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For What It’s Worth

paleo-on-a-budgetFor what it’s worth: thoughts on a caveman diet budget.

Search the internet and you will find a plethora of articles dealing with economies of budget shopping on caveman style diets.

Here’s what we think: This diet will hit you in the wallet harder than a diet based on low-cost carbohydrate based, processed food.  There’s no doubt about it, the most natural paleo style diet packs a punch! Chicken nuggets and chips, a loaf of white bread, a can of beans on toast, fish fingers and chips, pizzas all coming in at less than a pound a piece can look good value to those of us on a limited income or at least better value than splashing out on a slim piece of organic meat that could scarcely feed two adults let alone the three children who follow along behind in our own family? We say that at least some of that apparent additional cost can be offset by choosing cheaper cuts of meat and learning how to cook them (slow-cooker meals, stews, casseroles, slow roasting).  In this way the meat becomes tender and drops off the bone.

For example a large ham shank is on sale at our butchers for £2.25 each.  This fed the five of us through a process of slow roasting and then returning the skin to the cooker to make crackling for “afters”.  Be creative! You will save money as well by not eating out.  Sit back for a moment and think of all the take – out meals you have ordered in because you were too tired to eat?  Pizza, kebabs, Chinese, Indian delivered to your door: gone.  Too tired to cook stops here!  You will find that as your diet improves you will want to create strong, healthy meals for your family and indeed, may well be compelled to do this as you feel the significant health benefits in your life.  There are financial savings then to be made here.  There are also wonderful and perhaps time-forgotten benefits of eating a home-cooked meal together around a table.  We do this as a family now, every night around six.  It’s a time to check in and talk and laugh and catch-up.  Try it and see.

In addition to the above methods and cost saving idea’s further savings can be made by sourcing standard packaged meat off the supermarket shelves. This goes somewhat against the ideal, however it is a necessary consideration if we want easy weight management and better health for all.

You will be aware by now of the dangers of refined carbohydrates and will know that a natural, or stone age, caveman style diet is all about moving away from these foods. Well yes of course this is true, however to do this we have also to be aware that this doesn’t just involve ceasing to take things like sugar and bread directly. What we must also consider is that because these foods are cheap and when consumed create weight gain, they are used throughout the food chain to feed the animals we feed on.  Intensively farmed animals fed on corn and not grass are also susceptible to becoming sick and so are given a whole host of drugs and hormones to keep them alive long enough to get to market.  This leaves us with a dilemma, obviously some of the drugs, toxins and anti-nutrients contained in the foods used to fatten intensively reared animals is going to carry through into the animal and thus onto whomever may consume that animal, that said different parts of the animal have different concentrations, offal has the highest concentrations so best avoided from intensively reared stock not fed on grass. That considered, on the other hand the meat from animals produced in this way litters the supermarket shelves and at low prices. You now have a very important decision to make and this will no doubt be led by your financial situation. Yes, if you want effortless weight management, lots of energy and to be free of worry from disease you need to avoid ‘all’ direct sources of refined carbohydrate. This is a given and goes without saying, however to do this in the absolute and remove it completely is more expensive than the average shop, though as was pointed out earlier there are cost saving tricks you can do to help.

Whether you choose fully organic grass fed meat or the grain fed, chemical induced substitute comes down to a simple equation, can you afford it? If yes, then get it, it’s worth every penny. If on the other hand your budget won’t stretch to this level, don’t worry you’re still doing everything you can to give yourself the best chance in life. If this is you, and this happens to be the vast majority, always buy the best you can afford. Instead of grass fed organic Aberdeen Angus, switch to an organic free range chicken. If you can’t afford organic free range eggs, then opt for caged eggs, it’s still better than a boxed pizza.

Like many things in life, it’s about choices and although perhaps we’re forced to make concessions at times, as long as the foods you choose are real foods and not mechanically modified or manufactured by machines you wont go far wrong.

