The Paleo Diet has been making headlines in recent years. With the motto “If cavemen didn’t eat it neither should you”, the Paleo Diet focuses on eating wholesome foods that are found in nature and remain primarily unprocessed. Some problems people experimenting with the Paleo Diet might run into include limited food choice and very strict guidelines. Have no fear, we’ve come up with a guide to the Paleo Diet that will help you succeed in following this eating plan and maintaining a Paleo lifestyle with minimal struggle. If clean eating is something you’re into, we’ll find a way to make it happen. From Paleo recipes to healthy tips for the diet, we’ve got you (and all of your Paleo needs and concerns) covered. Here are just a few tips to help get you started:
1. Prepare to Detox
One of the hardest things about the Paleo Diet is adjusting to its’ clean eating lifestyle. This food plan has virtually no carbohydrates, and you can forget about refined sugars. This diet focuses on vegetables, meats, and fruits. Sure you can add in nuts and some olive oil, but there’s no grains, dairy, or refined sugars on this diet. At all. The first few days, it’s normal to experience withdrawal-like symptoms from lack of carbs and sugar. Your body needs to adjust to this new eating regimen so power through the first few days by drinking plenty of water and keeping your mind off food.
2. Don’t Count Calories
The Paleo Diet has a lot of wiggle room with counting calories. Because there are no processed of refined foods on this diet, the calories you are consuming come from wholesome, all natural foods that your body can easily break down and use for energy. Avocado and nuts are your main source of fats, but they are both good fats so you don’t need to bother worrying about that. Calories from meat and vegetables, as well as fruits and oils, are stored and used the way they are intended by nature. Processed foods that are loaded with trans fat and sugar tend to store calories in your body. The Paleo Diet will help rid your body of many of those toxins and stored fats and replace them with natural energy.
3. Only Eat When You’re Hungry
According to The Beginner’s Guide to The Paleo Diet, cavemen only ate when they were hungry, so you should only eat when you are hungry. Feeding your body when you are hungry allows your body to not store up too much fat. If you program yourself to eat every three hours whether you are hungry or not, your body will automatically store the food you are not converting to energy at that moment. Often times, that excess food is stored as fat. To avoid this, eat when you are feeling hungry, and if you’re not sure if you’re hungy have a glass of water and then re-evaluate. A lot of people tend to confuse hunger and boredom. Don’t eat because you are bored…ever.
4. Know What To Avoid
The Paleo Diet does have a lot of restrictions, that seems to be its’ biggest complaint. If you’re going to give this diet a fair shot, read up on it before trying it. Make a list so you know what foods you can and cannot have. Don’t tempt yourself by keeping Doritos and cake in your apartment. Make sure you have tons of fresh fruits and veggies on hand, along with beef, chicken, and other grass-fed proteins. The Ultimate Paleo Guide provides a full list of foods that are Paleo friendly including lean meats, fish, eggs, fruits, vegetables, some nuts, natural oils, and seafood.
5. Have Some Paleo-Friendly Recipes On Hand
Having snacks on hand as well as small, pre-made meals can really help you succeed with this diet. These kale chips from Nom Nom Paleo are easy to make and stay good for a few days. Grab a few when you want something crunchy or are just a little bit hungry. Make sure you have plenty of recipes for meals, snacks, and treats readily available. Many food blogs devote their entire site to Paleo-friendly recipes. Print a few of your favorite recipes so you never get bored of eating the same steamed broccoli or grilled chicken. Flavor and variety is key when following a strict diet.