Two of my friends dropped a bunch of weight in a hurry, and when I asked their secret, both answered Paleo. My curiosity was instantly peaked. Not only because they looked so darn good (and had the energy to match), but because they didn’t have that dreaded “my diet sucks” face. They were both walking billboards for the caveman way of eating. So I went to Tina B, who documents her own Paleo adventures and recipes on her blog, Paleo Newbie. Read on for the inside scoop on this old school/new school way of eating.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Paleo
Ready to rock the Stone Age diet? If I can do it, I know you can too. I’m a Tukee girl, mother of twin 20-year-old boys, and I love getting outdoors – especially hitting the trails of South Mountain.
Earlier this year, I gave up my pastas and potatoes to live the paleo lifestyle. Why? Well not because I was overweight or had any real health issues. I just wanted to find out if the paleo diet could rev up my energy levels, improve my digestion and help out with my seasonal allergies.
After 10 months, I can honestly say “going paleo” has worked wonders for me. Now I sail through long workdays, almost never have stomach problems, and I’m 90-percent allergy free. I was so blown away with the difference paleo made in my life, that I started my first blog: PaleoNewbie.com. Stop by and you’ll see at least three new paleo recipes posted each week along with helpful paleo info.
So how about you? Ready to rock it with paleo? First you need to learn the rules: what to eat, and most importantly, what not to eat.
The Bad Stuff to Avoid
- All processed foods and drinks
- All foods containing grains, including wheat, oats, corn and rice
- Almost all legumes (no beans, peanuts, etc.)
- Most starches, such as white potatoes
- All refined sugars
- All processed vegetable oils and most seed oils
- Dairy products
- Fruit juices (sorry, too much sugar!)
Healthy Paleo Foods – Enjoy as Much as You Want:
- Meat (preferably grass-fed or free-range), including beef, poultry, pork and lamb
- Fish, wild-caught
- Eggs, yes including the yolks
- Almost all vegetables (including carrots and sweet potatoes)
- Nuts and fruits (go easy on these if you’re trying to lose weight!)
- Healthy oils, including palm, olive, coconut and avocado
Simple, right? There’s still a whole lot more you should know about the Paleo diet if you decide to go for it. I’d suggest you pick up Robb Wolf’s The Paleo Solution – it’s an easy and entertaining read with tons of great info.
Here’s a recipe from my Paleo Newbie website to get you started. Good luck!
Nutty Pumpkin-Spiced Paleo Energy Bars
1/2 cup walnuts
1/2 cup pecans
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup dried unsweetened cranberries
1/4 cup Medjool dates (pitted)
1/2 cup raw honey
1/4 cup coconut butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt
- Grease an 8X8 baking dish with coconut oil
- Take 1 cup of your nuts, plus the dates (not the seeds!) and pulse for just a couple of seconds in your food processor. It should be ground small. (This mixture is the bars’ binder)
- Next, in a large bowl, combine the pulsed ingredients, plus the rest of your nuts and seeds, shredded coconut and cranberries
- Now in a small saucepan mix the honey, coconut butter, vanilla, spices and salt.
- Stir over medium-low heat until it gets a little bubbly
- Pour the saucepan mixture over the ingredients in your large bowl
- Mix together, using your hands if necessary to combine
- Press the contents of the bowl into your greased pan
- Push the mixture down fairly hard into the dish and make sure its distributed evenly
- Cover and place in the freezer for about 20-30 min
- Remove, slice and gobble
- Makes about 12, 4-inch long bars
*Note: Wrap and keep these in the fridge for a quick grab and go snack. They are best enjoyed chilled.