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What I learned from my first Whole30


Let’s start from the beginning… If you told me 7 years ago that I had to abstain from grains, sugar, alcohol, gluten, nightshades & many of the packaged foods that made my day to day life more convenient. No way! Wasn’t happening. Especially the sugar & alcohol part. I was so convinced that I ate healthy enough. That there was nothing to be done about my skin condition. I had settled in to a life of mediocre health with occasional debilitating days. Hidradentitis Suppurativa isn’t the kind of disease people talk about. Inverted acne, large, painful & in very sensitive areas. I never talked about it. I suffered in silence. I settled.

Fast forward to today, armed with the knowledge of auto immune diseases, the guts role in immune health and how foods can trigger auto immune responses- I changed. I’ve been eliminating foods from my diet for over a year now and have found that gluten, night shades & refined sugar cause reactions. I’m not in 100% remission– but it’s better, much better. Maybe it speaks to how I have evolved as person, a mother. I don’t even consider my trigger foods anymore. Maybe it’s because my relationship with myself has evolved too. I finally feel I’m worth it.

As I turn 30, I wanted to bring in this new decade of my life in optimal health. Now that my son was finally weaned, I wanted to get my body back. So many reasons. Especially as a person who has always been big. Healthy, active, but always slightly (sometimes not so slightly) overweight. This is it, this is the time to finally break that cycle. I want to be fit for me, I want to be able to to all the things my son wants to do & not be restricted; by the HS, weight or self esteem.

What Whole30 showed me was the flaw in my habits. I thought I had it all figured out when it came to food. I’ve been working in farm to table kitchens for years, I come from a family of talented cooks & health conscious food aficionados. I know food. I know what to eat. What I didn’t see, or didn’t want to, was all the mindless snacking. Whole30 made me hyper vigilant of what I put in my body– and it immediately eliminated the bites of my son’s snack, the taste of my husbands lunch, the late night munchies, all the little bites. While I cooked, or cleared the table, while packing snacks to go on a hike. So many little bites that added up to “feeling stuck” with my weight, to never seeing results, yo-yoing. Never feeling really hungry. I ate a lot. I ate too often. In the last 30 days my diet has totally changed. I am eating high fat, high protein meals, 3 meals a day. No snacks, maybe 1 fruit between a meal. I’m not starving- ever- but I am hungry when I sit down to eat. It feels great. I feels great to be out and about 3 hours after lunch and still feel satisfied, knowing I have not eaten anything else. I see results. In my face, my skin, my body.

I’ve decided to continue on a strictly paleo diet because feel amazing- because I know now that a Paleo diet, free of night shades is what is right for me.

Life between Whole30’s….I will resume enjoying the occasional #sywpo (treats), grain free bread, paleo confections & chocolate. I will still enjoy a glass of wine every now & then.

I will continue to be meticulous about my food choices. I will be accountable. 

Food is emotional for me- but not as a coping mechanism. I love to cook! I love to cook beautiful food and that is my therapy- not the eating part.

My 30th birthday is this Friday. I plan on making a spectacular, paleo birthday cake, which I will enjoy in moderation, because I am Whole30.

I think the best part of this experience… I am proud of myself.




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6 thoughts on “What I learned from my first Whole30

  1. kristen

    I am so proud of you too! And very inspired! thanks for sharing. My eating habits have gone way downhill since moving to the dirty south lol. Basically everyone eats fast food, sometimes multiple meals a day and as long as I’m not doing that I felt I was eating pretty ” healthy ” but no so… Got back to the gym this week and looking for a plan that’s right for me. Want to be a good example for Scarmo , and feel better. We miss you guys! Love to see everything yall have been doing on IG and FB. Hugs and kisses from all of us

    1. Aw girl! Thank you! You can do it!!!!!

  2. Melisa H.

    Good for you! I’m on Day 36…sugar cravings are still there and I fight them every day. I’ve lost 23 lbs. in the last month-so I’m doing something right.
    What exactly are nightshades? Ha! I guess I should have read my Whole 30 book more-lol!
    Loved your article!
    Happy Birthday!
    Melisa H.

    1. Amazing Melisa!
      While I didn’t have too many sugar craving… I did miss chocolate!

      Nightshades are a group of plants & vegetables that produce an alkaloid compound called solanine. The vegetables include potatoes, peppers, tomatoes & eggplant.
      All of which you CAN eat on Whole30… I just can’t because they are a trigger for my skin condition.
      23 pounds! Wow! Way to go! I lost 13lbs in this Whole30 and plan to do another soon!
      Thanks you for stopping by and sharing with me 🙂

  3. pam

    What a fantastic journey and wonderful birthday present to yourself Cristina!

    13#, 23#?! I am nearing the end of my whole30 (1st) but I’m not sure I lost that much. I fight my sugar dragon everyday. :/
    How did you lose so much?!

    Very inspiring and encouraging!!

    1. Hi Pam!
      I focused more on what I COULD eat than what I couldn’t. Most of my whole30 meals were large bowls of vegetables with protein on top. Lot’s of lush raw veggies, lots of water. Moderate excersize. I’ve lost 40lbs total, but have been strict paleo since my 1st whole30… the sugar dragon is the worst. Even I still fight it… which is why I will continue to do Whole30’s periodically… to keep it at bay 🙂

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