Why I Turned My Back on Cheese, Chocolate…and Lots of Other Good Stuff

from whole9life.com

all images courtesy whole9life.com

Brie, cheddar, feta, wensleydale with cranberries, smoked applewood. These days I’m dreaming in cheese (it’s starting to get weird – yesterday I woke up with a stomach ache).

Why? Because I started my first Whole30 last weekend and I’ve been dairy-free 7 days and counting.

It’s the longest cheese and I have been apart….sniff.

The Whole30

The Whole30 has been popular with the Paleo crowd for a while now, but I’ve always steered clear, thinking: “That’s way too hardcore for me. Nobody – but nobody – tells me I can’t eat cheese.”


thankfully I haven’t experienced too many of these (although ‘kill all the things’ has featured heavily)

For 30 days, you commit to eating cleaner than ever. It’s not supposed to be a deprivation diet but (in the words of the programme’s creators) “a short-term nutritional reset”.

In a nutshell, that means:

  • No grains (including quinoa)
  • No legumes
  • No dairy (not even butter! I wept!)
  • No sugars (even natural sweeteners like honey)
  • No alcohol

When I explained it to my mother, she laughed and said: “What’s left to eat?!”

Well, it turns out that nature has that sorted. Vegetables, fruits, nuts, meats, fish…that’s a lot, if you’re prepared to be adventurous.

hopefully! Just 23 more days to go *sigh*

hopefully! Just 23 more days to go *sigh*

And that’s one of the reasons I embarked on this challenge. To get me out of my food rut.

The other is to heal some hormonal issues. I’ve endometriosis and it can flare up if I’m not careful. The past few months I’ve been dealing with chronic pain, bloating and extreme fatigue.

And I’m the one who shouts from the rooftops about natural cures and nutrition! If I’m not prepared to walk the talk, I figure I should just pack up and get my butt out of the blogosphere already.

Why Should We Care?

Well, dear readers, I’ve a favour to ask. There’ll be no desserts on the blog until this thing is done, or anything with dairy in it.

Also, you might have to put up with one last Whole30 dedicated post in which I share my results (is that something you’d be interested in reading?)

this is my mantra

this is my mantra

Hopefully that’s ok. If not, let me know in the comments and I might test my willpower to its limits and make something sweet for you guys (hubs’ll eat it – he’s not Whole30-ing).

Also, if some of you could occasionally give me an online dig in the ribs to make sure I’m still on track, I’d really appreciate it.

Wish me luck!

If you’re interested in joining me, get the details on how to start your Whole30 here. I also highly recommend reading the testimonials from people who experienced benefits and relief from all manner of conditions such as Crohn’s Disease, PCOS, Diabetes and IBS. It’s incredibly inspiring.


36 thoughts on “Why I Turned My Back on Cheese, Chocolate…and Lots of Other Good Stuff

  1. You can do it! I follow the paleo template and only eat cheese on occasion (gluten-free pizza is hard to forgo! BTW I know an amazing crust recipe). Dietary resets like the Whole 30 are awesome, even if it’s difficult. I am a former dairy lover and now that I rarely ever eat it, when I do it leaves a weird aftertaste in my mouth that I don’t like (except if it’s on pizza…. ;-). For me, the sweet tooth is the hardest thing to give up! Grains and dairy are easy by comparison.

    Dried coconut flakes make a nice snack that I think would be Whole 30 approved. I like the Let’s DO Organic brand.

    You can do it!! 🙂

      • Just remember that part of the Whole30 is not giving into those cravings. If you are craving something sweet or sugary, even if you replace it with a nice healthy apple or a handful of coconut, you’re still sending the same message to your brain. You’re still giving into that craving instead of looking at why you’re craving it in the first place.

        It’s hard to get over that bump, but it’s definitely doable! My “sugar dragon” always wanted an apple and almond butter as my sweet treat. I had to stop feeding that craving. It finally came to the point that I was fine with just having it as part of a meal or part of one of my post-workout mini-meals and I didn’t think anything else of it. 🙂

  2. It’s quite fun finding recipes that don’t have all the crap in! Leon cookbooks are superb for all things natural and it’s not self-righteous. Sugar is a killer to give up as … it’s more addictive than heroin, cigarettes and alochol (fermented sugar). Good luck!

      • Eat food from an Eastern country – Thai food is yummy and doesn’t have cheese.
        Two profoundly delightful dessert recipes are – mango pudding and annin tofu (almond jelly). There is a little sugar (only 2 tbsps) in the recipe but I think you could just eliminate it.

  3. Good luck! I thought you were giving them up forever when I read the title of your post and I wept a little inside.
    I mean, my brother is allergic to lactose so he doesn’t eat any of those things eve, and he’s living a full ha[[y. But I don’t think I could survive PMS time without cheese, bread or chocolate haha
    Hopefully it will help with your health issues though!
    For me, I find that I don’t fair well with too much meat / fish and not enough whole grains.

    • I don’t think I have a problem with dairy…but this’ll definitely test that theory (and I 100% agree, a life without cheese is scarcely a life at all). Everyone’s different and I’m still finding out what works for my body. Hopefully these 30 days will give me some answers.

  4. It’s not bad at all. I did it for 34 days following Dr. Moreno’s plan, and I was thrilled with the results. The one area where we differ is that I incuded no-fat yogurt and milk. I found alcohol to be the hardest, but got used to that, even. Love the new drinks I use now, instead. And one of my motivations was to please Vinny! Yes, do let us know how it goes. Can you use stevia? I did…

  5. Well done! I am currently on day 30 of Whole30, what a journey! But I feel absolutely amazing, and I have decided to keep doing this. It won’t be forever, but I am determined to stick with it as long as I can.

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  14. I’m excited! I am on day 5! I love finding new recipes. I Google for example “Paleo recipe for Chicken and Chard” and Viola! Multiple recipes pop up! I didn’t even know what Chard was until I printed my Paleo grocery list from Google. lol It’s not easy but I am up to the Challenge! With all of these post, looks like I’m a little late on starting. Better late than never! Good luck all

    • Good luck Sylvia! I hope you come out the other side healthier and happier than ever. It’s a fantastic dietary re-set…thinking about taking the plunge again myself 🙂

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