6

votes

What finally made you go 100% Paleo, or why are you holding back?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created May 16, 2012 at 3:10 PM

I have seen a lot of questions asking why people started on the paleo journey, but my question is more about why people may be holding back from 100% paleo, or or what made people give it 100%? I see a lots of posts on here where people say "I'm 80% paleo or I'm whatever% paleo, this is strange to me because if you really believe in this thing why not give it 100%.

I never hear vegans say, Im Vegan, but I eat an occasional steak. If you are vegan you probably wont even walk into a restaurant that serves steak. This was my experience as a vegetarian. I just decided one day to be a vegetarian, I had a few slip ups and within a month meat was gone and I never looked back. With paleo it is not that easy for me. I have been working at this thing for 8 months and the lightbulb still has not clicked on for me to make me give it my all. Logically I know It is what is best for me, I have experienced the benefits first hand, but I still hold on to those few security items every once in a while.

I have been reading Primal Body Primal Mind by Nora Gedgaudas and in the book she states that eating trans fats from vegetable oils just once stay in your system for 2 years. She also mentions that eating gluten once a month if you have celiacs is basically the same as if you eat it all the time, in terms of the effect on the body.

I feel like an Alcoholic that says "I'm 80% sober. Well you either are sober or you are not. I want to give this thing 100% but ned help making the mental switch.

My questions are:

1) What made you finally give it 100%?

2) Why are you still holding back, and what is your vice?

3) Are we loosing all the benefits with the occasional cheat?

91882203467f64f68f25f58f1caeee68

(1017)

on May 22, 2012
at 11:34 AM

I'm 28. I'm down to seafood, grass fed beef, liver, eggs, bananas, apples, celery, cabbage, and not much else. It's improved my skin a ton but I'm ready to kill someone my diet is so limited. Took me about a month to clear completely, and now I'm dealing with scars and minor tiny pimples that are gone in a day which I can deal with. before I was getting cysts that took 3 weeks to heal.

7b0fc3bfeef02de39dcbec8aa38f746b

on May 21, 2012
at 07:57 PM

What foods are you avoiding (and conversely, eating lots of to help combat the acne)? Not sure your age, but I've dealt with acne (mainly cystic too...ugh) for years (I'm 22 now) and haven't had *too* much luck with Paleo...maybe I'm not doing the right things, or for long enough. Would love to hear your feedback!

Cca93695446513d42e376fd80e5bf5a4

(80)

on May 17, 2012
at 10:30 PM

"I never hear vegans say, Im Vegan, but I eat an occasional steak. If you are vegan you probably wont even walk into a restaurant that serves steak". I guess they are 100% meat free because of moral/spirituals reasons in addition. paleo miss them. bread is not as nice as a little cow, I wish it was... I wouldn't cheat and I wouldn't fall into the 80/20 category..

Ebcbbdcb8b727e69e06eaa102d49a84c

(1804)

on May 17, 2012
at 08:30 PM

Love it. I may read this daily just to lift my spirits. Cheers to you, man.

Ebcbbdcb8b727e69e06eaa102d49a84c

(1804)

on May 17, 2012
at 08:28 PM

Same for me. I did venture off paleo a few times after the Whole30 but I knew ahead of time how horrible I would feel, ate it, felt horrible, and vowed to not eat it anymore! The elimination really did it for me.

Fc6a9e07f6056d465573c8969d3a2ddd

(370)

on May 17, 2012
at 06:00 PM

Congratulations, and good luck! The key for me was learning to cook for leftovers. That is, not just to eat leftovers, but to make the most of my time in the kitchen by preparing a couple of extra dishes along with whatever I'm actually having for dinner. That way, on days when I eat all three meals at my desk, I don't have to resort to meal bar pseudo-food or overprice takeout.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 17, 2012
at 04:56 PM

And yes, society has conspired to make it nearly impossible to listen to our bodies even when we're trying. Addictive food additives, the easy way out (pill popping), go go go...

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 17, 2012
at 04:51 PM

SO TRUE, Josh! We've lost so much of our ability to listen to our own bodies. How many people think it's "normal" to have headaches every day, or be in constant pain? Our bodies send us messages all the time, but few of us know how to interpret them. "We all have the innate knowledge from our long evolutionary journey that allows us to know what is best to eat, but society has made it difficult for us to listen to our biological selves."

E7adfe31507efb7c935f618a829f56d6

(1507)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:00 PM

amen brother. preach.

