The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom Info

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Over 1.5 million copies sold!

Millions of
people visit Whole30.com every month and share their dramatic
life-changing testimonials. Get started on your Whole30 transformation
with the #1 New York Times
best-selling The Whole30.


Since 2009,
Melissa Hartwig Urban's critically-acclaimed Whole30 program
has quietly led hundreds of thousands of people to effortless weight
loss and better health—along with stunning improvements in sleep
quality, energy levels, mood, and self-esteem. The program
accomplishes all of this by specifically targeting people’s habits
and emotional relationships with food. The Whole30 is designed to help
break unhealthy patterns of behavior, stop stress-related comfort
eating, and reduce cravings, particularly for sugar and carbohydrates.
Many Whole30 participants have described achieving “food
freedom”—in just thirty days.
 
Now,
The Whole30 offers a stand-alone, step-by-step plan to
break unhealthy habits, reduce cravings, improve digestion, and
strengthen your immune system. The Whole30 prepares
participants for the program in five easy steps, previews a typical
thirty days, teaches the basic meal preparation and cooking skills
needed to succeed, and provides a month’s worth of recipes
designed to build confidence in the kitchen and inspire the taste
buds. Motivating and inspiring with just the right amount of
signature tough love, The Whole30 features real-life
success stories, an extensive quick-reference FAQ, detailed elimination
and reintroduction guidelines, and more than 100 recipes using familiar
ingredients, from simple one-pot meals to complete dinner party
menus.

Average Ratings and Reviews
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Reviews for The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom:

4

Jan 29, 2019

3.5, I am rounding up based on our overall experiences not the actual book stars!!

For a full, very detailed review of our experience and how we felt week-to-week visit my blog Recipe & a Read!

So there's a lot of hype around this book / diet and honestly, in the end, I can kind of see why. There are a few caveats that go with why my husband and I jumped in head first into this challenge but in the end, I've really enjoyed the results. First and foremost, your primary goal in Whole30, I don't 3.5, I am rounding up based on our overall experiences not the actual book stars!!

For a full, very detailed review of our experience and how we felt week-to-week visit my blog Recipe & a Read!

So there's a lot of hype around this book / diet and honestly, in the end, I can kind of see why. There are a few caveats that go with why my husband and I jumped in head first into this challenge but in the end, I've really enjoyed the results. First and foremost, your primary goal in Whole30, I don't personally feel should be weight loss. You will lose weight most likely, but it should be about resetting your system and finding out how your body reacts to different foods. Along the way, you're likely to start breaking bad habits and start making healthier more positive ones.

PROS: It's only 30 days, so even if you hate it, it's a month of your life. I absolutely do feel better than I have in a long time. Cutting out refined flour, sugar and alcohol is always a positive thing to do from time to time. I am definitely sleeping better, have more energy, lower anxiety levels and just generally feel really good. It's an interesting challenge in the kitchen and definitely makes you reevaluate what you're putting in your body - especially when you go out to eat.

CONS: This would've been much harder if: I didn't live in a large city with great grocery stores that offer lots of compliant ingredients (it was surprisingly difficult to find compliant chicken and beef broth - which means if your store doesn't carry it, you have to make that on top of cooking everything at home already). If I had kids, or a partner that didn't want to do this with me (don't think I could've watched someone eat queso in front of me and not caved). Or if I didn't work from home - the sheer amount of time spent meal prepping, planning and cooking was crazy!

GENERAL TAKEAWAY: I liked this! I have very positive feelings about this experience and it was a great way to jump start 2019 to be a healthier and happier year. I will take a lot of the things I learned during this challenge and apply them to my day-to-day life to continue being healthier, and treating my body with the respect and the care it deserves. This gets lambasted for being a "fad diet" that doesn't "keep the weight off" but again, if that is your goal - you're kind of missing the spirit of Whole30 (in my humble opinion). If you think you can do Whole30, drop 10 pounds then eat pizza or fast food all the time and keep it off, then that's on you not this program. However, it's a great way to evaluate what and how you eat and really force yourself to look that dead on and make the changes you need to feel better. ...more
5

Mar 13, 2015

For people who want to whole30, but don't necessarily want to read all of the science-y stuff of why a whole30 is good for them, this is a great book. It answers a lot of questions about the whole30, covers just the basics of why a whole30 is good (if you want more in-depth, read "It Starts With Food"), provides shopping lists, lots of great recipes and a wonderful collection of resources for support, shopping and additional reading. Very well done.
3

Dec 16, 2015

I didn't read this book in-depth. I started out reading, realized that I would never be able to maintain a diet this stringent, and started skimming over parts.

