21DSD and Whole30: constipation, gas and sleep issues

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created January 27, 2013 at 11:31 AM

Hi everyone,

I'm nearing the end of my 21 day sugar detox and I've been doing the Whole30 since the start of January too. Feeling great, a lot more energy but not as fantastic as I'd hoped. Prior to this I'd been doing paleo for 6 months with some cheats so at 80/20. I've been constipated since I started this, and I've had issues with that in the past which resolved eventually by adding quinoa and tubers to my diet. My cystic acne also flares up when I get constipated so that's been an issue this past week too. Right now I'm determined to stick to the 21DSD and Whole30, so I'm trying to figure out what I could be eating that's causing the problem. I'm beginning to think I may have a coconut sensitivity as I've been eating A LOT more of that this month especially after I discovered coconut butter a week ago(yum!) BUT I've previously lived in countries where I would eat fresh coconut on a daily basis so that makes me think it can't be coconuts? However this week I will cut out all coconut products, except for coconut oil which I cook with.

So here's a typical daily food diary by me:

7am - Omelet (3 eggs, ham, 1/2 onion, cooked in 1 dsp coconut oil), coffee with coconut milk (approx 4 desert spoons full)

10am - carrot sticks and a few spoons of coconut butter

12:15 - Chicken stir-fry leftovers (chicken breast, broccoli, zucchini, garlic, carrot, cooked in coconut oil), 10 olives.

3:30 - 2 dsp coconut butter

8pm - Beef stir fry (onion, garlic, broccoli, cabbage, daikon)

9pm - Herbal tea

I drink at least 1.5 liters of water a day, and workout 3-4 times a week.

Sleep wise, I've been trying to get 8 hours sleep a night by going to bed early but find that I randomly wake at around 3am every night for no reason, which is odd as I usually sleep the whole night through.

Stats: Female, 25, 5'7", 140lbs

Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

3 Answers



on February 10, 2013
at 09:30 PM

Try some Magnesium Citrate before bed. 400-600 mg should do it.

Will help with sleep & constipation. Cutting out all cheats has likely cut out any Magnesium sources (grains, for example.)

This is a common problem for low carb folk.


on April 30, 2013
at 08:56 PM

I had a hard time the first 3 weeks with constipation. I tried castor oil as an emergency (but I know it's a gut irritant).

The only thing that made me to back to regular is having a caffeinated beverage in the morning. So, I went back to a regular earl grey, or other regular teas, nicely steeped. I eat lots of greens, including lots of spinach, broccoli, and kale, but sometimes you need your muscles to do the work. The greens work to bulk up and pass through your system (I think...please don't fault me if it's wrong). Caffeine can make you jittery, but also jitters your muscles and gets the system going so to speak.

So, if you are enjoying herbal teas and can take caffeine well, go ahead and have that cup in the morning every once in a while.


on January 27, 2013
at 07:59 PM

just from a quick glance at what you're eating, I'd seriously up the greens you're consuming. I would aim for a full size plate of greens such as sautéed kale, broccoli, bok choy, chard, asparagus etc at every meal. It's been super helpful for me when I eat greens at every meal. Also, are you drinking enough water?

Answer Question

Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!