The first time I heard of the Paleo Diet was a few years ago when my husband’s doctor recommended it to help control his arthritis. For him, grains are his trigger for his inflammation. Since this diet cuts out grains, potatoes, and sugar it was worth a shot. As for me, it seemed a little too much of a “diet.” I don’t do well with restrictions – that’s how I start over eating.
What I do love about the diet is the focus on real foods and, of course, the love of coconut oil. Whether you’re just starting your research or are ready to take the leap, here’s seven tricks to mastering the diet from The Daily Meal.
1. Fats and oils in stricter forms.
The really smart lesson from this lifestyle diet is the types of fat you can consume. It should be from a whole source, like coconut oil, avocado and even bacon (but it has to be hormone free). When coconut oil is digested, it creates a natural energy source. This diet is popular with people in CrossFit because of the energy it can give you. In this diet, fat is not a four letter word.
2. Keep a hunter-gatherer mentality.
Basically, if you can grow it or raise it, it’s fair game. For the most part, if it’s packaged, it’s off limits. Sticking to real, whole foods is key.
3. Fruits and vegetables galore.
As long as you remember potatoes are not a vegetable, than just about anything is fair game. Make your plate colorful. Play with vegetables – try mashed cauliflower or roasted Brussels sprouts to liven up your dishes. Don’t forget about seasoning – a little cilantro goes a long way (personally).
4. Protein in the form of poultry, seafood and meat.
The meat consumed on the Paleo diet is pretty much fair game – as long as it’s organic, free range and hormone free. This is one of the MUSTS of the diet – aside from no grains. The one downside – it can be expensive.
5. Nuts but NO LEGUMES.
Say good-bye to Three Bean Chilis. Instead, opt for almonds, cashews, walnuts as filling snacks.
6. Forget about dairy.
No dairy – at all. But, you can have alternatives like coconut milk. The cheese, for me, is the hardest part. I love a good brie.
7. The good stuff.
Here’s where the real weight loss part of this comes in. No (added) sugar, no soy (which is why the Kelapo Coconut Oil Spray is a big hit with the Paleo group), no grains. That doesn’t mean you can’t recreate your favorite foods, like pizza, it just means you’ll have to be creative.
Hope these tricks help you on your journey to a better you!