There is a lot of information in this book, from the basics (How to roast a whole chicken) to the creative (how to cook eggplant or sweet potato to use in place of your burger bun). It also includes many delicious recipes. Many I will try...enough that I might be tempted to buy the book to have on hand, not enough to make me stick I didn't read this book in-depth. I started out reading, realized that I would never be able to maintain a diet this stringent, and started skimming over parts.

There is a lot of information in this book, from the basics (How to roast a whole chicken) to the creative (how to cook eggplant or sweet potato to use in place of your burger bun). It also includes many delicious recipes. Many I will try...enough that I might be tempted to buy the book to have on hand, not enough to make me stick strictly to the diet. In my mind, that is good enough. Make a few small changes and they add up. Eat some yummy healthy foods and maybe you want to do so more often. This is not what the book claims. They want you to follow the diet to the letter. If you mess up, even a little, you should start all over at day 1. Don't make any foods, even with approved foods, that resemble cheat foods or you may crave them more and you won't be retraining yourself properly.

For me, this diet is simply too strict and would be too time consuming. I'm sure there are many, well some, people that would try it and be able to stick with it. Some of those people may even love it. I'm sure they'll feel better and be healthier than I will. For me, eating delicious foods is part of enjoying life and I don't like to cut anything completely out of my diet unless it is absolutely necessary or won't really be missed. I do try to eat relatively healthy, but certainly not to this extreme.

If you are a health fanatic, this may be the perfect book for you. Or if you have certain health conditions that require you to follow a strict diet, this may work for you as well. It was simply a bit too much for me. ...more
5

May 20, 2015

I can't tell you if The Whole30 is a healthy choice, although the Hartwigs give plenty of reasons why it is. What I can tell you is that I'm glad I did the 30 days and will hopefully eat better having done them. My hsuband and I did it together which was definitely helpful.

The Whole30 rules in the most basic form are easy to understand. YES: Eat meat, seafood, eggs, vegetable, fruit and natural fats. DO: Do not consume sugar, alcohol, grains, legumes or dairy. Do not consume baked goods or I can't tell you if The Whole30 is a healthy choice, although the Hartwigs give plenty of reasons why it is. What I can tell you is that I'm glad I did the 30 days and will hopefully eat better having done them. My hsuband and I did it together which was definitely helpful.

The Whole30 rules in the most basic form are easy to understand. YES: Eat meat, seafood, eggs, vegetable, fruit and natural fats. DO: Do not consume sugar, alcohol, grains, legumes or dairy. Do not consume baked goods or "treats." Do not weight or measure yourself. I know it seems pretty restrictive, but like they say, "keep in mind that the Whole30 was intended to be a short-term reset and learning experience, not a permanent plan."


The theory is that as you slowly add the foods back in, you will see how your body reacts. Like I know dairy is not my friend and this reminded me of that fact. I felt good when I was eating the Whole30 foods, like I was doing something positive for my health. Losing 8 pounds didn't hurt either. And my husband lost almost 20. Even the dog lost 2.

It does take a lot more planning and work to eat real food. I needed to have breakfasts that David could easily grab in the morning, because he was not going to cook himself anything. I also had to plan enough left-overs from dinner to pack for lunches or have another back-up. It takes more time in the kitchen, chopping, cooking. I'll grant you it's easier and cheaper to open a box or can or throw (processed) lunch meat between two slices of bread, but real food makes me feel better, makes me a little proud of my choices.

