If you follow me on other social media you’ll know that , “Eat Good Food” is the motto of Whole30 created by Melissa Hartwig and Dallas Hartwig . An intense 30 days of clean eating, Whole30 is not a diet. The program restricts legumes, grains, and sugars. It requires saying “no” to a lot of traditionally delicious foods. But, it also says no to stepping on the scale or taking any body measurements for the full thirty days of the program. The goal of Whole30 is to push the “reset” button to clear your body of hormone-unbalancing and gut-disrupting foods to improve your overall body composition. The point isn’t to lose weight, but to impact your health and change your emotional relationship with food for the rest of your life.
Here are the general rules to stick by:
- No added sugar of any kind, real or artificial. (maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, coconut sugar, Splenda, Equal, Nutrasweet, xylitol, stevia, etc)
- No alcohol in any form, not even for cooking
- No grains. This includes (but is not limited to) wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, rice, millet, bulgur, sorghum, amaranth, buckwheat, sprouted grains and all of those gluten-free pseudo-grains like quinoa.
- No legumes.
- No beans of all kinds (black, red, pinto, navy, white, kidney, lima, fava, etc.), peas, chickpeas, lentils, and peanuts.
- No soy – soy sauce, miso, tofu, tempeh, edamame, and all the ways we sneak soy into foods (like lecithin).
- No dairy. This includes cow, goat or sheep’s milk products such as cream, cheese (hard or soft), kefir, yogurt, and sour cream.
- No carrageenan, MSG or sulfites.
- No use of “approved ingredients” to recreate baked goods, junk foods, or treats* with “approved” ingredients. So no pancakes, cookies, or clever vegan milkshake recipes found on Pinterest.
So what do you eat? Well, if you think of how much of what we eat is crammed between thick slices of bread, you can come up with many alternative sandwich creations. For example, big leaves of lettuce can “sandwich” just about anything. I personally love to stuff them with avocado, tomato, and chicken. Another clever technique is using portobello mushroom caps as a bun option. There are some fabulous ideas on Whole30’s website.
I have to admit that getting through the first week was one of the most challenging things I’ve ever done (and I’ve gone to law school). I was hungry. I craved my daily greek yogurt like nobody’s business. Couldn’t I crumble just a tiny bit of bleu cheese on my greens? This phase, however, reminded me of why I decided to take on the Whole30 challenge in the first place. Plus, my body’s reaction to the changes proved how drastically I needed to change my relationship with what I was eating. I had such a wonderful experience with my first round of “Whole30”, that I’m preparing for another round. I’ve learned so much about my personal nutrition philosophy in my first 30 days that I have a ton of inspiration to implement in this new month.
Image courtesy of whatiwore.