I fell off the Paleo wagon and I’ve slowly been climbing back on. I started following the Paleo diet around January ’13. I learned about it at the end of 2012 and mentally prepared myself for the challenge of changing my diet in 2013. I’m not going to lie, it was hard. I had to:
- Stop eating at restaurants (initially)
- Clean out my kitchen
- Go to Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods to stock my kitchen with more natural, sometimes organic, gluten-free and paleo friendly products
- Stop going to happy hour where wine and cosmos led to me ordering food that wasn’t good for me.
In total, I lost 33 lbs. and maintained this weight loss until my summer vacations. In August ’13, I took a wonderful trip to Cape Cod with three friends and was drawn to the scent and aroma of fried shrimp.
In September ’13, I visited an all inclusive-resort in Punta Cana where I did pretty good maintaining my diet but I’m not going to lie, I drank and drank and drank! After the summer, I packed on about 5 lbs but I was still at a place where I felt comfortable with me. And then the holiday season hit and it all went downhill. I fell victim to my sugar and carb addiction! I ate my family’s traditional holiday foods that included macaroni and cheese, potato salad and lasagna. After the holidays ended, I had the great idea that I could have a cheat meal on Friday’s so I would stop at Chickie & Pete’s for their “gluten-free crab fries” with the creamy, delicious cheese sauce. I noticed that I started to get bloated again and figured, “this will pass.” I also popped into Bone Fish Grill for Wednesday’s sale, bang-bang shrimp. I know that bang-bang shrimp isn’t gluten-free and I know that gluten-free causes bloating with in me but I ate it anyway. But I thought again, this will pass. Well after a month of thinking, this will pass, I gained weight, I suffered from bloating again and I even caught a cold when I haven’t been sick since I switch to the Paleo Diet. Unfortunately, as you can hear it all the time, it happens to the best of us to fail sometimes. I fell off the Paleo wagon, but now I’m back on. At the end of the Holidays Season, I knew I have to go back to the Paleo wagon. After a whole week out of the Paleo track my food excesses already started to play havoc with my body. My skin started to look bad and the acne was back. I was getting sugar headaches, I was starting to gain some weight, and I couldn’t sleep as well either shortness of breath. I also started to have abdominal pain and discomfort, gas, and diarrhea. That was the moment when I decided to do whatever it takes and return to my Paleo diet.
The first step to get back on the way back on the Paleo wagon is to focus. It is counter-productive to feel guilty or feel bad about something that already happened. Now the focus should be on a plan to get back on track, on the solution instead of the problem. If you need to do this too, review your reasons for what you started to follow a Paleo diet in the first place. Next, review the benefits and your personal goals. I took some decisions and I was willing to keep them. I remade my rules and I included getting back into regular exercise, having green tea instead of coffee in the mornings, and not eating after 7pm. Returning to the Paleo diet was a wise decision and in just a few days all my symptoms disappeared and I was feeling great again. In order to go back on the Paleo diet I had to eliminate grains, diary, sugar, processed foods, and alcohol from my menu and replace them with a diet based on grass feed meat, fowl, fish, eggs, vegetables, tubers such as sweet potatoes, fruits, and nuts. I think that the Paleo diet is the world’s healthiest diet because is the one our ancestors have used and we are genetically adapted to that. In short time, after I went back to the Paleo diet my acne disappeared again, I started to sleep better, and I generally was in a better mood. I also know that the effects on long-term of the Paleo diet are even more impressive. It can help you reduce the risks of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic degenerative diseases. If you are overweight it can help you manage an optimal weight. It can also help you improve your athletic performance, slow or reverse autoimmune diseases, increase libido, enjoy a healthier and longer life, and many more. Have you ever fallen off the Paleo wagon and hopped back on? If so, tell me about your experience in the comments below!