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How do you lose weight on the whole30?


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This may seem like a really dumb question, but I've been thinking about it. I am on day 16 of my first whole30. I have followed all of the rules i.e.: no added sugar, no artificial sweeteners, no soda, no processed foods, no dairy.

I've been following the meal template. But, after years of having a screwed up metabolism, I don't know if I am ultimately over eating the amount of protein right now for the amount I will need to be ultimately to lose weight. I am resisting the urge to lower my fat intake or even make my portions much smaller right now as I do believe I am going for a metabolic correction and not instant quick weight-loss that I will immediately we going anyway. Does anyone on this form have any experience in actually losing weight using whole 30 type program in a longer run and if so can you share how you did it.

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whoops! Double post...so I'm exchanging it with a picture of my breakfast ...

Ps: I'm already a bit bummed- because I didn't follow the 'eat within one hour of waking' recommendation this morning.

This is all the more reason for me that I will need to go well beyond my whole30 to lose weight. So many habits to change.... I can't possibly accomplish it all in one month.


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I did.  Follow the Template Yellow Brick Road.   Goooo Ooooo sooooo sloooow.   Don't try to dial it down as it will not speed the process UP.   


Use the template and keep going.  Don't measure, count or weigh yourself.   The less you know the better it goes.   Really.   It removes all of the anxiety and stress.


This is where you start to listen to your body's cues which can help you throughout your lifetime. 


Changing your relationship with food will take longer than 30 days.  Metabolisms require months of consistent and gradual change to repair themselves.   Don't lower the fat/protein portions. You can have vegetables of every kind to fill the empty corners and moderate fruit at the end of a meal.


Nuts can be used as a condiment or decoration, thrown over a dishes even while baking or roasting.  Some cannot stop at a few so using them in a recipe works well for me. 


Eat 3 meals every day with the recommended 4-5 hours inbetween.


Don't snack.  Snacking does very little for a metabolism restoration.  When you arrive at your optimum setpoint  the dynamics may  require further modifications but don't dial anything down. 

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Thanks Meadowlily!

I am used to crash diets with quick effects and I know that a big part of how I will be changing is in my approach to treating and feeling about the 1 body I have. Patience is a virtue- and I need to really work at it.

My instagram: @standup8az

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Follow all the rules. That's how I've lost inches. I'm on Day 18, so I haven't weighed, but I did check my measurements, and I've already lost xxx inches from my waist. I was worried I was eating too much, but actually seeing myself get smaller reassured me that I was on the right path. Do you have any clothes that were tight before you started that you can try on?
Staying away from sugar and processed food does so much good for our bodies, and I don't think we can appreciate that until we've done it.
Day 16 is great! You're more than halfway there!

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Wow- day18!!! I didn't measure my waist at the beginning - and I kind of wish I had done, but also the freedom from the scale and weighing is good.

I had a few days where my pants felt looser- but yesterday, didn't feel it as much (I know, different pants, different fits.). All in: it's been a bit more than 2 weeks and I think I may have shifted a little weight but not a huge amount by any stretch. (I just wish I could be one of those 'I lost 12 pounds on my first whole30 and it changed my life' stories.)


Nevertheless: I am keeping on keeping on- as I noted above, this approach to eating to enhance my metabolism and correct my nighttime cravings and inability to follow a weight loss plan with any success in the past couple of years...makes solid nutritional sense.

Yes: I must.stop.snacking.

I will commit to NO MORE SNACKS.

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Vanessa,  if it's not sustainable now...it won't be sustainable when you reach your optimum setpoint.  That's where the rubber meets the road.  You'll learn to create your own plan that doesn't crowd you or make you feel that food is the bully.


Real whole foods are not the bully.  
Real foods won't hurt anyone. 


We can make peace with food and it doesn't involve any dieting for a lifetime. 

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Your body loses weight when you nourish it properly. When you have been doing mean things to your body through diets for years, it can take more than 30 days for your metabolism to become your friend, but stay the course eating nourishing meat and veggies in serving sizes consistent with the Whole30 meal template and your metabolism will become your friend. 


