Hey everyone! Hope you are all well 🙂
A friend of mine and I were having a discussion the other day about the Paleo diet. For those of you who haven’t heard of the diet/ are unsure of it, the paleo diet consists of “everyday modern foods that mimic the food groups of our pre-agricultural, hunter- gatherer ancestors.” The diet follows seven fundamental principals:
- Higher protein intake. The diet reccomends a protein intake of 19-35%, which is much higher than the normal 15%.
- Lower carb intake and lower glycemic index. Non- starchy fresh fruits and veggies making up 35-45% of your daily intake
- Higher fiber intake.
- Moderate to higher fat intake dominated by monosaturaed and polysaturaed fats with balanced Omega-3 and Omega-6 fats. The diet recommends you find your fat sources from a healthier and more Stone Age like source.
- Higher potassium and lower sodium intake.
- Net dietary alkaline load that balances dietary acid. This is necessary for kidney health
- Higher intake of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and plant phytochemicals. Whole grains are not a good substitute for grass produced or free ranging meats, fruits, and veggies.
So, what do these paleo enthusiasts (not paleontologists) eat? Well, they stick to eggs, nuts, seeds, fresh fruits and veggies, meats, seafood, and healthy oils. What they stay away from is things like refined sugar, processed foods, dairy, legumes, potatoes, salt, and veggie oils. Here is a sample day (more ideas can be found on the paleo website):
- Breakfast: Omega-3 or free ranging eggs scrambled in olive oil with chopped parsley. Grapefruit, or any fresh fruit in season, herbal tea
- Snack: Sliced lean beef, fresh apricots or seasonal fruit
- Lunch: Caesar salad with chicken (olive oil and lemon dressing), herbal tea
- Snack: Apple slices, raw walnuts
- Dinner: Tomato and avocado slices; grilled skinless turkey breast; steamed broccoli, carrots, and artichoke; bowl of fresh blueberries, raisins, and almonds; one glass white wine or mineral water.
In conclusion, I believe that the paleo diet has good intentions, but is easily overdone. A good diet goal in life (or as I like to call them “food choices” to eliminate the negative connotations that come with the word diet) is to stay away from bad fats and processed foods. The cleaner you eat, the better you feel. Having said that, people need to appreciate that we have evolved since our prehistoric relatives and therefore adapting a similar diet may not be as beneficial as earlier perceived. I have watched people adopt this diet and decide that eating two dozen hard boiled eggs a week was a good idea. Um.. no. The paleo diet in moderation is a much better choice. High protein and low carb diets are not good for anyone. Also, please don’t eat raw foods. I have talked to some people who try to eat meat as raw as possible. I’m not really sure why, but with the way our foods are genetically modified and injected, its seriously not a safe idea. The same thing goes for those who drink “raw” milk. It needs a certain amount of sterilization. Unpasturized milk studies have shown several strands of E. coli along with some other really icky stuff you don’t want in your body.
Paleo concepts= good. Obsession= bad.
In workout news, I signed up for another fitness class that I can check off my “to do list”- pole dancing fitness. Yup, that’s right! I went pole dancing.
Before going I had so many questions! What do I expect? Will I look like a fool? What do I wear?! (In case you were wondering, I went with yoga capris and a flowing tank). You guys… It was amazing! It was the instructor, one other girl and myself for an hour and a half. I guess I was pretty good for a newbie since we got through the whole routine in an hour. It was super hard too! My arms are already feeling! It really is a beautiful art form when you look past the stigma that comes with it. I felt a little foolish at first- I have two left feet in the dancing world, but once I got my bearings I really opened up to the experience. So, what was the class like? The moves had somewhat of a yoga basis with a lose body feel as opposed to a rigid “gymnastic stance”. I learned some very basic spins, floor dances, and hand positioning. I really used my triceps for some floor dancing and grip techniques. If I can find one in Vermont, I would totally love to keep it up. The class is an ego boost for sure. I highly encourage anyone who is mildly curious to give it a try. Just go early and let them know you’re new!
Hope everyone has a nice weekend! If any of you have any other interesting fitness classes let me know! I really like broadening my knowledge of fitness and making it a fun activity!