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Husband's Concerns About Paleo

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 24, 2012 at 8:53 PM

I am working toward converting my family's diet over to paleo. My husband's biggest concern is his inability to get much exercise, especially weight bearing exercise. He injured his lower back (L5-S1) which was incorrectly diagnosed as sciatica. By the time he was properly diagnosed with a herniated disc, the herniation had calcified and a (now known) hack doctor removed the calcification, scraping nerves and bone, causing nerve damage.

He has a neuro-stimulator implanted in his back and through acupuncture, he has regained feeling in his lower leg, but deals with constant pain. Once the temperatures warm up, he will be able to exercise in the pool, but the current temps cause his muscles to knot up and cause him even more pain.

I was diagnosed with type II diabetes and am really weak when it comes to will power. If there is bread in the house, I will eat it. If there is sugar and flour in the house, I will make cookies. If there are chips in the house, I will make dip and have a smorgasbord. I need the support of the entire family food-wise to get my glucose levels under control without medication. Can anyone offer talking points for me?

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e

(11157)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

Or donate it, if it's shelf-stable. Hate to see food go to waste, even if it's SAD.

4517f03b8a94fa57ed57ab60ab694b7d

on February 16, 2013
at 09:00 PM

I hate MG. I hate how MG attacks other users for being lazy, when she/it is fat enough to become obese. lazy much you fucking bitch?

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on July 04, 2012
at 03:30 PM

"Organic" on packages, then brings them to me to look at the ingredient list. Thanks for your input!

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on July 04, 2012
at 03:29 PM

It's been 2 months since I originally posted, and I am happy to report a Paleo household. They do eat more in the starch department than I do, but pastas, bottled salad dressings, store-bought mayo, crap oils, breads, etc., have all disappeared from our cupboards. We make dinner every night and have leftovers for breakfasts and lunches most days. Hubby is enjoying that he is losing weight. We still get push-back from the almost 8-year-old, but he is coming to terms with it. Grocery trips don't wind up with him reduced to tears because he can't have something. He looks for the word

3327924660b1e2f8f8fc4ca27fedf2b2

(2919)

on April 25, 2012
at 05:42 PM

Unless it's canned goods, most places won't accept food donations. However, if you donate your food to virtually any church/temple, you can be sure your food didn't go to waste.

C116f7e54620c6003b67cd4450a298cd

on April 25, 2012
at 01:30 AM

All the more reason to go Paleo. Grain (wheat) are addictors as bad as crack. The ups and downs causing crashes play heavily into depression. Read Mark Sisson's Primal Blue print. If you're eating right you REALLY don't have to work out soooooo damn hard anyway (or that often). Our country is FULL of anxious workoutaholics not going anywhere fast. I'm suffering from a couple separated ribs right now, so not working out (a little walking) for the next 2-3 weeks. Normally I'd be a mess emotionally thinking I was "loosing it" not anymore. I'm just cruising with the good food. Good luck

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on April 24, 2012
at 11:00 PM

He is definitely willing and often over does it because he misses his former very lean, very muscled, very athletic self. He battles depression because of what he used to do versus what limitations he faces on a daily basis because of his body. I think the change in diet will help our overall health, especially mental health.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on April 24, 2012
at 10:58 PM

Next time I want something sweet, I will try your "bad" treat. It sounds divine and will cull that craving. Thanks!

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21420)

on April 24, 2012
at 10:03 PM

My first 70lbs or so came off with nothing more than bi-weekly walking and fairly tight dieting.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on April 24, 2012
at 09:55 PM

I'm an angry carb addict. If my husband makes any comment (in a loving way) about what I am eating, I come unhinged. There are days I am truly amazed I am still married! We have a 19-year-old that will be leaving next month for 6 months and a 7-year-old. I am negotiating with the 7-year-old, lowering his processed food intake, without making him go cold turkey. (Yesterday he had to choose between his beloved Costco bagels and Nutrigrain bars.) He is getting better about eating what he is served. Thank you for your input. It really helps.

