There are no rules! And that began the post. Brilliant. And so true. She told us that “eating is very personal” and that it should only matter to you what you put into your mouth. She is 110% correct: Eating is personal!
I ate a raw food only “diet” for about 8 months and really liked it. But it was hard at the same time because, like some of you, I was alone in this “diet” choice. Others thought I am was nuts (and probably was… love me some nut butters!) but that was ok. I’ve slowly gone back to eating more of a vegan diet but still hold onto the values of eating for my ultimate health. To each their own.
For me, food is important. Having been overweight in childhood and the early teen years, losing a considerable amount of weight, and being a bit obsessed concerned with what goes into my body, I go through phases with food. Now, this could be good and bad, depending on how you look at it. I tend to think a lot about food: what I will have at my next meal, what I can cook for dinner, what is the healthiest thing I can eat, etc. For some reason, nutrition has become, and continues to be, my passion. I am constantly reading books on the subject and trying to find out the path to ultimate health.
Yesterday I had my body fat tested. I’m pretty fit and lean with lower body fat for a woman, healthy though. But, I’m just not toning the way I should with all the weighted exercise I do. So, time to reevaluate my fuel intake. In beginning CrossFit, I’m looking at things a little differently, in terms of food choices. I know I need more protein, for starters. What source of protein, though? Since CrossFit talks a Paleo Diet lifestyle, I just had to research it (I love researching anything health related).
Although eating a “caveman, hunter-gatherer diet” isn’t at the top of my list, and neither has been consuming animal products, this way of eating does include almost everything I stand for for healthy eating. Take a look at what the Paleo “diet” consists of. How does this resemble the way you eat?
The mainstays of The Paleo Diet are fresh fruits, vegetables, lean meats, and seafood. This includes nuts, seeds, healthy fats such as avocados and coconut, eggs, minimal dried fruits, and all the veggies and fruits I could want. Averie said it best that our hunter-gatherer ancestors did a lot of plant hunting and eating with, probably, very little meat consumption. They could locate the bulk of their foods via wildlife (plants) but finding that deer or bird to hunt and eat was probably much harder and less often. All this makes sense to me.
A Paleo Diet also has some discouraged foods: grains, legumes including peanuts, beans, peas, soybeans, tofu, soy milk and flour, dairy products, salt, yeast including baked goods, pickled foods, vinegar, fermented foods and fermented beverages (all contain yeast), processed sugars, starchy root vegetables including potatoes, yams, and sweet potatoes, and excessive added fats except for permitted oils.
Ok, that’s a long list, but when I pull it apart, I already dis-include dairy, soy, peanuts, processed sugars, white potatoes, and excessive fats from my diet. I’ll never give up my fermented foods, as I see these as highly beneficial.
Looooong story short, I’m going for it. I’m gathering my hard-boiled eggs for work, my fresh fish for dinner, and loads, upon loads, of leafy greens and vegetables. I’m always up for a challenge and finding out new information- Day 4 is almost over, even. So far, I’m upping my protein in the form of hemp seeds, nut butters, eggs, and lean meats. Fat intake is high too with added nuts, seeds, and coconut oil and milk. Pretty much, the only things I’ll be excluding is quinoa, beans, and my raw desserts (gasp!). I’ll live. Besides, I “get” to have nightly almond butter filled dates. Hello, delicious! And, so far, I’m feeling fantastic eating this way. Really! I have a lot of energy, no bloating, but hungry (added a lot of weight resistance)! And I love eating so this isn’t really a problem for me.
Also, as Katie so wonderfully pointed out to me, I can have hummus!! Zucchini based or even (traditional) eggplant baba ganoush is acceptable (Hallelujah!). Even Katie has started to introduce more animal proteins into her diet.
Anyway, that’s enough of this food talk for now. Any thoughts? Please, do tell!