Stockings are no longer hung with care and the holiday decorations are being stored away. In the process many of us will feel the tightness around our waist and will make a commitment to a diet once again. Out of all the diet trends which one is the best? I have tried several myself, and I am slowly working towards a healthier lifestyle versus the occasional diet. My favorite by far has been the Whole30 challenge.
The best and worst part of the Whole30 is the elimination of all sugar and sugar substitutes. While I wanted to bang my head against a wall attempting to drink my much needed coffee with no sugary yummy creamer, I finished off the month with the ability to maintain a lower sugar diet, of course until the holidays recently occurred. The Whole30 also excludes food with dairy, alcohol, grains, junk foods and a few more items.
I successfully completed the Whole30 challenge last year, and I was shocked by how much more I learned about food during that month. I have been gluten free for years due to an intolerance so I felt pretty confident in understanding the ingredients in food prior to the challenge. During the challenge, I discovered how many foods contained surprise sugars. My biggest surprise was picking up a can of tomatoes to add to a recipe to read that they contained sugar!
Because I had been gluten free for many years, I had many familiar recipes that were already compliant with the diet requirements or could be easily amended to be compliant. I do feel like my comfort in the kitchen made the challenge less overwhelming to approach. Due to my three littles ones and hectic schedules, quick compliant dinners were a requirement. Thankfully, many are available online.
One of the best things about the diet was that I could eat as much food as I wanted as long as it was on the approved food list. There was no counting calories, counting points, or logging my food. It was just eating simple clean food. Focusing completely on my will power to make it the entire month and preparing foods was all I had to do.
When choosing a diet this New Year, it is easier to make it a lifestyle choice when good home cooked food can be made. Learning to cook well and efficiently is a key component. A diet can feel less like a diet if it tastes good. During my challenge I made some delicious new meals that have become staple meals in our home.
Although weight is not the end goal of the Whole30, I did lose 10 pounds my first round with no added exercise. I slept really well on the challenge leaving me rested and energized at the end of the 30 days. I am hopeful another round will help me cleanse the large amounts of sugar I consumed these last 40 something days during the 2017 holiday season.
Writer Bio: Summer Bolte
I spend most of my time and days with my three kids, husband and dog. My kids frequently play near me as I garden, cook, DIY and volunteer. My most unusual paying job has to be feeding fruit flies in a research lab, and my most fullfilling job was being an oncology nurse for seven years.