Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Continued thoughts about paleo and disordered eating...

Life sure is strange. Just when you put something out there, you start getting bombarded with messages.

I liked the responses I got to my last post... encouragement and comradarie is always nice.

But the world provided me with a response, an article emailed to me that I want to share:

Why People Fail on a Paleo Diet (this article is great for dispelling myths about paleo, too.... making sure people know it is NOT a low-carb diet or a no-salt diet, etc etc... also how people who only do paleo part way (80 or 90%) are not getting the actual benefits of it which I would like to write a post about in the future).

One of the points in the article is about paleo orthorexia, which I am glad for a little extra insight into the matter: "Paleo Orthorexia: This is when diet takes on your whole life. We need to realize that we have evolved from where are ancestors once were. We're no longer caveman and nor should we try to live exactly as they did. Don't try to calculate everything, concentrate on good food choices and the rest should come by itself."

Basically, they say not to be an extremist. Don't obsess about "what did people eat in prehistory" (which I don't... I am more concerned about nutrition and inflammation than caring about what my ancestors ate). The article makes the point not to super restrict some things, like butter and potatoes, because "if we fail to make these somewhat harmless additions to our diets, our eating habits will become much more difficult to maintain over time, leading to the inevitable collapse." It's a good point.

A good paleo diet is a mixture of science, anthropology, and good old common sense.

As an anthropologist, I like this. I like looking at WHY I eat certain things and how my culture affects my outlook on food.

As a quasi-scientist, I like this. I like knowing what my food is doing to my body. I like putting things into my body that make it an efficient, well-running machine.

As someone who appreciates common sense, I like this. I think I am exercising common sense with this diet. I am eating 45-50% carbs, 25-30% protein, and 25% fats every day (with most of the carbs coming from vegetables). I DO still calorie-count, because I have a hard time regulating my eating, but I am not obsessive. I eat a good amount of calories everyday. I eat a variety of foods. I eat socially.

So, ending this train of thought for now: I do not believe that me turning to paleo is part of my disordered eating. I do believe it IS the first time I have had a real, healthy and balanced control over my nutrition.

And I am happy :)


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