Take Charge of Your Health with The Whole30 Challenge
By Kelly Smith, Contributing Writer
Did you resolve to eat healthier in the New Year, only to find yourself falling back into the same old eating patterns after trying to make healthy changes?
I’ll be honest, for years I struggled to eat healthy, because frankly, I wasn’t sure what “eating healthy” really meant. I simply had no clue as to what foods would help to nourish my body and which foods might be creating setbacks in my health.
It wasn’t until I became very ill with two autoimmune conditions that I began to realize that taking care of myself by eating healthier was the key to not only helping my body to heal, but it’s also been the secret to enhancing my overall well-being – in other words, improving my mood and energy levels too!
Whole30 to the rescue …
If I would have known back then what I know now, I immediately would have taken The Whole30 Challenge. The reason I say this is because after two rounds of Whole30, I’m absolutely convinced that this free nutritional program can help people to discover improved health by helping them to begin the process of discovering which foods are beneficial and which foods may be contributing to poor health.
What is Whole30? And why take the 30-day challenge?
The Whole30 Program is a free, nutrient-dense, elimination diet that can help you jump start your health and get started (or make better progress) on your healthy living journey. That’s because Whole30 shows you how to nourish your body with pure real foods while eliminating the most common problematic (and typically less nutrient-dense) foods. It’s a great way to detox from processed foods and also from potential food allergens that you may not even know you’re sensitive to.
And for those of you, like me, who may be suffering from chronic health issues – or suspect that food allergies or sensitivities may be impacting your health – taking The Whole30 Challenge can truly be life-changing!
In a nutshell, Whole30 can help you to:
- Nourish your body with whole nutrient-dense foods in order to facilitate improved health and well-being;
- Eliminate sugar addiction and other unhealthy eating patterns; and
- Help you to begin to identify potentially problematic foods that may be sabotaging your health.
One of the biggest reasons I recommend The Whole30 Program is because it’s based on a real food lifestyle that aims at helping individuals to develop a personalized approach to their diet. It isn’t a one-diet-fits-all program. Instead Whole30 helps you to discover what foods work best for your body and which foods do not based on your unique body and health issues.
By taking The Whole30 Challenge twice now, I’ve discovered several food groups that are problematic for me personally. As a result, this invaluable knowledge has helped me to experience a significant improvement in my health and wellness.
In addition, I’ve not only witnessed amazing changes with my own personal health, I’ve heard countless testimonies from reader-friends (who’ve taken The Whole30 Challenge with me) about how this program has impacted their health for the better too. But don’t just take my word for it. I encourage you to read the success stories of countless individuals with a wide variety of health issues who’ve successfully completed the Whole30 program with amazing results.
Of course, even with all of the positive changes that often result from Whole30, it goes without saying that you should always work with a medical professional to address any health concerns. As much as I believe in being proactive about your own health, it’s not wise to do it alone. Having a trusted healthcare professional to partner with you is key to ensuring good health, and the early diagnosis of serious medical conditions.
Helpful free resources to make your Whole30 journey easy and delicious!
Another thing I love about Whole30 is that it’s free! That’s right, free. You can find everything you need to know about the program on the Whole30 website.
Of course, the book “It Starts With Food” is an incredible resource that I highly recommend, but you don’t have to purchase it to achieve success on Whole30. And just so you know, I don’t receive any form of reimbursement for recommending the Whole30 program. I’m just one of thousands of people who’ve experienced the benefits of Whole30 and want to help others – particularly those struggling with health issues – to discover this life-changing program.
In fact, I’m such a huge proponent, I’ve created a wealth of free Whole30 resources and support to make it even easier for individuals and families to take The Whole30 Challenge. So if you’re interested in seeing what Whole30 can do for you, then please know I’m here to help!
Here are just a few of the free resources I’ve created to help make your Whole30 journey easier and tastier too!
- Quick Start Guide to Whole30 – In my comprehensive DAY ZERO: Getting Ready for Whole30 post, you’ll learn: How to get ready for your 30-day healthy living journey; tips for stocking your pantry for quick Whole30 meals, and find lots of encouragement and helpful tips to ensure your success.
- Free Whole30 Meal Plans & Recipes – I’ve also created lots of delicious Whole30-compliant recipes that make following the program easy and delicious. But even more exciting … I’ve put together a series of free Whole30 meal plans to make it even easier to complete the program! Each free Whole30 Meal Plan Kit features family-friendly Whole30-compliant meals, a shopping list and prep-ahead tasks that make getting a healthy meal on the table a snap.
Discover what “eating healthy” means for YOU!
Back to that New Year’s resolution thing … if you’ve been struggling to find the right diet to address your own personal health concerns, then I encourage you to take a little time to check out The Whole30 Program.
With Whole30, you’ll not only learn how to nourish your body with wholesome real foods, but also begin the journey of discovering what foods may be creating setbacks in your health, and the health of your family members. That’s why I’m such a big fan of Whole30 and have made it my mission to help as many people as possible to discover this life-changing program.
Have you taken The Whole30 Challenge? What’s your experience been? We’d love to hear your story too!
Please note: I am not a healthcare professional, therefore this post is not intended to replace the advice of a physician. As noted in the article above, I highly recommend partnering with a trusted healthcare professional to address any health concerns.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. When you buy through our links, we earn a small commission, which helps to keep this site going so that we can continue to offer free and useful content, so thanks!
This seems great but there are those of us who are simply not made to eat this way. I need grains. They seem to be the main fuel by body uses. I also feel much better eating almost completely vegetarian/vegan. Maybe a Daniel Fast/plan would be better for my type?
