On Monday, May 20th, Warren and I were coming back from Vancouver on the ferry and I brought up changing our way of eating. We had just been away on vacation for two and a half weeks so our fridge didn’t have any of our regular things we would buy in it so it seemed to be the perfect time to try a something new.
Warren asked me what I wanted to change since we already ate healthy and I said I wanted to try to eat less bread and carbs if possible. I love bread and could very easily sit down with a fresh loaf and a jar of peanut butter. I have never done that but it doesn’t mean that it hasn’t crossed my mind when that loaf comes out of the bread maker. I also said that I would like to get back to eating less sweets because I used to have will power to not eat them but I have lost it.
Warren then mentioned that he had heard of the paleo diet or paleolithic diet. I didn’t know what that was so I did some research on my phone and found out that it meant you didn’t eat grains, sugar, legumes and dairy. That sounded ok and a bit scary at the same time. We chatted some more about it and I searched for different recipes that we could make with the groceries we needed to buy.
Our first meal at home that night was chicken with vegetables and cauliflower rice. It doesn’t sound that much different that what we would normally have but instead of rice we used cauliflower. Both of us enjoyed the meal and the only real difference was the amount of time it took to prepare the ‘rice’ compared to using actual rice.
Then the big changes came when it was time for breakfast because I would typically have grains; either bread or some sort of cereal. I would sometimes have fruit, yogurt or eggs as well. But since I can’t eat all but two of those things I had to rethink breakfast. The first week I had hard-boiled eggs and raw vegetables. It was a good but I knew I wouldn’t want to have that every day. I started searching for new recipes to try to the first weekend I made omelet muffins. They tasted yummy but the only bad part was that I didn’t grease the muffins tins well enough and they stuck to the sides and bottom a bit. I have now made the mental note for the next time I make them. I have found I have got more creative with breakfasts in the last two weeks and have made almond pancakes, added turkey bacon along with our eggs, and have made a few different types of scrambled eggs with vegetables in them. Next on my list to try is a summer vegetable frittata.
Our typical lunches were sandwiches or leftovers from supper the night before. We didn’t typically take salads but that has since changed. My first week for lunch I would make a salad with vegetables and meat. We are still eating salads but vary up the type of meat we put in them and also added some dried fruit and nuts to them. I have made a few soups and we still have left overs for lunch; so some things don’t change.
My first week for snacks I was having some fruit, more vegetables and almonds. I was on day four of eating this way and I was starting to feel like a vegetable. Warren was away in Ottawa for a few days running for the Military so he wasn’t feeling the same way I was feeling about vegetables. I was feeling good body wise and enjoying what I was eating but I was really starting to miss bread or something that felt like I was eating bread. But since I couldn’t have it what could I make that would feel like I was replacing it? I started looking online for something like a muffin or a bar that would give me the bread like texture and I found a recipe for a paleo breakfast bar. They hit the spot. I have made them a few times so far and also made them today and added cranberries to the recipe.
Earlier this week I had found two muffin recipes and I was very excited to try them. Today I am off work and I spent the morning baking and doing something I also love…besides exercise and eating. I of course though had to sample the muffins that I made. I tried the pumpkin one first because I made it first and also had it for my breakfast. Then with my salad for lunch I had one of the ginger and date spice muffins. Both were very good.
Dinners have been tasty and fun to make but we have found that they take more time to get all the different vegetables and things prepared. We know though typically we will have some sort of meat and then a vegetable. Some things that I have made so far are chicken gumbo, paleo chili, and we have experimented with different seasonings and sauces on chicken to create our own flavors. Tonight I am going to try to make a cauliflower crust pizza and I am looking forward to that.
So, why am writing a blog about this? Well, I have been asked “Why are you eating this way? You are already thin?” I am not eating this way to lose weight but more to try something different. I have never gone to this extreme to cut certain things out of my diet and I want to see if I can do it. I have counted calories in the past when I was heavier and that was a great way for me to see what I was eating and start to control what I was putting into my mouth. Changing up my eating habits was something I wanted to do for me and having Warren be part of it made it easier for sure because then the temptation to eat something he was eating and I couldn’t have wouldn’t be there.
I wanted to do this as well because I had been eating dessert or something sweet after dinner while we were away and I wanted to try to curb that. I also think that changing up my eating habits is a good thing because it can give your body a bit of a shock and makes it rethink so to speak. When I go to the gym I don’t do the same exercises and I don’t run the same route every time I go for a run because my body won’t be challenged. It will know what weight to expect to lift and it will know what hill is where. So, I am looking at eating paleo as challenging my body for a bit.
In the last three weeks I have had two days where I have eaten things that are not strictly paleo and I have enjoyed those meals. We have gone out for dinner once and it is a bit more of a challenge to order my meal but I will figure it out. I know and have read that it is good to treat yourself but I have found so far that I feel better if I stick to eating the paleo way. I have found that my cravings for bread and for sweets have diminished and if I want something sweet I will have some fruit after supper.
So, have you tried a new way of eating and challenging your body? What worked for you? What was the hardest thing about making the change?