This is my current read. I have been interested in learning about our bodies and the foods we eat for quite a few years now. It is astonishing to learn about all the crap out there and the things companies are allowed to do to our food. Eating healthy, good food is expensive and that is so very wrong!! Eating crap, processed, high fat, high sugar food is cheap and around every corner! So very unfortunate and sad and crap! I have read all sorts from the various Clean Eating books to Vegan books and now this. This book is the story behind "Food Should Make Us Healthy" and the author's program Whole 30. Whole 30 is"designed to be a nutritional reset to help people get their metabolisms back on track, banish their sugar demons back into the darkness, and figure out once and for all the way the food hey are eating is actually affecting them."
I have been reading about Whole 30 for awhile now on various blogs and Instagram accounts. It took me so long to go get the book because the program is intense! And I didn't want to commit to something that was going to be hard. Obviously that should have been a sign that I knew I needed something but didn't want to give up all the things in my diet that they were telling me to quit.
A little background:
Cory and I have both been trying for some time to loose weight, improve our diets and feel better overall. To banish unexplained aches & pains, headaches and for me- problem skin. I have struggled since having Anna with weight. Up & down. Low (or no) energy. Terrible sleep. Anxiety. Mild depression. Problem skin. Random rashes. Headaches. After finding a new doctor and discussing what I was experiencing she recommend a couple things to me and made me realise that these things were not in my head. That I could do something about them but I had to commit. She validated me and let me know I was not alone. She gave me a prescription for an anti depressant that treats anxiety. I was reluctant at first because I was ashamed and angry that my body wasn't working the way it should. However, trying to deal with it on my own (for 3 years!) wasn't working and I knew I needed to do something. I get a little emotional when I think about it because it changed my life and in turn it changed my family's life. It has been just over 5 months (it is not something I will have to take forever) and now I can focus my energy on everything else- starting with my diet. I am sharing all this because I realise that I am not alone. That by being brave and sharing my story I can help someone else and that I have nothing to be ashamed of.
Back to Whole 30:
Cory and I began this program a week ago and we have already seen benefits. We've also had a couple meltdowns. The program as mentioned before is Intense! The basics: NO to added sugar (including natural sugars like honey & maple syrup), alcohol, grains of any kind, legumes, dairy. YES to real, natural food like fruit, vegetables & meat.
A little more background: I incorporated poultry back into my diet about a year ago. I have not considered myself a vegetarian since. I do not eat pork but for this program am willing to try eating beef and fish although I am not sure how that will go. I still believe in and care deeply for added hormones, animal welfare, their living conditions and the method in which they are slaughtered. That will never change. When possible and available the best meat to choose is organic, hormone free, grass fed and range free. I also know that these choices are very expensive and not possible for everyone all the time, including myself.
Cory & I are very committed to completing this and having each other for support and encouragement is so important. The cravings for sugar have been pretty crazy. Seeing first hand how not having them is affecting me shows me that I am making the right decision to complete the Whole 30. I miss peanut butter but there are a couple nut butters that I have found that I actually like. My morning coffee is now made with coconut milk and that was quite an adjustment but I am now enjoying it. I believe meal plans and variety are going to be key in completing this. It has already made me experiment with recipes and make meals that we loved and would eat even if we weren't doing this.
On day two (yes that soon) I woke up without an alarm, was bright eyed and full of energy! I literally bounced out of bed and got my day started. I actually caught myself off guard. Day four was really hard- I felt a little sketchy, like my brain wasn't working quite right. Another sign that I needed to keep going. I have more energy, am sleeping better and have noticed a difference in my skin already. It is brighter... happier. The cravings are getting less and less and it may seem silly after only one week but I am actually noticing a difference in how I see some of my favourite junk food- potato chips. I was surrounded by them on the weekend and was okay. I didn't need them. This thing with the program- there are no cheats, no slips. If you do, you start over on day one! No thank you. I am really proud of Cory & myself.
Weight wise, you weigh day one and then you're encouraged not to weigh again until the end... I am curious like a cat and weighed on day 4, I was down 3lbs. That is water loss but still it is encouraging. We also took before photos (yikes), sometimes you think you're doing okay because you don't want to admit that you could be doing better. I was actually surprised that I looked the way I did (I wore bikini bottoms & a sport bra). A picture is worth a thousand words and these pictures were saying "it's time to make a change". I have noticed a difference already in bloating, swelling, and overall appearance.
Maybe Whole 30 isn't your cup of tea but I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in what you're eating, healthy choices and feeling your best.
That was a long post so if you made it here, thanks for reading. I'll keep you posted on my progress.