So I've written about my PCOS before. I've come across a couple groups on Facebook and I seemed to notice a constant between the two: Shakeology and Paleo. Well, I'm not interested in Shakeology. It's a protein powder sold by the BeachBody brand. Paleo, on the otherhand was something I wanted to delve into a little further. I've seen Paleo around for a couple years now, it's really strong in the CrossFit world. I didn't really know a lot about it, so I thought I'd look into it a little bit more before making my decision. Another thing I've been seeing a lot lately is eating more and lifting heavier. Eat more and lose weight...say what?! After years of pounding it into your head that you've gotta eat less to lose weight, this is something that seemed so foreign and something I'd really have to wrap my head around.
So what exactly is Paleo? It's the principles of a pre-historic diet and Robb Wolf explains it here.
The decision didn't come lightly. But, after talking to a couple people, reading some articles and self-reflection...I came to a decision. I was going to do this. There were some MAJOR changes that needed to be made. I recruited D. I said, let's do this for 21 days. It takes 21 days to form a habit, so this was my minimum for this. And if I was doing this, it was going to be done with 110%. As much as it was going to be hard for me, I knew it was going to be even more so for D. So there was going to be no half-ass'ing it. We were going cold turkey. We were about to eliminate grains, refined sugar, and processed foods.
Through recommendations and my own research I came across some really awesome pages and sites:
Now, I did decide to keep in some dairy, but in full fat form and that was cheese and greek yogurt. Say what?! Full fat cheese? Full fat yogurt? YES! Adding in the dairy is what as known as Primal.
I think the hardest part of all of this was actually re-programming your brain and the standard way of thinking of food....like what is considered breakfast foods...what is considered lunch foods...snacks....etc. The other hard part is time. It takes a lot of time to prep and plan. Planning ahead is definitely key. It's also pretty costly to get the pantry stocked at the start. But the way I look at it, the pros of all this FAR outweigh the cons.
So what exactly have we been eating? Meat! Chicken, Beef, Fish, Pork. I knew exactly how I was going to get D on board and all I had to say was BACON.
- Full fat cheese
- Full fat greek/balkan style yogurt
- Almond Milk
- Coconut Milk
- All kinds of vegetables
- LOTS of cauliflower (used in recipes like cauliflower rice, pizza crust, tortillas...)
- LOTS of avocados
- All kinds of fruit
- Nuts: almonds, walnuts, cashews, "mixed nuts" minus peanuts
- Coconut Oil
- Olive Oil
- A LOT of water
- Agave Nectar and honey for sweeteners
- Homemade Larabars (Chocolate Coconut - SO good!!)
I was actually surprised how the first week was actually pretty easy! But it seemed that within the first couple days my usual cravings had subsided. I mean, I was eating A LOT! But it was REAL food that I was eating! ( We also joked that it took so long to prepare our food that we didn't have any extra time to think about wanting to eat junk...actually, no joke, lol!) I was already starting to see and feel results. You actually don't realize how much you can be bloated and I noticed that go down. The increase in my energy levels was fairly significant. The number on the scale was dropping, I've now lost 10lbs. But that's not what I wanted to make this all about, though it was pretty cool to finally break past a number that I haven't been able to get below for like 8 months! I'm losing inches, I've noticed a difference in my skin and I just feel really good about what I'm putting into my body.
So week one was awesome! Then came week 2. Settling in. Food choices starting to get boring. Week one, day one was HARD! I really wanted to eat something sweet and not so healthy. Okay...I wanted to eat junk! I'm really proud of myself though because I didn't cave. The mind is a powerful thing. And for too long I'd always give in to myself. That one side of my brain became a bully. But, the other half is starting to stick up for itself and that too, feels pretty darn good! I ate five fresh dates. Man are those things good! I never realized! I also realized later that evening, that I hadn't drunk enough water during the day, so my body was masking the dehydration with making me think I was hungry. Hydration is SO important!
I know D is getting ansy for the 21 days to be up, but honestly he has done SO well. I'm very proud of him. I know he really wants a Diet Coke....
Me on the otherhand, I'm going to keep up with this. I'm finding ways to incorporate it all into our lives. Finding different ways to make things. Using different ingredients. I made bread on the weekend with almond flour and flaxmeal. It was only an inch high, but hey! It's a start! I've made pancakes. I've made pizza (cauliflower crust...SO good!). I'm not even giving titles to food such as "GOOD" or "BAD". It really is just about re-programming how you think about food.
I'm excited at the possibilities this has for me. Now this isn't for everyone and I'm not saying you too should change the way you eat. But, should you ever decide you'd like to go for a stroll down this path and you have any questions, by all means, ask me! I'm still just a newbie and figuring it all out too, so I am by no means an expert that's for sure! This is something I wanted to share with you and let you know what I've been up to and how wonderful and eye-opening it has been!
This for sure won't be the last you hear on this from me!