Monday, January 24, 2011

Labels, Part Two

I recently found out the label for the diet I was follow from the fall of 2009 to last fall.  It is called the Paleo Diet and is based upon the principles of eating whole foods like man ate before the development of cities.  You should eat mostly fruits, vegetables and animal protein with a moderate fat intake.  I followed this diet for a long time until I realized that it wasn’t working for me.  I was developing a junk food (in the form of tortilla chips) habit that I craved alongside sugar.  Last fall I added in root vegetables (as it was the season) which curbed the sugar, but caused me to gain weight.  It didn’t make me happy anymore.

This January I have come upon a way of eating that makes me so happy.  I am eating 2/3 raw meals and 1/3 vegan/vegetarian meals.  A truly surprising develop considering my resistance to it when I listened to the lessons for school. I hesitate to label myself that way though, because this is how I feel now.  It developed through the cleanse I am doing and has just suited me.  Will I ever eat animal meat again?  My guess is I will.  Will I go totally raw this summer?  I have no idea.  But right now, this is making me happy. I feel vibrant, energetic and clear.  I am at a weight I truly like and feels sustainable. 

What am I eating that makes me feel so good?  I am eating beans, leafy greens, root (and other) vegetables, and fruits in abundance and whole grains and fats (in the form of nuts, seeds and avocado) in moderation.  Sounds eminently reasonable, right?  You are thinking this doesn’t sound too bad, aren’t you?

Why am I thinking about this right now?  Because I think this is all individual.  This is working for me, but I wouldn’t tell you that this is the healthiest diet and everyone should do it.  Having just read The China Study and Good Calories, Bad Calories simultaneously I can tell you that studies can be interpreted many different ways and that the scientists really don’t have a universal answer either.  My mom hasn’t eaten chocolate, coconut or eggs often for the past twenty years because the prevailing wisdom said not to if she wants to control her cholesterol.  Both those books said something different on the subject.  Somewhat similar, but from a different foundational basis.

So.  Chew on that for a while and then ask yourself, “Is the food I’m eating sustaining me?”  If not, you don’t need to find a diet by name (although I imagine that makes it easier) just try to discover the foods that make you feel good and the ones that slow you down.  Try to remove the ones that drain you and more of the ones that fill you with energy.  Or you can call me Smile.


  1. I really enjoyed reading about the Paleo diet for a while. I even bought a pair of 5 finger Vibram shoes based on a Paleo blogger's recommendation! (full disclosure, I am planning to return them to REI, I have worn them maybe 2x)

    Like you said, I think its completely individual based. Have you read much of John Douillards Ayurvedic books? I'd love to share one with you if not, I'll bring it up to Yoga Bhoga!

    I love the kitcheri cleanse, that light feeling stays with you a long time :)
    All my cheesy nachos have not exactly been my most optimal foods this week... I'm digging your tales of husband and family habits... shifting.

  2. I would love to get one of his books. I have one book on Ayurveda, but didn't really like it. Would love to read more!