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Derailed mid-reintroduction


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Hi all,

First, although this is my first post on these forums, I consulted them regularly during my Whole30 and want to thank moderators and participants for all the helpful advice. I tried looking for an answer to my problem and found some similar situations but not exact, so I'd really appreciate responses to my specific issue.


I successfully completed my first Whole30 in late July and loved what it did for my mood, how it helped me conquer eating for emotional or comfort reasons, tamed a terrible mindless Sugar Dragon, reduced my seasonal allergy and mild/exercise-induced asthma symptoms, and got my BMI back out of the "obese" range (I know the myriad problems of placing too much importance on the BMI and the scale in general... I firmly believe people can be healthy and beautiful at many different sizes and body compositions... but I do feel this particular milestone is important for my health and also my relationship with BMI-following medical practitioners).

On Day 31, I successfully reintroduced dairy and had firm plans of being systematic during the rest of my reintroduction... but then came a family vacation where most meals were eaten out at casual beach-type restaurant places, and on day 2, after inquiring about cooking oils used on a "pan-seared walleye" and "sautéed vegetables," the fish came out with breading(!) not mentioned on the menu or by the server when I asked how it was cooked, and the vegetables distinctly tasted of butter sauce although the server claimed they were sautéed in oil. I suppose I could have sent back the food, but I didn't, and then figured that since my perfect compliance was broken anyway, I might as well go and have (over the 4 remaining days of my vacation) a slice of pie with ice cream, a cookie, pizza, two sandwiches with gluten bread, and a beer.

I am now back to my own kitchen and on Day 5 of newly compliant eating. I already feel my mood is back to Whole30-normal and I'm not craving desserts, bread, or cheese. I would appreciate your thoughts on this question: if I feel good, strong and healthy by, say, Day 14 of this return to compliant eating, could I start systematically introducing legumes, non-gluten grains, and gluten, or is it important to do another Whole30 first? On Day 22 of my return to healthy eating, I leave to spend several days at a Boy Scout camp where I will only be able to eat what they serve everyone at the cafeteria (I could get by eating eggs, meat, fruit and veggies there, but I won't be able to control things like added sugars or small amounts of dairy in the eggs, which are always scrambled) so this would mean I'd need to do another full 30 days after THAT before trying to finally finish my reintro...

Other possibly relevant info: I didn't embark on the Whole30 to try to manage any serious illnesses or systemic inflammation (the allergy/asthma improvement was more of an unanticipated "plus"!), mainly to get my emotional eating and mindless cravings under control and, yes, ideally to lose weight too. Also, even when eating gluten + dairy on vacation, I didn't feel super sick after; just experienced craving for more and a nastier (less happy and kind) mood.

I am trying to take responsibility for my poor food choices on vacation without beating myself up over them (learning experience, right?) but your thoughts and advice are appreciated for how I should best complete (or totally redo) my Whole30 + reintro given these facts. Thank you.


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1 hour ago, Noisette84 said:


if I feel good, strong and healthy by, say, Day 14 of this return to compliant eating, could I start systematically introducing legumes, non-gluten grains, and gluten, or is it important to do another Whole30 first?

If you have never done systematic reintroductions, then no, this would not really be the best decision. Of course eating compliantly until your away trip would never be a bad idea, I would probably suggest that you plan to do a Whole30 with reintroductions when you can. Although you may think you feel all recovered and healed to do reintroductions, it doesn't really work like that on the inside. You need the 30 days to heal any possible damage you might have (maybe there's none but it's impossible to know) before you start testing foods.

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Thank you for the quick and helpful response, ladyshanny.

While I can't say this was the response I was hoping to hear, it is what I figured the best practice would be. Health is too important to do with less than full effort! Plus, the meals I have been making on the Whole30 are pretty darn delicious, and I want this to be a life-long change (barring special occasions and things truly "worth it", I want to eat mostly compliantly long-term).

I will try to take comfort in the fact that, while I definitely made some poor health choices on vacation, they were less than I would have done on a typical vacation pre-Whole30; there were some good, compliant template meals thrown in with the non-compliant stuff I mentioned.

So my plan going forward will be (I'm mostly writing this down to commit myself!): eat 100% compliantly at home over the next three weeks until I go on my camp trip, eat as close to compliantly as I can at restaurants during that time but not sweat the oils/small amounts of added sugars like I would during a Whole30, eat what I can at camp... and then do a second full Whole30 -- and systematic reintroductions! -- at home upon my return.

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