5

votes

Are you seen by your social and familial circles as a REBEL or a SQUARE for your paleo ways?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 17, 2011 at 1:46 AM

Sure, you might be judged initially as a completely insane renegade, given the amounts of butter, animal fat, and other delights you unabashedly hork down in front of family and friends.

But then...they ask a few questions...and you start drawing on your bank of long-accumulated paleo knowledge. Suddenly you're talking about the proper balance of omegas, the way your body reacts to excess fructose, the process of ketosis, etc. You've revealed yourself to be a huge nutrition nerd, albeit one that glug-glugs heavy cream into your coffee with reckless abandon.

So what's the final verdict? In the end, are you perceived to be an insubordinate rebel peeling off of a dietary cliff Thelma-and-Louise style, or a nerdy [or even...sigh...orthorexic] square who follows a set of dietary rules so complex they deserve their own auditing organization?

(Finally, it's OK if you want to answer that you don't really care what anyone thinks because paleo works for you and that's all that matters to you...but...just for fun...could you at least give the verdict that you think your loved ones would render?)

F7cf9588bc47db8b3b7ddeb5172a9311

(455)

on October 20, 2012
at 11:43 PM

I feel your pain. I have several friends who know I have a "special diet" and, because I eat vegetables, assume that it's vegetarianism or veganism. The first time this happened I actually laughed in their face.

E7dc4f2e3998906dd3213973a3c10d50

on March 22, 2011
at 03:12 PM

Hear hear. It's funny that THAT is often the most shocking thing for people.

E7dc4f2e3998906dd3213973a3c10d50

on March 22, 2011
at 03:11 PM

I get called "wizard" a lot too. :D

2422dcf52da053d610d816fe90d93098

(177)

on March 22, 2011
at 11:21 AM

Great answer. That goes for me too!

1471beca8e3adff4ae2f89d10e5f7acb

(6550)

on March 18, 2011
at 12:04 AM

It's funny because it's true.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on March 17, 2011
at 11:38 PM

Awesome answer.

24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on March 17, 2011
at 08:15 PM

This might be better suited to the comment section under the original question. I have coffee with heavy cream too- it's a pretty popular combo for those of us who tolerate dairy, even if it isn't "paleo."

D67e7b481854b02110d5a5b21d6789b1

(4101)

on March 17, 2011
at 06:50 PM

\o/ familygrok!

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930

(5242)

on March 17, 2011
at 05:05 PM

moderation for some things means abstaining.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on March 17, 2011
at 05:04 PM

Fist bump to my fellow padawan!

6a4fd73b4ae4761eefec8e0d38e6f224

(1008)

on March 17, 2011
at 04:55 PM

I'm not talking about a keen interest; I'm talking about a preoccupation that is beyond one's control and ultimately impedes quality of life. Of course, it's not easy to see it as a problem when you're in the thick of it, but once your interest in food supplants your interest in life - or you can't tell the difference between the two - you're in trouble.

58cc17a77bca6e503dcf6bf6471b76a1

(478)

on March 17, 2011
at 04:38 PM

Same thing with my parents - they're "everything in moderation" philosophy..which I think not quite in moderation (cook in vegetable oil, eat gluten and grains daily)..hm....

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:15 PM

I have grandparents who seem to have that motto. 8(

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:14 PM

My mom is an "everything in moderation" person and doesn't see the benefit of completely cutting anything out.

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:11 PM

Dietary evolution: I love this!

A89f9751a97c3082802dc0bcbe4e9208

(13978)

on March 17, 2011
at 02:59 PM

I love how you've worded this question! It's fun to read!

5266ac5977ec9d80ac8047697dbbe55b

(738)

on March 17, 2011
at 01:26 PM

Aren't we are SUPPOSED to be obsessed w/ food? People come down so hard on anorexics for being "obsessed with food"..but I think that is what we are here to do, amongst a few other things. If we weren't obsessed with food, we wouldn't be the creatures we are today, with tools, societies, technology, and the other results of our more advanced brains and bodies. I think many treatment centers are wasting their time trying to teach people recovering from eating disorders how to eat "healthy" according to the "healthy" SAD. Addiction may just be the modern "disease" of strong instincts.

