When I first told my family and friends that I was following the Paleo diet, I’m pretty sure they all thought I had some type of eating disorder. I would tell them what I could and couldn’t eat and the couldn’t list was much longer. After long phone conversations and describing several of my regular meals in detail (i.e. spicy pork chops, stir-fry beets and carrot fudge), they eventually came around and realized I wasn’t starving myself. Far from it actually. I eat a decent amount and I don’t have belly aches afterward 🙂
For me, and most people (I hope), the Paleo diet isn’t about eating exactly the way that our Paleolithic ancestors did. I mean, I don’t send Roby out to hunt our food (though being in WV, I think he wants to try) and I’m not out there gathering nuts and berries or whatever else (though I’d also love to try). The Paleo diet is more about eating what’s good for you and healing that gut.
Here are the basic Paleo do’s and don’ts. Though I’d like to mention that I am not “Paleo Perfect” nor do I want to be. I drink alcohol on occasion and I’ll sometimes eat white rice and soaked/sprouted legumes. I know a lot of Paleo followers who also eat grassfed butter/milk. Even if you decide to only make a few changes to your diet, you’ll hopefully still reap some benefits.
Do Not Eat:
- Processed Foods
- Dairy (though if you can tolerate grassfed/raw dairy, that’s your decision)
- Refined Sugar
- Bad for you Oils (vegetable, canola)
Do Eat Real Food:
- Meat and Seafood (grass-fed, pastured, wild-caught)
- Nuts and Seeds
- Good Fats (ghee, coconut oil, avocados and avocado oil)
Some of these “no” foods are known to cause inflammation in the gut. They can increase your sugar levels or negatively affect your metabolism. I’m not a scientist or a doctor (and my husband who is doesn’t follow Paleo… sigh), so if you’re looking for more a detailed explanation, try google.
If you need some ideas for what to put on your grocery shopping list, I’ve put together a Real Food Resources Guide that you can check out.