Friday, January 4, 2013

Foods I gave up for my Whole30 Jan 2013

I eat pretty clean normally. I found that by eating a Paleo template and by adopting a Primal life style (as much as possible) I could maintain my weight loss easier.

Note, I did not say it was easy to maintain 70+ pounds and go through a major weight loss transformation.  I just find it easier by  eating low inflammatory foods, keeping a good structure and Primal life balance.

I work pretty hard every day to make sure I've got good food to eat & cook, get my walking and get my strength training in day-in-day out. Getting enough sleep and eeking in my family time and photography along the way is part of the equation. Some how, I work a full time job in there, too- with commute.  It is a true balancing act.

This article by the Whole9 group (read the dessert- habit article here ) and knowing that Nom-Nom Paleo was going to be "cruise director" - AKA- posting her recipes for Whole30 really help push me over the fence and got me to commit to 30 days of really clean Paleo.

I promised myself I would work as hard and as long as I needed to work in the first year of weight maintenance to :
  • get my best plan in place, functional, and tested across travel, emotional stuff, family stuff, parties, holidays and eating out.  
  •  The Whole30 is my final exam.

I've waited 40 years to get this all together. What's one more year/month?

Here's a list of items that I gave up this month for the Whole30. I did experience fatigue on New Years Eve, as I started transitioning to the Whole30 on 1-1-2013.

1.  Bacon. I do not buy pastured bacon, no nitrites or sugar added. Expensive! I don't do much bacon anyway. It's more of a vacation only item. I may source pastured bacon from local places later in the year.

2. Think Thin Bars. They do not trigger over eating and they are portable and high protein. But they have soy and whey. I think that the whey may be setting off sinus problems and possibly acne. Usually, I can have whey isolate, but I'm starting to wonder. I need to be off them for a while and I may or may not re-introduce.

3. Medifast products- once in a blue moon, I would have one- like a pancake or brownie. Didn't trigger, but soy based. My weight loss program was Medifast. I transitioned in Feb 2012.

4. 85% or darker Chocolate- I had two very small squares a night. Did not trigger and I loved it. But, I can also live without it. Very much a habit.

5. Rotisserie Chickens from Costco or any grocery. This was my "I'm too tired to cook" fall back item. Yeah, this one is coming back

5.5 Packaged, gluten free chicken sausage. Kind of loved this. Also coming back in Feb.

6. Restaurant foods- except for Fish, seafood, steaks, and/or Chipolte's carnitas or Elevation Burger ( 100% grass fed burgers cooked without canola or corn oil) . It's almost impossible to escape vegetable oils when dining out at lower cost restaurants. I bring my own sometimes. It's not fun to have an accidental gluten exposure. Occasional exposure to canola or corn oil, I can live with.

7. Sea Snacks - Seaweed from Trader Joe's. I smuggle these into the movie theater and I  have a package once a week. It's my popcorn, chip substitute. They are off limits because they contain a smidge of canola oil.

8. Alaskan Salmon Burgers - frozen from Trader Joes. They also have a small amount of canola oil. On the fence about these.

9. Almond milk beverage in the box- sugarless. There's all kinds of ingredients that are not Whole30 compliant. I was pretty much off of this in the last month or so.

10. Beef Jerky- I had for portable snacks, but there is added sugar. And loads of sodium. Probably wont' come back, but I'll probably source some Paleo friendly jerky in the future.  

That's the scoop. What have you given up for the Whole30?