We notice too that when people change direction and begin eating within our diet programs, more fat, more protein, less carbohydrate: they actually eat less (often a lot less) because hunger is curbed and under control and stops being an issue.  In this way you will make financial savings: you will no longer be buying snacks for example to keep you going through the energy slumps that hit around 10.00 am and 4.00pm.  Good fats and protein will see you through. Finally, step back again and take a look at the bigger picture.  Abiding by our diet program can be the gateway to a happier, healthier life.  The “spin off “ from gaining control of your diet and health is more energy more vitality and a reduced risk of chronic disease and this means less time off work, less health care costs: you have in fact brought yourself more time and how valuable is that? For what it’s worth how about, Priceless!

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How To Paleo

how-to-paleo-ilkley

Cow and Calf - Ilkley Moor

How To Paleo: A Lifestyle in Review

This year has been about weight loss, nutrition, optimal health and longevity – How to paleo and we even looked at How to live like a mountain gorilla! (though never a serious consideration) Our aim was and is to inspire youMountain-gorilla to feel great now and in every single successive “now” long, long into your future.

Paleo eating is of course a “diet” though not in the conventional sense of the word (restriction, self-discipline, self deprivation, punishment, failure and lack anyone). No the paleo (palaeolithic) diet or caveman diet is none of the above!  This is “dieting”, Paleo works is not nor has never been about dieting. We use the our real food diet to optimise health.  Our focus is on lifestyle and well being and we are in it for the duration.  We’re improving overall health for the long term and we also know that the natural by- product of adapting to this lifestyle is effortless weight loss – a return to our natural weight.

We look at diet, stress, sleep, exercise, being outdoors and connections,.  We advocate courage, compassion and connection above all in life and are here to support you as you seek out and move to good health and longevity!

So forget “dieting” and instead revert to a different way of eating, stop shortening your life and making fat cats richer.  Do all you can to reduce stress levels.  Keep your cortisol levels down and never underestimate the powerful role of stress as a trigger for overeating. Sleep long and well.  Knowing how to paleo how gave this to us.  Sleep frees up the body to repair itself and keep us in HOMEOSTASIS.  Eight to nine hours per night should do it!  Sleep regulates mood, energy, cortisol levels and works wonders for your sex life (it’s free too)!

Exercise – take a look at this, it’s one of our favourite quotes of all time

“One of the unintended consequences of decades of terrible health advice (eat low fat foods, avoid red meat and saturated fat, do endless cardio on machines while indoors) is that being healthy becomes miserable drudgery.  Good health and diet should be joyous and life-affirming.  If it isn’t we’re doing it wrong” – J Stanton Gnolls

River-Wharfe-Burnsall

River Wharfe - Burnsall

Here’s what we do: walk, early morning, misty, cold, walk in darkness withpaleo-ilkley-moor torches exploring with the kids; rock climbing, tree climbing in day light hours, following the rocks up the river beck over the moors – here’s where we live it’s beautiful and its fun and it’s free !   Swim especially open water swimming – we both love it and  it’s an activity where you know you are truly alive, pull ups on a bar over the dining room door, walk running to work, after a while you will find naturally and without fuss that you want to move your body as it was designed to move and that doesn’t mean sitting behind a desk at work all day tapping on your computer!  No that only leads to extra large digits and I don’t know about you but I can live without that. So what’s the best exercise for fat burn? we’ll leave you to decide for yourself.

Get outdoors and chase the sunlight – yes difficult in winter in Britain but all this will pass and the sun will come again.  In the meantime supplement with Vitamin D this regulates mood, stress hormones and natural circadian rhythms – it gives you better sleep!  And where you do find the sun, roll up your jumper and let your belly see it feel the sun on your face and skin and soak up the rays

And finally make time to connect with new friends, with family and loved ones.  E M Forster wrote “only connect….”at the start of his masterpiece “Howards End” and this has always been a maxim for this paleo life.  Make time to meet up with other paleo friends too.  Hold food parties, swap recipes, talk about your experiences.  For every paleo connection you make you will find unexpected benefits.

So as we move into the Christmas period, we wish you well and send light and love for a great celebration!  The winter solstice has passed and the days will get brighter and longer – just you watch!  So there you have it, you know that how to paleo and that paleo works. The rest is down to you.

Happy Christmas from all at Paleo Works.Paleo-works-how-to-diet

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