She hadn’t been doing slow-carb with me because she loves bread too much, but after I had mentioned how it helps a lot of people to take grains out, she was on board for Whole 30. But only because she can eat fruit.
What is Whole 30?
I had initially heard about Whole 30 from a few people on Twitter who I had started following as 4HB folk. Apart from 4HB, a lot of people talk about “detoxing” in terms of nutrition. The more I listened to Robb, the more I realized that a clean diet is a “detox”.
Whole 30 is essentially the most extreme Paleo diet I’ve ever seen because it’s so clean. Once again, I hesitate to use the word “diet” because I don’t want you to think Jenny Craig or Slim-Fast. Think of it in terms of food you eat, not losing weight.
Heal your gut
Most of us are probably walking around sick without realizing it. Well, we who have started slow-carb realize it because we know how much better we feel without grains. But with the cheat days we still aren’t giving our guts time to heal.
Most of the stuff people “normally” eat are gut irritants. They don’t want to be broken down, so they fight back while you digest them. Among these foods are grains and dairy (with a precious few exceptions in dairy, it seems). So most of us are walking around with inflamed bowels without realizing it.
The problem with having an irritated gut is that you can’t absorb nutrients properly. Once you give your gut time to heal, your food becomes even better for you.
A temporary elimination
So to give yourself time to heal, for 30 days you eliminate grains, dairy, and added sugar from your diet. The evidence is compelling against them, and you simply don’t know how they negatively affect you unless you take them out.
So what can you eat? From the Whole30 site:
Eat real food – meat, fish, eggs, tons of vegetables, some fruit, and plenty of good fats. Eat foods with very few ingredients, all pronounceable ingredients, or better yet, no ingredients listed at all because they’re natural and unprocessed.
Sounds like the most healthy way to eat to me. Pro tip: grocery shopping is easier. There are only two places you need to go: produce and meat. That helps keep you away from temptation!
Why no legumes?
Those on 4HB will notice that you can’t eat legumes on Paleo. The reason is a protein called lectin. Grains have it and I think dairy has it too.
Lectins are gut irritants that we’re trying to avoid when giving our bellies some TLC. Therefore, no beans. I shall miss my lentils…
You may not even know you need it
Like I said most of us don’t even realize that we have problems. I know for myself once I took grains out of the picture my reflux went away, and I was on the verge of going to a doctor to get some meds for that. Who knows what issues you have that can be fixed by changing your diet?!
There have also been hundreds (maybe thousands?) of reports of improvements in energy, arthritis, brain function, autism, and even schizophrenia by removing grains from your diet.
The nagging question on my mind since first hearing about it was this:
“What do I have to lose?”
Worst case scenario: I don’t get to cheat for a few weeks. I can’t even imagine the best case.
You can read more about Whole 30 here.
For those of you on a paleo diet: what’s your best tip to my wife and I (and anyone interested) to help us stick to the program?