9cfa1ab909f6f89544be665d4ef6e3ea

on March 17, 2011
at 12:08 PM

Oh, no! Burn the apostate!

Bad3a78e228c67a7513c28f17c36b3cf

(1387)

on March 17, 2011
at 11:00 AM

Keep working on her gently. I finally got my parents to do it a few months ago, and the results have been great!

Ed71ab1c75c6a9bd217a599db0a3e117

(25477)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:56 AM

My friends and family are amazed by my changein attitude as an MD and more astonished at my personal transformation based upon my current philosophy

Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

(3524)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:32 AM

BTW I think they see me more as a square, someone with this new but possibly interesting idea...They would love it if I were much less strict, you know...

6a4fd73b4ae4761eefec8e0d38e6f224

(1008)

on March 17, 2011
at 02:39 AM

Yes, I'd say that's true. And I can't totally disagree with them. But that doesn't mean this isn't the right way to nourish myself. Honestly, I feel like paleo is my only shot at freedom from compulsive food tracking (which I still do). Until now I always felt like I had to choose between counting every molecule and getting fat.

D83e454e794d761ab524814c0ff8f838

(531)

on March 17, 2011
at 02:30 AM

I think my vegan friends just think I'm a jerk!

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on March 17, 2011
at 02:28 AM

So...does that mean due to your history you're perceived by family as orthorexic/square, despite your improved state?

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on March 17, 2011
at 02:16 AM

So...does that leave you a rebel or a square? ;)

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23 Answers

6
Be1dbd31e4a3fccd4394494aa5db256d

(17969)

on March 17, 2011
at 02:27 AM

I am wise because I helped my mother lower her blood pressure and my dad probably thinks that I imbued magnesium with magical feel-good powers (I just gave him citrate which actually gets absorbed).

So I'm a wizard, and wizards are geeks but they also get to use awesome magic.

E7dc4f2e3998906dd3213973a3c10d50

on March 22, 2011
at 03:11 PM

I get called "wizard" a lot too. :D

5
Ce762ef3660ab44dbc72fdd7ff8fb168

on March 17, 2011
at 09:12 AM

Smug bastard who has lost a lot of weight, but is certain to die from "cholesterol".

2422dcf52da053d610d816fe90d93098

(177)

on March 22, 2011
at 11:21 AM

Great answer. That goes for me too!

4
6a4fd73b4ae4761eefec8e0d38e6f224

(1008)

on March 17, 2011
at 02:23 AM

I have a history with eating disorders so my credibility is sort of shot in the family circle. They probably see my interest in paleo eating as another manifestation of my obsession with food, but they indulge me, because hey - "at least she's eating." Honestly, if the roles were reversed I probably wouldn't take me seriously until I'd stuck with it for a year or two, or until some measurable health benefits showed up. So far I've only been at this a few months.

That said - I have got them using coconut oil, and interested in the idea of grass-fed meat. As I told my Mom last week: "It's not just that you are what you eat; you are what you eat ate."

6a4fd73b4ae4761eefec8e0d38e6f224

(1008)

on March 17, 2011
at 02:39 AM

Yes, I'd say that's true. And I can't totally disagree with them. But that doesn't mean this isn't the right way to nourish myself. Honestly, I feel like paleo is my only shot at freedom from compulsive food tracking (which I still do). Until now I always felt like I had to choose between counting every molecule and getting fat.

5266ac5977ec9d80ac8047697dbbe55b

(738)

on March 17, 2011
at 01:26 PM

Aren't we are SUPPOSED to be obsessed w/ food? People come down so hard on anorexics for being "obsessed with food"..but I think that is what we are here to do, amongst a few other things. If we weren't obsessed with food, we wouldn't be the creatures we are today, with tools, societies, technology, and the other results of our more advanced brains and bodies. I think many treatment centers are wasting their time trying to teach people recovering from eating disorders how to eat "healthy" according to the "healthy" SAD. Addiction may just be the modern "disease" of strong instincts.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on March 17, 2011
at 02:28 AM

So...does that mean due to your history you're perceived by family as orthorexic/square, despite your improved state?

