I had an interesting conversation with a class-participant about Paleo eating. There are a few peeps that participate in various classes, that are also part of the local Cross-Fit cult. These participants advocate the Paleo lifestyle. I do not.
The question she posed concerned, when these starting consuming grains again, as one certainly could not live an entire life-time without a piece of bread. She said, 'So what happens, when they eat grains again. Do they blow up like a tick?'
And quite possibly, yes they do....... I recalled a short-period of time I wanted to drop a quick 10# and I followed Atkins style eating for two weeks. Well, I lost the 10#, BUT when I had a weekend dealing with hormones, the weight I lost returned and not in places I wanted it to be. Lesson learned.
Paleo advocates eating only fruits, veggies, lean meats, nuts and seeds-- only things that might have been found with early man. Although, in the Paleo diet for athletes, eating grains is encouraged around the training window. I am all in for eating and building a diet around all of these -- BUT, evidence shows us that we had access to and consumed grains, and tubers and other no-no's on the Paleo diet. Manna fed to the Israelites when wandering the desert is described as a cake with honey. Wow! God is feeding his people grains. But that is my interpretation of what manna is. I haven't eaten any...... Yet.
The reality is grains are not necessarily a BAD thing as they have been painted in the past decade with the Atkins Diet, South Beach Diet, and the current Paleo diet, to name a few. They are currently also painted another shade of ugly with the gluten-free trends. (I do understand the seriousness of Celiac's disease, and various gluten intolerances. But I also know individual's and the industry tends to spread or advocate trends like wildfire, promoting a 'cause'. Please note there is Celiac's in my family and I do have gluten intolerances. I am aware of food cycling, and eat a predominantly plat-based diet. But the industry is currently treating gluten-free living like another money-making trend. And I digress..... Back to grains).
It seems that as we process more and more foods, and strip the value from these and then add a chemical or substance to put back what's we removed, we are destroying the quality of the grain. The issue may not be the grain, but may also be held in the processing. It is big business to produce all these gluten-free foods, which may contain more allergens than the original grain.
And I have reflected on my eating over the last week-- which was comprised of many, many veggies and some fruits (not as many as I would like), lamb, chicken and a piece of fish, eggs, hermit cookies (love), almonds, walnuts, chia seeds, sesame seeds, some whole grain pasta, rice, popcorn, dark chocolate, and coffee with cream.
I am aware of what I am eating, and when I have added a grain and observed how my body responds to it..... Not necessarily to add more grains, but to be aware of any possible allergic reactions.
In a sense, Paleo is a modified Atkin's (or the like) program. I am not saying we cannot learn from our ancestors about life and eating, as I eat more like a warrior than not. I am saying that it is probably a bit more complicated than how the Paleo peeps want to present the whole process.
Losing weight is about creating a caloric deficit -- burning more calories than you take in, as well as the quality of calories. (Some might argue irrelevance, but hear me out). Yes, I could lose weight eating snicker's bars, and gain weight on fruits and veggies if I eat less or more than my body needs for the day. But the quality of the calorie consumed determines my health, and how my body can receive the calories taken in. Paleo is eating a higher quality food, BUT is also eliminating FOOD Categories. We ten to want what we cannot have. I also believe it is about learning again what our body is asking for. The body is intelligent-- we tend to want to tell it isn't. Learn to listen to your body and understand what it is saying. It may want something sweet, or crunchy; it may be thirsty, or it may be tired. What is your body telling you? Amd how do you respond?
As an aside, since I started coaching and working with my weight loss team, I have lost five pounds. I am eating grains, and dairy, and chocolate-- things that are potentially frowned upon by the Paleo community. My diet surrounds veggies, not meat. And I feel wonderful! I am also more aware of when I am finished eating, and what I seek when I eat. The Asians believe in a the 80% rule--- eat until you are 80% satisfied! and you won't over do it, or choose wisely in eating 80% of the time, and it will take care of the 20% that you ate that Snicker's bar. I am finding as I eat more wisely, the processed food doesn't taste good to me.