How it happened…
I listened to an interview with creator of Whole30, Melissa Hartwig on the Jen Hatmaker podcast. I checked out a couple of Whole30 books at the library. My husband and his mom, his sister, and brother-in-law all set up to start on January 1.
It was really nice eating this plan with people I could check in with daily. We all felt benefits and we also shared comments we were getting from non-supporters. The comment we all heard was simply, “I could never do that.” Not true. Anyone can give up dairy, grain, and added sugar for only 30 days. It was fuel for us to keep going.
What We Ate…
I found one Whole30 recipe we loved. This chili was great. We made it with ground meat and nixed the peppers after the first time. But mostly I went through my cookbooks I already owned and found recipes I could make compliant easily. Usually that just meant not adding the sugar called for in a dressing or changing the oil used.
Eggs for breakfast every morning. Scrambled, fried in ghee, omelettes, frittata, and aloo tiki, but most mornings I sautéed mushrooms and onions, wilted spinach on this then set it aside and scrambled eggs in the pan. I topped our scrambled eggs with the spinach and mushrooms. So satisfying.
Sesame crusted tilapia (America’s Test Kitchen) with an Israeli tomato cucumber salad and grapes.
Pork chop cooked with olive oil and salt and pepper and roasted butternut squash with tahini and pistachios (America’s Test Kitchen) and Israeli salad.
Pati Jinich’s recipe for Chicken a la Trash. We are this four times. So good. I only had to switch from vegetable oil to olive to make this compliant.
What We Learned…
We eat without thinking a lot of the time. It was hard to not “clean the knife” after making my daughter’s peanut butter and nutella sandwich every morning for school. It was tricky to fix pasta for my kids without trying a bite to see if it was “al dente.” Once I put a piece in my mouth then spit it out when I realized what I was doing. You really treat non-compliant foods like you are allergic to them. Whole30 is strict. They say if you eat something wrong, you should start your 30 days over. That’s motivational to keep you on the straight and narrow just so you can eventually graduate.
Eating Out Was Hard.
We only ate out once at Longhorn Steakhouse (we had a gift card). We read over the online allergen menu (why is there soy in everything?!) and read online people who eat Whole30 at different resturants and what you can order. You poor folks who really do have food allergies! I’m so sorry. We both had steaks without the “love sauce” they finish them with (soy oil based something) and sweet potatoes without cinnamon sugar or butter (they call this order “sweet potatoes-dry”) but they were delicious, and salads with white balsamic vinaigrette, which may have been non-compliant, but I couldn’t figure it out in time, so we ordered it on the side and I used very little. The food was delicious, but ordering things special is rough on me. I don’t like making my server do special things, but our gal was really great about it.
What we lost…
My husband lost 24 lbs in the 40 days. (Whole30 plus 10 days of reintroduction). I lost 10.6! My progress chart is a nice straight line because I followed the plan and did not weigh from day one to 30.
How it’s changing me…
It has taken a while to figure out how to continue since doing Whole30. I was expecting to find I had some issues with gluten or something. Not so much. I am as a whole giving up dairy. It causes me to break out. Most mornings I eat eggs and drink coffee with almond milk and sugar. I basically gave up coffee for the month because I like my coffee sweet. I’m eating rice again regularly, but I eat way more fruits and vegetables doing Whole30-ish than I was. This sounds cliche, but I really didn’t have cravings while doing this. I was so satisfied nutritionally.
We just felt good eating meat, vegetables, fruit and not much else. Our energy was great. Our sleep was better. It felt like an accomplishment. I would highly recommend checking out this plan for your health.