Review: It Starts with Food: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways

It Starts with Food: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways
It Starts with Food: Discover the Whole30 and Change Your Life in Unexpected Ways by Dallas Hartwig

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is packed full of information and honestly, it was too much information for me to fact check. I didn’t take it as gospel because it’s obvious that it’s a biased opinion, but it did get me to rethink what I’m eating and how it affects me in mind and body. That’s the real point of the book anyway.

The book gets scientific, which I like and it’s organized well with diagrams, charts and recipes thrown into the mix. There are even some color photos of some delicious healthy meals.

The Whole30 program sounds extreme since you can’t consume sugar, dairy, grains or legumes for up to 40 days (10 days is part of the reintroduction phase), but it’s only for 40 days. It’s not a permanent lifestyle change; it’s a nutritional reset. I personally would love to do a reset. I was eating very clean for a while and feeling great, but then I fell off the wagon as they say and now I physically and emotionally feel like crap. I’m tired a lot and I have more mood swings than I ever did while eating clean. I’m tired of feeling blah, so I’m hoping this program will help me get back on track.

By the way, if you decide to try the program, be prepared to hear a lot of negativity from the people around you. People will try to talk you out of it and they’ll give you a thousand reasons why they’re right and you’re wrong, but decide for yourself. It’s your body.

Anyway, there are many great quotes in the book, but this is one of my favorites:

“Genetics loads the gun, but environment pulls the trigger.”

I love this quote because I want it to be true, but I keep wondering if this is just another nutrition “expert” who’s just playing the blame game a little differently. Or, maybe they’re trying to teach us accountability.

I’ve decided that I’m not going to get hung up on the minutiae of this book, but to focus on how I can use the program to help me feel better. I want to have full control over my health, both mentally and physically, and not feel like it’s some sort of health lottery. It’ll be a challenge giving up certain food groups for 40 days, but I’m up for it. I’m considering it a personal experiment to test the validity of their theories. No harm in that. I’ll still get all of my nutrients.

I’m just going to listen to my body. If my body starts asking me, “Hey, what the heck are you doing to me?” then I’ll just stop and resume my old eating habits. But there’s a good chance that I’ll feel incredibly awesome afterwards and realize that my so-called healthy eating wasn’t as healthy as I thought. Bon Appetit!

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