2

votes

How did you stop old habits creeping back in?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 05, 2011 at 3:10 PM

Hi all,

So far my wife and I love the Paleo lifestyle. We are only about two months in and not totally strict with it (yet) but it's really made a difference to our lives in so many ways.

Amongst others, the positive effects so far:

  • Losing a few inches around tummy, hips, legs etc
  • Steady and controlled weight loss
  • Muscle tone is getting better
  • Feel happier
  • Energy lasts all day and doesn't just peak after meals
  • Food is exciting again

Despite this though old habits are starting to creep back in. I guess it's human nature to think "I'm doing ok, one oat biscuit won't hurt". But I'm finding that one occasional biscuit is turning into one a day.

We also know that it's OK to occasionally have high cocoa content chocolate and the occasional glass of wine. Again that 'treat' has turned into a regular occurance.

I know reading back my list of positives is a great incentive but I still find old habits creeping in, especially when our whole society is so 'processed' foods driven.

Any hints tips, previous stories and best practice ideas.

I feel like we're on the verge of really cracking the re-learning of 'bad education' from the past 34 yerars, but would love any ideas on how we can flush out the last remaining addictions to the processed food lifestyle.

Thanks,

Paul.

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

One of the things we rely on most is the horrible feeling afterwards that we get when we eat processed foods. It's a good reminder at the moment of how brilliant the Paleo way of eating is making us feel. Thanks.

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 06, 2011
at 12:51 PM

Thanks Kelly, You are right these things take time, our body is slowly getting rid of 30 odd years of 'poison' and so it will wonder what is happening - I think the idea of alterntives to help 'wean' us off the old way of eating might be the way forward. Thanks again.

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 06, 2011
at 12:48 PM

It sounds like you are in a really good place, thank you for sharing it with us. I have not noticed any reactions as extreme as yours but you are right there are certain 'tells' after you've eaten processed foods. We are certainly not Cordain Paleo yet, and may never be, but it's good to know that we are getting rid of the worst side of food already. I am lucky to have someone for support, we learnt about Paleo while on our honeymoon and it intrigued us both at the same time.

Fe535c4994ac6176f76e1ff6d29eb08a

(4286)

on July 05, 2011
at 06:39 PM

Well said Mike! Definitely how I go about it as well. As I wrote in the Atkins thread last week. Diet has two meanings, one is a weight loss program, the other is what you eat to survive on. Atkins is a weight loss program. Just remember that the food you eat is what is sustaining you. That thought always keeps away from the bad stuff.

1568416ef28477d1fa29046218d83ddd

(6235)

on July 05, 2011
at 03:38 PM

The big reason this works for me is I shop Sunday so I keep in mind I have to have something good for breakfast and then just pick up enough for thee week and do the same for lunch and a dinner. Then I go home and fix lunch and often end up making enough for most of the week. It has the side effect of making it easier for me to be good for the rest of the week :)

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 05, 2011
at 03:31 PM

Thanks Mindi. I have noticed I can go longer without eating before I feel really hungry so perhaps using the 'no' to a 'treat' as an option to fast is a good idea.

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 05, 2011
at 03:27 PM

Not a bad idea... kind of like a detox after the weekend perhaps? And those 'reset' days can then be increased over time instead of going cold turkey. An interesting option. Thanks.

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 05, 2011
at 03:24 PM

Thanks Mike, Some sound advice, especially about seriously considering what you put in you put in your mouth and consider as food. We don't buy any grain related products anymore, mostly the temptations are at work and when we are out, but like you say I guess it's about considering whether I want that 'poison' in my body. Thanks again.

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6 Answers

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5
345c1755efe005edd162b770dc6fb821

(8767)

on July 05, 2011
at 03:45 PM

This can be a tough one because its nice to 'treat' yourself once in a while, but if you aren't able to spread those treats out or find an alternate replacement, it will once again become a part of your diet and old habits take over.

