Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Whole 30 (and 2011 Results!)

As of January 2nd, I have started an intense month of tighter compliance known as The Whole 30. It’s basically just being strict Paleo without letting the little slips and cheats in. For me, it means finally eliminating dairy completely for a set period and nixing all the sugar (mostly maple syrup and stevia) that has crept back in to my diet, especially around the holidays. Otherwise, it’s the same old grain and legume free high (good) fat/low carb diet I’ve been rocking for months now. I will be having a smattering of fruit and sweet potatoes while doing this version, since it’s allowed although in a pretty limited fashion (maybe 1 or 2 carb servings of either type a day). A girl’s got to live a little!

To prepare for this month, I stocked up on my favorite herbal teas (I LOVE Tazo Passion, for example). When you’re not eating sugar, it really seems like a treat. I also got a bunch of different varieties of nuts to make a trail mix with a few raisins (not sure if these are OK, but there are just a few) and coconut flakes. Best trail mix ever! We’re not supposed to go crazy with the nuts since they can be high in Omega 6s and do have some not-so-nice-to-the-gut properties. But, in my experience, they’re pretty self-limiting for me – I’ve never been one to eat them by the bushel. Just too filling anyway. Additionally, I got some delicious grass fed beef, some chicken parts, and even some uncured hotdogs/sausages to keep me full and satisfied. Lastly, I topped off my fresh and frozen veggie stores to make sure I always have some on hand to round out a meal.

And I can’t forget the ghee! This is a change to the Whole 30 Program made with the latest update. Since ghee (clarified butter) has had the milk solids removed and contains only the most trace amounts of either lactose or casein (the problematic sugar and protein components of milk), leaving only the very healthy buttery oil, it is OK on the program now. I am thrilled about his because I’m not the hugest fan of cooking things in coconut oil. I just don’t like the taste with cooked food. I will, however, be trying a refined version that is supposedly tasteless but still has most of the good qualities of the real deal (virgin). We’ll see. It would be great to alternate them for variety and also for the different nutrients they contain. I also have some beef tallow, just to keep things interesting!

2011 was a great year for making progress on this journey. I managed to lose another 2.5 pounds during December, bringing my final total for 2011 to 48.5 pounds lost. The amazing thing is that I did not feel at all deprived of the holiday food fun. I had a great time making lots of grain-free treats and I’m at peace with having let myself be a little looser with the sugar intake during that time. I feel great about the balance I seemed to strike between indulging and not forgetting myself or my goals. This bodes well for the future since this isn’t a short term solution for me but rather only the first year of the rest of my life in which I plan to take good care of myself. It’s unrealistic to think I will be Whole 30-level compliant every single day ad infinitum – that’s just not how life is. There will be ups and downs but it’s good to know that this way of life is sustainable in a realistic way that is both effective and fun.

Want to see what I’ve been up to? Check out my Weight Release Chart to get the scoop.

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