Fighting back against chronic pain with a simple, creative, & healthy lifestyle. Inspiring others to become warriors.

Monday, January 7, 2019

5 Tips for Chronic Pain and The Whole30

As I mentioned last week, I'm kicking off 2019 with a January Whole30.

While I consider myself a Whole30 veteran, I still find new ways to make Whole30 more accessible, especially since my last three Whole30's have been post-Adhesive Arachnoiditis.

If you have never heard of the Whole30, it is a 30-day eating program with two goals. First is health, detoxing your body by eating healthy whole foods and meals. Second, teaching you how to cook healthy, make menu plans, and realize that cooking is not hard.

So I already know all this, my problem is that I know cooking isn't hard and that eating healthy definitely makes a huge difference in my pain levels. However, due to my limited mobility, I can't stand up longer than 15 - 20 minutes to food prep! I had a food prepping nightmare back in the fall that took me 3 weeks to recover from.

I had to get smart this time around.

5 Tips for Chronic Pain and The Whole30

1. Precut Veggies

Every grocery store has them. Cut up onions, celery, carrots, butternut squash, just to name a few. Yes, they are slightly more expensive but it is worth it if you are going to stay on track. Plus, it will enhance the desire to cook your own food if you are not doing massive amounts of chopping vegetables. My local grocery store even has pre-washed and chopped cilantro!
2. Frozen Veggies

I cannot praise frozen riced cauliflower enough. It is my best friend. Along with, frozen green beans, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts. Frozen veggies are my go-to for almost everything. They're inexpensive and easy to cook with. Toss them in a bowl with olive oil, S&P, and Herbs de Provence...veggies are done!
3. Plan your Whole Month of Meals and the Grocery Lists to Match.

They really stress planning. In fact, all of the literature you read about the Whole30 emphasizes planning. Plan when you are going to do the Whole30, plan out your month of meals...in fact, plan for when you can plan. LOL!

I take mine a step further and also write out my grocery lists. This is because I want to
A. Maximize my time and not be wandering around a grocery store during a pain flare.
B. It also helps me keep track of what I bought when...exactly how old is this avocado?

With chronic pain and illness, the last thing you want is food poisoning. Our immune systems are already compromised, our guts are definitely leaky, let's not add to that.
4. Make a Pinterest Page Just for the Whole30 (or put post-its in your cookbooks with dates)

This year I took my planning to the next step and made an entire Pinterest page. All the recipes for my January Whole30 are there, maybe not in the exact order, but easy to access and get to when I'm ready to cook.

Not a Pinterest fan or maybe you have a snazzy Whole30 or Paleo cookbook you are going to use. Then grab some post its and write the days and dates down that you are cooking that meal and mark them in your book. I do this on a weekly basis after my meal planning.
5. WalMart has Whole30 Approved Frozen Meals Y'all!
Ok, so Melissa Hartwig has been super awesome in 2018 about making Whole30 accessible to more people and through a partnership with WalMart, they have created frozen dinners.

I have all 4 in my freezer as an emergency back up meal. I have not tried them yet, but let's be honest, if you are in a lot of pain and need to eat something immediately to take your medication, this is it! As soon as I try one, which will probably be next week, I'll get a review up.
For any and all things Whole30, check out the Whole 30 website and their many books!

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