What I learned doing Whole30 September

By Richa Gupta, Founder, Good Food For Good

This September my partner and I did Vegetarian Whole30.

WHOLE30® is an elimination diet not intended for weight loss but more for food freedom. You can read more about the diet here. In short, you are not allowed to have the following:

  • Dairy
  • Grains (corn, wheat, rice)
  • Added sugar
  • Legumes (chickpeas, lentils, soy)
  • Alcohol
  • Pasta
  • Bread
  • Processed additives (carrageenan, MSG, sulphites)
  • French fries and potato chips

 

You are encouraged to have a lot of whole foods, totally my jam! You can happily enjoy the following:

  • All vegetables, including potatoes
  • Fruit, including strawberries, watermelon, apples, oranges, and bananas
  • Seafood, such as fish, oysters, shrimp, and mussels
  • Unprocessed meats, including beef, chicken, and pork
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Eggs
  • Olive oil and coconut oil
  • Black coffee

 

Whole30 also encourages to eat three square meals that are well balanced with protein, good fats and carbohydrates instead of snacking all day. I loved that! Traditionally Whole30 requires you to eat animal based protein at every meal and for a vegetarian who occasionally ate eggs was a bit challenging.

 

Overall, I felt Whole30 helped me become more creative in the kitchen, I started using seeds as a good source of protein and good fats vs. relying solely on eggs. Whole30 does allow you to have peas in all forms, however, I am not a big fan of peas so I had to look outside and come up with nutritionally balanced vegetarian meals that don’t have eggs in every meal.

 Whole30 Journey, Whole30 Recipes, Richa Gupta, Good Food For Good

I am adding some of my family favourite recipes that have become a regular in our house even post Whole30.

 

I did lose a few pounds and so did my partner, not something we expected as we were eating a lot of food. It’s been 30 days since and I am keeping most of my meals still grain free. I introduced legumes first as that’s one food group that I missed the most. I learned Wheat and heavier grains like Barley or Teff are harder on my digestive system leaving me lazy and bloated post meals.

 

I have still not added dairy and sugar and don’t miss them at all as I was hardly consuming them prior to Whole30. Same applies to processed food and alcohol, they were both not big part of my diet. Throughout the 30 days I didn’t notice any mood swings, cravings or Tiger Blood I am assuming it has to do with my diet already being pretty whole foods based. I noticed hardly any bloating or digestive discomfort during the 30 days (that was great!) and now I am able to pin point what causes that and I can control it.

Overall, I feel it was a positive experience and made me see my food more creatively vs. relying on the standard recipes that I was making everyday and it helped me identify foods that were causing my occasional digestive discomfort.

 


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