A rant on dieting

3 Nov

This Paleo diet – I’ve read enough critiques of it from “respected” doctors, nutritionists, and dietitians. Articles published in mainstream magazines like this and this that sure make it sounds like a crock to the average person. Dr. Oz even said it’s a fad. And if he says it, I guess that’s the truth.

It’s difficult for peeps to know what the heck to eat these days when there are diet after diet and expert after expert, all telling you to do or not do something different, and if you read enough, it’s almost all conflicting, on top of trying to figure out what kind of exercise is best. My favorite blogger described it all as “noise,” which is pretty accurate I think.

People ask me advice, they challenge me, they try to trip me up sometimes. I’m not an expert, but I am a researcher, as any smart person who is looking to get the best out of life should be. Don’t just take anyone’s word for it. Get as many angles as you can on a subject, and then start your own experimenting. Whether it’s diet or exercise. Do something, make a change, and then watch your results.

I’ve tried lots of diets and workouts. Currently CrossFit and Paleo or the best combination I’ve ever found and been able to stick with. And I have had the most positive results. In addition to the fat loss and increased overall feeling of health, energy, and well-being, I’ve had some surprising changes. I used to have frequent allergic reactions to many colors of eye shadow. I would suck it up and wear it for a night out, knowing that in the next 24 hours my eyelids would end up red, itchy, and flaky. not life-threatening, but annoying, nonetheless. Since switching to Paleo I have worn the same eye shadows that used to cause a reaction, multiple times and for multiple days in a row, and I’ve had no issues. Finally, I’ve had various types of chronic pain and inflammation in certain joints and tissues, that three weeks into eating Paleo went away and stayed away.

What I read of others who have made these changes – always positive, and the variety of health benefits experienced by others is amazing as well.

I eat a ton of bacon and red meat, which are dietary no-no’s according to the “experts” and I avoid whole grains and whole wheat, which are supposed to be the best thing since sliced bread (pun intended). I no longer get my calcium from lowfat milk since I don’t drink it. And on the rare occasion I might choose milk, I would select whole or heavy cream, just to get the most natural and fattening. The only thing the experts would agree with me on is the increased amount of veggies and fruit, and avoidance of refined sugars. We can all get behind that.

My blood pressure is great, my performance in the gym (sans carbs) is solid, I’m losing fat and gaining muscle, and I’ve truly never felt better. I also read that eating Paleo can help with disease prevention, such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer, Parkinson’s, and Alzeimer’s to name a few. I’m not sure the science on that – I’ve read some, but if there’s anything to it, those would be pretty sweet to actively avoid.

I’m not big on the “folklore” behind “Paleo” and that it’s what our ancestors/cavemen ate. Critics can stack up a lot of amusing arguments on that theory, and I don’t blame them. But I can’t find a place for cavemen in the history of man given by the Bible, and I do lean toward my faith and Creationism. However, the other side to that coin and the “idea” behind it (forget any science right now), is that God gave us plenty of food to eat in the form of plants and animals that need no further processing to nourish us fully. There is no place for the mass processing and the addition of man-made chemicals in God’s creation. He gave us what we need to live.

I don’t really know where I’m going with this or how to wrap it up. What I do know is health doesn’t have to be confusing. You research, experiment, draw conclusions for yourself, adjust, rinse and repeat, till you find how to be your best. There isn’t a magic pill or method, it will likely take hard work and discipline no matter what. And the simplest thing I’ve learned to know if you’re doing it right: if it makes you miserable and/or you aren’t getting the results you want, it’s not the right thing (or you’re just doin’ it wrong, haha). That is how I feel about low fat diets and riding an elliptical machine.

One Response to “A rant on dieting”

  1. Maria November 4, 2011 at 8:19 am #

    I agree whole heartedly with this post. I have a phrase I seem to use a lot lately. “To each is own” I am not a die hard Paleo, but I call it a non -processed diet. But I hate to even say that, because I am not dieting. I EAT ALL DAY LONG! And then some. I do have a few carbs, but minimal, almost cut by 3/4 from what I use to eat. I loved my chips and bread. LOL. Fact is if it’s processed and full of sugar, those are additives that a healthy body doesn’t need. I am a simple person. I can eat simple things and enjoy. That even entails some dairy from time to time. And the more fat the better!!! haha. Forget that skim milk in my coffee, I use half and half. Correct, I will never give up my coffee! I crave goodness now. Vegetables, fruit, and meat. I laugh because I craved a snack last night and went in and had a banana, and then a big hunk of left over pork loin at 9pm last night. More satisfying than, anything else. Also, you know my position! There is a purpose for the eliptical, to cover 400 meter sprints the best I can in a WOD without hurting my hip joint. :)

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