Sometimes, We Get It Wrong. Sorry, Pure Wraps.

In 2011, we discovered this cool new “sandwich wrap” substitute, made only of coconut. Dubbed “The Pure Wraps,” we thought of them as the perfect grain-free meat-and-veggie-holder-togetherer, like using a lettuce leaf or sheet of nori (only less messy). We had some great conversations with the owner of the company, felt good about the product, their quality, and the company, and decided to make them Whole30® Approved.

Over the last two years, this has been the most hotly contested Whole30 Approved product to date. We’ve heard more than a few questions about why these were okay on the Whole30, but other “substitutes” like Paleo breads or tortillas, weren’t. Whole30 Forum member Jeepifer asked, “I’m a little confused as to why a ‘wrap’ would be okay, but not a Paleo bread? Isn’t that kind of the SWYPO mentality, subbing a Paleo-fied item?” (Refer to the SWYPO rule–no “Paleo-fied” baked goods, treats, or junk foods.)

At the time, we felt justified in our logic that these wraps weren’t a craving-inducing replacement for bread, tortillas, or other grain-based sandwich wraps. While a Paleo pancake looks and tastes like a pancake, these wraps in no way look or taste like any bread item we’ve ever had–they’re more of a substitution (like spaghetti squash for spaghetti) than a straight swap. But honestly, the more we thought about it, the more we realized… you were right. Why a wrap but not bread? Or tortillas? Or biscuits? (Or any number of Paleo-fied grain-free baked goods they’re coming out with these days…)

So, in an effort to apply consistent logic to the rules, and to avoid further confusion, we are removing Pure Wraps from our list of Whole30 Approved items. For those who are disappointed, we’re sorry–we’re certainly not trying to make the program harder for you. But in retrospect, we made a mistake on this one. And in an effort to bring you the very best program we can, with rules that are designed to maximize your success in every way, we’re taking it back.

Sometimes we get it wrong, but we’re willing to admit it, and do what we need to do to make the situation right. Thanks to all who prompted open dialogue on this issue. We’re always happy to have a respectful discussion about any aspect of the program, and you are always welcome to share your ideas to make it better with us.

But pancakes are still off limits, even if they’re just made with bananas and eggs. We’re not budging on that one. (And we don’t think you’d want us to.)


Dallas, Melissa, and the Whole9 team

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  1. Robby says

    Hi Dallas and Melissa, Thanks for sharing. I actually I had no idea that the pure wraps were controversial, but given your explanation it makes a bit more sense. If we’re talking about revisions to the Whole30, here are two I’ve constantly thought about that I think are much needed, namely butter and white potatoes. If the argument against butter is that some people might be sensitive to it because of the incredibly minuscule amounts of casein or lactose that seems a bit odd to me. If someone has a FODMAP intolerance, or thyroid issues, or other digestive issues there are plenty of real whole foods on the whole 30 that could be problematic (i.e., all crucifers and coconut products), and yet those things are still on the Whole30. I would make a case for coconut milk in a can being worse than something like butter due to BPA content, FODMAPS, and guar gum. Furthermore, I think the benefits of butter far outweigh any drawbacks. You can put it on almost any food and it tastes amazing. Ghee, while good, is definitely not the same taste as butter.You could stipulate in your program that the butter must be entirely grassfed so on and so forth. I would make the exact same case for white potatoes. The stipulation that we can’t eat those but we can eat sweet potatoes really does seem entirely arbitrary, as you guys have admitted yourself. If the problem is the starch content that’s basically the same issue with sweet potatoes. If the problem is the glycoalkaloids then stipulate that people skin the white potatoes. If the problem is that white potatoes have more pesticides than sweet potatoes stipulate that they only be organic. If the problem is that it’s just not as nutrient dense as white potatoes that’s just not true as Mat LaLonde has talked about. I think these two REAL WHOLE FOOD choices are things that are mistakenly being left out of the Whole30 like bacon and ghee initially were. Furthermore, both of these would be huge additions to the Whole30 that would make it a) a lot more understandable for people and b) give them a lot of more food choices. If there’s a reason to keep these two foods out I’d like to hear responses to my points above. Thanks again for all the information you provide and your constant striving for consistency.

