I did a Whole30 and this is what happened
Even though I do eat a healthy diet these days, I realized that I was feeling dull, sluggish and foggy headed. Over the last few months the scale showed a consistent trend in the upward direction and my clothes were not fitting quite as well. After so many years of paying attention to my body, I know that all of these symptoms are my body’s way of letting me know that things are out of balance. Time for a much needed reboot and my second ever Whole30!
So what is Whole30? It is a real food reset that lasts 30 days. It is surprisingly simple and structured though challenging. All of the details are available on the Whole30 website for free however I highly recommend reading It Starts With Food by Whole30 creators Melissa Hartwig and Dallas Hartwig.
During a Whole30 I say no to:
- Sugar, real or artificial. No maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, coconut sugar, date syrup, stevia, Splenda, Equal, Nutrasweet, xylitol, sugar alcohols, etc.
- Alcohol, in any form, not even for cooking.
- Grains, including but not limited to wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, rice, millet, bulgur, sorghum, sprouted grains, and all gluten-free pseudo-cereals like quinoa, amaranth, and buckwheat.
- Legumes. This includes beans of all kinds, peas, chickpeas, lentils, peanuts, and all forms of soy – soy sauce, miso, tofu, tempeh, edamame, etc.
- Dairy. This includes cow, goat, or sheep’s milk products like milk, cream, cheese, kefir, yogurt, sour cream, ice cream, or frozen yogurt.
- Carrageenan, MSG, or sulfites.
- Baked goods, junk foods, or treats with “approved” ingredients.
- Stepping on the scale or taking any body measurements
And I say yes to:
- Prioritizing my health
- Eating fresh local whole food like organic meat, eggs, vegetables and fruits
- How my food choices are impacting my body and mind
- Feeling my feelings (instead of escaping them with food and drink)
- Being aware of my hunger and satiety signals
- Having a clear bright focused head and energy that keeps going all day
- Celebrating my non-scale victories like clear sinus, deep restorative sleep, happy digestion, clear skin and eyes
- Losing a few kgs (results vary)
We first came across Whole30 a few years ago when my partners GP recommended he do it. That first Whole30 was a turning point. Since then I have worked with several clients using Whole30 and it always changes lives. After a Whole30 you know know which foods are triggers for you and as you slowly add foods back into your diet you see how your body reacts. This awareness is where your power lies.
The first 2 weeks of Whole30 can be a bit of a struggle as your body gets quite grumpy not having access to all those carbs and sugars. As challenging as it was, I am grateful for my Whole30 struggles because they tought me something. It is a chance for me to look directly at the discomfort and stare it down and be like “what the hell are you about?”. Often a glass of wine at the end of the day feels like a reward but actually, it is slowly stealing away my energy. One thing that really helped me through this Whole30 was listening to the Pema Chodron recording of Getting Unstuck. This was very helpful for me to understand the idea of sitting comfortably with discomfort and not trying to run away from it.
The second half of a Whole30 is the good bit. As your body gets accustomed to not having easy access to carbs and sugars, you start to become a “fat burner” and your energy levels go up. Many people experience more clarity and focus as well as decreased joint pain, muscle pain, weight loss etc.
For me, this round of Whole30 was the start of a whole new way of being and a form of self care. I feel so much real energy, power and focus that I would like to keep going and see what happens. The food and recipes are fantastic and there is still so much more to explore. Whole30 is a challenge but sometimes that is exactly what we need.
Here are just a few victories I have from my latest Whole30
- Feeling clear headed and fresh
- Abundance of energy that lasts all day
- Lost 1.5kgs
- Glowing skin and reduction in skin flare ups like dermatitis
- Improved digestion and no IBS symptoms
- Conscious and mindful eating and drinking
- Improved back pain from a previous injury
- No sinus issues or congestion
- Restorative deep sleep
If you are interested in doing a Whole30 let me know I would love to help you X