6a4fd73b4ae4761eefec8e0d38e6f224

(1008)

on March 17, 2011
at 04:55 PM

I'm not talking about a keen interest; I'm talking about a preoccupation that is beyond one's control and ultimately impedes quality of life. Of course, it's not easy to see it as a problem when you're in the thick of it, but once your interest in food supplants your interest in life - or you can't tell the difference between the two - you're in trouble.

3
Eedf46c82d0356d1d46dda5f9782ef36

(4464)

on March 17, 2011
at 12:40 PM

Rebel - I don't eat the cake.

E7dc4f2e3998906dd3213973a3c10d50

on March 22, 2011
at 03:12 PM

Hear hear. It's funny that THAT is often the most shocking thing for people.

3
0d2dec01a5ed9363a9915e111ae13f7e

on March 17, 2011
at 02:29 AM

Squares-ville, but it is all good. Long time friends and family are cool with it, and I am seldom noticed in social food settings as the odd man out. I mask my "paleo-strictness" with an easy-going attitude.

2
89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on March 18, 2011
at 08:00 AM

My wife thinks I'm ok (lucky me), and she is paleo too, as are the little boys. But the rest of the family reacts kind of strange: they find me strange, but they are proud of me (us) as well...

A few weeks ago, a Belgian scientific magazine (a bit like scientific american) had an article on both barefoot running and paleo-diets. My father immediately noticed it, and sent it to me. Proud that his son has been doing things like this for three years, and now it catching on in mainstream (although very, very slowly over here).

I've never been a rebel, just for being contrarian, but if I have good reasons to do or be otherwise that most, I just don't care what people think. I run and hike barefoot. I say no to cake. I lick my plate.

No, the latter is not entirely true, at least, I don't do it while eating out. I just do it at home.

2
D67e7b481854b02110d5a5b21d6789b1

on March 17, 2011
at 02:40 PM

My family views me as a total orthorexic square. But I prefer Jedi-In-Training ;)

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on March 17, 2011
at 05:04 PM

Fist bump to my fellow padawan!

D67e7b481854b02110d5a5b21d6789b1

(4101)

on March 17, 2011
at 06:50 PM

\o/ familygrok!

2
1471beca8e3adff4ae2f89d10e5f7acb

on March 17, 2011
at 01:40 PM

I'm a total square. I used to sing "Whiskey Bent and Hell Bound" with my posse, but now I just get "All My Rowdy Friends Have Settled Down" sung at me.

1471beca8e3adff4ae2f89d10e5f7acb

(6550)

on March 18, 2011
at 12:04 AM

It's funny because it's true.

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on March 17, 2011
at 11:38 PM

Awesome answer.

2
91c2e2a35e578e2e79ce7d631b753879

on March 17, 2011
at 01:17 PM

I've convinced my brother, who has - along with his wife - jumped on the paleo/primal bandwagon whole-heartedly. Our sisters, on the other hand, think we're nuts (especially the RN). My husband and I have also convinced a couple of our (diabetic) employees that this is the way they should be eating and I've become their own personal Health and Nutrition Guru. The rest of them, though, think we're nuts.

So, neither a rebel nor a square - just off my rocker, apparently.

2
0adda19045a3641edac0008364b91110

(1146)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:03 AM

My relatives think I am crazy, and for some odd reason they think I am vegan just because I eat vegetables. They have seen me eat pounds of meat in one sitting countless of times but they seem to overlook the meat and see the veggies. You don't know how much times I have been given fake eggs, soy meat, and a bunch of other crap because they think I am that kinda of healthy, you know, the ones afraid of fat and cholesterol. They also think I am weird because one: I don't eat tortillas, a big no-no for a Mexican; two I don't eat beans, another big no-no for a Mexican, and three because I eat weird vegetables. You could imagine how much awkward stares I get at parties. Their motto is, your going to die anyway, so why bother.