The idea that our bodies are completely dependent on calories in through eating and out through exercise is a misrepresentation that keeps the for-profit diet industry and workout businesses rich. The critical factor is our metabolism. If you eat Whole30-style, your metabolism speeds up and burns fat so that you will lose weight that is healthy for you to lose. And despite what popular culture and asleep at the wheel doctors are saying, healthy is a lot slimmer than most people in 2016 in the USA. 


Like MeadowLily said, don't try to hurry it up. Hurry undermines the process and keeps you unhealthy. Unhealthy people live on a weight roller coaster. Come off the roller coaster and do it the way that works for a lifetime.

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Follow all the rules. That's how I've lost inches. I'm on Day 18, so I haven't weighed, but I did check my measurements, and I've already lost xxx inches from my waist. 

Sorry, taking body measurements is as much against the Whole30 rules as stepping on the scale. Here are the rules again (where both body measurements and weighing are explicitly called out as no-no's), for your review.

I've edited your post to remove the inches you've lost. Please put the tape measure away until you are finished with your Whole30. Focus on other signs of success as your progress through.

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VanessaAZ I'm with you! Day 17 and I think I might be losing some weight but I'm really not sure. I am overweight and have about 40lbs to lose overall. I don't expect this to be a quick fix after all the years of damage, so I just keep trying to not think too much about if it's working. I've got faith that it will...it just might not be as quick as I'd like. The good thing is that with the exception of some of the restrictions, I'm finding this template and way of eating really good and easy and it feels sustainable. Maybe it'll take longer than 30 days to kick-start things. Who knows!

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Are any non-scale victories creeping in yet? Clearer skin, more energy, a feeling of calm/peace, better sleep? Focus on some of the other good things; noticeable weight loss WILL come in time. I did my first whole30 with not much weight to lose (5'5", 141#). I lost about 4# during the 30 days. But, it wasn't until several months later that I really felt lean and athletic again. I really don't know what my weight was at that time, I stopped checking. You will get to a place where you're happy and comfortable in your skin. Nourish your body, love yourself, and try to be patient.

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Thanks again to everyone!

It's now day 25 of my first Whole30 and I can see that it will take longer to reset my metabolism.

I'm still following the rules- and I think I am having some positive changes but they are subtle:

1. It is my 'time of the month' and I have gotten the usual inflammation I get on my chin (I did get a small spot on my cheek, but nothing to what I've had in previous times)- see, it is pretty subtle ....

2. My pants seem slightly looser, not a lot, just a tiny bit

3. I am less dependent on my morning coffee - I get up and don't feel sleepy and out of it! (I still have black coffee with my breakfast, I like my coffee!)

4. My husband said I'm looking a bit younger and slimmer in th waist- he said this with kindness... No goading to lose weight, he is one of those gems who says that he loves me and my body and thinks I'm terrific at any weight- and he has seen me vary by - gulp- 50 pounds or so over the years.

5. I'm noting less cravings overall- but I don't have this sorted, even at this point- I know I have more work ahead. I have not given up snacking, but it is much better and when I have snacked, it has been Whole30 compliant (protein and veg or a few olives or something.)

6. I went on a 'cashew kick' for a few days- eating them with several meals and even snacking on them. But I realized, both from the digestive upset that I had for those days and the way I could not control them, cashews are a 'food without brakes' for me. Previously, I might have moved on to other foods that don't add to my health- but I was able to quickly see what was going on since the rest of my eating is so calmed down- and I've removed cashews from my eating plan at this time.

7. I exercised both days of this weekend- tennis ! I am somewhat guilty to admit that I haven't exercised much in the past few months - except walking my dog daily, about half to nearly 1 mile depending on time and energy in the morning. I think this is both because the weather where I live is getting to be pretty perfect And more energy.

I think there are more - but can you see how subtle? I obviously need more time to fix my metabolism and my relationship with food and my body.

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I'm also starting a food log so I can get some forum feedback- when I've logged a few days - who and how can I ask for some debriefing on ways to tweak my eating to optimize my health and keep going with my metabolism reset???

