I know that not every person agrees with the idea of eating paleo. However, I think that the basic threads of what paleo living is can help anyone improve their eating and health. They are basic ideas, but ideas that we often forget out of convenience and busy-ness.
So here is my list lessons from paleo that I think everyone can benefit from.
- Eat high quality foods – Paleo encourages people to eat high quality foods. Eating locally and organically is the motto of paleo eaters the world over. Furthermore, there is a focus on eating grass-fed, pastured meats whenever possible. Don’t forget that we want wild caught seafood, too.
- Cook your own meals – While I’m sure it’s entirely possible to eat paleo without cooking your own meals (whether by the fortune of having someone who will cook for you or a lot of paleo friendly restaurants in your neck of the woods), paleo encourages you to cook your own meals. I never ate out much to begin with, but since becoming paleo, I eat out even less. You don’t know what kind of junk you are eating when you eat out.
- Avoid processed foods – Yes, there are paleo processed foods. However, paleo really encourages, fresh, home cooked eats. All that packaged stuff, goes right in the trash can when do your pantry clean out and start eating paleo. I know that stuff is easy to eat. I went through a spree of being depressed and eating lean cuisines last year. I’m not proud of it, but committing to paleo, I don’t even dare. I’d rather starve.
- Sleep – Being paleo (or primal or half a dozen other terms), is not just about eating, although that’s where it usually starts for most people. Paleo is about a lifestyle and about thinking about how your body best functions. Your body best functions with sleep. Make is a habit and a priority to get enough good quality sleep every night.
- Exercise – You don’t need to get crazy and stressed over exercise (in fact that would be the wrong idea), just do some. Walk, run, play tennis, ski…whatever it is that’s active and has you moving.
- Stress less – Lower your stress levels. I’m pretty sure just about everyone can reduce their stress in some way. My current stress less goal is to wean myself of excessive technology use. Being constantly plugged in makes me crazy.
- Water, water, water – Drink a lot of it. Don’t skimp and don’t adulterate it with sugars and whatnot. Just drink water that tastes good to you.
- Listen to your body – If your body says sleep, don’t give it coffee. Listen to that call and get some shut eye. I know that some people have crazy jobs and responsibilities where you might have to caffeinate instead of sleep, but try to keep those moments to a minimum.
I’m pretty sure I had a lot more for that list, but that’s all I can come up with for now. Feel free to add to the list in the comments section.