whole30: week 1 meal highlights

It’s been 10 days since I started my Whole30, but I haven’t really written much here about the journey so far.  I have posted food photos on social media, so follow me to see those.

First, I’ll tell you a little about how I prepared for us to start our Whole30.

Initially, I thought I would leave all the non-compliant salad dressings and other items in the fridge and work around them, but feared Andrew would get confused or tempted to use them.  Thankfully, we have a fridge in our basement, so after trashing most of the items (mostly because they were almost empty or old), I took a few things downstairs for safe-keeping.  (I’m not sure I’ll even use them again, but I was finding it really difficult to dump entire bottles of soy sauce and brand-new mayo in the trash.)  I also grabbed anything non-compliant from the pantry and stashed it downstairs and out of Andrew’s sight.

Here’s what remained:

  It’s like you could hear crickets in there!  I was shocked at how many items in my fridge contained sugar or soy or gluten.  Not that I’m necessarily against any of those things, but they’re forbidden during the Whole30, so out they went.

Then, (after giving the fridge a nice wipe-down, of course), I filled it back up.
 I bought tons of fresh fruits and vegetables, six pounds of meat, a few ’emergency’ bars to keep in the car or my purse, coconut oil, coconut milk, approved salsa (for eggs!), coconut aminos (a soy sauce substitute), a jar of organic sauerkraut (for probiotics), shredded coconut (for ‘breading’ meat), almond butter (peanut butter isn’t allowed) and kombucha.

I started Friday, April 1 with coconut milk in my coffee (that lasted 5 days, I’m on tea now), two hard-boiled eggs and a clementine.  Also part of my plan: my Made to Crave devotional.  I’m doing the Whole30 because I noticed I was starting to eat more sugar/sweets/unhealthy foods for no good reason, and then would feel bad (physically and emotionally) afterward.  Time to get back to being filled by God, not food! While I’m not posting all my meals on social media, I am trying to photo some of the better/more memorable ones to inspire others to eat healthy, real food.

Our Saturday breakfasts aren’t always big, but in the past I’ve tried to whip up pancakes or something else Andrew likes more often than not.  So, for day #2, I made a veggie-egg scramble with roasted sweet potatoes (topped with clarified butter and cinnamon), a grapefruit half and some low-sodium V8.  Often, my source of fat is avocado and Andrew’s is nuts.
 After church on Sunday, the family went to Wegmans for lunch, where I made a beautiful salad with shredded beets, carrots and zucchini, berries and salmon.    One of our first dinners was an Asian stir-fry with ground beef, veggies and coconut aminos (tastes like soy sauce!), steamed baby bok choy and a clementine.
 Another dinner: buffalo chicken chili topped with pickled jalapeños and homemade ranch dressing.  I had to grab lunch out on Wednesday after teaching my body conditioning class, so I made a salad with chicken, guacamole and pico de gallo.  Fruit to balance the spicy pico!
 On Friday night, we brought dinner over to the Nye’s house, and I wanted to pull out all the stops to show them that this ‘diet’ is really delicious and not a bummer at all.  (I was expecting quite the ribbing from both of them, but was pleasantly surprised by the lack of comments.)  I made stuffed peppers, a cilantro-lime ‘cauli’ rice and cabbage slaw.    For breakfast the next Saturday morning, I again tried to ‘wow’ Andrew a bit.  Fresh fruit salads for both of us, a little kraut, avocado with salsa and two poached eggs for me, and cooked chicken and pepper slices for Andrew.
 Overall, I would say week 1 was easier than I anticipated it being, and other than some slight fatigue (which, according to the Whole30 timeline, is normal), I feel great!  I’ve eaten ‘paleo-style’ before and really enjoyed it, so I figured I would enjoy this as well.

The Whole30 is definitely restrictive, and I miss my morning coffee (I get what they say about needing to buy ‘good’ coffee to enjoy drinking it black, but I DO buy good coffee, and I still really like the mouthfeel of a little sugar and cream).  Not pictured here: the meal I had to send back at restaurant that came out with a cream sauce that was NOT mentioned in the menu description.

Coming next week: walnut-crusted pork tenderloin, red sauce and meatballs over spaghetti squash, a chicken ‘hash’ with sweet potatoes and apple (looks divine!) and a chicken chowder.


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