I overheard a conversation at the gym the other day; one woman said to another, “I was so bad on vacation; now that I’ve returned, I’m back on my diet again.” What is that?
That statement speaks volumes. Just the idea that one feels they need a break from how they eat indicates that how they’re eating is not seen as a permanent lifestyle change.
While that phrase may’ve been beaten to death by now, it is still true. You have to find a way of incorporating healthy eating and exercise into your life indefinitely if you are looking for lasting changes. It’s that simple!
I strongly believe that if you’re human, or a mammal, for that matter, the PALEO diet will suit. I like the idea of treating it as a process of trying different types of eating and seeing what makes you feel the best, gives you the most energy, keeps your weight in a healthy range and such, in order to feel you’ve given it a good shot and are really convinced that PALEO is the way to go.
Personally, I’ve tried ALL sorts of eating styles. I was fortunate enough to have been raised by hippy parents, so avoiding preservatives, processed junk and sugar is second nature to me. I was vegan for two years (during which period, incidentally, my skin looked the best it ever had). I’ve also experimented with a few of the different diet books out there (that I felt were reasonable) both to have feedback for clients and to see how I felt best. Ultimately, I’ve arrived at the conclusion that I feel the best, have the most energy and have gotten to an ideal, lean race weight following the diet strategy outlined in The Paleo Diet by Loren Cordain. Chris and I have been eating this way for two years and that is the point right there- it’s been two years and we both feel great and don’t feel like we’re missing anything! As a result, we eat this way all the time and don’t feel that we need to ‘cheat’ or ‘be bad’ with regard to our diet.
Of course there are a few generalizations that could apply to all- drink plenty of water, eat lots of veg and fruit, reduce or eliminate processed & white foods (‘junk’!), however, it really comes down to some fine tweaking and trouble-shooting on the the long journey to finding how you can reach your healthy weight and feel great!
Read some of the books out there and come to your own conclusions- perhaps you’ll apply some tips from a few different books to come up with your own, individual approach! Just be reasonable and honest with yourself; keep in mind that you want it to be a permanent change. If you absolutely love chocolate, don’t tell yourself that you’re never going to eat it again. Instead, save the consumption of a small chocolate treat for a special occasion and then it will be just that!