whole 30 is everywhere these days. everyone is doing a whole 30 challenge, people who started out primal, paleo, gluten-free, just plain ‘ol clean eaters… everyone from everywhere! just surf the blogs and you’ll see an endless supply of people challenging themselves. i think it is a great trend! i’m proud i was a part of the challenge.
why, though, the sudden popularity? after all, the “quest” has been around for sometime. i can’t even speculate why now. i have no idea why. i do, however, like to look at how people are applying it to their lives, and if they stick with it. also, what kind of changes are they making in their kitchen AFTER the 30 days are up?
personally, as i publicized on my blog, my journey was pretty typical. i didn’t paleofy foods. i didn’t make paleo cereals and granola for myself. i didn’t make exceptions. i didn’t plan on slip-ups. i did need some extra carbs because i am nursing, so i had some homemade tapioca flat bread every once in a while. also, i allowed myself coffee, but never used a drop of dairy.
this was all part of the challenge. i was far too dependant on sweet fruits, dairy, and other primal, but not so healthy treats. -gluten free & fruit sweetened protein muffins, grain free, date sweetened granola, a piece of fruit after every meal for a sweet ending, cheese on my burgers, eggs, salads, and just plain cheese chunks to chow on…
why? my body doesn’t need these things (treats) i began to depend on. it was time to simplify my diet. time to eat earth foods, and not in excess. no paleofying. the whole point of my whole 30 was to cleanse my body of the habits of treats. that is why grain-free granola was a no-no for me. yes, all of the ingredients were whole 30 approved, but put all of those ingredients together and it becomes a treat. the idea of depending on a “treat”, regardless of the ingredients, was training myself to depend on treats! this is why i was very strict with myself on sweets, even fruits. yeah, tapioca flat bread is pushing it, but i’ll stand by it. mommies who breastfeed need carbs.
this is my reasoning for whole 30. everyone has their own reason, everyone has something to cleanse from their plate. something that they have become dependent on, even if we don’t want to admit it. maybe we’ve never said it out loud. maybe you are just thinking, “this food doesn’t seem like real food..” .. if that sounds like something you have pondered before, consider a change. remove it. replace it with something real. something that came from the earth, and doesn’t come in a package.
whole 30 is a SELF INFLICTED CHALLENGE. if i diverted from the plan, i was cheating myself. there were no diet police who would catch me. i could sneak a piece of cheese any time i was left alone in the kitchen. i never even considered it, though. honest to goodness!
cheating comes in many forms, though. maybe all of the ingredients are real: nuts, dates, coconut.. mix it all together, and it is cereal. but the end product is an idea of the standard american diet. cereal is cereal is cereal. a muffin is a muffin is a muffin. treats are just that. and yes, vegetarians would have a difficult time on whole 30. the only thing i can think of for protein, aside from just eating meat, is nuts and seeds. but hey, have you ever read the ingredients for “meatless ground”? what the hell is all that stuff? is it even food? no offense, veggies, but i wouldn’t even feed that stuff to my chickens! be careful! read labels! consider a whole 30 challenge, and figure out a way to make it work for you!
to make things easier for you, there is a free meal planning template on the site. you have almost a full month until the next whole 30 starts, so you can start planning now and get moving on your self-challenge!
here are a few habits i have changed since my whole 30 ended:
i drink coffee slowly, with only 2/3 the caffine that i used to have.
i drink coffee with coconut milk, not dairy.
i eat carbs in moderation.
i eat a small bit of rice now, i did realize that my body does better with a little rice in my diet.
i eat cheese on cheeseburgers, not on everything that i eat.
i don’t use fruit as a reward, or any food for that matter. i stick with a “food is fuel” policy, though at special occasion will have a healthy treat. -anyone try yonanas yet?! holy toledo!!