Pearls + Girls Goes Whole 30 {Week 4}

It’s nearing the end of my first Whole 30!  Check out my favorite recipes from last week and get my final thoughts on one month with no dairy, grains or sugar!!!

whole30logo ~ Pearls + Girls

Sooooo….Whole 30.  Yeah.  It’s real.  I kinda love it.  And I kinda hate it, too. 😉

What I loved:

1.  I felt really energized!  Sometimes after eating a heavy meal all I want to do is veg out on the couch and take a nap, even if there is absolutely no reason for me to be tired.  I never felt that way on Whole 30, not ONCE.

2.  I slept really well!  While on Whole 30 I went to sleep more quickly and didn’t toss and turn as much.  I also never got up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night.  That has been unheard of since having children, let me tell ya.

3.  I ate more fruits AND I liked it!  I’m pretty good about incorporating veggies into meals, but I really don’t eat as much fruit as I should.  While following Whole 30 I ate my fair share of berries, bananas and apples, which gave my body the fuel it needed without the sugar overload.

4.  I got more creative in the kitchen!  Food rut, anyone?  Doing Whole 30 inspired me to include more fruits, veggies and herbs into my weekly menu.  Fresh herbs were a bit of splurge for the budget since I can’t grow my own in March, but I was able to balance it out by purchasing frozen seasonal berries.

beef stew Photo: One Lovely Life

What I hated:

1.  I didn’t lose much weight.  FYI, Whole 30 is not a weight loss plan.  However, when I was doing my research I discovered that some people DID lose weight over the course of the program.  I didn’t start this program with a goal of losing weight, but I figured if I cut bread, dairy and sugar out of my diet it would be inevitable.  In the end I think it was the red meat, coconut oil and nuts that did me in.

2.  I’m sick of eating eggs.  I usually eat cereal for breakfast, so doing Whole 30 forced me to come up with a different plan for weekday breakfast menus.  Luckily, I love eggs, so even if it took a bit of time to prepare them each day, I was into it.  Fast forward to week #3 and I was kinda over it.  Eggs didn’t even sound good anymore, so I pretty much relied on bananas, nuts, bacon and berries to carry me through the last week of Whole 30 breakfasts.

3.  Dining out is virtually impossible.  Sugar seems to be lurking everywhere, even in lunch meat and salad dressings, so even if I tried to avoid traditional carbs like bread and pasta, it was still really, really hard to avoid sugar on restaurant menus.  Even though I enjoy cooking, I do wear the only (adult sized) apron in my family, so going to a restaurant is a luxury I look forward to on occasion.  On Whole 30 there was no one to cook for me but……ME.

4.   Baking for others while on Whole 30 was torture.  I had to cook for my kids who wanted to eat pancakes, mac and cheese and cookies.  I had to bake St. Patrick’s Day treats for my blog and thank you treats for my readers that participated in my baking challenge.  I also had customers that ordered cookies from my Etsy shop.  I just can’t stand the smell of something baking and NOT want to eat it!!!

pineapplechicken

 Photo: The Gracious Pantry

Would I do Whole 30 again?

Probably not.  I think Whole 30 is a bit too strict for me.  I have always been a strong believer in ‘everything in moderation’, so cutting out entire food groups was a challenge for me.  Plus, hello.  I write a baking blog.

I must say though, the positive impact Whole 30 had on my energy level and sleeping habits made me rethink what and how I eat.  Many of the Whole 30 friendly meals were delicious, and I will definitely be incorporating some of them into our weekly menu rotation.   You can find my favorites herehere and here.

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