Days 8-10

Hey there.

I am still on the diet although a winged version of phase 2.  My hunger has returned a bit and I’ve definitely been eating more but much less than I used to and the diminished amount of carbs seems to be keeping my heartburn in check which is fabulous.  I had some heartburn Tuesday after a meal out but there was a REALLY tasty sauce on the fish I had which usually points to garlic and thus….  I ate out again last night without garlic, with a few sips of my bf’s beer and even some wasabi and had no problem at all.  Really wondering how much the carbs have been throwing me off….

Basically what I’ve been doing is eating what I was before, aiming to eat at least 2-3 servings of veg a day for my digestion and then adding one starch serving per day and maybe fruit, maybe not.  I’m trying to have some treats but keep it to around 100 calories when I do that.  So far so good.  I’m trying (and succeeding) to do the diet I did a few years back when I was about 25 lbs lighter than I am now.  Having tastes over super size portions (which slight undereating seems to be critical for my heartburn and IBS stuff).

The addition of the carbs has definitely helped my IBS though.  I’m now going to the bathroom once per day and it’s not difficult.  For a very long time I could not eat so much veg but I’m doing pretty well with that this time around – anywhere from 2-5 servings per day with – maybe -a fruit serving.  I’d say 90% of the veg is cooked which is always better for me.  Any fruits are all things that are not at all appropriate for South Beach (raisins, dried apricot, banana) but my stomach tolerates them well so whatever.  For grains I’ve had quinoa, rice (in sushi) and tonight I’m having some sort of medley with couscous in it.  I’m sticking to about 1/2-3/4 of a cup for the carb portions.

I also feel much MUCH less wonky with a little carbs in my life.  Like wow, completely different. Less spaced out, less dizzy, less THIRSTY, less achy and less dead tired.  What has not changed is that I’m irritated.  This – to me – is less about the diet and more about not eating my feelings.  I eat when I’m feeling annoyed by people/situations which turns out to be often and I’m not doing that right now.  I also eat when I’m working too hard without a break. I’m blowing off an event tonight to take care of myself in that regard.  It’s tough for me to do that but I’m realizing it’s necessary.  Self-care is critical.  My mental idea of what I can do is not always in alignment to what my MIND actually needs. Still learning that one.

So that’s where I am.  Still low carb with a carb serving and maybe a fruit.  I’m away all this weekend and eating on the fly so it’ll be interesting to see WHAT I can find to eat (hard to find cooked vegetables at a fast food place) – sort of dreading not eating well – but it is what is going on.  Hoping for at least the ability not to just eat bread all weekend or the sad fast food salad.  Wendy’s might be a save.  We’ll see.  Wish me luck!



Day 7, Recap

Super tired this morning as I mentioned after 9 hours of sleep. Whew.

B at 8a:

2 scrambled eggs with a serving of asparagus, mushrooms and feta scrambled in

S at 10:45a:

Baby bel (these have not been a problem since that first day – score as they are tasty!)


Feeling really hungry today. Weird.  Hoping I brought enough for lunch; otherwise, nuts it is!


Holding out for lunch until 1p but I am really hungry today. So weird.  I had that huge breakfast!  Wow, cramps, like the doubled over kind.  Oof – not fun at office. So positive, I’m sort of moving stuff out of colon more often (just got some movement there but not fully).  Negative, I’m constipated so nothing’s moving so easily and cramps!  Hoping the addition of brown rice or sweet potato helps this.

Lunch at 1p:

  • 4 oz or so of turkey
  • 1 c. roasted summer squashes
  • 1 c. roasted carrots


Already hungry.  Not sure what’s up with me.  Also went to bathroom again.  As I said, slow going but at least there is progress, right? Stomach just feels a little weird today.


15 almonds

Dinner at 5p:

  • Cobb Salad – lettuce, carrot, avocado, bacon, turkey, little bit of feta and olive oil
  • Cashews

Wow, super meh dinner.  Was excited to eat out but this salad was LAME.  I added the cashews b/c I’ve been so hungry today which is weird.  Not sure why this day is different from other days.

Snack at 9:30p:

Cheese stick

I never eat this late but I was hungry. Again.  Also the bf was eating popcorn and, being hungry, I wanted to eat something ‘on plan’ so I would keep my stomach going okay.

Truth be told, though, my stomach was weird all day.  I moved my bowel 2X but never really felt GREAT.  I’m super tired and eager for sleep.  More tomorrow.


Good morning, reflections….

