7

votes

Can't toot the paleo horn. Am I alone?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created October 08, 2012 at 9:24 PM

I finally came to paleo (after following a whole foods/weston a. price style diet for years) four months ago.

My hubby loves me and accepts my dietary choices, he surprised me with 60 farm fresh eggs last week :P, and follows a paleo diet while in the household - although indulges in non-paleo foods when we are out or if he is with friends.

Four months into this journey I am feeling wonderful, my body is loving it and I cannot speak more highly about the benefits of following a paleo diet. Except... I can't. I can't seem to discuss "being paleo" with anyone except my hubby. We eat out with friends and I "paleo-ify" meals without explaining. Eating meals at family members house and skipping the carbs and sugars and simply saying "no thank you" and then not going into it.

I suppose not tooting the paleo horn isn't necessarily a bad thing, however, so many of the people in my life could benefit greatly from the dietary knowledge I have. From type 2 diabetes, obesity, general unhappiness, IBS, etc. my friends and family are suffering, and yet I can't seem to share the joy of the paleo lifestyle. Diet and fitness topics are so hot right now, touchy subjects that everyone seems to want to chat about and get defensive towards new ideas.

Am I alone in not wanting to preach diet and lifestyle changes? Is anyone else out there embarassed when attention is drawn to the way they eat?

B3222ea49a60d1d12a9d25f194c0f873

(225)

on October 11, 2012
at 04:49 PM

For what it's worth, NewEra, I have done that. :) It's not pleasant to be sure in the short-term but the fact is misery loves company and they want to have other people to complain to without being held accountable. I'm not saying to give that response to family, but co-workers and really good friends (the kind who actually rely on you to slap them around when deserved) I say go for it. All this coddling isn't helping so maybe some 'truthiness' will?!

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on October 11, 2012
at 02:18 PM

On Robb Wolf's podcast, he once mentioned he had an ex-crack addict as a client, she said it was easier to quit crack, than it was to quit sugar. Experiments on mice with cocaine and sugar showed the same effect.

8634d4988ced45a68e2a79e69cc01835

(1617)

on October 09, 2012
at 08:15 PM

I hate seeing that so much that I'm tired of it. People eating garbage, putting on weight, feeling terrible, and "oh I just can't live without ____". It hurts to see people you care about hurting themselves over and again, but doing the same damn things daily. Then they whine about their condition. It's cruel, but I want to tell them to either change or shut up!

B885dc10c6263f5a4492205d50560bee

(401)

on October 09, 2012
at 08:06 PM

One of my close friends is very overweight and has a slew of health problems she wants to take care of (including a 2-year headache), and she she also "just can't give up bread" and eats pasta for lunch every day because it's so convenient. She's very educated on the whole organic thing and knows she wants to eat better, but for over two years hasn't been able to "start" for one reason or another. It's so frustrating for me to watch her gain more and more weight and hear her wistfully sigh about a time when she'll exercise and be happy again, then see her do... Nothing about it. It saddens me.

76026e8ef496039d5075440ff731aa0d

(5386)

on October 09, 2012
at 12:14 AM

Fighting the "well it's easy for you cause you're already thin and have never really struggled" crowd is the classic unstoppable force meeting the immovable object...finding common ground, no matter how small the square footage could really help here...unless someone has that light bulb moment and is finally tired of being sick, and tired… ---rock --- Sarah-Mae ---hard place--- Best of luck in whatever and however you decide you want to help, keep us posted! Truth.

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:55 PM

Amen. You're balanced girl!!!

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:51 PM

Unfortunately not at this moment. Even hubby complains about wanting to lose the last 10lbs but does not commit to ditching the grains and sugars outside the house. Luckily we do eat at home 80% of the time, but he loves his microwave pizzas, instant oats, and burgers and beers with the guys. He is learning, slowly but surely, and interested, but not yet ready to commit. Perhaps part of my issue, as a runner, I have always been slim and have not had any micarculous changes occur with my outward appearance that would spur others to be inspired. I've always been perceived as "naturally slim".

