“This will change your life” is the claim from the Whole30 website. Really?
“… testimonials from thousands of Whole30 participants document the improvement or “cure” of any number of lifestyle-related diseases and conditions (and) we’ve. read some stories that can only be described as miracles”
The website claims “cures” from
high blood pressure • high cholesterol • type 1 diabetes • type 2 diabetes • asthma • allergies • sinus infections • hives • skin conditions • endometriosis • PCOS • infertility • migraines • depression • bipolar disorder • heartburn • GERD • arthritis • joint pain • ADD • thyroid dysfunction • Lyme disease • fibromyalgia • chronic fatigue • lupus • leaky gut syndrome • Crohn’s • IBS • Celiac disease • diverticulitis • ulcerative colitis
Ok, sorry, but I just gotta say it: Are you frickin’ kidding me? The ONLY WAY people are having success from this diet is if they have a horrible diet to begin with or if they have some allergen or intolerance to certain foods and this is the exception and not the rule.
So here’s my list of 5 reasons you should be wary of the Whole30 plan:
- It’s Claims Are Unfounded. Let’s be clear: I’m the fun guy. I’m the one that gets creative with peoples’ exercise and food plans so that you can live a happy, healthy life with long-term results. But I’m also grounded in science. Our bodies are all the same both chemically and biomecanically. From this I extrapolate predictable outcomes from a set of scientific assumptions and marry those with your psychological and social patterns. But where are the scientific claims? They could have at least tried to pull some research that could support their claims. But none is to be found.
- It’s Not A Weight Loss Plan. While some people can lose weight from the Whole30 diet, it is not necessarily from the foods being eliminated. It’s likely the new habit of creating better eating patterns. It’s no surprise that you’ll start eating better if you start paying better attention to what you put into your mouth. Meal prepping and logging food are both simple ways to make you more mindful of your eating. But, with the exception of eliminating sugar and alcohol, there’s no weight loss benefit to the program. Oh, and eliminating sugar and alcohol is NOT a guarantee of weight loss.
- It’s Random. Any study that changes too many variables is inherently flawed. If you eliminate dairy, legumes, sugar, alcohol and more from your diet, then how can you know which is a potential irritant? Answer: You can’t! Where’s the value in that?
- It’s Unsustainable. Most people will not stick to a restrictive diet for any length of time. There comes a point when we all want to have a treat that’s not on our diet. Maybe it’s a glass of wine or a simple Christmas cookie. The problem with restrictive diets is they don’t allow for human nature. While we are creatures of habit we are also creatures of curiosity. We like to explore. To venture out. More often than not, when we drift from a restrictive diet the results are often cataclysmic. We think “screw it” and go all out having not just one cookie, but many! Or it leads us adrift and makes us realize that we enjoy treats that are not on the menu of our dusty old diet plan. We then meander off over time and fall back into no diet plan at all.
- It’s A Cult, No Wait, It’s A Business. Have you noticed the folks at Whole30 are encouraging people to become Whole30 certified “coaches?” Who’s certifying them? Oh, right, the folks at Whole30. What are their credentials for certifying anyone worth their salt? I hate that word in today’s vernacular, by the way. Everyone claims to be a coach with one hack certification or another. Truth is there are only a few worthy certifications or licensing for legitimate coaches in categories from health and wellness to career coaching. It’s akin to interviewing a surgeon who graduated top of their class from NYU vs someone who watched all seven seasons of Grey’s Anatomy. No offense to Ellen Pompeo.
You’re also forced to build a social media community so you do all their advertising, marketing and community building. Dieters are coerced into purchasing all of the Whole30 materials ranging from books and recipes to cookware and food.
I will admit that from a business perspective it’s brilliant. They’ve certainly put their time and money onto the program and it’s a pretty comprehensive ecosystem. BUT, that still doesn’t make it a good diet. Just a good money making machine for the owners.
So, if you’re the person who likes to try new diets just they’re fun and part of discovery, then you’ll probably give Whole30 a shot. But, if you’re someone looking for a “miracle” then you better look elsewhere.
About Tony and Out Run Your Fork:
I’ve been involved in healthy living almost my entire life. It’s not just about personal training or nutrition. It’s not just about getting ripped or 6 pack abs. It’s not just about weight loss programs or diets. It’s about YOU.
At Out Run Your Fork we make fitness fun! Our Personal Training and Nutritional Programming are designed with YOU in mind. We cater to each individual and custom tailor every program to fit your specific needs. Whether it’s overcoming an injury, lowering your cholesterol or looking for a kick-butt workout we’ve got you covered!
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