Are you considering embarking on the Whole30 journey this year? Do you want to know the things you can eat and those you cannot before you start this journey? The Whole30 program has been a blessing to many over the years, as it provides many physical, health, and mental benefits.
Nevertheless, before you start the Whole30 program, you need to know what your diet for the next 30 days would look like. You need to know the rules of the program, which are basically the food groups you need to eliminate and those you can eat.
In this article, we will be listing the Whole30 approved foods that you can eat while on this great journey. The rules of this program are pretty fast and hard, but knowing what you are up against will give you an edge and see you through the 30 days without any issues.
Whole 30 Eliminates Trigger Foods Temporarily
The essence of this program is not to punish you for your bad eating habit or your poor food choices. The Whole30 program does not even classify the eliminated foods as inherently bad. Instead, this program helps you to identify some trigger foods that might not be good for you and eliminate them from your diet.
For instance, that your tummy issues might be caused by cheese. The culprit behind your runny nose might just be soy. The aim of the program is to find out how your body reacts to a certain food, by eliminating them for 30 days and reintroducing them gradually. If after reintroducing any food group and it still works for you, great.
However, if your body reacts to any food you reintroduce after the 30 days, it is a clear sign that it is not good for your body. Hence, the Whole 30 program is not designed to punish you but to help redefine your diet and make you consume only foods that are healthy and acceptable to your body.
Whole30-Approved List: Whole 30 Food You Can Eat
Here is a comprehensive Whole30 food list that you can consume while on this journey:
When it comes to the Whole 30 diet food list, you can have as many vegetables as you want. Vegetables are nutrient-dense, and you can never have too much of them. You should consume tons of colorful vegetables while on this program.
Vegetables also come in handy in swapping out other foods such as grains. If you usually eat meatballs and spaghetti over a big bowl of pasta, you should consider replacing the pasta with spiralized vegetables, sautéed greens, or roasted vegetables.
When it comes to fruits, you have a wide range of options. Many fruits are allowed in the Whole30 program. However, you should learn to keep it at a minimum. Avoid the temptation of replacing your sugar cravings with fruits.
You should also go for antioxidant, glycemic-rich fruits such as cherries, citrus, berries, and more. To help prevent an increase in your blood sugar, you should pair fruits with other foods containing protein or fat.
Seafood, Meat, Eggs, and Poultry
The Whole30 program is a big fan of protein. This means you can consume a wide variety of seafood, meat, eggs, and poultry. This program encourages people to get the right amount of high-quality protein, as your body needs plenty of it.
With the right amount of protein, you will remain satisfied and full for a long time. You should always opt for organic, pasture-raised, grass-fed animal products. If you are a seafood lover, you should always opt for wild-caught seafood when possible.
Your Whole 30 foods will not be complete without having healthy, natural fats on the list. Fat is very important in the body, but you want to make sure you consume only healthy and natural fat. Fat makes most processes in the body go smoothly and it also enhances the tastes of food.
Some of the healthy fats you can take while on this program include olive oil, ghee, coconut oil, beef tallow, avocado oil, duck fat, and lard. You should stay away from unhealthy fat sources for these 30 days.
Seeds and Nuts
The beautiful thing about this Whole30 program is that it still has many great foods for you after eliminating a bunch of food groups. This program allows for certain seeds and nuts, but you have to keep them in moderation.
You can use seeds and nuts to add flavor and texture to savory foods or as salad toppings. Seeds and nuts can also serve as emergency snacks, and you can add them to other small pieces of fruits. They offer a wide range of nutritional benefits, and you should take them often but moderately.
You can still take your regular coffee while on the Whole30 program, but you have to limit your consumption. You can take black coffee alone or mix it with Whole30-compliant creamers. You should avoid sugars and sweeteners.
Certain Pantry Staples
Fortunately, there are many Whole30-friendly pantry staples on the market today. Some of the pantry staples allowed in this program include spices, olives, coconut aminos, mustard, mayonnaise, seed and nut flours, seasonings, and vinegar.
The Whole30 program does not strictly prohibit all legumes. Some legumes made it to the Whole 30 diet food list. Some of the Whole30-approved legumes include great beans and most peas such as snow peas, split peas, yellow peas, green peas, and sugar snap peas.
Guar gum is also accepted in this program. It is a popular, acceptable thickener, and you can find it mostly in canned coconut milk.
There is also room for 100 percent yellow or green pea protein in the list of Whole30 approved foods. Many functional medicine providers use pea protein because it is very gentle. It is also great for people with sensitivity, allergies, and intolerances. They also consider it a hypoallergenic source of protein.
Nevertheless, some vegan protein blends including other grains such as rice or/and contain sugar alcohol, added sugar, and artificial sweeteners. If the pea protein contains non-Whole30-compliant ingredients, you should knock it off the list.
