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What Not to Do on Whole30: 7 Popular Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them
What Not to Do on Whole30: 7 Popular Pitfalls and How to Avoid Them

As the New Year begins, many of us may be embarking on a Whole30 program. An elimination protocol, the Whole30 program removes the most common food disruptors for 30 days, which allows the body to heal and recover from foods that have been known to cause inflammation and irritation to the body.

By removing common culprits like alcohol, dairy, gluten, refined grains and sugar, Whole30 participants have reported positive changes including better sleep, clearer skin, increased energy, pain free joints and weight loss.

There are a few popular pitfalls that may hinder a Whole30 journey, so in order to succeed and reap the full benefits of a Whole30 program, here are seven tips on what to avoid, and what to do instead, when participating in a Whole30.

#1 Always Be Prepared

As the popular saying goes, “Fail to plan, plan to fail,” and this statement has never been more true than when participating in a Whole30. Be diligent about recipe research and grocery shopping, so your kitchen is fully stocked with Whole30 approved meals and snacks. Your future hangry self will thank you when you can reach for that Whole30 approved snack and dive right in without having to Google all of the ingredients.

#2 Avoid Comparison

Everybody and every body is different, so avoid comparing your Whole30 journey to that of your coworker, friend, neighbor or spouse. Just because your best friend felt great after the first week may not mean you will, so remember to focus on your own journey and realize your Whole30 may look very different from others and that’s perfectly okay. That’s completely normal and expected.

#3 Be Patient

When participating in a Whole30, one of the most popular pitfalls is impatience. Results, whether physical, mental or emotional, all take time, that’s why the program is 30 days and not three days, so no matter what day you find yourself on, remember to be patient. You didn’t get where you currently find yourself overnight, so in order to reverse those things, it’s going to take some time. Give yourself grace and patience and don’t give up. You owe it to yourself, and your health, to stick it out for the full 30 days. You can do it!

#4 Don’t Be Afraid to Purchase Whole30 Approved Meals

Many people may tell you meal prepping on a Whole30 is key and although meal prepping each week can be helpful, it’s not as critical as one may think. Many popular grocery stores like Whole Foods have a prepared foods section teeming with Whole30 approved meals. Grocery and meal delivery services as well as restaurants even have Whole30 approved menu items,  so if you don’t feel like making a meal from scratch or meal prepping, don’t be afraid to explore the local options that may be available to you in your own neighborhood.

Tip: Always have your kitchen freezer stocked with Whole30 meals so you can skip the take and whip up a homemade meal easily.

#5 Follow the Rules

The Whole30 program has very specific rules for a reason, so be sure to follow each and every one of them. Telling yourself one bite of a non-Whole30 approved food won’t do any harm, will thwart your Whole30 program and will send you straight back to day one. Be strong, remain focused, stay motivated and follow all of the Whole30 guidelines.

#6 Look at Labels

One of the most important pitfalls to avoid on Whole30 is to ignore food labels. Reading food labels is crucial not only for a successful Whole30 journey, but an overall lifestyle. Just because a label says organic or natural, doesn’t mean it’s Whole30 approved. Take the time to review ingredients and make sure you are in fact purchasing a quality, Whole30 approved food.

#7 Only Eat When You Are Truly Hungry

Many of us may have fallen into the habit of eating food simply because it is available to us. (We are looking at you day old donuts in the office break room). Instead, Whole30 asks us to only eat when we are really truly hungry. Although Whole30 is all about enjoying real, whole foods, that’s not an excuse to eat whenever. Calories still count on Whole30, so be cognizant of what you are eating and don’t eat just to eat. Always prioritize high quality proteins and fresh vegetables and enjoy fresh fruits and quality fats in moderation or sparingly.


This is the perfect time to sign up for our Subscribe & Save program if you haven't already! Having Whole30 Approved foods in your kitchen is a MUST when setting yourself up to succeed. Click the link below to get signed up for free home deliver from TRIBALÍ Foods:


No matter when you decide to participate in a Whole30, popular pitfalls may arise along the way, so remember to employ these seven tactics to help you succeed in your Whole30 journey.