What the heck is Paleo?

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A lot of people have been asking me lately about Paleo.  I know a lot of my family and friends have heard me talk about it and probably think I am a little crazy.  That is fine with me because I truly feel the lifestyle of Paleo is for me and that it can work for people if you let it.  I do believe that everyone had a “personal paleo code” because everyone’s body is different and has different tolerances but there is one thing I FIRMLY believe is that everyone should DITCH THE WHEAT! Paleo has so many health benefits, as you can see below (provided by www.primalpalate.com, and it personally has helped me lose weight, feel better, stop having stomach issues, and really regulate my body.  One day I will share my paleo testimonal!

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It took me 3 years of sifting through recipes and blogs to learn about paleo so I am going to answer some of the questions my Instagram and Facebook followers asked.  These are MY answers from MY 3 years on paleo and people might give you different answers but this is personally what has worked for me. Paleo has so much to know and so I am going to include the most valuable information that I have used throughout my journey from bloggers and nutritionists. They are MUCH more knowledgeable than I am so I trust these are good ones to follow.

Question 1:  Can you have Rice?

This is a question that is debated in Paleo circles.  I personally eat very little rice and when I do I make sure it is not a large portion.  But I do like sushi occasionally and some rice is good for carbs when you are working out a lot.  Everyone can tolerate different things, if I eat too much rice I bloat up.  For about 2 years I barely ever ate rice.  I always suggest eliminating it for 30 days and see how you feel, then slowly start adding a little back to see if it works for you.  I think this is a good way to look at most things with Paleo.

Question 2:  Can you eat fruits with a higher glycemic index?

I mainly eat berries when it comes to fruit, and the occasional green apple. In the summer I love me some watermelon and cantaloupe.  But I do not eat bowls of it, just a little with my breakfast, and frozen berries or peaches in my shakes. Sometimes I put a half of banana in my shake as well.  Most paleo people limit fruits because of the sugars, but it is still an acceptable item! Below is a good way to look at Paleo. It has Meat, Seafood and Eggs at the top, right above vegetables.  I think it is very important to also remember to eat a ton of veggies while Paleo, I have made the mistake in the past of not eating enough and missed out on vital nutrition.

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Question 3: Can you have Dairy?

Personally I have a dairy intolerance so I can’t handle dairy.  Most ice cream makes me sick immediately and milk does the same.  I use almond milk or coconut milk as substitutes and do not see a need to go back to regular milk.  Occasionally I have cream in my coffee but that is all and only if I am not at home.  I can handle small amount of grass-fed butter (Kerrygolds non salted is a great option and cheap) and I put that on sweet potatoes or paleo bread sometimes.  As for cheese, I can handle it in SMALL Doses, but did not add this back in until a long time into paleo and still eat it sparingly.  Most people on Paleo do not eat dairy or they only eat grassfed dairy in limited amounts.

Question 4: Did I used the Whole 30 to transition to Paleo?

No I did not, I first went gluten free and then my hubby (boyfriend at the time) told me about Mark from Mark’s Daily Apple and we started to eat a modified Primal diet for awhile and then just kind of transitioned naturally into Paleo.  It was a blessing for a person diagnosed with having a gluten and dairy intolerance to find the Paleo/Primal world of bloggers and books.  I felt like it was MADE for me and helped me a ton in my journey reading about others lives and how they went Paleo.  Yet, I know tons of people who have done Whole 30’s and how it changed their lives! I highly suggest them! I highly suggest looking into it and trying a whole 30.  For some people it is too strict of an entrance into paleo, so I suggest buying the book, 3 Phase Paleo by Stacy and Matt over at the Paleo Parents as this is an amazing resource to slowly transition you and your family.

Question 5: How to Bake on Paleo?

First off I do suggest that you start with very limited or NO paleo “treats” as it will just turn into LOTS of paleo treats (I speak from experience). But once you have this paleo thing down and you have a kids birthday party or a holiday coming up, or you are just craving a chocolate chip cookie like no tomorrow.  Venture into the world of Paleo baking.  I HAVE TO FOLLOW A RECIPE when it comes to baking.  I just don’t do very good if not.  Josh over at Slim Palate has some amazing recipes for baked goods, and if you want a waffle or donut check out the AMAZING Juli from PaleOMG, or check out Danielle from Against All Grain she has some awesome desserts, and so does Kelly from The Spunky Coconut!  If you need a birthday cake or amazing ideas for family gatherings, check out the cute foodie couple Haley and Bill at Primal Palate.  There are so many recipes out there, but these bloggers have my heart!

Okay so there you go! Lots of information and I am sure you are SUPER confused!  And I am SURE I will need to do a follow up to this post.  So please GO OUT AND READ, check out these blogs, try out some recipes and then come back and comment and tell me what your questions are so I can help you with this journey.  It will take time, don’t stress over it, remember the 80/20 rule and just try your BEST!  And as Tony Horton says, “Forget the rest”!

Here are a few more blogs to check out from amazing Paleo People!

Real Food Liz 

Nom Nom Paleo

Rob Wolf, also his blog

Balanced Bites

Nerd Fitness

And to close us out I love this from Liz Wolfe.  She is amazing. Her description of “paleo” or good nutrition is the best I have found!

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