45ace03a0eff1219943d746cfb1c4197

(3661)

on May 17, 2012
at 01:45 PM

Absolutely, we invite people, friends and relatives, to our home. I cook. It works out well for us. I've had awful experiences in the past when people serve food specifically purchased or prepared for me, and I can't eat it or, worse, do eat it and get sick.

7fb4e9fb1162999cdd5099fee49dd0a7

on May 17, 2012
at 12:20 PM

Kudos sir. Hats off to you.

Fb67dc30cead043d1d13ea503a3044dc

(3280)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:17 AM

This. This. This. Yes!! All of what you said, yes!

Cccb899526fb5908f64176e0a74ed2d9

(2801)

on May 17, 2012
at 12:53 AM

Thanks for the recommendation, I'll watch it and report back. Also, I share your pain with regards to the morning coffee, Liane. I've actually found that drinking the coffee sweetener-free with fat added (like coconut milk or dairy cream) is a nice alternative.

2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

(3043)

on May 16, 2012
at 11:52 PM

Watch Sweet Misery, you'll quickly stop the sweeteners.

D613cc4b9409009d5735a23e9fec5886

(143)

on May 16, 2012
at 11:05 PM

P.S. We need a facebook type LIKE button for peoples posts, ha ha. Bravo Grover. I want to copy and paste this awesomeness.

D613cc4b9409009d5735a23e9fec5886

(143)

on May 16, 2012
at 10:58 PM

My husband told me to Google Stevia recently and I did. There's some nasty stuff about it out there too. I'm in the same boat, addicted to Sweet N Low, trying to move to Stevia but it seems even that is not safe. I'm trying to ween myself off but I can't give it up in my morning cup of coffee.

D613cc4b9409009d5735a23e9fec5886

(143)

on May 16, 2012
at 10:56 PM

Wow - powerful statements. I haven't quite gotten to where I can eat liver, but I support you if you do. It is extremely eye opening how many "healthy" foods as the media will tell you are choke full of crap.

C4ed6ba382aed2eefc18e7877999a5de

(1579)

on May 16, 2012
at 09:10 PM

do you find other ways to connect/spend time with people? I find that when I'm doing all my own cooking, I spend less time with others as a result.

Cccb899526fb5908f64176e0a74ed2d9

(2801)

on May 16, 2012
at 08:13 PM

I just took an AP Language exam with all sorts of literary references, and I can comfortably say that this is the finest goddamn piece of prose I've read all day. Sir, I salute you.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 16, 2012
at 07:40 PM

Your first paragraph is GOLDEN. Anger, indeed -- righteous anger, if you ask me. We're literally paying to kill ourselves with the corn, soy, & wheat subsidies. Had a similar moment of FURY in the grocery store the other day while walking past the cereals, but it sounds like your indignation is much deeper.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 16, 2012
at 07:06 PM

GOOD FOR YOU!! Yes, change is hard, but WORTH IT.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on May 16, 2012
at 06:33 PM

I still do dairy, too, although not to the extent I used to. I love sour cream (and recently discovered European-style sour cream...yum!) and cheese. I keep kefir in the fridge and an Indian version of kefir. I buy fresh eggs from an old couple near my home, but I am sure they are fed a mash with soy, but I have not found any pastured chickens nearby. Since I don't raise all of my own food, I have to rely on markets and butchers and cannot be 100%!

63a390e394971bd87e12b706fdb8456e

(309)

on May 16, 2012
at 05:15 PM

Exellent points. I often have to remind myself of the stress outweighing the benefits!

63a390e394971bd87e12b706fdb8456e

(309)

on May 16, 2012
at 05:09 PM

Couldn't agree more with "sometimes I make the choice to nurture some other part of me (e.g. my relationship with others.)" Well said!

Fc64db6a555559762432d503a1dbad19

(1478)

on May 16, 2012
at 04:18 PM

For me the hardest part is the social aspect. I do fine when I cook at home, but when I eat out or socialize I have trouble eating what is good for me. Because I work in the food and beverage industry I have to eat out a few times a week, for social purposes, and because I enjoy the food. Now I am finding I enjoy it less and less and I am very picky about the restaurants I go to.