Angela, it sounds like you’ve already done some kind of elimination diet of sorts to come to the conclusion as to which foods work best for your body/health. I do want to clarify that the point of Whole30 isn’t to eat this way for 365 days a year (it’s a VERY restrictive diet), that’s why it’s specifically called Whole30 because it’s a 30-day program. What Whole30 does is allows individuals to safely eat a nutritious diet focused on the real food lifestyle while taking out the most common allergens and foods that can cause health issues and digestive issues. They also provide a Whole30 plan for those who follow a Vegetarian lifestyle and those who are following an autoimmune protocol. Those variations are explained on their website and in detail in the book. Again, the purpose of this plan isn’t to preach one-diet-fits-all but to help people who are having health issues, or simply want a starting point to getting off the SAD track, to pinpoint what foods may be causing physiologic and/or psychologic issues (addiction to sugar or simple carbs for example). Of course, I am definitely not trying to push that Whole30 is the perfect program for everyone, but simply offer it as a healthy way for many people to discover which foods work best for them based on their unique health issues. I hope this helps to further clarify. Blessings to you on your healthy living journey! 🙂 Kelly
I’m not sure where to start…. I’m going to be 50 in 3 months and my goal was to be in the best shape of my life. I tried the whole 30 a while back and it didn’t work out. This time, I was ready. In the beginning I did some snacking (whole 30 approved foods). I lost the craving for sugar and wine after about a week. I take care of my grandsons (8 and 20 months) and when they take naps I usually nap with them. The BIG turning point for me was last week, I was rocking one to sleep and thinking, I hope they both sleep long enough so I can clean out my fridge. At that point, I realized that I hadn’t taken a nap in over a week and didn’t feel the need 🙂 The biggest thing I would say, is have a supportive person along for the ride with you. My daughter has been doing it with me and I am VERY sure I wouldn’t have been able to do it alone. I did “cheat”, I weighed myself. Oh and THANK GOD for Lara bars after a long run. I hope this encourages anyone reading this to give it a try. Sounds corny/crazy, but it can change your life. GOOD LUCK!!
Thanks for sharing your story, Stephanie. I’m so glad that Whole30 has helped you experience the empowerment of taking charge of your health and your cravings. That is one thing that I really love about the program is how it not only helps us discover the foods that can be harmful to us physically, but it also helps us to break the cycle of feeling like we have to give in to unhealthy cravings. And you are so right, having a good support person(s) really makes a huge difference in sticking with the program. That’s why I provide a support group on FB and so many other resources. It’s such a joy and blessing to see so many people experiencing positive results in their health and energy levels as a result of completing this 30-day program. Thanks again for sharing your story! 🙂
I did my first Whole30 back in October. By the time I was done, I realized that something I was eating was a trigger for my digestive issues. Once I did the re-introduction it didn’t take long to figure out dairy was the issue. Now that I’m dairy free, I’m off several medications and not having any digestive issues. Doing the Whole30 has really made life better for me.
I’m so thrilled to hear how Whole30 has helped you discover foods that are triggering health issues. Praising God with you that you’ve been able to get off of several of your medications! I pray that you continue to experience improved health and well-being. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your wonderful story!
If anyone is considering doing the program I wanted to encourage you to give it a go. I just finished my first Whole30 and I feel amazing. Not only did I lose 12.5 pounds and inches I was able to get my thyroid levels (I’m hypothyroid) in normal range in just six weeks from my diagnosis. And only four of those weeks was I on Whole30 so I give the program the credit for my progress. The program is much more doable than I anticipated and my family has enjoyed the food and health benefits as well. I do plan on doing more rounds to achieve optimal health!!
That is so wonderful to hear, Rena! Thanks so much for sharing your story with us! I pray that your health will continue to improve and that you’ll be able to continue to make great strides in your healthy living journey! Blessings, Kelly
I just finished my first Whole30 and besides losing 7 lbs I have seen a noticable difference in my cravings and what foods I thought I really needed. My skin is softer and I have gotten remarks on how healthy it looks. I used to take forever to fall asleep at night but now I seem to be able to fall asleep alot quicker. I definitely have more energy and I am not groggy when I get up in the morning. I am excited to see my Dr this week because my BP is down also. I am going to keep going for another 15 days and complete a Whole45. I figured with the success I have seen in the last 30 days I will notice more benefits still. I still have sugar cravings occasionally and I am hoping that I can eliminate them completely since this was one of the main reasons I tried this program. Yes, there are things I miss but I am realizing that I dont miss dairy as much as I thought I would, I am lactose intolerant so its better for me not to have the dairy. I think what I learned most from this last 30 days is that I can do it! I can have control over my food instead of them having control over me. If you are considering this program, I would recommend it. It can’t hurt you and it is only 30 days.
Tamii, I am praising God with you! I am so happy you’re feeling better and you are SO right! We CAN control our cravings, and it’s so awesome to feel empowered, isn’t it? Thanks for taking the time to share your story. I’m so glad you mentioned how you’ve gained control over your cravings, because it’s one of my favorite things about Whole30 – it truly empowers you to take control of why and how you eat. Keep up the great job! I wish you the best on your healthy living journey!
Well, it’s official. My husband’s first Whole 30 is complete. He’s lost 18 pounds and finally understands why I choose to eat this way!! His arthritis is much better and he’s actually running again (it’s been over 5 years!!). We choose to eat this way 95% of the time, the other 5% we enjoy some of Kelly Smith’s wonderful baking. 🙂 After my first Whole 30 in October, I’ve never gone back to grain, dairy, or processed sugar and I’ve enjoyed the added energy, endurance and better sleep! Thanks to everyone who makes this community what it is!! May Gob bless you all abundantly!!
Thanks for sharing you story, Beth! I love it when husbands come on board too as it makes it so much easier when the whole family commits to eating healthier. I’m so happy for your and your husband’s positive health changes. I wish you the best as you continue on your healthy living journey! Blessings, Kelly