Thank you for this amazing opportunity that has brought us together. I pray that the truth I am about to share about my journey helps inspire and motivate my squirrelly followers!
I wanted to talk to you all a little about the paleo life style change that I made, and then fell off the band wagon, but now I have started again. I have had so many people tell me that they don’t know how I do it and that they could never completely change their lifestyle and stick to it. Well here it is y’all…. It is hard and you have to be in the right frame of mind. YOU have to be ready to make the change in your life to be healthier. You can’t look at someone else who is doing it and think “oh, I could do that”, unless you really want it. I did really want it, and that is what made it easy for me! I was tired of having stomach issues, being tired and just not feeling well at all. I have read several articles not to mention being told my whole life, that what you eat affects your mood and overall health.
I do not like to take prescription medicine or medicine in general really. When my doctor wanted to put me on depression and anxiety medicine, I knew it was time to try something else. I began using essential oils to help support my mood, Cheer and Wild Orange are two of my favorites! I still knew something else had to change, that would be my diet. I did research on keto and paleo diets, vegetarian and even vegan. After a few weeks of reach I decided on the paleo. Vegetarian and vegan were a little too far for me, since I really do like meat. I knew I would fail at this. No need in setting myself up for failure. To help me decide I needed a side beside comparison. I found really good information comparing the two. One thing that I really liked about the paleo diet is that I was not limited on what types of fruit I ate and that it removed dairy from the diet. With a house hold of lactose intolerant people, it seemed like an easy thing to give up.
So, what is the paleo lifestyle? It is a diet that focuses around healthy eating of natural foods, no processed foods, no processed sugars, no dairy or soy, no legumes, no grains. You can have fruits, vegetables, like carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, squashes, and meats. You can find a complete list on the Ultimate Paleo Website. This has been a great resource me in this change! With this lifestyle, it focuses on getting your body used to eating natural foods rather than the over processed food that are jam packed with preservatives, hormones, and other filler products that our bodies were not designed to ingest, much less digest. There are tons of resources out there. A great starting point is a book called Paleo for Beginners: The Guide to Getting Started. It helps to simplify the change and prepare you for what is to come.
Is this a hard change? YES, absolutely. Is it worth it? YES, absolutely. Let me tell you some of the things I have noticed. Before I began the paleo diet I had mood swings, like most women do. I had acne that I couldn’t seem to get under control. I had stomach issues (not going into detail here), and I was always exhausted. When I started the paleo lifestyle, there were a few days at the beginning where these seemed worse. My body was adjusting to the change. Then I had a boost of energy, my mood was more stable, my acne improved tremendously and my stomach issues were almost none existent! I lost 9 lbs. in the 2 months I did the paleo lifestyle. At that point I told myself, oh I am healthy (I had also had a healthy screening at work and was within all normal ranges); I don’t need to do this. I had forgotten about all the benefits that had come with it. My acnes came back, my exhaustion returned, my stomach issue were back in full force, and depression was settling in as well. I did not like this. So I am back at it and for the long haul.
This life style is not for everyone and it may not be something you can get the whole household on board with. My husband will eat what I fix but then adds cheese to it or grabs a roll. It can be done though. You would be surprised to see how good food can be without all the additives and artificial flavors. You may even be surprised at how good of a cook you are, and how easy it is to fix the food. My one advice for beginners is to meal prep. It is so easy to go to a restaurant and not see something that fits in and fall of the band wagon. Meal prep and skip the restaurant. Bring your lunch to work and make sure you set aside 10-15 minutes to make yourself a good breakfast! It is worth all the hard work!