Thursday, April 28, 2011

And So It Begins… Day One



Thirty days without added sugar, grains, legumes (including soy and peanuts), and dairy.

Thirty days of lots of meat, fish, eggs, vegetables, fruit, nuts, and healthy fats. No portion limits. No counting calories.

Why? To get out of a horrible cycle of low energy, carb cravings, eating unhealthy food, and generally feeling miserable. And to kick the Dr. Pepper addiction. (I’ve already been off Dr. P for almost two weeks!) Losing a little weight would be a bonus, but I don’t lose weight easily and have no expectations in that department. (I bought a scale just to get a starting weight, however, so we’ll see.)

Side bonus? No eating out. I have to go grocery shopping and plan meals. No unhealthy drinks and snacks out for the boys to snitch.

My husband, sister, and brother-in-law are doing it with me!

I will try to post a weekly update here on my blog with recipes. Here are my food ideas so far:



Sauteed veggies
Bacon/Sausage/Chicken Apple Sausages
Spinach Smoothies (banana, pineapple, huge handful of baby spinach, coconut milk, frozen berries)
Sliced banana, coconut milk, and chopped pecans (roasted in coconut oil) dusted with cinnamon

Tuna salad on tomato (soy- and sugar-free mayo)
Chicken salad on lettuce
BLT salad with guacamole dressing
Taco salad (lettuce, taco meat, tomato, olives, avocado)
Shrimp crunch salad (with shredded carrot, celery, sunflower seeds, and mayo-lemon dressing)
Cauliflower and broccoli salad (with chopped artichoke hearts, black olives, cubed chicken, and vinaigrette dressing)

Celery with almond butter
Almonds with a tiny amount of chopped dried apricots
Sweet potato chips
Sunflower seeds

Panama pork stew
Grilled tri-tip and bacon-wrapped asparagus
Bun-less burgers (with bacon and avocado) and sweet potato fries
Shrimp and veggie stir-fry
Pecan-crusted tilapia and roasted veggies
Chicken strips with marinara sauce and green salad
Spaghetti meat sauce over thinly-sliced sauteed red cabbage
Swiss steak over cauliflower ‘rice’ and green salad
Seasoned pulled pork over shredded lettuce with diced tomatoes, olives, and avocado
Chicken and veggie soup
Crab bisque and green salad
Various grilled meats and roasted veggies (brussels sprouts, French green beans, cauliflower, broccoli, yams, etc. with olive oil and sea salt)

Sweet Treats:
Pumpkin milkshake (frozen pumpkin puree, coconut milk, and pumpkin pie spice in vitamix)
Chocolate banana milkshake (frozen banana, coconut milk, and unsweetened cocoa powder in vitamix)
Fried apples (thinly sliced in coconut oil, topped with cinnamon and nutmeg)

In Desperation:
Lara Bars

I would LOVE it if those of you who are participating would post food and meal ideas in the comments and just generally let me know how things are going and what is working well for you. It is so much more bearable with the company and support of friends!


Life is not merely to be alive, but to be well. 

~Marcus Valerius Martial


Laura at By the Bushel said...

Good job!! and Good luck with the plan. Sounds wonderfully challenging, but worth it!

Sarah at SmallWorld said...

The hardest part for me has been breakfast because I feel as if eating eggs every day MUST somehow be unhealthy. BUT on the mornings when I have bacon and eggs for breakfast, I have tremendous energy!

My favorite lunch has been strips of flank steak sauteed in onion and garlic, adding 2-3 handfuls of spinach toward the end. This is amazing!

Good luck as you start your 30 days!
If you have any great breakfast ideas, please share them!

Hannah said...

Heidi, good for you! You'd better get Leif to find you some grain-free recipes in his cookbook perusals ...

Here is a link for another "sweet treat" for, a non-guilty pleasure I like to keep in the freezer. Wait, can you use honey?

I buy unrefined coconut oil by the gallon from Mountain Rose Herbs, by the way. Cheaper that way.

Rachel P. said...

Great meal plan! I'm curious how you will be dealing with the mayo and dressings you mentioned. Will you be making your own? And are you making any distinction between pastured eggs and meats and supermarket eggs and meats? Are you anticipating any savings in the grocery budget? I am continually surprised how little money I spend when cooking at home. This is a wonderful thing to be doing. (And it's also fantastic that you have family joining you.)

Kate said...

LOVE the milkshake ideas with coconut milk and fruit! And oh yes, I forgot about the Lara Bars. Mmmmm!

We're (my husband and I) on day 3. Headache just set in today, but it feels so worth it! I feel healthier already. What I am learning so far:

1) I am not a slave to food.
I need to stop living like one.
2) I can thrive on much less food than I thought.
3) God made me to crave HIM. Nothing else will
fully satisfy.
3) Cooking with "real" foods is fun and feels a bit
like artistry.
4. Just like everything else in's better
together! So thankful my man and I are in this
as a team.

