Earlier this month, my husband and I committed to doing a round of Whole 30 to improve our overall health. A couple of my main motivations were to clear up my skin and to curb my RAGING sweet tooth.
We started a few days into January, and I thought I’d share a quick recap of how it’s going week by week, as well as some things we’ve learned along the way. Plus, I’ll share what we ate in hopes that it helps spark some meals to add to your weekly menu!
First, what is Whole 30? You can check out the full details here, but in a nutshell:
For 30 days, you eliminate the most common craving-inducing, blood sugar disrupting, gut-damaging, inflammatory food groups. This includes added sugar (real or artificial), alcohol, grains, legumes, dairy, processed foods, baked goods or junk foods. What do you eat? Real food: meat, seafood, and eggs; lots of vegetables; some fruit; plenty of natural fats; and herbs, spices, and seasonings. In other words, eat foods with very few ingredients, all pronounceable ingredients, or better yet, no ingredients listed at all because they’re whole and unprocessed.
The 30 day process let’s your body heal and recover from whatever effects foods may be causing. Whole 30 pushes the reset button with your health, habits, and relationship with food, and the downstream physical and psychological effects of the food choices you’ve been making.
That said, here are some of the things we ate in week 1:
-scrambled eggs with sauteed peppers and chicken apple sausage (Walmart makes a compliant version) and coffee with French Vanilla nutpods creamer
-bacon sweet potato frittata (recipe here)- SO flavorful and heats up well in the microwave for a quick breakfast, also freezes well (I saved several servings for use in another week!)
-more scrambled eggs with pepper, blackberries and pork sausage patty
-Turkey Taco Scramble (recipe here)- filling and perfect for meal prep
-tuna salad on romaine hearts // mixed tuna with salt & pepper, chopped pickle, mustard, splash of pickle juice, garlic powder and homemade mayo. SO good. Note: do NOT use Extra Virgin Olive Oil…it will taste horrible. Use a light olive oil or avocado oil.)
-ground beef taco bowls on cauli rice (recipe here)
-cobb salad with chicken, bacon, cucumber, tomato, shredded carrots, hard boiled egg and balsamic vinegar
-leftover pork tenderloin with a side salad (I ate dinner leftovers a few times this week)
-Orange chicken with cauliflower rice & veggies (from the Whole 30 Fast & Easy cookbook)
-Salmon with roasted broccoli and potatoes
-Mustard rubbed pork tenderloin with carrots & onions (from the W30 cookbook)
-Shrimp stir fry over cauliflower grits (from the W30 cookbook)
-As my body got used to things, I had a few snacks along the week (although they are discouraged on W30). My go to during the day was a handful of salted almonds or pistachios (be sure to read the labels– many nuts are covered in non-compliant oils!) I got mine from Costco.
-My go-to at night to curb my sweet tooth was hot tea (this sampler pack is AMAZING) and an apple with almond butter.
Things learned so far:
- It’s a LOT of cooking/prepping. No, really…a lot. Make sure you have the right kitchen tools and gadgets and storage containers (we use glass Pyrex for easy reheating in the microwave.) Despite the prepwork, you will make some delicious, flavorful and fueling meals that you can be proud of!
- You will have LOTS of dishes. My husband and I struck a deal where I plan the menu, grocery shop and prepare the meals…and he does the dishes each night. Nothing like coming to a clean slate in your kitchen to cook the next day. (I think I got the better end of the deal if you ask me.)
- Planning a menu and doing meal prep is key to success. Prior to Whole 30, I always did a menu for the week but never really planned for breakfast and lunch. (I just figured I’d whip together something easy for those meals and move on.) But now I plan all 3 meals for us so we stay on track, plus it helps me know thaw the night before, what to pack for lunches, prep for breakfast when my husband leaves early, etc. It does really help to do it with a spouse or significant other, too.
- Read the Whole 30 book. There’s a lot of info on the Internets on W30, but the book is where it’s at. It not only explains the science of things (skippable if it’s not your thing), but also program guidelines and tips for how you should be eating…things you don’t realize from reading an Internet article.
- Take it easy on workouts this week. Your body is going through all kinds of changes, withdrawals, etc. So take it easy and opt for extra rest when you can.
Week 1 is in the books for us, and although there were some hard parts, we made it through and are feeling really great. We already notice a change in terms of clothes fitting better too- WIN! Let’s do this week 2…