The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom by Melissa Hartwig

The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom

Millions of people visit Whole30.com every month and share their stories of weight loss and lifestyle makeovers. Hundreds of thousands of them have read It Starts With Food, which explains the science behind the program. At last, The Whole30 provides the step-by-step, recipe-by-recipe guidebook that will allow millions of people to experience the transformation of their en...

Title:The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom
Author:
Rating:
ISBN:0544609719
Edition Language:English
Number of Pages:432 pages

The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom Reviews

  • Denise

    For people who want to whole30, but don't necessarily want to read all of the science-y stuff of why a whole30 is good for them, this is a great book. It answers a lot of questions about the whole30, covers just the basics of why a whole30 is good (if you want more in-depth, read "It Starts With Food"), provides shopping lists, lots of great recipes and a wonderful collection of resources for support, shopping and additional reading. Very well done.

  • Carol Evans

    I can't tell you if The Whole30 is a healthy choice, although the Hartwigs give plenty of reasons why it is. What I can tell you is that I'm glad I did the 30 days and will hopefully eat better having done them. My hsuband and I did it together which was definitely helpful.

    The Whole30 rules in the most basic form are easy to understand. YES: Eat meat, seafood, eggs, vegetable, fruit and natural fats. DO: Do not consume sugar, alcohol, grains, legumes or dairy. Do not consume baked goods or "trea

    I can't tell you if The Whole30 is a healthy choice, although the Hartwigs give plenty of reasons why it is. What I can tell you is that I'm glad I did the 30 days and will hopefully eat better having done them. My hsuband and I did it together which was definitely helpful.

    The Whole30 rules in the most basic form are easy to understand. YES: Eat meat, seafood, eggs, vegetable, fruit and natural fats. DO: Do not consume sugar, alcohol, grains, legumes or dairy. Do not consume baked goods or "treats." Do not weight or measure yourself. I know it seems pretty restrictive, but like they say, "keep in mind that the Whole30 was intended to be a short-term reset and learning experience, not a permanent plan."

    The theory is that as you slowly add the foods back in, you will see how your body reacts. Like I know dairy is not my friend and this reminded me of that fact. I felt good when I was eating the Whole30 foods, like I was doing something positive for my health. Losing 8 pounds didn't hurt either. And my husband lost almost 20. Even the dog lost 2.

    It does take a lot more planning and work to eat real food. I needed to have breakfasts that David could easily grab in the morning, because he was not going to cook himself anything. I also had to plan enough left-overs from dinner to pack for lunches or have another back-up. It takes more time in the kitchen, chopping, cooking. I'll grant you it's easier and cheaper to open a box or can or throw (processed) lunch meat between two slices of bread, but real food makes me feel better, makes me a little proud of my choices.

    The Whole30 has a great guide on how to approach the month and an extensive FAQ section. It also has some really yummy compliant recipes, that use ingredients I can actually find.

  • Kristie

    I didn't read this book in-depth. I started out reading, realized that I would never be able to maintain a diet this stringent, and started skimming over parts.

    There is a lot of information in this book, from the basics (How to roast a whole chicken) to the creative (how to cook eggplant or sweet potato to use in place of your burger bun). It also includes many delicious recipes. Many I will try...enough that I might be tempted to buy the book to have on hand, not enough to make me stick strict

    I didn't read this book in-depth. I started out reading, realized that I would never be able to maintain a diet this stringent, and started skimming over parts.

    There is a lot of information in this book, from the basics (How to roast a whole chicken) to the creative (how to cook eggplant or sweet potato to use in place of your burger bun). It also includes many delicious recipes. Many I will try...enough that I might be tempted to buy the book to have on hand, not enough to make me stick strictly to the diet. In my mind, that is good enough. Make a few small changes and they add up. Eat some yummy healthy foods and maybe you want to do so more often. This is not what the book claims. They want you to follow the diet to the letter. If you mess up, even a little, you should start all over at day 1. Don't make any foods, even with approved foods, that resemble cheat foods or you may crave them more and you won't be retraining yourself properly.