The Whole30 has a great guide on how to approach the month and an extensive FAQ section. It also has some really yummy compliant recipes, that use ingredients I can actually find. ...more
5

September 2, 2015

I lost 50 lbs over a 2 and a half year lifestyle transformation that was sparked by this book.
3

Nov 26, 2017

I am drawn to nonfiction, health books in particular. I like reading them and I have read quite a few. First, I loved the voice of the author. It felt personal but pointed, which I appreciated. I liked that it felt she was sitting across the table.

Overall, the diet aspect felt extreme. For normal healthy people, I don't see the need for this, (even after hearing the pitch). This book felt like it was geared more towards those who are experiencing health issues on a wide scale, and who want to I am drawn to nonfiction, health books in particular. I like reading them and I have read quite a few. First, I loved the voice of the author. It felt personal but pointed, which I appreciated. I liked that it felt she was sitting across the table.

Overall, the diet aspect felt extreme. For normal healthy people, I don't see the need for this, (even after hearing the pitch). This book felt like it was geared more towards those who are experiencing health issues on a wide scale, and who want to see change. I also have gone through the cookbook. The pictures were beautiful and the recipes looked tempting.

...more
2

May 08, 2018

To be clear, I really loved the two-page guide at the heart of Melissa and Dallas Hartwig's "Whole30" eating plan, which can be entirely and totally explained thusly: Spend 30 days eating nothing but meat, vegetables and fruit, in order to detox your body from all other edible items that exist, then one at a time slowly re-introduce things like legumes, grains, dairy and sugar back into your diet, paying very close attention to how your body reacts to each of them as you start eating them again. To be clear, I really loved the two-page guide at the heart of Melissa and Dallas Hartwig's "Whole30" eating plan, which can be entirely and totally explained thusly: Spend 30 days eating nothing but meat, vegetables and fruit, in order to detox your body from all other edible items that exist, then one at a time slowly re-introduce things like legumes, grains, dairy and sugar back into your diet, paying very close attention to how your body reacts to each of them as you start eating them again. So I was legitimately shocked, then -- and I don't mean that as a snarky joke, but as a very sincere statement of incredulous disbelief -- to pick up their 432-page guide on the subject and realize that there literally isn't a single bit of original information in it besides what I just explained to you, the Hartwigs instead filling out their page count with such jaw-droppingly unbelievable cheats as a 75-page FAQ section (no, seriously, a 75-page FAQ section), and a 75-page section where they literally list every food that exists and explain whether or not it counts as a meat, vegetable or fruit (no, seriously, a 75-page section where they literally list every food that exists and explain whether or not it counts as a meat, vegetable or fruit).

The Whole30 plan itself gets 5 stars from me, a very clever and reasonable guide to reclaiming your emotional and physical dominance over your eating habits; but the book gets literally zero stars, averaging out to the 2 stars I'm assigning it here in my review. Don't under any circumstances buy this book, and please understand that I was serious when I said that my summary above contains every single bit of information you need to know about how to institute the Whole30 plan in your life. If you don't believe me, do some online research and prove it to yourself; but what you should absolutely not do is purchase this book at full retail price no matter how tempting it might seem. ...more
4

Jul 14, 2015

I was on the fence with whether or not to get this book. I have been eating paleo-ish for about 2.5 years so I was familiar with many recipes and figured the recipe portion would not be helpful. However, I wanted the book for the FAQ and guidance as we went through this challenge.

I have to say my assessment was correct. Having the guidance was really helpful, especially for the Whole30 rules that don't make as much sense on the surface. Honestly, I would recommend the book just for the section I was on the fence with whether or not to get this book. I have been eating paleo-ish for about 2.5 years so I was familiar with many recipes and figured the recipe portion would not be helpful. However, I wanted the book for the FAQ and guidance as we went through this challenge.

I have to say my assessment was correct. Having the guidance was really helpful, especially for the Whole30 rules that don't make as much sense on the surface. Honestly, I would recommend the book just for the section on how you will feel day by day. I didn't have the symptoms as bad because of already eating paleo but there was still some shock from going 100% clean and it's nice to look at the book and realize that it's totally normal to have some trouble the first few days.

The recipes don't offer too much if you are already familiar with paleo cooking or have other paleo cookbooks. However, the basics are VERY helpful. Some books do have recipes for things like mayo but few have them all in one spot. I find myself referencing the kitchen basics more than the complicated recipes. It's funny how I can cook so much and be able to make a lot of cool things but want the help for simple things like sauces.

