As I near the halfway point (!!!!) of my Whole30 journey, I am discovering that I’ve found my groove! The first couple of days, I really had to think everything through. What to eat, proportions of protein to produce and fats, wondering if I’d eaten enough to carry me to the next meal, etc.. Now, its coming more naturally! Also, my days of jonesing for a Dr. Pepper (which, BTW, I haven’t had since HIGH SCHOOL and don’t really even care for anyway!) have gone. In fact, last weekend Mr. Bean enjoyed his wine and chocolate sitting right next to me, and I was just fine! (I did take a big sniff of his pinot grigio, however, and that was delightful.) I don’t believe this is because I have incredible will power. (For the record: I DON’T!) I attribute some of this to a few things. I’m going to call this my Top Ten list of Whole30 Survival Strategies. 🙂
- First, the Whole30 recommends following a specific meal template. I find that adhering to this as closely as possible helps curb cravings because my meals truly satisfy me. If I start daydreaming about sugar cookies again (yeah, that’s been happening, too!), I re-evaluate if my proportions of proteins, veggies and fats is off, and adjust.
- Eat your fats! You need them! You are retraining your body to learn to efficiently metabolize fat (YAYYYY!), instead of the readily available carbs that it used to. This is a process. But getting your good fats in helps you to feel satisfied.
- In other but related news, enjoy your salt without guilt. When you have suddenly banished all forms of processed foods that contain salt, and find yourself exclusively eating whole foods, you will need to add a lot more salt than you did before. Salt is good for you. Your body needs it for the trace minerals it contains. Also, it makes food taste good!! So use as much as you need.
- AVOCADOS: they satisfy the “creamy” texture that Whole30 is otherwise missing. I like to buy them at Costco, and when all of them get ripe at the same time but you can only eat one, go ahead and slice them all up anyway and put them in Ziplocs (one or two to a bag), freezing what you don’t plan to use. Then you have lots on hand for emergencies!
- HOMEMADE MAYO with the immersion blender: easiest. thing. ever. You can watch my mayo demonstration here! You can mix any kind of seasonings into it and use it as a condiment for just about anything. I like it with some onion powder and dill … kinda like ranch! And it is nothing but good, healthy fats. Little Bean likes to swirl his fingers through it and lick them! 🙂
- Having seasoned ground beef prepped and ready to go in the fridge. You can eat it with anything. While you’re at it, prep 2 lbs (or more!) instead of one. (It goes fast.) Going along with that, … when you are prepping a recipe, as much as possible, prep (or double or triple) extra! Saves some work later.
- Trader Joe’s organic cauliflower rice!! Enough said. Find it in the freezer section. Stock up.
- Having a “cocktail:” when I need a treat, I pour sparkling water into a fancy glass (stemless wine glass!) and mix in a couple ounces of organic juice. Very refreshing hydration and keeps me going.
- OK, now I’m going to get real: CHIPOTLE. Yep, you read that right. Their carnitas (which BTW is my favorite of all their meats) is the ONE meat they offer that is Whole30 compliant! (This is due to not being prepared with soybean oil.) So, now I have Friday night dinner taken care of if I feel like I just want to have a break from dishes. I get the salad. (Avoid the sautéed peppers and onions, as they are prepared with soybean oil, too.) All of the other veggies, lots of salsa (no corn salsa), add guacamole, double the meat, and skip the dressing. YUMMMMMMMY! Probably not pastured pork, but once a week ain’t gonna kill ya!
- And last but not least, REMEMBER WHY YOU STARTED. As I have daydreams of cinnamon rolls or melted cheese from time to time, I take a step back and ask myself if it will really taste as great as I’m thinking it will. I also ask myself if it is really worth it to trash all of the progress that I have made … for a cinnamon roll. If all else fails, this brings me 180 degrees back and sets me aright.
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