    For me, this diet is simply too strict and would be too time consuming. I'm sure there are many, well some, people that would try it and be able to stick with it. Some of those people may even love it. I'm sure they'll feel better and be healthier than I will. For me, eating delicious foods is part of enjoying life and I don't like to cut anything completely out of my diet unless it is absolutely necessary or won't really be missed. I do try to eat relatively healthy, but certainly not to this extreme.

    If you are a health fanatic, this may be the perfect book for you. Or if you have certain health conditions that require you to follow a strict diet, this may work for you as well. It was simply a bit too much for me.

  • Meghan

    I read this in preparation for doing their plan starting next week, so I don't feel like I should rate the book until I've completed the 30 days. That said it makes nutritional sense, has a nice layout, and the sauce recipes!!! It's so hard to find good sauce recipes without a ton of added junk. Looking forward to seeing how this gradually affects my half marathon training. Hopefully for the better!

    --

    Update, Whole30 Day 1: It's 11:31 a.m. and I am lucky enough that part of our catered lunch at

    I read this in preparation for doing their plan starting next week, so I don't feel like I should rate the book until I've completed the 30 days. That said it makes nutritional sense, has a nice layout, and the sauce recipes!!! It's so hard to find good sauce recipes without a ton of added junk. Looking forward to seeing how this gradually affects my half marathon training. Hopefully for the better!

    --

    Update, Whole30 Day 1: It's 11:31 a.m. and I am lucky enough that part of our catered lunch at work today is edible on this plan. I brought two egg muffins (eggs, jalapeno, bell pepper, spinach, salt and pepper baked at 375F for ~20 min.) I made last night and heated them up at work for breakfast. Honestly, without cheese, they're a little bit meh. Definitely need to work on better spicing them—and maybe overcooked them a bit? Anyway, I ate those around 8:30 and I'm starving. Lesson for tomorrow: bring snacks.

    --

    Update, Whole30 Day 3: Last night I made

    , only I substituted some cold pressed apple juice and white wine vinegar for white wine when I deglazed the pan (worked fine). Delicious! If every meal was like that, I'd be set. Unfortunately, I can't bake a whole damned chicken every time I need to eat. Today, for instance, I was down at one of the Google campuses for a meeting during lunch, and while they have tons of lunch options, there were so few I could eat on this. I ended up eating a plain turkey burger patty with some lettuce for lunch. Not so inspiring. I think I may end up being one of those Whole30 people who starts toting homemade sauces around in my bag. Tonight's dinner: baked potatoes and cajun-spiced salmon filets. It'll be my first time using ghee for anything, and I'm not sure what to expect putting it on a potato. To be continued.

    --

    Update, Whole30 Day 9: I was trucking along quite nicely last week, and then the weekend hit, and with it,

    . I'm told by the book that this is the sugar leaving my body. It may also be my sanity leaving my body—I had zero energy whatsoever. Didn't cook, didn't grocery shop, didn't clean house, didn't do much but lay on my side and read some Thackeray and go see Star Wars for the third time.

    Fun fact: Honest Kids is a brand whose products I can generally eat on Whole30.

    Another fun fact: Most grocery stores' delis sell pre-baked whole chickens. Guess what I ate all weekend, with bagged salad?

    Monday rolled around, and I think my energy came back in the form of pure, un-distilled rage. Every little irritation felt amplified, every wrench in a socket derailed me completely. I think it's coming home how much I've relied on unhealthy eating or a glass (or...however many) of wine to cope with negative feelings toward the end of the day. Over a week in without any security blankets and I'm feeling very raw around the edges.

    This is supposed to pass. To be continued.

    --

    Update, Whole30 Day 11: First, this book has the absolute best guide to making the most perfect hard-boiled eggs ever. I've had a sort of inkling about the right way to do this for a long time, but this version comes out perfect absolutely every single time. (To wit: boil a small amount of water—just enough to cover eggs—to a rolling boil. Put eggs in the water, time for 9 minutes exactly. Remove from heat, put eggs in ice bath for 5 minutes. Peel under running cold water. Perfection.)

    Second, my mood is very slowly improving. Which is good, because my energy still isn't 100% back.

    Third, today's catered lunch had something I could eat!!! Absolutely delicious chicken breasts with caramelized onions that were so soft and sweet they were almost a sauce. I am far too impatient to properly caramelize onions at home, so I appreciate them done well elsewhere.

