Brielle – 40 – Syracuse, NY

You can see from the before and after photos that Brielle’s had some pretty big changes–her NSV list is pretty impressive too. Her biggest NSV is after 4 years of trying to conceive and doing Whole 30 for 13 months, she found out she’s pregnant a couple of days ago! Congratulations, Brielle–we are so, so happy for you!

How many times have you done Whole 30? When was your first round?

I have done 12 rounds. I began my first round on April 11, 2017.

How did you hear about Whole 30 and what made you decide to it?

I heard about Whole 30 through an acquaintance, probably a year prior to me actually doing it.

About 6 months before starting, several things happened that led up to me finally saying to myself, “I have to do this!” I had had my third gastrointestinal flare-up and was on my third round of antibiotics. My doctor wanted another colonoscopy, blood work, and to put me on anti-inflammatory medication. My cousin had passed away unexpectedly from a heart attack at the age of 50. I was diagnosed with hypertension/high blood pressure. I also had night sweats and anxiety. I was not sleeping well, and I was still breaking out at the age of 39.

When I figured out what my “WHY” was, there was no stopping me. I wanted to get off the anti-inflammatory medication I was prescribed and heal my body. But it was also about being there to care for my family.

So, after having a panic attack one day I said, “Today is the day!” And the rest is history. While I don’t recommend this, I took myself off my anti-inflammatory medication because I needed to know what was helping my gut, this way of eating or the medication. Luckily, I hadn’t been on it long (the medication), but I can tell you it made me feel awful.

After being on Whole 30 for the first 30 days I felt amazing. While losing weight wasn’t my main purpose, it was definitely a wonderful benefit.

What scale and non-scale victories have you had as a result of Whole 30?

  • I have lost 44lbs in total (to date!)

  • Lost many inches

  • Went from a size 20/24,18/20 down to a 12/14

  • Clearer skin

  • Sleeping better

  • Lowered blood pressure

  • No longer have night sweats

  • Have continued to stay off all my gastrointestinal medication

  • Have not had a flare up in a year

  • No longer in plus size clothing

  • Feel more confident in my own skin

  • Have tried foods I would never thought I would have enjoyed before this

  • More energy

  • Helped regulate my cycles better

  • No longer having panic attacks

  • No longer taking heartburn medication

What helped you to succeed the most on Whole 30?

The support of family, friends, and my Whole 30 support group on Facebook! And my unwavering drive and determination to take back my health and not take “no” for an answer.

What’s your favorite Whole 30 recipe or go-to meal?

Boy there are many, but I would have to say the Slow Cooker Pork Lettuce Wraps with Spicy Peach Salsa from the Whole 30 Cookbook.

How has your life changed since Whole 30?

I now know how to listen to my body and how to take care of it. I didn’t realize how my eating habits were literally killing me. I know I can’t add any more days onto my life, but I know the quality of my life is so much better. My whole mindset has completely changed. Not just about food, but how to love life and those around me. Whole 30 saved my life.

In addition to Whole 30, did you make any other healthy lifestyle changes (such as incorporating fitness, smoking cessation, etc) at the same time?

I started going back to the gym and working out 3-4 times a week. And even though it’s not my favorite thing to do, it helps empower me.

What message/inspiration do you have for those just starting the program?

I would say just take it one day at a time. If you allow it, Whole 30 can completely overwhelm you and make you feel like you can’t do it. That’s why meal prepping in advance is a huge time-saver and having leftovers available for a quick meal can save you from cheating and making poor choices.

But YOU CAN DO IT! Figure out what your “WHY” is for starting Whole 30. Find people who you trust that will help support, encourage, and hold you accountable. And no matter what your “WHY” is for starting…it’s only 30 days and it’ll be so worth it!