992862b1b9e443f83aa4e46d14833418

(264)

on April 24, 2012
at 09:44 PM

+1. And put your foot down about buying more junk, if you are the usual food shopper in your house.

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12 Answers

10
1a98a40ba8ffdc5aa28d1324d01c6c9f

(20378)

on April 24, 2012
at 09:05 PM

It is better to eat Paleo and not exercise than to not eat Paleo. With regards to the exercise. Walking, if possible, is good. Anything with dumbells is good.

7
1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

on April 24, 2012
at 10:34 PM

Not being able (or willing?) to exercise as much as one may like is not an even remotely good reason to not improve the quality of one's diet. IN fact, not exercising means it is even more important to improve one's diet.
You should still do paleo though as much as you can. Maybe seing you succeed and improve will motivate him to do the same.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on April 24, 2012
at 11:00 PM

He is definitely willing and often over does it because he misses his former very lean, very muscled, very athletic self. He battles depression because of what he used to do versus what limitations he faces on a daily basis because of his body. I think the change in diet will help our overall health, especially mental health.

C116f7e54620c6003b67cd4450a298cd

on April 25, 2012
at 01:30 AM

All the more reason to go Paleo. Grain (wheat) are addictors as bad as crack. The ups and downs causing crashes play heavily into depression. Read Mark Sisson's Primal Blue print. If you're eating right you REALLY don't have to work out soooooo damn hard anyway (or that often). Our country is FULL of anxious workoutaholics not going anywhere fast. I'm suffering from a couple separated ribs right now, so not working out (a little walking) for the next 2-3 weeks. Normally I'd be a mess emotionally thinking I was "loosing it" not anymore. I'm just cruising with the good food. Good luck

7
E7adfe31507efb7c935f618a829f56d6

on April 24, 2012
at 09:23 PM

Don't beat yourself up about the will power. you're just doing what you evolved to do, eat high density, caloric foods if you find them! There's a reason that stuff is so tempting and hard to stop eating. The problem is not you, it's that the food is engineered to evoke that response and it's so abundant, we have to impose our own restrictions to make it scarce, the way it would have been pre-agriculture and evil industrialized food complex. Any way, that's a bit off the point I suppose...

As to the talking points...I find action speaks louder than words. Are you the maker of meals in your household? Make a totally paleo meal right down to the dessert (there are some AWESOME resources out there, just google "paleo [enter any food item here]" and you'll find a recipe. Include something with bacon :). Once everyone is busy chewing, that will be your moment to start talking about Paleo!

4
992862b1b9e443f83aa4e46d14833418

(264)

on April 24, 2012
at 09:49 PM

"They" say it's 80% Diet and 20% exercise that leads to fitness. I'd have to agree with that. Even if your husband doesn't move much at all he should drop pounds (although not build muscle mass) by not eating sugar and processed carbs alone.

Have you considered the Whole30 approach? I finished that not too long ago and now my husband is on board about to finish his first week on the program. It's not easy but I find that I adapt better to this sort of thing by going completely cold turkey. (Mmmm. Turkey)

3
3327924660b1e2f8f8fc4ca27fedf2b2

(2919)

on April 24, 2012
at 09:29 PM

Throw your horrible food away.

992862b1b9e443f83aa4e46d14833418

(264)

on April 24, 2012
at 09:44 PM

+1. And put your foot down about buying more junk, if you are the usual food shopper in your house.

1d0497f8781845ab371b479455bfee8e

(11157)

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

Or donate it, if it's shelf-stable. Hate to see food go to waste, even if it's SAD.

3327924660b1e2f8f8fc4ca27fedf2b2

(2919)

on April 25, 2012
at 05:42 PM

Unless it's canned goods, most places won't accept food donations. However, if you donate your food to virtually any church/temple, you can be sure your food didn't go to waste.

