Despite still feeling young as I entered my forties, I’d been slowly gaining weight over the years. I realized I had to do something to stop that trend. The paleo diet seemed an excellent solution, and a logical one. It makes sense believing that certain foods available in the modern world are not made for bodies that were developed over thousands of years as hunters and gatherers.
A major advantage which drew me into trying the paleolithic diet was that I wouldn’t have to worry about counting calories. I like to eat, and would feel burned on a diet that would limit my food intake. Though I was about 25 pounds overweight, I felt healthy and strong and didn’t want to lose that feeling while I was losing weight. Another plus for me was that the diet encouraged the consumption of fruits and vegetables. Since learning the importance of the high number of veggie servings in a day (I’ve seen suggestions of up to ten!), I had already been incorporating them in my everyday life. I’m a firm believer all those vegetables aid in my health and well-being. However, some foods had to go.
I reluctantly had to eliminate my beloved cereals, but that made it easier to get rid of processed sugar since I only really used it at breakfast. I never drank much soda or sugary drinks so that was easy to quit. I had to stop eating popcorn, which I would snack on several times a week, but that also eliminated my use of oil. I was never big on pasta, though I felt a little concerned at giving up brown rice. I especially like adding raw vegetables to rice, and those dishes really fill me up, so I cheat a little with that grain. Since I indulge myself with the rice, I don’t miss my cornflakes or raisin bran as much. I probably was only drinking about a cup of milk per day before the diet, so I just kept that the same.
I quit eating cheese, but as a life-long milk drinker, I believe the health benefits outweigh any faults in that small amount of dairy. I was able to keep many of the foods I was already enjoying such as poultry and fish. I don’t eat red meat so I didn’t have to concern myself with grass-fed over grain-fed animals. I appreciate the many varieties of nuts, but I had to force myself to cut down on peanut butter. Happily, I started eating eggs again, though I try to limit myself to one a day because of their high cholesterol. With so much food to choose from, I avoided getting bored with my meals and discovered some interesting combinations. Fruit and vinegar are not incompatible in a vegetable salad, fish in an omelette can be quite tasty, and potato salad with olive oil and avocado became one of my favorite side-dishes.
I reached my weight goal within seven months thanks to the paleo diet and exercise. I continue to follow its guidelines, but I don’t consider myself on a “diet”. Instead, I believe I’m utilizing the proper foods to enjoy a healthy life, and a happy one.
About the author
This has been a guest post from one of the webmasters at Australia’s Eat Stop Eat website, if you would like to know more about the program, why not check out the website?