Dear Paleo, Sometimes I hate you.

ok, so who doesn’t feel this way at least part of your day?! So let me remind all of us WHY we are torturing ourselves (because I forgot why last night!)…

Studies have shown that eating Paleo (for just 2 weeks!):
–improves blood pressure
–lowers plasma insulin
–reduces cholesterol

Paleo is a great way to get stronger, faster, leaner, and improved recovery time between workouts.

The PROS (if you need more):
–no processed foods
–meat/fish are wild-caught (not farm-raised or full of antibiotics)
–you eat way more fruits, veggies, nuts, and seeds

The CONS (besides you hate it):
— athletes – especially endurance athletes (like marathon runners) will need more carbs.
— it’s restrictive
— it’s hard to do when out to eat (although improving)
— you hate it

Listen, here’s the deal. It’s perfectly fine to make room for foods you love, but you know are not optimal for your health…but how often? Daily? I’m not so sure. What about a percentage? Like 80%/20% of the time. 80% of the time I eat Paleo, 20% I don’t worry about it. Probably ok if trying to maintain your weight, but trying to lose weight? How about 99%/1%?

What are your thoughts??? Please comment.
(Linda, this one was for you!)

Several of you have asked, “Is ____ paleo?”

Ultimate Paleo Guide – click here!
But be careful… a couple things…
You won’t like all that you read here. It’s a pretty accurate description of paleo that is agreed upon by numerous authors, websites, and researchers.

Here’s the thing though…they do refer to it as a “paleo diet”, which I hate. Diet implies that this is something short-term that I probably won’t stick with.

I want you to experiment this week, try hard-core paleo, and then ask yourself, “What can I live with long term?” Some of us just want a few beans, and if they don’t upset your stomach, go for it. For others, having a potato is important. Just recognize that it’s starchy, and eat them in moderation. But the thing is that many of us eat without thinking too much, the majority of the time. Use this week to force yourself to think about what you normally reach for and ask yourself, “Why?” or “Do I need it?”

For me, each time I do this, I learn a new way to eat, and usually I love the new way more! And I never would have discovered the healthier, new way if I hadn’t done a boot camp like this. Because on my own, I’m pretty busy – too busy to research my food and question it, and content to be that way!

For me, first I cut sugar out of my coffee a few years ago, but swore I was never giving up creamer or half and half. Then I tried coconut creamer and thought it was ok…eventually I went back to half and half again, but patted myself on the back because hey – still no sugar. Then I tried the bulletproof coffee that I posted over the weekend and I’ve been in love with that for about 2 months…I may not ever go back to Starbucks…that’s how good I think that is – would rather make my own at home. Maybe I should open a dairy-free coffee shop? and serve juices and smoothies too???!

How about you???
Post comments so others may benefit!

Moderation and sticking with it are key. Let’s don’t get too extreme here…

ok, so I’ve been doing these types of boot camps for two years now. Here’s what I’ve learned:

no sugar is hard. very hard. but honey,maple syrup, and fruit are really GREAT replacements!
not waiting until I’m starved to try to plan a meal or snack (especially at work!). When I’ve planned in advance and have a fridge full of healthy yumminess, it’s all good and I feel successful.
Sunday is the day I must plan my meals and cook what I need to for the work week ahead. It’s a ritual I now look forward to while football is on.

Lastly, once you plan your meals for the week, you will probably find that this makes life so much easier. Choose foods that you like and enjoy, so that you are much more likely to stick with it when boot camp week is over. Each time I’ve done this, I’ve kept a new eating strategy/food in my life, that I have grown to love. (Coconut oil is the latest, greatest thing for me in the past year, which I never thought I’d say, because I don’t like coconut!)

ALL THINGS IN MODERATION.

CHOOSE A PLAN YOU CAN STICK WITH AND ENJOY! (if you don’t enjoy it, you will throw it right out the window next week)

What Can I Eat ???

So you have got to food shop this weekend and get ready for next week Рespecially those lunches and snacks.  Avoid falling into pitfalls by being ready and prepared. Get tired of eating the same thing?

Try some of the recipes here on this blog (please – they are tried by real people – me and my friends!)

Try some of the recipes from Health-Bent. ¬†That girl really knows what she is doing. ¬†We have loved every recipe we have tried. ¬†Here’s what to buy and eat :

According to http://www.health-bent.com/about (which I heart!):

Meat and Eggs Beef, pork, lamb, bison, poultry, eggs, fish, other seafood and shellfish, game meats, organ meats (and less common animal meats all work here)

Vegetables Mostly non-starchy and some starchy; potatoes, sweet potatoes (and yams), celery root, cassava root (tapioca), plantains, winter squashes

Nuts and Approved Fats Enjoy nuts moderately, macadamias are the best; approved non-dairy cooking fats include tallow, duck fat, lard, olive oil, high oleic sunflower oil, palm oil and palm shortening

Fruit and Added Natural Sweeteners Berries and cherries are the best; we use coconut sugar***, honey, maple syrup, etc.

***Dairy Grass-fed (and raw) when possible; heavy cream, butter, and cheeses

*** These are new categories if you did the last 4 boot camps with us.  After more research, I think each person needs to decide what his/her own body can tolerate  and/or what is an irritant to his/her system.  I also really like the thinking of Megan McCullough Keatley (Author of Primal Cravings) and her more realistic approach to this thing called PALEO. :)

Best thing in my pantry: COCONUT OIL!

Coconut oil

ok, my favorite thing in my pantry right now! I try to buy it at Trader Joe’s or TJMaxx, because it’s usually way cheaper than the grocery store. ¬†My #1 use is for cooking. ¬†Were you around about 5-6 years ago when Dr. Oz said that Olive Oil wasn’t meant for high heat cooking? ¬†I was shocked. ¬†What did he mean?! ¬†Well, here’s a great oil for higher heat cooking, as well as mosturizer, coffee creamer (yes, really), and the 100 other uses listed below (well, 20 here, and 80 more if you go to Wellness Mama’s website). ¬†Run out and get some!

Uses for Coconut Oil from Wellness Mama

  1. In cooking as a great oil with a high smoke point. Great for baking, stir-frys or as a dairy free replacement to butter.
  2. Taken supplementally for daily energy
  3. As a coffee creamer when emulsified into coffee (The only way I’ll drink coffee)
  4. On the skin as a basic lotion
  5. In homemade lotion bars for soft, smooth skin
  6. In homemade deodorant or deodorant bars
  7. As an eye-makeup remover
  8. As a cloth diaper safe diaper cream (just rub on baby’s bottom)
  9. In making your own Remineralizing Toothpaste
  10. To lighten age spots when rubbed directly on the skin
  11. To prevent stretch marks during pregnancy
  12. To support healthy thyroid function
  13. In homemade Mayo without the high PUFA vegetable oils
  14. To help increase sun tolerance and avoid burning
  15. As a naturally SPF 4 sunscreen
  16. In homemade lotion recipes
  17. To get rid of cradle cap on baby- just massage in to head, leave on for a few minutes and gently rinse with a warm wash cloth
  18. Topically to kill yeast or yeast infections
  19. As a delicious tropical massage oil
  20. It’s high Lauric acid and MCFA content helps boost metabolism

See 80 more uses at http://wellnessmama.com/5734/101-uses-for-coconut-oil/