"ACK! Whew! That got me! Eessshhh. Taste this. Does it taste like ketchup to you?" I mused. Claire whipped a golden french fry around in the smooth sauce and after taking one bite laughed. "Yep, that's ketchup!". After more than 30 days of eating on the Whole30, I had decided to down a burger and fries (+ beer!) and to my genuine surprise nothing was quite tasting the same. Starting August 1st I decided rather haphazardly to join the month's online #whole30 program, a solid month of eating nothing but super clean, awesome for you foods. After reading the book "It Starts With Food" on the way to Thailand in hopes I would find ways to combat my random ailments that should not be plaguing a 28 year old (allergies off the chain, headaches almost every day, which, with the help of acupuncture were vanishing, inflammation in my legs and feet, and the WORST, plantar fascistic, which the doctor basically says is from wearing my slippahs all the time. I mean, it IS Hawai'i for crying out loud!). In the past I had mainly eaten healthy for my health, sure, but mainly fueled by superficial desires to look good. I enjoy tasty health food and appreciate cooking, but as it's known, crappy food is addicting, and what's worse is that there are so many added things in what we THINK is good for us. So I decided there was no better time to change up my mind and eating habbits for my physical well being (and transition the way I look at food as a whole) than coming back from my trip to Thailand also known as rice for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I did a little research on recipes and stocked the kitchen with colorful vegetables, clean meats (as clean as I could afford that is!), Ms. Dash seasoning, sweet potato flower, and every coconut product under the sun. For 30 days I avoided (not one drop!) of:
-Legumes (beans, etc.)
-Grains (even quinoa!)
-Added sugar (EVERYTHING in a package has added sugar it seems!)
-Chemicals or processed food
-Dairy (eggs are okay!)
-Alcohol (the. hardest. part.)
-Certain Nuts (no peanuts!)
-Nothing made into a "healthy junkfood" like "whole 30 pancakes".
Just think of it as everything in it's wholest form.
Social gatherings and eating out could have been difficult, but with much determination and planning, I made it happen. I took flavored teas spiked with lemon juice to parties so while we were playing cards and friends were sipping Coronas, I had my pomegranate tea (and woke up the next morning so thankful to not be feeling cruddy!). A camping trip during the month almost had me on edge, but with only 4 days left of the program, I was on a roll and came prepped with fish to grill and a banana with almond butter to roast over the fire. Eating healthy wasn't the hardest part, or even the temptations (even though when Marshall cracked open a cold beer on day four I almost lost it), it was simply planning. Thankfully I still felt enjoying dinner with friends and attending social gatherings were totally do-able, as long as steak + salad were on the menu, I was good. Making the decision to eat along the whole30 guidelines has made a HUGE difference in food and the way I perceive it (and taste it! The added sugars literally accosted my tongue! And don't you know I was 'craving' red wine (all in my head) and I poured a glass and could hardly drink it? All I could smell was straight up rubbing alcohol and it gave me a MASSIVE headache, just one glass! I put it down and searched for my water. AMAZING. Who is this girl? Had it been champs the reaction most likely would have changed....). The program is not for weight loss (although without working out at all I lost 11 pounds hollerrrrrr) so you are told to weigh yourself before and after, NEVER during, because there is no calorie counting, just smart portions and good-for-you foods to reset your body, metabolism, get your system OUT of overdrive, and change your mind about food.
If you're thinking about it, I highly encourage it! I am on day 35 now and although I will eat bits here and there of foods that I love and won't be so strict, I appreciate the difference in my mind and body and now see foods a whole lot differently. See what I did there?
I ate some random meals, but that's just me. I can be happy with a giant bowl of veggies with garlic and shrimp thrown in there. Nothing fancy, just whatever is in the fridge make it a mixmatch of stuff and BOOM, I'll eat it. My meals consistent of a lot of eggs, sautéed or steamed veggies, black coffee, coconut oil all over EVERYTHING, salads, shrimp, avocado, fruits with coconut milk, flavored teas, Lara Bards and so many sweet potatoes I may just turn into one. And did I mention coconut oil?
I tried to take photos of the things I ate every day (+ avoided instagramming them ha!) so that I would remember some of the good and delish random concoctions I came up with.
I will be updating my Pinterest board frequently with the recipes I want to try and meals I have put together. I'd love to know if you too have done or what to try #whoe30, and if so, send me your fav meals! Or tell me, what tastes different for you now?