  2. Robby says

    Sorry. One correction and one thing to add. When I mentioned the nutrient density question above I should have said “if the issue is that sweet potatoes are more nutrient dense than white potatoes this is not true because of what Mat LaLonde and others have shown.” One objection or counterargument that you guys might give back to the arguments above is that butter and white potatoes would be problematic for autoimmunity. This is absolutely true. However, there are a few things on the Whole30 that are problematic for autoimmunity such as eggs and egg whites, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant. If you’re only other concern about butter and white potatoes is that they’re bad for autoimmunity then just keep them on the autoimmune Whole30 protocol like eggs, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, etc. and include the butter and white potatoes on the regular Whole30. If the argument for keeping white potatoes and butter off is that they POTENTIALLY promote autoimmunity, then eggs should not be on the Whole30 either. I think something like eggs has way more of a potential for autoimmune issues and digestive issues than something like butter or white potatoes.

  3. Dallas says

    My name is Dallas, but I’m not “the” Dallas–I think the reason white potatoes need to be left off the whole30 is the potential for triggering cravings and continuing in old habits, just like the admonition for LaraBars to be emergency food and avoiding fruit as dessert. If potatoes were allowed, I would have eaten them every day–possibly more than once a day–in the place of more nutrient-dense vegetables. In my post-Whole30 life, butter and white potatoes were the two additions I made for everyday. Thirty days is not too long to wait.

  4. says

    Re:white potatoes
    I know in my household (and probably several others) white potatoes will easily push other veggies off the plate. If there are white potatoes in the house, I’m very likely to cook them with our breakfast or dinner in place of green veggies. Not so much with sweet potatoes.

    I so agree with you on the butter. In fact, after my first whole30, I’ve done several more without clarifying my butter :)

  5. Jason says

    Sorry, guys, but I do not agree with this decision. I get it. You’re going for the SWYPO and healthy psychological response thing. If Pure Wraps truly contain only coconut and don’t really behave or feel exactly like bread, I don’t see how they can be wrong. To be clear, I haven’t had them, haven’t seen them in any stores where I live (but haven’t really tried that hard to find them, either). I think people have to take some responsibility for themselves in this, too. If someone knows they have unhealthy psychological response issues and they are going to seek out SYWPO foods, then they shouldn’t use these. For some people who don’t necessarily face those issues – or as strongly, Pure Wraps should be fine even during Whole30. If you start eating them daily, it’s clearly SWYPO and time to cut back. People who need their hand held every day shouldn’t be dominating this program for the rest of us who can take responsibility for ourselves. Maybe you should also come up with some Whole9 ‘Yes’ but Whole30 ‘No’ products – to say there are good products for Paleo eating, but to avoid or limit during Whole30.

  6. Michelle says

    Robby, I think the reason butter is not allowed is because some people ARE sensitive to casein and lactose, even in miniscule amounts and how will they ever know unless they complete a Whole30, all the way, with no butter, and then try dairy during a reintroduction? The truth is that for people with a serious food intolerance, no amount is safe. That includes the amount in unclarified butter. Like Dallas (but not “the” Dallas, hehe) said, you’re welcome to use grassfed butter in your own post-Whole30 life if you know it doesn’t affect you. N=1, after all.

  7. Brittany says

    I agree with Robby’s comments here.

    I used to stress a lot about health and food choices. I definitely had collected too many underpants! I became stuck in my very bad SAD food choices because what’s the point of changing anything if you aren’t 100% sure that it’s THE RIGHT THING? And of course, all the resources available contradict each other — you can find an expert and a book for anything! Then one day I decided that there was no way to find the 100% perfect diet/lifestyle. There will always be some “expert” or another (respected educated people, not even the random crazies) who will say I should be doing something differently.

    I prefer to take what I need and leave the rest. So for instance, potatoes are kind of a bad food choice *for me* because they keep me away from veggie variety and it doesn’t matter whether they are white or sweet. (White only tend to be a bit more problematic because they are easier to prep and also order when dining out but I am happy as a clam with either one.) I could have potatoes at every meal, every day, and be a happy camper. I want potatoes more than I want other vegetables, hands down no contest.

