Have you been thinking about trying Whole30, but are on the fence about whether or not it’s going to give you the results you want?
It was around early 2017 when I first tried Whole30. Like most people starting a new program, I was a bit skeptical. That all changed 30 days later. Based on personal experience, I’m here to tell you that following the Whole30 plan has a whole host of benefits.
How does it work?
With this program, you’re going to remove all of the foods that could be potentially causing inflammation or other troubles for you. That means no added sugar, no grains, no legumes, no dairy, no processed foods, and no alcohol. Essentially you’re eliminating specific foods and reintroducing them to see what’s “messing” with you the most.
Is your interest peaked? Here are the six reasons you should try Whole30 and change your entire relationship with food…
1. It’s Only Meant to be Strictly Followed for 30 Days
If you’re like me and the thought of changing your eating habits leaves you feeling a little intimidated, how would you feel knowing you only had to follow this new plan for 30 days? Well, that’s the entire foundation for Whole30. You’re only meant to follow it for 30 days. Although the hope is that once finished you’ll be able to learn what works for you and your body to make the proper adjustments moving forward.
2. It Can Teach You What Your Body Reacts To
One of the primary benefits of the Whole30 program and the reason why I recommend it as much as possible is that you’re able to learn what your body reacts to in a negative way. If you find that you’re feeling sluggish, experiencing mental fog from inflammation, or even dealing with digestive issues, Whole30 can help set you on the path to determining what’s causing the problem so you can eliminate it from your meals.
When following the Whole30 program, you’ll eliminate a variety of foods from your meals. This includes dairy, grains, alcohol, legumes, added sugar, carrageenan, MSG, sulfites, and any kind of junk food you’re used to eating. Instead, you’ll get to enjoy vegetables, fruits, unprocessed meats, seafood, eggs, nuts and seeds, certain oils and ghee, and your morning cup of coffee.
When you eliminate some of the more common foods and ingredients that cause tummy troubles, you should see a noticeable difference once they’re out of your system. After the 30 days are up, you can add them back one by one to figure out what’s actually causing you problems. It’s one of the most effective ways to help you feel better and healthier.
3. It’s a Ramped-Up Version of the Popular Paleo Lifestyle
You might be surprised to find out that Whole30 program and a Paleo lifestyle are actually pretty similar. Whole30 is simply a bit more strict since you’re really following an elimination program to find troublesome foods. Either way, both programs require you to focus on eating clean, whole foods and avoiding anything processed, grains, dairy, alcohol, and legumes.
Although you cut out many of the same foods, there’s one key difference between Whole30 and Paleo. With Whole30, it’s a strict 30-day program that you’re using to essentially reset your body. It’s not something you’re going to 100% practice for the long-term, but more something you’ll maintain with your life moving forward. You’ll learn what the problematic foods are for you and cut them out in the future but still eat normally. It’s also a way to change your relationship with food and adjust unhealthy eating habits.
4. You’ll Sleep Much Better
Following the Whole30 program could actually improve your sleep as well—the research backs it up. According to the National Sleep Foundation, cutting out sugar (the first thing you do with Whole30) may help you sleep better. The reason for this is that too much sugar in your food will spike your blood sugar levels. This will then affect your energy throughout the day and into the night.
5. You’ll Have an Elevated Mood Since Your Blood Sugar is Stable
Since you’ll be eliminating added sugar from your meals, your blood sugar will become more stable throughout the day. And when your blood sugar is more stable, you might notice an improvement in your mood. That’s a huge plus to going on the Whole30 program, especially if you’re guilty of experiencing frequent mood swings.
Because mental health issues have been potentially linked to chronic inflammation in the body, among many other issues, it’s important to decrease the amount of inflammation we experience daily. And in many cases that inflammation is caused by an unstable blood sugar level due to our unhealthy eating habits.
When we consume too much sugar or carbohydrates in our daily routines, our bodies wind up producing too much insulin. Insulin brings glucose to your body’s cells for additional energy. However, too much insulin can actually cause an insulin resistance, which means you’ll wind up with excess glucose in your bloodstream. That’s problematic for the tissue in your body and your brain.
And ultimately, it can lead to inflammation that impacts the levels of chemicals in the brain, can damage brain cells, lead to depression and anxiety, and so much more. To stabilize your blood sugar level, eliminate the sugar and focus on eating wholesome meals that are high in protein to give your body the good stuff it needs the most.
6. It’ll Teach You to Stop Dieting & Eat the Right Way
Overall, Whole30 isn’t just about following a strict guideline and losing weight. It’s about getting in touch with your body and learning what foods are satisfying to you. That’s something you can carry with you for the rest of your life, as you make changes that are going to allow you to feel better both physically and mentally.
There’s no reason to let food hold you back anymore!
Using a meal delivery service to help get you started with Whole30? Here are some resources from Food Box HQ for recycling your meal kit containers.