I’m sitting here on a Sunday morning in my bed with a cookbook, notebook, Pinterest, and printouts covering my comforter.
I bought a copy of Well Fed 2: More Paleo Recipes for People Who Love to Eat (aff link) at Barnes & Noble because I wanted a new cookbook for dinner. We’ve been trying to eat less starchy/carby foods at night and I was having a hard time thinking of good recipes to try because I’m obsessed with bread, pasta, and rice. I figured this cookbook would be a great place to start for some new ideas. I even posted on IG that we’d probably never go Whole30 or paleo.
You can see where this is going already, can’t you?
And then I started reading the book. Which lead to Googling. Which led to Pinterest. Which read to more Googling. Which lead to me bookmarking ALL THE RECIPES in the cookbook.
And now I’m sitting here actually contemplating doing a version of Whole30 or Paleo.
WHO AM I?!?
I say “a version of it” because I’m not entirely convinced I need to give up dairy for 30 days, or ever. Why? Well, I’ve lived dairy-free before. 100% dairy-free with not even the slightest bit of milk proteins allowed in my diet. I did it for several months while nursing both of my children. When I finally reintroduced dairy after I finished nursing, I didn’t see any negative effects as far as my gut health, bloating, ect. My thyroid wasn’t any better or worse with or without diary.
I’m not saying I’m still going to eat ice cream and yogurt, but I’m most certainly going to drink my ice cold glass of chocolate milk after a hard workout and use butter (Whole30 actually allows for clarified butter/ghee now) and have cheese every now and then. I don’t eat a ton of dairy as it is, so I’m not sure eliminating it would do any good.
We will, however, be giving up grains, legumes, processed sugars, and gluten.
My main goal, actually, is to give gluten-free living another shot. The side effects from Hashimotos are getting worse, and I’m trying to find a new doctor to look into them more. In the meantime, I’m willing to try other measures to help lessen my symptoms, especially now that I’m restating my training with a serious PR goal in mind. My hopes in trying this new eating plan is that I can see how gluten is effecting my thyroid functions and overall sense of well-being.
I tried a cold turkey, no plan, throw out all the gluten regime once. I lasted one week. I’m hoping that with a solid plan, recipes to try, guidelines to follow, and support from others doing the same thing, I can give my body a really good chance at feeling better and figure out if there are certain foods that cause me to feel worse.
There is no cure for Hashimotos. I do not believe a diet can rid my body of an autoimmune disease. Let’s be clear about that. I’m not even entirely convinced this diet will result in palpable changes. There are many people who develop true, medical gluten sensitivities because of Hashimotos (autoimmune diseases like to multiply and stack on top of each other like that.) I’m not convinced I’m one of them, so this plan may not work, but I feel like I owe it to myself, and my family who suffers the side effects of an overly-tired version of myself way too often, a chance.
So I won’t call myself a Whole30-er. I won’t call myself Paleo. I’m technically not “eating clean”. I don’t really know what I’ll call it. I know I’m not following the rules and I am 100% ok with it. Please save me the comments about how I’m weak and whatnot. It will fall on deaf ears. Turns out, there are many people who do a version of paleo or Whole30 and still experience amazing results. I love when the Internet tells me I’m not alone. All aboard the validation train, y’all!
My Trader Joe’s cart that’s missing my normal bevvy of delicious treats like my favorite English toffee.
I’m also more willing to try this new way of eating because it’s not a diet. It’s more of a lifestyle change that I could possibly adopt for the rest of my life, if I see results. I am, in no way shape or form, trying to lose weight here. This is 100% about my Hashimotos and not about a scale or how my clothes fit. If it helps me to gain more muscle, then that’s a true bonus. I’m actually a bit nervous as to how this will change how I feel during training since I won’t have pasta and pizza as my go-to carb load before long runs and races.
The husband will be along for the ride, too, and I’m so thankful for that. We won’t make the kids go all-in with us. They will still get dairy and grains at breakfast and lunch. They’ll eat what we eat for dinner, however. They’re really great eaters and we’ve always told them “what’s on the table is what’s for dinner” and it works 95% of time. I might make them spaghetti instead of cauliflower rice, but I’m hoping to not have to do that very often because I know I’ll want to grab a forkful of pasta.
We’re slowly introducing some of the principles of Whole30/Paleo/Clean eating over the next few weeks and jumping in a little deeper once we get back from vacation next month. I’m not the type of person who can decide to start this on Monday and go all out at once (see previous diet change fail above.) I need time to warm up to the idea. We’re going to start phasing out some foods now and slowly begin stocking up the pantry with compliant foods to avoid a huge grocery bill next month. I’m also not about wasting the food we already have. I know there are people who have done a true kitchen clean-out and thrown out/donated everything non-compliant, but that makes my budget want to weep. Not happening. While I know I could stay compliant on vacation, I simply don’t want to. I’d rather wait until we get back where I can focus and plan. Vacation is not the time for me to worry about what I’m eating. Not yet, anyway.
So there it is. I’m doing something I said I’d never do, eating crow, and putting my foot in my mouth. I’ll be updating my progress here every so often and probably posting way too many photos of cauliflower “rice” on Instagram. I’ll do weekly meal wrap-ups if y’all are into that sort of thing.
This has become the LONGEST BLOG POST ABOUT NOTHING EVER, so I’ll leave you with a picture of my yummy lunch from the other day.
Cauliflower “rice” with bacon, avocado, tomatoes, garlic, and asparagus, cooked in ghee.
Have you tried Whole30/Paleo/Clean Eating? I’d love to hear any tips or tricks you have for making it an enjoyable experience, because it does seem overwhelming!