76026e8ef496039d5075440ff731aa0d

(5386)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:06 PM

Hmmm..so it sounds like you'd be dealing with a lot of the "oh I could never not eat [fill in the blank]" Is there one person in particular that you think is ready to give even the whole 30 an honest try?

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:02 PM

As one of the lucky few without any gluten or dairy intolerances, I am getting really sick of pretending I'm celiac or lactose intolerant!

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:00 PM

As for your comment: "but when one of my friends who is rotund to say the least looks at me, shakes their head and tells me all of the problems I’m going to encounter from eating what I’m eating" If I had a dollar for everytime a "rotund" friend tells me that I am "too skinny" or not looking out for my own well-being... ohhhhhh the paleo bacon I would eat.

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:59 PM

:) This was excellent! I agree completely. What I meant My by insinuating I have so much knowledge to help the masses (HA!), is actually that I would love be able to educate my extended family to take steps away from the dessert-every-meal, protein-shake meal replacement, stationary, gastric bypass, insulin-dependant lifestyles they are currently leading and clean up their acts a little bit. By no means am I a doctor or a certified nutritionist, but the nutritional education that I do have and my fitness background could be put to better use. Sigh.

2a2da4d6df354c8473706281d61d1850

(430)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:53 PM

A little further digging and my search on Meetup.com around Victoria did find a Weston A Price meetup group: http://www.meetup.com/Point-Roberts-Chapter-The-Weston-A-Price-Foundation/ Also a gluten free group: http://www.meetup.com/Gluten-Free-Foodies/ These are not exactly the same, but close.

Ae8946707ddebf0f0bfbcfc63276d823

(9402)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:31 PM

http://paleohacks.com/questions/115102/the-first-rule-of-paleo-is-you-do-not-talk-about-paleo

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17 Answers

7
D41bd7b3d3b962eb0146f471eb632f56

on October 08, 2012
at 11:05 PM

Oh, definitely. My issue is that I'm surrounded by people who are some variant of vegetarian. And none of them deal with my personal health issues (PCOS, gluten intolerance, formerly overweight. A whole food approach to Weight Watchers took care of my extra weight, but primal/WAPF is taking care of my PCOS). They're all already slim and they have no problem with or interest in fertility. For me, my fertility IS my health. It's a totally different perspective.

I don't do much horn tooting for several reasons. The first being that I'm not going to convert ANYONE who doesn't have an open mind to it. I'd heard about paleo for three years before I actually opened my mind enough to start researching ancestral health. My mind became open as I began to doubt that saturated fat was so bad since it's found in real food, in addition to being diagnosed with gluten intolerance and PCOS, and finding that a gluten free, higher protein + fat, lower carb diet was regulating my cycles for the first time in my life. But if anyone tried to convince me of any of this while I was successfully losing weight while eating low-fat and 50-60% carbs on Weight Watchers, I would have brushed them off immediately.

Second reason being that I don't have a lot of visible proof to show for it. Like I said, I lost my weight on Weight Watchers. I stopped losing when my body reached a healthy weight, which for me is related to my set point (I was a chubby kid. 150 lbs all through my teens, and while I'm 150 lbs now, I'm a little taller and have a much lower body fat percentage). I'm not skinny. I don't have a fitness model body. I've got a large, dense frame. My lean body mass alone weighs more than many of the girls I know. And my body fat is spread out in a pretty even layer over my muscles. I'm the closest to healthy I've ever been, but I know this because of my moods, my cycles, and my skin. But if people are judging health by body composition, I am not the prime ideal they are looking for. And I don't want to have to explain to everyone why body fat is important to women and for me to lose 10 lbs means I'd have to cut off part of a limb or lose my cycle (and still not look like a fitness model). I'd rather quietly eat my beef heart chili and move on.

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:55 PM

Amen. You're balanced girl!!!