Today I start day 7 and have reached the end of the first week. Whew.   Observations of this week/weekend (it’s Monday today):

  • I am desperately thirsty all the time despite drinking a lot.
  • I am pretty achy, more so than usual, and when I roll my body does not seem so tight – what?
  • Stomach is mostly quiet.
  • A little burping but nothing even remotely approaching ‘reflux.’
  • I am never hungry until I am and then a protein snack knocks it out for at least an hour.
  • My sugar/dark chocolate cravings are gone.
  • I really really wanted treats as I worked this weekend.  Noticing this allowed me to reflect that I pretty much take breaks over these work periods by eating snacks and watching TV.  When I’m working on these huge school projects, I get very overwhelmed. This weekend, I was able to just watch TV and drink water to get through it but the snacking is clearly habitual b/c, until I was distracted, I was craving the snacks like a junkie and even when I got through it I was impatient and short-tempered.  I ended up hand sewing more than usual due to wanting to not snack – which worked – but sometimes I’m watching TV to get AWAY from sewing so I’ll have to work that out.  In any event, good to know.
  • I am still intensely tired.  I slept 9 hours last night and had to FORCE myself to get up today and still felt tired leaving for work.

Last night, I did some quick internet research about the fatigue and thirst.  Apparently you can go beyond mild ‘acidosis’ (the goal) into something called ‘ketoacidosis’ (not the goal) which is not as healthy and can also lead to kidney stones.  What?  In any event, the extreme thirst is the warning sign of that.  Other symptoms are extreme fatigue and more aches than usual.   Hmm.

In that light, I thought I’d move onto Phase 2 of South Beach sooner than later.  I don’t want to ding the weight loss (which is clearly happening) but I also don’t want to overtax my system especially as the semester begins to wind down.  I did a half hour study of the book last night and that lead me to another South Beach/IBS conundrum:  It looks like P2 is pretty much adding 1 serving of low glycemic carbs – which are often high-fiber which, due to the IBS, I can’t digest, and some lower sugar fruits which again, due to IBS, I can’t digest.  That said, there are a few things I do eat on the acceptable list so I’m going to add them back in, a little at a time, to make sure I don’t throw my stomach off.  I’d really like to maintain this level of peace as long as possible if not on a more permanent (as much as anything is permanent) basis.  The foods I digest well are:

  • small amounts of sweet potato
  • small amounts of brown rice
  • green peas

I’ve had terrific success with sweet potato in the past.  It’s one of my super safe foods so that’s awesome that it is there.  I’m going to add half a sweet potato a few times this week to my dinner to see if it helps with the fatigue and thirst without changing my reflux or IBS situation.

As for fruit, my one safe fruit – banana – is still verboten. Ooops on that one.  Almost everything else is super sketchy in other than ‘flavoring’ (1-2 bites) amounts.  I live a life of almost no fruit now, so I’m going to keep that going for the first few weeks of P2 so I can really get a feel for the carb experiment to see its impact, testing each carb on its own for a few days.  This is a great opportunity to determine if I’m NOT doing as well on a currently ‘safe food’ as I thought I was.  Of course everything is a bit of a reach due to this work lunch tomorrow (I’ve eaten at this restaurant before.  I’m not sure they even HAVE plain protein and veg (it’s Italian pizza/pasta and it’s already a challenge to stay away from garlic and tomato there which are total no-gos for me)) but I’m going to do my best.  I think if I have real fallout from lunch, I’ll likely do P1 for a few more days to clear out and then add my beloved sweet potato.

Ultimately, I’m very comfortable on the diet as I’m on it now.  If I were feeling no side effects, I’d just keep going, but the achyness and fatigue are super intrusive so they’ve got to go.   Work in progress but I’m really loving the relative stomach silence I’m getting. I’m almost like a normal person.  Wow.


Day 6

I was in more of a groove today with the diet and got a little creative.  Stomach is doing well (although I just ate dinner with a lot of dairy so we’ll see). Here’s a recap:

B:  1 c. Fage 2% plain

L:   Chicken salad* and Carrots and Hummus

S:    Baby bel

S:    15 almonds

D:    Taco Salad**

Chicken Salad:  Half a chicken breast mixed with Miracle Whip (which is suspect is NOT on South Beach, oh well) and chopped almonds and served in a lettuce roll up.  Was tasty enough.

Taco Salad:  Half a hamburger cooked with 1 c. black beans with cumin and coriander, mixed with 2T of shredded cheddar and half a plain greek yogurt over lettuce.  Very tasty.

Other pertinent facts:

I’m a bit constipated.  I don’t feel badly and I did actually clear out this afternoon (after lunch ended up with deep cramping for about 10 minutes and then it cleared out) but I think the lack of carbs is leaving me a bit slow.  In point of fact, whenever I was constipated before, I could count on a dinner including rice to move things along.  I’m hoping as I eat more vegetables (which I really didn’t do too much of today after all), this will be less of an issue.

Had enough free time to roll out which is good b/c I’m really feeling like my legs and ankles are tight.  This is putting a HUGE crimp in my ability to exercise.  I’m going to restart my achilles tendonitis PT stuff (just a little) to see if it helps. Otherwise, off to the chiro.  That said, my back and hips are in pretty good shape which is nice.

I’m feeling super tired.  Some of it I suspect is from school work but I’m hoping to get some real sleep tonight.

