Melissa Hartwig

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Posts posted by Melissa Hartwig

  1. UPDATE, with respect to Coconut Secret Garlic Aminos and Coconut Secret Teriyaki Aminos: these two items (from THIS BRAND ONLY) are both COMPLIANT under the new Whole30 rules, which allow for coconut aminos (with a sub-ingredient list of coconut nectar, sea salt).

    The ingredient lists of all three products (Coconut Aminos, Garlic Sauce, and Teriyaki Sauce) are IDENTICAL, save some additional seasonings in the Garlic and Teriyaki. And I know the Teriyaki bottle says "sweetened with coconut nectar," but per my research, this is not sweetener added after the fact; only that the base for the product (as with all aminos) is a naturally sweet coconut nectar. In addition, the Whole30 rules don't (and should not) specify, "Read the whole bottle cover to cover and if the word 'sweet' is mentioned, it's out."

    FURTHERMORE, the sugar content in both bottles is IDENTICAL, keeping in mind the serving size for Coconut Aminos is a teaspoon and the serving size for Teriyaki is a tablespoon. (2 grams per teaspoon for Aminos, 6 grams per tablespoon for the Teriyaki.) 

    For that reason, both of these products are compliant with the Whole30 rules... but if you disagree with this ruling or find the Teriyaki is too "sweet" to be healthy for YOUR Whole30, by all means, leave it out. Pretty sure no one ever died from malnutrition from a lack of teriyaki. 

    In addition, there are other brands (like Naked Coconuts) making a NON-COMPLIANT Teriyaki and NON-COMPLIANT Chili-Garlic. This is really easy to spot if you glance at the label... aside from the coconut sap, they also add cane sugar, which is prominently featured in the ingredients. 

  2. Maybe. We're still working though some bugs. Moving a database the size of the Whole30 website and foum is a MASSIVE undertaking. I appreciate eveyone's patience.




  3. Last night, we moved the forum to a new, more robust server. I know some of your profile photos aren't coming up. We're going to tackle correcting that this weekend, but in the meantime if you want to re-upload them, they should definitely stick.


    Sorry for the trouble,


  4. Thanks for your responses so far.  I think people are looking for two things:


    1. Emergency food. We have a huge list of widely available jerky/meat stick brands available in the US for late nights at the office or travel days. People are looking for similar resources in the UK. (For example, I know many Naked bar varieties are Whole30 compliant, and would be a good choice for those "keep it in my purse in case of serious emergency" times.)


    2. Compliant lightly processed foods. What brands of Whole30 tomato sauce, canned tuna, bacon, etc. can you purchase?


    Thanks again for your contributions.




  5. Guys, this one opens up a can of worms that we (the Whole30 team) need to address in a big-picture way; not just realated to this particular flavored bar. I'm sure there are other products in the works from a variety of companies that straddle the line of "technically compliant but we don't like it" and we want to make sure we do the right thing here, and not set a precedence that doesn't line up with our integrity.


    For now, the verdict is out on these, and we are discussing internally, and will post a decision (and full explanation) soon. Which means if I were you, despite the technically compliant ingredients, I'd think long and hard about including them in your Whole30.



  6. While working on The Whole30 book edits for our UK publisher, I began researching E numbers that would rule a product out on the Whole30. (Boy, your labeling isn't anywhere near as easy to translate with all these codes!) I thought you might find these helpful.


    Note, I can't say for certain these are 100% of the E numbers to avoid. These are just the ones I researched with respect to specific off-plan ingredients. Feel free to post your own resources, or to request that I add to this list with other additives you discover in your own research.