7
76026e8ef496039d5075440ff731aa0d

on October 08, 2012
at 10:39 PM

You have to understand that you're speaking a different language at this point that I highly doubt they will understand: n1 to n6 ratios...intermittent fasting...grass fed...organic...paleolithic...Neolithic...WAP and many other acronyms and Buzz words that even NOW, I still have to look up to really understand what some people on this site are talking about.

??????so many of the people in my life could benefit greatly from the dietary knowledge I have.???

This part worries me...you???ve been doing Paleo for a couple months and WAP for years???this site is all about suggestions and layman???s and fact???pinions (though some are doctors or in health fields)???does that mean you have the knowledge to help MANY people eat according to what is right for them?

Because everyone is different, I fear you???d give them a way of eating that is like your own, and I assume that it took you a while to find what works best for you?

Please don???t take what I???m saying as condescending or trying to shoot down your efforts, I assume MANY of us here have candidates of our own whom we want to help immediately, it???s just, I recently had someone say to me that they wanted to ???pick my brain???, and it jarred me???I???m not a doctor, yes I have a lot of info about a Paleo way of eating, yes I know what works for me, but I had to literally make them repeat ???I am NOT a doctor...this is a ???hobby???, but one that seems to work for ME???now if you want more info read these books and visit these sites. (I do this also to gauge commitment. I like to explain things, but I don???t want to do all your leg work for you)

My girlfriend is a certified sugar junkie...I???m with her all the time, she sees how I eat, knows why I eat it, she???s also gluten intolerant and for the life of me, I can???t help her kick the sugar, I???ve tried, but I wonder if you???re ready for not being to help everyone, even though you???re doing everything ???right???. Might it be easier to help one person, someone who seems the most receptive to the information you???ve given them, and see just how far you can take that one person, letting not only your own results speak for themselves, but now someone else who can blow that Paleo horn and leave you not spread so thin?

???Is anyone else out there embarrassed when attention is drawn to the way they eat? ???

I don???t find many things in life that are truly scary or make me recoil in horror, but when one of my friends who is rotund to say the least looks at me, shakes their head and tells me all of the problems I???m going to encounter from eating what I???m eating, even though they tell me that they could stand to lose a couple pounds, they???re still compelled to tell me how they ???fear for my life??????I mean think about that, the walking dead are concerned for my health???I mean...they don???t write comedy that rich and indulgent these days, it???s so good it???s just got to be fattening!

Truth.

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:00 PM

As for your comment: "but when one of my friends who is rotund to say the least looks at me, shakes their head and tells me all of the problems I’m going to encounter from eating what I’m eating" If I had a dollar for everytime a "rotund" friend tells me that I am "too skinny" or not looking out for my own well-being... ohhhhhh the paleo bacon I would eat.

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:51 PM

Unfortunately not at this moment. Even hubby complains about wanting to lose the last 10lbs but does not commit to ditching the grains and sugars outside the house. Luckily we do eat at home 80% of the time, but he loves his microwave pizzas, instant oats, and burgers and beers with the guys. He is learning, slowly but surely, and interested, but not yet ready to commit. Perhaps part of my issue, as a runner, I have always been slim and have not had any micarculous changes occur with my outward appearance that would spur others to be inspired. I've always been perceived as "naturally slim".

76026e8ef496039d5075440ff731aa0d

(5386)

on October 09, 2012
at 12:14 AM

Fighting the "well it's easy for you cause you're already thin and have never really struggled" crowd is the classic unstoppable force meeting the immovable object...finding common ground, no matter how small the square footage could really help here...unless someone has that light bulb moment and is finally tired of being sick, and tired… ---rock --- Sarah-Mae ---hard place--- Best of luck in whatever and however you decide you want to help, keep us posted! Truth.

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:59 PM

:) This was excellent! I agree completely. What I meant My by insinuating I have so much knowledge to help the masses (HA!), is actually that I would love be able to educate my extended family to take steps away from the dessert-every-meal, protein-shake meal replacement, stationary, gastric bypass, insulin-dependant lifestyles they are currently leading and clean up their acts a little bit. By no means am I a doctor or a certified nutritionist, but the nutritional education that I do have and my fitness background could be put to better use. Sigh.