Love the recipes and encouragement, Heidi. Keep 'em coming! Thanks for inspiring me!

Kate said...

One more thing...scrambled eggs with pico de gallo is one of my favorite breakfasts!

Renee said...

Good luck!!

Maureen said...

I'm in. I'll start tomorrow. Over the past 5 years, I have gained 20 lbs that seems almost impossible to lose. I exercise regularly, but the truth is I just eat way too much. I eat a lot of healthy food, but unfortunately, I also eat way too many sweets (I am a chocaholic!) I think this plan might work because I'm like an addict who just needs to go cold turkey. I can't just eat one homemade chocolate chip cookie--instead one cookie quickly turns into 4 - 5 cookies. I look forward to doing this with you. Thanks for "throwing" the idea out there!

jodi said...

i'm with you, heidi, i feel so much better when i eat this way (now that i figured out i have a gluten intolerance) but i keep my meals simple: eggs with veggies or spinach, pineapple, berry smoothie or oatmeal with berries and nuts for breakfast, 3 oz fish or poultry with salad for lunch, 3 oz fish or poultry and steamed veggies/salad for dinner. herbal (unsweetened) tea and fruits or veggies for a snack if needed.

and clearly snacks will be needed. i just signed up to be a classical conversations foundations/essentials DIRECTOR. the first in our county. have mercy.

prayers (and advice! lots of advice!) appreciated!
jodi in pa

Tina said...

Hi Heidi,

Your previous post prompted me to check this out, and I've now been eating this way for about 10 days. It's do-able, and I believe that I can keep it up for an extended period of time!

Before I started, I decided to first make a list of all the meal ideas that I could come up with on my own, and then start researching other people's ideas. There's quite a bit out there, especially if you look at paleo and primal sites.

I can't say that I feel amazing yet, but I am wearing pants I couldn't wear when I started. And I don't really crave the breads or sweets, which is nice.

I found that lettuce (I like iceberg leaves for the crunch) makes great "bread" for sandwiches, or "tortillas" for tacos or fajitas.

A while ago I found a peeler that "juliennes" and tonight I made carrot "spaghetti" with spaghetti sauce over it. It was good!

My favorite breakfast so far is roasted vegetables (sw pot, peppers, onion, zuch, carrots) with a fried egg (runny yolk) over the top. Yum!

I liked your idea about sauteed apples, so tried that for dessert and it was great.

Found that locally, MegaFoods carries the Thai Kitchen brand of coconut milk (no additives), but only in the light. Went on amazon and ordered a case of the regular for a great price. Should be here in the next day or so.

Hope to have time soon to get over to First Alternative, Mkt of Choice, & T Joes to see what they might have.

Where are you buying your Lara bars? Got the Costco pack but realized when we got them home (and opened!) that 1/3 of them are peanut!! Great price on them, though. Fred's are $1.59 each in the Nutrition Ctr.

Thanks for reminding me about sw pot chips! I tried making kale chips but got the first batch too salty. Will try again with the other half.

Hi to your other half... Tina

Heidi said...

Thanks for the kind words and support!!

SmallWorld~ The flank steak sounds amazing. I'm gonna have to try that. :)

Hannah~ I think I'm going to get Leif a new cook book. :) Honey isn't Whole30 approved, but it is paleo approved, so I might give that treat a try after this month is up! I got a huge thing of coconut oil on Amazon. It feels really strange buying food on Amazon...

Rachel~ I found soy- and sugar-free mayo at Trader Joe's. If not, I would have made my own, but I'm raw egg phobic. I've heard the vinegar 'cooks' the egg as it it blending, but still... The dressings aren't really dressings. When I do guacamole, I'll maybe thin it with olive oil. The shrimp crunch dressing is just mayo with a little lemon juice and then mixed in with the salad. Right now we are getting local eggs, but the meat... well that would break our current budget. I'm doing the best I can and looking into buying 1/4 local organic grass-fed beef in the next month or two. We are saving money not buying junk and eating out, but fresh fruits and veggies and meat aren't an inexpensive way to eat, especially organic. I bet we break even.

Kate~ Love, love, LOVE your list. I'm having a few epiphanies, myself. Interesting how that happens over something as basic as what we eat!

Maureen~ I can't stop, either. In fact, the day before day one I was saying to myself, 'I wish someone would just stop me!!' I think this plan is perfect for me so far. Good luck on your journey!!

jodi~ I need more than this little comment box to comment on your comment, LOL! You're going to be a CC director?! That's fabulous! We need to chat!

