I have completed the intro phase! It actually wasn’t as bad as I thought. The first day I had symptoms, as expected: stomach pain, nausea, and lots of bloating. One thing to know is the intro phase is very high in protein, low in fiber, and high in sugar. I am not used to consuming so much sugar (and so little fiber) but juice, gelatin, honey were my main carbohydrate/energy sources. I ended up losing ~1.5 lbs over the two days — likely water weight from significantly reducing my carbohydrate intake (carbohydrate storage in the body is coupled with water and this is what accounts for the initial weight loss when following a low carb diet). By the second day I was feeling better.
- Tips for you to consider: 1. Aim to eat at least 4 small meals daily. I tried to make it work with 3 meals daily but this lead to me feeling stuffed and bloated. 2. Make sure you’re getting enough calories so you don’t lose too much weight on the intro phase. 3. Keep an open mind about trying all foods allowed during each phase. I had never had farmer cheese and was worried I wouldn’t like it, but it turned out to be my favorite part about the intro phase.
On to Phase 1!
In addition to the intro foods, phase 1 includes peeled, cooked, seeded: butternut squash, acorn squash, spinach, ripe banana with brown spots, applesauce, pear sauce, homemade nut milks (coconut, blanched almond, pecan milk), and SCD yogurt. I purchased the items in the photo below — I planned to wait for the bananas to ripen, and blanch the almonds for my homemade almond milk — a nice addition to my weakened coffee 🙂
I purchased my phase 1 foods on the second night of my intro phase so I could prep my phase 1 meals for the following day. I also received my yogurt maker on the same day, so my kitchen was busy roasting acorn squash, making SCD legal yogurt, cooking spinach, and prepping my breakfast and lunch for the next day. If you’re hesitant to add these new foods, try them one at a time. Add a new food (like acorn squash) to lunch. Continue that same food (acorn squash) at dinner. Then try a new food the next day at breakfast (like ripe banana), and so on, until you’re eating all the foods allowed during this phase. If you experience a set back, hold off on that food for a couple days and then try to reintroduce it again.
Sample Phase 1 Menu:
- Breakfast (not pictured):
- SCD legal yogurt sweetened with honey
- grape gelatin
- cooked spinach
- roasted acorn squash
- farmer cheese
My coworkers — surprised to see me eating something other than a Starbucks Protein box, commented on how good my lunch looked. It was good. And so much more satisfying.
- Snack: pear sauce
- SCD soup version 2.0 — chicken, mashed acorn squash, homemade chicken broth, farmer cheese
- grape gelatin
- um, and some dry white wine (cause election results).
Mixing that farmer cheese into my soup makes it “creamy” and delish!
- Tips for you to consider: 1. Again, 4 small meals is key here, unless you are comfortable eating large portions. I have a sensitive stomach and I find this method works best for me. 2. Vary your animal proteins — have some fish, beef, turkey, or lean game meats. I stuck with chicken and eggs, but you don’t have to be as boring as I was. 3. Mix it up! Yeah, you can only eat like 11 things at this point, but presentation is part of eating and helps to excite your mind and taste buds. The example above of my phase 1 lunch and dinner contained the exact same foods, but one was in traditional meal format (veg, protein, carb), and other was in soup format. The different textures and consistencies of the foods kept me satisfied.
At this point, after a few days, or when you feel comfortable (listen to your body!), move on to phase 2.