Category Archives: Diet Trends

Whole30 Meal Plan: Rules And Tips To A Successful 30 Days On The Whole30 Plan

June 27th, 2019

Whole30 Meal Plan: Rules And Tips To A Successful 20 Days On The Whole30 Plan

The Whole30 diet is a diet created for healthy people, by healthy people. These individuals once found themselves exercising with no results. They were eating healthy but still had no energy and had other skin, digestive, and allergy issues as well. Now with the Whole30 diet they can truly eat healthy and see the results they deserve.

inflammatory foodsSome healthy foods such as grains, dairy, and legumes can have negative impacts on the body. The only way to actually get the results you want from your diet is by ridding your body of these foods completely. In 30 days, this meal plan will help you to eliminate all the blood-sugar disrupting, gut-damaging, inflammatory food groups from your body. After removing these foods from your diet your body can heal and recover from their various side effects. This helps individuals reset their bodies and reset their lives, and change their relationship with food completely.

How Does It Work?

One of the characteristics of the Whole30 diet that you won’t find with many other diets is you still get to eat food – real food. Keep in mind that the fewer ingredients the better. Or if a food has no additional ingredients because it is a whole food, add that to the keep pile. Individuals follow the rules of the Whole30 diet for 30 days. Their bodies, mindsets, and their relationship with food will be completely transformed after those 30 days.

Who Developed It And Why?

Co-founder Melisa Hartwig developed the Whole30 meal plan. The goal was to change individuals’ lives, specifically by changing the way they think about food. The Whole30 diet changes your tastebuds, cravings, and overall relationship with food. Thirty days on the diet rewires your mouth and your mindset to eat whole and healthy, permanently. Hartwig herself tried the diet, as well as millions of others. They can say with confidence that the Whole30 diet has permanent, life-changing effects.

What Results Should You Expect?

First and foremost, you should expect to eat good food every day, for 30 days. If you are strict to the diet for 30 days, without one bite of pizza, or lick of ice cream, the changes are permanent. You won’t face another uncontrollable craving or have another inner battle about which meal tastes better. Your tastebuds will transform over the course of 30 days.

whole foodsYou should not, however, expect to step on the scale or track body measurements every day. The main focus of the Whole30 plan is not weight loss, though weight loss will most likely occur. Rather, it is about increasing healthy eating habits and decreasing the amount of body fat a person gains. The Whole30 plan recommends taking your body weight before starting the program and after 30 days to see the overall impact eating Whole30 has on the body.

Foods To Avoid

At its foundation, the Whole30 program is an elimination diet. This means it is all about the foods individuals avoid. The diet is not about eating all organic, or local, or pasteurized, it is simply about avoiding the bad stuff – even if you didn’t know it was bad. These are the most important foods to avoid for 30 days.

  • Sugar, real or artificial: This includes maple syrup, honey, agave nectar, coconut sugar, date syrup, stevia, Splenda, Equal, NutraSweet, xylitol, etc. It is important to read labels because sugar may be in products in ways you don’t immediately recognize.
  • Alcohol: This means any alcohol, including cooking wine and other cooking alcohols. In addition, you should avoid tobacco.
  • Grains: This means all grains including wheat, rye, barley, oats, corn, rice, millet, bulgur, sorghum, sprouted grains, and all gluten-free pseudo-cereals like quinoa, amaranth, and buckwheat. You should also avoid adding wheat, corn, and rice into foods in the form of bran, germ, starch, and so on. If you are unsure, read the label.
  • Legumes: Also known as beans, you should avoid black, red, pinto, navy, white, kidney, lima, fava, peas, chickpeas, lentils, and peanuts. That means peanut butter too. This rule also includes all forms of soy – soy sauce, miso, tofu, tempeh, edamame, and any way that that soy may have snuck into prepared food as an ingredient (like lecithin).
  • Dairy: If it comes from a cow, don’t eat/drink it – or if it comes from a goat or sheep either. This includes milk products, like milk, cream, cheese, kefir, yogurt, sour cream, ice cream, or frozen yogurt.
  • Carrageenan, MSG, or sulfites: When these ingredients appear in any form on the label of processed foods or beverages, it is not acceptable for the Whole30.
  • Baked goods, junk food, or treats: This rule can be tricky. Some specific foods that fall under this rule include: pancakes, waffles, bread, tortillas, biscuits, muffins, cupcakes, cookies, brownies, pizza crust, alternative flour pastas, cereal, or ice cream. Avoid commercially-prepared chips (potato, tortilla, plantain, etc.) and french fries as well. The issue with buying or baking these treats, even with compliant ingredients, is they totally miss the point of Whole30. In the end even a pancake made with coconut flour will compromise your life-changing eating habits. A good rule of thumb is ‘when in doubt, leave it out.’

