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What's At Stake For You? Why Are You Doing the Whole30?


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Wife and I are starting on June 2nd, after her birthday dinner and birthday cake.


I'm a pretty fit guy, I lift weights and exercise, my body composition is pretty average, could be better, losing 10 or 15 pounds would be great.


My eating habits, on the other hand, are horrible.  The foods this program says to stay away from comprise a huge portion of what I eat.  Grains, pasta, cheese, and the biggest dragons - sugar and milk,  I drink at least three large glasses of milk a day.  I'll drive to the gas station just to get candy.  Big time sweet tooth.  Time to give it up because of the following issues..


1.  Acid reflux/heartburn - I've had it so bad over the last ten years that I've lost three teeth (all of them in the back, so myshowing teeth still look fine.)  Went to the dentist two weeks ago to discover that two of my front teeth have to be extracted and I'll have to wear dentures for the rest of my life.  She told me my teeth will continue to fall out if the acid reflux isn't controlled.  I've taken medicine for it, but it only does so much


2.  Insomnia - problems for the last seven years or so.  I have to be very, very medicated to get a full night's sleep


3.  Lethargy - energy levels are soooo low.  Spend my free time in bed watching tv and surfing the internet on my laptop. No desire to do anything productive.  Just plain don't care.


4.  Generalized anxiety level and borderline bi-polar disorder.  It has gotten so bad you could probably add agoraphobia to the list.


5.  Back pain - two major surgeries in the last two years.  If I can come away from this with no back pain I will sing the praises of the Whole30 from my rooftop.


What's your story?

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nothing as glamorous as yours ;)


I have eaten quite healthily for some time but couldn't figure out what foods were giving me gas, swelling and bloating.  I was tired of being tired all the time.  I didn't have any energy for the end of the day- I would sit on the sofa like a zombie and I had a very short fuse.


I have been doing this for 15 days and I feel so much better.  I have more energy- I am not hungry but I am still waiting for the head fog to clear--I can feel it and I wish it would go...hopefully in the next two weeks!  And I have finally lost weight- I haven't weighed or measured but my clothes are looser.


I don't have any health issues- that I know of and my reasons are more weight related.  I have done almost every program out there.  The ones I had success with were "Body for Life" but I couldn't maintain the eating 6 meals a day part and Atkins- but I found that my system became really backed up on Atkins. (if you get my meaning)


I don't have any cravings so far.  I did have a strong desire for dill pickle chips....just because my daughter mentioned them and I can't get them in Europe- when I return to Canada for xmas- I will have some, but I expect they will taste so processed that one will be enough!!

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Congrats on the first 15 days, north_shore!  Good luck on the other 15.


Like I mentioned in my original post, I've been kinda doing a trial run to get a feel for what's in store.  Day three of my trial already is making a difference.  Woke up this morning at 5am wide awake and rested.  At first I was upset, 5am?  What on earth am I doing wide awake at 5am?  That never happens.  Once I got up and moving I realized how great I felt, lots of energy and very enthusiastic.


My trial has been probably 85% of the actual program.  Eating three meals a day is new for me, can't remember the last time I ate breakfast three days in a row.  I normally eat lunch and dinner and snack all day.  I think I slept so great last night because I ate dinner at 6pm and didn't eat anything after that so my digestive system wasn't in overdrive while I slept.  For years my wife and I have had the bad habit of a big glass of milk at bed time or even a bowl of cereal.


What's the other 15% you might ask?  I was a smoker for years and the last two years have been an e-cig user.  Cutting out the smoke and chemicals in my lungs is a better alternative but I actually think my nicotine use is higher than when I smoked cigarettes.   I've also had a glass of skim milk for the past three days.  I've also had a lot of fruit the last three days to feed the sugar dragon.  Major sugar addict here.  I eat candy like no one's business.  I'll actually drive down to the gas station for just candy pretty much daily, that's how bad I am.


I thought pickles were allowed on the program?  Or is it just a certain type of pickle.

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pickles are ok- just check the ingredients......or you could make your own- super easy.


Can I ask what is it about milk?  That one I can't relate.  I have never been one to have a glass of milk- only in coffee.


I have been known to skarf back the chocolate- I can relate to that, for sure.


I bet when once you complete the 30 days- once you try packaged sweets you may feel a bit sick.  You will be able to taste the difference between natural sugars found in fruits to the chemical ones.  