You can PM any moderator that you feel comfortable with or start a thread on the Troubleshooting board with a link to your log... :)

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Hang in there, especially if you have any health problems :) My doc classed me as "metabolically deranged" & prediabetic prior to my first Whole30.


While I had great progress on my first Whole30, I learned so many great things during Reintroductions that have had long term health improvements, until you've done your Reintroductions, there's still plenty of learning ahead.


If your body is sick, unhealthy or stressed (including from medications), losing weight can be more difficult, but it doesn't make your progress any less important, feeling well and getting all the nutrition you need is necessary for weight loss.


Things that helped me the most:

  • Following the Recommendations as well as the Rules: http://whole30.com/2015/01/rules-recommendations/
  • Template meals (tweaked so I don't *want* to snack - not hungry)
  • Eating within an hour of waking
  • Not skipping meals and using template ratios if I did need a snack

This quote really makes me think of the things I tried before Whole30, none of them were really big enough (or the right kind of) changes:


Don’t be afraid to take a big step if one is indicated. You can’t cross a chasm in two small jumps

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I can't thank you all enough! Looking back as of day 27 of my first Whole30, I see that while I've made huge changes, those were just the beginning of healing a an abusive long term relationship with food, for lack of a better word. Abusive does seem a tad dramatic!

Bottom line, now that I've cleared out all of the garbage I was eating, I'm seeing my eating more clearly.

Not much appetite right now but I am making sure to eat my templated breakfast and lunch in full. If I'm not very hungry at dinner,

That's the time I might stay on the smaller side of portions of things continue to play out this way.

There's so much more development to do to help myself get better from my former eating habits.

While my blood work was fine at my annual visit in the summer, I don't want to tempt the fates.

I have significant weight to lose and that will just take time.

I get it.

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​I had a big problem with cashews also!  I found them to be sweet after not eating any sugar for a long time and then the salt was addictive! I literally would dig at the bottom of the can for the salt to eat with the cashews.  I have banned cashews bc I cannot stop eating them! :(

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Praxis - I ironically hate going to the doctor- even though I work in a major hospital system and am a provider!

I could believe that my numbers might show improvements, but since I wasn't having any problems, I'll just wait until my next annual to enjoy any changes.

I intend to stick with this improved eating - so there's no rush, and as I go along this health journey, I think I'll be adding more exercise and that will move things in a further better direction.

My husband has been very supportive and we talked about reintroduction phase and decided that I will try milk/ cream in my coffee (no sweetener of any kind) once I am done with my 1st Whole30. That will be my one initial experimental reintroduction for at least a period of about 2 weeks, I'm thinking.

I don't intend to ever return to artificial sweeteners or diet soda- they are gone.

I'm really not fully decided but I don't miss anything so terribly that I need to go have some the second I finish my Whole30 commitment.


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VanessaAZ, Isn't that amazing! To not miss anything so terribly?  I NEVER thought that would be me, either, and here I am. Its practically magical. 


Hows the milk reintro going?  I've had a couple "unintentional" reintros and DID NOT feel good, so I'm going to hold off for a while and just keep eating to template....

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  • 2 weeks later...


This is my 18 day and I Love it so far... Today I when to a new doctor since I moved from where I lived, and I told the nurse who was about to do my weight that I couldn't see because I'm on whole30 program, and right away She asked me to turn around away from the scale. I was happy because I didn't see my weight. Well the program has been good as far as eating. I do have some hypertension and anxiety, hoping that that goes away. I been eating as the template says, and my sleeping has been changing from waking up to sleeping all night. Well I think my menopause its kicking in. So I'm just doing one day at a time. Thanking  God for this program.



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 So I'm just doing one day at a time. Thanking  God for this program.



Schweeet, Mela.  I have a great nutritional doc as well as others.  She reminds me to "ask" for help when needed.  Asking and thanking....two tenets of developing a positive relationship with food. Template and sleeping,  two tenets of a successful Whole 30.  


Mela, I ask for help.   The answers come.  I live, move and breathe for that unction and guidance. 

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