  1. I've done three Whole 30s. I had to eliminate Ezekiel bread, brown rice, peanut butter and Greek yogurt...and that was about it, I think. I did keep the unsweetened almond milk, 2 ounces in my morning coffee. I rarely eat beans so not having them for a month wasn't unusual. I used to eat oatmeal every day for breakfast but got out of that a while ago, so no issues there. I hate "giving up" the plain Greek yogurt, because that's what I mix my ground flaxseed and chia seeds into, and when I'm on a Whole 30, there really isn't anything I can mix them with. That is the one aspect of it that I found inconvenient. Bacon's not something I eat normally; like you, if we go out for breakfast (very rare event), I will get a side of bacon (2 slices) with eggs, but I never have it in the house. I got away from "nutrition bars" years ago, haven't had soda since 2007, I don't snack on cheese or add it to meals...the Whole 30 didn't do anything awesome for me (i.e., I weighed exactly the same on day 31 as I had on day 1) for several reasons: I don't believe I have or have ever had any food sensitivities/allergies so eliminating the usual culprits doesn't change anything, 2) The things I had to eliminate -- ezekiel, peanut butter, yogurt - aren't things I eat tons of anyway. I have small servings of each daily, 3) So even with those foods gone, Paleo is pretty much how I eat already anyway: lots of raw veggies, some cooked veggies, meat/fish/poultry/eggs, some fruit, lots of water. I didn't expect to see any mind-blowing changes but did it more just to show myself that I can absolutely live without some of my staple foods. Please keep us posted on your Whole 30!

    1. Thanks, Norma. Will do. I think it's worth the try to fine tune the diet. Glad you did the Whole30.

  2. Loved the dessert article, so very true.

    It will be interesting to see what happens to your taste buds, habits, body this month.

    I think these exercises are very good for mature food thinkers.

    (The tantrum/rebel thinkers often get into trouble with them, but that is a whole different topic.)

    I am really enjoying this series of posts from you.

    I dropped wheat long ago. I dropped yogurt this summer. I have bit of cheese on occasion, but not regularly. I eat almost nothing that is processed (additives).

    Like Norma, I eat chia seeds and flax meal every day. I mix mine with my oatmeal. So dropping all grains ( I am down to just oats) creates complexities.

    1. Thanks for commenting, Vickie. I think that knowing exactly what's working now is so key. I can tell my sinuses are much better off. Once I typed that long list yesterday, I knew I would be going back to it right around Feb 1 or so.

      I'll be doing a very regimented, carefully planned, hand written journal of food re-introdcution in Feb 2012. The reduction in sinus congestion really gives me a good night's sleep. That impacts my whole day's productivity and how I feel.

      I think that my Whole30 will go way beyond just weight maintenance. One other challenge is possibly doing an Auto-immune protocol later in the summer or fall. Cracking the code to the foods that keep me well really is motivating.

      I hear you on the tantrum/rebel thinkers. I shudder to think of the years spent eating my trigger foods.

  3. Wow that's a lot of things to drop! I'm with Vickie on this one - these kinds of exercises can be very helpful in learning to exercise control, especially while on weight maintenance.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Diane. RE: the foods I dropped were mainly convenience or travel well foods.
      I was a little panicky when I was setting up some outings this week where I knew I would be away from my kitchen, stove, and microwave. I stopped stressing when I realized I could bring along my lunch bag, cold pack and have "picnics" wherever I needed to go. My friends and family are so used to it by now. They expect it. :)

  4. You gave up Rotisserie Chickens.. wow.. I don't think I could, lol.

  5. I know!!! I probably buy one every 2 weeks or so. Fast and quick protein, no cooking.

    I'll probably get a chicken for "realz" and roast it up in the oven or slow cooker. I got a pressure cooker for Christmas, so doing bone broth in the winter is nice.

  6. from what i've read recently, the "dangers" of the nitrates/nitrites in bacon (and other lightly-processed meats) is greatly overblown, just like the dangers of mercury in fish....

    when i did the Personal Paleo Code (very like the Whole 30) last year, the hardest things to forgo belonged to the dairy category. i only became reconciled to coconut milk in my coffee when i got the milk-frother! boy-howdy, though, did i benefit from the switch! it's not hard to make an acceptable "protein bar" though, and other home-made convenience foods aren't difficult, either! :-)

    1. Hi Tess, yes- Jason Seib talked about naturally occurring nitrates in foods like celery and melons in the Everyday paleo seminar. I MUST try my milk frother and coconut milk for my coffee. Sounds like a great weekend drink.

