Some times we just need to reset our mind and body. Summer is almost upon us. When I think of summer, I think of the lake and me being in a swim suit 😛 Let’s just say I can definitely do some revisiting on my nutrition plan. I would like to remind us all of what the Paleo diet really is and why it works.
I am going to give you the cliff notes of the paleo diet just to reset our minds:
Robb Wolf’s definition of the Paleo diet: The paleo diet is the healthiest way you can eat because it is the ONLY nutritional approach that works with your genetics to help you stay lean, strong and energetic! Research in biology, biochemistry, Ophthalmology, Dermatology and many other disciplines indicate it is our modern diet, full of refined foods, trans fats and sugar, that is at the root of degenerative diseases such as obesity, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, depression and infertility.
Ok…so what can I eat?
- Lean Meats
- Nuts & Seeds
- Healthy Fats (coconut oil, almond butter etc)
What shouldn’t you eat:
- Processed Foods and Sugars
Why eat paleo? Simple…
1. It reduces your risk of any disease. Research suggest that it reduces cancer, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and pain from autoimmunity. It also reduces your body weight!
2. It improves blood lipids, weight loss, mood swings, energy, brain function, blood pressure, body fat percentage, gym performance, work performance, family desires. The last two I listed may sound kinda of a far stretch, but it’s true! Think about it. When you feel good about yourself and you are not tired and cranky you may actually want to perform better at work and play with your kids!
Frequent questions that I get?
1. Does it work? Ask yourself this….is what you are doing working? If not, what is it going to hurt to try the Paleo diet?
2. Is this just a fad or a life-long diet that a person can follow? No it is not a fad and yes you can follow this the rest of your life. I personally like the rule of 80/20. 80 % paleo and 20% off limit foods. That seems to work for me. But, you have to find what works for you.
3. What about if I am diabetic? The Paleo diet REVERSES the signs and symptoms of insulin resistant, Type 2 diabetes.
4. What about calcium….if I can’t have dairy where do I get my calcium from? Great question! Did you know that almond milk has more calcium than cows milk? Did you know that fruits and vegetables have a ton of calcium in them!! There are many other ways of getting in your calcium than cows milk.
5. How much can I eat? Listen to your body! A good start is by using your hand as a measurement. A fist size for fruit, palm size for protein, thumb size for fats and unlimited amount of vegetables per meal. Now, keep in mind that you are listening to your body! So if you are starving all the time…EAT more! But, also remember that if you are resetting your body and your body has been living off of off limit foods then the first few weeks you are going to be hungry because your body is trying to figure out where to get its energy. So just hang in there. But, as a rule of thumb, if your hungry eat. Also, if you are working out, you need to eat more. A lot of people who start this “diet” (I don’t like to use that word because it is not a diet, but for the sake of this blog I will use it) think that a diet is not eating! This is sooo not true! You need to eat and more than you think you do!
6. How often should I eat? According to the paleo gurus you should eat when ever you are hungry! Some people function better if they eat every 2 hours while others function better if they eat 3 times a day. Bottom line…eat when you are hungry! Do not starve yourself!
7. If I work out, when should I eat protein? You should have half protein (of your regular meal size amount) and you can also have half of a fat too (of your regular meal size) shorty before your work out. Do not eat fruit or carb-dense vegetables. Immediately after your work out, eat a meal size easily digested protein. Do not eat any fat because fat slows down digestion of foods and after your work out you want as much nutrients to your muscles as possible.
The following are some really good resources that I have found to be helpful:
What is the Paleo diet? By Robb Wolf
The Definitive Guide to the Primal Eating Plan– How and why to eat Primal.
The 21-day Challenge by Mark Sisson. What to eat, what not to eat, how to exercise, game-changing behaviors.
Whole30 basics of how much to eat and what to eat.
The Ultimate Paleo Guide– This link has a HUGE list of what you can eat! There is even an App you can download on your phone!!!
Until next time…. reset your mind and body!