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You may remember a few posts back when I talked about my new foray into the healthier way of eating know as the Paleo Diet. Well, I am happy to say I am still going strong and feeling noticeably better. Yay!
My Facebook buddies are also noticing that I am trying new things and experimenting with new recipes. They are my biggest cheerleaders and I am grateful for them.
The hardest thing for me to say “no” to? CHEESE. You’d think that, as a lactose intolerant person, I would be avoiding cheese but I ate it daily and told myself “cheese doesn’t bother me.” I can now call B.S. on that…but dang I miss my cheese! There are some alternatives, like GO Veggie! Dairy Free Grated Topping, Parmesan, that I’d like to try and I am sure there are others. IN the meantime I am doing my best to Just Say NO to dairy and so far it’s been pretty easy.
Tips for Paleo Lifestyle
The Paleo diet and lifestyle require the use to eat foods that are as close to their natural state as possible. Grass fed meats, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds are the mainstay of the diet plan. Many paleolithic eaters will steer clear of milk and definitely put sugar, processed foods and sweets on the no-no list.
Starting a nutritional plan like this one can present a few challenges, especially if you were used to shopping in the center of the store and not around the perimeter where the dairy, eggs, meats and produce are kept. Let’s take a look at some tips to help you get started living a more natural and healthier lifestyle.
1. The world won’t come to an end if you slip or ‘cheat’! You have made the decision to eat a more healthy diet but if you slip up, don’t chuck the whole thing and go back to the way you were eating before. You slipped, every one will. Now get back on that horse and try again!
2. Start slow and keep moving forward. You might be the type of person that goes cold turkey or you might want to phase this diet in slowly. Eliminate the no-no foods one a time from your diet. You could stop buying one each week to get used to not eating them and stave off a really bad week of no processed foods.
3. Keep things simple, especially at first. Cooking a gourmet meal on the paleo plan will require a few different ingredients and potentially a different skill set in the kitchen. Instead, start out by keeping the meals simple, with a meat, vegetables, some fruit and a healthy fat. Move into the gourmet meals as you get used the grocery shopping and meal preparation.
NOTE: for now I am avoiding try follow any sort of pre-made meal plan. I need to spend time discovering what I like, what I can easily cook and what I can afford (no lie; eating healthier is going to be a bit more expensive…but worth every penny).
4. Get support! Don’t try to change your entire nutritional plan on your own. Find other people, whether friends or online support groups, where you can exchange ideas and talk out challenges.
5. Get rid of the stuff in your home that you can’t eat. It is just way to tempting to grab a couple of crackers when you feel like snacking than a handful of nuts or seeds, especially when they are handy! I made some Paleo glazed pecans and they are my go-to snack right now.
6. Keep the refrigerator stocked with the foods that you can eat. Clean them when you come home from the store and make them very accessible. For instance, when you buy grapes, clean them, remove the stems and put them in an open bowl in the refrigerator so you can grab a few when you open the door. They are sweet, nutritious and taste great. Clean your celery and pack it in ice water to keep it fresh longer. Wash the apples and other fruits.
7. Keep a several hard-boiled eggs in the refrigerator for snacks, salads or lunch. Fried eggs for lunch or dinner is a nice change from the regular dinner options too!
8. Find a snack you enjoy and keep it handy, especially one you can bring with you on the go. Individually pack a trail mix from nuts, seeds and dried fruits, or keep sliced and cleaned celery.
9. Drink, drink and then drink again! One problem that most people share is that they get dehydrated long before they are thirsty and drink. We are a world of chronically dehydrated people and it’s bad for our bodies. AVOID POP (soda). Do your best to focus on water, tea and organic milks like cashew or almond,
10. Bacon taste good. Bacon is easy to make and store in the fridge. Bacon is paleo! As I always say, “Bacon is the Worlds Most Perfect Food.”
Tips for Paleo Lifestyle: RESOURCES
Chriskresser: 6 Tips for Successful Weight Loss on a Paleo Diet
Brooklyn Paleo: 10 Tips for Going Paleo
10 Tips for Going Paleo
Ultimate Paleo Guide: 56 Tips to Starting the Paleo Diet
Paleo nonPaleo: 46 Paleo Tips Anyone Can do