This month, I’m trying Whole30 and eliminating alcohol, grains, legumes, sugar and dairy. This diet’s main intention is to help you make better, conscious decisions about what you put into your body and why. Like a reset button.
I thought I would see what Whole30 was all about first in September 2016, but it was more like Whole7. Determined to lose some weight before a friend’s wedding, I went to the grocery store and stocked up on everything I would need for the week. I made homemade granola bars! And a deconstructed egg roll which tasted exactly like what it was called. But a work trip to NYC derailed my very little progress. I couldn’t say no to NYC pizza and an entire platter of desserts! Or rather, I didn’t.
This time around I’m doing things differently. First, I have a support system. I plan on relying on a few friends who are doing it with me to hold me accountable. Second I read the book It Starts With Food to get a better idea of the program and the science behind it. Not only do I understand what I have to do, but I also know why the program has such strict rules. Finally, I bought the Whole30 cookbook which much to my surprise is more than olive oil drenched cardboard. Cutting out dairy, legumes, sugar and alcohol just doesn’t sound like it leaves a whole lot of room for fun, but thankfully the cookbook has a wide range of appealing items.
Here’s what’s on the menu this week.
Breakfast: Diced sweet potatoes with kale and fried eggs
Lunch: Sautéed chicken breast with roasted brussell sprouts and sweet potatoes
Dinner: Herb crusted salmon with roasted broccoli (Whole30 cookbook. Pictured above)
B: Potato pancakes with fried eggs
L: Leftover salmon and broccoli
D: Crock pot buffalo chicken with a sweet potato
B: Leftover potato pancakes with fried eggs
L: Leftover buffalo chicken with a sweet potato
D: My first hurdle. I have a girls night and it’s a taco/ nacho bar with margaritas. So I made my own sweet potato chips and guac which I plan to bring so I can partake without feeling like shredded lettuce is my only option.
I planned for the first three days only so I could then gauge whether I’m buying and cooking enough or too much and what items I should add or remove. When I first tried Whole30 last year, I experienced a searing headache for four days straight. A friend recommended I incorporate potatoes as often as I can at the start while my body adjusts to the lack of carbohydrates. That’s why most if not all of the meals listed above mention potatoes.
There is never a perfect time to cut out all the things I enjoy most, but we aren’t traveling at all this month so it feels like now or never. I eat a relatively healthy diet and live a relatively healthy lifestyle, so I find it hard to believe Whole30 will “change my life” as it so dramatically claims. But I am curious to see how eating better affects my overall wellbeing and most importantly whether it alleviates some of the frequent migraines I experience. Fingers crossed the donuts aren’t to blame!