole30

forum.whole30.com/topic/11822-digestive-enzymes/
Jul 12, 2013 - 23 posts - ‎8 authors

In the ISWF book the digestive aid "now Super Enzymes" is recommended. ... 

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