Whole30: Day 0

Day 1 ->

On my quest to pursue clean eating habits void of processed food, for the next 30 days, I will be completing the Whole30 program and covering it on this blog.

What is Whole30?

Certain foods can have a negative impact on our health without us realizing it. They could be affecting our energy, our focus levels, our skin, our digestive system, our ability to lose weight, or even seasonal allergies, to name a few. The Whole30 program is designed to strip out these foods and “reset” the body to heal as well as change our relationship with food.

Here’s my general summary of Whole30:

  1. For 30 days, eat real food. The official program defines real food as “moderate portions of meat, seafood, and eggs; lots of vegetables; some fruit; plenty of natural fats; and herbs, spices, and seasonings.” That’s it.
  2. For those 30 days, avoid pretty much everything else, particularly sugar, dairy, legumes, grains, alcohol, baked goods (even those made with compliant ingredients), MSG, sulfites, and anything used as a sweetener including honey, syrups, and sugar replacements such as coconut sugar or artificial sweeteners.
  3. Lastly, for those 30 days, don’t step on the scale. The program is about improving your health and lifestyle, not weight loss.

But… why?

After going to a holistic doctor last year who uses Nutrition Response Testing, I was diagnosed with allergies to gluten, grains, dairy, corn, soy, rice, and sugar. Luckily, none of these are fatal, but they greatly affect my focus and energy levels as well as my skin. By generally sticking to a Paleo diet the past couple of years (Paleo is a diet that cuts out most of the same ingredients as Whole30), I’ve managed to completely change my physical and physiological health. I’m taking it to the next level with the Whole30 program.

I started going Paleo because I suffered from all sorts of health problems when I was younger. I figured out I was overweight as a 7-year-old and started suffering self-esteem issues along with it. I started having chronic heartburn at age 10, and I had a bottle of Tums as a necessity next to my bed every night for several years. I had suffered from eczema since birth, as well as constant headaches. I gained weight over the years and reached close to 230 lbs by the time I was 15. I’ve battled with weight loss and an addiction to food for as long as I can remember, and the negative self-image issues of teenage life didn’t make it any easier. Here’s an embarrassing yet necessary picture of me as an awkward 15-year-old:

natwasfat2.jpg

Ick.

Anyway, in high school, in my parents’ search to help me find a solution to my headache problem, an allergist finally diagnosed me with a dairy allergy. Within a month of cutting out dairy, I lost at least 10 pounds, my constant rashes cleared up, the headaches became much better. I would have never continued looking into the health effects of food if I hadn’t received that diagnosis. I would probably now be living with the same negative self-esteem and bad eating habits from my childhood.

Today, the heartburn is gone. The headaches are gone. The eczema is gone. My face breakouts are gone. My cognitive function is better. My energy levels are better. I generally feel okay with how I look, as long as my hair behaves.

I guess a current photo is necessary as well:

dress

Don’t laugh at me. I was trying on a dress. (I kept it, by the way.)

So that’s kind of the story of how I ended up being a Paleo-diet nut during my time in college. I’ve lost 40 pounds since high school, and probably gained some muscle since I’ve been running every day for the past couple of months, but the weight loss journey is still slower than I’d like.

I’m doing the Whole30 out of sheer curiosity, to see if there’s anything I’m missing in my healthy eating habits. I’d also like to see if it kickstarts weight loss – but of course, that’s not the point of the program. I’m just curious.

Today is Day 1, and I’ll be updating my experience daily for the next 30 days, mostly to keep myself on track. Will I regret doing this during finals? Probably.

Day 1 ->

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2 thoughts on “Whole30: Day 0

  1. I love dietary challenges because America seems to have this weird obsession with food in general (myself included). I didn’t blog about it, but I did a Vegetarian-only diet for lent recently and it was a blast to try new foods and challenge myself. I hope your experience is much the same, and I’d love to see some recipes posted! I’m rooting for you, and also the decision to keep the dress was a good one.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You know that story of the Russian cosmonaut? So, the cosmonaut, He’s the first man ever to go into space. Right? The Russians beat the Americans. So he goes up in this big spaceship, but the only habitable part of it’s very small. So the cosmonaut’s in there, and he’s got this portal window, and he’s looking out of it, and he sees the curvature of the Earth for the first time. I mean, the first man to ever look at the planet he’s from. And he’s lost in that moment. And all of a sudden this strange ticking… Begins coming out of the dashboard. Rips out the control panel, right? Takes out his tools. Trying to find the sound, trying to stop the sound. But he can’t find it. He can’t stop it. It keeps going. Few hours into this, begins to feel like torture. A few days go by with this sound, and he knows that this small sound… will break him. He’ll lose his mind. What’s he gonna do? He’s up in space, alone, in a space closet. He’s got 25 days left to go… with this sound. So the cosmonaut decides… the only way to save his sanity… is to fall in love with this sound. So he closes his eyes… and he goes into his imagination, and then he opens them. He doesn’t hear ticking anymore. He hears music. And he spends the sailing through space in total bliss… and peace.

    Like

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