The Exceptions

Of course, like any good diet, there are exceptions. These foods are acceptable in the Whole30 program, even if other diets have identified them as ‘unhealthy.’

  • Ghee or clarified butter: Ghee is the only source of dairy you’ll get with Whole30. This does not include plain old butter, which has milk proteins that could impact the results of your program.
  • Fruit juice: If products or recipes include fruit juice as a stand-alone ingredient or natural sweetener, this is fine for the purposes of the Whole30.
  • Certain legumes: Maybe not all legumes are bad for you, especially ones that are green and have more pod than bean. Whole30 allows green beans, sugar snap peas, and snow peas.
  • Vinegar: Whole30 program allows almost all forms of vinegar, including white, red wine, balsamic, apple cider, and rice. However, you should avoid malt vinegar which, contains gluten.
  • Coconut aminos: All brands of coconut aminos are acceptable. This includes products with the words “coconut nectar” or “coconut syrup” in their ingredient list.
  • Salt: All iodized table salt contains sugar, which makes it difficult to stick to the no sugar rule. Since most restaurants and pre-packaged foods contain salt, this is the exception to the no sugar rule.

All it takes is 30 days. At first glance, these lists may seem like a significant change, but in the end, it’s what’s good for you.

Tough Love And Mantra Of The Whole30 Program

Black Coffee

For individuals stepping into the Whole30 program, they may not be able to speak with Hartwig herself, but this is her and the Whole30 program mantra: “This is not hard. Don’t you dare tell us this is hard. Quitting heroin is hard. Beating cancer is hard. Drinking your coffee black. Is. Not. Hard.” This tough love stance is what it takes to form new habits and change a life. Anyone can do it.

A Typical Day Of Eating On The Whole30 Diet

Eating on the Whole30 Diet is more enjoyable than most people think. A typical day of eating may include one or two Whole30 meal plans. With the Plan A meal, every recipe is 100 percent compliant, with a wide variety of different fat, protein, and carbohydrate sources to choose from. You will eat Plan B meals after your initial 30 days is up. You will continue eating real, nutrient dense foods but begin experimenting with reintroducing some foods during this time period.

Each meal plan has decadent meal options, here’s what a typical day of eating the Whole30 diet may include:


  • (Plan A) Green Shakshuka with shaved Brussels sprouts
  • (Plan B) Smoked Salmon Breakfast Stacks, Skillet Roasted Breakfast Veggies, One Pan Chicken Apple Squash, Brussels, Bacon, & Chicken Skillet with Ranch
  • Paleo Pizza Potato Skins


  • (Plan A) Vegan Butternut Squash Soup
  • (Plan B) Cauliflower Rice Meatballs, Creamy Coconut Milk Meatballs, Halibut Nicosia Salad, Mango Chicken with Cauliflower Rice, Sweet Potato Noodles with Beef Bolognese


  • (Plan A) Crispy to the Root Chicken Thighs
  • (Plan B) Paleo Sloppy Joes, Roasted Tomatoes and Shrimp with Zucchini Noodles, Lamb Burgers with Rosemary Pesto Sauce, Easy Whole30 Chili

Meal Prep

On the Whole30 diet, being successful can mean the difference between being prepared or not. A well-written shopping list and preparing food for the third week are two helpful tips for staying on track. A Whole30 shopping list should contain proteins, veggies, pantry staples, nuts, seeds, and oils. When it comes to preparing food it is best to write out the menu for each meal, each day. These simple preparation tips make failure seem impossible.