3
8d454fc50d6d58643d6f8b0d1e7ea8ea

on April 24, 2012
at 09:15 PM

I didn't exercise when I switched to Paleo - but with the weight I've lost, exercising is now a whole lot more accessible - and fun!

246ebf68e35743f62e5e187891b9cba0

(21420)

on April 24, 2012
at 10:03 PM

My first 70lbs or so came off with nothing more than bi-weekly walking and fairly tight dieting.

2
9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

on July 04, 2012
at 05:04 AM

When I first went Paleo, I was the only one in the household that did it. My wife is an enthusiastic bread, pasta, and processed food consumer (and she is thin and healthy!). We have kids and kid's food is generally the same.

When we make dinner, it is usually a protein (meat or seafood), starch, and vegetable. To accommodate all of us (I do most of the cooking), I started to make the vegetable dish large (i.e. an entire bunch of asparagus or broccolini, two trays of crispy roasted kale, large salad, etc), and I would eat the protein and veggies and skip the starch, and everyone else would eat all three.

I also never buy any processed or grain based food. My wife might or she might get take out from somewhere, but I never buy it.

Over time I started to introduce more paleo friendly starches such as roasted sweet potatoes. My family grew to like them. They also started to eat more vegetables and salad, since that is what was available.

Over time, this gradually changed the family diet. We now have pasta once every week or two instead of 3-4 times per week. Nobody seems to miss it. When we used to order pizza, we now order kebabs. Honestly nobody seems to mind or care, and where about 25% of the food in the house was paleo, now it is more like 75%. There is a lot of delicious food available in the paleo diet incuding steak, roasts, lamb, seafood, shell fish, and all sorts of vegetables (which are fun to cook and delicious if you learn how to do it), so for us it really hasn't been a problem. This has allowed me to keep to my diet while also keeping everyone else healthy on a different diet, though our diets continue to converge.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on July 04, 2012
at 03:29 PM

It's been 2 months since I originally posted, and I am happy to report a Paleo household. They do eat more in the starch department than I do, but pastas, bottled salad dressings, store-bought mayo, crap oils, breads, etc., have all disappeared from our cupboards. We make dinner every night and have leftovers for breakfasts and lunches most days. Hubby is enjoying that he is losing weight. We still get push-back from the almost 8-year-old, but he is coming to terms with it. Grocery trips don't wind up with him reduced to tears because he can't have something. He looks for the word

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on July 04, 2012
at 03:30 PM

"Organic" on packages, then brings them to me to look at the ingredient list. Thanks for your input!

2
96bf58d8c6bd492dc5b8ae46203fe247

(37227)

on April 24, 2012
at 10:29 PM

My 17-year-old grandson lives with me and eats SAD although he helps himself to a lot of my fruit and meat.

The mental trick I've used to avoid eating any of his neo-treats is to say out loud to him that I won't. Basically, in my mind I'd be stealing if I ate any of his things. So, if I absolutely have to have a treat, I either have to select from the whole foods I have or get in my truck and go buy something bad. On that system, I haven't eaten any neo-treats since a planned splurge at Christmas.

My "bad" treat from the healthier stuff is to put a handful or 2 of frozen berries/fruit in a dish and pour on a little heavy cream. It's very satisfying and doesn't undermine my overall health status.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on April 24, 2012
at 10:58 PM

Next time I want something sweet, I will try your "bad" treat. It sounds divine and will cull that craving. Thanks!

2
D290734f36a9ae03e3f60e0fa088d7ed

(1304)

on April 24, 2012
at 09:08 PM

Sorry to hear about your and your husband's health problems. I am also super weak when it comes to will power. I will eat all the candy and cookies in a 1 mile radius if given the chance. They key is not to give yourself the chance. A lot of people to a little paleo cleansing ritual where they throw away all the sugar, flour, grains, etc. That way you wont have the temptation.

