Whole30

What’s the point of Whole30?

whole30-keep-calmWhole30 doesn’t really use the word “diet” in its own description. It is a program. A 30-day program followed by Whole9Life. Whole30 follows some of the same principles as Paleo, in terms of eating fresh, healthy food, eliminating sugars and processed junk, and maintaining an overall healthy eating style. Whole30, however, knows that a huge problem many of us have is simply our relationship with food. We overeat, indulge in crap that our brains say taste good but our internal cells say doesn’t do it for us. In just 30 days, the Whole30 program can change how you view food and your outlook on food in general… believe me, my husband and I have completed Whole30 and we loved it and are continuing to have a super healthy relationship with food even after the 30 days ended. Whole30 makes changing the way you eat easy by asking you to just commit to 30 days and see how you feel when it’s over. That’s all the program asks for… 30 days. You can do just about anything for 30 days, and from the forums and websites out there, it seems a lot of people have taken the same path that my husband and I have… 30 days was great, and we don’t want to go back to feeling sluggish and terrible on a daily basis. So we stuck to it and can now slowly reintroduce other items if we want to.

So The Whoel30 program is more about changing how you view foods. You can’t re-create baked goods on this diet (like Paleo pop tarts or something), even if you use approved ingredients. The point of Whole30 is to change how you eat, which includes snacking habits and other unhealthy habits. For more information, check out The Whole30 Program Rules.

The food rundown:

IN: meats, seafood, fruits, vegetables, healthy fats, nuts

OUT: sugar (real or fake), dairy, processed foods, alcohol, grains, legumes (including peanuts), carageenan, MSG, sulfites

Health Benefits of Whole30:

The health benefits of The Whole30 Program are incredible. I can speak from my own, and my husband’s, personal experience on some of these. As always, not everyone will experience every benefit, and everyone should check with their personal physician prior to starting an eating program, don’t self-diagnose. Some of the health benefits you could see on Whole30 are improved blood pressure, fewer allergies (I can attest to this one myself), less heartburn (both me and my husband experienced this benefit), some skin conditions could get better, less joint pain (husband had this benefit), lower cholesterol, better mood (both my husband and I definitely still have this going on), fewer migraines, less depressed, more healthy relationship with food, less snacking, weight loss, overall healthier eating. For more of a list, check out the Discover The Whole30 article.

Whole30 Q&A:

Will I really see all those health benefits?

Maybe. I’m not a doctor and I don’t know your particular history or story. But I can tell you from experience that my husband and I no longer have heartburn, my husband’s joint pain has basically disappeared, I have fewer seasonal allergies rearing their ugly heads, we are both in better moods most of the time, we both hardly ever snack (unless doing workouts and we need the extra energy), and we both have much healthier relationships with food in general now. Those are some pretty awesome health benefits for us… not to mention we lost weight, which was just icing on the cake we couldn’t eat!

Can I do this with my kids too?

Yes! We didn’t force our kids to do it all the way, but their main meals were absolutely Whole30… I wasn’t about to become a short-order chef just to make each family member something they wanted. But our kids liked most of the meals, ate everything we put in front of them, and I think cutting out most of the processed junk they were eating really did them a lot of good!

This seems like a lot of cooking, is it?

Yes and no. Making some things ahead of time once a week, like over a weekend, can really cut down on daily preparation time. It took us about a week to figure out that we always needed to have ranch dressing, eggs, chicken meatballs and kale. Now we never run out of those items, and whipping up a quick meal is a non-issue. In all honesty, it’s the planning that takes time and needs to be done on a regular basis. From there, the cooking will be easy!

Really, no alcohol?

Yes, really. No alcohol. Not even for cooking. It’s only 30 days. You can handle it. If you want to reintroduce alcohol after your 30 days, even The Whole30 book says you can… glass of wine on Day 31 is totally ok.

Resources:

The Whole30 – feel like this is a bit of an obvious resource. Everything you need to know about the program from the people who wrote the books on it. I would recommend purchasing the book because that made it easier for me to stick to the program, but it isn’t a requirement.

Whole9Life – recipes, also brought to you from the folks who wrote The Whole30, great overall resource for continuing the program.

BuzzFeed Recipes Article – Whole30 recipes everyone will like, they all look really good!