1955b5516a3eaedce732f4ea8bb3fa6c

on May 16, 2012
at 04:02 PM

I stumbled onto the paleo diet after watching the documentary Fathead, I was a vegan at the time. It was definitely easier to give up meat, and all animal products (not just food-wise) but I really believed in the cause and hated the idea of animals suffering (and still do). It has definitely been harder for me to say goodbye to things like ice cream, hamburgers with buns, my favorite breakfast cereal, etc. Part of it may be that meat is far less (if at all) addictive than processed foods. Sugar, HCFS, and the like are very addictive and harder to give up.

5759bd89db5f73cabe0a6e8f8e6e1cb9

(1467)

on May 16, 2012
at 03:40 PM

Sorry for my typo.

5759bd89db5f73cabe0a6e8f8e6e1cb9

(1467)

on May 16, 2012
at 03:40 PM

+1. My sentiments exacttly. If im invited to dinner and someone has made me some dish that happens to contain chickpeas i'll eat it. Its not going to kill me. The one thing i won't touch under any circumstances is gluten because it makes me ill immediately. Legumes and dairy I wont eat if i have the choice but if theres nothing else on the menu then hell yeah i'll go for the salad that may have some parmesan shavings. I am not going to make my life miserable for an ideologyy.

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20 Answers

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23
20eefe24d8ccf096096f05b5bce1ea40

(988)

on May 16, 2012
at 07:32 PM

Anger. Anger was it for me. Once I found out that most of the ingredients in damn near all the food in the store were poison, put there to increase the profits of billion dollar food companies, who then bribed our government into endorsing and subsidizing their poison, so that they could make even more money off the poisoned, ignorant, obese, sick, trusting public, it was really easy to walk away from sticky-buns and soda. When I walk by the cereal isle in the store I no longer see breakfast food, I see scheming greedy bastards licking their chops, selling 5 cents worth of puffed wheat for 4 dollars a box to a bunch of obese kids and parents who just don't know any better, because no one has told them that the cartoon rabbit on the box is a lying piece of shit trying to take their dollars away from them.
Sugar is addictive, MSG is a neurotoxin, oxidized vegetable oil is poison, I'm a sucker paying top dollar to eat industrial waste.
Not anymore. I snap bones and suck out marrow because I hate the snake oil salesman pushing the post-workout powder. I eat mostly raw liver and laugh my ass off because the sugar barons don't get to harvest my dollars. I put medium rare kidney on a bed of homemade kraut and suck down the juice so the drug companies don't profit on my disease. I boil bones and feet in a pot for 2 days and drink it straight to spite the industry that tries to tell me I need to buy their pills and supportive shoes and lumbar support seats and sunscreen and fat burning drinks. I eat sheep fat by the handful and watch people slamming down Monster drinks, because they have 'energy'.
I am a man. I am not a crop. I will not be harvested. I will eat every part of everything that moves. I will not pay to be poisoned.

Fb67dc30cead043d1d13ea503a3044dc

(3280)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:17 AM

This. This. This. Yes!! All of what you said, yes!

D613cc4b9409009d5735a23e9fec5886

(143)

on May 16, 2012
at 11:05 PM

P.S. We need a facebook type LIKE button for peoples posts, ha ha. Bravo Grover. I want to copy and paste this awesomeness.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 16, 2012
at 07:40 PM

Your first paragraph is GOLDEN. Anger, indeed -- righteous anger, if you ask me. We're literally paying to kill ourselves with the corn, soy, & wheat subsidies. Had a similar moment of FURY in the grocery store the other day while walking past the cereals, but it sounds like your indignation is much deeper.

E7adfe31507efb7c935f618a829f56d6

(1507)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:00 PM

amen brother. preach.

7fb4e9fb1162999cdd5099fee49dd0a7

on May 17, 2012
at 12:20 PM

Kudos sir. Hats off to you.

D613cc4b9409009d5735a23e9fec5886

(143)

on May 16, 2012
at 10:56 PM

Wow - powerful statements. I haven't quite gotten to where I can eat liver, but I support you if you do. It is extremely eye opening how many "healthy" foods as the media will tell you are choke full of crap.

Cccb899526fb5908f64176e0a74ed2d9

(2801)

on May 16, 2012
at 08:13 PM

I just took an AP Language exam with all sorts of literary references, and I can comfortably say that this is the finest goddamn piece of prose I've read all day. Sir, I salute you.

Ebcbbdcb8b727e69e06eaa102d49a84c

(1804)

on May 17, 2012
at 08:30 PM

Love it. I may read this daily just to lift my spirits. Cheers to you, man.