Tina~ So glad you commented! I got my mayo and sweet potato chips at T Joe's. They only had light coconut milk, and I didn't see any at Safeway yesterday, but I bought mine at Fred Meyer in the Asian section. Oh, and I saw the Lara Bars at Costco and didn't get them because of the peanuts, but I got some also at T Joe's. I think they were less than $1.60. Now I'm going to have to look for that julienne peeler. That sounds great! I'm so proud of you for already doing 10 days!!

Anonymous said...

Just finished Day 6 here.

- I'm not craving sugar like I thought I would.
- I don't know if I'd say I have more energy, but I'm definitely not having the sugar-related ups and then crashes that have left me feeling so exhausted previously.
- I'm not hungry.

- I AM craving grains A. LOT. Bread, crackers, cereal - heck, I'm even dreaming of raw oatmeal. Really miss grains.
- I'm not naturally a big meat- eater and enjoy eggs only on occasion. Maybe I'm not a 'protein-type.' I'm tiring of all the meat/eggs.
- My kids and husband are not ready to jump on board 100%, so I'm making separate things for them and am being tortured by the aromas - ha.

I'm going to see this through. But not sure I could sustain this in the 'official' Whole 30 form long term.

Favorite foods so far: guacamole with taco meat or on a burger and baked sweet potato fries - - heavenly.

REALLY appreciate all the great recipe/meal ideas in your post and in the comments!


Anonymous said...

Heidi, We aren't doing this diet as you know, but we have come to LOVE spaghetti squash with the regular spaghetti tomato sauce over it with Melody on a diet for some time now. You are all great for trying to make these corrections, at least for the 30 days. Grandma

Anonymous said...

Heidi, I am on day 16, thanks to you. I am SO happy to have started this diet. I have not felt this good in over 10 years. (seriously!) I've always know that I have a food sensitivity, but I've never been able to figure out what it was. Now, I am feeling great! I'm not bloated anymore. I don't know if I've lost weight or not, but my clothes are not as tight. I've started walking this week and doing core exercises. I'm not craving sugar or grains at all anymore.

All I can say is meal plan, and be sure to have food you can eat in the house. I've been hitting the store every few days just to keep fruits and veggies stocked. Also, I am not looking forward to this ending because I am afraid I might bring too many bad things back into my diet. We'll see, I still have 2 more weeks.

Anyway, good luck! I hope it goes as well for you as it is going for me.


our little acorns said...

We're going to jump on the bandwagon this week--just presented the idea to my husband last night and he was all for it. I am due with our 6th child in four weeks and am taking insulin twice daily for gestational hoping this will get me in good shape for enduring labor while also getting my sugars under control. Thinking I might need to eat some beans though for protein (I don't like the idea of overdoing it on meat)...but I will follow your link through to the actual Whole 30 website and see what they say about it. Thanks for the ideas! We'll be checking back in to see how you are doing too!


Me said...

I'm sure eating better will make you feel better but don't be discouraged if your energy still isn't what it has been. Your sweet baby girl hasn't been here that long and after my fourth it took about 18 months before I really started feeling like my old self (I did have some complications after the birth but still it felt like FOREVER!)
If you are still nursing the baby don't forget about all the energy your body is using to make good food for her. Now that my youngest is almost 2 I have rediscovered being up before the kids so I can get things done. It's hard to drag myself up but it's energizing to accomplish so much so early in the day!
I LOVE reading your blog! Your school posts have inspired some great changes in our homeschool.
Thanks for sharing!

Cathyb said...

Wow, when I read that you were going to be doing this it sounded really hard; but then I read your menu ideas and realized that it could be possible! It also made me think of a few ideas:

You might try your spaghetti sauce over cooked spaghetti squash (if you can find any at this time of year).

You might also try some Thai lettuce wraps using chicken or ground beef, garlic, ginger, red pepper, water chestnuts, and diced onion. Most recipes do use soy sauce, but I think you could probably leave it out. Or do the same lettuce wrap idea with Mexican-flavored meat.

Kate said...

A few favorite recipes from this week:

Bistro Steak Salad
-Romaine lettuce
-thinly sliced and chopped deli roast beef (or even better--left over steak)
-sprinkled with Balsamic vinegar

Fiesta Chicken Salad
-Sliced Chicken Breast
-Topped generously with pico de gallo

Fiesta Lime Chicken
Rub chicken with Pampered Chef's Chipotle Rub
then grill it and top with pico de gallo and a squeeze of lime

And my all time FAVORITE--could not survive without--treat: FROZEN RED SEEDLESS GRAPES.
Remove them from the vine and place in a freezer safe bowl. Freeze and voila! Tiny little bits of frozen goodness whenever your craving sweets!