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Chasy - you've laid it all on the line.  You didn't mince words or pretty it up. That took some real guts to do that.  You're going to have to 'gut it out' with the candy runs to the gas station.  You're drinking milk for the milk sugars.


The best advice I can give you is from Melissa and Dallas.  You have to go Cold Turkey for the sugar hits you're getting from candy and milk - grains and pasta.


For those intense sugar cravings - eat Protein and Fat every single time you want sugar.  Edging down slowly with sugar doesn't work,  so STOP today.   Eat 3 meals aday and every time you're gritting your teeth,  reach for protein and a fat.


Within a time, not sure how many days for you,  you won't crave that sugar.  Don't fall back into the bowls of pasta, grains and candy and after 30 days, these food triggers that you've had may be the ones that you have to avoid going forward with your life.   I know you want a BIG CHANGE.  Your heart told us so.


Here's the best advice from Dallas and Melissa.


Dallas @ Whole9 says


August 4, 2010 at 8:02 pm



If you’re craving carbs  (read: SUGAR!) , eat Fat and Protein.  Giving yourself sugar is NOT the route to go. But also, adding 1/2 & 1/2 to your coffee won’t make you feel better. We’ve observed in (literally) hundreds of people that “falling off the wagon” with things like pizza and cake only lead to more “falling off”. Get back on the Good Food Train.



Melissa @ Whole9 says


August 19, 2010 at 5:34 pm


You don’t have to throw out all the sweet or savory stuff, but I do think you’re smart to realize you’re giving into the sugar demons with your sunflower seeds and raisins. If you’re craving sugar, don’t give your body sugar! Eat a high fat snack instead, with a little bit of protein, and tough it out. Break those cravings once and for all and you can go back to enjoying the occasional dried fruit and nut snack without worrying that it’s going to send you running for the nearest Krispy Kreme.




"Here’s what we typically see. People coming off a traditional “American” diet for the first time tend to rely heavily on fruit, nuts and nut butters in their first attempt at the Whole30. While they are much better food choices than you old sweet treats, obviously we’d encourage you to work your way towards better food choices, the further along you are in the program. So as you notice that you’re hitting the nut butters too hard, for example, perhaps pull back and try to add fat in the form of other good sources (coconut milk, avocado, olive oil, etc.). You’ll naturally become more aware of your food choices, the further along you go, and naturally develop a healthier, happier relationship with ALL foods.


Just know it’ll take longer than 30 days for that to happen! It’s really a life-long pursuit – breaking those old emotional ties to food and developing a new, healthier relationship. Just stick with it and continue to be honest with yourself about your food choices, cravings and habits, and the time WILL come when you can enjoy that chocolate bar and then jump right back on the Good Food Train."



This link ^^^^ will take you to the Sugar Manifesto written by Melissa and Dallas.    You can do it, Chasy.   You want a  better quality of life.   


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Chasy - don't use nuts and nut butters to 'gut it out' for sugar cravings.  Nuts are not to be used as the primary fat source.  Whatever you do, don't start eating nuts for snacks. 


Use  EV Coconut Oil,  EV Olive Oil,  Macadamia Nut Oil, Avocados, Olives and even Bacon.  Eating sugarfree bacon is a fat with a tad of protein.  Buy compliant Whole 30 jerky (sugarless).  Keep jerky and bacon in your pockets, attached to your head visor in your car. Don't find yourself without some protein and fat wherever you are.   




