What is a whole food challenge?
Basically you eat real food only, no processed food or food with sugar! The rules are pretty simple and a lot of this we already try to do, but this will be challenging regardless. It will involve making a lot more things homemade instead of the quick packaged stuff. Even some of the organic processed food is just that processed. It, of course, can contain organic sugar which is still not good for you.
Why do a whole food challenge?
I am excited to give it a try and really excited to pay more attention to what I am eating. If you don't know about how food affects your whole life you can watch the documentary Food Matters or read the book Food Rules by Michael Pollan. They will change your life!! :)
Here are the rules we will follow (From the 100 days of Real Food website):
What you CAN eat:
- Whole foods that are more a product of nature than a product of industry
- Lots of fruits and vegetables
- Dairy products like milk, unsweetened yogurt, eggs, and cheese
- 100% whole-wheat and whole-grains
- Seafood (wild caught is the optimal choice over farm-raised)
- Only locally raised meats such as pork, beef, and chicken
- Beverages limited to water, milk, all natural juices,naturally sweetened coffee & tea, and, to help the adults keep their sanity, wine and beer!
- Snacks like dried fruit, seeds, nuts and popcorn
- All natural sweeteners including honey, 100% maple syrup, and fruit juice concentrates are acceptable in moderation
What you CANNOT eat:
- No refined grains such as white flour or white rice (items containing wheat must say WHOLE wheat…not just “wheat”)
- No refined sweeteners such as sugar, any form of corn syrup, cane juice, or the artificial stuff like Splenda
- Nothing out of a box, can, bag, bottle or package that has more than 5 ingredients listed on the label
- No deep fried foods
- No “fast foods”
I don't think that dinner is going to be the hard part for me. I will need to make my own crusts and tortillas. But breakfast and lunch will be a little more tricky. Homemade chicken nuggets and homemade mac and cheese will be great! They will just take more time and preparation. Breakfast will need to be homemade waffles, muffins and other yummy stuff. I will just need to plan this more than I usually do so I am sure to have all the right supplies. I am excited to see just how "difficult" I find this challenge. The 100 days of real food website offers meal plans and tons of recipes here! There are also some other really great blogs/websites that focus on whole/real foods. Here are just a few that I like:
Monday: Chicken Fajitas
Tuesday: Whole Wheat Pizza
Wednesday: Fettucini Alfredo
Thursday: Kabobs with Roasted Red Pepper Dip
Photo and recipe from Family Fresh Cooking
Friday: Homemade fish "sticks"
Recipe and photo from Super Healthy Kids
If you would also like to try the 10 day challenge click here!