76026e8ef496039d5075440ff731aa0d

(5386)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:06 PM

Hmmm..so it sounds like you'd be dealing with a lot of the "oh I could never not eat [fill in the blank]" Is there one person in particular that you think is ready to give even the whole 30 an honest try?

96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on October 11, 2012
at 02:18 PM

On Robb Wolf's podcast, he once mentioned he had an ex-crack addict as a client, she said it was easier to quit crack, than it was to quit sugar. Experiments on mice with cocaine and sugar showed the same effect.

4
2a2da4d6df354c8473706281d61d1850

(430)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:32 PM

No need to toot. Your example shall go along way. My husband laughed at me for the first 9 months I went paleo. But after he saw the dramatic changes in my health and appearance, he came on board and is a bigger enthusiast than I ever was...lol.

Other family members may not jump on your bandwagon but if you stick with it they may notice the changes in you, too. Who knows, they may even become very interested in your diet choices. That's really all you can expect.

May I suggest you find other paleos in your area. I speak from experience when I say the support of others is so comforting. Check forums like Marks Daily Apple or Robb Wolf. Many cities have meetup groups organized on Meetup.com. I checked Victoria BC and unfortunately there isn't one yet. But YOU could start one...I started the one in St. Louis a year and a half ago and it now has 320 members. The community is empowering, resourceful, and just plain good for the soul.

Good luck and be proud!

2a2da4d6df354c8473706281d61d1850

(430)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:53 PM

A little further digging and my search on Meetup.com around Victoria did find a Weston A Price meetup group: http://www.meetup.com/Point-Roberts-Chapter-The-Weston-A-Price-Foundation/ Also a gluten free group: http://www.meetup.com/Gluten-Free-Foodies/ These are not exactly the same, but close.

4
Ce57a94251224f9696faf47f9ca630a0

(858)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:32 PM

Yeah, I gave up about six months in, even though so many people complimented me on how I looked and acted. As soon as I started to tell people what I had done (after they asked, mind you), their eyes glazed over and I knew I'd lost them.

Some people got downright hostile and fight-y! Now I just shrug, tell them I am gluten intolerant (that's not how I came to Paleo, but my system certainly rejects it these days) and tuck into my big-ass pile of BACON.

C0d63e15a4e21b29c49d0380d87894b3

(303)

on October 08, 2012
at 11:02 PM

As one of the lucky few without any gluten or dairy intolerances, I am getting really sick of pretending I'm celiac or lactose intolerant!

3
3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on October 09, 2012
at 12:56 AM

I think people would look at me like I have an extra hole in my head if I discussed my way of eating as the "paleo diet". It's just not on most people's radar. When people ask how I've lost weight, my usual answer is that I've cut out grains and sugar. I only gave a more detailed explanation to a co-worker who kept asking questions (she cut out grains and her arthritic symptoms disappeared). Usually the "cut out grains and sugar" satisfies most people. And I don't have to argue with them about the safety of eating "all that fat and cholesterol" over "healthy whole grains". It's not that I'm not proud of paleo or not on board about it. It's that so few people have any inkling what it's all about and I don't want to have to argue.

The one exception is my family. My SIL asked me "what statin are you on" as if everyone our age is on statins. She was shocked when I told her that not only wasn't I on a statin, but I ate tons of fat and eggs every day and have great cholesterol numbers and that I didn't believe statins were appropriate treatment for women. And her 26 year old daughter--my niece--has been diagnosed with a seizure disorder (absence seizures, not grand mals), chronic severe migraines, and fibromyalgia. My niece's doctors keep telling her to avoid all meat, and eat lots of "healthy" carbs--she eats junk food and sugar all day long. It's killing me to know that her diet is probably the reason for many of her symptoms--she's suffering needlessly--and I haven't always been great at keeping my mouth shut about that.

2
02de5bc376540481b0bac8d47c650830

(40)

on October 09, 2012
at 10:40 AM

I never bring it up, but it someone asks I tell them about the book "Why We Get Fat" by Gary Taubes, which is how I got into the whole paleo thing in the first place. I've actually had a few people follow through and read it and......convert. (My Grandparents are reading it now, and I'm so excited.)