    Andres and I are going out of town this weekend for a couple nights, and while I can pack hard boiled eggs and plenty of snacks, it may end up being a challenge to find meals consistently that we can eat. Wish us luck.

  • Sunshine

    If there was an option for zero stars this book would take the cake! Oh wait, cake isn't allowed. Neither are peas, vanilla extract, or even making "unhealthy" things from their compliant ingredients.

    This book does not have anything in it besides some good recipes that would even make it worth holding onto. My husband and I tried this for 9 days. I kept a log that was as follows:

    We already eat really healthy to begin with. (We both drink regular water but I don't feel the need to list that every

    If there was an option for zero stars this book would take the cake! Oh wait, cake isn't allowed. Neither are peas, vanilla extract, or even making "unhealthy" things from their compliant ingredients.

    This book does not have anything in it besides some good recipes that would even make it worth holding onto. My husband and I tried this for 9 days. I kept a log that was as follows:

    We already eat really healthy to begin with. (We both drink regular water but I don't feel the need to list that every single time):

    Day 0: (Aug 22) Got all the groceries set in our new home/fridge and we had donated out anything not compliant to local food pantry. Only good noms in our cabinets, fridge, and freezer! Thought this will be as easy as making eggs!

    Day 1: (Aug. 23) Hubby and I excited for this! He made us eggs for breakfast. We had a stew of potato and shredded chicken for work lunches. Had boiled egg and unsweetened applesauce as snacks. Famished when we got home! Ate some almond butter, then some chilled shrimp, baked chicken, and green beans for dinner. Drank coconut water. Slept very well!

    Day 2: (Aug. 24) Woke up at 5am with a TON of excess energy. Happy. Ready to start the day! Stomach looked less bloated. Hubby made us up some chorizo and eggs. Very rich breakfast. Had unsweetened applesauce and a boiled egg as snacks. We had a stew of potato and shredded chicken for work lunches again. Famished when we got home again! Went to Subway and got a chopped salad with all veggies and some oil/salt/pepper/vinegar as dressing. Drank coconut water, water, and licorice/breathing tea. Slept okay.

    Day 3: (Aug. 25) Got up wanting to stay in bed, but made myself get up. Got ready and liking this meal prep thing. Hubby made his own "tomato sauce" with some V8 and chopped up smoked apple wood sausage. Some other stuff was in there too. Spices, etc. Had green beans and smoked apple wood sausage. At 3pm my stomach was very upset. Ran to bathroom. It settled finally thankfully. Had a tomato and a boiled egg as snacks. Ate grapes, cashews, last of chicken, some frozen mango slices and a Lura bar (only has dates and cashews) with a decaf iced black coffee. Went and did our laundry. Drank coconut water and green tea. Got to bed late. Angry over someone parking in our spot that we pay for. This is the second time this has happened and we haven't even been at our new place a week!

    Day 4: (Aug. 26) Woke up and kinda had to force myself up. I jumped into making our food. I made up a breakfast omelet of egg, dill weed, seasoning, garlic salt, mushroom, and black olives with some grapes on the side. Feel kinda shaky and run down. I think a lot of this is my body resetting and getting used to this new way of eating. Plus I am really angry over the parking thing because hubby had to park on a different street and I had trouble finding our car this morning before work and it really stressed me out. Made celery, black olive, black pepper, olive oil, lime juice, chopped can shredded chicken, and mango chilled salad for us for our work lunches. Company had a picnic that I couldn't and didn't want any of the food from because it was sugary or not healthy. Told co-worker of this because she was going to sit in for me while I went back to get food, but I told her she didn't need to. Felt weird telling someone else about my diet, felt judged but that's all just from me overall not sharing my personal life with other people often. Brought unsweetened applesauce and a banana with some almond butter as snacks. Drank breathe easy tea.

    Day 5: (Aug. 27) (Notated this in a notebook and haven't gotten around to adding it in yet)

    Day 6: (Aug. 28) ... Drank ginger tea before bed. Hubby and I were both like "Why can't we have snacks?" When I pointed out I had read on a forum Whole30 is not supposed to involve snacks unless you absolutely MUST have them and then only to be boiled egg. He asked if we should give up and then he could have beer. I legit only thought of Cheetoes in that moment and them shook my head no. We are sticking with this!

