Nine days ago I begrudgingly began my foray into a Paleo lifestyle, a diet that consists mainly of meat, vegetables and fruit. The Paleo diet excludes dairy, grains, sugar, legumes, processed oils, alcohol and caffeine.
But I love dairy, grains, sugar, legumes, processed oils, alcohol and caffeine so I was less than thrilled to give it all up. I have Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis, an autoimmune condition in which my body mistakenly attacks its own thyroid tissue. As with all inflammatory autoimmune conditions, diet plays a large role in either aggravating or minimizing chronic and bothersome symptoms. I decided to try a Paleo lifestyle for 30 days after an autoimmune flare up had me feeling sick, achy and miserable.
Though I anticipated that I might feel better with a Paleo regime, I did not expect to feel so fucking fantastic so soon.
The ever-present dark circles under my eyes are disappearing. My skin is smooth and silky. The keratosis pilaris (small, hard bumps) I have had on my arms for most of my life feel mostly flat and soft. I fall asleep quickly and stay asleep all night. I wake up feeling rested. I no longer fight mid-afternoon fatigue and I have the energy to do absolutely everything I need and want to do. I feel notably less depressed and anxious. I never feel sickeningly full but I never feel hungry.
So far I have had to Google ‘rutabaga’, ‘jicama’ and ‘parsnip.’ I have cut my left index finger three times and my thumb once. I have roamed grocery store aisles in search of coconut aminos and other obscure ingredients. I have spent more time in my kitchen in the past two weeks than I have in the nearly three years I have lived in this condo. I have avoided alcohol at all social functions, including a wine + pizza bar, a birthday party and a painful Denver Broncos game.
Yet as difficult as it is to fundamentally alter my lifestyle, I have already lost a staggering amount of weight in addition to the numerous other remarkable health benefits I have noticed. In a society so driven by instant gratification it seems that a Paleo lifestyle is the miraculous and immediate cure for what ails us.
One need only to lose 13 pounds in 9 days without once feeling hungry to realize that our modern manufactured food is pure poison. I would tell my narcissistic and emotionally abusive ex-boyfriend, the one who left nearly 20 comments on my blog calling me a “fat fuck” and a “fat cunt” and a “fat insecure piece of shit,” to eat his goddamn heart out, but he does not have a heart.
With a burgeoning passion for this lifestyle, I need only a bit of guidance on how to properly use kitchen knives without slicing skin. I look forward to my results at the end of 30 days and to the continuance of healthy habits and a nourishing routine. I am also really looking forward to a glass of wine.
But for now, I think Paleo really is the way to go.