First, You Need to Know About Paleo
Paelo is a type of dietary lifestyle inspired by the foods eaten during the Paleolithic era/time of the Hunters & Gatherers. . The idea is that during that time, people ate foods from the animals they hunted, and the plants and vegetation they gathered. Today, those who eat “Paleo” typically have a diet consisting of high quality, organic and grass fed meats, eggs, organic vegetables and fruits, and nuts and seeds. They don’t have dairy, grains, added sugars (they also watch their natural sugar intake), legumes, alcohol or anything processed.
People adopt this lifestyle for various reasons, including decreased inflammation, weight management, relief for ailments such as arthritis, Crohn’s disease, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, digestive issues, and thyroid problems, and an overall healthier wellbeing.
The Whole30 is a 30 day reset plan created by Melissa and Dallas Hartwig and was greatly inspired by Dr Mark Hyman’s work. It’s called a “reset” because during those 30 days, you “reset” your healthy by only eating whole, un-processed foods of high quality. Organic foods are preferred, especially with fruits and vegetables, as well as grass-fed and pasture raised meats. You follow the Paleo lifestyle guidelines, but also follow a much more strict guide where you don’t eat foods that have preservatives, or any un-natural additives.
Whole30 is a great way to learn a lot about yourself. You also learn a ton about food. Because you are eliminating many of the foods that have been known to cause all sorts of negative health issues, you are able to see how your body responds to different foods and ideally can identify foods that have been triggering those negative side affects.
In July of 2017, my husband and I started our 1st Whole30. I had been battling all sorts of digestive discomfort. My doctor previously diagnosed me with gastritis, and while she gave me an article on which foods to avoid, she also prescribed me medicine. The list of foods to avoid was long, and not a guarantee for resolution, and I certainly did not want to take medicine for too long. I did my best to eliminate the foods I “thought” were causing discomfort, but I could never identify exactly what was up. That summer, I reached a point where I found myself in bed all day with an awful stomach ache that nothing could sooth. It felt like my entire stomach was full of acid. I decided that day that I needed to really commit to figuring out why my body was doing this to me, and that I wanted to do that as naturally as possible.
Encouraged by friends and peers who had been successful with Whole30, I began reading the Whole30 book and listening to the Audible version. (I recommend finishing the book before doing Whole30). Then I cleared out any non-compliant food from our fridge and pantry. This purge was the 2nd most important step (the 1st being finishing the book) that I took in preparing to radically change the way we were eating.
Those 30 days did so much more for me than relieve my digestive pain. The healthy habits I formed, the information I learned about foods and cooking, and the mental clarity I gained constantly influence my life, even months after completing the plan (Losing 6 pounds wasn’t too bad either). All that to say, the Whole30 changed my life, in the best possible way.
March 4, 2018
February 25, 2018