What is Whole 30?
Because SO many people seem to think it’s a trend or a fad diet, I want to clarify exactly what it is. It’s really about changing your mindset towards eating. If you eat clean, whole foods for 30 days and see how it affects your body, it’s supposed to help you make an easier change. (The problem is that we are fed sugar at such an early age that it’s almost insane to try and quit it! After watching so many health food documentaries, I’ve learned that a sugar addiction is too real).
So here is a link to the program rules. Read this to decide if doing this is something that you truly want to commit to.
This link (here) is a list of PDF documents that are super helpful! You can print them or screenshot them, either way they are essential!
Why did I do it?
Everyone asks me this question! Although weight loss is a great outcome in eating this way, I chose to do the Whole 30 because I like the way it makes me feel. I completed one round of Whole30 in February 2016!
I have an unhealthy addiction to sugar, as many Americans do. After watching a ton of health documentaries, I realized that my feelings regarding sweets was not okay. I originally did the whole30 in efforts to detox from sugar. During my first round, I’m pretty sure that I went through a sugar withdrawal. This time around, I did the Whole30 to reset from the sluggish feelings that I had from pregnancy.
People tend to misunderstand the point in eating this way (I hate to call it a diet honestly). The thing is: you’re still eating. You’re eating A LOT actually… it’s just more protein and veggies than anything.
Also, I did this at 3 weeks postpartum and a lot of people were concerned about my milk supply. Well, Baby J is a chunk so it definitely did not. If anything, he probably had a “healthier” diet as well.
What did you eat?
Because I have two babies, I kept it SUPER SIMPLE. Most meals were protein, fruits, and veggies. Because I’m nursing, I still snacked occasionally. I’m including pictures below of the meals and snacks that I ate. It’s only a few pictures because I honestly didn’t remember to take them!
My breakfast options: eggs, Aidell’s chicken and apple sausage, any fruit, and occasionally a vegetable. For a drink, I either had an iced coffee or lemon water. I think a common misconception in American eating is that we HAVE to have a sweet item for breakfast. My week 3, I told myself to eliminate fruits from my breakfast. I didn’t have that much luck though because I needed fast options and fruit were the easiest thing to grab.
My lunch and dinner options: chicken, salmon or turkey (I didn’t really eat beef or pork to begin with- also don’t know how to cook it, haha). Also two veggies. I definitely tried to switch up the veggies pretty often. I even got to try cauliflower “rice” this time around! They sell it at the grocery store, FYI!
Snacks: RX bars, Epic bars, Larabars, and nuts. I also snacked on fruits and veggies A LOT. I’m still nursing so I ate all the time!
What did you drink?
What were the pros?
- Almost everything, haha.
- You feel amazing! I’m covering more of that in the Victories section of this post.
- You start to truly appreciate fruits and vegetables for what they are worth! I’m obsessed with apples now!
- You can’t eat out- which means that you’re saving money
- Grocery shopping is so much faster.
What were the cons?
- You can’t really go out to eat and stay on track. It is possible but just so much more complicated
- Buying fruits and vegetables is way more expensive than buying processed foods.
What were your final results or victories?
- Skin: FLAWLESS. I didn’t have one pimple during Whole30. With a little bit of makeup, one woman even told me that I looked glowing! Um, that’s a pretty big deal to hear when you’re 7 weeks postpartum.
- Energy: pretty darn good! For having a newborn and a toddler, I would say that my energy levels have actually been great! I can definitely attribute that to the help of my husband as well. Though, I do think that laying off of sugar really helped. I didn’t even feel sluggish. I usually need
- Body: it’s hard to tell but I actually lost 20 lbs! It’s definitely more visible in inches lost. I’m super proud of this because I wasn’t working out AT ALL. I got cleared by the doctor to work out around the last couple of days so I did go on a few walks/jogs. So that 20 lbs came from breastfeeding (I’m guessing) and eating well
- Health: literally had NO headaches or stomachaches the ENTIRE TIME. I never felt full or bloated. My bowel movements were regular and easy. I honestly just felt GOOD especially after just having a baby.
- Mind: okay so, I can totally admit that I use food as a coping mechanism. The first few weeks of having a newborn was pretty stressful! Instead of turning to food, I had to really process my thoughts. There was absolutely no stress eating. I didn’t realize how often I ate junk in times of stress. Basically eliminating sugar made me find a new (and more healthy) way to cope with my stressors.
Would you recommend it?
- ABSOLUTELY! Doing Whole30 is lowkey one of my favorite things to do! At the beginning of it, I always hate it and question myself. By the end, I’m so ready for it to be over. Once it’s finished and I see my results and recap on the month, I realize that it’s so good for me!
- Plan, plan, plan!
- The first few days are the hardest. You most likely will feel bad before you actually start to feel good.
- Snacking is key!
- It’s okay to mess up! Don’t let it completely derail you though.
Will you do it again?
- Yes and No. If you would have asked me this question on Day 30, I would have said “never again”. Here I am 12 days post whole 30 and I’ve already eaten 4 pints of ice cream. I’ve recently started to feel more sluggish and have headaches. I’ve also noticed that I’m a binge eater. So I actually decided to start another modified round! I’m going to follow the whole30 type diet for as long as I can- excluding my morning cup of coffee (which will probably have about 5 grams or more of sugar). I also won’t turn down offers to eat out! I’m just going to try and make my dining selections as clean as possible. Other than those two modifications, I hope to continue to implement whole 30 into my every day diet.
- As I type this post, I went to website to review a few details of the Whole 30. One thing that I totally forgot about is the highlight of purchasing from more humane and ethical companies. I totally love that!
So there you have it! That’s my experience. I will admit that it wasn’t 100 percent perfect. The almond milk that I chose was the closest to whole30 that I could find. I ordered a drink from Starbucks and they accidentally put sweetener in it. I took a sip and they had to remake it. There were a few hiccups but overall, I continued the meal plan. I’m excited for this journey of healthy eating and body transformation. Even though I’m not doing this for weight loss necessarily, it is an added bonus. I just want to feel good inside and out and the principles of eating Whole30 help me to do so!