    Here is a list of E numbers you'd want to avoid on the Whole30, as these codes refer to either carrageenan, sulfites, or MSG:


    E150b    Caustic sulphite caramel

    E150d    Sulphite ammonia caramel

    E220      Sulphur dioxide

    E221      Sodium sulphite

    E222      Sodium hydrogen sulphite

    E223      Sodium metabisulphite

    E224      Potassium metabisulphite

    E226      Calcium sulphite

    E227      Calcium hydrogen sulphite

    E228      Potassium hydrogen sulphite

    E407      Carrageenan

    E620      Glutamic acid

    E621      Monosodium glutamate

    E622      Monopotassium glutamate

    E623      Calcium diglutamate

    E624      Monoammonium glutamate

    E625      Magnesium diglutamate 


    Here is a list of E numbers you'd want to avoid on the Whole30, as these codes refer to added sweeteners (natural, artificial, or sugar alcohols):


    E420 Sorbitol - Sugar Alcohol

    E421 Mannitol - Sugar Alcohol

    E422 Glycerol - Sugar Alcohol

    E950 Acesulfame K - Artificial Sweetener

    E951 Aspartame - Artificial Sweetener

    E952 Cyclamate - Artificial Sweetener

    E953 Isomalt - Sugar Alcohol

    E954 Saccharin - Artificial Sweetener

    E955 Sucralose   - Artificial Sweetener

    E956 Alitame - Artificial Sweetener

    E957 Thaumatin - Natural Sweetener

    E958 Glycyrrhizin - Natural Sweetener

    E959 Neohesperidin DC - Artificial Sweetener

    E960 Stevioside - Natural Sweetener

    E961 Neotame - Artificial Sweetener

    E962 Aspartame-acesulfame Salt - Artificial Sweetener

    E965 Maltitol - Sugar Alcohol

    E966 Lactitol - Sugar Alcohol

    E967 Xylitol - Sugar Alcohol

    E968 Erythritol - Sugar Alcohol

  7. To all:


    Just a quick change of protocol related to your Whole30 logs.


    First, please note these logs are only available to members of the forum who are currently logged in. General browsers of the internet and those searching for Whole30 information on Google will NOT be able to view your log unless they register and validate their registration for the forum. This is for your privacy, so you don't have to worry about non-members browsing through your personal information. This has been our policy since the forums were created several years ago--we just wanted to highlight this for you.


    Two, these logs will no longer be moderated by the Whole30 team. They are your personal "diaries," and as such deserve the respect to remain your own form of expression, within our general guidelines. (Verbal abuse, profanity, or any sort of disrespectful conduct is never tolerated on the boards, regardless of where it is posted.) We will only comment when asked, or if we feel that significantly unhealthy or dangerous behaviors are taking place.


    Three, if you choose to post non-Whole30 meals as part of your log, or go off-plan on purpose, we gently encourage you to make this clear in your log. This will help avoid confusion on the part of those new to the program. This isn't mandatory, but we are asking you to help us keep the boards clear and easy to use for all, especially those new to the Whole30.


    Finally, for all browsing these logs, know that you have no guarantee that every meal or food posted here is, in fact, Whole30 compliant. Read these logs like you read your labels, and when in doubt, ask/search/read to determine whether something posted in a personal log does, in fact, fit the Whole30 program.


    Thank you for doing your part to keep this forum supportive, respectful, and in line with  the spirit, intention, and guidelines of our Whole30 program.



    Melissa Hartwig

    Co-founder, Whole30

  8. Kew,


    it depends on what day you're on when you accidentally ingest an off-plan food, what you accidentally ingested, and what your goal is for the program.


    If it's really early on (Day 3, for example), regardless of what you ate, it's easy to start over and call it a Whole 33. If it's mid-program, and you were accidentally slipped some added sugar (say, in a dressing), you can decide for yourself whether you really want to log 30 days perfectly (in which case you start over), or whether you want to call it a learning experience and keep going.


    If you ingest something that has the serious potential to compromise the healing process, particularly in the gut, we recommend starting over regardless of what day you are on, as those foods can break the "reset" process you are trying to accomplish. (This is why we say "no cheats," not even a bite of your friend's pizza or a lick of the cake batter.) This is especially important if you are doing the program in an effort to determine how the food you are eating is affecting your symptoms or medical condition.


    Sugar isn't typically going to break the "reset" process, but everything else (including alcohol) is suspect. Does that make sense? Ultimately, of course, it's always up to you.




  9. I have a friend who is starting the Whole30 today, I think. I'm halfway through my first. She is nursing a 7 week old. She did ask me if the "3 meals, no snacking" applies to BF moms. I assume it doesn't. I'm assuming that if she is hungry because of lactation, she should snack (W30, healthy foods, of course). But, I haven't found a definitive answer on this. Can you help?