    The much-vilified paleo pancakes are NOT an issue for me. They taste good, they are a nice change for breakfast, they are an accessible food when I cook for my non-paleo people, and they do not make a regular appearance in my life. Eating one paleo pancake does not make me want to eat 4700 more. I could NOT have paleo pancakes at every meal every day and be a happy camper. I do not want paleo pancakes more than I want vegetables. (Please note that I do not pour maple syrup all over them because I am too cheap to buy the real stuff and obviously the fake stuff is all kinds of bad for you.)

    The Whole 30 creators can say “Have a sweet potato, no egg+banana pancakes, these are the rules!” It’s their program, they can outlaw whatever they’d like for any reason they choose. I’ll take what I need to be healthy from their guidelines and leave what I don’t need. I think the whole point of the Whole 30 is to be responsible for your own health. Be your own n=1 experiment and see what gives you issues.

    As far as this wrap goes, I could see it being a little issue for me because it is easy and easy means I’ll turn to it first at the expense of other “more nutrient dense” choices. But I’m guessing they’re expensive (or at least more than lettuce I would use otherwise) so if I did buy them, I would definitely ration carefully which means they wouldn’t be a huge issue for me personally. N=1!

  8. Marguerite says


    I did my first whole30 in August of this year. It was life changing for me. My first reintroduction food was dairy. In one day, I ate organic grassfed butter, cottage cheese, ice cream, imported Switzerland Swiss cheese, and imported Reggiano Parmagiano cheese. The next day, the arthritic knee pain which had all but disappeared on day 3 of my whole30 returned with a vengeance, as did 3.5 pounds that I had lost. Going dairy free again, the knee pain eventually subsided and the weight came off.

    A few weeks later, I had a couple of small homemade treats at a friend’s house which contained a tiny amount of butter (probably less than a half teaspoon in total). The next day my knees were hurting and I had gained a pound.

    The whole30 taught me that I am very sensitive to the inflammatory properties in milk. I have no problems digesting it, but it causes me to have painful joints and to retain water. If my body reacts that way to minute quantities of milk protein, this must also be true for some other people and the only way to find that out is to go completely dairy free for a long enough time to find out if that is the case.

  9. Casey says

    I agree with Kevin and Jason – coconut wraps for me do not trigger the same response as say, a Paleo brownie would. It’s just coconut for crying out loud. And quite frankly, the reality is that we can eat what we want and Dallas and Melissa WON’T KNOW ;) So for me, I would still eat these wraps and call it good for a Whole 30. I think we just cannot get this specific about perfectly healthy foods. Snickers bars = no. Wraps made from pure coconut that make deli meat more interesting = fine. At least for me.

  10. says

    SHOCKER! You, like, us, are human?! Say it ain’t so! :)

    Thanks for the clarification and for being honest – and most importantly, what you’ve done for this community. It’s your program – and I hope people trust you are making the best possible decision with the truths and realities you’ve been presented with.

  11. Jane says

    I agree with Kevin – it should be about the ingredients. I’m not familiar with the wraps, but if the ingredients are coconut only – or any whole foods only – why not? Ditto paleo breads, which I also have no familiarity with. Most gluten free breads have crap in them, but if paleo breads don’t, why not?

  12. says

    To me it boils down to:

    (1) If I want to eat a particular food, and I am confident that it is causing me zero problems, then I should just eat that food.

    (2) If I want to eat a particular food, and it does cause me problems, or I’m not sure whether it does or not, then I have to decide whether eating that food is worth the consequences.

    I don’t see value in arguing for or against “allowing” any particular food, because for me the bottom line is plain and unalterable: does it support my wellness or not? Just because something is w30 compliant doesn’t mean it’s guaranteed not to cause me problems. If my body doesn’t respond well to butter, it won’t suddenly start loving butter because butter has been reclassified as w30 compliant.

    To me it’s about self-awareness more than whether or not I’m being properly orthodox. If a food is perfectly w30 compliant but is harmful to my goals in some way, what does it matter how it’s classified? By the same token, if it’s non-compliant but isn’t impairing my progress towards wellness, I’m not going to stress about it. Whole30 is just a means to an end, not the end in itself.

    HAVING SAID THAT…in my opinion, Whole9 should not be endorsing or giving “Whole30 Approval” to any commercial, prepared food product. No matter how benign their ingredient lists may be or what an awesome story they tell on their websites, the fact is that we really have no way of knowing for sure what we are eating. We don’t know what the quality control is, or whether the companies are behaving ethically.

