Whole30? What is that?
Just like its name says ” Whole30″ it’s a commitment to healthy eating for a Whole month (30 days) that will break all your unhealthy habits. If you type Whole30 on Google you’ll find their website ( go to the website here ) which will explain in details what is this all about. ” Founded by Melissa Hartwig (and Dallas Hartwig) in April 2009, the Whole30® is designed to change your life in 30 days. Think of it as a short-term nutrition reset, designed to help you put an end to unhealthy cravings and habits, restore a healthy metabolism, heal your digestive tract, and balance your immune system.” – http://www.whole30.com.
They claim that participants document the improvement or “cure” of lifestyle-related diseases and conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, asthma, allergies, sinus infections, skin conditions,infertility, migraines, depression, bipolar disorder, heartburn, GERD, arthritis, joint pain, ADD, thyroid dysfunction, chronic fatigue, Celiac disease ,diverticulitis, ulcerative colitis, etc. They say that and I quote ” more than 95% of participants lose weight and improve their body composition, without counting or restricting calories.”
What are the rules?
- NO sugar;
Real or artificial, including honey, maple syrup, agave nectar, coconut sugar, date syrup, stevia, Splenda, Equal, Nutrasweet, xylitol, etc. Also be careful and read labels because companies sneak sugar into some products.
- NO alcohol;
Not even for cooking and not even a glass of wine.
- NO grains;
Including wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, rice, millet, bulgur, sorghum, sprouted grains, and all gluten-free pseudo-cereals like quinoa, amaranth, and buckwheat.
- NO legumes;
Beans of all kinds (black, red, pinto, navy, white, kidney, lima, fava, etc.), peas, chickpeas ( hummus I’ll miss you), lentils ( lentil soup addict), and peanuts. No peanut butter, either. ( I thought ” Nooo! I love peanut butter. But then I remembered there is almond butter. Yuhuu! ). Plus all forms of soy – soy sauce, miso, tofu, tempeh, edamame, and all the ways we sneak soy into foods (like lecithin).
- NO dairy;
Oh, this one is hard. No cheese ( I love cheese, I think I am addicted). No milk ( I missed it a lot in my coffee until I discovered coconut milk. Yummy!). No ice cream with dairy. No yogurt.
- NO carrageenan, MSG, or sulfites.
What is carrageenan? According to Google ” Carrageenans or carrageenins are a family of linear sulfated polysaccharides that are extracted from red edible seaweeds. They are widely used in the food industry, for their gelling, thickening, and stabilizing properties.” Even though it’s derived from a natural source ( seaweed), it appears to be destructive to the digestive system. It provokes an immune response similar to that your body has when invaded by pathogens.
What is MSG? According to this article ” Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is a flavor enhancer commonly added to Chinese food, canned vegetables, soups and processed meats. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has classified MSG as a food ingredient that’s generally recognized as safe, but its use remains controversial. For this reason, when MSG is added to food, the FDA requires that it be listed on the label.” The reactions include symptoms such as headaches, flushing, sweating, facial pressure or tightness, numbness, tingling or burning in the face, neck and other areas, rapid, fluttering heartbeats (heart palpitations), chest pain, etc.
What are sulfites? Sulfites are preservatives and antioxidants. They’re used to keep dried fruit like apricots from turning brown and to prevent unwanted bacteria from spoiling the wine. Sulfites can cause diarrhea, low blood pressure, abdominal pain and itchy skin. However, you have to be sensitive to sulfites to see these reactions.
According to the Whole30 website ” If these ingredients appear in any form on the label of your processed food or beverage, it’s out for the Whole30.”
- No junk foods, or treats with “approved” ingredients.
” A pancake is still a pancake, even if it is made with coconut flour.” – www.whole30.com
- No stepping on the scale and No body measurements the entire month.
Ok,I got it. No everything. Now, what CAN I EAT?
Well, you can basically eat everything else.
- Organic and grass-fed beef;
- Organic chicken and pork;
- Nuts and seeds ( except peanuts);
- Oils such as olive and coconut oil;
- Homemade everything such as dressings, sauces, ketchup, mayo;
- Smoothies; ( Find recipes here ).
- Coconut and almond milk.
As you can see there are plenty of things to eat, actually there are more ” YES” than “NO’s” so prepare yourself mentally because that’s your only barrier. I came to this conclusion when I did a detox for 5 days. The only thing I ate was ” juices”. Every two hours I would drink one ( mostly vegetables). By the second day, I realized that it’s not hunger that I am feeling, it’s craving. My body was being fed but my mind was the one used to chewing and feeling the food in the mouth. By the fifth day, I felt awesome. Therefore my advice to you is to start this ( if you want to) with an open mind and no expectations. Just let your body be surprised and amazed, you just watch and see how this experiment goes with a clear mind.
You can embark on this adventure with me as I am going to start on Monday ( April 9th). I will be posting about it on my Instagram so make sure you follow me. I will also create an Instagram group for us where we can talk about it, share recipes and everything else that we will be experiencing during these 30 days. There are a lot of Instagram pages that offer Whole30 recipes. We have a lot of places to get inspiration from. Also on Whole30 website, you will find packages where they offer meal plans. They vary from 30$ to 99$. Check it out.