Out of the Cave – My Journey with a Paleo diet (Day15)

I thought that maybe I’d taken on a huge challenge by going with a Paleo diet but after the first two weeks I’m feeling pretty pleased with myself.

I cheated, it’s hard not too, but I still think I’ve done well. I made the decision to cut everything out at once rather that one group at a time. The reason for this being that I’d already made some changes to my diet so it was sensible just to carry on. 
So, no dairy, no grains and no sugar, it doesn’t sound very easy does it?
There are loads of alternatives though, I’m a big fan of nut milks, in particular almond milk so that has featured rather than dairy. Next week I’m going to have a go at making my own. 
Sugar I’d already attempted to give up and although I was doing quite well there was still my sugar full nemesis to deal with…biscuits! I was a biscuit addict and could easily eat half a packet at a time. I’ve struggled not to eat biscuits, it would be easier if there were non in the house but most of my family like biscuits and I can’t deprive them. It was a real test of my willpower and I confess there have been a few biscuits that have found their way into my mouth, but I can honestly say, not half a packet, even over the whole fotnight. That has to be progress hasn’t it! 
Breakfast has been most difficult. I love my cereal! My medication means I can’t eat for an hour after I take them first thing so I generally do not have breakfast until the children have gone to school. Then I settle down with my cereal and cup of tea. I do have time to make breakfast but to be honest I really don’t feel like tucking into a huge plate of meat or eggs, or paleo pancakes, or vegetables. I just don’t feel that hungry in the morning. So, I looked into Chia, and found that I do actually like it despite it looking like frogspawn.
bowl of chia with almond milk, figs and cinnamon

I’ve had chia with chopped dates, raisins and cinnamon which was lovely. I also tried chia with mixed berries and honey which I whizzed up in the food processor to give it a different texture, for a breakfast treat you can also have chia mixed with raw cacoa and peanut butter! Then I found out that chia is not really auto-immune friendly so I should restrict my intake. My search for another breakfast is on!

For other meals I’ve found it easy to just make a few adjustments. So when my family have spaghetti I have courgetti, when they have mashed potato, I have mashed sweet potato, when they have rice I have cauliflower rice. I even made myself a lasagna using courgette instead of pasta, it was really tasty but it doesn’t stay together well so it just slopped all over my plate and didn’t look like lasagna at all.

My favourite lunchtime meal has been a salad of avocado, cucumber and apple with a home made dressing of french mustard, olive oil and apple cider vinegar. It’s really tasty!

I’ve treated myself to home made chocolate which is incredibly easy to make but does taste like really dark bitter chocolate, so no good if you are a fan of Cadbury’s. I did make a chocolate mousse too which was a little more creamier.

I can’t say that I’ve not felt hungry because  my medication makes me feel hungry all the time, but over the two weeks I’ve found I’ve gone for fruit as a snack rather than chocolate or biscuits. Dates are amazing for giving you a  sweet hit!

The reason I started this diet was not to lose weight but to help my auto-immune system which has really gone to pot. I wanted to repair my gut which can be the cause of so many problems. I know that since I got sick I’ve put on a lot of weight but I stopped weighing myself after I realised I’d put on two stone. My husband thinks I should weigh myself so I can track any loss, but I’m not sure I want to.

This last weekend I strayed off the diet. On Saturday I had rice with my husbands home made curry. I just didn’t fancy cauliflower rice. I also had some naan bread! That nice I had bloating and heartburn for the first time in two weeks. On Sunday it was Mother’s Day so I had a nice cake after dinner. Again I paid for it with heartburn and an increase in muscle spasms during the night.

I think this confirms that the diet works, but it also tells me that it’s gluten that is probably the main culprit. I’m quite happy giving up dairy now, and giving up sugar hasn’t bothered me too much. I have had cravings for bread though and I still miss cereal. It’s typical that it’s things that are doing me the most harm are the ones I miss the most.

What do you think, could you manage a paleo diet?
Do you think I should be weighing myself?

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