In terms of talking points you should emphasize all the benefits of paleo eating. Your family loves you and will want you around for a while! Paleo will help alleviate some of your health issues. Also, you get to eat all sorts of delicious things you couldn't eat on a conventional low fat diet. Talk about all the bacon, steak, and eggs you get to eat. Make lots of guacamole. Make full fat whipped cream with a little stevia, serve it over berries with dark chocolate shavings, and see if anyone misses candy. They will buy into it because it isn't like dieting, really. You shouldn't think of it as denying them cookies - you're granting them bacon!

1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on April 25, 2012
at 06:34 AM

Does your husband exercise at home? There's a good exercise system where you get a lot of work but without a lot of strain on the body. Basically you would use 30% of the repetitions it would take you to get to complete muscular failure on an exercise. So if it takes you 10 reps to get to the point of muscular failure, you are now going to only use 3 repetitions but for 10-20 sets with 30 seconds rest between sets. Stop before the sets become hard but work at trying to add a set when possible but without straining.
If you are using bodyweight exercises like pushups, pullups, freehand squats etc. Use 30% of the repetions, the same as you would for exercises with weights.
The same system can be applied to mini workouts. For example, where you perform a few sets of an exercise during tv commercial breaks or sets scattered throughout the day. By the end of the day you have performed a lot of work.
Get this really cheap e-book ($3.53), that explains it much better. The title is really lame but it's actually a good system. http://www.amazon.com/The-Effortless-Exercise-System-ebook/dp/B005HB8PFO

1
78cb3c4f70de5db2adb52b6b9671894b

on April 24, 2012
at 09:20 PM

I am also very weak when it comes to will-power, but I also realize that I cannot make everyone in the household live under my rules because I have a problem. Because for me, it's really that any food can set me off on a binge, so my "ideal" environment is one where there is nothing in the fridge and I have to grocery shop everyday for just that day's groceries using a card that has a limited amount on it. I am not trying to exaggerate...I have a pretty out of control problem. However, I know it's not fair to force others to make my life safe. In the end, it is my choice because I know that "unsafe" foods do not have arms and legs that force me to binge. My eating problem controls my life, but it shouldn't control others' lives.

But yes, please ask for support...especially because this has potential health benefits for the whole family. Talk about trying to incorporate whole foods and perhaps cook together so that this whole switch is a positive experience for everyone. Is your family your husband and children? Or are the other members older? If they decide to support, you, great. I think talking to your husband/family about how this is very important for you might help. Tell them about your concerns, fears, and hopes during this paleo journey and how badly you want to be healthy for the family, and most of all yourself. Let them know that you're excited to start, but might need a little more help in the beginning to get to the point of trusting yourself. Don't blame or shame or guilt-trip them if they're hesitant to completely give up foods. If they're on board to eat well with you, excellent. If they want to take it slower or have an occasional treat that you're afraid of, maybe you can ask them if they can put it somewhere else among their things (like the bag of chips in a desk drawer), rather than the kitchen or if it's okay to go out (like ice cream) for it.

Can you ask for help through a means of distraction? If you tend to go for these foods when alone, make plans to play a board game or a movie on nights when you think you might need a distraction when you want to eat unhealthily. Maybe instead of baking cookies, start up a hobby to keep your hands busy.

Good luck. You deserve health and happiness.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on April 24, 2012
at 09:55 PM

I'm an angry carb addict. If my husband makes any comment (in a loving way) about what I am eating, I come unhinged. There are days I am truly amazed I am still married! We have a 19-year-old that will be leaving next month for 6 months and a 7-year-old. I am negotiating with the 7-year-old, lowering his processed food intake, without making him go cold turkey. (Yesterday he had to choose between his beloved Costco bagels and Nutrigrain bars.) He is getting better about eating what he is served. Thank you for your input. It really helps.

1
A3ff262a2686d79789e09a26013901b3

on April 24, 2012
at 09:03 PM

I would read this blog from Robb Wolf first: http://robbwolf.com/2012/04/04/paleo-diet-convince-it/. This may give you a little insight.

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