15
35b2cb4d450e5288895c255dfdfff35d

(5828)

on May 16, 2012
at 03:26 PM

For me life isn't all about diet and diet, by far, isn't the only factor that influences health. So, if I'm having dinner with family, I can skip the bread but I'll eat the CAFO steak that's been marinated in less than wholesome ingredients. Having a relationship with family that occasionally includes less than optimal food choices works really well for me. Now, if I were really ill and had to pay close attention to everything I ate that would be another matter.

Also, I don't relate to the word "cheat" or to the concept of "holding back." Health for me is a balance of relationships with people and with food. Usually the balance is skewed in the direction of eating the food I prefer and sometimes I make the choice to nurture some other part of me (e.g. my relationship with others.)

Trying to be 100% and never cheating runs the risk, for me, of being obsessive. I understand that for others, 100% is a desirable goal. But it's certainly not, in my judgment, better to be 100% Paleo than to not be. That's a very personal matter.

5759bd89db5f73cabe0a6e8f8e6e1cb9

(1467)

on May 16, 2012
at 03:40 PM

Sorry for my typo.

63a390e394971bd87e12b706fdb8456e

(309)

on May 16, 2012
at 05:09 PM

Couldn't agree more with "sometimes I make the choice to nurture some other part of me (e.g. my relationship with others.)" Well said!

5759bd89db5f73cabe0a6e8f8e6e1cb9

(1467)

on May 16, 2012
at 03:40 PM

+1. My sentiments exacttly. If im invited to dinner and someone has made me some dish that happens to contain chickpeas i'll eat it. Its not going to kill me. The one thing i won't touch under any circumstances is gluten because it makes me ill immediately. Legumes and dairy I wont eat if i have the choice but if theres nothing else on the menu then hell yeah i'll go for the salad that may have some parmesan shavings. I am not going to make my life miserable for an ideologyy.

Fc64db6a555559762432d503a1dbad19

(1478)

on May 16, 2012
at 04:18 PM

For me the hardest part is the social aspect. I do fine when I cook at home, but when I eat out or socialize I have trouble eating what is good for me. Because I work in the food and beverage industry I have to eat out a few times a week, for social purposes, and because I enjoy the food. Now I am finding I enjoy it less and less and I am very picky about the restaurants I go to.

7
73c6ef35da25ee2c0e3a26ea8a363cc8

on May 16, 2012
at 07:00 PM

Pain. Depression. ADD. ETC. I have a colonoscopy tomorrow, but I know the results will be negative. 7 days in to Paleo with a 1% of cheating its amazing how much better I feel. I have been suffering from IBS,GERD,Depresseion etc. for 7 years, and reached a point where I could no longer take the pain. I had been looking for a one stop medication where I could take a pill and eat all the crap food I wanted. I want to be healthy. I want to feel healthy. I hate waking up feeling angry, tired, sluggish, etc. After doing research for a while I found that I had a choice. Either pop synthetic toxic pills (increasing in number every few months) or change my diet. Although it has not been a total Joy Ride, I can already see that this is my solution. Change is hard, but it looks like there may be some kind of light at the end of this tunnel.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 16, 2012
at 07:06 PM

GOOD FOR YOU!! Yes, change is hard, but WORTH IT.

5
E7adfe31507efb7c935f618a829f56d6

on May 16, 2012
at 05:00 PM

(1) For me, I am always giving it 100%, but that includes not beating myself up if I have to make exceptions. The 100% lives in my intentions. I'm not a football fan, but Vince Lombardi said, ???Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence."

(2) My 'vice' is craving the social interaction that comes with enjoying a meal out with friends (and dried mangos, zomg!).

(3) The stress that comes with adhering to my version of paleo 100% of the time would likely outweigh the benefits of actually adhering to it.

Also, consider the principles of hormesis. A little 'poison' can actually be healthy once in a while.

63a390e394971bd87e12b706fdb8456e

(309)

on May 16, 2012
at 05:15 PM

Exellent points. I often have to remind myself of the stress outweighing the benefits!

3
A115b8aa3c375f10d5bde0c0d06b6143

on May 16, 2012
at 09:18 PM

I was eating 80/20 for a few weeks (with a few binges thrown in) when I had this lightbulb moment of thinking "Why would I ever want to allow myself 20% of crap? It makes me feel like crap 20% of the time... and I want to feel like crap 0% of the time."

