Well, the answer is: There is no EXACT definition of paleo. But, I want to share the general consensus with you all since not everyone know anything beyond “it’s eating like a caveman”. I like pictures, and I assume you do too (because really, who doesn’t?) So, enjoy! *Important note: For paleo to be a life-long change there must be flexibility. In general an 80/20 rule is a good solution. 80% of the time you make paleo choices and the other 20% of the time you can let loose so you don’t feel deprived and go crazy!
This last one is my favorite, it really is just that simple. Thanks nomnompaleo 🙂
So, let’s quickly go over a few commonly asked questions, shall we?
– How do you know if you should eat it? Eat real food, food with either no ingredient list (produce & meat) or a list that only includes real foods and spices (like canned coconut milk with no crazy ingredients). A good general rule is, if you can’t pronounce something in it, don’t eat it.
– What the heck is a legume? If you aren’t sure what a legume is, it is 1. a leguminous plant (so helpful, right?) and 2. a seed, pod, or other edible part of a leguminous plant used as food. Legumes that you are probably most familiar with include: peanuts, peas, soybeans/edemame, and any type of bean (black, pinto, red, navy, baked, lima, northern, red, etc). These are NOT paleo, yo.
– Why not vegetable oils, like canola, vegetable, sunflower and safflower oils? Well, they are heavily processed, and easily damaged with light and heat. When they become damaged via oxidation/heat/light they become RANCID. Rancid oils are in no way good for you and can cause some big issues if consumed. The problem here is that even if you don’t cook with them they still begin to oxidize from the heat of the lights on grocery store shelves… so they may be completely rancid before you even purchase them. Gross, right?
– How about natural sweeteners like Xylitol or Stevia? Um… no. If you can’t find it in it’s true form in nature to use as a sweetener then you should avoid it. Good natural sweeteners include: honey (especially raw, local), pure maple syrup, dried dates, bananas, applesauce, etc.
– Why can’t I have corn? Corn is a vegetable!!! Actually, corn is a grain. Grains are not meant to be digested in our guts and cause a lot of issues for a lot of folks. If you do your own experiment and find out you can tolerate it well then go ahead and eat your corn. Be warned though, nearly all corn in the country is a GMO (genetically modified organism) and has been engineered for your consumption. It ISN’T REAL FOOD. FYI 🙂
– Can I get all my necessary fat from nuts and seeds? Please don’t. Nuts and seeds have an improper ratio of Omega 3s and Omega 6s which is a big problem in the US, especially due to all the trans fats and processed foods available. Your best bet is to get all your fat from avocados, coconut in all it’s forms, olives and olive oil, and from healthy, fatty animal products.
If you have any other questions, leave them in the comments section and I will answer them for all to see! Otherwise, Google is your friend if you are ever unsure on a certain food/item/ingredient!
Congrats on anyone getting started on their journey!