Your diet plays a very important part in your overall health. What you eat affects both your physical and mental well-being, so why not choose foods that offer benefits? For many, this is a big reason to switch to a paleo diet, as they are striving for better health and believe this plan will help them achieve it. The problem with starting a new diet plan is that people don’t often take the time to learn about it, so then they may not make the best choices and adhere to the plan as recommended.
To ensure you get the best results possible, here are four things to know when starting the paleo diet. Get it right from the start so you aren’t wasting time.
Understand What the Paleo Diet Is
Before you can jump into a new diet, it’s important to understand what the paleo diet is and what it entails. Rather than viewing it as a “diet”, it’s best to think of it as a lifestyle change. This can be a bit less intimidating for people, and it makes it easier to see it as the new normal rather than a chore or inconvenience. The paleo diet is often called the “Caveman Diet” because it resembles a hunter-gatherer style of eating. It doesn’t include any processed food; you will be eating natural whole foods instead. Part of what makes the paleo diet so intriguing is that you can determine just how strict you want to be with it. You can still get results even if you’re loosely following the lifestyle, but if you choose to go hard and be very strict, your results will come quicker and be more obvious.
What Does the Diet Look Like?
So, what foods can you eat when sticking to a paleo diet? Again, think of the cavemen and let that be the guide on whether it is accepted or not.
Some of the foods that you can eat include:
- Nuts and seeds
- Fresh fruit
- Healthy oils
As for what to avoid, as mentioned, anything processed is off-limits as are things such as grains, dairy, sugar, beans, condiments of all types, artificial sweeteners, trans fats and so forth. Where it gets a bit boring is with your beverage options. The only acceptable beverage is water, which isn’t exactly exciting. People often break the rules with coffee and tea. If you’re going to have these beverages, just be sure not to add sugar and cream/milk.
Use a Meal Plan – Eliminate Confusion
Eating paleo meals can be easy if you use a meal plan. A meal plan will eliminate confusion, take the guesswork out of it, and make it easier to know what to shop for. It can help you to diversify your meals and recipes and ensure your diet is well balanced. There are even services available that can plan your meal for you, making it even easier. The goal is to make sure you don’t fall back on old habits and reach for foods that are easy to cook or snack on but don’t adhere to the paleo lifestyle.
Are There Any Negatives to a Paleo Diet?
Improving your diet is meant to improve your overall health, but are there any downfalls to the paleo diet? There are a few that may cause a problem such as confusion over what you can eat and the relatively high cost. Also, if you’re a vegetarian, a paleo diet is difficult because it’s meat-heavy, and you may miss not having dairy or grains.
If you’re ready to embrace a whole new lifestyle and give the paleo diet a try, this information should help you to approach it more clearly.