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I completed my Whole30 on December 26th and I feel amazing!!!   

I did not expect much of a change because I thought I had a pretty healthy diet before I started Whole30 with plenty of veggies, fruits, nuts & protein.  I also regularly walk 4 miles a day and do yoga.  However, my previous diet also included 3 cups of coffee a day with half & half & raw honey, cheese, hummus, greek yogurt, a daily glass or two of wine, dark chocolate, sourdough bread and butter.  I occasionally ate tofu, edamame, pasta, rice, oatmeal and lentils.  Basically the typical diet of a 42 year old woman who lives in California. 

The benefits of eating a Whole30 diet have surpassed my expectations and include:

- Reduced bags under my eyes

- Improved complexion

- Smoother, younger looking skin

- Better sleep

- More energy

- Eliminated my sweet, creamy coffee habit - I actually enjoy drinking my coffee black now.  Sometimes I make a "Bulletproof latte" by blending a spoonful of coconut oil & ghee with my coffee in the blender.  At work I drink hot tea instead of coffee. 

- Changed how I relax in the evening - Instead of unwinding with a glass of wine, I drink a glass of Kombucha in a wine glass or hot herbal tea.

- Improved cooking skills - I have made so many new, delicious and interesting dishes this past month from the Whole30 cookbooks.

- Faster & less expensive grocery shopping - I was already buying mostly organic poultry, grass-fed meat, wild-caught fish, pastured eggs and organic fruits & veggies.  Now I am spending less money overall because I no longer buy expensive grass-fed dairy products and wine.  I also stopped buying so many treats for my kids.  My favorite advice from "It Starts With Food" is that I am in charge of what I buy at the market, my kids have no money to buy anything. :) 

- Better relationships with my husband and two children because I have more energy & patience.  My family is not strictly following the Whole30 protocol but their diets have improved a lot.  Both of my children have tried & liked more vegetables this past month & I am making sure they eat protein, fat & veggies at every meal & snack.  They also sleep better and have more energy.

- Reduced my BMI from 20.7 to 19.8 - I was slender to begin with and did not expect to lose 6 pounds.

- Better body composition - My waist is smaller and my stomach is flatter. 


In the last week, I have reintroduced red wine, beer & raw honey.  I do not miss dairy, grains, legumes & soy so I am not going to bother reintroducing them.  I drank two glasses of a California Pinot Noir on the 26th and woke up the next day with a terrible headache and bags under my eyes.  On the 27th I followed the Whole30 protocol but then drank two beers in the evening.  Again I woke up the next day with a headache and decided to cut out beer.  I didn't miss it that much.  I went back onto the Whole30 protocol for a few days and immediately felt & looked better.  On New Year's Eve, I drank two glasses of a good quality French Bordeaux wine but made sure to also drink three glasses of sparkling water.  I also ate some walnuts with raw honey with my wine and before bed I drank more water.  I woke up the next day with no headache.  I feel best when I follow the Whole30 protocol and plan to only have wine occasionally on special occasions with friends.

I am so happy that I completed the Whole30 and I only wish that I had discovered and tried it sooner.  I am excited to head into middle age in optimal health!!  I feel like I am a better version of myself & my whole family has benefitted from this lifestyle change.  I wish everyone who has decided to embark on the 30 day challenge all the best.  You can do it & you will also feel like a better version of yourself!!!

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Update:  Because of how I feel & look after completing Whole30, my husband decided to do a "Whole10" before our ski vacation on MLK weekend so I am following it as well for moral support.  Since I had wine and sweets on New Year's Eve, our new start date was January 1st.  

Last night I was tempted to buy some wine after work to enjoy this weekend because that is what I normally did pre-Whole30 on a Friday.  I am proud to report that I resisted!  Out of all my habits pre-Whole30, drinking wine several times a week was definitely my worst habit (I was convinced red wine was good for my health) and hence the hardest to break. 

I watched an interesting & fun documentary on Netflix called "The Truth About Alcohol" which basically recommends that if you are going to drink, both men & women should have a maximum of 7 drinks per week spread out over a couple of days and that we should not drink most days.  Pre-Whole 30, I probably drank almost twice that recommended amount.  No wonder I have so much more energy now. :) 

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  • 1 year later...

I just finished my 3rd Whole30 and plan on doing my next one next January.  January is definitely the easiest month to do a Whole30 .  The worst month to do a Whole30 is December.  I did my first Whole30 in December right after Thanksgiving and my birthday.  There are so many more parties and social events in December!  This past year, I have maintained a mostly Paleo diet and have kept the many good habits I made after my first Whole30.  I posted my most recent results in another thread but decided to update my original success story:

  • On Day 31, I weighed myself and gained three pounds but I was slender to begin with so while I was annoyed, my BMI is still under 21.  I weighed myself on Day 32 and the 3 pounds disappeared.  The number on the scale affected my mood both days, which is stupid.  I am more than number and I am finally ready to permanently break up with the scale!
  • Despite no change in my weight, my stomach is flatter and my waist is smaller.  
  • My skin looks amazing!!!  I am literally glowing and one of my friends asked me if I had gotten Botox.  I have not.  Good Food = Good Skin.
  • My cheekbones are more pronounced.
  • My teeth are whiter.  I think this is because I am not snacking between meals, didn't drink red wine this month and drank less coffee.
  • I might be hallucinating, but I seem to have less gray hair around my temples. I am 43 years old and I have decided to stop dyeing my hair so this is an added, unexpected bonus.
  • I have better, steadier energy.
  • I am sleeping well every night and waking up easily every morning.
  • My biggest victory this month is really making healthy eating the most important priority for both me and my family.  I am making healthier meals for my family and waking up a little earlier to make them good breakfasts & lunches everyday in addition to good dinners.  We also talk more about healthy eating and how it makes us feel better than eating junk food.  I want my children to successfully learn how to make their own healthy choices by setting a good example and always having healthy food in the house.

Congratulations to all the people here who have just finished their Whole30 and good luck to everyone starting this month!!!  I hope my story may encourage you on your own journey towards health!!

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