Below you'll find some of the most frequently asked questions we've been asked since we've gone paleo. As you go through the 30 day challenge, try new recipes and see weight loss results, let us know your questions. If you're curious, others probably are too so lets keep sharing the paleo knowledge!
1.What is Paleo?
- Referred to as the “caveman” diet – the paleo diet is eating the foods that were available to eat by our predecessors, the cavemen of the paleolithic era, more than 2 million years ago. Our bodies are wired to digest the foods that have existed for millions of years such as meats, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds for optimal nutritional value. For a lengthier explanation with references to the experts on paleo, check out the Paleo Diet, Mark Sisson & Robb Wolf.
2.Is dairy Paleo?
- The short answer? No, dairy is not paleo. The reasoning? The root of the paleo lifestyle is to eliminate foods that cause an inflammatory response in your body and are processed in any way. Milk, cheese and yogurt go through extensive processing and packaging and have numerous flavour additives that make it not so easy for your body to process. Simplicity in paleo is key. That being said, kefir and all natural greek style yogurt has benefits to the digestive system and only you know your body best. If keeping a little yogurt or a weekly kefir fix in your lifestyle is for your optimal health then make sure to do that.
3.Why aren’t beans considered Paleo?
- Beans belong to a group of foods called “legumes”. Legumes include all forms of beans (black, pinto, chickpea also known as garbanzo to name a few) as well as soy bean, lentils, peas and peanuts. All of these foods, despite popular belief, are much higher in carbohydrates than proteins (vegetarians take note!) and cause insulin surges in your body. They also cause inflammatory responses during the digestion process and comparatively have little nutritional value to your body.
4.How quickly did you start to see a difference?
- This will vary person to person – most people that try paleo through the 30 day challenge or 21 day paleo sugar detox start to see a difference by day 3. Energy levels improve, quality of sleep is better, less bloating and feelings of heaviness decrease. Within the first week weight loss is felt and pounds start to shed. It’s a good idea to take a photo the day before you begin paleo, another at the end of week 1 and again at the end of the first 30 days. Not only will you feel the difference, you’ll visibly see your body getting healthy, losing areas of fat around the belly, arms and chin and an overall lean body appearance.
5.Grains aren’t paleo, does that include even the healthy grains high in fiber?
- Yes. Keep it simple. Grains aren’t paleo. That includes breads, wraps, barley, wheat, rye, oats, rice, quinoa, corn and buckwheat. Grains cause insulin jumps in the human body and are related to a long list of health problems. The human digestive system does not process grains well and causes inflammatory responses. There is copious amounts of information about the negative effects of grains, and yes even the ones that are labelled “high in fiber”. So even if its gluten-free, whole wheat or high in fiber, put it down and just walk away! Benefit? There are some delicious and easy recipes for paleo wraps, rice, burger buns and dinner rolls!
6.Can I still drink alcohol?
- No. And Yes. Remember the paleo lifestyle is all about putting natural foods free of processing, refined sugars, additives, chemicals and hormones in your body. Many alcohols including vodka, gin (this was a *very* difficult one for us to give up!) and bourbon come from a distillation process of grains, which makes them non-paleo. Wine on the other hand is the fermentation of grapes and is in most paleo lifestyle circles (including us at Paleo Wired!) acceptable. Just make sure to read the labels and check there was no sugar added. Gluten-free, grain-free beers are also OK. Here’s a great breakdown by type of alcohol by Paleo Effect that we really love!
7.What’s with all the bacon? Isn’t bacon bad for you?
- Yes and No. Bacon full of hormones and antibiotics is terrible for you. Bacon that is free of hormones, antibiotics, all natural, no sugar added, no msg, free range, organic and wild is a great source of healthy fats. The paleo diet focuses on including healthy fats in your diet, and bacon, avocados and nuts are all on the list of paleo approved foods! Make sure to READ the label, find a local source in your neighbourhood if possible, and eat up!
8.Isn’t the paleo diet just the latest fad in weight loss?
- No and if you want to just lose a few pounds, you’re in the wrong place. You WILL lose excess fat and weight on the paleo diet, absolutely. But that’s a side benefit of changing the foods that you buy, you cook, you eat and your body ultimately digests. Paleo is about getting healthy & getting back to the foods humans have eaten for millions of years, that are naturally processed and free of unnecessary chemicals, additives, processes, sugars, hormones and GMOs. Keeping your diet clean and simple has far more benefit than losing pounds. And the best part? The recipes are easy and delicious!