Sunday, February 9, 2014

The Whole 30

I can't stop reading about or hearing from people who have done The Whole 30 program, and my curiosity recently made me start to read more about it. Trying to sum up the Whole 30 isn't easy, so I'll give you some basic info straight from the source.

What is the Whole30®?

Certain food groups (like sugar, grains, dairy and legumes) could be having a negative impact on your health and fitness without you even realizing it. Are your energy levels inconsistent or non-existent? Do you have aches and pains that can’t be explained by over-use or injury? Are you having a hard time losing weight no matter how hard you try? Do you have some sort of condition (like skin issues, digestive ailments, seasonal allergies or fertility issues) that medication hasn’t helped? These symptoms may be directly related to the foods you eat – even the “healthy” stuff. So how do you know if (and how) these foods are affecting you?

Strip them from your diet completely. Cut out all the psychologically unhealthy, hormone-unbalancing, gut-disrupting, inflammatory food groups for a full 30 days. Let your body heal and recover from whatever effects those foods may be causing. Push the “reset” button with your metabolism, systemic inflammation, and the downstream effects of the food choices you’ve been making. Learn once and for all how the foods you’ve been eating are actually affecting your day to day life, and your long term health. The most important reason to keep reading?

This will change your life.

We cannot possibly put enough emphasis on this simple fact—the next 30 days will change your life. It will change the way you think about food, it will change your tastes, it will change your habits and your cravings. It could, quite possibly, change the emotional relationship you have with food, and with your body. It has the potential to change the way you eat for the rest of your life. We know this because we did it, and tens of thousands of people have done it since, and it changed our lives (and their lives) in a very permanent fashion. (Need convincing? Just read some of our stunning testimonials.) The Whole 30

I first thought it was a "diet" intending to cause weight loss, but that really isn't the main point. People do lose weight on the program often, but not always. Even though I try to maintain a healthy diet, I've been feeling like too much sugar and dairy have been creeping in (I have a minor Reece's addiction). I'm hoping that by being pretty strict and cutting sugar and dairy out completely, I'll be less likely to reach for them. I gave up dairy for about two months when Connor was a newborn because I thought he might have a dairy intolerance. While I don't think he really did, what I noticed was how much better I felt off dairy. I didn't feel bloated, and my skin was completely clear.

Cutting out legumes isn't something I've ever done, or wanted to do. I'm going to get rid of them during the Whole 30 and then re-evaluate when I incorporate them back in. I like the idea of starting from a "clean slate" in terms of diet so you can really see what works for you, and even more importantly, what doesn't work for you.

Matt has agreed to sticking to the plan for the 30 days, and I'm trying to make it easier for him by preparing our dinners and helping him decide what to eat or bring for lunches.

This week I'm making a new chili recipe from a paleo blog that I found, Chocolate Chili. The blog is called The Clothes Make the Girl, and the author writes a lot of tasty looking recipes. I'm also going to make a chicken curry with peppers, onions, and sweet potatoes, which is a recipe I made up and already make on a regular basis. I'm making big batches of everything so that we can either have leftovers for lunches or other dinners. For breakfast I'm going to either do hard boiled eggs and a piece of fruit or an egg scramble with veggies. Lunches will either be leftovers from the previous night's dinner or a veggie packed salad with grilled chicken on top.

I'll report back with my take on the Whole 30 periodically, and while I'm not in it to lose weight, I'll certainly update you with my results! Hopefully he won't kill me for writing this, but Matt is down 22 (or 23?) pounds and looking amazing! He's really been so on point with food, and it very motivated to give the next 30 days a shot.

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