    If w30 promotes awareness and mindfulness about the foods we consume, then we probably should stay away from packaged food items, that are not only unknowable to some extent (since we did not make the food ourselves), but through their convenience tend to reinforce mental laziness about what we put into our mouths.

  13. Daniel says

    I wonder how many people today turned to and searched out “Pure Wraps” as a result of this article that never would have taken this initiative before the article was written. Not a product I use or that is avalable to me. I am OK with this decision. For me, I have so many bigger fish to fry than whether I am using coconut for a wrap at lunchtime.


  14. Jason says

    I think the whole30 approved commercial foods are creating a distraction over what the fundamental concept of the whole30 was created on and while a commercial food can fit the good food standards the bottom line is that we shouldn’t be looking for work arounds! Additionally food should improve ones level of optimal health, we shouldn’t just eat something to eat something because we can doctor it up to make it taste better or find some compliant work around just so that we can “survive 30days”. Additionally ones ability to be compliant is based on their current level of healthy eating, not all people doing the whole30 are coming from a quasi- healthy eating background, I would venture to guess a good percentage of them still eat crappy, processed foods, and by disallowing some whole foods like butter and white potatoes (I believe personally that with the allowing of a sweet potato over a white potato is there is more nutritional value and we should gravitate towards those foods more frequently) is a great stepping stone towards eating healthier.

  15. James says

    This is a great example of why you made that Yahoo list. Enjoy it while it lasts because this whole thing should be ending in a year or two.

  16. KeepTrying says

    I love that you guys are committed to real food and not going down the Paleo treats rabbit hole like so many of the Paleo businesses now seem to be doing (Paleo cake pops? Paleo sugar cones? Give me a break!). Just keep emphasizing real, nutrient dense food and all the fabulous ways to enjoy them. You help so many people to feel better and “get it”. Thanks for all you do.

  17. says

    Wow — so many comments on this one!

    @Robby: We can’t allow plain old butter. The point of the program is to eliminate ALL dairy proteins, and butter has some. Clarifying it removes that issue, however, and doesn’t alter the taste at all (in my opinion) which is why we OK that form of butter/ghee on the program. It’s a small extra step that we feel is important as part of the elimination period. If folks find that plain old butter isn’t an issue, there really isn’t any need to clarify it post-Whole30.

    As for white potatoes, we’ve gone round and round with that one amongst our team. As we’ve explained in our book, It Starts With Food, it’s not about the starch content (although white potatoes aren’t a good choice for everyone), or the skin, or the nutrient content. It’s about the way we eat white potatoes in this country (fries, chips), and how much we rely on white potatoes as our “vegetable” side. If we’re trying to change people’s habits, which is a HUGE part of the Whole30, we can’t have them continuing to eat potatoes (especially fries or chips) with meals, and having that choice push more nutrient-dense options off their plate. So again, it’s arbitrary, but we feel like eliminiating potatoes does more good than harm–in fact, I don’t know many folks who would benefit from eating MORE white potatoes in place of other vegetables, and quite a few who that behavior would harm.

    Thanks for your thoughts, though, and presenting your case in such a detailed and logical fashion.

    @Kevin: The Whole30 will never be about the ingredients. If you want to eat “Paleo” based solely on the technicalities, there are a number of Paleo challenges that allow you honey, pancakes made with almond flour, bread made with coconut flour, and any number of baked goods and treats made with technically “Paleo” ingredients. That is not our program, and will never be our program. And that means that our program is not for everyone, and that is okay. But for the people who come to us with dysfunctional relationships with food, addictions to sugar and carbs and breads and treats (which I believe is the majority of people who decide to take on the Whole30), the “no SWYPO” rule is critical to their successful changing of habits long-term. (Often, it’s the difference between people meeting their goals–especially weight loss–or not as well. Over-indulging in “Paleo” treats is probably the biggest mistake someone new to Paleo can make, for a number of reasons.)

    And remember… these rules are JUST for the 30-day period of the program, not for the rest of your life. People tend to extrapolate our Whole30 rules to mean we don’t think these things should be eaten/done forever, and that is not (and never has been) the case.

    @Dallas and Nicci: That was our thought process, yes. Thanks for sharing.

