I'm not a dieter. Sure, I think about it like every other woman in society who has better things to do, but I never get around to doing it. I don't adhere to any food restrictions. I've eaten grasshoppers and live sea urchins and dog and coagulated blood-filled intestines before. If it's on the food chain and the only thing standing between me and not being hungry— urchin, please—it's getting eaten.
So I welcomed the chance to try and stick with something for a week–the Paleo diet. I could eat a selection of fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, eggs, seeds and nut-based foods but had to steer clear of dairy, processed foods, grains, legumes, sugar and salt. The diet recreates cupboards of humans before the Agricultural Revolution. So that gigantic rib that Fred Flintstone orders at the drive-in that tips over his car? Totally accurate. The Paleo diet is high in fiber and protein with a low-glycemic index and sounded pretty manageable and healthy, but then again, what do I know? I think Doritos Locos tacos are acceptable foods to eat.
I immediately forgot I was supposed to be doing this and put milk in my coffee. Of course I drank it because I'm not made of coffee, guys. Then I had a banana blueberry smoothie. I broke the cardinal rule of not having a protein source in the morning, but I made up for it with lamb and greens at lunch. I was also too busy reading everything I could about the Paleo diet to notice if I was feeling hungry. There are a lot of conflicting opinions about this lifestyle and what "counts." There sure are a lot of angry, intense Paleos. They're just like people!
I did not add milk to anything! This was a breakthrough because it takes me at least five days to remember anything. I only start remembering to bring tampons to the bathroom at work after my period is finished, I always go in, turn on the light, remember what I'm supposed to be doing in there and immediately have to head out again. Maybe one day of Paleo improved my brain fog! Plus, I had a great red pepper and sweet potato soup for lunch.
I read an article on author of The Paleo Solution Robb Wolf's blog titled "Seven Shades of Paleo" and it was both freeing and funny. Wolf details the quirks and dietary needs of seven types of Paleo adherents: militant, autoimmune, low-carb, lacto-Paleo (or Primal), 80/20 Paleo (or Weekday Paleo) and vegetarian. I identified strongly with the Weekday Paleo—on the weekend, it's cool to have a treat or two. Which is good, because I had a cookie today, half because I'm forgetful and half because I have no willpower and don't really believe in diets.
I didn't mention this before but I actually have a top-secret egg and homemade jerky connect who I buy from directly. Those huge, delicious farm eggs helped me through like no one's business. I could eat jerky by the fistful too, but I kept it as more of a snack. Are sweet potato fries and eggs weird to have by themselves for dinner?
These smoothie mornings have been A+. Salads for lunch are normally one of my favourites anyway so it's not been as hard during the day as I thought. I save my one hot meal of the day for the evening, which has been some combo of steamed veggies and protein on the side. I did have a dream about rice. AND I MISS SALT! However, I read on one blog that red wine is Paleo (because grapes) so let the good times roll.
This is true with almost everything but if you focus on what you can do with this diet, it's way better than dreaming about fluffy, scrumptious basmati rice. This is intended for a much longer stretch of time than five days, and I can't say for sure that I wouldn't continue my 80/20 (or 60/40) Paleo stint, but I do feel better/less puffy and it was really not that difficult of a transition. One giant rib, please!