Anyways, I would suggest the book if you are doing Whole30 from any level. DEFINITELY get it if you do not have any paleo background. ...more
4

Jul 11, 2017

I'm on day eight of The Whole30 and so far so good. I've been grocery shopping more frequently than ever before. Breakfast is the hardest meal because I don't want to eat eggs without toast but I haven't cheated. I was tempted to add some regular butter to a bake potato the other day but I didn't!!

I love the recipes in the book. I followed the recipe for a steak and it was the best steak I've ever eaten that I cooked. I'm eating more vegetables with this diet so that's a good thing. I know I I'm on day eight of The Whole30 and so far so good. I've been grocery shopping more frequently than ever before. Breakfast is the hardest meal because I don't want to eat eggs without toast but I haven't cheated. I was tempted to add some regular butter to a bake potato the other day but I didn't!!

I love the recipes in the book. I followed the recipe for a steak and it was the best steak I've ever eaten that I cooked. I'm eating more vegetables with this diet so that's a good thing. I know I won't stick with this forever because I can't live without bread but I'll definitely reduce my intake of sweets and processed foods! ...more
5

April 4, 2016

Regular, good-for-you food, easy to make meals... I LOVE THIS BOOK!!!
3

Feb 19, 2017

The Whole 30: The 30 Day-Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom is meant to be read after It Starts with Food. However, there's enough information in here that if you don't want to go through all the cited scientific "evidence" then this is a fine place to start if you are interested in doing a Whole 30.

Roughly, the first quarter of the book gives you all the details about Whole 30 and a bunch of commonly asked questions and answers. The rest of the book is about food preparation, and has The Whole 30: The 30 Day-Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom is meant to be read after It Starts with Food. However, there's enough information in here that if you don't want to go through all the cited scientific "evidence" then this is a fine place to start if you are interested in doing a Whole 30.

Roughly, the first quarter of the book gives you all the details about Whole 30 and a bunch of commonly asked questions and answers. The rest of the book is about food preparation, and has recipes.

In regards to the scientific basis of Whole 30, this book doesn't really get into it, but it does make the rating suffer. Being a scientific minded person, there were more than a few things I was skeptical about, especially all of these quotes about how Whole 30 completely revolutionized their health.

Whole 30 has an active forum, which contains reality from real people, many of who exclaim Whole 30 didn't cure their 'x' condition or help them lose weight.

Which honestly, is fine, in my opinion. Whole 30 forces you to eat extremely healthy. That in itself is super valuable.

There's a mixed message of Whole 30 can be super healing vs. you just need to do Whole 30 longer if you don't see results. You're not seeing results? You're probably not following the meal template exactly, etc.

Don't go into Whole30 thinking it's going to fix some medical issue. Don't expect yourself to lose a certain amount of weight. Just do it because you want a healthy reset, and you want to stop yourself from eating chocolate chip cookies at 1am.

Whole30 should really just state that increasing your intake of healthy fats and vegetables, while throwing out all the junk, is the reason why it's healthy. Instead, it does this weird sidestep about how this diet is super healing and the right way to eat, and here's some sketchy scientific evidence about how bad 'insert food group' is for people. All the cited evidence is to support their claims, rather than presenting a whole picture of the evidence, so I would take the claims with a large grain of salt.

For Whole 30, you're basically only allowed to eat meat, eggs, vegetables, fruit, and nuts. No grains, soy, legumes, beans, dairy, sulfites, added sugar. Very limited snacking. An elimination diet really.

I'm coming to the end of my Whole 30. My husband and I have both lost weight. However, between the two of us, his body seems to have taken this diet change easier. He has a lot more energy, whereas I don't feel too much of a difference. It hasn't helped my headaches and migraines.

I assume there's a stark difference between male and female bodies in regards to burning fat, as the Whole 30 cuts out so many carbs, it attempts to get your body to live off fat.

There is a mixed message in the book between feeding your sugar demon but then making sure you are eating enough starchy vegetables if you're tired.

