Yep, it’s the start of a new year, and I, like so many others, am once again jumping on the bandwagon to attempt to make some positive changes in my life this year. Initially, I was not planning to diet to kick off 2017. I’m at a point in my life where I accept that I will never maintain a size 6 (heck, I’m doing great when I can maintain a 14), and my focus now is on keeping my blood pressure in check and other health markers a-ok. What I eat has a lot to do with those things.
So I’m going to tackle a Whole30 (vegetarian style) and reset some of my eating habits. If I lose some weight, bonus.
If you’ve never heard of Whole30, it’s a whole foods based eating plan that eliminates wheat/gluten, sugar, and processed foods. It is paleo-ish but not low carb; the estimated macro breakdown is 35% fat, 40% carbohydrates, 25% protein – though the program specifically advises against counting calories and macronutrients. The idea is that you eliminate things that could be causing inflammation, sleep disturbances, etc, and once you’ve completed 30 days, you reintroduce various things slowly to determine how they impact your body, and develop your future eating plan from there.
It sounds like a great plan, but I do have one bone to pick with the program. The book that kicks it all off is called “It Starts With Food.” The program heavily relies on animal protein (meat). They put forth some scientific evidence for their approach, which is fine, but a good 10% or more of the population doesn’t eat meat for a variety of reasons – medical, ethical, religious, etc. The book attempts to accommodate a vegetarian approach, but not before condescendingly pointing out that vegetarians are wrong (just read all the science we laid out for you!) and ethical vegetarians are wrong (just eat non-factory-farmed meat!) and… the attitude just doesn’t sit well with me. The authors repeatedly state that you can do Whole30 as a vegetarian, but you’re not REALLY doing Whole30. So, sure, you can follow along and pretend you’re doing our program, but you’re not really one of us. Just remember that; we’re smarter than you and healthier than you and you’ll never reap the full benefits of the program with your lowly vegetarian ways.
I’m only slightly exaggerating here! It’s so condescending that the first time I read the book, I decided NOT to do the program because, well, the authors seemed like jerks.
I changed my mind this year because a blogger that I follow, Jen at Peanut Butter Runner, is hosting a Whole30 Facebook group to kick off the new year. With a whole lot of people to bounce the experience off of, chances of success and enjoyment go up. And I would like to get back into cooking and eating more whole foods.
Since a vegetarian Whole30 requires modifications of the original Whole30 rules, I will be making some modifications. I plan to lay out my own “rules” at the outset and follow the plan that way. I’ll be sharing those modifications and some of my meals here on this blog, so stay tuned!
The official kickoff is Monday, Jan 9, 2017, so if you’re interested in joining this Whole30 group, check the link above! Happy new year!