I was recently asked why I had moved towards eating paleo. I realized many people probably think that the “Paleo Diet” is just another fad diet like the Atkins diet, South Beach Diet or Keto Diet. For me, what sets my eating habits apart from other diets is that I’ve taken on the view that this is a life style change, not just a lose weight get quick results eating plan. Because I’ve noticed just a vast difference in my health and body, I can tell you this way of life definitely works. Now, is it for everyone? Is there room to make it fit you and your family? By all means!
If your like me, coming to the realization that you can’t eat like the rest of society can be a difficult thing to accept. Over the last four years of my life – after I started realizing my health was suffering, I felt sick and tired many days, my skin was red and irritated and that doctors had no real solution to any of my problems, I come to the conclusion that a diet change was the answer.
Knowing since I was young that dairy effected my stomach, that was obviously the first thing to go.Within the next two years, I decided to go on a six week missions trip to Albania where much of the food I ate had some component of carbohydrates/wheat products. I came home sick as a dog, exhausted, and ready for things to change.
I quickly started eating a super strict diet, slept hours on end, and drank lots of water over the course of the rest of the summer – because of this, I lost 20 pounds and at some level felt more like a “normal” – whoever can definite that for me, props to you! – person. Right after that summer, I left for 3.5 months to live and study abroad in Israel where again, though I ate healthier than when Albania, I still didn’t know exactly what bothered me and would eat hummus and pita almost every day. Coming home from Israel, through the encouragement of my mom, I started researching different eating lifestyles (yes, eating is a lifestyle, not just dieting off and on). With the encouragement of a close friend who was herself having some health issues, we both cut completely out of our diet such things as peanut butter, all wheat products, all sugars (even fruit), dairy products, and legumes (beans). Withing a week I was feeling immensely better. had more energy and no longer felt in a fog.
For the next year I bounced back and forth from eating carbs and products with wheat in them only to realize that every time I did, I felt sick and my skin would look like garbage. (You really are what you eat 😛 ). Finally, two summers ago, I decided I was fed up with this yo-yoing in how I ate and started researching what was called the paleo lifestyle . Broken down, basically what I have selection from is ANY vegetables, meat, seeds and nuts, fruits, and occasionally (like once a day) I’ll sneak in a dairy product (super strict paleo eaters don’t even allow this). I know I had mentioned that dairy bothered me, but I’ve found that in all actuality I’m bothered by other foods more and that if I eat dairy in a very limited moderation, I can handle it just fine. If your wondering if I can still eat baked goods and yummy food, YES, I can! Many nuts and seeds can be made into flour and used as substitutes.
Through my continued exploration of eating paleo, I have felt better than ever before and I hope to share with you through this blog the freedom of getting in touch with your body and enjoying life more fully!