Another way to succeed on the Whole30 diet is with all the support possible. As with any diet or exercise system, the buddy system makes the hardest goals seem attainable. With the Whole30 diet, try getting friends and family members on board. This diet is beneficial for everyone, not just those who want to diet and lose weight.

The Whole30 is about improving the entire lifestyle to live a more healthful life, everyone needs a little of that. With a few diet buddies on board, you can share meal plans and share success stories. Even without buddies on board, share success stories across social media, with others, spread the word about accomplishments and it helps make the journey seem shorter and more worthwhile.

Whole30 Diet Yes No


Whole30 Vs. Paleo

Many individuals have never heard of the Whole30 diet, but they have heard of Paleo. The two diets are very similar, but there are several important differences. The idea behind the Paleo diet is to eat as our Paleolithic ancestors once did. This includes eating plant-based meals with quality proteins and fats.

The Whole30 diet is stricter and is an elimination diet. The idea is to reboot the body and after the 30 days, mindfully add certain foods back in. This marks yet another difference between Paleo and Whole30; Paleo is a long-term diet, Whole30 is not. Whole30 is only for 30 days, with the intention that after the body will only seek and prefer certain foods. Lastly, sugar plays an important role in each diet; in one you can have sugar, in the other you cannot. For example, cinnamon almonds are okay on the Paleo diet, but not for Whole30.

What To Do When The 30 Days Are Over

After the 30 days are over, the reintroduction phase begins. The reintroduction portion of the Whole30 is critical to the learning experience. Within ten days, individuals will slowly, carefully, and systematically reintroduce some of the off-plan foods they were excluding. The idea is to evaluate how they make each individual feel in the context of a healthier relationship with food, metabolism, digestive tract, and the immune system.

Today diets and individualized meal plans are everywhere. Some advertise as being fast, cheap, easy, and prove the best results. The Whole30 diet is wholesome. There are no gimmicks, no subscriptions, the purpose is to change eating habits permanently, not to make money. If you feel that the Whole30 diet is right for you, learn more about individualized meal plans.


4 Healthy Food Trends You’ll Be Seeing Everywhere in 2019

March 8th, 2019

4 Healthy Food Trends You'll Be Seeing Everywhere in 2019

Every year new fad diets and fat-burning techniques gain popularity, but more often than not fizzle out very quickly. The next trend invariably takes its place or dieters notice adverse effects that can come with trendy but unhealthy diets. This year, keep an eye out for the following four healthy food trends that can be positively life-altering. By making a few easy changes to your dietary routine, you can experience surprising results beyond weight loss.

Why Are These Trends Valuable?

The beginning of a new year typically encourages people to make important changes that set them up for success in the coming year. Gym memberships spike in January as many Americans decide to start working out, but this trend often loses steam within a few weeks to a few months. This cycle starts again with a new round of New Year’s Resolutions the following year.

What many people fail to realize is that exercise is only one part of the process in losing weight and staying healthy. Proper diet is much more important. In fact, it’s possible to lose weight and become healthier just by changing eating habits, with little to no need to work out extensively. A few dietary changes and light exercise can lead to tremendous results; all it takes is discipline.

Alternatives to Dairy Milk

Alternatives to Dairy Milk Dairy milk alternatives like soymilk, almond milk, and oat milk are some of the most popular choices for people who struggle with lactose intolerance. But these dairy alternatives also offer some unique health benefits over regular dairy milk. Most alternative milks like oat milk and almond milk come fortified with calcium and vitamin D, the essential nutrients most people absorb by drinking dairy products.

Alternative milks can be a great option, even for those individuals who do not struggle with lactose intolerance. An unsweetened and fortified plant-based milk can offer better vitamin density and more well-rounded nutrition than regular dairy milk, with only has a fraction of the fat. These alternative milks only taste slightly different than dairy milk, and there are sweetened, unsweetened, and even flavored varieties.

More Plant-Based Options

The vegetarian and vegan lifestyles may not be for everyone, and many Americans enjoy eating meat on a regular basis. However, some significant health issues arise with overconsumption of red meat and other animal proteins. Many Americans do not eat enough fruits and vegetables on a regular basis, and plant-based alternatives to foods like bread, tortillas, and even macaroni and cheese are helping people get their daily servings of fruits and veggies.

