How a Paleo Diet Works? - Slender Kitchen

How a Paleo Diet Works?

Following the Paleo Diet usually feels complicated at the beginning as you learn which foods are allowed and learn new recipes. However many people find that once they learn the core Paleo friendly foods, it is easier to follow the diet and make Paleo friendly choices.


The Paleo Diet, short for the Paleolithic Diet, is essentially a diet that focuses on eating fresh vegetables, fruits, nuts, proteins, and other naturally occurring foods that hunters and gatherers could have eaten during the "Paleolithic" era. For this reason, the Paleo Diet is also referred to as the caveman diet, since basically your goal is to eat just like a caveman would have before the introduction of processed food.

Also despite what you may have heard, there are lots of variations of the Paleo diet that vary in terms of what you can/can't eat and how strictly you must follow the plan. Like any diet, it is important to find something that works for you and that you can follow in the long term.

 

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Starting the Paleo Diet: The Paleo 30

Since following the Paleo diet exactly all the time can be difficult (it's hard to imagine never having sugar, grains, or alcohol again), most people suggest starting the diet by following a strict Paleo diet for the first 30 days. That means to kick off the diet and end some of your body's cravings for sugar and grains, you eliminate everything that is non-Paleo for the first 30 days without cheating. This will help your body adapt and also help you get used to eating this way. During this time, experiment with new Paleo recipes and find some go-to Paleo dishes that you and your family love.

Maintaining the Paleo Diet: Cheat Meals or the 85/15 Rule

Although not the official Paleo diet, many people advocate following the Paleo diet using either "cheat meals" or the 85/15 rule. These are meant to help you maintain the diet in the long term.

Cheat meals mean that 1-3 times per week, depending on your weight loss goals, you get to indulge in things that aren't Paleo – a bowl of pasta, a glass of wine, a piece of cake. These cheat meals should not be complete calorie fests, but should help you feel like you are "missing out" and should help for special occasion and holidays. If you notice a change in your energy levels or weight, make sure your cheat meals aren't too frequent or contain too many calories. One or two pieces of pizza is fine, but a whole pie may set you back.

Some people also prescribe to a cheat day, instead of a couple of cheat meals. With a cheat day, one time per week you get to eat whatever you want, "within reason." This can include any foods that aren't allowed on the Paleo diet as well as your normal Paleo favorites.

The third method that people use to help them maintain Paleo in the long term is to follow the 85/15 rule or 90/10 rule depending on how strict you would like to follow the diet. Under this rule, 85% or 90% of the food you eat should be Paleo and the other 10-15% can be foods that normally aren't allowed on the Paleo diet.

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