Whilst I was running through the benefits of the paleo diet with a prospective client and coming up with more and more positives to tell her I was reminded of the part in the Monty Python film Life of Brian where they ask 'So, what have the Romans ever done for us?'. Of course the reply comes 'well there was the aqueducts then the sewers, then the roads, sanitation, irrigation, education, public baths, peace, etc etc. The reason I'm bringing this up is because it is how the Paleo diet feels to me, there are just so many important benefits that have been life changing for me (maybe not quite as important as the ones the Romans brought to humanity!)
Firstly my long standing IBS symptoms have gone after about 20 years suffering from stomach pains, bloating, gas and all the other unpleasant symptoms of this really debilitating condition. I used to have a bloated stomach every evening and would go thorough phases where the pain was so bad I would need a hot water bottle on it. I can honestly say that since cutting out grains and sugar about 90% of the time I haven't had any IBS attacks and my stomach is pretty flat (for someone who has given birth to twins!).
I can eat a lot of food and still stay lean! I love my food and hate being hungry. If ever I was 'on a diet' in the past I always felt hungry about 2-3 hours after meals because I was following the low fat calorie counting type of diet. I now eat low carb, moderate protein and high fat and I can stay a very good weight, I don't get too hungry between meals and I really enjoy all my food.
My 'all or nothing' approach to dieting has been replaced by eating 80-90% paleo throughout the year and then eating other foods I enjoy such as crisps, paleo cake, dark chocolate, red wine, crackers and cheese the other 10% of the time. I used to eat very sensibly for a few months never deviating, but then I would eat pretty badly for another three months. I now believe that my body was rebelling and trying to regain lost weight to make up for deficiencies in nutrients. I find it easy to get right back on track now after my 'cheat's'.
My cellulite has disappeared! Although I have always been fairly slim I always had unsightly cellulite in my thighs. My thighs are now the best they have been for years and I feel so much happier showing them in public.
I have energy and enthusiasm for life most of the time and I don't get mood swings. Previously I did have times when I felt low but I can honestly say that I generally feel 'up' and I am sure that is to do with feeding my brain with good fats and eating in a way that balances my hormones.
I have learnt to listen to my body and most of the time give it what it needs. If I'm hungry I give it food, if I'm not hungry I wait until I am. Years of having an unhealthy relationship with food meant that I would always eat at mealtimes or when there was food around regardless of whether I really needed it or not.
So when anyone asks what a paleo style diet means to me you can understand why it's quite hard to shut me up! I started EatRealFoodUK so I can pass on all these positive benefits to as many people as possible. If you would like help and support in the transition to paleo style eating to help you to lose weight and gain better health contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org.