Being on the Whole 30 is easy. Life after Whole 30 is what’s hard. For 30 days what you can and can’t eat is black and white. But when the 30 days is over there are no more rules holding you back.
So how do you learn not to fall back into your old habits of unhealthy food choices? The co-creator of Whole30, Melissa Hartwig teaches you exactly what you need to know for life after Whole 30. In her book Food Freedom Forever.
Life After Whole 30
Food Freedom Forever teaches you the steps on how to continue a healthy life after Whole 30. It begins with a reset. If you did a round of Whole30 you have already completed the reset.
From your round, you have learned how amazing you can feel and look by making healthy food choices. And through your reintroduction, you learn what food makes you feel less healthy.
Food Freedom is a 3 step plan:
- Food Freedom
- Repeat as Needed
Food Freedom doesn’t happen overnight. It starts with a reset. You first have to learn how less healthy food choices affect you. The purpose of a reset is to focus on your health. It’s not about losing weight.
The first step for the reset is to eliminate foods that may have a negative impact on your health. One way to cut out these foods is to do a round of Whole 30.
If you choose to follow Whole 30 here’s what to expect:
Eliminate for 30 Days
- Specific Additives
What to Eat
- Healthy Fats
In Food Freedom Forever you are also given other options for a reset if Whole 30 is too extreme for you. But if you want to achieve food freedom you do need to complete a reset. Because you need to learn how certain types of food affect you in less healthy ways.
How long should you stay on Whole30? Can you do the Whole30 for more than 30 days?
You can stay on Whole30 for as long as you want. After the 30 days, you can keep going but Hartwig recommends not going longer than 60 days.
Because Whole30 is to teach you how to make healthier food choices. You need to learn how less healthy food affects your body. You can’t figure that out is you stay on the Whole30.
Once you completed the reset the second step is to reintroduce the foods back into your diet. The foods you eliminated get reintroduced back one at a time to learn how they may affect you.
You bring back the foods you have eliminated from your diet for the last 30 days. Then you’ll spend the next 10 days or so reintroducing legumes, alcohol (if you want to), non-gluten grains, dairy, and gluten-containing grains.
Reintroduction is important to food freedom. Because it helps you learn what’s worth keeping in your diet and what’s not.
Deciding what you eat after Whole30 depends on you. What do you miss and what can you live without? Do you miss having a piece of toast with your breakfast? Do you need a scoop of beans with your fajitas?
How do those foods make you feel after you eat them? If having a piece of toast or a scoop of beans doesn’t affect the way you feel then go ahead and add them back into your diet.
Food Freedom is knowing when foods are worth it and when they are not. It’s being in control of what you eat and not letting food control you. And if you do decide a less than healthy food is worth it than you don’t feel guilty about eating it.
Another thing you need to realize is that Whole 30 and Food Freedom are not diets. This program teaches you a new way to appreciate food.
Diets are designed to fail. Food Freedom gives you a plan to continue living this way for the rest of your life. It’s a plan to help you be successful at eating foods that make you feel good.
When you have achieved food freedom you’ll:
- Make conscious decisions to eat less healthy foods
- Eat only as much as you need to satisfy the experience
- Enjoy the moment without guilt or shame
- Then return to your healthy habits
So how do you know if a certain food or a particular drink is worth it? Well, is it a random Tuesday night and you feel like having a drink or a cookie for no particular reason except you can? If you can have that drink or cookie to satisfy your needs and not feel guilty about it then go ahead.
After you savor the moment go back to your healthy eating habits. This is food freedom. But if that drink or that cookie is going to lead to more unhealthy choices than you need to ask yourself if it’s worth it.
Repeat as Needed
If you find yourself falling back to your old ways repeat the reset. Other diet programs make you think after you finish the program your cravings will be gone. That your unhealthy habits will be gone forever.
But, that’s not true. It’s taken you years to form your eating habits and you can’t erase that in a short amount of time. Whole 30 is not a miracle diet that can erase a lifetime of unhealthy eating habits in 30 days.
You will slip up. And may find your way back to your bad habits. But that’s OK because when you feel yourself slipping away too far repeat your reset.
Life After Whole30 – Food Freedom
Life after Whole 30 is learning how to achieve Food Freedom. Food Freedom is about choosing what to eat without feeling guilty. And knowing when you’re going too far off the deep end.
If you find yourself straying too far. Make the decision to go back to the healthy eating habits you learned through Whole 30.
Whole 30 is much more than a 30-day elimination diet, its the beginning of a transformation. That transformation leads you to Food Freedom.
I have completed five rounds of Whole 30. My first round was in April 2017. I feel great while I’m on the program. But eventually I fall back to my old ways. I haven’t achieved food freedom yet. However, every time I do a round of Whole 30 I know I get closer.
What is life after Whole 30 like for you? Let me know in the comments:)
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