Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Paleo eating for all the scaredy cats...

I know I rabbit on and on here about Paleo food, its benefits and I've had many a question about why and how I maintain this lifestyle since loosing 70 kgs. I want to explain how simple it really is.

I guess for me it started through pure laziness and lack of resources... Which sounds extremely negative but let me elaborate.

I was a battling single Mum for years, struggling to make ends meet in regard to both food and time. I lived in a fairly remote community, with minimal resources or access to the usual Weight loss program's. I worked enormous hours, I had no time to weigh food, count calories, and no money to buy prepackaged weight loss foods. 

I dieted hard but i always struggled to maintain momentum. I would walk and eat well, loose 6 kilos and within weeks return to my old habits.

In the end I just gave up. It was all too bloody hard. Weigh this, eat then, eat more, eat less, walk more, lift weights, eat carbs, minimise fruit, check the labels.... ARRGGHHHHH... 

So, I began to eat real food, just meat, vegetables, nuts, berries and a little fruit. I ate when I felt like it, and whatever I felt like. I gave up bread, pasta, refined flours and sugars. I guess back then I was eating intuitively, although I didn't know it at the time. 

I also gave up regular alcohol. I went to bed earlier and minimised the stresses in my life. I let go of emotional baggage that I had collected. 

Weight started to fall off, even without a huge change in exercise. I felt better, I was sleeping better. People started to comment on my skin, my hair, my sparkly eyes. I had more energy, I wanted to exercise, I ran when I used to drag my feet. I felt fantastic and I still do. I still exercise every day in one form or another, we go camping and bush walking on weekends, we are much more energetic and have way more fun than ever before. 

A lot of people knock the Paleo way of life, citing that we must eat grains and whole wheats etc for optimal nutrition. Me? I can't eat any of that without hearing my Dads voice telling me that cereals are used to fatten cows. 

I'm really not sure if I completely fit in the mould of Paleo, because I still eat some dairy. I eat butter, not margarine, and I eat good quality Greek yoghurt, not diet stuffed full of poison yoghurt. 

My theory, and I've said in the past, I'm not a Dr nor have any medical degrees, is that the packaged foods we eat are so jam packed full of preservatives that we are getting fatter and succumbing to more illnesses than ever before.

This was tested when I spent some time in France last year. I ate everything, croissants, chocolate, bread! French people use fresh food. There are few supermarkets and every block has a baker, a butcher, and a fruit stall. People buy their food daily. Not a kilo was collected and my hot flushes were non existent. Back to Australia and back into the preservative laden food, bam, fluid gain, aching joints and hot flushes to the max. 

Recently, I read a Peter McCallum Hospital study that notes cancer cells need glucose to live, hmmmm don't have to be an oncologist to work out that its time to minimise sugar intakes. Quickly. 

Paleo is not a really diet, it's not always even a weight loss tool, but it has increased my health 1000 fold. Just eat real food. if it comes from a farm, eat it, if it comes from a factory, avoid it. 

imagine your local supermarket, you only need to skirt the edges, grab fruit, veges, eggs, meat, fish, chicken, and butter. i cook in coconut oil, instead of the canola oil i used to use. Theres no need to venture into the aisles. The only thing I buy in a tin is salmon or tuna. 

Some people will say its expensive to eat like this, but we have no medical nor pharmacy bills. We don't get colds. Overall I think it's an investment in long term living. Hugo and I have 10 kids and 4 grandchildren, and I want to be around to spoil them all as much as I can. I want to travel the world and be well enough when I'm 90 to go to Uni. 

There is so much information on the net about specifics, I'm not going to bore you all with it here, because its so simple. Eat real food. Eat Well, Feel Well.

Google Nerd Fitness ( my favourite site), PaleOMG, check out Paleo recipes online,  Buy Peter Evans new cookbook, if you need help or inspiration.  It takes a little tweaking to personalise but you can easily live a full life round this way of eating. If I have chicken fillets out for dinner, I will often google paleo dinner with chicken, if looking for a change. Experiment with different spices or herbs, grow your own food. Reconnect with the idea that food is nutrition, eat slowly, at the dining room table, and make it a ritual rather than a rush. 

There will still be those amongst us who won't give up alcohol, or chocolate, or cereal and that's fine, it's your life and your choices. Please remember, though that every decision has a consequence.

I'm now in the process of launching my Wellness Coaching business, amongst other things, so please contact me if you would like a session in getting your life, your health, your energy and vitality back where it should be. You won't regret it. 

Let me show you why diets don't work but wellness coaching does... 

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