What is the Whole30?

It has been a busy week of subbing, looking at new places to live, and learning about the Whole30.  I mentioned the book “It Starts With Food” in a previous post and finally got a chance to read the whole book. It was super interesting and informative and it was not difficult to decide to try it for myself. Tomorrow I begin my Whole30 journey! 🙂

What is the Whole30?

The book states the standards that the food we eat should:

1. Promote a healthy psychological response

2. Promote a healthy hormonal response

3. Support a healthy gut

4. Support immune function and minimize inflammation

The Whole30 is an elimination diet, with no cheating or indulgences for one month. It eliminates “hormone-unbalancing, gut-disrupting, inflammatory food groups” which are:

sugar/alcohol: for obvious reasons, it does nothing good for you

dairy: our adult bodies don’t necessarily need dairy and can get better use of calcium from foods such as kale, steamed spinach, nuts, and seeds. caesin in milk can cause a histamine response which creates headaches–may help with my migraines

grains: vegetables and fruits contain the same amount of fiber and contain carbs, vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that are more beneficial for our bodies; the more whole grains on our plates, the less vegetables and are micronutrient density of our food is lower

legumes: can fuel bad gut bacteria and lectin in legumes can induce immune response which causes inflammation which leads to a variety of health concerns

After 30 days, participants will know how the eliminated foods that used to be eaten regularly work in your body–how they affect energy levels, sleep, mood, physical performance, as well as skin, hair, joints, and digestive tract.  It is a short-term nutritional reset, designed to help restore a healthy metabolism, heal digestive tract, calm systemic inflammation, and put an end to unhealthy cravings, habit, and relationships with food. After the 30 days, I can reintroduce grains, legumes, and dairy (as well as a little sugar and alcohol if I choose to) one at a time to see how they affect me and how much I want to include in my daily diet.

I am interested to see how this will affect my body.  In the past year, I have had unexplained rashes on my face, arms, and hands.  I have had a history of sinus infections and migraines.  I get stomach aches quite often. I recently got diagnosed with Raynaud’s phenomenon (blood vessels that feed fingers and toes constrict in reaction to cold–even holding glass of cold water–or emotional stress) where my skin turns white and blue, my fingers and toes get painful and numb and then throb and tingle and sores form. The book has a lot of information about how certain foods and processed foods affect our bodies and cause inflammation which brings on a variety of health issues. I hope to see improvement in all of these areas as well as with my cravings and unhealthy relationship with food.

What Can I Eat?

meat, seafood, eggs, tons of veggies, some fruit, plenty of good fats from fruits, oils, nuts, and seeds.

foods with very few ingredients–all pronounceable–natural and unprocessed

Great websites with food ideas:




I will be posting my daily eats and workouts as well as how I feel during this process. I am super excited to start this tomorrow, but a little scared. Like how am I going to avoid that cookie at school or what do I do when someone asks me to get a coffee with them (I can have coffee–but organic and no sugar or dairy in it).  But like the book says, it is only 30 days and it is worth giving it a try to see how good you can feel and what improvements can be made on your health.



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2 Responses to What is the Whole30?

  1. Erin Winesburg says:

    Hey Brittany! I’m seriously considering this whole30 diet for myself as I really struggle with snacking and sugar cravings(specifically after dinner). I do have a couple questions for you though. Is Matt following it as strictly as you are? I feel like Nicholas needs snacks throughout the day since he is always hungry and isn’t worried about his weight (he’d actually like to gain some). Do you think it would be okay if he had healthy snacks between each meal? Nick said he would do the Whole30 mainly to support me and to cut out most of the processed foods that he eats daily. Should I just have him
    eat the meals with me and then he can be on his own with snacks and sugars since he doesn’t struggle with these anyway? Or should he be following the diet as strictly as I will be?

    You’re blog has really inspired me to make some changes and has given me some great ideas for workouts and meal ideas. Last spring, I worked really hard at
    losing some weight and toning up and I was very successful and kept it up all summer but as soon as winter hit I started to gain some back. The last couple of months i’ve been working hard at it again and your blog has definitely been a motivation. I was just saying to Nick I wonder what exactly Brittany did to loose weight & look so healthy and when you made the blog I got my answer, so thank you!

    • bnbell91 says:

      Hey Erin! I’m glad you are interested and inspired! I highly suggest reading the book I mentioned a few posts back because it answers all the typical questions and gives you all kinds of ideas for food and a some meal plan ideas. Matt is following it just as strict as me (at least for 2 weeks and then he will add protein powder to his diet) because if he has just a little sugar he won’t get the same results for what the Whole30 can do. He does feel hungry between meals so he has been snacking on cashews, macadamia nuts, banana or apple with almond butter, any fruit, leftovers. I also make sure to add more protein to his plate and squash/sweet potatoes/any starchy vegetable. And to make sure that I cook everything in healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, ghee and include avocado or olives. It is really nice to kick the processed food cravings and eat real food.

      Good luck with whatever you choose to do! I really appreciate the positive feedback 🙂

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