This has helped us eat less overall. We don't snack much, and gone are the treats after dinner because they're not allowed. It's been a good reset, but I really do miss carbs. I'm not someone who really enjoys meat and eggs, so a lot of meals have been depressing to me. Husband on the other hand loves this diet. ...more
5

Oct 05, 2016

I have a coworker who loves this, so I decided to check it out. I read it out loud to my husband on a long road trip last spring, and we agreed to give it a try.
It's an adjustment to change eating habits so drastically, but we've both experienced health benefits since we did it-weight loss for both of us, and a huge improvement in my breathing for me. I've had asthma since I was a kid, and in the past couple of years, it felt like it was getting worse. After changing my diet, I'm completely off I have a coworker who loves this, so I decided to check it out. I read it out loud to my husband on a long road trip last spring, and we agreed to give it a try.
It's an adjustment to change eating habits so drastically, but we've both experienced health benefits since we did it-weight loss for both of us, and a huge improvement in my breathing for me. I've had asthma since I was a kid, and in the past couple of years, it felt like it was getting worse. After changing my diet, I'm completely off the steroid inhaler I used every day, and only occasionally need the rescue inhaler. This wasn't a result that had even occurred to me when I started this thing, and it kind of amazes me.
I can't say a lot about the recipes. My husband does more inventions of his own than uses the ones in the book.
The tone of the writing in the first part of the book, the part that describes the mentality behind the diet, the strict Whole 30 and what happens afterward, is friendly, conversational and funny. It's not a chore to read through to get a good idea of what to expect.
Cheese and candy fiend (not together-don't be gross) that I was, I never thought I'd be able to give those things up, but it wasn't that hard. Now that I'm not on a strict 30 day stretch, I make periodic allowances for things that were no-no's during the Whole 30- I just don't eat them on a daily or even weekly basis.
It's worth looking at for the weight loss alone. I've gone down a couple sizes in 5 months. But the other health benefits we weren't anticipating have made this something I expect to permanently affect how we eat.


...more
4

Aug 13, 2016

I loved and appreciated Melissa's sarcastic, tough, no-nonsense writing throughout this book. She has an answer for every question and if there's a website filled with a support system, resources, and even more recipes and answers.

Whole30 is not a diet, it's a lifestyle- this mantra is repeated throughout the guidebook. She starts off with the rules, what you can eat, what you can't, how our bodies respond to change, what to expect day by day, and including notes on what to do in social settings I loved and appreciated Melissa's sarcastic, tough, no-nonsense writing throughout this book. She has an answer for every question and if there's a website filled with a support system, resources, and even more recipes and answers.

Whole30 is not a diet, it's a lifestyle- this mantra is repeated throughout the guidebook. She starts off with the rules, what you can eat, what you can't, how our bodies respond to change, what to expect day by day, and including notes on what to do in social settings like dinner parties, or when you are traveling. ...more
1

Dec 08, 2017

I grabbed this from the library to supplement some dietary changes I am making for GERD and overall health. I had heard good things and wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I have several problems with the book, and the diet in general, however.

- They promise this diet will do ALL THE THINGS, and that should immediately make you highly skeptical. When they listed bipolar disorder as one of the many illness that can be "cured" by this diet, I was appalled. That's not only ridiculous, it's I grabbed this from the library to supplement some dietary changes I am making for GERD and overall health. I had heard good things and wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I have several problems with the book, and the diet in general, however.

- They promise this diet will do ALL THE THINGS, and that should immediately make you highly skeptical. When they listed bipolar disorder as one of the many illness that can be "cured" by this diet, I was appalled. That's not only ridiculous, it's potentially dangerous.

- They advocate for eating bacon, but not black beans. Don't get me wrong, I love me some bacon and avocado toast, but allowing bacon and excluding healthy foods like black beans, quinoa, and sourdough bread?

- The idea that if you slip up one time you have to start over at day 1 is psychologically damaging, especially for people with binge eating problems. We tend to overcompensate with guilt and more binge eating if we do one thing wrong, instead of allowing ourselves some forgiveness and promising to do better.