    @Jason: People absolutely need to take accountability with what they eat during the program, yes. For example, if you are a KFC addict, and can’t imagine going 30 days without a bucket of the Colonel, then you probably shouldn’t be making Paleo fried chicken during your Whole30, because that’s going against the intention of the program–changing your habits and unhealthy relationships with food. But we do lay some basic guidelines for things we think EVERYONE needs to avoid during the 30-day period, and sandwich bread/wraps/tortillas are one of those things. No one needs to eat more bread, and lots of people find avoiding bread products for 30 days terrifying. So that’s one category of foods we rule out explicitly on the program.

    As for a Whole9 Approved and Whole30 Approved split, I think that’s a really good idea, and one that Dallas and I will talk about implementing. Thanks for your feedback.

    @Brittany: You’re spot-on here–it’s our program, and we’ve created the guidelines based on what we believe is the best thing to help the largest number of people. You’re like Dallas (my Dallas, not the above Dallas)–he could give two craps about pancakes, so the idea of not eating them for 30 days isn’t a big deal at all, but if he were to have a pancake on his Whole30, it also wouldn’t wreck him mentally.

    All we ask is that people follow our rules for 30 days. That’s it–just the 30 days. After that, do whatever you want to do! People have often been surprised at how things they didn’t think were issues turned out to be issues after doing a Whole30, so we encourage everyone (even those who could give two craps about pancakes) to do without for the month–but as another poster said, no one is coming to your house to check up on you, and what you do after the 30 day period is entirely up to you.

    @Marguerite: While your experience probably isn’t a super common one, it’s exactly why we eliminate plain old butter on the program. I’m happy that you were able to figure that out! Clarifying butter isn’t that hard, and if it allows you to enjoy the benefits without the pain, it’s a win/win.

    @Casey: We’ve actually had cameras installed at your house, in your car, and at your workplace. Every time you eat something we don’t think is appropriate for the Whole30, an alarm goes off and you accumulate a Dallas-and-Melissa Demerit. YOU DON’T EVEN WANT TO KNOW what will happen if you accumulate 10 D&M Demerits. So back away from the coconut wraps, and don’t say we didn’t warn you.

    @Noelle: Thank you for the kind words, and your support.

    @Jane: Please read the SWYPO link in the article above for a full and complete explanation of why we eliminate foods like Paleo breads, cookies, and brownies on the program.

    @DJ: Apparently, they’re totally out of stock right now, so it’s a good thing you’re not super fired up about trying them.

    @Edward (and @Bobby): I feel like we kind of can’t win with the “processed” products we recommend. If we only recommend whole, real foods, people will say the program is unreasonable and impossible to complete. How can you travel all day on an airplane or hike a full day in the mountains eating steak and broccoli? It’s unreasonable to think that people won’t need a quick-and-easy (but still healthy) snack or meal on the go, like a Primal Pac or RxBar, during their program. However, if we recommend these “processed” (but still high quality foods), people say we’re selling out, and not following our own “real food first” standards… EVEN THOUGH we say a fafillion times that these foods are for emergencies or on-the-go only, and should never replace real food in your everyday diet.

    I guess I feel a little stuck between a rock and a hard place here, so I’ll err on the side of making the program accessible and easy (easier) to complete. And I’ll have you know that we have a personal relationship with every one of our Whole30 Approved companies–and I will personally vouch that they are all good people who share our ethics, philosophies, and integrity. Thanks for your comment.

    @Jason: True that! We ask that people embrace the spirit and intention of the program, and not just the technicalities. Technically, you could eat nothing but bacon, dried fruit, and walnuts and be perfectly Whole30 compliant, but that’s really missing the point of the program. In addition, without the SWYPO rule, you could eat nothing but pancakes, brownies, and donuts (all made with “Paleo” ingredients) and still be compliant… but that’s REALLY missing the point.

    @James: If we can get another year or two like the last five (yeah, we’ve been helping people with our free program for FIVE years now!) I’ll consider it a blessing.

    @Keep Trying: Thanks so much for your support.

    Best to all (and thanks again for your participation here),

  18. says


    You misunderstood.

    My comment was, “it should be about the ingredients.” The ingredients for the coconut wraps are: : Coconut Meat, Coconut Water, Himalayan Salt.

