today is actually day 18 of the whole30 for me, and i thought it’d be a good time to jump in with an update and some thoughts. (if you aren’t familiar with the whole30, you can read up on it HERE). let’s start with the negatives:
- it is time consuming. i already cook most of our meals from scratch, but i also only usually cook dinner and we eat leftovers or simple food for lunch and cereal or yogurt for breakfast. on the whole 30, i need to either eat something weird for breakfast (leftover dinner?) or take the time to cook myself breakfast. i’m in a season of life where mornings are hectic, everyone needing something, so cooking a big breakfast everyday doesn’t usually happen. the first few weeks i had eggs almost everyday, cooked various ways, but now eggs are making me nauseous (i never loved them much in the first place). i think i need to do some make-ahead breakfast casseroles or something to make it the rest of the way, since a piece of fruit for breakfast ends up having me snack later on in the day.
- it can be expensive. if you buy all the organic/grassfed/etc that they say to buy…which i didn’t because that isn’t in our budget. i just did the best we could. also avocados …these are normally a treat in our house because of the expense, so though i bought a lot (aldi has them for 75 cents sometimes), the girls ate most of them (which is good–their little growing bodies need them!).
- some of the rules don’t make sense to me. yes, i read the book, which is really written for people who only read facebook posts. i was actually far less of a believer in the whole30 AFTER i read the book–the writers don’t have much ethos, their science is iffy, and it screams “fad diet”. ultimately, i don’t feel that i agree with them about legumes or natural sweeteners like honey or agave, and i DO think that diary is fine for most people, in small quantities. however, to give the whole30 the WHOLE 30 days to work, i’ll abstain til the end.
- it sucks to get “on” the diet. the first few days i had headaches, cravings, and felt crappy. after that though, it’s not so bad. i’d compare the level of discomfort to first trimester morning sickness discomfort, but only a few days of it. so really anyone who’s survived pregnancy and childbirth can do this easy-peasy.
- energy. my energy y’all is through the roof right now! i went from a 2 cup of coffee a day habit to only 1, and i don’t even NEED it. and no, diana is still not sleeping through the night and i’m not going to bed extra early or sleeping late. i can truly tell a difference in my blood sugar levels–i have a steady level of energy all day and feel like i can keep up with the kids so much easier. this alone makes me want to continue on with this diet after the 30 days.
- looser clothes. the rules are you can’t weigh yourself til the end, so i’m not sure if i’ve lost weight but i at least feel better–less bloated and my jeans are a bit loose.
- cures sweet tooth. surprisingly it is much easier to resist sweets the longer you go without them. the first week was tough and every now and then i want the donut or cookie sitting on the counter, but the more i say no, the easier it is to say no. my big diet weakness is BAKING–i love to bake and eat what i bake–so giving up homemade treats and breads and biscuits has been the hardest part, but so good for me. i think once this 30 days is over i might just have bread/sweets on the rare occasion instead of basically every day.
- awareness. having to read labels carefully at the grocery store really made me consider what is in my food. though i make most things from scratch, i do buy sauces, seasonings, and marinades from the store…until i read what was in them. i’d like to learn how to make all of my sauces/dressings/dips/seasonings at home from now on, since its something i could easily do in batches on the weekend.
- good food. the longer i go without added sugar. the more i appreciate really good food–like veggies–that i didn’t care for as much before. it does change the tastebuds to avoid “frankenfoods” for a while. i’ve also not felt HUNGRY on this diet, like i have on any other diet i’ve ever tried.
overall, i’d absolutely recommend trying this diet to anyone who has an allergy they can’t pinpoint, who wants to curb their sweettooth, or who simply wants to be more aware and in control of what they are putting in their body. take it from someone who has NEVER dieted longer than 3 days in her entire life–this is DOable, and worth doing.