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Have you ever thought about doing a Whole 30? I have started doing a Whole 30, twice, but I haven’t completed one yet. 🙁 I wrote a post about why I failed the Whole 30, it’s basically a rant about why the Whole 30 is a joke. Don’t read it for inspiration. Now I’m back and ready to try again. This time around, I am going to do better with meal planning and meal prepping, and I am going to stick it out all the way through. Are you interested in doing a March Whole 30 for yourself? Keep reading!
What is the Whole30?
If you’re wondering “what is this Whole 30 business?” The Whole30 is a 30 day program designed by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig. It is essentially a strict Paleo diet. Some people think of the Paleo diet as a giant bacon-fest, but the Paleo diet is actually much more than that. The Paleo diet should be focused on high quality food, and believe it or not, should actually be based around plants, not bacon. You can even do a modified version of the Whole30 as a vegan or vegetarian if you currently follow a strict plant-based diet. I personally plan to get most of my protein from fish and possibly high quality eggs, but we will see how it goes.
You can read the Whole 30 program rules here, or read “It Starts with Food” (The Kindle version is only $9.99!) for ever more information. The short version is that the Whole30 is a 30 day program that eliminates grains, dairy, legumes and added sugar. It focuses on quality food like fresh produce, wild caught fish, pastured eggs, and more. If you are thinking this sounds expensive, don’t worry, they have a handy guide for good food on a budget.
WHY do the March Whole 30?
Do you have any issues with aches and pains, skin problems, digestive problems? The answer for most people is yes. I believe that at least 95% of problems in our bodies are caused by food. You might disagree with me, but if that is the case, maybe you should do the Whole30 with me and we can see who is right!
After suffering from un-diagnosed Celiac disease for years, I have seen the power that eliminating foods can have for myself. I was in pain after eating every single day and had a whole bunch of nutrient deficiencies. No one ever mentioned that it might be related to food, or more specifically, gluten. Celiac disease is a big deal, but there other smaller issues that can also be related to food. My skin hates dairy, and I break out almost every time that I have any of it. Due to my issues with gluten, I also have problems with several other grains like oats, corn and quinoa. If you suspect any body issues that might be related to food, the Whole30 is a great way to eliminate and then re-introduce those foods to find the culprit.
The best part about the program is that it’s completely free. All of the information you could possibly need can be found on the website and forums. You can buy the book if you are the kind of person who does better with a guide in your hands, but it’s completely optional.
What I’m doing differently this time
It was really hard for me last time because I felt like some of the rules were overkill. The rules also change every now and then, which was frustrating to me. I am going to do a few things differently this time around. Smoothies are discouraged on the Whole30. That being said, I don’t particularly care for kale, spinach, avocado, etc. but I love them in smoothies. For me, I think the balance of getting these super healthy foods is worth bending a rule.
White potatoes are also allowed now, and there is a Whole30 approved coffee creamer that I’d like to try. The official rules say that grass fed butter is allowed now (they used to only allow ghee) but I am going to skip butter and ghee entirely. I know that I feel better without dairy, and it has a big effect on my skin. My plan is to have 0 dairy for 30 days and then add just grass fed butter/ghee and see if I react to it. I am also going to not stress if the only products that I can buy do have a tiny amount of added sugar. I understand the need to eliminate sugar, and it is ridiculous that everything has added sugar. It’s also important to work with what you can find and do the best you can.
Sorry. die-hard Whole30’ers, don’t hate me!
The best way to get started
The best way to start is to have a fridge/pantry full of compliant food. Remove all tempting foods or at least put them away. Having food that I am not “allowed” to have in the house doesn’t work for me. Maybe you have better willpower than I do, if not, get rid of it! I am not suggesting throwing food away. The two options are either eating it now or donating it. The #1 thing to remember is the Whole30 is not a permanent lifestyle change. There is a re-introductory period where you find out exactly which foods cause problems for you. It is best to get your whole household on board with doing at least a modified version of the Whole30. In our house, I plan to modify things a little for my kids, but we will all eat the same general things.
So are you in? Who wants to do a March whole 30 with me? I am going to start on March 1st, although I might eliminate a few things early to ease my way into it. “Kill all the things” is real y’all. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, check out the Whole30 Timeline, more specifically days 4 and 5. Leave me a comment or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like to join me, or if you have any questions. The Whole30 website is a wealth of information, and I have a Whole30 board on Pinterest for more inspiration.
P.S. Speaking of Pinterest, beware that many items claiming to be Whole 30 are not. Make sure to read the program rules!