I’m beyond flattered at the amount of support I’ve received since starting the Paleo diet. A few friends have sent personal messages asking for tips on how to get started, and where to go for inspiration and motivation. I decided to make a little Beginners Manual of sorts for those who are interested in giving it a shot. I am not going to “reinvent the wheel,” so I will provide lots of links to what I have found helpful.
First Step–Why? Why Go Paleo?
-Before making such a huge lifestyle change, it’s important to understand why. My motivation is to heal my stomach so when I read about how grain, dairy and sugar hurts my body, it makes me never want to consume it again. Basically,
“The Paleo diet is the healthiest way you can eat because it is the ONLY nutritional approach that works with your genetics to help you stay lean, strong and energetic! Research in biology, biochemistry, Ophthalmology, Dermatology and many other disciplines indicate it is our modern diet, full of refined foods, trans fats and sugar, that is at the root of degenerative diseases such as obesity, cancer, diabetes, heart disease, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, depression and infertility. – Robb Wolf
If you’re wondering why the Paleo diet may be a good idea for you, also check out the following links:
I suggest starting with The Paleo Solution, by Robb Wolf, which will give you a huge amount of very detailed and specific information on WHY this diet works for those who are looking to heal their gut and free themselves from things such as rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, depression and infertility.
Next Step–How? As in, “How can I possibly give up grains, dairy, legumes, and SUGAR?!”
People keep commenting on my will-power and self-control, which is so crazy, considering the first thing I said to my Dr. when she suggested Paleo was, “I can’t do this. I have no self-control when it comes to food.” She looked me square in the eye, and said, “Stop. Yes you do. Yes you do. You can do this.” It was kind of scary, actually, and really got my attention. Since then I really haven’t looked back. I got a little discouraged when she told me to give up eggs, tomatoes, and onions for up to six weeks, but now I know why and wish I would’ve stuck with it longer since I am still having some lingering issues with those foods.
The point is–it’s not as hard or overwhelming as it sounds. Focus on what you CAN have, (bacon! bacon! bacon!) not what you can’t. Over time you will start to see pasta and bread totally differently. (Cheese was another story for me). After a few days I started to think of wheat and grains as “filler foods.” It’s just there to fill you up, yet most of it has absolutely no taste unless you coat it with something else, like sauce, spreads, and seasonings.
Finally–Where? Where do I begin?
If you don’t have time to read the entire Paleo Solution book right now, start with the blog post, The Beginners Guide to the Paleo Diet . It has funny Lego animated pictures to tell the Paleo story.
I will add more soon, but this is a good start for those interested in going Paleo!