4

votes

Please hack my husband's compliance.

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 15, 2011 at 5:29 PM

I've been eating Paleo for a while now. My husband has not. He was raised in a low-fat household. My in-laws are absolutely ignorant of all science and follow the low-fat, low-sat fat, low cholesterol way of life. No one is really overweight or obese so clearly something is working for them.

I've started to introduce my husband to the Paleo way of eating. He has started to cut out sugar from his diet, which was a challenge since he had a massive sweet tooth. I've also got him eating higher fat and protein. We don't really have to lose any weight, although it is a welcome side-effect if it happens. The problem is that we are both at the office for close to 80 hours a week and sometimes it is just simpler for him to eat the food catered by the firm. Also, I am not sure that he totally buys into this way of eating yet, and so I suppose a sandwich just doesn't seem that bad to him.

I am concerned that if he is in fact having sandwiches or SAD food at the office coupled with higher fat, higher protein food at home, his daily intake would resemble the typical SAD diet of high fat, high carbs. Is my trying to get him to be Paleo therefore counterproductive?

Put in another way, should I be looking at this as "all or nothing, Paleo or bust" or a spectrum, whereby each non-SAD meal he has is a victory for his health?

454ac0b39b48ef805ec9ac88eaa7764c

on August 16, 2011
at 02:45 AM

I see that Everyday Paleo did a post along a similar vein with respect to transitioning kids to Paleo. http://everydaypaleo.com/2011/06/15/all-or-nothing/

454ac0b39b48ef805ec9ac88eaa7764c

on August 15, 2011
at 07:08 PM

This is a great answer, very nuanced.

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6 Answers

best answer

3
510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20898)

on August 15, 2011
at 06:35 PM

Some things are "all-or-nothing" and some things are "less is better than more" and yet others are "more is better than less".

For me, all-or-nothing really falls in the category of gut-irritants because anything that irritates your gut causes damage that can take weeks to fix. So a small exposure once in a while really becomes a chronic problem. To that end, I say grains and legumes are just off limits.

In the "less is better than more" category, I place sugar. Granted sugar is a real toxic substance and your body does what it can to get rid of it, and chronically elevated sugar levels are bad. BUT if you're insulin sensitive and can process the sugar, then your body is doing it's job (it may break down the road and not continue to do it's job) and it's probably best to cut back on the sugars, but a gradual ramp down will show some improvement. Here's where I agree with Sisson's 80/20 rule.

For the "more is better than less" category, I'd add saturated fat. If you can get some, great it's a good building block. The more you can get, the better, but if someone is a low-fat person, then their body will probably recycle what sat fat it can, so as long as some is coming in, it's not THAT bad (look at all the vegetarians who get nearly no sat fat, they're still OK - not great, but OK).

454ac0b39b48ef805ec9ac88eaa7764c

on August 15, 2011
at 07:08 PM

This is a great answer, very nuanced.

5
3432683fc74c2d2a40efe1e8f16ac1f6

(1130)

on August 15, 2011
at 07:09 PM

In my opinion, what one eats is a very personal matter, tightly connected with one's mental and emotional state. I am not sure if I would be happy if my wife would try to persuade me to eat certain way... it's like someone would want to force a religion to me.

I started to do paleo (about one month ago), and my wife not, but it just doesn't feel right to make her compliant or switch. I ask her to cook more meat now or not buy certain foods, but other than that, I leave it as it is. She already sees some benefits like losing weight and more energy, so maybe she will try paleo later on, but if not, that's also fine with me. As I see it, the motivation to change one's nourishment should be intrinsic, then it can work.

3
16e617676c5ac710e5235e0b773edc0b

on August 16, 2011
at 01:38 AM

I am concerned that if he is in fact having sandwiches or SAD food at the office coupled with higher fat, higher protein food at home, his daily intake would resemble the typical SAD diet of high fat, high carbs. Is my trying to get him to be Paleo therefore counterproductive?

It doesn't appear that any of the current answers have addressed this. I would be concerned about the mixing of the high fat at home with the high carb outside of the house for sure. That is a good recipe for weight gain.

In that respect I think you're right to think of it as all or nothing.

I could be wrong but I'm pretty sure that high fat and high carb is asking for trouble.

2
B14dc4aa1ddefbec3bc09550428ee493

on August 16, 2011
at 06:21 AM

To be honest, I think you are going to have to let go a little bit and realize that this is ultimately up to him. Do your best to educate him, but realize he has free will and this is not going to work unless he buys into it himself. You can't make him be healthy. I see so many well-meaning people trying to manage their families' diets, but when the people involved are adults there is only so much you can do. Any improvements made will help him though, I'm sure. You're just not going to get 100% unless that is what HE wants.

1
4bf5827bfb7df85c5b4b485db0945e64

(1386)

on August 15, 2011
at 05:39 PM

Yeah, I think the less grains and sugar he eats, overall, is a benefit. Instead of trying to convince him, just go strict Paleo yourself and, after he sees how awesome you are on this way of eating, he'll want to follow suit. It's always so hard trying to convince people and that's a sure way to get many people to resist.

Maybe you could make it fun and run a little experiment. Take some measurements/metrics (self-photos, blood values) at the beginning of 30 days and compare them to the end of 30 days.

0
A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on August 15, 2011
at 06:28 PM

Paleo ain't easy. It's tough to sell paleo to someone with no health or weight issues. But one meal at a time is a good approach, any reduction in gluten/fructose/n6 is bound to be healthier. Don't worry about the saturated fat - it's protective. The only worry would be adding fat without subtracting anything for a higher caloric load, but if he's cutting back on sugar, it should work out.

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