Why are my lips chapped!?!


amandasaxon

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I'm on day 25 of my first whole30 and I feel fabulous! I've been really really good and have not (knowingly) cheated once. I've embraced the true intention of the program to be about changing my relationship with food and haven't gotten on a scale, measured my food or calories, nor allowed any friends/family or general social situations scare me away from sticking with the program. I feel like I'm doing everything ISWF says - planning my weekly meals, taking time to enjoy my food without distractions, trying new recipes but I'm having one, seemingly minor, but annoying problem. My lips are ridiculously chapped and have been so since day 11.

I've tried various lip balms and chapsticks and nothing works. I thought I might have been allergic to dates becasue of Larabars so I stopped eating those - no change. I reduced my fruit intake for a couple days, especially citrus - no change. I started eating more red meat - no change. I can't figure it out and it's driving me crazy! The corners of my mouth were the problem originally but that's cleared up and now it's just my slightly swolen and severely chapped lips. The outside is dry, tender and will easily crack when I smile, lauch etc. and the inside feels like there are cut tiny cuts so whenever I eat anything acidic it stings. No rash or problems anywhere else.

This whole30 is the only thing new in my life so it's got to be an allergy, deficiency or overdose of some kind. Please help!!!!

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I got strangely chapped lips several years ago. It lasted long enough and bothered me enough that I went to a doctor. He had me put something on my lips that made things a little worse. I tried a different doctor who said the other doctor's treatment was a bad idea. I believe the second doctor told me to just leave it alone and wait for it to heal on its own. Eventually, it did. None of us ever figured out why my lips got chapped. I think the whole process lasted 2 to 3 months, though my memory is foggy now.

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Amanda, I see this is your first post so you don't have a food log on the forum. Do you keep a private food log? If so, that can be very helpful to refer back to and see if there's something you're eating a lot of on the W30 that you don't normally eat.

I mention that because swollen, chapped lips are a symptom I get when I encounter a very mild food allergy.

Another thing I've had to be careful of is the skin of some fruit. For example, the skin of mango is an allergen for me so after I peel a mango, I go wash my hands (and I wash the knife if I'm going to cut the mango meat up).

With citrus, after I've (say) peeled a clementine, I'll go wash my hands (to wash the oils from the peel off) and then I'll eat the fruit. If I'm going to chop the fruit up (I happen to like it mixed into salads), then I wash the knife that I used to score the peel (to wash the oils off the blade before slicing up the fruit).

Until I figured out it was the peel, I had tossed out some fruit when I reacted to it. With citrus, I suspect it's actually something that's on the peel (a preservative or something).

Anyhow, that's my two cents' worth.

Oh, I did wonder about the water. I've noticed on the W30 that I've been more parched than I used to be. Someone described waking up during the night with "cat tongue" and I've experienced that. So I did think of water. But it doesn't make my lips chapped. ;)

Terez

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I have been eating a ton of berries - strawberries, blueberries, raspberries mostly. I would say nearly everyday with breakfast. I've always loved to eat berries but never this volume. And my mom is allergic to strawberries - perhaps I also have a mild allergy that's popping up now? hmmmmmm.... something to think about. I will so miss my morning berries alongside my avocado and eggs :(

Other than that, I'm eating a lot of sweet potato and butternut squash. I read an article, below, about too much vitamin A and I know these two have a lot of vitamin A. Before w30 when I was still primarily paleo, I still ate them once a week maybe. Now it's more like every other day I have one or the other. Could this be a factor?

http://paleohacks.com/questions/102136/too-much-vitamin-a-dry-skin-chapped-lips#axzz2LGLkZLHc

I'm also eating a ton more nuts. I used to be a plain almond fanatic but now I eat all kinds of nuts. Cashews and Macadamia are primary.

Can anyone else think of anything different? I really hope it's not any of my w30 faves causing this problem! What should I do? Stop eating berries, sweet pot/butternut and/or nuts?

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Personally I doubt it would be the sweet potato or butternut squash, the answers on that page would seem to back that up. I think it's more likely to be the berries or nuts. You could try cutting all of them out and see if it improves. If it does you could add them back one at a time, like a reintro to see if you can find the culprit. Then you'd be able to enjoy the others. good luck and let us know how you get on.

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Sweet potato and butternut squash do not contain actual vitamin A but pro-vitamines which the body can turn into vitamin A.

A conversion which in many people is very inefficient.

And the body would not convert more than it can handle anyway. Nature is a bit smarter than that.

You can rule out that those veges would cause a problem with high vitamin A. In the worst case they would color you orange :)

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My lips are very chapped as well. Peeling, and sore. I keep putting Bert's Bees and sometimes neosporin on them but they're still pretty ugly.

i've been eating a ton of avocado, also lots of coconut, which I wasn't used to previously. Both of those are tropical like the mango; could they be connected?

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I live in Florida luckily so it's not the winter for me :D. I really think it's got to be the strawberries. My family history with the allergy (mom) coupled with the fact that I've been eating them litereally everyday for 25 days makes the most sense. I just never had an issue with them before is why I didn't think about it. I'm going to cut those out first and see if it gets better. Thanks for the help in talking it out. I'll let you know how it goes!

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