    The "three meals a day, no snacking" does NOT apply to pregnant women or breastfeeding Moms. We need to get our calories in where and when we can, so grazing, snacking, or eating mini-meals is more than acceptible if that's what it takes to get food into your sleep-deprived, feeding-every-three-hours body.

    Sipping on a can of coconut milk or snacking on olives throughout the day is a good way to get extra calories in, too. I eat a can of olives pretty much every day. Nuts and seeds are a good calorie-dense source too. I know we say not to crack out on them, but when it comes down to needing to get extra calories in, it's A-OK to rely on these cal-dense sources. Of course, if you find yourself blowing through a jar of Sunbutter every three days, maybe it's time to pull back on that one. ;)



  10. I'll admit that during my first Whole30, I had the same experience (things moving way too fast) for about the first 6-8 weeks of my transition. I did the Whole30 for 30 full days, then stuck mostly to it, and things still took a long time to even out. The healing process and transition of gut bacterial balance can take a long time, and I don't think it was anything I was eating or not eating - I think it was just my system getting used to not eating so much oatmeal, yogurt, and whole grains. Not a very scientific explanation, but without lab testing/stool testing to see what the gut environment looks like, it's hard to say what's going on.

    Removing some potentially problematic foods for a few days (like nuts and seeds) or swapping out some veggies/fruit you are eating a lot of for different varieties may give you a clue, but it's really hard in these instances to pinpoint exactly what's what.


  11. I'm not really sure how to respond to this. First, as far as pain management goes for serious conditions, I am aware of the uses and benefits of marijuana. If this is something you've talked about with your doctor, I'd certainly support medical use. If you're taking your own pain management into your own hands, well, I can't really help you with that. Do I think 10% - 30% of marijuana users become addicted? The research shows that to be true. Do I think smoking anything (putting smoke into your lungs) makes you less healthy? I do. Do I think there are downstream effects of smoking/ingesting pot that may interfere with other healthy pursuits? Yep. Is it illegal? Still, yes (even in Washington, as far as the federal government is concerned).

    But I can't really tell you what to do in this situation, as I don't understand your chronic pain, and how ingesting this substance might help. Would we ever say marijuana is okay during the Whole30? Hell no. But you're all grown-up people with your own unique contexts and full awareness of the consequences of your actions, and you are free to engage in whatever behaviors you feel are appropriate for your situation.

    Best, Melissa

  12. This is a tricky one. While yeast does contain glutamate, so do plenty of other foods with protein, like meat. The glutamate isn't the issue - it's when these proteins are hydrolyzed at high temperature, creating a different form of glutamate (a less healthy form).

    I've read both sides, and I'm not convinced that yeast extract contains the unhealthy form of MSG - which is fundamentally, chemically different from glutamic acid. But I'm also not convinced that people who are very sensitive to MSG wouldn't have a reaction when exposed to this particular form.

    We say nutritional yeast is okay for the Whole30, and I doubt that yeast extract is going to present a problem for 99.99% of folks doing the program. But for now, as Tom said, we'll encourage you to look for foods and products without these added ingredients, or better yet - just make your own chicken broth. However, I would see no need to start over because you ate some yeast extract in your soup.



  13. I would go to Costa Rica (we've been trying to plan a trip there for ages). We'd rent a house on the beach, close enough to town that we could hit the market for fresh produce and fish. Our house would have an awesome kitchen, where we'd cook all of our own food... but we'd also have daily cleaning service, so we never had to clean up after ourselves.

    Fresh fish and seafood, mango salsa (we'd go during mango season, of course), fruit smoothies (because when you're on vacation, it's okay to go a little crazy), and tons and tons of fresh salads, because when I'm south of the border, I'm always craving greens.

    There would also be this little place in town that served pulled pork, chicken, and beef, and they could make us lettuce tacos with fresh salsa and mole sauce any time we asked. Yum.

    I'd focus a ton of fun and play, and surf, paddleboard, and do yoga. There would also be awesome mountain biking trails nearby in the hills (hey, it's MY vacation), and we'd take our bikes up there a few times, too.