I pitch the book as a book about metabolism, not a how to diet book. People are okay with it if they think it's an accessible scientific work. Which it is. Instead of explaining why I eat this way, I just point people in the direction of the research.

If I'm talking to a close minded person though I usually just tell them I have blood sugar issues. (Which are now gone, thanks to paleo!)

2
1133603ea602c6824da56e8b596c9754

on October 08, 2012
at 10:29 PM

I do my best not to draw attention to myself, but people still notice and I hate having to explain what I am doing. Paleo is becoming the latest trend and I think that makes people take it less seriously.

1
96440612cf0fcf366bf5ad8f776fca84

(19463)

on October 11, 2012
at 02:19 PM

With people that asked because they saw the huge fat loss early on, I tell them what is and what I do. The rest, to make life easy, I just say I have allergies to wheat and dairy, and that's the end of it.

I think I've managed to convert two people to Paleo. Sadly, the wife wasn't one of them, and worse yet, she feeds SAD crap to our kids, and they eat it. This is the most painful parts. Even "You love these kids and want them to be healthy, why would you feed them toxic food?" her answer "We're hungry, we want to eat." This is when we have a fridge full of food, and a freezer full of good, healthy clean foods.

The kids have already picked up that I know stuff about health and come to me to ask for advice when something hurts. But the cognitive dissonance between what mommy feeds them and what she eats doesn't yet sink in - it's more the temptation of the quick, fast, taste good vs the long term view.

She'll come to me with crap she saw on nytimes about how organic food is too expensive vs conventional food and I pointed out the big difference: pesticides and GMO, esp. the recent French GMO cancer study. I'm not sure it sinks in, but hopefully it will before its too late.

She also runs for an hour each day, so tons of chronic cardio, mostly fueled by endorphins, shuns meat, and even embraced Born to Run. Not sure it made a difference but I showed her tons of articles about marathoner's death (mostly through Art De Vany's site), and most recently the article about Born To Run's main subject Micah True. I think that part is starting to get through to her somewhat. But she's switched it to bicyling now and even had the kids rid with her for many miles to the point where they couldn't go on anymore...

Recently she had an attack of acne. I told her it was likely from milk, or stress, or environmental toxins and to switch from milk to coconut milk. She did, mostly - except at work where they have CAFO milk, and I pointed this out to her. Perhaps it will start to sink in when she sees results.

It's very difficult to get through to some people. Stubbornness and irrationality are an unfortunate part of the human condition. Your instincts to keep what you do private are probably spot on, but only with some. There's lots of open minded folks out there.

1
3dc940ac9be21e45cf83207814c8cd46

(544)

on October 10, 2012
at 04:47 PM

I appreciate people's comments. For me, perhaps because I am 'vantaged-aged' (i.e. 61) I find people do listen because they see that I have no more inflammation (OA for some years)or GERD and energy to do stuff I enjoy, such as carpentry (using tools, lifting, up and down ladders, etc.) while some have had hips and knees replaced (OOOWWW!) and cannot do what they did as youth. I do the same as I have always done, although I sleep more and don't use alcohol anymore (inflammation-causing too). A friend with both hips replaced and who can barely walk because now her knees are giving up, went off wheat for a brief time and noticed great relief, but is still suffering. I suggested that wine (she drinks wine very day) might be also a problem (it is for me and I used to enjoy a glass or two once in a while, but no more). She drew the line at the wine, could not do without, uses canes and will be in a wheelchair in not too long.

I totally get how it is when someone says "I like ___too much!" usually 'bread'. I tell them that I LOVED bread and it really was an addiction for me. BUT, 2 days after my last piece of bread (May, 2011) I had NO more inflammation or GERD, and not long after I saw my waist for the first time in a long time.

1
2220edb35752c24f18e8efefa123c4ed

on October 09, 2012
at 07:40 PM

I used to try and tell people why I felt so good, and how I lost so much weight. At one time the VA had me on five or six pills a day. By chance, I found The Primal Blueprint and changed my life.

