If you worry about the effect of modern living on your waistline, you may want to try eating like your ancestors. That’s the theory behind the Paleo diet, which goes back to a time before agriculture when humans were still hunters and gatherers.
More than 10,000 years ago in the Paleolithic Era, life expectancy was only about 25 years, but there was a very low prevalence of obesity. While the research on the Paleo diet is limited, most experts agree that this lifestyle has both pros and cons. These tips will help you navigate this unique diet.
Following a Paleo Diet
Eliminate junk food. Movie theaters didn’t serve popcorn in the Stone Age. In fact, movie theaters weren’t in existence. Getting rid of refined sugar and carbohydrates may be the most challenging and beneficial aspect of the Paleo diet.
Cut back on salt. Most Americans eat too much salt, and the biggest culprit is processed foods. You’ll easily stay under the limit with this diet.
Consume more produce. Another healthy thing about this regimen is the emphasis on fruits and vegetables. Most advocates of the Paleo diet extend plenty of leeway for super foods like broccoli and kale since they’re close to the wild versions of long ago.
Select lean meats and fish. It’s easy to go overboard eating this much meat. Have fish for breakfast and shop for strip steak and extra lean ground turkey.
Get your Vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiencies are possible if you forego all dairy products and fortified cereals. Spend time in the sunshine or take Vitamin D supplements so that your body can still perform important functions, such as protecting your bones.
Exercise. Even if your day job and mortgage rule out the option of becoming a nomad, you can shake up your sedentary life. Join a gym or ride your bike to the office.
Live a greener life. Lots of people rave about the Paleo diet because it helps them feel more connected to nature. You’re also likely to produce less garbage when your food doesn’t come in individual packages.
Balance your macronutrients. Overall, there are significant discrepancies between the Paleo diet and government recommendations. Going Paleo is a little high in fat and protein and extremely low in carbohydrates.
Add in dairy products. To get more calcium and Vitamin D, some people continue eating foods in the dairy category. Low-fat and non-fat products may help you lose weight too.
Decide on grains. Likewise, you may choose to keep room in your life for whole grains. There’s a big distinction between brown rice and white rice when it comes to nutritional value.
Schedule cheat days.If eliminating whole food groups and eating less than half the daily recommendation for carbohydrates raises doubts for you, you can make additional adjustments. Take one or two days off each week and eat with fewer restrictions. Or pick one meal a day that isn’t Paleo. For example, you can serve oatmeal for breakfast each day.
Draw up a budget. Even if your body is on board for a strict Paleo diet, you may find that it can become expensive. Filling your cart with fresh produce, fish, and meat can lead to big grocery bills. Try growing your own vegetables and keep an eye out for sales.
You can learn a lot from a caveman. Consuming less junk food and more fiber is bound to be good for you. Modify the Paleo diet to suit your individual needs and talk with your doctor if you have any questions or concerns.
Have you tried the Paleo diet? What was your experience? Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section, below!
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If you’re sick of eating like a caveman on the Paleo Diet, you may be interested in the Werewolf Diet that celebrities like Madonna and Demi Moore are supposedly following. (No, seriously!)
This new fad is based on the theory that the moon pulls the water in our bodies the same way it governs ocean tides. While this might be a little more poetic than factual, followers are advised to eat based on moon cycles. It’s basically a one day fast plus vegetables with various plans for every lunar phase.
A brief summary of the Werewolf Diet, courtesy of U.S. News:
“The only thing that makes sense about this diet is that if you have a very full moon, you may need to trim down,”says registered dietitian Bonnie Taub-Dix, who’s also an Eat+Run blogger. “Any diet that promotes fasting, cleanses or deprivation to this extent is not going to last.”
Yet advocates insist that the moon influences the water in our bodies, the same as it does the tides of the ocean. Humans are made up of about 60 percent water, and the thinking goes that when the moon is full or in a new phase, there’s a gravitational pull that affects how much water weight you gain or lose. As the website Moon Connection explains: “By fasting according to the phases of the moon, your body may respond even more powerfully by flushing excess water and toxins from your body.”
In non-werewolf speak, that translates to choosing one of two plans – the basic moon plan or extended version. The basic iteration calls for 24 hours of fasting during the full moon or new moon, when you’re permitted only water and freshly squeezed fruit and vegetable juice.”
Right, and the diet’s enthusiasts say you can lose up to 6 pounds in a day. Then again, most medical experts warn you’ll lose far less, and those pounds will be water weight that you’ll gain back.
Have I tried the diet? Nope, I have not. So who am I to go around criticizing it, right? Obviously, based on this, I could not recommend that diet (though I do know a few things about weight loss!).
Exercise regularly. Stay active. Run through the woods or play a game of tennis.
Enjoy nature. Outdoor settings help to make workouts more fun. Plus, scientists have found that the color green stimulates our minds and gives us more energy.
