Four weeks ago I turned my back on everything I believed in and embraced the paleo lifestyle. I feel fitter, less bloated, my clothes fit better and I’m better in bed. You can be all those things too, but in the name of consumer journalism, here’s some advice to prepare you for your life-changing challenge:
Things you’ll need to buy:
– Dental floss
If you don’t floss regularly right now, you better start making that shit a habit. I’m personally more of a mouthwash guy, but pure ethanol can’t dislodge the remnant meat and sinew from all those carcasses you’ll be devouring.
– Better toothpaste
If you think all that protein makes your poo smell bad, address the other side of the chain too. Plus, if you’re going strict paleo, your main source of calcium is now broccoli (no more enriched bread or milk) – try getting a fair whack of it in the morning and evening. And while we’re on the subject…
– Better air freshener
Protein poos are the worst.
– A composter
Organic waste will make your bin smell to high heaven, get that shit working in your garden instead.
– Minimalist running shoes
Paleo isn’t just a diet, it’s a lifestyle. Trust me, you get caught up in the madness really quickly. But please try and avoid those toe shoes… They’re one step away from Crocs on the shoes-that-will-get-you-laid scale.
Things you’ll have to start doing:
If you live with other people and are the only paleo eater, see how long they’re gonna put up with your crap. The woman you married can only cook two meals for so long.
– Pack your own lunch
Being in control of your own catering is the most important thing when going paleo. You’ll realise very quickly that the world has moved out of the cave in a big way.
– Eat frequently
This is only for the first couple of weeks, while your body is adjusting to the lack of hollow carbs. The thing is, our bodies adapt to our habits and yours will not be happy with you when you suddenly rob it of a healthy stream of empty carbs; it’ll think you’re starving it and then retaliate with severe, debilitating cravings. Snack on good fats like avo, olives and almonds.
– Be more skeptical about traditional nutritional advice
Having meat with every meal, butter instead of margarine and full cream dairy will not give you a heart attack!
Most importantly: Research!
I cannot stress this enough. There’s a reason why registered dieticians are always studying, because new research about food comes out all the time. I have a very good CrossFit coach who has helped me achieve remarkable results in a very short time, but I don’t for a moment consider him to be the last word on nutrition.
The Whole30, for instance, is a great programme to get you set up for a paleo lifestyle. It sets the guidelines and whole9.com has detailed articles about the science behind the exclusions. It’s by no means a sustainable lifestyle. You gotta see what works for you, after starting with it.
I’m gonna miss being on the Whole30, so much that I might do another 30 days in a couple weeks. We’ll see.