If you had asked me a year ago if I would ever drastically change my eating habits, I would have laughed. I probably would have laughed the way I do now when people ask me if I plan to start exercising.
I love food. I savor every bite of quality food. Restaurants are my happy place, especially if we are talking Indian restaurants, authentic Italian, or hole-in-the-wall heavens. If you ever find me sitting at Mediterrano Cafe during a weekday lunch buffet, you will find a glowing Rachael. Don’t even get me started on desserts and chocolate.
But when my husband came home with news of pre-diabetes and a warning to lose belly weight, I knew something had to change. Just because I was never overweight did not mean I didn’t have a problem with food…. more specifically, an addiction to sugar.
So we began Our Wheat-Free, Almost Paleo Diet. Our friends joined in with us and the results were immediately noticeable. As we progressed in the changes in our eating habits, I began researching The Whole 30 program. It looked like something that would be beneficial to our families, especially right before the holidays, so we jumped on board and are now on day 24.
I don’t like to focus on weight, but to give you an idea of the transformation, I will tell you that I have lost 25 pounds since July (13 since we started Whole 30), Jimmie has lost about 30 pounds, and even Ava has lost 10. I find myself with a substantial increase of energy that typically lasts throughout my entire day. I have noticed a difference in mental clarity… I don’t feel like I am ever walking around in a fog anymore. I also think I have fought off illnesses in a shorter time frame than typical of this time of year. Jimmie is also completely off of his medicine for diabetes. The crazy thing? I don';t miss the foods I used to eat. Occasionally I will have an emotional desire to eat ice cream or pizza, but physically I am satisfied with the foods we are eating. And the recipes are GOOD!
I never want to push a lifestyle onto anyone. If you want more information about the Whole 30, see the link above. I am frequently asked, however, about why we are doing it. More than that, I am asked…
What do you EAT??
So I want to give you our actual meal plans from our first four weeks. I have provided links where available. Anything with an * next to it refers to a recipe from the NomNom Paleo app for iPad. I highly recommend this app, whether you are a Paleo enthusiast or not. Every single one of her recipes has been fantastic. We aren’t so scheduled with our breakfasts, either, so first I will give you some ideas for healthy, Whole 30 approved breakfasts.
Bacon and eggs
Lara Bars (apple pie, cherry pie, or cashew cookie)
Coffee with Paleo creamer
Egg and veggie scramble
Sweet potato and chorizo hash
Lunch 1: Tuna salad salad, nuts and sliced peppers
Dinner 1: Garbage stir fry*
Lunch 2: Tuna salad salad, deviled eggs
Dinner 2: Mahi Mahi, sweet potato fries, salad
Lunch 3: Pastrami and pepper roll-ups, guacamole and pepper slices, fruit
Dinner 3: Bacon burger with sautéed onion, mushroom and green pepper, salad
Lunch 4: Chicken salad salad, Paleo trail mix*
Dinner 4: Beef and tomato stew*
Lunch 5: Leftover stew
Dinner 5: Cobb salad (hb eggs, grilled chicken, bacon, avocado, cucumber, tomato)
Lunch 6: Pastrami and pepper roll-up, cucumber salad, trail mix
Dinner 6: Asian meatballs*, mashed cauliflower*, salad
Lunch 7: Leftover meatballs
Dinner 7: Grilled chicken, roasted broccoli
Lunch 1: Crab BLT salad*
Dinner 1: Chocolate chili, sliced avocados
Lunch 2: Leftover chili
Dinner 2: Pork burgers on greens*, sweet potato fries, roasted zucchini
Lunch 3: Spicy tuna cakes*
Dinner 3: Grilled chicken, salad
Lunch 4: Pastrami and pepper wrap
Dinner 4: Pork roast* tacos
Lunch 5: Leftover pork, cucumber salad
Dinner 5: Broiled salmon, roasted broccoli, sautéed greens
Lunch 6: Bacon and guacamole “sandwiches*”, slices peppers, fruit
Dinner 6: Frittata muffins, sweet potato hash, bacon
Lunch 7: Leftover frittata muffins
Dinner 7: ?
Lunch 1: BLT egg salad
Dinner 1: Garbage stir-fry*
Lunch 2: Spicy tuna cakes*, sliced peppers
Dinner 2: Chicken sausage skillet meal
Lunch 3: Leftover chicken sausage skillet, trail mix
Dinner 3: Shredded chicken taco salad
Lunch 4: Pastrami and pepper wrap
Dinner 4: Spicy Tunisian shrimp*, roasted broccoli
Lunch 5: Bacon-wrapped chicken tenders, sliced avocado
Dinner 5: Chipotle chicken soup, sliced avocado
Lunch 6: Leftover soup
Dinner 6: Pork chops, roasted zucchini, roasted mushrooms
Lunch 7: Brunch, bacon and fried eggs
Dinner 7: QDoba,( meat, lettuce, guacamole)
Lunch 1: (Brunch) Chicken sausage and peppers, fried egg
Dinner 1: Crispy smashed chicken with salsa*, bacon topped Brussel sprouts*
Lunch 2: Leftover chicken, cucumber salad
Dinner 2: Big O Burgers*, cabbage steaks
Lunch 3: Cobb salad
Dinner 3: Chipotle chicken soup, salad
Lunch 4: Pastrami wraps, tomato salad
Lunch 5: Leftover Italian beef
Dinner 5: Chocolate chili, sliced avocados
Lunch 6: Leftover chili
Dinner 6: Tilapia, baked sweet potatoes, salad
Lunch 7: Prosciutto muffins
Dinner 7: ?
Whew! If you are counting, that is 28 days. We haven’t decided on our last two yet. This is just a glimpse into how we eat. We have eaten at QDoba a couple of times, but otherwise haven’t eaten out at all. For snacks, we eat nuts, fruit (I especially like dates), veggie slices, fried eggs, or avocados. We are also able to drink coffee and tea, as long as there are no added sweeteners.
What do you think? Could you ever do this? Have you ever tried The Whole 30? I would love to hear your thoughts. If you have any questions about recipes or about my experience, please contact me or ask in the comment section!
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