When: Beginning May 1st lasting for 30 days
What: 30 Day Paleo Challenge
Summer is approaching, Winter is over. Spring is in the air. You can literally see Spring covering my car right now. What a better time than now to start eating better? I could sit here and type out a bunch of reasons why you should be eating better. But you either already know that or you think you eat just fine…but you probably aren’t. I would like to invite my F3 Brethren to join me on a 30 day Paleo Challenge. This is You vs. You. I did this for 2 months hard core and drop over 25# a couple of years ago and discovered that I don’t handle gluten very well. So what is Paleo? It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle. It is sometimes referred to as the caveman diet, or where you eat foods available before agriculture was invented. You may think it’s all about eating meats, which a large part of it is meat, but it’s so much more. Meat was available if you got a kill, otherwise it was veggies, fruits and nuts for food.
So here’s how the “challenge” works. You take your smartphone, Apple, Android, or whatev’s and download the app called “Paleo Challenge”. It’s a green circle with a stick figure man carrying a spear that you can download in iTunes or Google Play. Once downloaded open the app and create an “individual challenge” (This way it’s free). I tried to create a challenge where we could compete against each other, but then got sticker shock. Now here is where you have a choice. There are 3 levels. An Intro, Primal, and Pure. Which is obviously some paleo, a good balance of paleo, and then 100% paleo. YHC is picking Primal because he still wants to eat dark chocolate and have a Mojito every now and then. The goal is to get to as close to zero points as possible. This allows you to “cheat” a little, because we all know a little bit of bad won’t kill you. But when you cheat beyond what’s allowed you get points, and points are bad…BUT sometimes it’s inevitable to eat something that’s not “approved” for whatever reason. The idea is to eat better and eat cleaner without all of the processing that is done to foods now. #CleanEating. Then you feel so much better because you don’t pump crap into your body.
You log your points in the app and the app can be referenced for foods to eat and foods to avoid. The basics of the “Primal” plan are to eat:
Meats (preferable organic grass fed) Note if food falls on the floor it is extra organic, but you do not get extra credit. Roadkill is also acceptable, but caution the neighbors DSH probably wasn’t fed organic cat food.
Veggies (Organic where available/feasible)
Fruit (In small amounts)
Nuts & Seeds (Sorry peanuts are not actually nuts)
Natural Fats (Coconut oil for example)
And it allows some minimally processed food and other modern conveniences.
You try to avoid: Grains, Legumes, Sugar (some honey is okay), Processed foods. You have 3 basic categories.
1. Eat all you want foods, calories don’t count in this challenge (0 points)
2. Eat a little bit of these (1 point per serving OVER the limit)
3. Avoid (2 points for each serving)
I put some examples here
0 point foods (Eat all you want)
- Meat – Beef, chicken, fish, pork, eggs
- Veggies – Pretty much any veggie other than white potatoes
- Fats – Olives, avocados, coconut, Grass-fed butter
- Dairy – Full fat grass-fed Milk, Butter, Kefir, cheese, cream, yogurt
- Canned – Salsa (unsweetened, yes most have sugar)
- Beverages – Water, Tea (unsweet), Unsweet almond/coconut milk, raw milk
1 point foods (Anything MORE than what’s below gives you a point)
- Meat – Anything more than a palm size of bacon, deli meet, jerky, sausage, grass-fed hotdogs
Fruits – Up to 3 pieces or 3 handfuls of Apples, bananas (try to eat them when green), and the list goes on…
- Starchy Veggies – Keep it under a handful of potatoes, white rice
- Nuts/Seeds – Keep it under a handful of nuts and seeds (peanuts are not nuts)
- Treats – LaraBar (1xday), 80% Dark Chocolate (1/2 oz/day), Paleo friendly treats (up to 2x week)
- Protein Powder – 1 serving per day of either Whey or egg white protein (no soy)
- Coffee – 2 cups per day before noon. And if you’ve never had #Bulletproof coffee you gotta try it. Take hot coffee and blend it with a teaspoon of coconut oil and grass-fed butter
- Beverages – Up to 4 servings per week of hard liquor or wine (not beer)
When you go out to eat watch for hidden gluten and sugars, i.e. Chinese food and Hibachi carrots
2 point foods (Go ahead and lock these out of your pantry…)
- Sugars – Agave, Aspartame, Barley Malt, Rice Syrup, Candy, Cane Juice, cane sugar, caramel, carob syrup, coconut nectar, coconut sugar, corn syrup, dextrose, fructose, gum, syrup, jelly, jam, lactose, malitol, maltodextrin, maltrose, mannitol, imitation maple syrup, molasses, Sugar in the raw, saccharine, sorbitol, sucralose, stevia, xylitol.
- Processed foods and oils – Basically every oil other than coconut oil and olive oil. Any healthy sounding pre-packaged food bar unless it’s a larabar type knock off. Salad dressing, ketchup and mayo (note you can still use mustard and you can make paleo mayo. And for salad dressing, just use olive oil and lemon juice with maybe a little honey)
- Grains – Any type of grain
Bread – Stay away from all breads. But note there are paleo approved breads and cookies, you probably have to make it yourself though
- Legumes – Basically stay away from all beans other than green beans. Also stay away from peanuts
- Dairy – Stay away from anything that’s not grass-fed. I know Harris Teeter and I’m sure Whole Foods and clean living stores will have something that works. Walmart even carries grass-fed butter (Kerrygold)
- Beverages – Stay clear of Beer, Juice, Soda, Fake flavored water, sweet, tea, lemonade, Gatorade, soy and rice milk.