I just stopped wanting to eat junk. Thus, 100% paleo.

3
E68bdbd83e45fd5be130e393ace9c9a9

(2063)

on May 16, 2012
at 07:40 PM

1) What made you finally give it 100%?

For me, eating 80/20, I was only getting worse and worse. It took months before I realized I was actually gluten intolerant and that my weekly sandwich or baked good was taking more and more of a toll on my health. After months of 80/20, I was feeling as bad as I'd ever felt in my life. Sleeping 12 or more hours a day, suffering through the most crippling depression I'd ever experienced, low-energy all the time, mood swings, migraines, terrible PMS, bad skin, joint pain. Finally I decided that if I actually wanted to be better, I had to go 100%.

2) Why are you still holding back, and what is your vice?

My only vice these days is coffee. I've given up everything else, including alcohol.

3) Are we losing all the benefits with an occasional cheat?

I don't think so, unless you have an autoimmune condition. I have rosacea and severe gluten intolerance, so for me, cheats are never worth it. For someone healthy, with no autoimmune issues, I'd say "Cheat away!"

3
Dc7c704e93deb37d38d6574a2a5270c9

on May 16, 2012
at 04:39 PM

Why don't I attempt 100% paleo?

  1. I like dairy and it likes me so why would I give it up?

  2. If you want to be 100% you can never trust anything you don't source and prepare yourself which means you can't dine out or eat a meal prepared for you by others. I like eating out, I like the social aspect of sharing a meal. Its kind of hard to maintain relationships when you set yourself above or apart from others over food choices.

  3. It takes time to find and maintain ongoing sources of 100% paleo food. I've got eggs, beef, wild game locked down. Still looking for pork & poultry. As for produce, I do what I can with a small suburban garden and a short growing season. I'd rather buy local and non-organic (smaller carbon footprint), than organic trucked/shipped in from thousands of miles away.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on May 16, 2012
at 06:33 PM

I still do dairy, too, although not to the extent I used to. I love sour cream (and recently discovered European-style sour cream...yum!) and cheese. I keep kefir in the fridge and an Indian version of kefir. I buy fresh eggs from an old couple near my home, but I am sure they are fed a mash with soy, but I have not found any pastured chickens nearby. Since I don't raise all of my own food, I have to rely on markets and butchers and cannot be 100%!

2
Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 16, 2012
at 07:02 PM

I'd like to get off dairy, but the truth is, I feel like I already don't eat 80% of what most people out there eat (outside the Paleo community, obviously). Just LET ME KEEP MY FREAKING DAIRY, y'know?!! ;-) (All full-fat, organic, and/or fermented: heavy cream, Greek yogurt, sour cream, butter, and cheese. Lots of cheese.)

In terms of quantity, dairy is my biggest departure from pure Paleo. But if I'm at a restaurant where they serve warm, fresh bread, I have a piece or two, that sort of thing. (Not celiac and no gluten sensitivity that I've ever noticed.) Overall, my "cheats" are few, but I do wish I could tighten things up.

In terms of body comp though, dairy might be a factor, but I know darn well I have much, much bigger problems with inadequate sleep, too much stress, and massively negative thinking.

*And here's kind of the larger issue for me: Sometimes I feel like my non-Paleo eating gets out of hand. (Maybe in one week, I'll have a few crackers from my roommate's drawer, a piece of cake at work, a late-night cookie, and a ton of peanut butter...and not even the natural kind, gasp!) BUT...then I'll be at a supermarket and I get reminded of what most "normal" people are eating EVERY DAY, and I think to myself, jeez, even on my WORST day, I'm nowhere NEAR most of that cr@p. The things I consider "bad" for ME are still miles above what the average person has on a daily basis. And while I will strive for consistent improvement within my own definitions of what's good and bad, it does help to see where I am in the grand scheme. (No, I'm not proud of comparing myself to others this way, but what can I say? It helps. And I'm not judging those other people...just using the spectrum of food consumption as a tool to keep things in perspective.)

So every time I get down on myself for not doing a Whole30, I step back and realize that even with the few things I eat here and there that are "off the rails," I'm most of the way there. I do want to do "the real deal" just to see if going without dairy for a while makes any difference. I know I'll do it eventually. I guess at the moment, I'm just enjoying not being so hard on myself. I mean, I used to feel really guilty and scared if I ate something horrendous. I don't feel good about it now, but I keep it in its proper context -- a here and there thing. I'm more than 80/20 but less than 90/10. I think in time I'll tighten it up but there are other things going on in my life right now that I wish were a little better. I still do turn to food for comfort sometimes, knowing full well I shouldn't. But as long as that 85/15 stays there and doesn't become 70/30 and then 60/40, I'm okay with it.

