How I made it to day 27, I'll never know. I literally thought about doing a whole 30 for MONTHS and could not bear the thought of a week without cheese, chocolate, lattes, and chips. Truly. But I was driven to do it for reasons that I could not ignore. And here I am almost done! And Imma be real with you - it's not that hard! I mean, it is but it isn't. I honestly haven't even thought much about being on it in the past two weeks. We buy the food we can eat, and we prepare that food. We don't eat out much anyway, and the times we have gone out, it's been fine. I may have occasionally bent the rules by not being a stickler for hidden sugar in a few things (particularly at a restaurant), but other than that - golden. How do I feel? Great. I mean, once I got over the nasty cold, things improved tremendously. I am not craving grains. I am not craving dairy. I don't really get hungry between meals. I haven't gotten sick of eggs & sweet potatoes. I've made some delicious meals that are twists on grainy/dairy-filled classics. It's challenged me a bit in the realm of meal planning, but as long as we have enough food on hand, things go well.
Now typically when I tell people what I'm doing, their response is "so do you just not eat?" NOOOOOO! Everyone wants an explanation of what exactly I can eat (expecting it to be a list of 2 things). So what has filled my fridge & pantry this month?
Meats & Protein
- Pastured, grass-fed beef
- Organic, free-range chicken (of all types)
- Wild caught fish (salmon, cod, tilapia, shrimp)
- Canned tuna fish (in water)
- Organic, free-range eggs (so many eggs!)
- ALL THE SWEET POTATOES
- Spaghetti squash
- Butternut squash
- Organic kale
- Organic arugula
- Red cabbage
- Organic apples (honey crisp!)
- Plantains (a newfound love!)
- Oranges & clementines
- Organic coconut (milk and oil)
- Dijon mustard (yummmmm!)
- Almonds & pecans
- Lara bars (because I can't help myself)
- Beef & chicken broth (organic, no added sugar)
- Canned tomatoes & tomato paste (crucial!!)
- Jars of roasted bell peppers
- My unbelievable, homemade almond butter! (will share soon!)
There you have it. It's a lot of foods. Not gonna lie, though...it's pricey. I've gone all in and worked on buying more organic too. Why? If the goal of this is to seriously improve my health, and I continue eating meats with loaded hormones and produce with pesticides...then I won't accomplish what I wanted. So while it's more expensive in some ways, it's worth it if I'm clearing out my system of anything harmful. There are still ways to save money and be smart about it, though. To be fair as well - I'm not buying junk like chips and salsa, I'm not buying expensive cheeses, I don't really pick up any "treats" - and once I've eliminated all of that stuff, there's more wiggle room than you'd think.
Would I recommend this? YES. SO MUCH YES. And I'd recommend it to anyone. Even if you're the vision of health, you don't have any obvious issues, and love your body. Why? It requires discipline, which I think is a virtue most of us could always strive to have more of. Think of all the times we indulge without realizing it - that mocha latte, cupcakes for a co-worker's birthday, out to dinner with friends and family, an evening sweet on a snowy day, a treat for Sunday...I am the queen at finding all sorts of "reasons" to give in. And I don't foresee myself giving up all tasty treats here on out, but just knowing that I can say no as much as I have...that's a good feeling.
The Whole 30 has also changed the way I look at food and nutrition. Well, it's actually been a long road and this cleanse is more so just confirming things I've already been thinking. But I am truly so much more aware at what goes into my body - the meats that most grocery stores sell, the 50,000 extra ingredients in so many products, the amount of sugar one could consume in a day without realizing it at all. Being aware and understanding that quality matters. And whether we have a food allergy/sensitivity or not, the government and food industries have certainly steered us wrong as to what we should be putting in our bodies.
So I plan on continuing a more paleo diet, with some added organic or raw dairy in certain forms (and maybe a bit of natural sugar here and there). I'm sure I'll have slip-ups (April does bring with it Easter and my birthday, sooooo), but I'm so grateful I had the push to do this. Just a few more days!