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Don’t you get hungry eating Paleo?
How can you get enough carbs for all your workouts if you can’t eat bread?!
Isn’t it hard eating out as a Paleo eater?
Do you really eat raw meat like a cave person?!
Answers: No… Easily… No… Heck no!
Paleo is not a “diet.” It’s not a low carb eating plan, just a “different carbs” eating plan. Eating out Paleo is remarkably easy, moreso than being a vegan or vegetarian in many cases. And we cook our meat, thank you very much!
So what are the staples that make up a typical week of Paleo eating? They are actually pretty simple, and really delicious! So simple and delicious – and good for you – that you can basically say buh-bye to counting calories, fat grams and carb grams. I haven’t counted any of that since going Paleo over two years ago, and am leaner and stronger than I ever was for all those years of obsessing over every little calorie.
Paleo eating – and the Paleo lifestyle, should you choose to embrace it – is all about feeding your body with real unprocessed foods, moving often and sleeping adequately. Basically listening to your body’s natural rhythms and signals.
I eat LARGE volumes of food as a Paleo eater, but counting calories isn’t necessary because the food is nutritionally dense but not calorically dense.
Here’s a handy “Is That Paleo?” guide to help as you consider taking on Paleo eating. Try a week or so to see how it feels! You might just love it – and look and feel better.
Proteins: Tofu? Tempeh? Nope. Just the REAL deal proteins, none of that soy-based, manufactured stuff. Think grass feed beef, organic hormone-free chicken, fish, and other meats like pork, lamb, venison. A truly affordable Paleo protein is eggs. And that means the WHOLE egg. The yolk holds most of the nutrition! When I get busy, pre-hard boiled eggs like the ones from Eggland’s Best are a great on-the-go option to create a breakfast or a snack or to place over a big bowl of salad greens. Eggland’s carries both organic and cage-free eggs as well. I use those for omelets, veggie scrambles, etc.
Veggies and fruits: Eat ALL the veggies you want as a Paleo eater. No, seriously. No one ever became overweight eating broccoli, brussels sprouts, spinach and cucumbers. Paleo eaters often are more moderate in the fruit we eat, opting for things like berries (think “What would a caveman hunt and gather?” Berries!) and eating more veggies than fruit. I eat lots of berries, citrus and do use frozen pineapples and bananas for my Paleo smoothies.
Healthy fats: Avocados, nut butters like almond and cashew, coconut oil and olive oil plus ghee (clarified butter in which the dairy portion has been removed) are all staples of Paleo eating and cooking. The body NEEDS these healthy fats, and they help keep you full and regulate the hormones and hunger signals.
Grains: Nope. We don’t eat them. This includes pasta, rice, couscous, breads, crackers, etc. They are the result of the farming age, post-“caveman,” to keep it simple. And for people with arthritis and other inflammatory diseases, the grains can be a real irritant. Also for anyone with a gluten intolerance, avoiding grains is best anyway.
Legumes: Think beans and peanuts. These are not part of Paleo eating. They can also be a major gut irritant.
Dairy: Again, nope. There is a branch of Paleo-inspired eating known as “Primal” that incorporates moderate amounts of high-quality dairy (goat sources, often, instead of cow-based dairy that is the hallmark of agricultural mass production)
Sugars: Paleo eaters get their “sweet” from natural sources like pure maple syrup and honey. And ideally, these are eaten in moderation. As in, rarely.
Alcohol: Wine (made from grapes, a fruit) and hard cider (made from apples) as well as tequila are what Paleos tend to drink when it’s adult beverage time.
So hopefully this helps! And guess what? We Paleo eaters veer away from the “cave” sometimes, too. If I want a piece of cake or a cookie, I eat it. But often I make it with almond or coconut flour, which are Paleo-friendly, to keep my stomach and body feeling good!