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Autoimmune conditions galore and my first W30


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I wanted to introduce myself. I wish I had found this forum 13 days ago, when I first started my Whole30. My doctor has been trying to get me to do this for months. I have post-viral syndrome, interstitial cystitis, chronic migraines (often 3-4 per week), a sleep disorder that my sleep doctor cannot figure out, and fibromyalgia.

I have been doing 80% paleo for over a year.

I started Whole30 13 days ago with my husband. It has been hard at times, especially when we didn't plan ahead for meals and were both hungry and having to cook. Grouches in the kitchen! We are getting better about planning ahead. My husband is doing it to support me, because he has gained weight, and to see if it helps severe rosacea and seborrheic dermatitis.

So, at almost two weeks, here's what has changed:

  • My skin is the clearest it's ever been as an adult. Is it the fat? I do not know, but my face feels so, so soft. I actually have clear skin as a rule, but it's so soft right now, I have to remind myself to stop touching it, lol.
  • I have been sleeping better. It seems to be every other night that I feel sleepy in a good way, and sleep 8-9 hours. This is unheard of - I haven't been able to do this with any regularity for 8 years.
  • My sinuses are clear. I didn't even realize how inflamed my sinuseshave been until a few days ago, when I noticed how clear my nose was. It's a lovely feeling.
  • I have had zero bladder pain. I have been aware of foods that seem to trigger my bladder for years, but this many days with no flares is unheard of.
  • I generally feel better. I am not pain free, but overall, I have more energy and feel better.

Really good stuff, and it has motivated me to continue. I was a night eater, and stopping that habit has been difficult some nights. I have noticed that if my meals are hearty enough, I am full and don't really care.

I am very interested to see what the next two weeks bring!

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That is awesome! If you think it will help you, check out the logs forum where you can keep daily track of your food and your symptoms. I feel the same way about my face, though I have struggled with acne since I was a preteen and have been on Proactiv for years. Just yesterday I started transitioning to the oil cleansing method alternating each day with Proactiv to wean myself off of it after completing my first Whole30.

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I love the oil cleansing method! I have been using almond and castor oil for about a year now and it is just the best. So counterintuitive, given the messages I learned growing up.

Thank you for the tip on the logs. :) I just started one. Now, maybe I can see if there are more specific connections between what I eat and how I feel.

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I know what you mean about skin! I was lucky enough to avoid acne, even the adult, hormonal kind, so I was pleasantly surprised by my baby-butt soft skin a week into this plan.

This way of eating has also shoved my rosacea into remission, but I have to moderate carbs, which for me means around 100g/day. Don't think that equals a meat-only diet. I consume at least 2 pounds of low-starch veggies every day (~10 cups).

Today is Day 30 for me, but like you, I have autoimmune issues, so I will be continuing on with another Whole30—only this time I will experiment with the autoimmune protocol. I don't want to eliminate all of it at once (though I might find the need to eventually). I'll start with eliminating nightshades and see how that goes.

Good luck to you! You have probably already encountered the plethora of resources and have read It Starts With Food. If you haven't also bumped into these, I cannot recommend Well Fed highly enough for the invaluable meal prep. Also check out Nom Nom Paleo blog (she even has an app), who recently created daily recipes for the Jan 1 Whole30 group. And then there's Practical Paleo, which is so much more than a cookbook! (When you get to the poop beauty contest, you'll see what I mean.) All outstanding resources, much of it free. No need for us to ever be bored or feel restricted on a Whole30.

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I agree, no eggs would be rough. While I have never been a huge egg eater (always preferred a carby breakfast), I'd feel sad about giving up mayo, and I enjoy deviled eggs. But the fact that I don't love eggs on their own gives me a hint that they might not be a problem for me. I seem to care deeply only about giving up the stuff I have/had become addicted to, like dairy and nuts and seeds, and you should hear me whine about eliminating peppers.

Ideally, those of us who venture forth on the autoimmune protocol would eliminate all known problem foods for 30-90 days, give our gut a real chance to heal, and then slowly re-introduce those foods one at a time. But the reality is we've already cut out so much by eliminating gluten, dairy, and legumes, and as we grow accustomed to our new diet, we have to find a way of eating that's sustainable. I'd rather deal a little longer with eggs that might cause me to sneeze than get so bored I abandon the entire paleo lifestyle. But that's just me. If my doctor recommended a clean autoimmune protocol, I'd sigh heavily and pout, but I'd do it.

The good news is that the gut heals and, unless we have a true food allergy, most of us can resume eating problem foods if we want to, at least occasionally.

Since you're embarking on week 2, it will be interesting to see how you feel next week. I never had noticeable withdrawals or major energy slumps in the first couple weeks, but I noticed marked improvements starting around week 3. Onward and upward!

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After a rough day yesterday, I am feeling better today. I have been thinking about the AIP and I think I am going to try it. Starting today. I cannot seem to find a link to it anywhere. If it includes coffee and coconut products, I will be holding off on those. You are absolutely right about holding on tightest to the things I am most addicted to/are most problematic for me.

I know my gut is messed up. I was on a low-dose antibiotic for a year - just stopped 5 months ago. This from someone who, before I got chronically ill, had only been on an antibiotic once as an adult (when I had whooping cough). I have ordered It Starts With Food. I wanted to get it instantly on my Kindle, but if I get the hard copy, I can encourage my husband to read it too.

Oh, and I completely forgot to say ****CONGRATULATIONS**** on completing your Whole30!!! That is a major accomplishment.

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Thanks! It wasn't as hard as I thought, but I still have much work to do.

I woke up rough. Major post-nasal drip and sneezing. Basically a really bad allergy day, something I had experienced much less when I was gluten free, but which seem to be getting worse recently. I can't believe how much good I undid by going back to the SAD for a mere 6 months.

Before this past July, I had been gluten free for 3+ years, and toward the end of that time, I had been experimenting with the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. I'd mostly eliminated dairy, ate no nuts or legumes, and even though I didn't completely abstain from sweet (I ate only raw honey from my local farm), I felt great and I lost weight very slowly and very naturally. I never felt deprived.

Some bonehead idea invaded my brain in July and it all started with a lobster roll in Kennebunk. That lobster roll was Pandora's box.

So now that the Whole30 is over, and I have assessed my progress, I decided to start the AIP today, eliminating nuts, seeds, nightshades, and eggs. I have been unable to find a single AIP source, but I discovered a Pinterest site that links to many awesome recipes, all of which we can use:


I am guessing that some of the blog posts these images link to are riddled with AIP articles and tips, so it will be like a rabbit warren of goodness. I am working right now, so I haven't had much time to explore, but I look forward to digging around tonight. One recipe that jumped off the page was meant to be: Sauteed cabbage with capers, garlic and lemon. I have all the ingredients, PLUS a poor, neglected napa cabbage in the veggie bin.

Oh! And there's a recipe for eggless bacon mayonnaise I can't wait to try.

Before I foget, I found this interesting blog article related to FODMAPS, GAPS, SCD, primal, paleo, et al.


I am glad you've decided to do the AIP. I've been dancing around the autoimmune issue during my entire Whole30, but I purposely decided to to a straight Whole30 and see how I felt (hoping I didn't really need to eliminate anything else, heh). It will be nice to share ideas and recipes with someone, given how egregiously restricited this diet is. But it looks like we won't have to be bored, which will help ensure compliance.

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