    That’s Whole30 approved last time I checked. Yet, for some reason, you’ve let people talk you out of your own approved foods because of the shape the ingredients were made into. That’s what I said is a mistake.

    There is no comparison between the wraps and something like gluten free bread (which has a ton more ingrdients that likely aren’t Whole30 approved.

    That’s my point. Apples to oranges. It should be strictly about ingredients (not the shape of ingredients).

  19. says

    @Bobby, EXACTLY! I don’t see how this makes sense in any way shape or form considering Whole30 approves RX bars, cricket bars with added sugar (agave), “strangely addictive” sea snacks (a direct contradiction to the statement, “we felt justified in our logic that these wraps weren’t a craving-inducing replacement…”, and so on and so forth.

    There’s about ZERO consistency in this decision.

  20. says

    @Kevin: No, I understood your point completely, and I still disagree with your assessment. There are gluten-free breads, pancake mixes, and donuts (donuts, even!) made from 100% Whole30 approved ingredients. By your logic, those products should be A-OK on the program, because the ingredients are compliant.

    Our view is that those products will never be permitted on the Whole30. In our view, a pancakedonutcookie is still a pancakedonutcookie (psychologically), regardless of the ingredient list–and I can’t see how our program stands a chance to really change people’s lives if we still allow them to eat pancakes, muffins, and donuts for the 30 day period.

    It’s a decision we made long ago, and one we’re sticking with. Again, it’s not right for everyone, but the good news is that there are plenty of other “Paleo challenges” that allow or even promote consumption of those kinds of foods.


  21. says

    I get that — then you have to get rid of the RX bars, agave cricket bars, and so on and so forth. It’s very difficult for people to accept, “this is a decision we made and we realize the program isn’t for everyone” when you conclude that statement with, “except for these things over here we likely get a kickback from.”

  22. Robby says

    Hi Melissa,

    Thanks very much for your response. I appreciate all that you guys do

    In regard to butter, you said the following:

    “We can’t allow plain old butter. The point of the program is to eliminate ALL dairy proteins, and butter has some. Clarifying it removes that issue, however, and doesn’t alter the taste at all (in my opinion) which is why we OK that form of butter/ghee on the program. It’s a small extra step that we feel is important as part of the elimination period. If folks find that plain old butter isn’t an issue, there really isn’t any need to clarify it post-Whole30.”

    So, the second sentence is really the reason for the prohibition, namely that the point of the program is to eliminate all dairy proteins. However, you might go deeper, and ask why that it is the case that you eliminate dairy proteins and the real, deeper reason is that SOME people could be sensitive to it either from an autoimmune perspective, skin perspective or a digestive perspective. Surely you wouldn’t just remove dairy protein, just for the sake of it, if the things I just listed weren’t true.

    However, if that’s really the reason (and I can’t see how it wouldn’t be) the exact same is true of eggs, tomatoes, FODMAPs, eggplants, hot peppers, goitregens. I’m not disputing that people could be sensitive to these things, including butter. What I’m disputing is the rule that just because someone could be sensitive to it it should be eliminated from the Whole 30. That’s a bad rule to follow for normal people. If we followed that rule for normal people then we’d having something like Agalee Jacobs’ 30 day diet where only meats,liquid fats and four vegetables are allowed for 30 days with no fruits, no nuts, no eggs, etc. That’s a fantastic 30 day nutrition protocol for people with very serious digestive issues, but it would be silly to say that’s an appropriate diet for the general population. Like you guys always say, context matters. It’s the reason why you guys have a FODMAP Whole30 and a non-FODMAP Whole30 because people who aren’t sensitive to FODMAPs shouldn’t unnecessarily restrict them. Same thing with an autoimmune Whole30 vs. a regular Whole30. I would argue that more people are sensitive to eggs and egg whites than to the incredibly minuscule amount of casein in butter (the fat to protein ratio in butter is 80:1). So again, this is not to say that certain people won’t be sensitive to butter, but it is to say that the rule “just because someone could be sensitive to it, it should be eliminated from the Whole30″ is a bad rule to follow.

  23. says

    That’s a great point Robby. In my experience, the journey of finding out how certain foods interact with specific people is to lead them through stages of this stuff. It’s simply too much to exclude for people all in 30 days. So you tackle the base change and exclusion of dairy in month one, FODMAPs in two, and so on.