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:15 PM

I have grandparents who seem to have that motto. 8(

F7cf9588bc47db8b3b7ddeb5172a9311

(455)

on October 20, 2012
at 11:43 PM

I feel your pain. I have several friends who know I have a "special diet" and, because I eat vegetables, assume that it's vegetarianism or veganism. The first time this happened I actually laughed in their face.

2
Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

on March 17, 2011
at 02:50 AM

My family first thought I was some sort of fanatic, finally has ended up accepting what I do when I came up with super results on my lipids test. I am not sure though how much of my arguments they agree with, and how much they accept just to avoid arguing with me...

Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

(3524)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:32 AM

BTW I think they see me more as a square, someone with this new but possibly interesting idea...They would love it if I were much less strict, you know...

1
74f5d2ff6567edd456d31dfb9b92af61

(5227)

on March 22, 2011
at 02:59 AM

I've always been the weird one, I think, in my family. However, something about my diet simply makes sense and my family is taking heed.

When I first went GF, I shared my findings with my sister and she took to it right away. She's lost something like eighty pounds and is in the process of transforming herself in celebration of her thirtieth birthday and is thrilled with the results. She's actually very close to being Paleo, since she recently dropped dairy as she discovered it makes her sick.

Recently, I spoke to my mum about the research I've found and how it might help her, and she's agreed to attempt a gluten free diet. I called her tonight and she seems pleased with the progress she's made, and I'm delighted that she took the time to listen to me and seriously consider what I was saying. She asked many questions and took notes, and told me she'll call me after her next grocery haul to cross-reference it with me. Because my mother is trying it, my kid brother has also agreed to try GF to see if it helps him any. He, too, has many questions and is impressed with the research I've linked him to.

The fact that they listened to me and regarded my feelings as important when I conversed with them, and trust in me and my judgment enough to emulate my diet, makes me feel very loved and accepted. I'm very proud of them for having an open mind and taking charge of their health. My family is pretty awesome. :)

1
B1fcaceba952861d0324bdb291edbbe0

(3159)

on March 22, 2011
at 02:30 AM

I'm a square peg in a world of round holes in pretty much every aspect of my life, I think my family is just use to my idiosnycrasies. They think I'm a nut and all ... but we all have our quirks, some more than others. XD Won't stop me from bein' paleo though.

1
Da681d976130df15aac3984013aaad6d

on March 18, 2011
at 08:13 AM

Pretty much everyone is saying "what does your doctor say?" I haven't told him. I'm sure he'd think I'm crazy. My vegan sister thinks I'm killing myself, it's The China Syndrome vs. Paleo, impossible to agree with each other, the only exception being that we both eat a lot of plants.

Seems like a lot of people think of this as totally fringe (which I guess it is?) and nutty.
"It's that caveman diet,"they say. As for the nerd stuff, I'm still trying to understand it before I start talking to other people about it.

1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 18, 2011
at 05:41 AM

I have always been considered the rebel and the weird one for my various dietary experiments. Including, I will admit, 5 years of vegetarianism. But I never gave up real butter, whole milk, cheese or eggs. Not going the low-fat franken-foods direction even had the veggies mad at me. Glad I finally found solid evidence of the quality of the Paleo diet. Still too soon to tell if it's the perfect diet for me, but I feel good on it and am seeing some lab test changes so it's good to be the rebel.

1
61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:19 PM

I think most of my coworkers view me as a square as all they hear when I say "I'm avoiding wheat" is "No bread." Lunch often ends up at some type of deli and, when I am tired of the salads, I get a sandwich or a wrap of some sort without the bread/tortilla. Even the people taking the order pause for a second, lol.

I'm pretty sure my husband doesn't know what to think as I used to give him the hunks of steak that had fat on them...now I devour them wholeheartedly! He must feel left out. 8)

1
Cfccbcf3450ac4919311ded8ef162d49

(2312)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:58 AM

I have two social circles - the paleo/fitness circle and the hillbilly/4h/country folk circle. I'm just a normal person in the first circle and probably a "hippy" in the second circle. Most of my family, including a large extended family probably think I'm a bit of a fanatic. It doesn't really matter what they think, but it's nice to know that I've affected a few to try and change their eating habits. :-)

1
Dc69594b2a1bbc32a6389924248387d6

on March 17, 2011
at 03:50 AM

I find that most people can't understand it. They all have no problem excepting vegans but I'm the weird one. So I guess I'm kinda perceived as a rebel..... but in a bad way. I'm kinda tired of people telling me gluten is not bad for you. A lot of them think if you just don't drink soda and work out all the time.... that's healthy. Or eat tons of soy.