My suggestion is to get rid of the temptations completely from the house while you aren't tempted, sounds like at this moment you realize that these things are creeping back into your diet and you know they aren't the best things for you.

Find a replacement foods for these treats so you don't go down that exact path again. Be strict with yourself for a period of 5-6 days and then allow yourself one treat....but make it a coconut flour/almond flour biscuit instead. Find an alternative way to reinvent your old vices, convince yourself that you can have the alternative version instead and be happy with that! Find what works for you!

Its not exactly paleo but I find if I make an alternate I don't feel like I'm missing out on something I'm craving. AND after several months you will probably loose the desire for that biscuit and even the alternative option. Then you'll also see you can be stricter and have more control.

These things take time, the toxins and by products stay in your body for a while and take time to detox completely. Until then you'll be both mentally and physically craving things. Remember, glutens take a good 15 days to get out of your system completely. So until you get a little stricter with your diet you will not be off the effects of them, hence the cravings or desire for them.

If you don't have the will power to go cold turkey, take some time and remove one thing at a time, every 2 wks. It will take time but eventually you'll feel better!!

good luck!!

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 06, 2011
at 12:51 PM

Thanks Kelly, You are right these things take time, our body is slowly getting rid of 30 odd years of 'poison' and so it will wonder what is happening - I think the idea of alterntives to help 'wean' us off the old way of eating might be the way forward. Thanks again.

4
510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20888)

on July 05, 2011
at 03:18 PM

I just viewed this as a complete lifestyle change. There are now foods that are considered poison (e.g., your biscuits). I don't consider it food, and don't ever think about putting it in my mouth. I know it sounds harsh and like I'm a grumpy spoil sport, but if you buy into the paleo way of life, you understand that things like grains are just terrible for you and there's no good reason to eat them. Now things like wine that are in the grey area, I don't know. Maybe just make some rules, like "I can only drink n glasses of wine a week", and keep track. Then you can party if friends come over and use up all of your glasses in one night, or you can spread it out.

I wrote this in the "cheat meal" article last week: Don't think of this as cheating or "not being paleo", you have to decide for yourself every time you put something in your mouth is it going to do more good for you than bad. Allowing yourself to "cheat" is just a bad idea. Would you "cheat" with arsenic?

The best thing is really to just throw all of the bad stuff out. Don't have anything in the house that's bad for you. Then when you're out, make conscious decisions to only eat good stuff. Pretty soon anything that's not food will actually disgust you and you won't even want to eat it. At least that's how it worked for me.

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 05, 2011
at 03:24 PM

Thanks Mike, Some sound advice, especially about seriously considering what you put in you put in your mouth and consider as food. We don't buy any grain related products anymore, mostly the temptations are at work and when we are out, but like you say I guess it's about considering whether I want that 'poison' in my body. Thanks again.

Fe535c4994ac6176f76e1ff6d29eb08a

(4286)

on July 05, 2011
at 06:39 PM

Well said Mike! Definitely how I go about it as well. As I wrote in the Atkins thread last week. Diet has two meanings, one is a weight loss program, the other is what you eat to survive on. Atkins is a weight loss program. Just remember that the food you eat is what is sustaining you. That thought always keeps away from the bad stuff.

2
Aeec781cc234fcae119d4a71532058f5

(2047)

on July 05, 2011
at 03:28 PM

I've learned that for me, there's no such thing as "just one" and that "moderation" is a meaningless word. So-called diet experts say to allow yourself treats, because if you restrict too much, you'll end up binging. I don't find this to be the case, because allowing myself treats leads to binging on them almost every time.

What I love about Paleo is that it's a lifestyle and a mindset change that has given me a lot of freedom. I simply don't eat the things that are on the list of things I don't eat. I love the things that I do eat.

Practicing intermittent fasting is helpful for me. If I'm in a situation where there's nothing available that I want to eat, my body can handle going a little longer without eating, whereas before, the impending blood sugar crash would've led me to load up on crap.

