Ok, so I’m feeling super cranky today. I basically just sent the girls upstairs to fend for themselves and told Charlie not to come and get me unless someone is BLEEDING.
Why am I ready to scratch my own eyes out? Well, it could be that two days ago I embarked on a journey I shall call “Gaga for Grain-Free” – yes, I said it. For really no other reason but potentially changing the health of my family, Vann and I are going grain-free, primal, Paleo, whatever you would like to call it.
And I think I must just really be craving a bagel this morning. Like in a way that makes me want to hang my kids up by their ankles and leave them there.
I’m just kidding. Sort of. Let’s start from the beginning:
I found out last week that one of my dearest college friends found out she had a gluten intolerance last year and has since lost 45 pounds by following the Paleo diet. And let me just say, this darling friend was always beautiful – in college she was one of THE prettiest girls I knew – so to see her improve on that – well, she literally looks lit from within. I thought, “Dude, WHAT is she doing?? Whatever it is, I need it, and fast.”
So I guess that planted a seed in me. And I started doing a little reading, started asking some questions. I came to find out that two more of my close friends from college (and their spouses) follow this diet or something similar to it.
Huh? What am I missing here?
As you know I’ve been doing Weight Watchers (mostly successfully) since last summer. And as much as I have loved WW, I just can’t seem to get past the holiday slump. I’ve been stuck at the same place since Halloween, give or take a pound or two. Super frustrating, right?
Well, I admit it, I was super intrigued by Paleo. I am no doctor, obviously, so I wanted to find a pretty simple way of explaining what the diet consists of. I found this great diagram (in pictures, no less) here. In my few days of reading up on it, I’ve seen numerous accounts of how going grain-free helps with a HOST of ailments, can cure disease, promote good “gut” health, etc., etc. I’ve written very openly about my struggles with depression over my adult life – and when I read that it can help with depressive tendencies – well, that about sealed it for me.
I just couldn’t resist the testimonials of my friends who feel better than they EVER have in their LIVES. And don’t feel deprived, and are able to eat things like avocadoes and olives and steaks and a million other things, and get this – STILL lose weight. Because, you know, this goes against everything I’ve learned following the Weight Watchers program. So, yeah, I was a little scared about cooking my eggs (not just the whites) in butter and throwing out all low fat items in my house. But I had some pretty awesome results to go off of, so:
When Vann came home that night I broke the news to him that I had gone through our pantry and purged ALL of the processed foods. And yes, girl scout cookies and m & m’s were sadly a part of my whirlwind. I think he was scared initially, but thankfully I am married to a super-supportive spouse – he agreed to do a 30 day grain-free challenge with me, to start. I mean, really, what do we have to lose??
Yesterday I started the replenishment of my pantry. In PepsiCo’s benefits program if you fill out a health survey you get a $75 pre-paid shopping card – a perfect contribution to buying all of the staples we need to get our Paleo kitchen going.
Coconut flour, almond meal flour, coconut oil, grass-fed butter, omega-3 eggs, grass-fed beef, free-range chicken…just a small list of the things I am super excited to start using.
As far as our kids eating Paleo, well, that’s a whole ‘nother post. For now, I’m going to start being super vigilant as to what they put in their mouths, and primarily, what they snack on. I’m sure there is nowhere to go but up when it comes to Charlie and her “behavior” struggles – I’m anxious to see if cutting out the vast majority of sugar in her diet will help her be more focused and less “all over the place”.
All of this being said, before you knock me off my grain-free pedestal, although I have enjoyed the yummy food we’ve made these past three days, I must be having a carb withdrawal day (which my sweet friend Haley tells me is totally normal and will pass). I am, well, kind of pissed off today and not afraid to say it.
As this is the tale of a carb-a-holic gone grain-free, I will post about this journey probably quite a bit. If something tastes good, I’ll post recipes and share tips and tricks. And most importantly, how the diet is impacting mine and my family’s health and well-being.
So my first challenge is going to be finding a great recipe for pancakes. I love pancakes. So much. I know there has to be delicious, grain-free options out there. Feel free to share if you have any I should try!
Oh, and I forgot to say – yes, you can drink red wine on this diet. You know that was one of my first questions, after all.
To going gaga for grain-free,