I get their premise, that you should eliminate the most inflammatory foods from your diet for a month to discover which foods make you feel unhealthy. Such a teeny, weeny, small, tiny percentage of the population is even *estimated* to have an inflammatory response to these food groups that it's asinine to suggest everyone give them up "just in case".

Furthermore, you don't have to give up 90% of what you eat to determine if you are having a bad response to a certain food. Just give up THAT particular food for a couple weeks, if your symptoms improve, keep it out of your life.

Instead of this book, read Michael Pollan's "Food Rules", you'd be much better off. ...more
5

May 21, 2015

I have really enjoyed the recipes in this books so far. And also the brief explanation of the Whole30 concept. I have seen a lot of complaints about the book containing simple recipes like how to fry an egg, but when you are eating simple whole foods knowing how to prepare them well makes all the difference in the world! I know I will reference this book a lot for the large section on sauces, dips, and dressings. It's nice to be able to whip up homemade mayonnaise, ketchup, or dressing to spice I have really enjoyed the recipes in this books so far. And also the brief explanation of the Whole30 concept. I have seen a lot of complaints about the book containing simple recipes like how to fry an egg, but when you are eating simple whole foods knowing how to prepare them well makes all the difference in the world! I know I will reference this book a lot for the large section on sauces, dips, and dressings. It's nice to be able to whip up homemade mayonnaise, ketchup, or dressing to spice up any dish. The only thing missing is a dessert section...kidding (not kidding). ...more
4

Mar 14, 2019



I got this from my daughter for my birthday. She was inspired to buy it for me after experiencing sucess from following the regime herself and thought it may help me. It definately sounds promising, especially taking into account her and her friend's (that has also done it and seen some amazing results regarding her serious health issues) first hand testimonies. I am willing to try it-- but I must admit, it really does sound challenging, with all the foods to be eliminated for at least 30 days

I got this from my daughter for my birthday. She was inspired to buy it for me after experiencing sucess from following the regime herself and thought it may help me. It definately sounds promising, especially taking into account her and her friend's (that has also done it and seen some amazing results regarding her serious health issues) first hand testimonies. I am willing to try it-- but I must admit, it really does sound challenging, with all the foods to be eliminated for at least 30 days to detox (longer if the reader has some stubborn health complaints)... including all forms of sugar, grains, dairy and legumes.... I started thinking, what will I be able to eat? Well, that is lots of protein and as many fruits and veggies as desired. I will give it a shot-- hopefully I will be singing the book's praises too. If I do, the rating would go up, lol. : )
 
 


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3

Jun 29, 2016

EDIT (11/17/16): Fixed minor grammar problems.

The Whole30 is an extreme paleo diet that claims to improve everything from joint pain to AHDH to sleep apnea. Regardless of how truthful that is, the diet itself is deceptively simple: it’s the food version of a juice cleanse. The end-goal of the diet is to break addictions to unhealthy sugars, carbs, and dairy products by following a cold turkey regime. The Hartwigs have made great efforts to avoid being just another fad diet, and have cultivated a EDIT (11/17/16): Fixed minor grammar problems.

The Whole30 is an extreme paleo diet that claims to improve everything from joint pain to AHDH to sleep apnea. Regardless of how truthful that is, the diet itself is deceptively simple: it’s the food version of a juice cleanse. The end-goal of the diet is to break addictions to unhealthy sugars, carbs, and dairy products by following a cold turkey regime. The Hartwigs have made great efforts to avoid being just another fad diet, and have cultivated a strong and supportive community around the Whole30 over the years.

The Whole30 itself is an acceptable diet for people who eat too much pizza, pasta, and pancakes and want to quit. Despite the restricting regime, the Hartwigs are very accommodating for diverse lifestyles and medical problems. The book provides good advice for pre- and post-Whole30 undertakings, and the plan itself is amateur friendly. Most of THE WHOLE30’s suggested recipes and the complementary pairings suggested are designed to be flexible, leftover friendly, and prepared with optimal cost/energy expenditure.

