Believe it or not, I have never done a Whole 30. I’ve been a paleo advocate for over 5 years, a firm believer in the “80/20” approach, and have never completed a Whole 30.
So why did I decide now to complete one? Firstly, my instructor in my preventative nutrition class was talking about therapeutic diets and cleanses, and mentioned that if we were going to be recommending these special diets to clients, that we should be versed in how it works, and that involves experiencing it fully ourselves. No, I don’t have an autoimmune disease or leaky gut, but that doesn’t mean I can’t benefit from completing a Whole 30! I have been consuming dairy, refined sugar *gasp* and alcohol pretty regularly these days and am looking forward to eliminating these from my diet and seeing how it affects me. I also have definitely developed quite a habit of eating “dessert”. Whether its some dark chocolate after dinner, or fruit and greek yogurt before bed, I have found a reason every night to squeeze this in, regardless if I just had a filling dinner moments before. My brain is wired to expect a dose of sweetness before bed, and with any other habit, to decrease these feelings I simply have to break the habit and “rewire” my brain. I don’t think my so called sweet tooth is related to any type of emotional eating habits, but literally just a habit in general.
Whole 30 is designed to teach you to look at food differently. I’m excited to start eating real, whole foods again, (not that I don’t..) and give up my rice cakes, oats, peanut butter, protein powder, and greek yogurt that I’ve become so accustomed to eating since my bikini fitness days. I am just going on day 4 and I am already starting to feel better. I’m going to be honest, I have snacked a few times which is prohibited on Whole 30, but mind you my body was used to eating 6 times a day. Regardless if I was “hungry” or not, I was expecting food. Whole 30 helps regulate hormones so when you feel full, you stop eating, and if you’re not hungry, you don’t necessarily need to eat. Whole 30 isn’t necessarily low carb, or high carb, it’s whatever you want it to be. I have a plantain ready to fry up for breakfast, along side my roasted sweet potatoes I prepped, and some sliced strawberries on the side, whereas the next day I might have an egg scramble with spinach and mushrooms.
Here was my delicious salad this evening: spinach, cabbage, strawberries, avocado, and slivered almonds. I added chicken and the dressing was olive oil and apple cider vinegar! So delicious.
Just listen to your body. Buy local, fresh, seasonal ingredients, and kick this Whole 30’s ass so you can start your camping adventures and vineyards tours. And by you I mean myself 🙂