The Whole30

Dieting is a touchy subject that I addressed briefly in my blog post Spring Break Body. There are few diets that I will ever endorse due to the negative connotation attached to the word, but I’ve recently come across the Whole30 diet, and it is one of the few that I will ever personally endorse. It has been endorsed by doctors, nutritionists, dietitians, physical therapists, and acupuncturists worldwide. (Testimonials.) As many health issues have to do with your diet, I find it important to mention that it is reported that the Whole30 can actually help with skin issues, digestive ailments, seasonal allergies and fertility issues.

Most diets tell you to eat less, eat fewer meals, buy their prepackaged meals online, or an endless list of other crazy things. You should never eat less; you need your calories. You should never eat fewer meals; you need to keep a healthy, regulated metabolism. For the love of god, you should never eat prepackaged meals. Do you have any idea how many preservatives and hidden additives are in them?

The Whole30 diet is unlike most diets that you have ever come across. Whole30 has nothing that they’re trying to sell you. They’re not trying to help you get fit and sexy in the next 30 days. They are not at all your typical diet program, though they are one of the most difficult diets out there.

It’s not going to be easy, but as Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”

The only thing that the Whole30 diet advertises is making you feel the healthiest you ever have in your life.

The Whole30 rules are (in summary) as follows:


Eat meat, seafood, eggs, tons of vegetables, some fruit, and plenty of good fats from fruits, oils, nuts and seeds. Eat foods with very few ingredients, all pronounceable ingredients, or better yet, no ingredients listed at all because they’re totally natural and unprocessed. Don’t worry… these guidelines are outlined in extensive detail in our free shopping list.


Do not consume added sugar of any kind, real or artificial.
Do not consume alcohol in any form, not even for cooking.
Do not eat grains.
Do not eat legumes.
Do not eat dairy.
Do not consume carrageenan, MSG or sulfites.
Do not try to re-create baked goods, junk foods, or treats* with “approved” ingredients.
One last and final rule: You are not allowed to step on the scale or take any body measurements for the duration of the program.”

Personally, I don’t think that I could ever follow this diet, but I’m only missing out. The benefits listed in the advertising for this program as well as in the testimonials are substantial. Yes, this is a hard diet, and yes, it is possible. In fact, many testimonials state that after the Whole30 challenge, it can be hard to return to your old diet. The reason for this is that many things in your everyday diet aren’t necessary nor healthy for you.

It’s important to note that the food pyramid that many people abide by is drawn up to sell exactly what the government wants us to buy. Two major groups on that are dairy and grain, neither of which are at all essential to the human diet. Don’t believe me? Ask a celiac or someone with lactose-intolerance if they’re still living and breathing.

Something I like the most about the Whole30 diet is their final rule of no scales and no measuring. This shows that this diet really is just for your health, though you will reap countless other benefits from it. (It is important to note that it is acceptable to measure yourself and step on a scale before and after the Whole30- just not during it.)

Unlike most other diets, the Whole30 will change you not only physically, but mentally. On their site, they hilariously outline each of the stages of the Whole30 challenge, and they’re not lying. I have a friend who did the Whole30 diet and calls it one of the best things she ever did, but you should know what you’re in for. If you can make it through this challenge, then you deserve my undying respect. To see the timeline of the stages to expect, head on over to the Whole30 Timeline!



3 thoughts on “The Whole30

  1. Spencer A Coolidge

    Leading a health lifestyle is an extremely important thing to do. In order to be healthy, one must monitor the food that they put into their body. This food is fuel and the better the fuel, the better that person’s body will respond. Whenever I think about diets I always think about one of my favorite quotes, “Abs are formed in the kitchen, not the gym.” The Whole30 diet seems pretty efficient but is a bit too strict for my liking. I think I’ll just stick to Dining Hall food and Wings Over for the time being.

  2. Sumit Pareek

    This was a really cool post. I’m looking forward to your blog (even though we only post one more time this semester). Personally, I would never be able to follow a diet like that. Some of the items like sugar and dairy and grains are a part of my daily diet! It’s hard to establish such a stringent attitude with diet plans, but I guess this really tests your discipline. I’m really interested in the “don’t look at a scale” idea because the point it makes is much different from the other diet plans. The major reason why I wouldn’t do this diet is because I wouldn’t be able to eat carrageenan. Carrageenan is the red algae that makes ice cream and milkshakes soft; living in an environment where Berkey products are readily available is why I would break my routine immediately. Regardless, WHOLE30 sounds like a better diet than most you would see on TV or online. Awesome post.

  3. Amy Major

    I agree in that the word “diet” is a very touchy subject. Oftentimes when people say they are going on a diet they are automatically judged, but it should not always have such a negative connotation. I never understand the diet adverts I see on TV where you can eat pizza for lunch and brownies for desert but still lose weight? I think the whole30 diet looks really interesting and I wish I could confidently say I’d try it some day, but it does seem really difficult to follow. Nevertheless, I bet the people who succeed in following the diet look incredible and feel incredible afterwards.

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