This is a learning process that I haven't completely mastered, but I feel much better with the progress I've made so far. Stick with it and good luck! You are both lucky to have each other for support!

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 05, 2011
at 03:31 PM

Thanks Mindi. I have noticed I can go longer without eating before I feel really hungry so perhaps using the 'no' to a 'treat' as an option to fast is a good idea.

1
8d454fc50d6d58643d6f8b0d1e7ea8ea

on July 06, 2011
at 01:29 AM

It might be useful to remember that many of our prime "cheat" candidates (grain, sugar) have highly addictive properties and that once reintroduced to one's system start a whole ugly process of fighting urges again. For example, I had a little taste of some chocolate goat's milk ice cream I made for my husband this afternoon, and all night I've been fantasizing about cereal, cookies, more sugar!! When I can remember the after effects it's easier for me to resist temptation. I also rely on a sort of mental process of knowing that, if I indulge in something bad, within about 10 minutes it will just be a memory - so if I can drum up the memory of, say, a jelly donut, I figure that's as good as having eaten one ten minutes ago (but without the sugar rush/crash, tummy ache, and subsequent carb addict battle).

Also, when I'm eating real clean, those little "legal" treats (raspberries, roasted almonds, coconut) taste sooooooo much better.

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on September 07, 2013
at 01:28 AM

One of the things we rely on most is the horrible feeling afterwards that we get when we eat processed foods. It's a good reminder at the moment of how brilliant the Paleo way of eating is making us feel. Thanks.

1
1568416ef28477d1fa29046218d83ddd

(6235)

on July 05, 2011
at 03:20 PM

So far what has helped me is a reset day. I plan on eating really well every monday or tuesday (if i have a monday social obligation) and that seems to keep me from slipping too far.

1568416ef28477d1fa29046218d83ddd

(6235)

on July 05, 2011
at 03:38 PM

The big reason this works for me is I shop Sunday so I keep in mind I have to have something good for breakfast and then just pick up enough for thee week and do the same for lunch and a dinner. Then I go home and fix lunch and often end up making enough for most of the week. It has the side effect of making it easier for me to be good for the rest of the week :)

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 05, 2011
at 03:27 PM

Not a bad idea... kind of like a detox after the weekend perhaps? And those 'reset' days can then be increased over time instead of going cold turkey. An interesting option. Thanks.

0
3dc940ac9be21e45cf83207814c8cd46

(544)

on July 05, 2011
at 04:28 PM

For me, six weeks today, I find the same as Mindi. I had one glass of wine at a wedding 2 weeks ago and within 1/2 hour I had a throbbing in my left knee, something I had not had in a month. On the weekend, it was hot and I was really thirsty for a really cold drink so had a beer. Two things happened, the first that I needed a snooze shortly after and the second, that during the night I developed a bad headache. Coincidences? Perhaps...but not to me. These things don't mean enough to me to repeat, to test them.

I have had no cravings in these 6 weeks, even when my non-paleo husband wants creamy ice-cream and pines for it.

This is all new to me, of course, but I feel as if I finally am where I should be, away from all grains, sugar, legumes, starchy foods, and dairy. I spent 5 weeks without added salt and for a few days have used a tiny sprinkle and found it helps, especially in the heat. I tried greek yogurt last week and got such abdominal discomfort, I do not want to do that again. So it is strict Loren Cordain paleo for me, and happily so.

I wish I had the husband on paleo with me...

51c2cdd55bf287026db68cf31a6d0a0b

on July 06, 2011
at 12:48 PM

It sounds like you are in a really good place, thank you for sharing it with us. I have not noticed any reactions as extreme as yours but you are right there are certain 'tells' after you've eaten processed foods. We are certainly not Cordain Paleo yet, and may never be, but it's good to know that we are getting rid of the worst side of food already. I am lucky to have someone for support, we learnt about Paleo while on our honeymoon and it intrigued us both at the same time.

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