Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Paleo 101

I've been getting lots of questions about my paleo experience, why I eat like this and what I eat. So here it is. 
There are many different definitions of paleo out there. I go by this one and this one.   

I started eating paleo in December of 2013 because I was down to my goal weight but wasn't feeling "good." I was waking up with a flat tummy in the morning and by the end of the day-was bloated, felt stuffed and big and I didn't like that. As well, am I concerned that because cancer is now in my family history, I need to be careful and aware of that. Around this time I started hearing about paleo along with the benefits and how I was harming my body. 

I really started eating paleo because I try and eat non-processed food like the obvious chips, cookies, package factory foods and was shocked to become aware that bread and milk is processed. I can go on and on about how milk is processed but I'll let you read it here .

 I did 14 days of paleo eating (with Whole30) and lost 3.2 pounds and 6 inches in my first week. Then Christmas hit and I sorta followed paleo that month. 

Now, my paleo eating is great throughout the week and I allow myself one meal, usually on the weekend of non-paleo foods. Pizza, fries etc. Some will say not to allow "cheat" meals as it causes your body to keep craving those foods and you will never truly stop craving them and others will say do it as it gives your body a taste of what bad food does to us. Believe me-when I eat non-paleo foods the next day I feel sick, tired and really really bloated. This only makes me realize how harmful foods can be to our bodies and insures I get back on the good eating wagon. 

What do I eat on a typical day?
A typical day for me is waking up at 5:45am to work out and then placement and off to work in the evening. 

On the bus-banana
After working out- a hardboiled egg and a handful of nuts and black coffee
Lunch-usually sweet potato, a vegetable and some fruit
Before work-glass of almond milk or Larabar
Dinner-two veggies and a protein ---easy!

If I'm waking up at a normal time I usually just have an egg and banana for breakfast. 

What are my favourite snacks?
I've learned the hard way that on you need to carry good foods with you or have them on hand. I can't tell you how many times I haven't been prepared and found myself eating some alphabets cereal. 

My favourite snacks are nuts, Larabars (especially the apple one) since they are totally natural. I just read the back of one of them- ingredients are dates, raisins, walnuts/almonds and dried apples.  

How do you eat out?
Easy-when I'm on a date night and want to eat paleo, my go to place is Chipotle. Just get the salad. Add in any meat they have, some salsa, guacamole, and veggies. No beans or dressing. It's amazing. 

This sounds hard. It must be?
Nope, eating like this is so simple. I thought dinner would be hard but instead of the typical protein, veggie, starch; now it's protein, veggie, veggie. So easy. 

The only thing I found hard was the first week. Its tough, I'll be honest. You crave everything and get moody. Some get headaches but it goes away. Its your body detoxing and not used to eating this way. Just keep with it and it gets better. 

What are your go-to recipes?
I like recipes that are easy to make, not a lot of ingredients or time in the kitchen. 

For breakfast when I don't want an egg, I'll have already made some paleo cereal. Add in some almond milk and it's 100% like cereal.  

For lunch, I love a big salad but this is an easy meal to make the night before and heat up the next day. 

Dinner-really is the easiest. Protein, veggie, veggie-for me. Sometimes when I want something "carby" I'll add in a sweet potato. 
This is easy too and doesn't take long. some ground beef, onions, mushrooms, in a bell pepper. 

My tips to you
-Planning is your friend. Do weekly grocery shopping based off what you'll eat that week. 
-Use google-I used to run to google when I had question. Just a simple search can clear anything up.
-Pinterest has thousands of meals. I have hundreds (follow: lifeofsarahh)
-Keep snacks handy so you're not tempted. 
-Do the whole30 challenge. See how foods really do affect us. You can do anything for 30 days. 

Don't worry about what people say. My Gramma thought I was starving myself and got very offended when I told her why I'm doing it. Now she is very interested in paleo. There ya go. 
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