  • Cooking fats: animal fats* including duck fat, goat fat, lard (pig fat), and tallow (beef fat), clarified butter*, ghee* (* – must be pastured or 100% grass-fed and organic), coconut oil, extra-virgin olive oil (cook at low heat for a short time only). Unrefined red palm oil is also listed as good, but most people don’t like it as much as coconut oil
  • Eating fats and nuts: avocado oil, coconut butter, coconut meat/flakes, coconut milk (canned),  macadamia oil, macadamia butter, olives (all)
  • Occasional nuts and seeds:
  • Limit nuts and seeds: 
  • Don’t use nuts, seeds, and nut butters as your primary fat source
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  • Seafood (fish, mollusks (squid, octopus, scallops, clams, mussels, oysters), crustaceans (crab, shrimp, prawn, lobster, crayfish)): Best: wild caught + sustainably fished. Better: wild caught and/or sustainable. Good: farm-raised
  • Poultry (chicken, turkey, duck, pheasant, etc.): Best: pastured + organic. Better: organic. Good: store-bought, skin removed
  • Ruminants (beef, buffalo, lamb, elk, venison, etc.): Best: 100% grass-fed + organic. Better: grass fed and/or organic. Good: lean, fat trimmed/drained
  • Non-ruminants (pork, wild boar, rabbit, etc.): Best: pastured + organic. Better: organic. Good: lean, fat trimmed/drained
  • Organ meats: liver, tongue, kidney, heart, sweetbreads etc.
  • Bones: marrow, bone broth
  • Eggs: Best: pastured + organic. Better: organic (omega-3 enriched optional). Good: store-bought. You can eat them every day – the number of eggs you can hold in one hand
  • Processed meats (bacon, sausage, deli meat, etc.): Best: 100% grass-fed + organic. Better: organic
  • Look for terms like grass-finished or grass-fed, pastured, certified organic, hormone- and antibiotic-free, and wild-caught
  • Vary your animal protein sources
  • Meal planning: Create each meal around your protein source. Each meal should include 1-2 palm-sized servings of protein – closer to 1 serving if you’re big and/or inactive, closer to 2 servings if you’re small and/or active. As often as possible, choose high-quality meat, seafood, and eggs.
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  • Vegetables

    • Best choice: acorn squash, arugula, asparagus, beets, bell peppers, bok choy, broccoli/broccolini, brussels sprouts, buttercup squash, butternut squash, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, collard greens, delicata squash, garlic, greens (beet greens, mustard greens, turnip greens), kale, leeks, lettuce (bibb, butter, red), onions, shallots, rutabaga, spinach, summer squash, sweet potato/yams, swiss chard, tomato, turnip, watercress, zucchini

    • Good/better: anise/fennel root, artichoke, broccoli rabe, celery, cucumber, eggplant, green beans, jicama, kohlrabi, mushrooms (all), okra, parsnips, potatoes (sparingly if you want to lose weight, and make sure you don’t eat them at the expense of colorful veggies), pumpkin, radish, rhubarb, snow peas, sugar snap peas, spaghetti squash, sprouts

  • Make raw fermented vegetables, like sauerkraut and kimchi, a priority

Eat a wide variety of vegetables

Meal planning: Fill the rest of your plate (after protein) with vegetables – you can include some carb-dense vegetables but (especially if you’re overweight and insulin-resistant) should concentrate on leafy greens or other fibrous vegetables

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  • Fruit

    • Best choice: apricots, blackberries, blueberries, cherries, grapefruit, kiwi, melon, plum, raspberries, strawberries

    • Good/better: apples (all varieties), bananas, dates, exotic fruit (star fruit, quince, etc.), figs, grapes (green/red), lemon, lime, mango, nectarines, oranges, papaya, peaches, pears (all varieties), pineapple, pomegranate, tangerines, watermelon

  • Fruits are not as nutritious as vegetables. Don’t let them push vegetables off your plate just because they are more fun to eat

Eat a wide variety of fruits, especially when they’re in season

Limit dried fruit

If you’re battling sugar dragons / sugar cravings, don’t rely on fruit as a crutch when you have sugar cravings – it may be better to conscientiously avoid the fruit, nut butters, health bars, or anything else that may prop up your sugar cravings


Meal planning: Start with 1-2 servings of fruit a day – a serving is about the size of a fist. Feel free to add some fruit either with your meals or immediately after. Fruit should not take the place of vegetables. Don’t juice or make smoothies. It’s better to eat smaller servings of fruit throughout the day than a large amount in once sitting. If you find yourself reaching for more fruit in the summer, when it’s local, fresh, and delicious, that’s okay (as long as you’re not responding to sugar cravings)

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I like the idea of this thread. There are a few reasons I'm doing this:


1-For overall better health. I have asthma, allergies, and some digestive issues I'm having trouble getting to the bottom of

2-Kind of a personal challenge. I tried to do a whole 30 about 2 years ago and then I went through a really bad breakup and stopped. I always regretted not finishing so it's kind of a personal challenge for me to complete it this time. 

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Hi chas,


I have a big time sweet tooth, too. I'm on day 26 of the Whole30, and by eating the way the meal template and the moderators recommend, I haven't had sugar cravings at all. It's bizarre.


Good luck! I think you will have a good experience, even though you may get some headaches during the first week from sugar withdrawal. I found keeping a log in the Your Whole30 Log forum to be really helpful, and when I ran into trouble I posted in the Troubleshooting Your Whole30 forum and the moderators always helped me out.

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