1
D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930

(5242)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:02 AM

A little bit of both. The boring rebel perhaps. Or someone who has to take health serious because it's the field he's going into. I'm pretty good about coming to family events prepared and not making a big fuss about what I can and can not eat? "Want a beer?" "Nah. Do you have any wine?" rather than "Wish I could but I don't do gluten." They all know. I don't bring it up unless prodded directly. And when conversation dies, it always manages to come up. My mother has an autoimmune disease and I've begged her to take gluten out of her diet for just a month and see if things go better. Not happening yet.

Bad3a78e228c67a7513c28f17c36b3cf

(1387)

on March 17, 2011
at 11:00 AM

Keep working on her gently. I finally got my parents to do it a few months ago, and the results have been great!

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:14 PM

My mom is an "everything in moderation" person and doesn't see the benefit of completely cutting anything out.

D10ca8d11301c2f4993ac2279ce4b930

(5242)

on March 17, 2011
at 05:05 PM

moderation for some things means abstaining.

58cc17a77bca6e503dcf6bf6471b76a1

(478)

on March 17, 2011
at 04:38 PM

Same thing with my parents - they're "everything in moderation" philosophy..which I think not quite in moderation (cook in vegetable oil, eat gluten and grains daily)..hm....

1
7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

on March 17, 2011
at 02:27 AM

I am totally a NUTRITION GEEK to everyone in my life. My family always comes to me with weird questions, the girls at the gym ask me stuff after asking the trainer, just to check on him. Guys at work appear at my desk and ask me stuff about food.

Even if my ideas are rebellious, it's just seen as a manifestation of my complete and total nerdiness in regards to food and weight loss.

0
2f931662684a7747be36255c8b486228

(1049)

on March 22, 2011
at 01:46 PM

I do have a bit of OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) so I am seen as an obsessive bitch Natzi (the german blood) for sure. also as: paranoid..an exetremist. Even my dentist this morning insisted that Flouride (toxic?) is very good, a diet needs to contain a bit of everything and he has never heard of remineralization of teeth

But I still added before leaving: I believe otherwise

I don't think doctors of any type like to be contradicted by we non-doctors. (bitches or not)

0
F9a0b72f38860d7601afd5a45bb53394

(3618)

on March 17, 2011
at 02:08 AM

I'm not full-on paleo, more in a process of dietary evolution, as it were. And I think I would only get to the point of something like lacto-paleo. (Unless I turn out to have a milk protein allergy or just cannot lose all my excess weight with it in my diet, I am NOT giving up dairy.) But my family's not one that I can really talk with intelligently about this. There are all sorts of intelligence levels in the bunch but there's more than one way to be smart, you know? A while back I had to explain to my father, the former U.S. Navy senior chief petty officer, what kidneys do. Going into diet minutiae would go right over his head.

A shame, too. He could stand to benefit from it. Several of them could.

D30ff86ad2c1f3b43b99aed213bcf461

on March 17, 2011
at 02:16 AM

So...does that leave you a rebel or a square? ;)

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on March 17, 2011
at 03:11 PM

Dietary evolution: I love this!

-1
4e813fcf7266312684862b945c1c3281

(462)

on March 17, 2011
at 11:08 AM

Didn't think dairy or coffee were paleo.

9cfa1ab909f6f89544be665d4ef6e3ea

on March 17, 2011
at 12:08 PM

Oh, no! Burn the apostate!

24fcc21452ebe39c032be6801d6bbadd

(9812)

on March 17, 2011
at 08:15 PM

This might be better suited to the comment section under the original question. I have coffee with heavy cream too- it's a pretty popular combo for those of us who tolerate dairy, even if it isn't "paleo."

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