My wife Heather, recently decided that she wanted to try the Whole 30 diet, and also that she thought it might be a good idea for me to try it as well, and I like the idea of her being happy with me. Although I cringed at the thought of giving up my current diet of junk food and soda, I reluctantly agreed. What is the Whole 30 diet, you ask? Well, basically for 30 days, you stop eating and drinking everything you love, and start eating and drinking every boring thing you can think of. You think I’m kidding? Well..maybe a little. All kidding aside, this diet is supposed to change everything you think you know about food, by eliminating those items that cause inflammation, resulting in much healthier you. No grains, no dairy, no added sugars, no preservatives, and NO FUN! (kidding again). The beverages for me are the boring part. You can drink water, black coffee, and tea, which means no sodas, no energy drinks, and no alcohol. I haven’t had alcohol for over 13 years, but the sodas and energy drinks I’ve had almost daily in some form for quite some time.
I tried a version of this a few years back while seeing a wellness doctor for some issues I was having. After 2 years of going to the University of Minnesota, they couldn’t figure out why I was getting skin lesions for no apparent reason, and my joints felt like they were on fire! I guess from their point of view if you can’t fix it with pills, there’s nothing much they can do for you. Besides, I’m sure the medical industry rather prefers life-long customers as opposed to natural cures. On a former employer’s advice, I went to see her family wellness doctor, who started me off with an elimination diet, and a few natural supplements to help detox my organs. Within a few weeks, I was feeling better, losing weight, had almost no pain in my joints, and my skin was finally starting to clear up. It wasn’t just my body either, my mind was reaping the benefits as well through better concentration and memory function. It was the best I had felt since graduating from boot camp in the Army when I was 18. I wasn’t quite in that good of shape physically, but you get the point, right? Anyway, I did this for a few months before a car accident left me feeling sorry for myself and instead of crawling back to the bottle, I crawled back to the ice cream container and other junk food. I haven’t been able to put together any real-time involving healthy eating, so this is something that’s been a long time coming.
So…here we go. It’s just before bedtime at the end of day 1, and though I’m feeling nervous about doing this because I’m terrible at self-control and discipline, I’m also very hopeful that maybe there’s a chance I can pull this off. Today I basically survived off of lemon water, fruit and veggies, but I also managed to have a hamburger (no bun) topped with avocado and sampled some panfish fried in egg yolk and almond flour that I prepared for my lunch tomorrow. I have a feeling that planning and preparation are going to be the hard part of this whole thing, which is where Heather comes in.
Heather has celiac disease and has to lead a gluten-free, dairy-free lifestyle, and has for quite some time. She’s a pro at finding tasty alternatives to the things she can’t eat but would sure like to. She’s also a phenomenal cook! So let me tell you I’m grateful to have her by side. I surely would have eaten myself into an early grave without her. I’m going to have to change a lot about daily eating habits, especially at work. But with her guidance and creative dietary know-how, I feel like I at least have a shot at pulling this off. Who knows, maybe I’ll even like it.