  24. says

    Kevin, last comment here. First, nothing we Whole30 approve contains agave. Nothing. Ever.

    Second, we have zero financial ties with the products in our Whole30 Approved category. Zero. No kickbacks.

    Third, we promote the very few affiliates we have because we believe in their products and services, not because we earn a commission. In fact, every single one was brought into our program first and evaluated by us and our readers before we arranged any sort of financial partnership. We hope our long-standing reputation in this community and the way we’ve always been up front about our business dealings helps others remain confident in our integrity.

    Robby, there are a MILLION things that we could eliminate because people may be sensitive or allergic to them. (Any food, really.) An uber-restrictive elimination protocol is pretty much the GAPS diet, and it’s what we refer people to if they find they aren’t seeing the relief they were hoping to see with just a general “Paleo” protocol. The Whole30 isn’t meant to be a medical elimination program–there are AIPs and other more rigid protocols for that.

    We chose to eliminate grains, legumes, and dairy because these are, in our experience, the “heavy hitters”: the foods that most people have the biggest chance of being sensitive to. (And honestly, we’re kind of rethinking most legumes these days.) Nightshades don’t even come close, in our experience–far more people have issues with dairy than tomatoes, and egg whites don’t make the cut for most folks either. (Remember, the Whole30 is NOT, by definition, an autoimmune protocol, nor was it designed to be.) In addition, many FODMAP issues and other “intolerance” issues clear right up after a Whole30 protocol–and if they don’t, there are other programs that people can try.

    Again, we’re not trying to be all things to all people. We built the best program we can to help the most people get as healthy as possible, but it’s not going to “fix” everyone.


  25. says

    Kevin, thanks for pointing that out.

    Per our article (http://www.whole9life.com/2013/08/chapul/) we are teaming up with them to CREATE a new Whole30 Approved flavor. Obviously, the two flavors they currently make with peanuts and agave are off limits for the program. I have edited their write-up on our Whole30 Approved page to make that clear–of their current offerings, only the Aztec bar is compliant, but we expect the new bar to be released in early 2014.


  26. DamnedFan says

    All you’re doing is alienating people who otherwise might be keen to try Whole30.

    @Jaryn Finch gets it. Really, really gets it. Far more sensible than the WHole30 mods, frankly.

  27. Marguerite says


    You clearly do not get it. If someone is alienated because they have to live without coconut wraps for 30 days, that person would be alienated for all sorts of reasons, because that person is looking for an excuse not to do this. People who do this are looking to improve their health, and living without some convenience foods for 30 days is not a big deal. People who are used to milk and sugar in their coffee, a can of coke every afternoon, a take out pizza every Friday are going to have to give up those things for 30 days and that will be much harder than giving up coconut wraps or other uncommon processed foods.

    Someone who is willing to do that to get healthy is not going to care about petty pissant “controversies” about coconut wraps or any other of the stupid “but it’s paleo” whining that some people choose to do.

    Do it or don’t do it. Stop whining because the program doesn’t fit your solipsistic idea of what should be.

    • Gin Temoshawsky says

      It’s not about being unwilling to give something up, it’s about wanting to have faith in a program to which a person is going to devote themselves completely for 30 days and beyond.

    • Marguerite says

      If you are looking for religious inspiration, there are many churches and charismatics who would be happy to give you a program to have faith in. This is not a religion; it is one method of getting a healthier relationship to food. If you don’t like it, you have the ability to look for a different plan or invent your own. Whole30 works for me and for many thousands of others.

  28. Gin Temoshawsky says

    I understand that line had to be drawn somewhere in what is and isn’t SWYPO. I think you drew the line at the wrong place with this change of heart. If using lettuce, nori, and other greens are okay in place of tortillas and bread then I think so are coconut wraps. By your own statements, the coconut wraps do not mimic tortillas or bread and are their own unique items that are in every way whole30 compliant.

    I myself never used wraps before I came across coconut wraps and don’t feel that I would be enforcing some old habit or mindset that I should be eliminating. I didn’t eat sandwiches or wraps as a matter of fact. Of course I can live without the wraps for 30 days as I naturally go that distance between them anyway just because I tend to go for other ways to eat but I still think this decision is wrong and you were right the first time.

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