Larabars (Most but Not All)
Most varieties of Larabars are accepted during this program, but not all of them. Hence, you should read the label before buying. The Peanut Butter and Jelly bar is not accepted because it contains peanuts, which is not on the Whole30 food list. If you are an athlete, you can use Larabars as fuel during endurance training. They can also serve as emergency snacks. What you should avoid doing is using them to satisfy your sugar cravings.
Before August 2014, the official rules of the Whole30 program did not include potatoes as one of the accepted foods. In August 2014, the rules were changed to accommodate all types of potatoes, including red, white, purple, Yukon gold, yams, sweet potatoes, baby, fingerlings, and more.
Since all types of potatoes are allowed, you can do whatever you want with them. You can bake, pan-fry, boil, roast, steam, microwave, and grill them if you want. However, you should steer clear of restaurant French fries and store-bought potato chips.
Sunflower/safflower oil is also allowed, even though vegetables are not the most nutritious options. If vegetable oils are ruled out of the program completely, you would not be able to eat any meal outside your kitchen because many restaurants use them. High oleic sunflower or safflower oil tends to be better because they have a better fat profile that is similar to that of extra-virgin olive oil. They are also an acceptable source of fat for this program.
Since parmesans are not allowed, nutritional yeasts can serve as a great substitute. You can drizzle it over your chili or your spaghetti squash and meatballs.
Apparently, this program does not cater to what you eat only but what you drink as well. While embarking on this journey, there are certain types of drinks you need to stay away from. Fortunately, there are many tasty and nutritionally beneficial beverages that you can enjoy while running this race. Some of the Whole30-compliant drinks you can have include:
- Tea: The Whole30 program allows for a wide variety of tea. The program allows herbal, white, black, and green tea. However, your tea has to be free from added sugar, sweeteners, and other ingredients that are compliant with the program.
- Fruit Juice: Fruit juice would be one of your best buddies in this program. You can take different types of fresh fruit juice alone and during meals. However, you should lean to moderate and take them in small amounts.
- Coconut Water: If you have access to 100 percent pure coconut water, you can take it while on this program. You should avoid coconut water with added sugars or other non-compliant ingredients.
- Club Soda: Club soda is also allowed in this program, but you should take it in small amounts.
- Seed and Nut Milk: Seeds and nuts are highly nutritional, and they provide a wide range of health benefits. You can have seed and nut milk if all the ingredients used to make them are Whole30-compliant. You can also decide to make your own seed and nut milk at home.
- Vegetable Juice: It is not recommended to replace meals with fresh-pressed juices or go crazy about them. Nevertheless, you should minimize and moderate your consumption. Vegetable juice provides many great benefits, and it can serve as a tasty mocktail when you mix them with some slices of citrus and sparkling water.
- Sugar-Free Coconut Milk Yogurt: Some coconut milk yogurts are Whole30-compliant, not all. This means you have to read the label of the product to know if it is good for consumption. You should avoid the products with added sugar and opt for plain versions. The product you choose should have natural sources of probiotics. However, you should not convert it to a breakfast bowl with shredded coconut, dried fruit, and cacao nibs.
- Kombucha: Kombucha is one of the numerous accepted Whole30 approved drinks. However, you can only take products without added sugar.
- Smoothies: Smoothies are allowed in this program, but they are not encouraged. Smoothies tend to contain tons of sugar from fruits, so we recommend that you moderate your smoothie consumption. You should only take smoothies that are made with Whole30-compliant ingredients, as they would provide your body with all the added nutrition it needs.
- Water Kefir: Water Kefir is also allowed in this program. We highly recommend you make it by yourself so you can avoid added sugar. If you must purchase it in a store, you should opt for those whose list of ingredients does not contain added sugar.
Tips for a Successful Whole30 Program
There is more to the Whole30 program than knowing what to eat and what not to eat. There are certain things you need to know and do to finish the program successfully, some of which include:
- Prepare Ahead: The first thing you need to do is to prepare yourself ahead of the program. Get a list of all the foods you can eat and the ones you should avoid. You should also get a list of some delicious recipes you can enjoy while on the program. If possible, map out your meals for the entire week before it begins. Do that for every week of the program.
- Eliminate Every Temptation: You should get rid of every temptation – non-compliant foods and drinks.
- Drink Plenty of Tea and Water: You should make drinking water a habit. Whenever you are craving snacks, especially non-compliant snacks, you should brew up some green or herbal tea.
- Ride Along with Someone: One of the best ways to embark on this journey is to ride along with someone. Do it with a family member or a friend.
The Whole30 journey begins with knowing what you can eat and what you ought to avoid. Knowing the Whole30 approved foods will help you to know what you are signing up for. With the Whole30 food list above, you can make a wide range of meals and delicacies to satisfy your taste buds for 30 days.