      After the whole30 is over, I may look into homemade protein bars. Probably better. As long as they don't trigger me to want to over eat. Thanks for stopping by.

    2. Somewhere in the back of my mind is a note about something odd (maybe oranges) as allowing the body to properly process naturally occurring nitrates

    3. Melons are migraine trigger for me and allergy trigger for one of my kids and also my nephew. I wonder if it is the nitrates

  7. Very interesting. We buy bacon on occasion for BLT's. I only buy bars when I have a long travel day and want to be sure I have something to eat if I'm running to the next flight and can't stop for food. I've never even seen any Medifast food. I do eat the rotisserie chickens occasionally but have not tried the sausage. I use almond milk in my oatmeal but don't drink it. Chocolate and jerky are rare treats. We usually eat out once a week but I do not think I have a problem with gluten.

    1. We grew up on BLT's in the summer (mid-west) when the early summer lettuce was ready. Now I skip the bread.

  8. I gave up rotisserie chicken and bacon last year. I think there is a lot of hidden sodium added to those rotisserie Chickens, and so much cheaper and easier to make your own :)

    1. Hi simply me, I'm becoming a salt snob. I'll only use sea salt right now. I find it pretty tasty and the processes meats don't taste good to me now that I'm using the sea salt. I like the way the house smells when I do chicken, plus, I now make bone broth, too. Good stuff.

      Realistically, I will go back to rotisserie chicken, but I'll probably buy it less often.

  9. I think most of us here, are not only concerned about nitrates in a " causing cancer" kind of way. Speaking for myself, i am just as concerned about migraines, concerned about that change of pressure in my head then causing a balance issue or even a fall, concerned that not feeling well will then lead to poor food choices or a lack of exercise or sleep or emotional negativity.

    Karen - what type of protein base are you considering these days, in view of your 30 days philosophy (or what you will do at the end of your 30 days)? I am asking about protein powder you add yourself or the base of protein used in bars, etc? Is it whey based? Rice based? What have you been doing? What do you think you will do?

    1. Vickie- that is so true. I still have sinus headaches (less often) and very rarely positional vertigo. If I could stop eating something and stop the headaches all together, I would be thrilled. The Whole30 is probably my best way to find out.

      The only other thing I could try ( later in the year) is a Paleo Auto-Immune protocol. No nightshades (tomatoes) or eggs. Crossing my fingers the Whole30 will get my food pretty optimized.

      Protein bases in the Whole30 are : eggs, hard boiled egg whites, Ground turkey, chicken, bison burgers!, grass feed ground beef, hake, maybe some salmon, very occasionally some shell fish (price has gone up)

      Before Whole30 it was all of the above. The protein bars were soy and whey based. I used a protein powder (whey isolate) based called Designer Whey Protein- Chocolate. Found it at Trader Joe's. Good in coconut milk. I know I can tolerate some rice flour now and then. I know soy is all GMO and I may or may not have problems (skin) with whey isolate protein.

      I know I'll have some answers in Feb when I slowly bring back foods. Good experiment.

  10. I did look at difference between egg beaters and egg whites at store today. The numbers are nearly identical. But the contents are different. Egg whites only contain egg whites, egg beaters contain additives. I think at the time I switched (from real eggs). I was concerned about my cholesterol and was looking for morning protein source to hold me for exercise. I am quite sure that I did not even know egg whites were sold.

  11. Thank you for the Dessert article link, Karen. So, so true..sigh. I do not follow a Paleo diet but my goal for this year is to start replacing the usual desserts with fruit. This would be really huge for me!
    Since I am at a wt. that I can live with, I am focusing on reducing some of the foods that do not strictly nourish my body. Having read Norma's blog for a while and now yours, I am more motivated to change some things in my life. Next, strength training, which I have not done for about 3 decades and I really need to!