    And we'd find an awesome, giant boat to take us fishing and snorkeling, and we'd eat fish we caught right off the boat, sushi-style. I forgot about that part.



  14. It's not unusual for Whole30'ers to end up navigating your vacation around the program. But what if you could do the opposite... Build your dream vacation around the Whole30? Where would you go? What would you do? And most important, what would you eat?

    Take a few minutes to share your dream vacation with us here. (And do a little research to see if this Dream Vacation could become a reality... Melissa's totally could!)

    1. Where would you go on your Whole30 Dream Vacation?

    2. What would you eat? Would you make your own food? Dine out? Have a personal chef?

    3. Pick a few of our other
    9 factors
    and include those into your dream vacation. What would you focus on: fun and play? Exercise? Stress management? Active recovery? How would you factor in other healthy initiatives into your Whole30 Dream Vacation?

    Take a few minutes to have fun with this creative exercise, and get inspired by others' ideas, too. You never know...maybe someone's dream vacation plan could turn into a helpful suggestion for your next trip!

  15. Mallory,

    So you (and everyone) knows our perspective...

    Carrageenan is a concentrated, refined seaweed extract used to thicken processed foods, and is found in everything from deli meat to yogurt to chocolate. Carrageenan is significantly inflammatory if it gets into the body, which can happen with increased gut permeability. (Carrageenen is actually used in laboratory studies to create inflammation.) Furthermore, carrageenan may be degraded to components which can cross even a healthy gut barrier, even in tiny amounts.

    This makes it potentially nasty stuff; therefore it's out for the Whole30. We caution folks not to fall into the "it's natural" trap, as there are plenty of unhealthy substances that start off as a plant!



  16. Yep - you can eat these hull and all, or crack the hull and eat just the seed after toasting. I haven't seen any reference to inflammatory issues with squash seeds.


  17. Kimberly,

    I am so sorry to hear this. I'm not a doctor, but I do know there are various protocols, like Paleo and a ketogenic diet, that have been working to help those with seizures and epilepsy for some time now. (See this post from Dr. Emily Deans:

    However, I would never recommend putting a child on a ketogenic diet without the supervision of a physician - and you'd have a hard time finding one forward-thinking enough to consider the idea. I would, however, recommend a Whole30-type diet for kids, supplying all the calories and micronutrients they need, without any of the potentially problematic compounds found in grains, dairy or legumes.

    We've had some testimonials from folks with respect to seizures or other neurological conditions and the Whole30; read Jessica's story under seizures, and the testimonial on Essential Tremor.

    On the whole, I think a Whole30 approach for this kid wouldn't hurt, and very likely would help (even without going the ketogenic route). But, again, I'm not a doctor, and we always recommend working with your physician on dietary changes, especially with medical conditions. For more anecdotal evidence of Paleo helping epilepsy, just Google the terms.



  18. We are not doctors, and we will always defer to your pediatrician's recommendations. However, if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you know how important Mom's nutrition is to the baby's health and development, and we believe the diet that's healthiest for you is also going to be the healthiest for your baby. The more nutrition Mom receives from her diet, the more she is able to pass along to the little one – and there is no diet more nutritious than one that focuses on healthy protein and fat, vegetables, and fruits.

    Michele Blackwell, an OB/GYN in Houston, TX, agrees, saying:

    I have personally experienced the benefits of the Whole30 program, and I wholeheartedly recommend the Whole30 plan to my patients to optimize a woman's health during pregnancy and lactation. The nutrient-dense foods recommended provide ample vitamins and minerals without the need for the standard prenatal supplement. Eating real food Whole9-style will also help regulate blood sugars, alleviating hypoglycemic spells common in pregnancy. In addition, the Whole30 will reduce the likelihood of gestational diabetes, excess pregnancy weight gain, and possibly macrosomia (large babies) and polyhydramnios (excess amniotic fluid). -Michele Blackwell, M.D., F.A.C.O.G, Board Certified Obstetrics and Gynecology

    We've had many pregnant women and new moms attest to the benefits of the Whole30 for both the mother's health, and the child's. Most (if not all) have reported that milk supply actually improved during their program, and their babies were less fussy, slept better through the night and experienced less digestive issues and rashes.