While I did not undergo the Whole30, I did each sample day at least twice just to see how feasible the recipes were for a three-person household. The cost of groceries averaged to about $45—$65 per day*, depending on how many ingredients, spices, or coupons were already on hand. The book is canned food friendly, and few recipes require obscure or expensive items. Since most of the recipes serve 3-4 people, it’s easy to cut costs by downsizing the proportions of the meals if the dieter is flying solo. The only problem recipe-wise are the authors' subpar and shortcut filled instructions. If following their recipes to the letter, the eggs turn out rubbery**, the sauces are runny, and everything else feels haphazardly thrown together.

Unfortunately, THE WHOLE30 is not good introduction to the diet. The organization and content quality of the book are major problems. The book is divided into three sections: a brief explanation of the diet plan, a lengthy FAQ, and recipes/further instructions on meal planning. It shouldn’t be a hassle to read in theory, but the authors managed to turn it into a confusing mess. They frequently refer to other sections of the book instead of addressing the topics properly, only for those sections to refer back to previous sections, and so on and so forth. The Kindle edition is kind enough to interlink each mentioned chapter or recipe, but it's still distracting for the reader. Meanwhile, an occasional paragraph or two of text will be in a different color, which appears as borderline illegible light grey on older model kindles. The FAQ is particularly horrendous in this regard.

Throughout the book, the authors take every opportunity to plug their website and other published literature. As the Whole30 resembles real-life recovery programs, it’s no surprise that a support network is such a big component of the Whole30 lifestyle. It becomes a problem, however, when “go on the forum!” or “Google it!” is the answer to far too many areas of concern that can’t be answered by “go read IT STARTS WITH FOOD!” Nearly every scientific claim made by the back isn’t backed up with any substantial references, presumably because the Hartwigs would rather advertise another book than include a bibliography. The remaining information seems shallow and repetitive in consequence, especially when they direct the reader to their online shopping lists for the twentieth time.

Due to the lack of substantial content, THE WHOLE30: THE 30 DAY GUIDE is not worth the $30 cover price. Buy it used or borrow the book if you’re considering taking the plunge.

*Note: I live in a tourist trap and a food desert, so my food expenses cost a bit more than average.
**Just for comparison, I made some of the same egg recipes from THE JOY OF COOKING. The difference between quality is astronomical. ...more
4

Apr 11, 2015

I pre-ordered this book in January and received an advance copy. After having read It Starts with Food last year and participating in the Januray 2015 Whole30, I was still left with some lingering questions. This book will answer any and all questions you may have about completing the Whole30. The FAQ sections are very informative and lengthy. The book is wonderfully written in Melissa's no nonsense style which I love.

The second half of the book is full of recipes and meal plans which are great I pre-ordered this book in January and received an advance copy. After having read It Starts with Food last year and participating in the Januray 2015 Whole30, I was still left with some lingering questions. This book will answer any and all questions you may have about completing the Whole30. The FAQ sections are very informative and lengthy. The book is wonderfully written in Melissa's no nonsense style which I love.

The second half of the book is full of recipes and meal plans which are great for someone who is new to the Paleo lifestyle or Whole30. Every recipe has a beautiful colour photo which I really appreciate. I hate getting a cookbook and finding out that only half of the recipes are show in photographs.

The Whole30 challenge is perfect for anyone suffering from auto-immune illnesses or if you just want to kick start weight loss and break bad habits with food. ...more
4

Sep 12, 2018

While reading this book I learned about healthy eating and new recipes to explore. This book is a healthy cook book which goes in depth about the science behind cooking. To be honest I did not follow every days meal but I did enjoy cooking some of the dishes with my family. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to lead a healthy lifestyle and doesn’t know where to start.
3

Feb 28, 2019

This book was very helpful in terms of tips and advice for doing the Whole 30 successfully. I enjoyed reading through the beginning of the book. Unfortunately, once I got to the recipe section of the book... I was less than impressed. Some of the staple recipes are helpful and I might try the chili recipe, but I think they could have done a better job at supplying tastier looking recipes.
5