Some examples to look for in your local grocery store include:

  • Plant-based alternatives to potato chips, such as vegetable crisps, sweet potato or beet chips, and kale chips
  • Healthy snacks like roasted chickpeas instead of pretzels or other fatty snacks
  • Banana puree ice cream in lieu of fatty dairy-based ice cream
  • Shredded jackfruit instead of pulled pork; this odd fruit contains a high vitamin density and tastes exactly like pulled pork when prepared correctly
  • Infused breads, such as whole-grain breads baked with sun-dried tomatoes, beets, and other vegetables.

Food marketers have learned that labeling some foods as “vegetarian” or “vegan” does not appeal to most consumers. Americans who do not follow vegetarian or vegan lifestyles tend to automatically dismiss such foods as unappealing. About 50 percent of U.S. consumers report that these plant-based food products need to offer more variety and more appetizing flavor choices. Marketers have started to change the way they advertise these foods, hopefully encouraging some Americans to add plant-based foods and snacks into their daily routines.

Learning to Love Omega-3s

Omega-3 fatty acids are one of the most important nutrients, but the typical American diet does not usually include the foods with the densest concentration of Omega-3 fatty acids. The best natural source of these vital nutrients is fish, and most Americans do not eat fish as part of their regular diets.

Luckily, fish food product manufacturers have started offering more accessible and varied canned and pouched options, such as tuna lunch kits that come with seasonings and whole grain crackers and even infused salmon. Anyone thinking of incorporating fresh fish into his or her diet should take time to research a few recipes and try to learn new ways to prepare fish in appetizing ways. If fish is not for you, there are some plant-based food options rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, such as:

  • Some vegetable oils like canola oil, soybean oil, walnut oil, and flaxseed oil
  • Hemp hearts and ground flaxseed; easy additions to yogurt, oatmeal, and even salads
  • Ground flaxseed as a substitute for butter when cooking
  • Walnuts
  • Edamame

Plenty of dietary supplements contain Omega-3 fatty acids, but beware: The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reports that on average, an individual should consume no more than three grams of Omega-3 fatty acids per day. Any more may result in gastrointestinal discomfort or even bleeding in people who take anticoagulants for certain medical conditions.

Foods Infused with Cannabis

Cannabis laws have changed dramatically throughout the United States in the last decade, with most states having legalized medical marijuana and even recreational marijuana for adults in some. Other states are less liberal with their cannabis laws and restrict which cannabis-based substances are acceptable for sale and consumption. Cannabidiol (CBD) is one of the active compounds in cannabis that does not cause psychoactive effects but does offer relief from many types of pain.

Cannabis-infused foods aren’t solely for medical marijuana patients; CBD oil is a great health supplement for just about anyone. CBD can aid sleep, improve symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, and ease symptoms of anxiety. Most CBD-infused foods are gummies, candies, and sodas that may not be the healthiest options, but CBD-infused coffee could be a healthy addition to anyone’s morning routine.

These are just a few of the health trends gaining popularity right now. Ultimately, making better eating decisions is a personal choice. Consider these health trends and start thinking of ways to make positive changes in your diet that work for you.

Get a Personalized Diet with Maximum Benefits for 2019


Don’t give up yet! Why New Year Diet Resolutions Fall Flat After January?

January 21st, 2019

Don’t give up yet! Why New Year Diet Resolutions Fall Flat After January

Diet-related goals top the list of America’s most popular resolutions every year. Whether it’s losing weight, cutting out all sources of sugar, or toning up at the gym, many Americans resolve to lose weight, follow a healthier lifestyle, or otherwise make modifications to their diets. However, a 2017 Marist poll shows that a least 33% of these people’s resolutions will fall flat after January.

Discovering why we fail to adhere to new diet plans requires an understanding of the psychology of resolution-making itself. Find out why your New Year diet resolution might fail – and how you can make sustainable changes that last all year.

Why Do We Make New Year Resolutions?

New Year resolutions, as we know them today, began in ancient Rome after Julius Caesar established Janus as the first month of the year. A two-faced deity of doorways and arches, the New Year was symbolically an opportunity to look back into the previous year and forward into the coming months, and think about improvements in their conduct. While many of the first New Year’s resolutions had religious implications, we still equate the beginning of the year as an opportunity to make improvements.

