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Whole 30 Game Plan

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Do you make New Year’s resolutions? I am not a fan of them, but I do think using the new year as a jumping off point for a healthier lifestyle seems to fit. I have been mentioning for a couple of months now that I am starting Whole 30 on January 1st, and today I decided to make it official and share my Whole 30 Game Plan with you.

Check out The Ultimate List of Whole30 Recipes for more healthy and delicious recipes.

A collage image with clam chowder, pork with sweet potatoes, and ranch dressing with graphic title across the top.

Why Whole 30?

I probably should have started this post with: Hi, my name is Lisa and I am a sugar addict!! That my friends is going to be the hardest aspect of this new way of eating, and that is what I am dreading the most, lol. This is not Paleo, there will be no peanut butter and banana ice cream, or avocado brownies to enjoy on this plan. Just real, wholesome food prepared in the simplest ways possible….like my Simple Pot Roast with Carrots and Squash.

Pot roast, chopped carrots and squash on a large platter.

What is Whole30?

Okay good, I haven’t lost you yet. Maybe I should start by explaining what the heck Whole 30 is??? Whole 30 is a way to reset your body and determine which foods are negatively affecting your body and health. Think of it as an elimination diet, but with an actual plan for how to survive and eat yummy food while doing it. 😉 I did not have Pecan-Crusted Pork Tenderloin and Mashed Sweet Potatoes to enjoy when I did my first elimination diet 9 years ago!!

Pecan-Crusted Pork Tenderloin slices on a bed of mashed sweet potatoes next to sautéed spinach.

I pretty much lived on eggs, bacon, tuna, lettuce, and chicken for 30 days. 🙁 But not this time, we are going to eat delicious foods and hopefully I will figure out the last of my food allergies that are causing so many problems! lol This is also why I felt the need to create a Whole 30 Game Plan to get me started.

Whole 30 in a nutshell:

  • No dairy* – this includes cow, goat, sheep and all of the products made from them – cream, cheese, kefir, yogurt, sour cream.
  • No grains – wheat, rye, oats, corn, rice, quinoa, buckwheat, etc. This includes the bran, germ, and starch.
  • No legumes – no beans of any kind! black, pinto, white, lima, fava, chickpeas, lentils, or peanuts. This includes all forms of soy, so no miso, soy sauce, tofu, edamame, tempeh. Check your labels for soybean oil and soy lecithin, they are no-nos.
  • No sugar – none, nada, not even the artificial kind! No maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, coconut sugar, stevia, etc.
  • No alcohol – none, nada, not even in cooking!

Take a deep breath….wipe the tears from your eyes….we can do this! 😉

*Exceptions to the rules:

  • Clarified butter and Ghee are allowed. The milk proteins need to be removed or they could affect your results.
  • Fruit juices are allowed as a sweetener, just don’t overdo it.
  • Green beans, snow peas, and sugar snap peas are allowed. They are technically legumes, but are more of a pod than a bean.
  • Vinegar – white, balsamic, apple cider, red wine, champagne, and rice vinegar are allowed. Always check your labels, flavored and varieties that contain sugar or malt are not allowed.

Whole 30 is not a diet to lose weight, but that is usually an added benefit. The real goal is to feel better, eliminate sugar cravings, jump start a sluggish metabolism, fix a messed up digestive system, and in my case…fix an overactive immune system! Inflammation is the underlying cause of most illnesses, including allergies. By eliminating the foods that cause the inflammation, the body begins to heal and stop overreacting to pollen and minor allergens in extreme ways.

Anyone that has trouble with acne, allergies, anemia, celiac disease, chronic pain, colitis, depression, migraines, lupus, joint pain, ADHD, gingivitis, arthritis, or high blood pressure can benefit from Whole 30. The list is much longer, but these are the most common ailments that doctors prescribe medications for on a daily basis. Wouldn’t it be nice to eliminate the need for medication and heal your body with food? That is my goal, and I hope you stick around until February to see the results. 🙂

Game Plan 2.0 and 4 Weekly Meal Plans are at the bottom of this post!

As I looked through my recipes, I actually found quite a few that will work with this plan:

Whole30 Recipes

Why did I share so many recipes? To show you that a lot of your favorite foods are already compliant, or can easily be converted to Whole 30! I also want you to have a nice selection of meal options to get you through the first few weeks if you decided to join me on my adventure.


New Whole 30 recipes created since the original post

Tools used to create these recipes:

{includes affiliate links}

  • I will do my best to create recipes that will work with multiple cooking methods, not just Slow Cooker or Instant Pot….but those are really handy to have for busy weeknight meals.
  • A Food Processor or Ninja Kitchen System is a must for Cashew Cream and soups.
  • I will also be using a Spiral Slicer to make veggie noodles for Chinese New Year recipes, and to make vegetables more fun. 😉
  • For more detailed information, The WHOLE 30 book is awesome, and they just released a Whole 30 Cookbook as well.
  • Sharp knives, meat thermometer, baking sheets for roasting and baking vegetables, and of course some pots and pans when your are not using your slow cooker or instant pot, lol

Instead of adding every single Whole 30 recipe to this page, I will give you the links to last year’s Game Plan 2.0 (that includes what I learned from my first challenge) and 4 Weekly Meal Plans:

P.S. Make sure you pin this post so you can come back throughout the month!!!

P.S.S. All of my Whole 30 Recipes category…Enjoy!!

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  1. I’m so proud of you for taking the Whole30 leap! I did a modified version of it in September, and had some success with it, but as a fellow sugar addict, there were some rough monents.
    You’re going to rock this!

  2. Holy cow- this one is rough. If I didn’t have 4 other people in this house that would complain & throw me off track I’d probably give it a go. But even trying to stick to points is hard when they are eating snacks & saying “come on- just have a bite” They are all the devil – I swear it. 🙂

  3. Hi Lisa — I will be interested to see what recipes/plans you come up with. I have the Whole30 books but have never done it because most of the recipes I see on instagram take too many ingredients or are weird. I don’t like a lot of vegetables and don’t think I would be successful. It seems like avacado is served at every meal. Can not stand the texture. But I have a POWERFUL sugar dragon I would like to slay. I’ll stay tuned.

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