That said, I do admire the people who can go full-on and stay that way for the long haul. I'd like to get there at some point but would never make this way of eating define my existence to the point where I literally can't join friends at a restaurant or go on vacation where I'm not in control of my food supply. What's the point of using Paleo to optimize your health, longevity, and physique if you can't leave your house? Lotta fun looking great and living to 110 will be then...

2
Ce7e28769d92d5de5533e775b1de966e

on May 16, 2012
at 04:57 PM

It's just going to be different for everyone. I mean, not one sock fits all and every body is different, right? My goals are different than yours.

Me: eliminating food items, the few that I had to, wasn't hard. It was changing my sleeping habits, more sleep!, screen time, none two hours before bed and never in bed unless sick!, things along those lines were where I had difficulty. Screen time is good - sleep I'm still working on.

All in all, outside of a few bits and bobbles, I'm quite happy with what I have going on. Eating well - my way, skipping about and making sure there are good times and smiles to be had. I'm kind. I don't restrict myself so much that I can't celebrate with friends or if I'm traveling or on random adventures. IMO it's overall health: physically, mentally, socially, personally where it's at.

I know too well, unfortunately, that life is too short so I'm doing what I can to extend mine but still making sure that I'm enjoying myself.

Note: Check out the Whole9 elevator pitch. It's damn fine.

2
45ace03a0eff1219943d746cfb1c4197

(3661)

on May 16, 2012
at 04:23 PM

After I did my first Whole30, I could not imagine adding anything back to my diet that was not Paleo. My reasons are 100% health related, and my diet is 100% Paleo. That means I carefully purchase and prepare virtually everything I eat.

Over time I've tried eating in restaurants or at friends' homes, and the results are painfully horrendous. So it's not that I have some overwhelming commitment to Paleo, Paleo, Paleo. It's simply that it is what works for me. I have even given myself permission on unusual occasions to venture off the path. I just can't bring myself to do it.

C4ed6ba382aed2eefc18e7877999a5de

(1579)

on May 16, 2012
at 09:10 PM

do you find other ways to connect/spend time with people? I find that when I'm doing all my own cooking, I spend less time with others as a result.

45ace03a0eff1219943d746cfb1c4197

(3661)

on May 17, 2012
at 01:45 PM

Absolutely, we invite people, friends and relatives, to our home. I cook. It works out well for us. I've had awful experiences in the past when people serve food specifically purchased or prepared for me, and I can't eat it or, worse, do eat it and get sick.

Ebcbbdcb8b727e69e06eaa102d49a84c

(1804)

on May 17, 2012
at 08:28 PM

Same for me. I did venture off paleo a few times after the Whole30 but I knew ahead of time how horrible I would feel, ate it, felt horrible, and vowed to not eat it anymore! The elimination really did it for me.

2
782d92f4127823bdfb2ddfcbcf961d0e

on May 16, 2012
at 03:39 PM

I agree with Twinkletoes, there are many different opinions on what Paleo is. That being said, even if you try to stick with your diet 100% it will be very difficult. Unpaleo ingredients are ubiquitous and impossible to completely avoid. You just do the best you can. Don't worry, be happy!

1
D613cc4b9409009d5735a23e9fec5886

(143)

on May 16, 2012
at 11:04 PM

I'm new to Paleo but not to low-carbing. It's the only way of eating that helps me lose weight or maintain at least. I've been on Paleo on and off about 2 weeks. I'm reading the Loren Cordain Paleo book which promotes kind of an 85/15 rule when you start Paleo - easing into it. I'm hoping I can get past stage 1. I'm finding it very hard to give up a little artificial sweetener in my coffee and tea, I still use half n half in my coffee, and an occasional bit of Gorgonzola cheese - my favorite. However I was definitely eating too much cheese before and have cut way, way back. Oh and wine. That's my other vice. Trying to cut it a glass every other day.

However I can already tell that some of my stomach issues (was previously frequently gas-y and bloated) are going away since going more Paleo. I don't know if I'm a little gluten intolerant or maybe even lactose intolerant but either way its helping. My fridge is stocked with a ton of fruits and veggies and pure things so I know I'm getting the benefits. Today I'm down 2 pounds. Not much but I'll take it.