Work out at night. Studies also show that exercising is beneficial at any time of day. If you work the late shift, find a 24 hour gym. As a bonus, there will probably be shorter lines for the equipment.
Style your hair. Heavy fur tends to be the first thing you notice about werewolves. You don’t have to go that far, but use your hair or other best assets to enhance your appearance. Instead of waiting until you lose extra pounds, visit the salon now or update your wardrobe.
Love your body. Werewolves are always rushing to strip off their clothes in public. That would get you arrested, but you can still appreciate your body and whatever shape you’re in. View losing weight as a gift to yourself rather than a punishment.
Land on your feet. Werewolves can also fall from high places without breaking stride. Develop the resilience to persevere after you make a mistake.
Howl sometimes. Sing out loud. Let musicians and stage actors know you enjoyed a great performance.
Become a hero: While werewolves were once feared, their image is changing, thanks to modern comics. Act like a hero. Perform good deeds and rescue other creatures from suffering. A virtuous life will reduce stress and emotional overeating.
Werewolf Habits That Can Inspire You to Do the Opposite
Go to bed early. Werewolves usually get into trouble when they stay out too late. Even if you never get bitten, an early and consistent bedtime will help you to stay well rested.
Manage your appetite. If you’re devouring your food, cut back on calories by eating slower. Foods high in fiber will help too.
Avoid overtraining. Feeling worn out after a nocturnal romp is one of the hardest things about being a werewolf. Fatigue and injuries could be signs that you’re pushing yourself too hard. Switch to gentler workouts to give your body more time to recover.
Consult your doctor. Werewolves are notoriously careless about making medical appointments to get those bites checked out. You can be smarter by talking with your doctor promptly about any symptoms that concern you.Enjoy moonlight and werewolf films, but stick to a sensible diet. Lifestyle changes, like eating more vegetables and exercising daily, provide a better way to manage your weight.
For the month of September, I am eating Paleo (as much as I can stand) and running a minimum of 1 mile a day (I mean who doesn’t have time to run/jog a 9-14 minute mile once a day).
So far I have seen a 7 lb weight drop in 18 days which is remarkable for me.
What is the Paleo Diet Plan?
The Paleo diet is actually pretty straightforward in that you only eat the best quality of foods and mostly cutting out starches and sugars completely. You might have heard this referred to as the Caveman Diet.
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This diet was to be my next challenge! Off I went to Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s to stock up on chicken, fish, fresh fruits and veggies, along with distilled bottled water. (I do not eat red meat or pork, haven’t in a long time. Also, why I only drink distilled water is another post.)
The Paleo Diet Plan, My Way
I had already decided that I was going to cheat a little with my sauces but I did make healthy decisions choosing these items.
Just because I wanted taste didn’t mean it had to come at the cost of being high calories or loaded with sugar.
I also grabbed some white rice and white potatoes. These are a grey area with Paleo some say it is okay to eat them others disagree.
I know I will want something to fill me up and I am afraid that just eating some vegetables and 5oz of meat each night will leave me starving. Rice and potatoes were on the top of my list.
The Paleo Diet Plan: Results and Lessons So Far
The first few days went okay. I think I ate too much fruit.
Reading suggested Paleo daily menus, 1/2 cup of fruit per day was mentioned. I may not have looked close enough or deeply enough through the billions of recipes but I saw this 1/2 cup fruit thing starting to trend.
So I cut back my fruit intake and quickly found out I was craving sweets. I am guessing that the fruit was giving me my sugar “fix” and after I stopped eating it (I went from 1-2 cups with each meal down to a couple pieces of fruit as a snack).
I caved and had a cinnamon roll about 3 days later visiting the mall. However, I am a firm believer that you are allowed to cheat every once in a while.
So the next day I was right back at my diet and rewarded with a 5lb weight loss the next time I stood on my scale. I was smiling from ear to ear!
The Paleo Diet Plan: Sample menu (my way!)
Breakfast: 2 eggs (anyway I want to eat them) and a handful of almonds
Lunch: Salad with 1 tbs dressing (of my choice) and some fresh veggies (grape tomatoes, carrots,…)
Dinner: Baked salmon on white rice with baked broccoli, peppers, carrots, mushrooms
The Paleo Diet Plan: Tips That Work for Me
I pretty much keep breakfast and lunch the same every day mixing up my greens and veggies at lunch and always choosing French style salad dressing dipping my fork in the dressing and then forking my salad (I am strange like that.
I get the taste of the dressing without the dressing calories.) Dinner is where I change things but I use the same types of protein; 5oz chicken breasts, salmon, halibut, tilapia, and shrimp.
So far going Paleo isn’t so bad. I am not sure what I will do next month. Any suggestions? What has worked for you? Share your thoughts and experiences in the comments section, below!