BEFORE PIC: November 2010 AFTER PIC: May 2012
I’ve been following a paleo “diet” for a little over 2 years. The picture above reflects a part of what following this lifestyle has done for me. (SQUIRREL – This is a HUGE step for me to post this pic publicly. <<pats self on back>> GO ME!!!) I’ve been trying to figure out how to incorporate my paleo lifestyle into this blog. With the inadvertent help from a few friends of mine, I think I figured it out. Sooooo………..
Welcome to the first installment of WIKA-Paleo, or “What I Know About” Paleo. 🙂
First, I need to disclaim that although I use the term “DIET” that I DO NOT consider this only a weight loss solution. Obviously, that is how it affected me. However, I use it more in the Webster’s-type definition as in “the foods that you eat.” I think of paleo more as a “solution” or “lifestyle” but I’ll call it diet. That being said…
The Paleo diet is named because of the relation to the paleolithic, think cavemen, era. It is also sometimes referred to as the Caveman or Primal diet. It’s based on the premise that our bodies are genetically predisposed to certain foods – foods that could be found during the caveman’s hunter and gatherer days – and that we don’t do so well with foods that have been processed as we, as a species, have agriculturalized and industrialized our food. (I might have just made one of those words up.)
What this means is that there are YES foods and NO foods. CAVEAT – This list is the most debated thing within the paleo community. So I am sharing the list that *I* follow. Here are the YES foods:
- Meats – Including poultry, fish, and eggs
- Veggies – I’m not including corn and white potatoes here. I’ll soapbox about those some other day.
- Fruits – Most paleo people include SOME but not a lot
- Nuts and seeds
My NO list is:
- Grains – Pasta, cereal, bread… basically anything that has been derived from wheat (I lump corn in this group too) and rice
- Dairy – I consider myself to be “lacto-paleo” which means every once in a while I eat something like feta, goat cheese, or organic heavy cream… but it’s rare that I eat these
- Sugar -Holy crap on a cracker, this one is a biggie. It’s in EVERYTHING. And this is why some paleos avoid fruit as well.
- Anything processed
So by now I expect you are thinking “Well, that just sounds awful” or “What a miserable existence you lead.” Actually, it’s not that bad or difficult, and the benefits FAR outweigh the inconveniences. I do make almost ALL (like 99%) of my own food and that takes a lot of time and planning. But I am able to modify or substitute to recreate just about anything I want to eat (I even found a recipe for paleo-ish “bread” sticks made from cauliflower that tastes so much like Papa John’s cheese sticks that I feel really naughty eating them). And I have learned a lot from others in the paleo blogsphere. Here are some of my favorites:
PaleOMG – Juli was the first paleo person I “met” (meaning I followed/stalked her on her blog). She is HILARIOUS and a little crazy and she swears. I dig her.
Paleo Parents – This couple has found lots of creative ways to incorporate paleo with their entire family which includes 3 young boys. I own both of their cookbooks and HIGHLY recommend “Eat Like A Dinosaur” to anyone who is interested in this and has children. This book has literally changed my life with my family.
Civilized Caveman Cooking Creations – Not only is this site amazing, I have a guilty pleasure here. George is my internet crush. (SQUIRREL – DH calls him my “internet boyfriend.” I got a personal email from George once and was giddy for the better part of a month.) Former Marine, LOVES bacon, does hot yoga, and writes a paleo blog? Be still my heart!
The Clothes Make the Girl – I’m following Melissa religiously right now. I own both of her cookbooks and I quickly adopted her strategy on preparing food for the week and making what she calls “hot plates.” She’s so cool.
The Paleo Mom – Another site that is REALLY helpful for anyone trying to paleo-ize the whole family. She has a PhD in medical biophysics (how cool is that?!?!?) and her blog is very down to earth and relatable. She also does a podcast with the mom from Paleo Parents called The Paleo View.
There are maybe 50 more that I frequent or follow, but I don’t want to overwhelm you.
I plan to write more about my personal paleo journey and share my tips and tricks of how I incorporated it into my life. But until then, if you have any questions or would like more information about something in particular, please let me know and I’ll see what I can do. 😀