Friday, April 10, 2015

What do I have to do to get an olive around here?? One week down on the Whole30 and I'm craving salt.

Today marks the one-week anniversary of my Whole30 spring-cleaning plan and I'm still going strong. I started the program last Friday and never dreamed I'd have kicked my wine habit in a week. (This coming from someone whose Wodify profile picture is a margarita.) The raging headache over my left eye is gone, the sugar cravings are done and my sinuses are clearer than they've been in ages. But on Tuesday, I needed salt.

I've never been much of a sugar junkie; I specialize in fat and salt--gooey, ripe brie and cheesy nachos. So I think because I wasn't overloading on cereal, pasta or cookies before the plan, my sugar withdrawal (er, wine withdrawal) lasted only about 5 or 6 days. But then I woke up craving salt. I looked to my stash of jalapeño- and anchovy-stuffed olives and gherkins I keep for such emergencies. Foiled again.

Every single olive  in my fridge had something in it I couldn't have on the Whole30, namely some sort of sulfite or glutamate. At least the Maille company had the cojones to announce it. Their label reads in all caps "WARNING: ALLERGEN IN PRODUCT." Maybe the French are more picky about these details.

So, then, of course, because I had to have them, I drove to the grocery store and started reading every label in the olive section. I wasn't sure any were compliant, so in desperation, I ended up with a can of green beans. Eureka. Canned green beans never tasted so delicious.

Meanwhile, I sent my husband out to continue the search and he scored. Big time. Jalapeño olives with  just salt. More subtle tasting than my old brand, and every bit as good.

This was also like the week before Christmas. Packages were delivered almost daily, treasure troves of foods that I no longer had the energy to scour the aisles for--pastured sugar-free bacon and grass-fed compliant teriyaki steak. A box from Tessamae's came from the same day with that wonder product, sugar-free ketchup.

This may sound like a lot of trouble to stay "compliant." And it is. But I'm fueled by dreams, nightmares actually, in which I've consumed something non-compliant and was faced with starting over. I actually dreamed I mindlessly picked up a glass of red wine and gulped big sips. I woke up horrified that it really happened. In another one, I took a big bite of store-bought chicken salad without paying attention. Those dreams are warnings, I'm sure of it...

So now everyone in my house is reading labels out loud and reacting in wonderment to what they find. "Did you know the second ingredient in sriracha sauce is sugar?" "There is corn starch and sulfite in our green chile!! " and the clincher, "The horseradish has soybean oil, sodium metabisulfite, and high fructose corn syrup!!" It's become like "It's Academic" at mealtime.

But so far I'm feeling good. I actually had so much energy this morning that I thought maybe my thyroid prescription was too much. My daughter is following it with me (during the week) and we are getting creative with our meals. A friend commented that I sounded so much better and less congested. And I sleep like the dead. One week down, three more to go. I've heard this can really get boring and bad around the 12-day mark. If you've tried this and have any suggestions, please pass them on!

While this company makes my favorite cornichons, I have to pass during the Whole30. At least they let me know.


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