Jun 26, 2015

If you are like me, you will do the Whole30 (or something like it) more than once. If you are on your 3rd round (like me), you may not get much from this book. That said, it's well written and obscenely simplified and detailed and really targets those who have NOT done a Whole30 yet, or those who have tried and failed. The authors really said it well...this book is the equivalent of training wheels on your bike. It gives you all the support you need, and where to go for even more support on the If you are like me, you will do the Whole30 (or something like it) more than once. If you are on your 3rd round (like me), you may not get much from this book. That said, it's well written and obscenely simplified and detailed and really targets those who have NOT done a Whole30 yet, or those who have tried and failed. The authors really said it well...this book is the equivalent of training wheels on your bike. It gives you all the support you need, and where to go for even more support on the internet every.step.of.the.way. It is not the same as reading "It Starts with Food". This book covers ground I haven't seen since The Joy of Cooking; like steaming vegetables and frying an egg. Some people may scoff at that, but for people who have no idea how to cook, it could be just the hand holding they need. I give this book a 5 star rating not because I needed it, but because for the people who do - this one is it.

In addition, there are specialty chapters for vegan/vegetarians, lactating/pregnant women, suggestions for athletes, and some particular common health issues (such as having no gallbladder, like me). They also cover the reintroduction phase, which can be really challenging, and how to navigate the real world and identify craving cues. At some point you will probably find yourself back where you started, but don't panic. Armed with the information sources and support you need, you can easily do another Whole30.
...more
5

Aug 25, 2016

My five star rating is for content not literary merit. The authors have a wonderful clarity in providing the rationale for eating unprocessed food. I feel (momentarily) convinced. I believe I may try their 30 day plan - but I probably will not begin until late September because I've got engagements where the consumption of wine may be required in order to appear normal. In the meantime, I've donated a lot of crap food from my pantry and freezer to Harbor Interfaith homeless shelter, forcing My five star rating is for content not literary merit. The authors have a wonderful clarity in providing the rationale for eating unprocessed food. I feel (momentarily) convinced. I believe I may try their 30 day plan - but I probably will not begin until late September because I've got engagements where the consumption of wine may be required in order to appear normal. In the meantime, I've donated a lot of crap food from my pantry and freezer to Harbor Interfaith homeless shelter, forcing myself to actually cook genuine food. I feel lighter already! ...more
4

Apr 17, 2018

Excited to start my first Round of Whole30 next week! I’ll be honest, I’d heard so many people talk about this lifestyle change for awhile now, but my preconceptions were that it was just another diet trend geared toward all the meat and vegetables. I didn’t realize the whole theory of breaking bad relationships with food along with the habits and strongholds that go with what you put in your body when you’re bored, anxious, stressed, etc. The science behind the Whole30 movement makes so much Excited to start my first Round of Whole30 next week! I’ll be honest, I’d heard so many people talk about this lifestyle change for awhile now, but my preconceptions were that it was just another diet trend geared toward all the meat and vegetables. I didn’t realize the whole theory of breaking bad relationships with food along with the habits and strongholds that go with what you put in your body when you’re bored, anxious, stressed, etc. The science behind the Whole30 movement makes so much sense, and I’m excited to get on board!! ...more
0

Feb 01, 2017

I didn't actually read this book from cover to cover, I used it to help me prepare meals for my husband's diet. He just completed this personal challenge and I'm so proud of him!
4

Mar 26, 2017

I rated this book a 4 purely based off the fact that I read every single word (with the exception of the chapters that didn't pertain to me: feeding your kids following Whole30, pregnancy/nursing guidelines, and if you have certain illnesses) and I've never done that with this type of book. The material is very easy to follow and the science is broken down in such a way that anyone can understand. I'll revisit my rating after I follow the plan for 30 days to state if it was effective and if it I rated this book a 4 purely based off the fact that I read every single word (with the exception of the chapters that didn't pertain to me: feeding your kids following Whole30, pregnancy/nursing guidelines, and if you have certain illnesses) and I've never done that with this type of book. The material is very easy to follow and the science is broken down in such a way that anyone can understand. I'll revisit my rating after I follow the plan for 30 days to state if it was effective and if it delivered any results. And, while any lifestyle change can seem overwhelming this quote from the book brought it all into perspective, "Don't you dare tell us this is hard. Beating cancer is hard. Birthing a baby is hard. Losing a parent is hard. Drinking your coffee black is.not.hard." ...more

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