    Day 7: (Aug. 29) Headachey. Stomach hurts. Got a LOT of sleep. Ate a breakfast pressed bar of pineapple, apple, spinach, and kale with some grapes. Snack had a boiled egg. Headache went away after egg. Stomach very full feeling today to point of painful almost. Fiber intake up maybe? Lunch of baked chicken, stewed carrots and grapes. Noticing less food cravings and thankfully not hungry for unhealthy foods. Had ginger tea with lunch. (Went to Whole Foods) Drank tea.

    Day 8: (Aug. 30) Didn't record food today. Remember having eggs for breakfast with mushrooms. Pumpkin seeds as a snack and a real pear. Pear was delicious. First time I ever chopped and ate a pear all myself as opposed to having a piece from someone else or not fresh. For lunch I had potato wedges with a boiled egg. Felt off due to work stuff. Made a little mistake. Tried not to stress. Dealt with it and was excited to be home. Had butternut squash noodles with some salsa, mushrooms, and shrimp. REALLY tasty. Ate a mini Lara bar with some cashew butter. Drank green tea.

    Day 9 otherwise known as Hell to the No: (Aug. 31) Had to change breakfast plans due to food not being thawed enough. Had pressed apricot and kale bar and walnuts. Pumpkin seeds for snack. Chicken and stewed carrots for lunch. Breathe easy tea. And orange for lunch. Mom said she is planning to start Whole30 tomorrow. Hubby cranky (redacted) about how restrictive this Whole30 is. (redacted). We already ate pretty healthy before, basically a (redacted) moment happened and we went to Famous Daves. That's right! We enjoyed the (redacted) out of some noms! He got a beer and I had mac and cheese and we both had corn muffins and all sorts of things that they said no too cause they don't own us! They don't get to dictate to us! No sir! We rebelled. We felt great! We felt full and we felt ALIVE! So (redacted) with the "rules" We make our own! We decided to keep eating healthy at home, to keep looking at labels but if there is only alittle of an "off-plan" ingredient and it's a $2 difference to go for the cheaper option. Going out to eat we can get whatever we like. Being obsessive about food should not trump being able to enjoy life when we want to! I think this diet is more for people that don't already eat healthy and drink a lot of pop and consume (redacted) ton of sugar. We don't do any of that.

    Day 10: (Sept. 1) Finished the last of the leftovers from last night. Drank breathe easy tea and regular tea. Pumpkin seeds for snacks. Salmon, olives, and fruit leather for lunch. Did laundry after work and got a black iced decaf coffee and a fricken doughnut that we split between the two of us. Finished reading the Whole30 book. Around page 85 it starts to get bat(redacted) crazy. Seriously? Calling a restaurant ahead of time and asking them to clear the grill of oils before cooking your food? (redacted) no. What kind of privileged sense of entitlement makes them think that's okay to do? That's rude is what that is. No we are done with this (redacted)and never doing a plan like this again. Lessons learned.

    Only plus side of this book would be for people who already don't eat properly enough or drink a lot of soda. Or someone who likes being controlled/restricted and who doesn't want to enjoy their lives at all. Yeah, that's who this book is for. Mindless sheep who can't think for themselves.

    Read about other books I have reviewed here:

  • Shelby P

    I'm on day eight of The Whole30 and so far so good. I've been grocery shopping more frequently than ever before. Breakfast is the hardest meal because I don't want to eat eggs without toast but I haven't cheated. I was tempted to add some regular butter to a bake potato the other day but I didn't!!

    I love the recipes in the book. I followed the recipe for a steak and it was the best steak I've ever eaten that I cooked. I'm eating more vegetables with this diet so that's a good thing. I know I won

    I'm on day eight of The Whole30 and so far so good. I've been grocery shopping more frequently than ever before. Breakfast is the hardest meal because I don't want to eat eggs without toast but I haven't cheated. I was tempted to add some regular butter to a bake potato the other day but I didn't!!

    I love the recipes in the book. I followed the recipe for a steak and it was the best steak I've ever eaten that I cooked. I'm eating more vegetables with this diet so that's a good thing. I know I won't stick with this forever because I can't live without bread but I'll definitely reduce my intake of sweets and processed foods!


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