Like many of its predecessors, quick-fix diets are designed to, well, be a quick-fix solution for a particular event (your wedding, for example), but are not designed to be sustainable. Reading through a few of these diets might give the impression that you’re taking on a lifestyle change, but cutting out a certain component from your daily nutrients is hardly a long-term plan worth sticking with.
So, naturally, the Whole30 diet is another one we’re taking with a pinch of salt. According to co-creator Melissa Hartwig, “Whole30 isn’t just a harder or more extreme version of Paleo, it’s a short-term intervention designed to teach people how the food they are eating impacts them, and ultimately help them create their own perfect diet.” Hartwig claims that this isn’t a weight loss diet. It’s apparently a tool to help you improve your relationship with food.
Well, we can’t debunk this theory until we’ve tried it ourselves, and as a health website, we are sure we’ll find a guinea pig among our writers to volunteer their services, but until then, we’ll just break it down for you.
For one month, or a whole 30 days, your basic meal plan will be:
- 8:00 am: Breakfast (your choice of eggs)
- 10:30 am: Mid-morning snack (a fruit of your choice)
- 1: 00 pm: Lunch (meat of your choice, with a side of veggies)
- 3:30 pm: Mid-afternoon snack (your choice of vegetables)
- 6:30 pm: Dinner (meat of your choice, with a side of veggies)
- 7:00 pm: Dessert (a large bowl of fruit)
What This Means For You
- You will need to make a very conscious effort to throw away all gluten and sugary foods you have in your kitchen cabinets.
- It will involve an overhaul of your groceries (an added expenditure, above the month-long ordeal of what we like to call a sugar withdrawal).
- You will need to stock your refrigerator with fresh fruit, veggies, eggs, chicken breasts, ground turkey, and thin-cut pork loins. This also means no bacon. Yes, we sympathize.
- With the Whole30, you are encouraged to be strong and not weigh yourself until the end of the month.
Tips To Stay Strong & Go The Whole Nine Yards
- Don’t go at it alone. Misery loves company and having a partner makes it easier. There’s also a good chance they will stop you from cheating on the diet.
- Get adventurous with your meals. Trying different flavoring agents could help keep you from wanting to kill yourself (figuratively, of course).
- Plan ahead. There’s no other way to stick to the Whole30 diet if you don’t have a strong plan of action. Also, it’s a great time saver.
- Prepare for your meals in advance. This goes hand-in-hand with planning your meals. Prepping your ingredients in advance will help you stick to your timetable, and also give you a better idea of how you want to prepare your meals.
- Finally, don’t skip dessert. Your sweet tooth might start acting up, and depriving yourself now will only increase your chances of satiating that sweet craving somewhere else; in all likelihood, with something you’re not supposed to eat.
As always, if it gives you a stipulated time-frame, don’t exceed it. After all, you are depriving your body of carbs and sugars, and like everything else, cutting out an entire food group is never a good thing. Find a balance and perhaps, like Hartwig suggests, you may just start eating better and improve your relationship with food.