I had been smoking for 10 years and I was one of those smokers who owned it. It was a part of my identity, a facilitator of the best parts of me, my humor, my attractiveness, it was all made possible through smoking. I was also sluggish, tired, grumpy, and terribly unfit. I had a really unhealthy relationship with food and considered it the enemy, I never developed any kind of eating disorder but this was more to do with the fact that I couldn't be bothered having a disorder.
My girlfriend was obese, and we were pretty unhappy. So we made a deal: she would lose weight, and I would quit smoking.
The first two weeks were a nightmare, trying to quit smoking while calorie counting, eating salads and tuna and servings of meat the size of my palm. That was hard.
But I did it, I managed to get through the first few weeks and my girlfriend started dropping the pounds. But something wasn't right. We didn't feel good. I was hungry and tired and my body hurt all the time. So I started to research health and nutrition. I found Paleo. Give up grains? Fine. Give up my giant servings of fruit every day? Fine. Give up the sugar in my coffee? that hurt a little. Start eating more fat? Sorry, what???
Well, we tried it. Suddenly I started packing on the muscle, my skin improved, my nails improved. I learned more and more about macronutrients and micronutrients and started to really care about my body, in a way I never had before. My girlfriend started losing weight like crazy, but the best thing was it didn't hurt, it felt good, she was toning up and gaining energy and losing fat all at the same time. I learned about omega 6 omega 3 ratios, and so we started eating grass fed meat and cut down the nuts and chicken, boy did that help! I gave up milk, then changed my mind and started drinking raw milk, which is the best thing I have ever done. I learned how to read research and I learned how to prepare most of my food from scratch. I learned that life can be so good when you care about yourself, when you put yourself back into nature, into the food chain and embrace traditional lifestyle.
This has been the best, life changing experience of my life.
My girlfriend has lost 44 pounds, with another 30 to go. I lost 15 pounds without even meaning to and I feel great! We're looking at getting chickens and starting a veggie garden, and we eat bone broth twice a week. We're happy, and starting to plan a family, we're looking forward to having little healthy and happy paleo babies. Life is good.
I think, looking back, the biggest challenges were actually teaching myself to be free. There is nothing restricting about the paleo diet. To me it embodies only freedom.
What advice (if any) would you give to someone interested in trying a carbohydrate-restricted or paleo diet? Were there any obstacles that you overcame that could help future dieters?
Get a mentor, whether it be a blog mentor or a friend. You will need someone who can help guide you and give you advice.
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