Truth be told; food, dieting, and nutrition are complicated animals. Search any new concept, and you’ll find strong conflicting arguments within the first page of Google. With this being said, there are some key points that are tough to argue; eat whole foods and build your diet from meats, plants, and minimal processed items. It’s really that simple.
If you’d like to follow a more natural diet (paleo, primal, or just a little more natural), there are a few ways to make it a little easier:
- The first rule of Paleo - Snap your #Foodporn Post your creations and be sure to tag us, at @USPlabs!
- The 80% RuleDon’t get too wrapped up in 100% compliance. Focus on 1-2 meals a day to start with. If you can successfully stick to the plan, try shooting for 4-5 days per week. Eventually, your goal should be to have around 80% compliance. Be sure to take some time off of a super-strict plan to enjoy some foods that were a little off the beaten path. Use this off time as an opportunity to consume your vice. That food that you think about EVERY night lying in bed. Don’t worry, you can have it on Saturday. Just don’t turn it into a FATurday.
- Smoke and MirrorsTrust us, we know the thought of NO pasta is scary. Implement compliant foods like spaghetti squash to get a similar taste and texture, without swaying from your plan. You can also “rice” cauliflower, for a close-to white rice experience. Be sure to season with herbs with strong flavor profiles. Garlic seems to be a great go-to here.
- Paleo doesn’t have to be carb freeSome of the concepts of these natural diets suggest eliminating refined carbohydrates like white pastas. However, carbohydrate sources from fruits and vegetables are totally within the plan. Don’t be afraid to add a few servings of potatoes per week to get your carbohydrate count up, if your macronutrient needs are not being met. Following a Zone diet block plan is commonplace within the paleo community.
- Go 50/50If you’re finding yourself confused or overwhelmed, just go 50/50. Fill half of your plate up with vegetables and the other half with meat of your choice. This will take the guesswork out of the meal preparation, and will remain compliant with your paleo/primal goals.