Tomorrow is Day 7!  Wow, have almost made it through a week of this.  My goal is 14 days total, which will take a little over 2 weeks as I think there may have to be some breaks in there due to a business lunch on Tuesday and a weekend away next weekend.  But I’m going to attempt to stay on the low carb.  I’m really feeling overall well with no heartburn.  That almost never happens.  We’ll see if my body is just having a moment or if there’s something real going on.  Interesting.

Day 5

Yes, there is a day 5.  It was a little touch and go as I was running out to Pilates this morning but it dawned on me.  Tired, yes.  Bored with food, yes.  Heartburn, practically non-existent, even after the Bunny incident of last night.  Hmm.

I really want to live in a world of no-to-little heartburn.  IBS, I can deal with but the heartburn really drives me bananas.  So that led me to skip ‘picking up a Clif bar’ on the way to Pilates (even though I really wanted that for breakfast) and to nuke up a couple chicken-maple sausages and eat them quickly instead.  I’d like to see if the heartburn thing is temporary or if – like other people have reported – this diet really helps that.  If so, I will make this work.  It’s important to me.

I’ve scrapped my food plan (too rigid) but have made notes of things that challenge me.  I’m working and taking classes with a lot of work attached to them.  I need to be able to not have to cook each day.  I *prefer* to eat fresh food but it’s just not tenable.  So when I came home from Pilates (having picked up plain almonds as a post-Pilates snack – easy to get everywhere , must remember that), I made 6 hard boiled eggs and roasted up Asparagus and baby carrots so I’d have them for the week.  Then I ate the crock pot chicken I’d blown off with carrots and hummus for lunch.  Easy enough.

Finished my frozen bananas for a snack and just finished a great dinner of scrambled eggs with feta, mushrooms and asparagus with a side of sausage.  I’m still hungry so I’ll eat a cheese stick.

So my new list is:

Keep handy protein on hand – Fage, cheese sticks, supermarket turkey

Keep cooked veg on hands.  If no time, roast up baby carrots b/c you don’t even have to wash or clean them.  Also frozen spinach for omelets.

Breakfast doesn’t have to be eggs.  It can be chicken or fish or even a hamburger.  I love eggs for dinner – but if I eat them what to have for breakfast; well why not dinner?

I need to get more bananas and avocado.  I love these things – I’ve run out. I need to keep foods I love around.

So today:

B: 2 sausages

S: 15 almonds

L: half roasted chicken breast, fair number of carrots with hummus

S: 1/2 frozen banana

D: 2 scrambled eggs, sausage, feta, asparagus and mushrooms

S: babybel (we’ll see if I survive this time!)

Good night!

South Beach, Day 4

3p and I’m bored.  Let’s recap the day though.

Pretty much sticking with my food as described this morning.  Still woke up too late to roll or meditate although a cup of Tazo Zen tea (green) was drunk this morning and really did help to wake me up.  (Since I almost never drink caffeine, even a cup of tea can help me.)

Breakfast at 8:00a:

  • scrambled eggs
  • sausage

Tasty but meh, totally over eggs.  And I like eggs. Hmm.

Super busy here at work so I was very aware when I got ‘actually’ hungry for a snack:

Snack at 11:15a:

1/2 2% plain Fage and some enzymes

Tasty and did the job at least for a bit.

Lunch at 1p:

Again, suddenly hungry so I stopped working and ate:

  • Couple slices of turkey
  • many carrots (20?) with hummus

I’m suddenly having some heartburn (it’s 3p) after nothing all day which reminded me to type this up.  I suspect the tea and is why I don’t normally DO tea but really this is so minor I suspect it will pass when I snack.

Snack at 3p:

15 almonds. Yum.

‘Dinner’ at 7p:

Rest of Easter Candy: Reese’s Bunny.

Oh well.

Day 4 – is it?

Having a sort of rough time here, although my stomach is feeling great.  So I’m torn.  I’m just so tired (not sleeping – suspect hormones) and I’m super bored with the food which really, is that such a big deal? It’s been three days.  The degree to which I’m unhappy makes me think this is more mental than anything else.  It’s not like it’s been weeks without something.

Oddly enough, I’m not missing sugar at all (despite the chocolate last night) but rather carbs and the ‘comfort of food’.  There’s nothing really comforting about these meals.  They are healthy and that’s it.  The fatigue is a likely contributor too (I got about 5 hours of sleep last night).  But I’m bored to a degree that I’m not cooking which I don’t hate to do (although I am busy).

Today’s meal plan is eggs/sausage; turkey with carrots and hummus for lunch, crockpot chicken breast (cooking now) with asparagus and pea pods (which veg I’ll have to make later) for dinner – snacks of Fage, almonds and banana for dessert. This is not a terrible food day but I resent it because I’m realizing how much ‘treats’ get me through the day.  I resent it even though I’m not hungry and my stomach is better than it’s been in a long time, despite its moments, and that overall I feel way less bloated than usual (although I doubt I’ve lost any actual weight yet).  The brain is weird.