Accidental Sorghum (Whole30 Day 5/Day 6)

Did you know sorghum was a grain?

It is.

This fact dawned on me as I was falling asleep, a full 4 hours after I added 1/2 cup sorghum flour to our delicious veggie burgers.

You see, in gluten-free baking, sorghum is sort of a holy grail flour. Gluten-Free Girl says its the gf flour most akin to wheat flour, so it works great in all sorts of baked goods. I have been used to using sorghum as a go-to flour whenever a recipe doesn’t specify a particular type of alternative to use.

The particular recipe I was using last night was this one: Super Healthy Veggie Burgers. It is supposed to be a grain-free burger, but I obviously sabotaged that bit. It says to use 1/2 c almond flour and 1/2 c any other ground nut/seed. I used the 1/2 c almond and 1/2 c hazelnut, but I was increasing the recipe by 1.5, so I needed to add one more 1/2 c. Naturally, I reached for the sorghum.

And there you have it. Accidental sorghum.

I’m not sure why it didn’t dawn on me that sorghum could possibly be off limits, but the thought didn’t even come close to crossing my mind. The mistake is even funnier considering that, while we were cooking, Tom and I were talking about how we both had a humorous fear that we were going to accidentally eat something we weren’t supposed to.

Well, it happened, and we managed to survive.

I haven’t told Tom about the mistake yet. It’ll be interesting to see if he’s noticed feeling any different today. I, for one, definitely had some not-nice feelings in my belly this morning. But sometimes it’s hard to tell what that’s coming from – it could just be from the inordinate amount of veggies, and thus fiber, we’ve been consuming. For now, we’re feeding the leftover veggie burgers to Ada and hoping for the best!

Other than that goof up, the past 2 days have been great. Tom and I have both experience a reduction in cravings and haven’t been finding it so hard to get through the day. One thing that has helped is our realization that we should be eating HUGE meals. Whole30 doesn’t recommend snacking (something I obviously was unaware of on Day 3). Instead, they recommend eating pretty large portions of food at each meal – 1-2 palm-sized portions of protein, a whole bunch of veg, a thumb-sized portion of oil/butter, plus some seeds/nuts or avocado. This includes breakfast – hence our turkey burger + egg breakfasts.

The sugar-crazed madness I was in on Day 3 has also definitely waned. On Day 4, I had an apple with my breakfast, and didn’t even finish it. Today and yesterday, I had breakfast without any carbs at all. I think this has been pretty helpful in setting me up for a successful food day both days. Afternoons have also been fine. While I am still incorporating 1 snack most afternoons, I am making sure it follows the Whole30 meal template – i.e., mostly protein.

Here’s a recap of the last two days and what I’ve had so far today:

Day 5

breakfast – turkey burger, egg, cooked kale with seeds, sesame oil, avocado, coconut flakes

lunch – sweet potato w/walnuts and pumpkin seeds and ghee, onions, peppers, mushrooms, chicken drumstick, 1 piece bacon. Small serving chia with granola.

(no snack b/c I was going to yoga)

dinner – coconut crusted chicken, peas, cauliflower rice, avocado sauce

 

Day 6

breakfast – 2 eggs, kale, chia with granola

lunch – coconut crusted chicken, cauliflower rice, sweet potato and onion, 1/2 an avocado

snack – 1/2 banana, 4 strawberries, coconut milk, coconut flakes, cinnamon – very decadent! and verging on too much of a treat to be Whole30 compliant…but o well.

dinner – veggie burgers, ratatouille

 

 

Day 7

breakfast – chia with granola, cooked kale with 2 eggs

lunch – chia with 1/2 a banana and granola, turkey burger, 1 egg, 1 piece bacon, 1/2 an avocado, steamed asparagus

 

Tom and I are leaving in a few hours to fly to Toledo, OH for a memorial service for my grandmother who passed away at age 91 last December. We are packing some food with us, but it will be interesting to see how Whole30 on the road goes! Stay tuned!

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To hate, or not to hate? Whole30 Day 4

As I sit here eating my last serving of chia – there have been 3 today – and reflecting on Day 4, I can decidedly say that it started better than it has ended.

Last night, I wouldn’t have predicted that.

To rewind – after my post yesterday, the afternoon went pretty well. I had one more snack before dinner, and then Tom cooked sausages with sweet potato fries and arugula. Dinner was delicious, but the cravings came back. Once again, I was wandering hopelessly around the kitchen wondering what, if anything, would be a good choice. I managed to distract myself, and found that after 10 minutes or so, the cravings were gone. We had some nettle tea before bed, and that was that.

One surprise that I didn’t see coming was that I felt strangely relaxed before going to sleep. I truly felt like I could relax my muscles and ease into deep sleep. I don’t have trouble sleeping (other than the obvious trouble of having a 1-year old), but I do have trouble completely relaxing at night, and I often wake up with a stiff neck. Some of that is due to curling my body around Ada, but the difficulty relaxing is there whether or not I’m sleeping next to her.

However, even though the evening was relatively smooth, I had read earlier in the day on the Whole30 Timeline that today would be the day I would start hating everyone and everything. The desperation I felt immediately following dinner last night felt like a warning that I would wake up today filled with bile. So despite easing into sleep, I expected to wake up with fury.

But I woke up pretty much okay with everyone and everything. I wouldn’t say I felt fantastic – still tired from being up with a crying baby, still stiff and achy even though I felt relaxed last night (maybe stiff from the coffee? that’s one cause and effect I’m exploring), and still hankering for some green tea – sans honey. But that is still better than daggers coming out of my eyes aimed at everything in my path, as promised by the Timeline.