I'd like to get to 100% Paleo but I'm not pushing it for fear that I'll give up too soon. The entire concept of Paleo and not eating chemically processed foods makes so much sense to me. Especially because I'm a blood cancer survivor. Chemicals and toxins are a no-no - I don't want cancer twice.

1
193b7fb0fec8913d5ebb3b99a04d21c6

(2918)

on May 16, 2012
at 09:04 PM

I think a lot of your question has to do with WHY someone chose to go Paleo in the first place. A lot of people who are Celiac, have IBS, etc, don't really have the option to do anything except 100% Paleo.

For me, I went Paleo because I feel it's the healthiest lifestyle choice I could make for myself, but since I didn't have any major health issues that were the catalyst for driving me toward Paleo, I can indulge in the occasional cheat for whatever the reason. It might be a social reason, it might be that I really just want a bucket of popcorn at the movies (I was just reading a thread about that and I really want popcorn now). Some people might not consider me Paleo since I don't always watch what oils I'm consuming and I don't always eat grass fed beef. Many people on this site have a general idea of what Paleo is and to some extend follow it. It's nice that on PH there are all different versions of Paleo, but we all have the idea of healthier living in mind.

1
Fc6a9e07f6056d465573c8969d3a2ddd

(370)

on May 16, 2012
at 06:28 PM

My 80/20 reasons:

  1. Priorities. To be 100% paleo, you need a good bit of time and money; as a grad student, I'm short on both. To paraphrase PaleoVenus: the stress of 100% adherence is not worth the extra bump in vitality. So I try to co-optimize for schedule, budget, and health, and right now I'm okay with how I'm doing on all fronts.

  2. Hedonism. I'm too much of a foodie to pass on vrai pain au chocolat or my aunt's buttermilk brownies when I get the opportunity.

0
66974b2cb291799dcd661b7dec99a9e2

(11121)

on May 17, 2012
at 04:14 PM

As someone else said above: "I don't relate to the word "cheat" or to the concept of "holding back."

I could be classified as 100% paleo. It's not because I am following some strict paleo protocol. It is a result of my evolving paleo lifestyle and naturally just losing all interest in processed food, sugar, etc. This happened over time. I have just lost all interest in crap food, does not tempt me in the least. I have learned to listen to my body and learned how I really 'feel' after eating food. I feel the absolute best when I eat great food. I don't need books, or paleo gurus or even good scientific studies to tell me what is best to eat, we all have the innate knowledge from our long evolutionary journey that allows us to know what is best to eat, but society has made it difficult for us to listen to our biological selves.

There is an old spiritual saying: 'we are all born with 1000 eyes but most of us only open 2 of them'. As I progress through my Life journey I have worked hard to open more eyes so I can see beyond the self imposed limits of society & culture, I want to see more and more.

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 17, 2012
at 04:51 PM

SO TRUE, Josh! We've lost so much of our ability to listen to our own bodies. How many people think it's "normal" to have headaches every day, or be in constant pain? Our bodies send us messages all the time, but few of us know how to interpret them. "We all have the innate knowledge from our long evolutionary journey that allows us to know what is best to eat, but society has made it difficult for us to listen to our biological selves."

Fd70d71f4f8195c3a098eda4fc817d4f

(8014)

on May 17, 2012
at 04:56 PM

And yes, society has conspired to make it nearly impossible to listen to our bodies even when we're trying. Addictive food additives, the easy way out (pill popping), go go go...

0
91882203467f64f68f25f58f1caeee68

(1017)

on May 17, 2012
at 01:18 AM

Cystic acne that won't go away made me go 100%. I'm sticking with it 100% for at least 3 months to see if I can achieve clear skin, and not have to wake up everyday and wonder if I'm going to have a new cyst. I also have Celiac and want my gut to heal as much as possible, and Paleo is a good diet for that (GAPS may be better, but seems way more restrictive).

7b0fc3bfeef02de39dcbec8aa38f746b

on May 21, 2012
at 07:57 PM

What foods are you avoiding (and conversely, eating lots of to help combat the acne)? Not sure your age, but I've dealt with acne (mainly cystic too...ugh) for years (I'm 22 now) and haven't had *too* much luck with Paleo...maybe I'm not doing the right things, or for long enough. Would love to hear your feedback!

