So have you heard of the Whole 30? It feels like a quiet movement that is slowly educating and helping people about the power of whole foods.
When I heard of the Paleo diet – honestly I completely disregarded it. I didn’t read anything on it or form any opinions on it or give it much thought. What I did hear of, however, was the Whole 30. The Whole 30 is Paleo (apparently) but a little more rigid. No alcohol, for example.
First let me tell you (you probably already know this about me) that I don’t do or recommend ‘diets’. Invariably, they seem to set people up for failure. Every choice I’ve ever made about my nutrition or what I may recommend as a trainer has been well thought out, researched and cautious. I’m pretty conservative in that regard.
So why the Whole 30? And what is the Whole 30?
The Whole 30 is a way of eating that involves clean, grass-fed meats and wild caught fish and a lot of veggies and fruits for 30 days. This is how I pretty much eat all of the time BUT…
The key to the statement above is ‘pretty much’.
I am allergic to dairy and wheat. And sometimes, I have dairy and wheat (what can I say? I love beer and a bun with my burger and pizza really is better with a CRUST.) And that’s just two of the things on the list that the Whole 30 suggests you stop eating for a month. The others: alcohol, sugar or sugar substitutes, legumes, soy, all grains (even gluten free grains). These things, I have with some regularity in my diet. And of course, potato chips.
So it got me thinking…am I running around inflamed all of the time due to what I’m eating? Inflammation caused by the food I eat? Maybe inflammation in ADDITION to the wheat and dairy that I’m occasionally eating…? And what would it be like if I took those things away? What would that feel like?
So – I did it for 30 days. That’s the challenge. Not so hard for me because this is how we generally eat most of the time (but legumes? That was tough. Alternative grains? Tough.) To make sure I understood WHY I was doing it, I bought the book “It Starts with Food”. It’s a good read with enough science to support my desire to understand – but not so much that I wanted to poke my eyes out.
Honestly, I had wine twice and a gluten-free brownie once. But it was towards the very end so I didn’t feel like I’d ‘failed.’
I’m still processing what I learned. But I now understand what my body feels like when I just put really good stuff in it for a really long time. It.Feels.Really.Good. And I didn’t lose a zillion pounds, but things moved around considerably. And I got stronger in the gym (I’d been at a bit of a plateau that I couldn’t bust through.) Also I slept like a ROCK.
Though I don’t have a full grip on how I feel about it. I can say that I recommend you give it a shot for 30 days. Give your body the gift of really good food for 30 days. It’s amazing what it feels like to be ‘at optimum’.
Everything that you need to start is free at Whole 9 Life and if you want to read the book, I recommend it. It wasn’t that radical of a departure for me, but I can see how it could be for some people. Think on it. Do some research. And remember the old adage bears out, “You are what you eat.” As crazy as it sounds, I’m going to keep going. It makes me happy. Take care of your beautiful selves.