People generally didn't want to hear it. If they do listen, they simply don't believe you. It's sad actually. You know they are eating a SAD and taking way too many pills, and the best thing to do is just let them figure it out on their own...

1
Medium avatar

(10611)

on October 09, 2012
at 07:08 PM

Why preach at all? I go on and on about the benefits of hunt-and-gather behavior but I don't see people out on the sidewalks. The benefit is personal and if someone observes and emulates the better for them. Better to be a living example. Way too many armchair experts.

0
Ed6dc87a0d201bfc23e36b2cd2e37704

on October 11, 2012
at 04:15 PM

My advice is this: If people want help, they will seek help (take yourself as an example - you came across the paleo diet/lifestyle because you sought out healthier choices). Make improvements in your own life, and those around you who are witness to this ask you about it if they want your advice. Otherwise, you'll end up giving advice to a lot of people who don't want it, which will at best be annoying to them and at worst get you in arguments in which everyone loses.

0
7c9f81d68c78de1a31eab9c91c17b4b8

on October 11, 2012
at 03:46 PM

I really don't like the "evangelical" approach to paleo. I HATE it when people preach crap to me and I don't do it to others. I talk about my experience because I like to talk about things I'm excited about. I think it generally leaves people thinking I'm odd. Maybe some of them will try something I do but I think it's more probable they will find it on their own if they're seeking it.

0
B6721db1255c79e518364439a57241a8

on October 08, 2012
at 10:29 PM

At work everyone was excited when I started but no one wants to try even though they see the positive effects that I am experiencing... I don't even talk to anyone but my husband about it..

0
F9638b939a6f85d67f60065677193cad

(4266)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:28 PM

I am the same as you. I don't want to say anything. The few times I have shared, people have totally devalued my experience and said things that made me feel defensive and terrible. So I keep it to myself, even with people who seem interested or who could benefit.

0
B3173217a49b5b0116078775a17eb21d

(11488)

on October 08, 2012
at 10:10 PM

I've tried many times. But unfortunately I'm not double jointed...

0
7e36094a0f7a2fbad24290225405220b

(2064)

on October 08, 2012
at 09:29 PM

I tried to tell people but found that most of them don't want to know. They feel they can't live without bread and cake however much it might help them. It is so frustrating! I have friends with terrible arthritis and I tell them how mine has gone with paleo but NO-ONE has even tried it. They think I am 'ill' because I am gluten intolerant and it can't possibly apply to them. I don't even try any more!

B885dc10c6263f5a4492205d50560bee

(401)

on October 09, 2012
at 08:06 PM

One of my close friends is very overweight and has a slew of health problems she wants to take care of (including a 2-year headache), and she she also "just can't give up bread" and eats pasta for lunch every day because it's so convenient. She's very educated on the whole organic thing and knows she wants to eat better, but for over two years hasn't been able to "start" for one reason or another. It's so frustrating for me to watch her gain more and more weight and hear her wistfully sigh about a time when she'll exercise and be happy again, then see her do... Nothing about it. It saddens me.

8634d4988ced45a68e2a79e69cc01835

(1617)

on October 09, 2012
at 08:15 PM

I hate seeing that so much that I'm tired of it. People eating garbage, putting on weight, feeling terrible, and "oh I just can't live without ____". It hurts to see people you care about hurting themselves over and again, but doing the same damn things daily. Then they whine about their condition. It's cruel, but I want to tell them to either change or shut up!

B3222ea49a60d1d12a9d25f194c0f873

(225)

on October 11, 2012
at 04:49 PM

For what it's worth, NewEra, I have done that. :) It's not pleasant to be sure in the short-term but the fact is misery loves company and they want to have other people to complain to without being held accountable. I'm not saying to give that response to family, but co-workers and really good friends (the kind who actually rely on you to slap them around when deserved) I say go for it. All this coddling isn't helping so maybe some 'truthiness' will?!

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