There are a few differences between Eating Clean vs Whole 30, so if you are ready to join me for this January journey, check out the differences to determine what might work best for you. At this point I just can’t wait to get started. I’m sitting at the computer today with a sore throat, snuffly head and the chills…ugh. And the worse part is I brought this on myself. The culprit that dragged me down this path of Echinacea tea and chicken soup, is sugar. Yes, sugar! Did you know that eating sugar actually lowers your immune system for up to four hours after you eat it? I just came off of Christmas and my will power is about as good as a kid at Halloween. Mounds of homemade almond toffee and gluten-free sugar cookies are about as enticing as the Witch giving Snow White that shiny red apple, only that apple would have actually been good for her minus the poison! If I would just see sugar as poison in my own body, which is what it is, I could possibly resist it (read my article on Why Sugar is Toxic). Okay, I have been sleeping next to a sick hubby, so I’ll give him a little part in my flu misery.

As you know, New Year’s Day is tomorrow! We are on the final countdown and I wanted to give the reasons for Eating Clean vs Whole 30.  While there is truly not a right or wrong in either plan, jumping to ‘eating clean’ might be an easier adjustment than shooting straight for the Whole 30. So what is the Whole 30 all about? It is 30 days of eating only what is on the approved list. You can find the shopping list here. Whole 30 completely eliminates all sugar (honey & pure maple syrup included), all dairy, all alcohol, all legumes, and all grains.

What is allowed? Vegetables, fruit but no fruit juice, beef, bacon (as long as it contains 0% sugar and no nitrates) and all fish and crustaceans are allowed as long as they are not farm-raised. The shopping list gives you the best choices by highlighting the foods in blue. Coffee is okay but not recommended, and my thoughts are, ‘Why drink it if you can’t add anything to it?’  If you want to start the Whole 30, check out the Whole 30 Forum for questions you might have.

Fresh Citrus
Juicy Citrus! Yum!

This is why I have decided to go ‘clean’ for 30 days instead of Whole 30. I figure if I eat clean for 30 days, then I can try the whole 30 for another 30 days because I will have eliminated all processed foods and sugar from my diet already; I’ll be halfway there! If you are interested in getting updates and encouraging sentiments along the way just sign up on the right-hand side of this page under ‘subscribe’. If you are viewing on a cell phone it is at the very bottom of the page.

What is NOT allowed on Eating Clean? No sugar and no processed foods. This includes just about anything in the store that is pre-packaged, unless they list 100% pure ingredients with no added gums, preservatives, or sugars. No ketchup (here is an easy homemade ketchup recipe) or mayonnaise (here is an easy homemade mayonnaise) or condiments of any sort (including salad dressing), no cereals, no frozen foods like pizza or TV dinners, no coffee creamer, no ice cream, no soda. Okay, you get the point. You may have coffee on the eating clean program and you may add creamer, just not store-bought creamer. Here is a recipe to make your own vanilla coffee creamer. Did you know this is what you are drinking when you add vanilla creamer to your coffee? Here is a list of the ingredients: Water, Sugar, Palm Oil, Corn Syrup, Contains 2% Or Less Of The Following: Sodium Caseinate* (A Milk Derivative), Dipotassium Phosphate, Natural And Artificial Flavors, Mono And Diglycerides, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Carrageenan, Salt. *Sodium Caseinate Is Not A Source Of Lactose. Oh my, it is hard to pronounce some of those words!

So what is different from the Whole 30? Fresh squeezed juice, dairy (as long as it is organic, grass-fed), grains that are not processed (no white of any sort), and two sweeteners, honey and pure maple syrup. Beef, pork, bacon (as long as it does not contain sugars or nitrates), and all fish and crustaceans, and poultry are allowed. I found a few recipes here on my site that are compliant. Just click on the image.

Vegetable side dish
GF-DF Stack O’ Veggies
Roasted Root Veggies
Roasted Root Veggies
Chili-lime infused chickpeas
GF-DF Chili-Lime Chickpeas
Leek & Asparagus Soup
Leek & Asparagus Soup topped with a dollop of yogurt and finished with leek garnish.
Asian Pear-Chevre Salad with Maple-Dijon Dressing
GF-DF Asian -Pear & Chevre Salad
Blueberry Spinach Salad
GF Blueberry Spinach Salad
Cancer-fighting Quinoa Salad
GF-DF Quinoa & Orange Cumin Salad
Apple Pie Muffin Paleo, GF, DF
GF-DF Apple Pie Muffin
Zucchini Boats Italian Style
GF Italian Zucchini Boats




28 comments on “Eating Clean vs Whole 30”

  1. I have a serious sugar addiction! I tried the 21 day sugar detox and failed at day 6! I like your idea of doing clean eating before jumping to the Whole 30. I am going to have to give this a try because as addicted as I am, i do know that sugar is evil! Hope you feel better soon!

  2. Thank you for this post. I have been trying to do “Sugar free Mondays” but it’s been really hard. Any thing you suggestion for quick easy lunches? That is my hardest meal.

    • If you have a way of reheating meals, the best plan might be to make a little extra at dinner and then have left-overs the next day for lunch. Tonight we had London broil. I chopped up the left-over meat and boiled a couple of eggs. This will go on a salad tomorrow for lunch. Hope that helps!

  3. I love sugar! Can’t get enough and I’m shocked I’m not a diabetic the way I consume it. I only have issues with dairy products so it’s completely out of my eating habits.

  4. Eating clean is always a good thing to do. I try so hard to do things like this but trip up in one way or another at work. I need to find a way to learn how to maintain will power.

  5. I really liked the part about sugar lowering your immune system for 4 hours. I have such an ongoing struggle with sugar, and I think that word picture will help!

    • I use to teach piano lessons and I would always give a candy treat to the kids who had their lessons complete. One little Chinese student would always refuse. I asked her if she couldn’t eat sugar and she said, “My parents don’t want me to get sick.” I never quite understood that, but now I do. Chinese medicine is smart!

  6. It is SO hard to give up sugar, i really really struggle. But you are so right. Those dishes look amazing, I’m especially intrigued by the spinach & blueberry salad! Juiced a lot of this up together once and actually really liked it. I may try some of these to motivate myself a little 🙂

  7. Huh! I never knew the difference between the two so thank you for clearing that up! Like Alice above me, I struggle most with sugar. Aside from the sugar in my tea and coffee, my diet is pretty clean. But goodness, the sugar gets me every time!

  8. You have some delicious recipes!!! Love the addition of details like the asian pear for the salad, grape tomatoes on the zucchini boats, etc. Mixing flavors and textures really elevates it… and the natural sweetness of those ingredients help to get rid of processed alternatives. Thanks for the explanation and examples!


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