91882203467f64f68f25f58f1caeee68

(1017)

on May 22, 2012
at 11:34 AM

I'm 28. I'm down to seafood, grass fed beef, liver, eggs, bananas, apples, celery, cabbage, and not much else. It's improved my skin a ton but I'm ready to kill someone my diet is so limited. Took me about a month to clear completely, and now I'm dealing with scars and minor tiny pimples that are gone in a day which I can deal with. before I was getting cysts that took 3 weeks to heal.

0
C4ed6ba382aed2eefc18e7877999a5de

(1579)

on May 16, 2012
at 09:27 PM

In terms of comparing paleo to vegetarianism... I think it's fair to say that it's easier to find affordable and available options for vegetarians today than it is for paleos. A vegetarian can walk into most stores or restaurants and find something they can eat. If you're paleo, it's a lot easier to run into things like additives, vegetable oils, and gluten simply because there isn't a general awareness that this stuff is bad for you or that there might be people who are trying to avoid it. That's where my 20% (or so... it's usually less than that) comes in. I try to prioritize spending time with family and friends while at the same time keeping in mind what's good for my health. Sometimes that means eating something I wouldn't normally eat, and sometimes it means deciding I'm going to spend time with people in ways that don't involve food and doing my cooking for myself. It's definitely a balance, and I'm still working on finding the best way that works for me!

0
Cccb899526fb5908f64176e0a74ed2d9

(2801)

on May 16, 2012
at 08:16 PM

I'm presently battling a horrible addiction to sweeteners - aspartame, sucralose, stevia, the works. I also eat dairy but have no intention of giving it up.

At the moment I'm limiting myself to stevia and it's still incredibly difficult. Diet Dr. Pepper...must...resist...

2a00b9a42e4cb6e489a0e69d20714576

(3043)

on May 16, 2012
at 11:52 PM

Watch Sweet Misery, you'll quickly stop the sweeteners.

D613cc4b9409009d5735a23e9fec5886

(143)

on May 16, 2012
at 10:58 PM

My husband told me to Google Stevia recently and I did. There's some nasty stuff about it out there too. I'm in the same boat, addicted to Sweet N Low, trying to move to Stevia but it seems even that is not safe. I'm trying to ween myself off but I can't give it up in my morning cup of coffee.

Cccb899526fb5908f64176e0a74ed2d9

(2801)

on May 17, 2012
at 12:53 AM

Thanks for the recommendation, I'll watch it and report back. Also, I share your pain with regards to the morning coffee, Liane. I've actually found that drinking the coffee sweetener-free with fat added (like coconut milk or dairy cream) is a nice alternative.

0
7b0fc3bfeef02de39dcbec8aa38f746b

on May 16, 2012
at 06:34 PM

Kation, I'd give that +20 if I could. Totally agree! Those are my exact reasons, and I will be a grad student myself soon (I'm currently a very recent grad), so I can relate!

Fc6a9e07f6056d465573c8969d3a2ddd

(370)

on May 17, 2012
at 06:00 PM

Congratulations, and good luck! The key for me was learning to cook for leftovers. That is, not just to eat leftovers, but to make the most of my time in the kitchen by preparing a couple of extra dishes along with whatever I'm actually having for dinner. That way, on days when I eat all three meals at my desk, I don't have to resort to meal bar pseudo-food or overprice takeout.

0
0905a0f8cd1e48f6d39fe625a65b6ef1

(2890)

on May 16, 2012
at 03:21 PM

Gawd, it was the thrill of the kill that made me go 100 percent a few days ago. Fresh blood on my hands, a hot short elk fur loin cloth, and the bone holding up my hair - what a heady feeling! The feel of the ground beneath my body as I slept was wondrous. And I can't rave enough about having to walk those long miles to get water. 100 percent paleo is the way to go, baby!

Okay, I'm being silly! But I think that for most of us, what is Paleo and what ain't can span differing ranges. I won't touch those safe starches, but others rely on them for energy. I loves me some fermented cod liver oil, but others prefer to get their A and D from more palatable sources. Then there are things like coffee, dairy, protein powder, yada yada yada. No one can say What Is Paleo because there isn't such a thing. It's all in our heads and bellies.

But I get the spirit of your question, and to answer it will say that I gave up the things that hurt my body and mind when I discovered they were hurting my body and mind. And I ain't ever goin' back...

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