Whole30 Highlights & Homemade Almond Butter

 The Whole 30 sets the stage for the book with, “The most often-quoted line in the entire Whole30 program is this one: ‘It is not hard. Don’t you dare tell us this is hard. Quitting heroin is hard. Beating cancer is hard. Drinking your coffee black is not hard.'” I’m sorry, were they speaking directly to me??? I’m one page in and they’re already calling me out…

They continue on, lighten it up a bit and discuss, “Our relationship with food is an emotional one. Food is our comfort, reward and trusted friend…And we are asking you to give up those foods for an entire month.” Thank you for giving me a little credit:-)  Below I’m going to list top points that stuck out to me.

Slay the Sugar Dragon.

honey

“Added sugar promotes overconsumption via pleasure pathways in the brain. Overconsumption leads to hormonal and metabolic dysregulation, which are inflammatory in the body. It also promotes digestive issues and inflammation in the gut.”

Not Even Whole Grains. 

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“Both refined and whole grains promote overconsumption, which creates hormonal and metabolic disruption.”

Pass on the Peanuts (and Beans, and Soy.) 

The Love Really Does Run Deep

“Peanuts are especially problematic, as they contain proteins (called lectins) that are resistant to digestion and can cross into our bloodstream, and promote inflammation anywhere in the body. These lectins may be why the incidence of peanut allergies are so prevalent today.”

So, you’re saying the jar of crunchy peanut butter I eat every week is possibly hurting me? Ouch.

Milk (and Cheese and Yogurt) Don’t Do a Body Good. 

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“Lactose and milk proteins produce a surprisingly high insulin response, which could be inflammatory in our bodies. Dairy proteins can also be inflammatory in the body and have been associated with an increased risk of autoimmune diseases.” So is this a bad time to mention that drinking my coffee black is one of my top 3 “worries” with this? Humbling. I can’t even talk about ice cream right now.

The Wrap-Up. 

“Until you eliminate these foods, you won’t know how these foods have been impacting how you look, feel, or live. Is dairy making you stuffy or wheezy? Are grains making you bloated or sad? You won’t know until you eliminate them and then reintroduce.”

Choose Your Date. 

Now, this to me is the hardest part. 40 days (with 10 days added in for reintroduction) of being wholly committed and compliant eating/drinking. They say if you’ve got a once-in-a-lifetime vacation or big event coming up then to wait until after. I may or may not have a big birthday coming up in the near future and then we may be taking a trip of a lifetime soon after that. SO, I may not actually start the Whole30 for a couple of months. BUT that doesn’t give me the green light to eat packaged, processed, dairy laden food and drink. No ma’am. Not gonna have it.

I can start making changes now. Perhaps, instead of eating my morning oatmeal (even though it’s not prepackaged and most often gluten free), I have been quickly making a couple fried eggs over a salad with avocado. (Yum!) And for lunch and dinner, I’ve been having leftovers of this week’s meal prep found here. No more sodas. I may still be having creamer in my coffee.  The Hazelnut is sooooooo good! The authors of The Whole30 tell the creamers of the world like myself that if you can’t drink it without it, either you really don’t like coffee or you’re not buying good coffee. Well that stung a little LOT!

It was also eye opening to read that we’re not allowed to take Whole30 approved ingredients to replace Whole30 non approved meals such as, pancakes, almond butter energy bites, banana ice cream. Ummm, excuse me?! I got really defensive. Then I kept reading and tucked my tail. Since the point of this is to change our mindset with food, if we give in to those sweet cravings with banana, egg, and almond butter pancakes or eat fruit entirely way too often just to cure the sweet fix, then we are NOT slaying the sugar dragon.

Fine. 

Today’s Change

Since we really do eat our body weight in peanut butter around here, one way I’m committing to change is by eating almond butter.

Now, I sent my husband to Publix to grab some almond butter and he came back with two jars totaling $22.00. Umm, thanks Boo, but, I’ll pass. Especially since “cane sugar,” and “honey,” were key ingredients, both of which are off limits. So, I returned them to Publix who kindly gave me our money back, went to Aldi, grabbed a bag of raw almonds for around $5 and am taking my frugal behind home to get out the food processor and whip up some Whole30 compliant, less expensive almond butter.

Pretty much all homemade almond butter recipes agree that it’s best to take 2-4 cups of almonds, place on baking pan and roast at 250 degrees for 15 minutes.

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I used 12 ounces of almonds here

Next, after letting almonds cool for a few minutes, place them in your food processor (or your mom’s processor that you’re currently borrowing ;-))

Turn that thing on and watch the magic happen.

I set a timer for 15 minutes and around every 1-2 minutes or when the processor sounded like an alien trying to speak, (Remember Signs starring Mel Gibson? Yes, like those aliens). I paused it to scoop the sides and make it even.

Five Minute Check Point
Five Minute Check Point

My plan was to take pictures every five minutes or so but when you’ve used a nice camera one time only in your life and that one time was today, if it starts giving you fits and you can’t figure it out, you miss the five minute photo ops 🙂 It took a WHILE to get it working again, but I did get the finished product.

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It is SO good! I added a dash of salt, splash of vanilla, and a couple shakes of cinnamon prior to processing.

Very easy process for a very healthy alternative and I’ll definitely be repeating!

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2 thoughts on “Whole30 Highlights & Homemade Almond Butter

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