What is Paleo?
There are lots of opinions, theories, and stereotypes about what Paleo is. But really, Paleo is a lifestyle for holistically healthy living. The Paleo diet recommends whole, nutrient-dense foods, and is type of elimination diet.
By removing many of the causes of allergies, inflammation, leaky gut and autoimmune disorders, the human body is able to detox from foreign substances and naturally reset those basic functions that make eating, breathing and moving so effortless in a healthy system.
Put simply, Paleo is a return to the basics—it is the human diet that works with our genetics, not against it.
Paleo looks to our ancestors for guidance on what to eat and how to live. Now I am not saying we should eat like a cavewoman, live out of caves, and start wearing loin cloths...but the foods that our great, great grandparents wouldn’t have recognized in our modern supermarkets shouldn’t be food for us now, and
Paleo offers guidance in avoiding those products that do more harm than good.
In today's modern day, our body is attacked on all sides by environmental pollutants that are toxic to us. If we avoid these contaminants, in addition to the many additives found in foods, we are allowing our body to reach peak performance and optimal wellness on its own, often without the help of medicine or invasive surgery.
What to eat on the Paleo diet?
Paleo nutrition is elimination of grains, gluten, legumes, low-fat pasteurized and homogenized dairy, corn, soy and sugar. Instead we get to consume lean cuts of grass-fed meat from cattle, bison, goats, lamb or wild game. Eat pastured chicken, eggs and pork, and wild-caught fish and seafood.
By consuming local, organic, in season fruits and vegetable you are helping to support your local economy and agricultural system, or grow your own to be even more sustainable. Work on avoiding rancid seed oils like canola, corn, soy, sunflower or safflower oils, and instead use pastured animal fats like lard, tallow or schmaltz, coconut oil, grass-fed ghee or cold-pressed olive oil for your cooking, baking and dipping needs. Nuts and seeds are also included in a Paleo diet.
The Paleo diet is more about lifestyle. It is not a 30 day Challenge, but more of something you do lifelong. So some people find that chocolate, some dairy, some alcohol or other such items are part of their personal Paleo template—and this is fine. Don’t think of Paleo as being restrictive, but more as a template for the most nutritious and optimal way of eating. Everyone is different, and everyone reacts differently to foods. You can add and subtract foods based on you and how you are responding. Bring awareness to how you feel; You may discover food intolerances, reactions, or new favorite ingredients.
Along with the diet component, Paleo Lifestyle better allows you to seek and achieve optimal health and peak performance. Follow a Paleo Lifestyle and work on stress reduction, community engagement and support, fitness and play, exposure to nature and honoring the body’s circadian rhythms!
I believe there are four equally important components that make up the Paleo lifestyle – Diet or Nutrition, Movement, Rest and Recovery, and Stress Reduction. If it sounds simple, it’s because it is. When we start to make changes to our lifestyle it may seem complicated at first. All you have to do is take one step at a time, and you will quickly embrace the changes you will see in your health
Paleo is about doing what you need to support your journey to better health. This includes moving your body every day in a way you love, eating nourishing foods, and getting restful sleep. All the rest falls into place as we learn to listen to our bodies optimal performance.
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This guide is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of medical advice or treatment from a personal medical provider. All readers of this content should consult their medical provider before beginning any nutrition, supplement, or lifestyle program.