Whether you’re just getting ready to dive into your first round of the Whole30 diet or you’re a seasoned veteran, you probably have interest in learning about the unexpected benefits of the Whole30. There is so much more to the Whole30 and why people may choose to do it. In this article, we’ll be discussing some of the unexpected benefits of Whole30 diet and sharing our experiences with each other in the comments!
Note: Remember, your mileage may vary on these benefits and symptoms. Not everybody will react the same way to the Whole30 diet. Some people may experience all of these, some of these, or none of these. Each individual has their own journey. At the end of the day, the Whole30 can teach you a lot about how to live a healthier life even if you don’t experience any of these benefits.
7 Unexpected Benefits of the Whole30 Diet
Of course weight loss is always a wonderful benefit and a completely valid reason to try Whole30 as well. However, one of the coolest unexpected benefits of completing a Whole30 is having clearer skin. Many people who complete one or more rounds of Whole30 have reported that they notice a visible change in skin clarity.
This is often a reported benefit by people who do the Whole30 as well. This is one of the most common unexpected benefits of Whole30 that people discuss. If you feel a little sluggish for the first week or two, try your best to stay committed for the full 30 days. After the initial period of detox, ridding your body of the “junk” or your past diet, you’ll likely notice a difference in your energy levels.
Decrease in cravings
They say it takes 21 days to form a habit, and after 30 days, you’d be surprised how easily you’re able to satisfy your cravings with healthier foods. Many people report a noticeable decrease in the number of carbohydrate cravings they have in particular, and when they do have cravings, find it easier to satisfy in a healthier way.
The quality of your sleep can be vastly improved with the elimination of “junk” foods. Things like heartburn that would normally interrupt sleep could be eliminated altogether, allowing you to get a deeper sleep each night. Each person’s reaction will vary, but many Whole30 achievers have discussed an improvement in their quality of sleep. This is probably the most noticeable unexpected benefit for me personally.
Reduction in number and intensity of migraines.
If you’re a sufferer of migraines, like I am, you’ll be happy to know that many people report a reduction in the number of migraines they suffer! This has been one of the best benefits for me personally. Additionally, the Whole30 gives you a great opportunity to pinpoint migraine triggers during the reintroduction period after each Whole30 round. I went from nearly daily migraines to about once a month after doing a Whole30 challenge followed by continuing to eat a mostly Paleo diet. I have not been able to pinpoint my food triggers so far, even after the reintroduction of a few foods. I suspect either gluten or dairy to be my main causes, but at this point, I’m not willing to go back to eating those foods to find out.
Reduction in chronic pain.
Sufferers of chronic pain have reported a decrease in pain as well as less dependency on pain medications. Many causes of chronic pain can be (at least somewhat) attributed to inflammation. Because eliminating these food groups from your diet for 30 days can also greatly decrease inflammation, you may notice that your pain is greatly reduced. You’ll likely find that even if inflammation isn’t the root cause of your chronic pain, it is a contributing factor, and eliminating it can help with your pain management. This was my number one reason for trying the Whole30, and I am happy to report that much (most) of my joint and muscle pain has disappeared.
Decrease in swelling
This is an unexpected benefit that I was not anticipating. For many years, I have struggled with joint pain and swelling, particularly in my ankles. After my first Whole30 challenge, I began to notice that not only was my pain improved, I had noticeable ankle bones again. I believe this benefit comes from the reduction of sodium in my diet since I’m no longer eating processed foods. If I do eat a meal out, with a lot of added salt, the swelling begins to return almost immediately.
If you are a veteran of the Whole30, what unexpected benefits of the Whole30 diet have you encountered?
If you haven’t completed a round of the Whole30 diet, which of these benefits of the Whole30 diet are you looking forward to the most? Share in the comments!
Next Up: How to Get Your Family on Board with Your Whole30 Diet