I stayed on track and had a productive and happy morning. I didn’t have cravings too bad after lunch and didn’t feel the need for coffee. But Ada needed more attention than I could give her and still get my work done, and I got an email from our lender listing more items requested by the underwriter for our loan – that on top of several other dangling threads related to things I need to do personally and for our big move coming up and Ada’s birthday and my mind felt full. I wanted to cross things off my growing to-do list, but I was tethered to my computer/job.

And I found that I did start to hate all the things.

I’m not sure it’s fair to blame my bad mood this afternoon on the Whole30, though. I allowed myself a snack a few hours after lunch and didn’t feel all too deprived. Maybe something happens when the bad food is out of my body that allows buried emotions to rise to the surface. Or maybe it’s just that every month or so I feel sorry for myself for having a really boring job. I’d like to change that, but it would probably mean not being able to stay at home with Ada. That change will come soon enough. Whatever the cause, I ended the day feeling frustrated.

Tom had also had a rough day and had spent most of the afternoon hungry. So he grabbed some hazelnuts and we went for a walk. We took Ada to the park and let her play on the swings and the slide. When we came back, Tom cooked dinner while I exercised. All of this helped to relieve the frustration somewhat, but even after a bath with Ada and a hearty dinner, I am still feeling in a slump and very much looking forward to a fresh start tomorrow.

Recap of meals today:

8:30am

-hot lemon water with cayenne

-juice (chard, parsley, 2 carrots)

10am

-2 eggs, 1 slice bacon, half bowl of chia with grain-free granola and an apple

1pm

-leftovers from dinner: 1 sausage, some sweet potato fries, plus kale and seeds cooked in coconut oil and sesame oil, 1/2 an avocado

4pm

-snack: 1 slice ham, 4 olives, spoonful of chia with berries and sprinkle of granola

6:45pm

-snack: 1 slice ham, 1/2 an avocado

8:15pm

-dinner: 1 sweet potato, cooked onions and peppers, 2 chicken drumsticks

-after dinner: 2 spoonfuls chia with sprinkle of granola

 

The Whole30 Begins (Day 3)

Today has been hard. And it’s only 1pm.

The Whole30 website says this:

It is not hard. Don’t you dare tell us this is hard. Beating cancer is hard. Birthing a baby is hard. Losing a parent is hard. Drinking your coffee black. Is. Not. Hard. You’ve done harder things than this, and you have no excuse not to complete the program as written. It’s only thirty days, and it’s for the most important health cause on earth – the only physical body you will ever have in this lifetime. 

Okay, I agree, drinking my coffee black is not hard. But drinking my tea without honey and going a whole day without chocolate. Is. Hard.

Today is Day 3. Day 3 of no sugar, no dairy, no grains, no alcohol, no legumes, no additives, no giving in to cravings and addictions. Here is what I’ve had so far:

7am

-hot lemon water with cayenne

-juice (beet scraps, parsley scraps, 1 carrot, handful of kale, lemon juice) – it was an alright juice, it could’ve benefited from an apple, but I knew I was planning to eat some apple later so I didn’t want to overdo it.

9am

-fruit salad (banana, clementine, apple) with coconut milk and crunchy grain-free granola (a mixture of nuts and unsweetened coconut, sweetened with a splash of fresh-squeezed orange juice)

10:30am

-2 eggs scrambled with 4 olives

11:30am

-small scoop of chia with remaining fruit salad and a sprinkle of granola

12:30pm

-leftovers from dinner: small piece of fish with salad and roasted beets, carrots, onion, radish

-1/2 an avocado and 1 slice of roast beef

 

That is so much food, right? I can’t believe how much I’ve eaten. I think it’s partly due from not getting a full night of sleep – that always cranks up my appetite. But it still seems extreme. I don’t know if this is because of a spike in my appetite after not eating a ton of food over the weekend or if it’s due to not bulking out my meals with grains.

Dealing with a nearly-constant appetite has been inconvenient, since I’ve spent a lot of time preparing and eating food today. But what has probably been more difficult is resisting the urge to fulfill my cravings, even with Whole30-approved foods.

One of the major reasons for me for doing a Whole30 is to cut my sugar cravings. Every day after lunch and usually again later in the afternoon, I get the urge for something sweet. This urge is usually taken care of by eating maple syrup sweetened chia, a piece of dark chocolate, or putting honey in my tea.

While these “vices” are a far cry from slurping down a giant soda or smashing my face into a sundae, they are all definite no-no’s on the Whole30.

And today, like clockwork, I started looking around the kitchen, desperately. What could I do? I was tempted to grab another spoonful of chia pudding (it’s unsweetened now, but the coconut milk, vanilla extract and natural flavor of chia still make it indulgent) or a handful of granola. The foods themselves are Whole30-approved, but the motivation – squelching a craving – is not. If I’m going to disconnect emotional and addictive reasons for eating, these are exactly the crutches I have to give up.

Today, I am drinking coffee to get through this afternoon. I’ve found in the past that coffee often cuts my desire for something sweet. Coffee is Whole30-approved, but I’d like to cut it out and have been decreasing my consumption – I hadn’t had any in a week! – but I guess there will be days like today.

My hope is that, by the end of the month, I will be able to get through the afternoon cravings without coffee, or better yet, that I will no longer have these cravings. Today, coffee will have to do.