Donuts and sugar breads....I'll miss you. Neil and I will start our first Whole30 program on January 2, 2017 alongside the national schedule. I generally eat pretty healthy and never had a desire to try a reset (don't get me started on juice cleanses), but the holiday season is a constant barrage of sweets. I don't like the power that sugar has on me right now, and after hearing great experiences from friends and beyond I am excited to see what the hype is all about. I've been reading the Whole30 book and poring over inspiration for compliant recipes.
What is the Whole30?
In short, it's a 30 day nutritional reset that helps end cravings, heal your digestive tract, and balance your immune system. Commonly inflammatory food groups like sugar, dairy, and legumes are eliminated from the diet to allow the body to recover. After 30 days those foods are slowly reintroduced and I'll be my own food detective looking for hidden sensitivities. You can learn more here.
Why am I doing it?
I cringe a bit every time I hear Whole30 diet because when some hear that word it's automatically lumped in with yo-yo weight loss diets. Several people asked if I was doing this as a last effort to shed weight before the wedding. Not. At. All. I'm trying to get more glute gains, thanks! Also, can we stop imposing weight loss on brides? It’s rude and gross.
Here are my main reasons for doing a Whole30:
My sugar cravings are relentless.
I eat many compliant meals already - mostly real, nutrient dense food. However, I fell face first into sweets over the holidays. Even Costco sugar breads! They weren’t even good, but they were there. I was powerless to my sugar cravings.
My skin is freaking out.
I have sensitive, combination skin that had many flare ups in high school. It was pretty clear in college and after graduating, but I’ve had a lot more breakouts the past year or so. Planning a destination wedding might have something to do with this!
To find hidden food sensitivities.
This is a big reason for many people who choose Whole30. I know that I have a one-sided relationship with (most) dairy, but I suspect that there could be other hidden culprits behind my brain fog and breakouts.
I'm tired of being tired.
I want to have more energy. Seasonal affective disorder is real, especially in cloudy Michigan, but I often feel foggy and spacey mid-afternoon.
To learn more about real, healthy food.
I want to challenge myself in the grocery store and in the kitchen. I’ve become pretty good at label reading, but I don’t know how to make healthy mayo or experiment with homemade dressings. I would also like to stop reaching for even “healthy” packaged foods.
As much as I want to binge on all the awesomely bad food over the next week before the reset I know it’s going to make things harder during our first week. Maybe see you in March, Thai takeout…if we get along.
All photos by Lance Nelson