Why Do Our Resolutions Fail?

Unfortunately, according to some experts, this is also the reason why so many resolutions fail. Three-hundred and sixty-five days is a long time – a period of time that makes it difficult to establish accountability or create resolutions that have sustainability. For example, saying “I’m going to lose weight and be healthier this year!” lacks the specificity and time frame required to achieve a goal.

Instead, many health experts favor a weekly goal approach – instead of one New Year’s resolution, take advantage of the natural 52 breaks in the year. This allows for more time for reflection and plenty of opportunities to make modifications to your lifestyle.

Your Resolutions Aren’t “Smart”

Grand, sweeping resolutions to alter your life’s course aren’t sustainable and make it more likely that your resolutions will fall flat in the first thirty days. To make changes that last, make your goal-setting SMART:

  • Specific – for example, instead of saying “I’m going to eat healthier this year,” try “I am going to incorporate more leafy greens into my diet.”
  • Measurable – now, take it a step further so you can track your success “ I will incorporate a leafy green into each dinner.”
  • Achievable – to begin, limit a goal to a certain meal instead of, “I am going to increase my vegetable consumption at every meal, every day.”
  • Relevant – keep your health goals in line with your other life efforts, whether that’s to lower your blood pressure, lose weight, or effectively manage chronic health conditions related to your current diet.
  • Time-Phased – this allows you to make modifications that keep you on track. To begin, “I am going to incorporate a leafy green vegetable into my dinners for one week.”

You Listen To Your Inner Critic

Why New Year Diet Resolutions Fall Flat After JanuaryYou might be surprised to learn that you can derail your health efforts based on your inner monologue. Mistakes are an inevitable part of the shaping process – it’s how we learn. The way you handle missteps could make the difference between a resolution diet fail and successfully making a behavior change. The following are examples of how your inner critic could be sabotaging you:

  • “I don’t know why I even try. This will never be a success.”
  • “I’m not getting the results I want. I should quit while I’m ahead.”
  • “Today is already a bust. I might as well keep cheating.”

Learning the power of positive self-talk is an art, but it’s well worth the effort. A simple rephrasing of mistakes can lead to marked changes in outcomes: “I enjoyed that piece of cake. It will feel good to have a leafy green vegetable with dinner later.”

You Try It All On Your Own

Behavior change is a difficult thing to accomplish – in fact, it’s in its own branch of study. We continually learn about the best way to make sustainable life changes. Attempting to make sweeping alterations to your diet on your own can be a recipe for failure. In order to create diets that work all year, it’s best to refer to outside help. An evidence-based approach to diet and healthy eating can help you stay on track and make changes that make you feel good about yourself – inside and out!

Dietary Rehab stays at the forefront of health knowledge and delivers counseling initiatives that help you achieve your New Year’s resolutions. Whether you want to make changes to manage chronic health conditions, lose weight, or even enhance athletic performance, we can help. Talk to us about our services and learn more about how we can help you achieve your New Year’s resolutions – or better yet, turn them into lifelong changes.


Understanding The Risks Of Fad Diets

January 10th, 2019

The Good, Bad, And Scary Fad Diets We All Fall For

Medicine and dietary science have evolved tremendously over the past century. However, some of the worst diets in history gained traction due to misconceptions about human biology, consumerism, and general misinformation. Looking back at some of the scary fad diets that have taken root in recent history allows us to appreciate how far medical science has advanced, helping us learn from the mistakes of previous generations.

The Evolution Of Dieting

In the early 1900s, medical science was fairly limited. Many Americans faced a relatively low life expectancy.  Recovery after injuries and illnesses was difficult then compared to what we can easily treat today. Additionally, the general public was primarily blue-collar workers in rural or small urban areas that relied upon the major news networks to keep them informed about the latest health news.  Advertising also became a major industry in the early 1900s as communication technology improved. Some companies started using celebrities to advertise their products and encourage fad diets that had disastrous health consequences for many Americans.

