Paleo 101: The Basics

Recently I created a little sheet to give people when they ask about Paleo. I think with all the information out there, it can be very overwhelming at first. Realizing I never put this basic information here on my blog, I am adding it now.

PALEO INFORMATION

The Basics:

-Paleo is not a diet. It is a lifestyle. The goal is to reduce inflammation in the body and achieve a healthy hormonal balance. Losing weight is a side effect of eating this way, not the goal.

-Foods to eat-
Meats, seafood, vegetables, fruits, nuts, healthy fats and oils. Fermented foods.

Meats/seafood-grass fed beef, pastured poultry/pork/lamb, etc. Wild caught seafood.

Vegetables-pay attention to the dirty dozen (12 most contaminated fruits/vegs)-choose organic if poss. Use sweet potato/squash/zucchini in place of pasta or white potato.

Fruits-Same as vegetables. Limit starchy/high sugar like bananas, mangoes, etc to once a day if you are active.

Nuts-Garnish/snack. Not main course. Try not to overdo them. A handful a day is fine. Preferable nuts (with l owed omega-6 content-ie. less inflammatory) are macadamias, cashews, hazelnuts. Almonds ok in moderation.

Oils-Use coconut oil, clarified butter (preferably grass fed), olive oil. Avocados, coconut, olives are great fat sources.

Fermented foods-kombucha (a fermented tea), sauerkraut, kimchee, coconut or almond based kefir or yogurt.

-Foods to avoid– ALL grains (this includes corn, wheat, oats, rye, barley, rice, etc..NO GLUTEN), refined seed oils (canola, soy, sunflower,vegetable, grape seed), white potato, legumes (including peanuts and soy), artificial color/flavor, dairy (some paleos eat raw or grass fed organic dairy-this depends on how your body handles it). Refined sugars (maple syrup, local raw honey, date sugar ok).
Alcohol (at the very least you should avoid beer and the sugary mixed drinks).

Resources:

-Basics Books:
Practical Paleo by Dianne SanFilippo. This book is a great resource for starting out. She breaks it down in a very easy to understand way.
Theres 30 day plans, lists, and helpful charts and cut outs you can use as reminders so you don’t have to lug the book to the store. Its also colorful and full of great photos.

It Starts With Food by Dallas and Melissa Hartwig. Creators of a 30 day squeaky clean paleo plan called “Whole 30”. This book is a little more technical but a great read once you have a handle on the basics, or you are interested in doing a 30 day super clean Paleo diet.

The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson. He has his own paleo-like program called “Primal”. Allows for a little more than Paleo does. Great way to start. His website is full of info thats easy to understand and supported by research.

-Cookbooks: These are books that provide easy to follow recipes, some background info/tips, and beautiful food photography.
Against All Grain by Danielle Walker.
Make It Paleo by Haley Mason and Bill Staley.
Everyday Paleo by Sarah Fragoso.
Well Fed by Melissa Jouliwan.
Eat Like a Dinosaur by Stacy Toth and Matthew McCarry.

-Websites: There are TONS of Paleo bloggers out there. Most of the very popular ones have written cookbooks to go along with their blog.

http://www.balancedbites.com
http://www.whole9life.com
http://www.primal-palate.com
http://www.everydaypaleo.com
http://www.theclothesmakethegirl.com
http://www.paleoparents.com
http://www.againstallgrain.com

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