I think that what is attracting me to this diet is the simplicity. You really can’t argue that a diet free of processed foods is better for your body! I like that there really is no complicated formula or point system to follow, no tracking – just eating the right foods! The way nature intended. The Paleo Diet has been interesting to me for a while, the notion of relying less on processed and packaged foods is liberating!
Listen up: Skipping meals will not make you lose weight faster. If a hectic day makes a sit-down meal impossible, stash an energy bar or a piece of fruit in your car or tote, keep snacks in your office desk drawer, and make a point of getting up to grab a nosh — anything that will keep you from going hungry! Going long periods of time without food does double-duty harm on our healthy eating efforts by both slowing down your metabolism, and priming you for another binge later in the day. (Think: You’ve skipped breakfast and lunch, so you’re ready to takedown a whole turkey by dinner!) Make it your mission to eat three meals and two snacks every day, and don’t wait longer than three to four hours without eating. Set a “snack alarm” on your phone if needed.
Another huge reason why you might be fighting an uphill battle with weight loss is nutrient partitioning. Remember that this refers to whether an individual calorie gets burned for energy or stored as fat, and it requires healthy levels of hormones like insulin and leptin. For weight loss, you’re obviously hoping it gets burned for energy. Here’s how to make that happen:
“While the diet encourages people to cut down on alcohol, and may appeal to dieters who struggle with a lower fat diet, the amount of processed meat, red meat and saturated fat recommended on this plan is against current healthy eating guidelines. A diet high in saturated fat may increase your risk of heart disease.
But you don’t have to do it alone. Talk to your doctor, family and friends for support. Ask yourself if now is a good time and if you’re ready to make some necessary changes. Also, plan smart: Anticipate how you’ll handle situations that challenge your resolve and the inevitable minor setbacks.
I also found it really important not to have 100% off-limits foods. While I did move toward a paleo-esque diet, too much black-and-white thinking and rules derailed me in a hurry! They still do. I can do ultra-strict diets for health reasons, but I tend to put on a little weight from feeling deprived.
There are variations of this diet that says you can substitute beef steaks for fish or chicken. Yes, that’s true and those two will give you as much proteins as a steak, except not the same amount of iron, which by day 5 and 6 is very needed for energy.
A few of my friends got me involved with Paleo last year and it’s one of the better diets I have been on. A little hard to keep up with all the time, especially when you’re out and about as much as I am with my job, but definitely one that gets results
“I used to skip breakfast, but now I never go without. I always eat about 300 calories of a healthy mix of protein and whole grains. My go-to meal: a sandwich with natural peanut butter and apple butter. It keeps my hunger down so I less throughout the day. In a little over a year, I’ve shed 65 pounds.” —Bo Hale, Tulsa, OK
I would have to say however, that if you’re hoping to lose weight I would recommend cutting out the Paleo desserts until you’ve reached your weight loss goal. Try adding fresh fruit in the place of the desserts, and then only have desserts as an occasional treat. Many of the desserts are high in natural sugars that spike your insulin levels just before you go down for hours of inactivity.
It may seem really silly to think that more carbs might help you lose weight, but if you’re not getting enough, you’re stressing your body out. Cortisol levels are going to get all wonky, and we already know what that means. Not enough carbs often leads to insomnia for people, or crazy carb cravings that make people binge (what’s the point of going super duper low carb if you’re just going to binge on non-Paleo pie anyway?).
Don’t blame yourself if you aren’t perfect. If you once fail at your attempt to curtail your overeating, it doesn’t mean you are a failure at weight control and that you should just give up. Accept that you made a poor choice, but don’t let that poor choice influence the rest of your meal plan. The same holds true with exercise. Skipping a few workouts doesn’t mean you can’t get back on track. Weight control does not involve making perfect choices all the time; rather it’s about attempting to make good health choices more often than poor ones.