Fad Diets In American History

Understanding The Risks Of Fad DietsIn 1925, cigarette company Lucky Strike started a new campaign with the slogan “Reach for a Lucky instead of a sweet!” This ad aimed to tout nicotine’s appetite-suppressing properties as a way to slim down. During this time, medical researchers still believed that cigarettes offered health benefits and had not linked cigarette smoking to lung cancer. Lucky Strike essentially promoted lung disease as an alternative to gaining weight, and the public was none the wiser.

The birth of “the Hollywood Diet” occurred in the 1930s, a diet that called for eating low-calorie grapefruit with every meal. Stars reported staying in shape for the big screen thanks to the grapefruit-centric diet but largely continued many other negative practices like excessive alcohol consumption and smoking.

In the 1950s, the cabbage soup diet promised ten to fifteen pounds of weight loss in a single week by sticking to a very restricted diet and eating cabbage soup every day. The 1950s also saw one of the most shocking dietary techniques: opera singer Maria Callas lost 65 pounds thanks to a tapeworm after swallowing a pill packed with parasites.

The year of 1963 saw the founding of Weight Watchers, one of the most popular dieting programs in America that still exists today. The Weight Watchers program revolves around assigning “points” to different foods and sticking within a certain point range per day to lose weight. Weight Watchers is essentially a structured form of portion control.

In 1975, the next big Hollywood diet took root: the Cookie Diet promised weight loss by eating cookies baked with a special blend of amino acids, and many stars touted the plan as a resounding success. A few years later in 1977, Slim Fast hit store shelves for the first time and it continues to be one of the most popular meal replacement products to date.

By 1979, the first major diet pill, Dexatrim, hit American store shelves. This diet pill contained phenylpropanolamine, a compound later discovered in 2000 to increase stroke risk leading to Dexatrim’s formula alteration. In 1985, Harvey and Marilyn Diamond developed their Fit for Life diet plan that prohibited eating protein and complex carbohydrates in the same meal.

In 1992, Robert C. Atkins, M.D. published his Atkins Diet, a diet plan that focused on high protein and low carbohydrate intake that grew immensely popular across the United States. In 1994, new legislation through the Guide to Nutrition Labeling and Education Act required food manufacturers to list all of their ingredients and nutritional information on all food packaging. In 1995, the Zone Diet became the next big Hollywood craze that required eating specific portions of different types of foods. 2003 saw the next iteration of the Atkins Diet in the form of the South Beach Diet, a protein-rich and low-carb diet that was a bit less restrictive than the Atkins Diet.

Success Stories Throughout The Years

The best diets through the years involve portion control; overeating is one of the most common causes of extra weight and obesity. Most people eat too much in a single sitting. Weight Watchers is arguably one of the best diet plans and has more than 50 years of success stories behind it. Singer Jennifer Hudson shocked fans after showing her 80-pound loss thanks to Weight Watchers.

Despite the fact that portion control diets like Weight Watchers have been tremendously successful, one of the most important aspects of nutrition that many Americans overlook is the concept of eating for your age, or adapting your diet as you grow and your body changes.

Eating An Age-Appropriate Diet

During your 20s, it is vital to eat foods rich in iron, calcium, potassium, and folate that encourage healthy adult development and a strong immune response. In your 30s, choline and monounsaturated fats are important for maintaining healthy metabolism and high energy levels. In your 40s, protein and vitamins A and C are crucial to protect your muscle mass and bone density and help ease joints that start to ache. However, there is no one-size-fits-all diet plan for everyone; every person has unique medical concerns that require individual solutions.

In addition to eating for your age, it is also important to develop healthy habits outside of diet. This means incorporating a reasonable amount of exercise into your daily routine and avoiding bad habits like excessive alcohol consumption and smoking.  Ultimately, the best diet is one uniquely tailored to your individual health concerns and medical risks.

Dietary Rehab Can Help with Your Nutritional Efforts

If you have tried fad diets in the past and have been unsuccessful or failed at portion control and cutting out bad foods, sometimes a professional hand can offer the push needed to develop the perfect diet plan that offers balanced nutrition. Dietary Rehab is a top notch resource for anyone in need of nutrition advice, diet planning, and individualized wellness tips for specific risk factors and medical conditions. Visit our consulting page to learn more about the services available from Dietary Rehab and start developing your wellness goals today.