Why I’m doing a January Whole30 (and why you should too)
Have you heard of the Whole30 program? If you know me personally or have followed along with me on social media, than you probably have. I completed my first Whole30 in September of 2014 when I was 3 months post-partum, breastfeeding, working and sleep deprived. Nutritionally and physically, I was a mess! I was introduced to the program by a friend (and fellow dietitian) as well as my sister and figured; why not give it a chance?
So what exactly is the Whole30? It's described as a diet reset, where for 30 days you eliminate foods that are known to be inflammatory or the cause of a lot of undesirable symptoms. For 30 days you eliminate sugar (ALL sugar), alcohol, grains, soy, dairy, legumes and a few preservatives. This is not meant to be a weight loss diet. Though some people do lose weight while doing it, that is not the purpose.
My results were awesome and at the end of the 30 days I felt amazing! I have since completed 5 more rounds of the Whole30 and have become a huge advocate of the program, because in my opinion, it works! The overall response from clients, friends and family that have completed one is that it can be “life-changing”. That's a pretty powerful testimonial!
So, I am doing another Whole30 round starting January 2nd and I’d love to have you do one with me! Here are 4 reasons why you should consider it.
Address Nagging Symptoms
You have pesky, nagging symptoms that you just can’t seem to shake. You are constantly tired, have brain fog, or feel moody. You experience bloating, acne or body aches that you just can’t seem to explain or resolve. You have an autoimmune disease such as psoriasis, arthritis or Irritable Bowel Disease or any other inflammatory condition. Chronic inflammation occurs when our immune system doesn’t shut off once it’s done its job to make us feel better. Diet contributes to this inflammation; some foods are pro-inflammatory, while others can be, you guessed it, anti-inflammatory. The Whole30 is basically an elimination diet to help you determine if any foods are contributing to your symptoms. At the end of the 30 days, we’ll follow the guidelines for reintroducing the eliminated foods back in slowly.
Slay the Sugar Dragon
You indulged a little too much this holiday season – Hey, we’re human, it happens! This time of year it seems there are cookies and chocolates at every turn and for some (myself included) just having one, or eating sweets in moderation, is a real challenge. Some foods, especially sugar, trigger huge releases of endorphins, making us feel really good, but also making it next to impossible to say no to more. One of the guidelines of the Whole30 program is no sugar for the 30 days. This includes honey, pure maple syrup, stevia, alcohol, etc. No sugar. Yes it’s hard, but definitely not impossible and you will become a pro at reading labels and identifying hidden sugars in things. Let’s slay that sugar dragon together!
Get Out of Your Food Rut
One of the running jokes among the Whole30 community is that you’ll do more dishes in the 30 days than you’ve probably done all year. Do not let this deter you! Yes, it’s kind of a pain, but it’s so worth it! You’ll learn so much about cooking; trying new foods and flavors, experimenting with different techniques and expanding your culinary palate like never before. The Whole30 will push you out of your food rut, if you want it to. But don’t stress – it’s also VERY possible to do this without spending a lot of time in the kitchen. Remember, I’ve done this several times while working and taking care of babies. It takes less than 10 minutes to put a few compliant ingredients on a plate (2 hardboiled eggs, avocado slices, and some baby carrots) and you are good to go!
It'll Be Fun
The Whole30 is so much easier to do when you have the support and camaraderie of other people doing it to! Not to mention it makes the process more fun by adding a social element. Doing it as part of a group also helps to keep you more accountable, plus you will have the help of an experienced Whole30–er and Registered Dietitian to guide you along the way!
I hope I've convinced you to do this along with me! If so, here are some initial tips:
- Read the first Whole30 book It Starts with Food.
- Follow Whole30 recipes on Facebook and Instagram for inspiration.
- Follow me on Facebook and Instagram for tips and support.
Let me know if you are in or have any questions!