It's a nutritional reset.
The purpose of the Whole30 is to:
- Reset your metabolism
- Put an end to unhealthy cravings and habits
- Heal your body and digestive tract
- Balance your immune system
For 30 days, you must cut from your diet all dairy, legumes, grains and sugars (hormone-unbalancing, gut-disrupting, inflammatory food groups, as the creators of Whole30 refer to them.) Their website claims that if you stick to the program for the full 30 days, it will change your life. How, you ask?
- Weight loss
- Improved body composition
- Better sleep
- High energy levels
- Improved focus and mental clarity
- Sunnier disposition
I've been on a not-so-healthy kick lately, so I wanted to reel myself back in. My short-term goal: get back into the habit of healthy eating. My long-term goal: feel good, both mentally and physically, while dropping the 15 pounds of extra weight that have crept upon me over the last 10 years of my life. I learned a long time ago that fad diets don't work. You have to make permanent, healthy lifestyle changes. Otherwise, you end up as a yo-yo diet statistic.
The older I get, the more aware I am of how my body reacts to things like food, alcohol, exercise and sleep. The choices I make concerning these things are much more important to me now, than they used to be. Though I make a conscious effort to live a fairly healthy lifestyle, I have my share of pitfalls. The good part: I know where my pitfalls are. The bad part: sometimes I dive directly into them.
What I Thought Would be the Hardest Part of the Whole30
Not consuming dairy products. I have never, I repeat, NEVER attempted to eliminate dairy from my diet. I am a lover of all things milky, especially cheese. That being said, I've wondered many times if limiting or cutting out dairy would have much of an impact on the way I feel and/or my weight. I've never been brave enough to find out, until Whole30. Surprisingly enough, I didn't really miss it. I amazed myself.
What Was Actually the Hardest Part of Doing the Whole30
NOT eating Mofongo at Benny's Seafood in Miami, FL. What is Mofongo? Apparently, one of the most delicious things you'll ever taste. Guy Fieri from Food Netwook visited Benny's and was moonstruck by the Mofongo. (If you want to know what Mofongo is, check out Guy's visit to Benny's.) Luckily the owner, Benny Ojeda, was a jewel of a man and helped me find something Whole30 friendly: Conch Salad. It was delicious! I will however, try the Mofongo on my next visit!
Tomatoes Sweet Potatoes
Asparagus Green Beans
How I Felt While Whole30ing
While there were a couple of days I was sure someone had beaten me in my sleep, for the most part, I felt fantastic!
One of the main things I noticed was NOT feeling that afternoon slump that normally haunted my day. I just felt good. GUUD!
Also, the cravings weren't nearly as severe as I expected them to be.
What I Learned While Doing Whole30
- There is added sugar in almost EVERYTHING we consume.
- Even when we think we're eating healthy, we're probably not.
- The food we eat not only has a gargantuan effect on our bodies, but also on our mood, our productivity, our sleep, our minds, etc.; basically every aspect of our lives.
My Overall Whole30 Result
- I slept better at night.
- I had energy all day long.
- I was happier.
- I became a star athlete. Just kidding. But I did have better endurance.
- I had better mental focus.
- I lost roughly 5 pounds.
- My clothes became looser. (Not sure what that coverts to in inches; I didn't measure.)
Note: My mom, dad, aunt and sister-in-law did the Whole30 with me. They lost a combined 35+ pounds and lots and lots of inches!
Overall, I am very happy with my results. I was surprised to learn that I had only lost 5 pounds, as my clothes are noticeably looser. Obviously, the number on the scales didn't reflect the inches I lost. That's fine by me. I'll take inches over pounds, any day!
I feel soooo much better and have kicked donkey on my bad eating habits! That's the most important part.
Also, I've slowly began to change my kiddos over to this way of eating. I notice a huge difference in their moods and attitudes, depending on what they've eaten:
Good food = happy kids = happy mama!
I will continue this eating lifestyle with a couple of exceptions:
- I will generally eat 5 smaller meals per day, as opposed to 3 large meals; I know from past experience, this works better for me.
- I will let myself enjoy occasional down time. i.e., wine, cheese, dessert....Mofongo!
If YOU need to hit the reset button on healthy living, TRY WHOLE30!
You will not be disappointed.
It really will change your life and the way you look at food!
It's that simple.