Wow! I began my 30-day Paleo adventure April 1, and I can hardly believe it is already complete. I began with an even more restricted eating plan (no eggs, nuts, or Nightshades) because I wanted to try to determine if any of those foods is an issue for me. I challenged eggs after the third week and was relieved to not have any apparent adverse reactions to their reintroduction. Several days after that I challenged Nightshades, and I detected no reaction to the ones I've tried thus far. Two huge gastronomic sighs of relief! I have not yet reintroduced nuts because I had several exposures to those during my 30 days, so I need to give my system a bit longer to reset before I challenge those.
I cannot claim to have truly completed a Whole30 program, though. On day 27 I went off the reservation. Due entirely to my own lack of planning and execution, I found myself out of the house that morning with few prospects for Paleo-compliant eats until early evening. So I made the decision to eat fast "food" for breakfast. Not just eggs. And not just a little bit. No, I ate two egg-ham-and-"cheese" muffins. A definite learning experience. The first thing I noticed was, "Hey, these don't even taste like anything!!" I had never noticed that pre-Paleo. The second thing I noticed was that they sat in my stomach like a lump of playdough. It was as if my stomach was asking, "What in the world am I supposed to do with THIS?!" The third thing I noticed was that the lump of playdough was still there six hours later! Yuck. When I got home that evening I peeled a mango and devoured it like an iguana. Within minutes my stomach felt better. And then I got right back on the Paleo wagon and stayed there!
Results? Well, after blank-ty years of eating a pretty typical SAD (Standard American Diet) I was not expecting any astounding changes in the span of 30 days, but here is what I've noticed for myself:
- noticeably less daytime fatigue (which is a huge deal for me)
- ZERO cravings during the whole 30 days (this *was* actually astounding)
- much quicker recovery time after physically demanding activities (another huge deal for me)
- drastic reduction in cycle-related pain
I was not on a diet this April. I had no intention of losing weight or inches. I just ate Paleo. Yes, there were times that I was hungry, because I hadn't yet figured out how to keep enough of the right foods available for eating. Mainly I ate as much Paleo food as I wanted, whenever I wanted. And I never once ate anything that didn't taste good. Except the aforeconfessed drive-through thingies.
What now? I have absolutely no desire to go back to my former way of eating. It is wonderful to be noticing positive physical changes, but honestly I want to stick with Paleo because I LOVE the food! I am planning to challenge the eliminated foods (dairy, grains, and legumes) to see how my body responds to them. That way I can be an "informed indulger" at social occasions and whatnot. But I feel like I have a whole lot more deliciousness to explore in Paleo-Land! I even bought Nom Nom Paleo's iPad app http://nomnompaleo.com/ and have started trying more new things.
So the adventure continues!