Wait. You can’t eat that on Whole30?

Over the past couple weeks, I’ve been trying to eat according to the Whole30 plan. For me, haphazardly embarking on the Whole30 has become a daily exercise in discovering how I’m not in fact in compliance with Whole30.

There were days I made straight up violations: eating peanut butter, soy sauce, bacon, salami, and drinking a probiotic drink (the last three having added sugars that are prohibited according to the plan).

I’ve violated the spirit of the Whole30 on a daily basis: drinking fruit smoothies that taste like milk shakes in the morning and devouring bowls of fruits, nuts, and almond milk that are acting as a substitute for the nightly granola snack I crave.

Interestingly, failing at Whole30 has made me want to do the Whole30. I love the idea of figuring out how different food groups affect my energy, mood, digestion, etc., and I understand now how a full out elimination and reintroduction would test that.

Ultimately, I’m looking to find a nutritional framework that’s stable for me. I’ve found that abstinence based plans work well because it’s easy to just say no to dairy, beans, grains, alcohol, etc. Sugar is another issue because that stuff is hidden everywhere!

It’s easy in some ways to categorically eliminate certain types of foods, and I love the results I’ve seen on these types of plans. But it also leaves me feeling like a jerk sometimes when everyone I’m with is eating cookies or pizza and I have to decline. This generally turns into a discussion of my nutritional plan and who wants to talk about diets while they’re eating cookies?

You see, I don’t want to hinder others enjoyment of cookies. And, ultimately, I want to be able to enjoy cookies too. I don’t want to be so restrictive that it becomes an obsession. But at the same time I struggle with moderation.

It’s Tuesday afternoon, and I want a cookie. Should I have a cookie? What’s behind my desire for a cookie? Will this cookie make me happy? Too many questions! I want my relationship with cookies to be easy, not complicated.

I don’t have the answers. But I do have an obligatory diet-related-blog-post photo of a fabulous salad I ate yesterday with fruit on the side:



  1. Interesting. I went on a very effective plan several years ago that limited sugar to 16 gms per day….it was amazing to find how much sugar is in so many foods. Many of the foods with less sugar, like pasta sauces, were very expensive…..in any case, this was a very good plan for healthy diet and eliminated a lot of my cravings for carbs.

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